HC Deb 22 June 1948 vol 452 cc1143-61

Amendment made: In page 13, line 18, leave out from the first "the," to "shall," in line 20, and insert: articles mentioned in paragraph (c) of Group 23 in the said Part 1."—[Mr. Jay.]

3.45 p.m.

The Economic Secretary to the Treasury (Mr. Douglas Jay)

I beg to move, in page 13, line 24, at the end, to insert: and (d) the following articles shall be deemed to have been chargeable at the rates hereinafter respectively specified for the period beginning with the said ninth day of April and ending with the fifteenth day of June, nineteen hundred and forty-eight, that is to say—

utility garments made wholly or mainly of fur skin Second
articles comprised in paragraph (d) of Group 5 in the said Part I Second
paper handkerchiefs and paper towels Second
articles comprised in subparagraph (iii) of paragraph (b) of Group 11 in the said Part 1 Second
articles comprised in paragraph (r) of Group 11 in the said Part 1 First
appliances comprised in paragraph (b) of Group 12 in the said Part 1, being appliances suitable for operation from gas mains Third
articles comprised in paragraph (d) of Group 14 in the said Part 1, other than glass chimneys and similar primary glasses First
articles comprised in subparagraph (i) of paragraph (a) of Group 17 in the said Part I or in subparagraph (i) of paragraph (b) of that Group or in sub-paragraph (i) of paragraph (c) of that Group Second
articles comprised in paragraph (a) of Group 18 in the said Part 1 Second."
This and the previous Amendment are consequential on the statement I made on 11th June giving the concessions in Purchase Tax which my right hon. and learned Friend had decided to make since the Debate on the Committee stage. This Amendment is necessary in the case of each of those items then enumerated in order to validate the collection of the tax during the interim period between 9th April, when the increased tax was imposed, and 16th June when the concession took effect.

Mr. David Eccles (Chippenham)

I beg to move, as an Amendment to the proposed Amendment, to leave out articles comprised in paragraph (a) of Group 18 in the said Part I—Second. I am surprised that the Economic Secretary introduced his Amendment so shortly, since it affects a very large number of people. My Amendment refers only to the tax on wireless and television sets. The question before the House is from what day should this reduced rate of 33⅓ per cent. begin to operate. I would remind the House that when the Chancellor opened his Budget, the tax on wireless and television sets stood at 50 per cent. He then, to the general dismay of the industry, proposed to raise that tax to 66⅔ per cent. Some weeks later, when the right hon. and learned Gentleman had been assailed by hon. Members in all parts of this House sitting in Committee, he confessed his error, turned right about and reduced the tax to below what it had been before—that is to 33⅓ per cent. The Chancellor's Amendment has in it more petulance than grace, because what the right hon. and learned Gentleman is saying is, "I was right until I admitted that I was wrong." He proposes that the condemned rate of 66⅔ per cent. should stay in force for a period from 8th April to 15th June. Our Amendment is a very friendly gesture. We want the right hon. and learned Gentleman to earn a reputation for doing handsomely what he has been convinced by this House it is right to do in one way or another, and we propose that the new rate of 33⅓ per cent. should begin to operate from 9th April.

There is a lot of money involved in this Amendment. Radio dealers up and down the country are carrying heavy stocks. Like any other trader, the radio dealer has to pay Purchase Tax at the time he takes delivery from the manufacturer or wholesaler, so that the capital which he has tied up in his stocks always includes the payment of Purchase Tax at the rate applicable at the time when he bought the goods in question. These stocks have been growing heavier for a long time. That really is no surprise to this House, because one of the chief arguments which the Chancellor accepted for the reduction in the tax was that the output of the radio industry has been overtaking demand at current prices. When that occurs, naturally, stocks increase in the hands of the trade. The truth is that the sales of wireless sets were falling off long before the Budget, and that, after 15th June, if the Clause is amended in the way which the Chancellor desires, nobody will have to pay more than 33⅓ per cent. Purchase Tax on a wireless or television set. That is a very considerable sum. It ranges, roughly, from £4 to £25 per set. The retailers will have to take the loss upon all their stocks on which they hay paid the higher rate of tax.

It would, therefore, seem fair to ask the Chancellor to make arrangements for the refund of all the tax upon stocks on which they themselves have paid the old rate of tax, but our Amendment does not do that. We are limiting the concession for which we are asking, to 8th April and after. We know that that means that very heavy losses will still have to be borne on pre-Budget stocks, but we have certain reasons for so restricting our proposals. In the first place, we are only asking the Chancellor to repair his own mistake. After all, the right hon. and learned Gentleman never ought to have brought in a 66⅔ per cent. Purchase Tax on wireless and television sets. He listened to the arguments, was convinced of his mistake, and cut the tax by half. We are only asking him to be generous in money as well as in words.

Secondly, the retail trade undertook to make a contribution to the campaign sponsored by the right hon. and learned Gentleman to reduce prices, a campaign which we support, and it seems to us reasonable that they should, as their contribution to the reduction of prices, bear the loss on their pre-Budget stocks. That is the second reason for limiting the concession for which we are asking. The third reason is that we wish to avoid the administrative problems which would be inevitable if we took into consideration the pre-Budget stocks of the trade and traced back all those sets that have been in stock for a very long time.

If our Amendment is accepted, as I am sure it will be, there will be no difficulty for the manufacturer or wholesaler to refund to the retailer the Tax which he has already collected since 8th April, and, in his turn, the wholesaler or manufacturer can make the adjustments in the payments that he will have to make from time to time to the Revenue. At the other end of the chain of distribution, the retailer can easily identify anybody who has been so impatient as to purchase a wireless set between 8th April and 15th June and make the appropriate refund to that customer.

There is a special reason for pressing this Amendment in regard to wireless and television sets, and one which I think will appeal to the Chancellor, because he has an intimate knowledge of the radio industry. When, after the war, it became possible again to manufacture sets for domestic use, demand greatly exceeded the supply and manufacturers were obliged to allocate their output on a quota system to retailers all over the country. As things got easier, the retailers continued to take up their quotas; indeed, the great majority of them continued to do so all along, even after the Budget last April, when they had grounds for thinking either that this House would reduce the tax from 66⅔ per cent. or that, if we failed to do that, a buyers' strike would develop. The fact is that the retailers have continued to take delivery, and I think this House should appreciate that action because, if they had not taken it, unemployment in the factories would have begun in earnest and the situation of the radio industry, which is going to be difficult enough in spite of this concession in tax, would have been very much worse. The retailers have played the game, and we are asking the Government to do the same.

I hope that the Government will not argue that the retailers do not deserve this concession because they made a windfall profit when the tax was raised from 33⅓ per cent. to 50 per cent. last November. Nothing of the kind is true. Their profit margins were controlled by the price control regulations, and it was not open to the majority of them, even if they had wished to do so, to raise their prices to cover the increase in the tax then imposed. But, far more important, the trade was already declining. The Christmas sales last year were only pushed to the volume which they did reach, and it was not a very satisfactory volume, by offering sets at pre-November Budget prices. I think the whole trade would agree with that statement.

4.0 p.m.

There is one further point. Why is it that we are only asking for this change in the Chancellor's Amendment in respect of one series of articles—wireless and television sets? It might be said that it is thoroughly unjust to pick out one article and not another. The answer is quite simple. If we were discussing paper handkerchiefs or second-hand Army blankets, it would be utterly impossible to identify the purchasers between 8th April and 15th June. A woman goes into a shop, puts her money on to the counter, takes away a few handkerchiefs, or buys a blanket or a piece of bedding, and nobody knows who she is, nor is it possible to say some weeks later whether she bought the handkerchiefs or not. That is not the case with wireless or television sets, because all these articles bear a serial number and it is, therefore, perfectly simple to identify them and to know exactly who has bought them.

I hope we shall not get from the Government an argument, such as we sometimes get, which runs roughly on the lines that because it is not possible to do justice to everybody, the Government do not see their way to do justice to anybody. We must not have that argument today. Here is a case—and this by far the most important case in the reduction of Purchase Tax brought about through the arguments of this House in Committee—where an enormous number of people are involved, and I feel sure we can trust the Government to accept the Amendment. In fact, I think this is an Amendment where we have the right to expect all sides of the House to give us support in persuading the Chancellor that "handsome is as handsome does."

I hope, therefore, that the right hon. and learned Gentleman will accept the Amendment, which goes part of the way—no more—to relieving a widely felt injustice brought about simply and solely because the Chancellor made a mistake. He brought in a rate of Purchase Tax, which, had he consulted the trade and all those people who knew about this business, he never would have brought in. All we are doing is to ask him to act handsomely in confessing the error which he has made.

Mr. Nigel Birch (Flint)

I beg to second the Amendment to the proposed Amendment.

Mr. Bramall (Bexley)

I should like to say a few words in support of the Amendment to the Amendment. It is true to say, I think, that the need for the remission, of the higher rate of tax was as strongly urged from this side of the House as from the other side. I think the Chancellor would be depriving us of at least half the benefit of this concession if he were not to follow it by conceding the point which has been put by the hon. Member for Chippenham (Mr. Eccles).

As I understand it, the case for this reduction of Purchase Tax was based on the effect it would have on two sections of the trade—first, the radio retailers, a quite definite and distinct section of the retail trade whose primary function is selling this type of goods and very few others; and, secondly, the manufacturing trade. If the further concession is not granted, the evil effect on the retail trade will, for a period, be very considerable. We are to be left with a position where the retail trade will have to carry this burden purely because, as the hon. Member for Chippenham put it, the Chancellor made a miscalculation in proposing something which he subsequently found to be unacceptable and to be a very heavy burden.

The burden is heavy because, as the hon. Member for Chippenham said, the retailers took steps to lessen the effect on the other section of the trade. I think it is true to say that the most evil effect of this higher rate of tax, which was in the minds of hon. Members on this side of the House, was the effect on the radio manufacturing industry and the danger of unemployment. In so far as those full effects have not been felt, they have not been felt because of the action of the retail trade in not cutting down more quickly their orders for goods. We are left, therefore, with the position that if this Amendment is not accepted and this concession is not granted, the retail trade will have to continue to bear a burden which this higher rate, for a limited period, places upon them, and will also have to bear part of the burden which they brought upon themselves through not allowing the full effect of the tax to fall on the manufacturing trade.

I cannot see how there can be any strong argument against the granting of this concession. The amount of money involved to the Exchequer must be small. There is a very recent precedent for this action because I remember that last year there was some discussion on heaters of various kinds. In that case the Chancellor gave a concession which was made retrospective, so that members of the public who had purchased goods—incidentally, less easily identifiable than those with which we are dealing—were able to obtain a refund of the money from the retailer, and the retailers were able to obtain their refund from the earlier stages of the trade, and so back to the Treasury. That was done with heaters last year and I imagine, therefore, there can be no great administrative difficulty. The number of articles purchased must have been comparatively small. I suggest that broad justice would be done if the Chancellor granted this concession.

Mr. David Renton (Huntingdon)

I support the Amendment to the Amendment, not only for the reasons which have been put forward already from both sides of the House, but for the further reason that I think the Government should be looking to the future in this matter. The arguments, so far, have been concerned largely with the possibility of injustice relating to the past. If, on this occasion, a decision is taken adverse to traders, surely they will in future be discouraged from laying up stocks of any commodity in respect of which they might think Purchase Tax was likely to be reduced in the future. Surely traders should be encouraged by every possible means to take steps to lay up reasonable stocks and not to cut down stocks. There must be a fear that if a decision against traders is taken on this occasion, in future they will be discouraged from laying up stock, and so the public may be inconvenienced and a shortage of goods may continue in the shops while goods may very easily be in plentiful supply.

Mr. Jay

The hon. Member for Chippenham (Mr. Eccles) fairly stated the issue which was before the House when he said the question was whether this reduction in tax should take effect on 9th April, as he proposes, or on 15th June, as we propose. It is, of course, clear that if the reduction were dated back to 9th April provision would have to be made for the refunding of the money already paid in tax. Therefore, the proposal to effect the reduction also involves a proposal for refunding, which is actually not included in this Amendment. Those really are the alternatives before us.

The hon. Member's Amendment is strictly confined to radio and, as I understand him, he argued that the concession which he proposes should be given for radio alone. I must say, straight away, that in our opinion that would be impossible. We could not possibly justify making this unusual and expensive concession solely for radio sets. The hon Member spoke of paper handkerchiefs and paper towels, which are also on the list, and he made a distinction there, but of course the reduction also includes clocks, watches, utility fur coats and kitchen furniture, and we are quite sure it would be inequitable to select one of these commodities and to make a concession for that commodity alone. I think that if I were to confine my remarks strictly to radio sets that would be the whole argument on which I should have to rest the case. However, I think that since my argument is that we cannot make this concession for radios in this way without making it for other goods, it would probably be for the convenience of the House if I stated the difficulty a little more widely.

We all approach this problem with the wish to overcome the difficulty, as did the hon. Member for Chippenham and the other hon. Gentlemen who have spoken; and I must say candidly that I approached it in that way myself. The more one looks into this proposed solution, however, the more impracticable, I am afraid, it turns out to be. In the first place, the difficulty arises inevitably from the decision which we made—I think in accordance with the wishes of most hon. Members—to make this reduction in tax. The hon. Member for Chippenham spoke of the Chancellor's mistake. I think the right course in these matters is to listen to what the House or Committee of the House wishes, and to make our final decisions in the light of the views of the House. It is an inevitable consequence of any reduction in Purchase Tax made in the light of those discussions that this difficulty should arise; and the only way of getting rid of the difficulty altogether would be to restore the former higher rate of tax.

I am not sure whether the hon. Member quite realised that, of course, the difficulty applies not merely to reductions of Purchase Tax made in the course of the Budget Debate but applies to all reductions of Purchase Tax on all articles in all Budgets, where precisely the same problem in the reduction of the tax on stocks occurs. All former Governments and all former Chancellors—with one exception which I will deal with in a moment—have come to the conclusion, after the most prolonged joint examination of this problem by the Customs and Excise and retail organisations, that no solution can be found.

I should like to set out ac well as I can just what the practical difficulty is. It arises from the point which the hon. Member for Chippenham himself explained, that, of course, if the wholesaler is to be given the right to recover from the Crown the money he has paid, the retailer must have the same right to recover it from the wholesaler, and the public, who have actually paid the higher price, must have the same right to recover from the retailer. That can only be done if there is a written record of every transaction, including the transactions between the retailers and the public. Unfortunately, when we are dealing with thousands of articles, including paper towels and handkerchiefs, and clocks and accessories for clocks and watches, radio sets, and kitchen furniture, we find that such records often do not exist.

There is a further complication that the refund would have to apply, not to all the goods the public bought during the interim period, but only to those goods which the wholesaler sold to the retailer since the increase in Purchase Tax, and on which the higher tax had been paid; and, of course, the public would think that all the goods they had bought in the interim period ought to share in the refund. That would be a further source of confusion. The hon. Member may argue that, though that may be true of smaller and less identifiable objects, it is not true of radio sets because they are more identifiable and expensive, and also because they have a serial number. But we are not dealing only with radio sets; we are also dealing with valves and other things which would be sold separately, and if we made a concession for the sets we should have to make it for the valves also. Nor, as I suggested before, do we think it possible to leave out other items such as clocks and furniture.

4.15 p.m.

My hon. Friend the Member for Bexley (Mr. Bramall) mentioned electric and gas cookers, on which a concession was made last year. But that argument, actually, tells the other way. The gas and electric cookers were a case in which this refund should, if anywhere, have been administratively practicable, for they are large objects and expensive, and they are easily identifiable, and one might have expected records to have been kept of them. However, our experience last year showed, in fact, that it was a very unhappy experiment which nobody responsible for administrative efficiency would wish to repeat. The public expected to be refunded for any cooker bought in the interim period. The retailers, naturally, and quite rightly, refused to give the refund in any case where they bought the cookers before the Budget.

A dispute thereupon followed between the retailers and the members of the public who had bought the cookers, and quite a number of people wrote to Customs and Excise calling upon them to umpire in the dispute, which, of course, they were unable to do because the evidence did not exist. A good deal of confusion did, unfortunately, result, in the course of which, almost certainly, some purchasers got money who ought not to have got it, and some money which was remitted by the Crown in fact never got into the hands of the people who ought to have had it. For all these reasons experience does show that this concession simply is not practicable.

In addition to that, one must not overestimate the degree of loss or hardship which is incurred by retailers as a result of this difficulty. In the first place, of course most retailers sell a large number of lines of goods on only some of which the tax will be reduced at any one time. In the second place, it does not necessarily follow that, when the tax is reduced, it becomes impossible to sell the goods at the price including the tax which has been paid. That is certainly sometimes so, though admittedly by no means always. It may be argued, as the hon. Member for Chippenham argued, that that is not so with radio sets. I think that is why he selected radio sets—because, he says, there will undoubtedly be a large loss because it clearly has not been and will not be possible for the retailers to sell the sets bought earlier at the higher price. However, when we look into the actual size of the loss in the retail trade I do not think it is as large as has been suggested.

The fact is that during the period when there was public argument going on about the Purchase Tax—between the Budget and my right hon. and learned Friend's decision to make a concession—sales to the retailers from the manufacturers fell very heavily indeed. The hon. Member for Chippenham questioned that. However, overwhelming evidence was furnished to us during the interim period—by the manufacturers, in particular, but it was borne out by other sections of the trade—that purchases by retailers had almost entirely dried up; and I must say that it was the evidence furnished to us on that point that was one of the considerations which we had very much in mind in deciding to grant the concession on the tax.

I do not think anybody who has knowledge of the radio trade will deny that very few sets were bought by retailers at the 66⅔ per cent. rate. It is true, as the hon. Member also pointed out, that considerable stocks of sets did exist, and probably still do exist, which were bought at the 50 per cent. rate between the November Budget up to 9th April, and it may well be true that retailers will now have to sell sets at a price corresponding to the 33⅔ per cent. rate which bore tax at the 50 per cent. rate, but even if they are compelled to do that on a large number of sets they will not incur a net loss on those sets because the amount of tax is very much less than the normal retailer's margin.

I believe it is the general case that on a set which sells to the public at £15, the cost to the retailer is only £10 That is to say, his profit margin amounts to about £5 out of £15. The difference between the tax at 50 per cent. and the tax at 33⅓ per cent. works out at only £1 13s., which is about one-third of his normal profit margin; so, if the retailer is compelled to sell under these conditions, he will not be suffering an out-of-pocket loss on these sets, but will be making for a time only about two-thirds of his normal profit margin. I am sure that if the radio retailers had to choose between retaining the higher rate of tax, with its obvious discouragement of sales, whilst overcoming this difficulty, or enjoying the stimulus to sales which will follow from the reduction, whilst having meanwhile to put up with this temporary reduction in profit, they would choose the latter alternative. The fact is that by the reduction in tax to 33⅓ per cent., we have given a very great stimulus and benefit to the whole trade—manufacturer, wholesaler and retailer. I am sure that the retailer would on balance prefer this course with its inevitable consequences, and for those reasons I must recommend this course to the House.

Mr. Oliver Stanley (Bristol, West)

I think that my hon. Friends are extremely disappointed at the reply of the Economic Secretary. I would make it plain that it is not the fault of my hon. Friends or myself that this discussion is limited to radio sets. We had a new Clause on the Order Paper which would have dealt with matters in a wider aspect, and I think that probably the brief which the hon. Gentleman was studying was directed to answering that new Clause which would have been moved had we been fortunate enough to catch your eye, Mr. Speaker. We are, therefore, limited in this Amendment to the question of radio sets.

There is nothing exceptional, as I am sure the hon. Gentleman himself will admit, in taking one particular article and in attempting in the case of that article to remedy an admitted injustice. That was done last year by the predecessor of the present Chancellor of the Exchequer with heaters. It was done, as the hon. Gentleman says, because it was thought that that case was easier to administer than others, and similarly we believe that to be so with radio sets. Nothing that the hon. Gentleman has said in his argument has destroyed our case that the unfortunate manufacturers have suffered a loss which they ought never to have incurred. It is all very well for the hon. Gentleman to talk about the great stimulus which the Government are giving to sales, by the reduction in the duty, but we must not forget that that follows on the great handicap which the Government in April placed upon the manufacturer and the retailer by actually increasing the rate of duty which the Government now propose to reduce.

I emphasise that this is an exceptional case. It is not the type of case which we have had before in the Budget proposals, where a rate of duty has been left unchanged, to be reduced afterwards as a result of discussion in Committee. Here the rate of duty had been heavily increased in the Budget Resolutions, and-we were afterwards in Committee told that not only has that increase been abandoned but an actual decrease is to be made. The loss which these people have suffered now need never have occurred. The stimulus and the need for the stimulus to this industry might have been recognised by the Government in April, before the discussions in Committee had taken place. Grateful as we are to the Chancellor of the Exchequer for listening to our views, we should have been more grateful had he observed the facts of the situation before April and prevented this situation from arising, in which retailers suffered a loss due to the Government's action which need never, and should never, have taken place. It is, I submit, the prime duty of the Government to restore if they possibly can the loss which they themselves created. There was nothing in the speech of the hon. Gentleman which convinced us on this side that a really genuine effort was being made to meet the loss in respect of which they cannot absolve themselves from all responsibility.

It may be that the bold experiment—but an experiment which this House welcomed—which was made by the Chancellor of the Exchequer last year in a similar case to try and undo some of the mischief done then, has not turned out completely successful in detail, but, surely, the answer of the present Chancellor should not have been weakly to abandon the effort of his predecessor, but to see whether he could not have improved upon it, and to have used the experience gained over the heaters last year to introduce, in respect of this article, a new arrangement which would have been satisfactory.

We have been confronted in this case, as so often throughout discussions in this Debate, and particularly in the discussions on the Special Contribution, with admitted cases of hardship and injustice, with no attempt whatever from the Government Benches to defend them or to pretend that they are not unjust or hard—merely a refuge always in the administrative inconvenience of trying to promote justice for the individual. We, on this occasion, shall once again register in the Lobby our protest against the attitude of mind of the Treasury which today appears to place administrative convenience far beyond the dictates of justice or the needs of the individual.

Sir Peter Bennett (Birmingham, Edgbaston)

On previous occasions I warned the Chancellor of the Exchequer that this sort of thing would happen, and on each occasion the same story has been repeated—that there are not enough brains in the Treasury to find a way of handling it. On each occasion I said that I had greater confidence in their administrative capacity than apparently the Chancellor has. I once more come back to that, because I am quite sure we shall have these things occurring again in the future. I am sure that they will continue to happen because we are not going to have a level of Purchase Tax which will never be altered.

The day will come when those representing the workers will be told that if it were not for the Purchase Tax, goods could be sold that are not being sold, and the cry will come from Members representing working class constituencies, "Our men are out of work because of your Purchase Tax." When the Purchase Tax is reduced we shall have this problem again. I urge the Chancellor not to put it on one side and forget it. It is coming back like a boomerang. The Government may talk glibly about the retailer selling these sets and making a little less profit than he would otherwise have done. The retailer has very heavy expenses to pay, and he relies on the profit margin which he has worked out.

4.30 p.m.

The Purchase Tax on such things as motor cars is very substantial. I have been looking up my records, and as far as I remember, the tax ranges from £60 for the cheapest car to over £2,000 for the most expensive car. What hope is there of an industry carrying on when the dealers are faced with a Purchase Tax of between £ and £2,000? They will not order, and the industry will be brought to a standstill. Once more I warn the Chancellor that this problem must be thought out. We shall not let it rest, because in his interests, in the interests of the revenue, of the workers and of the retailers, this problem must be thought out and a solution found.

Mr. Hollis (Devizes)

I should like, in a few sentences, to put before the House what seems to me to be the issue. There has been no denial by the Economic Secretary that there is an essential justice in this request, and, if my right hon. Friend the Member for West Bristol (Mr. Stanley) will forgive me for saying so, the Government cannot put forward the plea of administrative inconvenience. The Economic Secretary simply cannot shelter himself behind the argument which my hon. Friend the Member for Chippenham (Mr. Eccles) specifically hoped he would not use, that this injustice cannot be remedied, that justice cannot be done to one person, if justice cannot be done

to everybody. (That argument would make sense only if it could be shown that the rest of the community would somehow suffer if this concession were made. One can imagine certain cases where, if a concession is made to a few people, it is to the disadvantage of the rest of the community. But it cannot be shown that the person who has purchased a handkerchief will be worse off if a person who has purchased a radio set gets a little bit of money back. Why, because it is impossible to refund the handkerchief purchaser, should it, therefore, be impossible to refund the radio purchaser? There is only one conceivable argument upon which the Government could rest their case, and that was torn to shreds by the Economic Secretary himself. The only conceivable argument would be that the amount of money involved was so large that it would upset the whole of the Government's budgetary arrangements; but the Economic Secretary made mincemeat of that argument when he admitted that the amount of money involved would be very small.

Question put, "That the words proposed to be left out stand part of the proposed Amendment."

The House divided: Ayes, 256; Noes, 129.

Division No. 235.] AYES. [4.36 p.m.
Adams, W. T. (Hammersmith, South) Champion, A. J. Evans, Albert (Islington, W.)
Alpass, J. H. Chater, D. Evans, E. (Lowestoft)
Attewell, H. C. Chetwynd, G. R. Evans, S. N. (Wednesbury)
Awbery, S. S. Cluse, W. S. Ewart, R.
Ayles, W. H. Cocks, F. S. Fairhurst, F.
Ayrton Gould, Mrs. B. Coldrick, W. Farthing, W. J.
Bacon, Miss A. Collindridge, F. Fernyhough, E.
Balfour, A. Collins, V. J. Foot, M. M.
Barnes, Rt. Hon. A. J. Colman, Miss G. M. Fraser, T. (Hamilton)
Barstow, P. G. Cook, T. F. Freeman, Peter (Newport)
Barton, C. Cooper, Wing-Comdr, G. Gallacher, W.
Battley, J. R. Cove, W. G. Ganley, Mrs. C. S.
Bechervaise, A. E. Crawley, A. Gibbins, J.
Belcher, J. W. Cripps, Rt. Hon. Sit S. Gibson, C. W.
Benson, G. Crossman, R. H. S. Gilzean, A.
Berry, H. Daggar, G. Glanville, J. E. (Consett)
Beswick, F. Daines, P. Gooch, E. G.
Bing, G. H. C. Davies, Edward (Burslem) Gordon-Walker, P. C.
Binns, J. Davies, Ernest (Enfield) Greenwood, A. W. J. (Heywood)
Blackburn, A. R. Davies, Harold (Leek) Grenfell, D. R.
Blyton, W. R. Davies, Haydn (St. Pancras, S.W.) Grey, C. F.
Bowles, F. G. (Nuneaton) Davies, R. J. (Westhoughton) Griffiths, D. (Rother Valley)
Braddock, Mrs. E. M. (L'pl. Exch'ge) Deer, G. Griffiths, W. D. (Moss Side)
Braddock, T. (Mitcham) de Freitas, Geoffrey Guest, Dr. L. Haden
Bramall, E. A. Delargy, H. J. Gunter, R. J.
Brook, D. (Halifax) Dobbie, W. Guy, W. H.
Brooks, T. J. (Rothwell) Dodds, N. N. Hall, Rt. Hon. Glenvil
Brown, T. J. (Ince) Donovan, T. Hamilton, Lieut.-Col. R.
Bruce, Maj. D. W. T. Dugdale, J. (W. Bromwich) Hannan, W. (Maryhill)
Buchanan, Rt. Hon. G. Dye, S. Hardman, D. R.
Burden, T. W. Ede, Rt. Hon. J. C. Hardy, E. A.
Burke, W. A. Edwards, Rt. Hon. Sir C. (Bedwellty) Harrison, J.
Carmichael, James Edwards, John (Blackburn) Haworth, J.
Chamberlain, R. A. Edwards, W. J. (Whitechapel) Henderson, Joseph (Ardwick)
Herbison, Miss M. Manning, C. (Camberwell, N.) Solley, L. J.
Hicks, G. Manning, Mrs. L. (Epping) Sorensen, R. W.
Holman, P. Marquand, H. A. Soskice, Rt. Hon. Sir Frank
Holmes, H. E. (Hemsworth) Marshall, F. (Brightside) Sparks, J. A.
Horabin, T. L. Mathers, Rt. Hon. George Stross, Dr. B.
House, G. Mellish, R. J. Stubbs, A. E.
Hoy, J. Middleton, Mrs. L. Swingler, S.
Hubbard, T. Mikardo, Ian Sylvester, G. O.
Hudson, J. H. (Ealing, W.) Millington, Wing-Comdr E. R. Symonds, A. L.
Hughes, Emrys (S. Ayr) Mitchison, G. R. Taylor, R. J. (Morpeth)
Hughes, Hector (Aberdeen, N.) Monslow, W. Taylor, Dr. S. (Barnet)
Hughes, H. D. (W'lverh'pton, W.) Morrison, Rt. Hon. H. (Lewisham, E.) Thomas, D. E. (Aberdare)
Hynd, H. (Hackney, C.) Moyle, A. Thomas, George (Cardiff)
Hynd, J. B. (Attercliffe) Murray J. D. Thomas, I. O. (Wrekin)
Irvine, A. J. (Liverpool) Nally, W. Thorneycroft, Harry (Clayton)
Janner, B. Neal, H. (Clay Cross) Thurtle, Ernest
Jay, D. P. T. Nichol, Mrs. M. E. (Bradford, N.) Tiffany, S.
Jeger, G. (Winchester) Nicholls, H. R. (Stratford) Timmons, J.
Jeger, Dr. S. W. (St. Pancras, S.E.) Noel-Buxton, Lady Titterington, M. F.
Jenkins, R. H. O'Brien, T. Tolley, L.
Jones, D. T. (Hartlepools) Oldfield, W. H. Usborne, Henry
Jones, Elwyn (Plaistow) Oliver, G. H. Vernon, Maj. W. F.
Jones, J. H. (Bolton) Paton, Mrs. F. (Rushcliffe) Viant, S. P.
Jones, P. Asterley (Hitchin) Paton, J. (Norwich) Walker, G. H.
Keenan, W. Peart, T. F. Wallace, G. D. (Chislehurst)
Kenyon, C. Platts-Mills, J. F. F. Warbey, W. N.
Key, Rt. Hon. C. W. Poole, Cecil (Lichfield) Watkins, T. E.
Kinley, J. Popplewell, E. Watson, W. M.
Kirkwood, Rt. Hon. D. Porter, E. (Warrington) Weitzman, D.
Lang, G. Porter, G. (Leeds) Wells, P. L. (Faversham)
Lawson, Rt. Hon. J. J. Pryde, D. J. Wells, W. T. (Walsall)
Lee, F. (Hulme) Pursey, Comdr. H. Westwood, Rt. Hon. J.
Lee, Miss J. (Cannock) Randall, H. E. Wheatley, Rt. Hn. John (Edinb'gh, E.)
Leonard, W. Ranger, J. White, C. F. (Derbyshire, W.)
Lever, N. H. Rankin, J. White, H. (Derbyshire, N.E.)
Levy, B. W. Reeves, J. Whiteley, Rt. Hon. W.
Lewis, J. (Bolton) Reid, T. (Swindon) Wigg, George
Lipton, Lt.-Col. M. Rhodes, H. Wilkins, W. A.
Logan, D. G. Ridealgh, Mrs. M. Willey, O. G. (Cleveland)
Longden, F. Rogers, G. H. R. Williams, J. L. (Kelvingrove)
Lyne, A. W. Ross, William (Kilmarnock) Williams, R. W. (Wigan)
McEntee, V. La T. Royle, C. Williams, W. R. (Heston)
McGhee, H. G. Scollan, T. Willis, E.
McGovern, J. Scott-Elliott, W. Woodburn, Rt. Hon. A.
Mack, J. D. Shackleton, E. A. A. Woods, G. S.
McKay, J. (Wallsend) Sharp, Granville Yates, V. F.
Mackay, R. W. G. (Hull, N.W.) Shurmer, P. Young, Sir R. (Newton)
McKinley, A. S. Silverman, J. (Erdington) Younger, Hon. Kenneth
McLeavy, F. Simmons, C. J.
Mainwaring, W. H. Skeffington, A. M. TELLERS FOR THE AYES:
Mallalieu, E. L. (Brigg) Skinnard, F. W. Mr. Pearson and
Mallalieu, J. P. W. (Huddersfield) Smith, Ellis (Stoke) Mr. Richard Adams.
Mann, Mrs. J. Snow, J. W.
Agnew, Cmdr. P. G. Digby, S. W. Jarvis, Sir J.
Amory, D. Heathcoat Dodds-Parker, A. D. Jeffreys, General Sir G.
Anderson, Rt. Hn. Sir J. (Scot Univ.) Donner, P. W. Keeling, E. H.
Assheton, Rt. Hon. R. Drewe, C. Lambert, Hon. G.
Astor, Hon. M. Dugdale, Maj. Sir T. (Richmond) Langford-Holt, J.
Baldwin, A. E. Eccles, D. M. Law, Rt. Hon. R. K.
Barlow, Sir J. Eden, Rt. Hon. A. Lennox-Boyd, A. T.
Bennett, Sir P. Fletcher, W. (Bury) Lipson, D. L.
Birch, Nigel Fraser H. C. P. (Stone) Lloyd, Maj. Guy (Renfrew, E.)
Boles, Lt.-Col. D. C. (Wells) Fraser, Sir I. (Lonsdale) Lloyd, Selwyn (Wirral)
Bossom, A. C. Galbraith, Cmdr. T. D. Lucas, Major Sir J.
Boyd-Carpenter, J. A. Gammans, L. D. Lucas-Tooth, Sir H.
Braithwaite, Lt.-Comdr. J. G. Gates, Maj. E. E. MacAndrew, Col. Sir C.
Bromley-Davenport, Lt.-Col. W. Glyn, Sir R. Macdonald, Sir P. (I. of Wight)
Buchan-Hepburn, P. G. T. Grant, Lady Mackeson, Brig. H. R.
Bullock, Capt. M. Granville, E. (Eye) McKie, J. H. (Galloway)
Byers, Frank Grimston, R. V. Maclay, Hon. J. S.
Challen, C. Gruffydd, Prof. W. J. Macpherson, N. (Dumfries)
Channon, H. Harden, J. R. E. Manningham-Buller, R. E.
Clarke, Col. R. S. Harris, F. W. (Croydon, N.) Marlowe, A. A. H.
Clifton-Brown, Lt.-Col. G. Harvey, Air-Comdre. A. V. Marsden, Capt. A.
Cooper-Key, E. M. Headlam, Lieut.-Col. Rt. Hon. Sir C. Marshall, D. (Bodmin)
Crookshank, Capt. Rt. Hon. H. F. C. Henderson, John (Cathcart) Marshall, S. H. (Sutton)
Crosthwaite-Eyre, Col. O. E. Hinchingbrooke, Viscount Mellor, Sir J.
Crowder, Capt. John E. Hollis, M. C. Morris, Hopkin (Carmarthen)
Cuthbert, W. N. Holmes, Sir J. Stanley (Harwich) Neven-Spence, Sir B.
Davidson, Viscountess Hutchison, Lt.-Cm. Clark (E'b'rgh W.) Nicholson, G.
De la Bère R. Hutchison, Col. J. R. (Glasgow, C.) Noble, Comdr. A. H. P.
Nutting, Anthony Robinson, Roland Turton, R. H.
Odey, G. W. Ross, Sir R. D. (Londonderry) Vane, W. M. F.
Orr-Ewing, I. L. Savory, Prof. D. L. Wadsworth, G.
Osborne, C. Smith, E. P. (Ashford) Wakefield, Sir W. W.
Peaks, Rt. Hon. O. Smithers, Sir W. Ward, Hon. G. R.
Peto, Brig. C. H. M. Spearman, A. C. M. Watt, Sir G. S. Harvie
Pickthorn, K. Spence, H. R. Webbe, Sir H. (Abbey)
Pitman, I. J. Stanley, Rt. Hon. O. Wheatley, Colonel M. J. (Dorset, E.)
Ponsonby, Col. C. E. Stewart, J. Henderson (Fife E.) Williams, C. (Torquay)
Poole, O. B. S. (Oswestry) Stoddart-Scott, Col. M. Williams, Gerald (Tonbridge)
Prior-Palmer, Brig. O. Studholme, H. G. Willoughby de Eresby, Lord
Ramsay, Maj. S. Sutcliffe, H. York, C.
Rayner, Brig. R. Taylor, C. S. (Eastbourne)
Reed, Sir S. (Aylesbury) Taylor, Vice-Adm. E. A. (P'dd't'n, S.) TELLERS FOR THE NOES:
Reid, Rt. Hon. J. S. C. (Hillhead) Teeling, William Sir Arthur Young and
Renton, D. Thornton-Kemsley, C. N. Major Conant.
Roberts, P. G. (Ecclesall) Thorp, Brigadier R. A. F.

Proposed words there inserted in the Bill.