§ 35. Mr. Remnant
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he is aware that the increase in proceedings and convictions for drunkenness in Carlisle from 35 proceedings and 30 convictions in 1948 to 68 and 64, respectively, for 1949 are higher than the average increases throughout the country; and what steps he is taking in view of these facts.
§ Mr. Ede
Over a period of years Carlisle in the matter of convictions for drunkenness has a favourable record compared with other county boroughs of similar characteristics and population. It is true that in 1949 the figures in Carlisle showed a considerable increase over those for 1948, but the figures for 1948 were themselves comparatively on the low side. The whole situation has recently been reviewed by the licensing justices in consultation with the Chief Constable and the general manager at Carlisle, and I do not think that any special steps are called for on my part.
§ Mr. Remnant
Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that during the period when his Department published statistics in connection with Carlisle, the State management area was never in the better half of the 85 county boroughs? In view of that, and the figures I have given, will the Home Secretary agree that the State management system is no more successful than any other system in establishing that standard of sobriety which we all desire?
§ Mr. Walker-Smith
Would the right hon. Gentleman say what is the meaning of "characteristics" within the context of his first answer?
§ Lieut.-Commander Gurney Braithwaite
Does not the right hon. Gentleman think it significant that this increase 1348 in drunkenness in Carlisle coincided with the passage of the Licencing Bill last year, and is probably due to the customers in the State public houses getting drunk in sympathy with the forthcoming fate of those in the new towns?
§ Mr. Chetwynd
Is it not more likely that in this case the increase in drunkenness was among people from outside, who went in to see what it was like and could not take the strong beer?