HC Deb 13 December 1950 vol 482 cc1148-9
47. Brigadier Rayner

asked the Lord President of the Council if he will make it a condition of all leases of restaurants in the Festival of Britain exhibition proper that only British and Empire wines, spirits, meads, liqueurs, beers and ciders shall be displayed and sold.

The Lord President of the Council (Mr. Herbert Morrison)

No, Sir.

Brigadier Rayner

Will the right hon. Gentleman reconsider the matter? Is it not the whole aim and object of "Operation Festival" to boost everything British? According to my information, a great deal of French wine has been laid in already?

Mr. Morrison

The statement made in that supplementary question is partly true; but it is also a purpose of the Festival to illustrate the British way of life and, as far as I know, the British way of life includes the drinking of French and other wines. Why we should go fraudulent and "phoney" when we exhibit ourselves to the rest of the world. I do not know.

Mr. James Hudson

Will my right hon. Friend bear in mind that we are trying to advance the British way of life, and that there is a very considerable number of people in Britain who do not need alcoholic beverages at all?

Mr. Morrison

I must confess that, for the moment, I had forgotten my hon. Friend, and I am very glad that he has reminded me of himself. I can assure him that there will be adequate supplies of mineral waters and of Metropolitan Water Board water as well.

Lieut.-Commander Gurney Braithwaite

Will the right hon. Gentleman endeavour to see that, when he and his friends are consuming these expensive French wines they do not do so when "dripping with furs"?

Mr. Morrison

The House recognises that the hon. and gallant Gentleman is one of our most crude party political propagandists, both inside and outside the House and on the wireless, and the House will take him at his relative importance.

Mr. J. Hynd

Will my right hon. Friend equally refute any suggestion that the food sold at the Festival should be confined to home-grown foods, or that all the manufactured goods displayed should be made from home-produced raw materials?

Mr. Morrison

I do not think my hon. Friend's question is quite relevant to the original Question. As to the consumption of foreign wines, I could bet on which side of the House the greater proportion would go.

Brigadier Rayner

Will the right hon. Gentleman endeavour to see that other British liquors, including mead, get a fair show?

Mr. Morrison

We will consider that.

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