HC Deb 21 November 1946 vol 430 cc1022-3
69. Major Lloyd

asked the Financial Secretary to the Treasury what information other than that available to the Government is provided in the lectures available through the Lecture Department of the Central Office of Information.

Mr. Whiteley

None, Sir. 70. Major Lloyd asked the Secretary to the Treasury the annual cost of running the Lectures Department of the Central Office of Information; how many persons are engaged as lecturers; what fees per lecture they receive; and on what basis the lecturers are chosen.

Mr. Whiteley

About £50,000 for the current financial year. The list from which lecturers are chosen varies. It contains about 170 names at present. Lecturers receive a fee of from one to three guineas a lecture, subject to a maximum payment in any week, and also expenses on travelling, etc. The basis of selection is the ability to lecture knowledgeably and effectively to public audiences on the subject concerned.

Major Lloyd

Would the right hon. Gentleman assure the House that the basis of choosing these lecturers is not in accordance with any party bias whatever?

Mr. Whiteley

Certainly, Sir.

Sir W. Wakefield

Will the right hon. Gentleman say how many hon. Members of this House are included in the list of lecturers?

Mr. Whiteley

I have not the list before me and cannot say.

Mr. Spence

Can the right hon. Gentleman say what is the average duration of these lectures, and the maximum per week a lecturer can earn?

Mr. Whiteley

The maximum in any week is not very large, but of course I cannot tell the House the duration of the lectures. That depends upon the lecturer.

Mr. Stephen

Are not many of these lecturers members of the Conservative Party?