HC Deb 02 December 1948 vol 458 c2180
The Prime Minister (Mr. Attlee)

Mr. Speaker, I am sure that everyone in this House will have learned with regret of the death of Mr. Hubert Beaumont. I do not think that we realised, when illness forced him to give up the position he was holding in this House, that that illness would so soon terminate fatally. I think that during his tenure of the Deputy-Chairmanship he had commanded the respect of the whole House. He was courteous, he understood the duties of the Chair, he was impartial, he served the House faithfully. I am sure that we are all very sorry that he had no time to rest after those arduous duties, and the sympathy of all of us will go out to his wife and son.

Mr. Churchill

Sir, the Prime Minister carries the whole House with him in what he has said. The late Mr. Beaumont discharged the difficult and delicate duties in the Chair at the Table with complete impartiality, with great knowledge of the rules of the House, with much indulgence and courtesy towards Members, and with a full understanding of the traditions of this House which are not contained in any book or code of rules. On this side of the House we felt indebted to him for the necessary services which he rendered, and we share with the Prime Minister and the Government party, to the full, the deep regret with which we have learned of his untimely death. He died in harness. The interval between his presiding over the Debates in this House and the ending of his life was very short indeed, but at any rate all his days, of which we have so much knowledge in the House, were well spent and were to the credit of those great institutions on which in this difficult period the life and freedom of Britain depend.

Mr. Gallacher

I should like to say that this is an occasion when from my heart, I can echo the words of the Prime Minister. I went to see Hubert Beaumont in hospital when he was there last, and his whole mind was concerned with the House where he had played such a prominent part. He was kind, courteous and just. He has suffered much, his suffering now is over. May he sleep in peace.