HC Deb 20 March 1952 vol 497 c2524
5. Mr. Shepherd

asked the President of the Board of Trade if he is aware that all Government Departments are exempted from inspection by weights and measures Inspectors under the Weights and Measures Act, 1878; and whether, in view of the unsatisfactory position which this creates, he will introduce legislation to rescind the Section which exempts scales which are the property of a Government Department from inspection.

Mr. P. Thorneycroft

This exemption arises out of a judicial decision under the 1878 Act. All Government Departments are being asked to consider arrangements for the periodical inspection of their scales by inspectors of weights and measures. We propose to proceed in this way rather than by amending the legislation.

Mr. Shepherd

While this represents some progress, does not my right hon. Friend think that it is inadequate, since there is no power under the proposal for weights and measures inspectors to issue a summons against a Government Department for defrauding the public by using false scales?

Mr. Thorneycroft

I appreciate that the answer does not go as far as my hon. Friend desires, but it goes a very substantial way to meet his point.