§ The Minister of Supply (Mr. John Wilmot)
I am grateful to you, Mr. Speaker, for giving me an opportunity of making a statement, which I had intended 618 to make when replying to a Question, which was placed on the Order Paper last week, but which has, unfortunately, been deferred. The Question concerned a matter which was the subject of a paragraph in the "Financial Times," of last Monday, to the effect that I had paid from public funds the travelling and entertainment expenses of a large party of journalists on the occasion of my recent visit to Newcastle. There is not a word of truth in this. The facts are that, as I was to be in the North of England for a few days during the Recess, I accepted the invitation of a well-known firm to open their new housing fitments factory on the development area estate at Team Valley, Gateshead, Journalists were the guests of the firm. Certainly no part of their expenses was borne by public funds.
§ Mr. Speaker
I think that I should point out that on a personal statement contentious matters cannot be raised.