HC Deb 04 November 1952 vol 507 cc4-6
Mr. Speaker

I have to acquaint the House that this House has this day attended Her Majesty in the House of Peers, and Her Majesty was pleased to make a Most Gracious Speech from the Throne to both Houses of Parliament, of which I have, for greater accuracy, obtained a copy, which is as follows:

My Lords and Members of the House of Commons:

On this first occasion when I speak to you in person as your Queen I gratefully acknowledge the sympathy which has been extended to Me and My Family from every part of the Commonwealth. By His selfless devotion to His duties as your Sovereign My Father set an example which it will be My constant endeavour to follow. I am well assured that My peoples everywhere will accord Me that same loyalty and understanding which ever supported Him in the service of His peoples.

I look forward with deep pleasure to fulfilling at the end of next year My long cherished hopes of visiting, in company with My dear Husband, My peoples in Australia, New Zealand and Ceylon.

I earnestly pray that in Korea an early armistice will be arranged. Until this is accomplished the continued participation of My Forces in this conflict will be clear proof of My Government's whole-hearted attachment to the ideals of the United Nations.

My Ministers are determined to make ever closer that co-operation with the other Members of the Commonwealth and with the Colonial Empire which must be the keystone of our policy. To this end they have invited Commonwealth Prime Ministers to meet together this month to confer on vital problems of finance, commerce and economic policy.

My Government will continue to take their full share in the work of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation as the bulwark of Western defence and the embodiment of the common aspirations of the Atlantic Community. Within that Community and in every other way they will seek to maintain the closest and most friendly relations with the Government and people of the United Slates of America.

It will be My Government's aim to strengthen the unity of Europe. They will work in close association with our neighbours in Western Europe and give all possible support to their efforts to forge closer links with one another.

My Ministers will continue to work for the conclusion of an Austrian State Treaty and for a fair and equitable settlement of the problem of German unity.

Active measures will be taken to strengthen the long-standing ties of friendship and of mutual trade between the United Kingdom and the countries of Latin America.

Further consideration will be given to the draft scheme for federation in Central Africa. For this purpose My Government have invited the three Central African Governments to a further conference in London in January.

My Ministers will continue the rearmament of My Forces and the development of the Civil Defence organisation, with due regard to the need for maintaining economic strength and stability.

Members of the House of Commons:

The estimates for public services will be laid before you in due course.

My Lords and Members of the House of Commons:

My Government will proceed resolutely with the task of placing the national economy on a sound foundation. They will not hesitate to take any further steps necessary to hold and improve the more favourable position now reached in our overseas payments.

My Ministers will encourage all engaged in agriculture, mining and industry to co-operate in increasing productive efficiency and thus to produce at lower cost the goods needed at home and by the export trades.

In the interests of the employment and the standard of living of My people, My Government will persevere with measures to curb inflation and to reduce the heavy load of Government expenditure.

A steadily increasing number of houses will be built under My Government's programme.

Bills will be laid before you for the reorganisation of the Iron and Steel Industry and to provide for changes in the Transport Industry.

Further measures will be promoted relating to the Town and Country Planning Acts of 1947, to Local Government superannuation and to the date for depositing new rating valuation lists.

The question of the supply of electricity in Scotland is being attentively examined with a view to legislation.

A Bill will be introduced to make certain changes within the framework of the Education Acts in the law affecting voluntary schools.

My Government will continue to give every encouragement to the fishing industry. A Bill will be laid before you to provide financial help for the building of fishing vessels.

Proposals will be made to you for improving the maternity benefits of the National Insurance Scheme and also for the further amendment of the National Insurance (Industrial Injuries) Act.

My Ministers will propose an extension of the existing temporary Acts on leasehold property in England and Wales and in Scotland and will seek an opportunity of making known their policy on this subject.

Other measures will be laid before you in due course.

I pray that the blessing of Almighty God will rest upon your counsels.

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