HC Deb 25 January 1945 vol 407 cc975-9
Mr. Arthur Greenwood

May I ask the Leader of the House to state the Business for next week?

The Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs (Mr. Eden)

The Business for next week will be as follows:

effect from 1st November last and no application by individuals will be necessary.

Captain Graham: Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that this decision will give considerable satisfaction?

Following is the statement:

Tuesday—Second Reading of the Teachers (Superannuation) Bill and Committee stage of the necessary Money Resolution; Committee stage of Supplementary Estimates for the Ministry of Education, Board of Trade, Department of Agriculture for Scotland and other Services contained in House of Commons Paper No. 9.

Wednesday—Second Reading of the Export Guarantees Bill and Committee stage of the necessary Money Resolution.

Thursday—Committee stage of the Wages Councils Bill. Motion to approve the Biscuits (Charges) Order.

Friday—Conclusion of the Debate on the Second Reading of the Local Authorities Loans Bill and Committee stage of the necessary Money Resolution; Second Reading of the Road Transport Lighting (Cycles) Bill (Lords).

Mr. Greenwood

May I ask my right hon. Friend to enlighten the House about the Supplementary Estimates? I have gone through them myself and there are a large number of Departments involved, but, as far as I can see, the Committee stage of the Supplementary Estimates will offer little opportunity for a wide Debate. I think the House ought to know the scope of the Debate that may arise on Tuesday.

Mr. Eden

Of course the scope of the Debate is not a matter for me. I think the right hon. Gentleman is right, that the scope is not wide on the Committee stage, because my right hon. Friend will realise that first of all we have to get the Second Reading of the Teachers (Superannuation) Bill on that day.

Sir Percy Harris

Has it not occurred to the Leader of the House that these matters of cartels are very vital issues, and that therefore it might be possible to find time in the week following for the very urgent issue of cartels and monopolies in which the whole House is interested, and on which there has been a request for legislation?

Mr. Eden

What I tried to explain to my right hon. Friend yesterday was that to give time for a Motion on a subject such as he put down will not help us to get the Business through which we must get through. Almost all the programme I have put down is Business which we have to take within a certain period, and unless we take that Business, we cannot pass the legislation on larger issues which the House wishes to consider.

Mr. Kirkwood

I want to ask the right hon. Gentleman now if it is intended to make arrangements to give us a day to debate the redundancy of war workers?

Mr. Eden

I recollect my hon. Friend's request, but I cannot give him a special day for it. Moreover, I have been in consultation with my right hon. Friend the Minister of Labour, and I have hopes that that position is now righting itself. In any event my hon. Friend can take advantage of any opportunity on the Adjournment, or other opportunities that will be coming in the course of Business in the near future, in which case the Government will be ready to give their reply.

Mr. Molson

In view of the difficulty of the Leader of the House in giving these days for Debates, does he realise that there are now 11 Bills before the House, and does he recollect his expression of intention in December last to set up Standing Committees in order that the less important Bills may be dealt with upstairs? Will he remember also the half-promise he gave for a day to debate the White Paper on the Control of Land Use?

Mr. Eden

To take the last question first, I cannot promise to give my hon. Friend a day for that. As regards Standing Committees, I certainly have not forgotten what I said to the House, and that intention still holds, but I must remind my hon. Friend and the House that the majority of these Bills have not yet had their Second Reading, and we have to get that through before we send Bills upstairs.

Miss Ward

Can my right hon. Friend say when we are likely to have a Debate on Lord Munster's Report? I think my right hon. Friend said that there would be an opportunity to debate it.

Mr. Eden

I must look up any undertaking I gave to the hon. Lady.

Miss Ward

It was hardly an undertaking; it was more of a hope.

Mr. Henderson Stewart

Could the right hon. Gentleman indicate, for the benefit of Scottish Members, whether it is the intention of the Government to have a Debate next week on Scottish agriculture, or are the arrangements which have been made a mere formality?

Mr. Eden

My hon. Friend, with his experience of the House, knows that it is not for the Government to say whether there is to be such a Debate on the Supply Estimates. It is always open for any hon. Member to raise any subject, which is in Order, on those Estimates, and it may be that some will do that. If so, the Government representative will be able to give an answer.

Mr. Stewart

Is it open to arrangement?

Mr. Eden

Nothing of that kind can be arranged, and it would be very improper if it were, because it would infringe the rights of Members.

Mr. John Dugdale

Can the right hon. Gentleman say whether an opportunity will be afforded for a full discussion on the Report of the Cinematograph Films Council, which has been made to the Board of Trade?

Mr. Eden

I confess that beats me; I shall have to look into it.

Mr. Gallacher

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that there is the greatest disturbance and worry in every part of the country on the question of the redundancy of war workers? Is he aware that my hon. Friend the Member for Dumbarton Burghs (Mr. Kirkwood) and I have met three deputations from various parts of the country, representing a wide range of factories, and that it is wrong to say that this matter is righting itself? Will he not allow us to have a discussion, as this is a very important matter?

Mr. Eden

I have been in consultation with my right hon. Friend the Minister of Labour as a result of the communications I have received from my hon. Friend on the subject. I cannot afford a special occasion, but there will be ordinary occasions which the hon. Member can take. Perhaps it could be raised on the Adjournment next week, when the Government would be ready to give an answer on the matter.