HC Deb 17 December 1954 vol 535 cc2289-91
Mr. Shinwell

May I ask the Leader of the House whether he has any statement to make on business?

The Lord Privy Seal (Mr. Harry Crookshank)

Yes, Sir; I have an alteration of business to announce, as follows:—

Monday, 20TH DECEMBER—We shall resume the consideration of the Draft Parliamentary Constituency Orders and hope to finish them at a reasonable hour.

Tuesday, 21ST DECEMBER—We shall consider the Motion to approve the Draft National Assistance (Determination of Need) Amendment Regulations, which it is hoped to obtain by about 9 o'clock.

Afterwards, we shall consider the Motions to approve:

Town and Country Planning (Minerals) Regulations, and similar Regulations for Scotland.

Two Draft Lace Industry Orders.

It is necessary for us to obtain the Draft Parliamentary Constituency Orders and the Draft National Assistance Regulations before the Christmas Adjournment.

As the House is aware, we contemplate adjourning on Wednesday, 22nd December. I hope that this will still be possible and that it will not be necessary to make any further alterations in business for next week.

We would like to dispose of the Motions to set up the Select Committee on Estimates and the Joint Committee on Private Bill Procedure and obtain the Second Readings of the three Army and Air Force Bills also, but this may not now be possible.

Mr. Warbey

As one of those who earlier this morning made a protest against the action of the right hon. Gentleman in moving the Adjournment of the House, may I now thank him for the consideration he has shown for the convenience of hon. Members in making it possible for the Constituency Orders to be debated at a reasonable time?

Mr. Crookshank

I am obliged to the hon. Member. He can take it from me that that has always been my intention, and especially after last night's late sitting.

Mr. Emrys Hughes

Is the Lord Privy Seal not wildly optimistic about Monday's business? There are the Parliamentary Constituency Orders, and then it is proposed to take the National Assistance Regulations. [HON. MEMBERS: "No."] I am sorry; that is on Tuesday. The Leader of the House assumes that the National Assistance Regulations will be finished by 9 o'clock, but after 9 o'clock there is to be an important matter affecting Scotland.

Scottish Members are bitterly indignant about the way that the House treats them. [An HON. MEMBER: "Where were they last night?"] Here is an important matter affecting Scotland which, as an afterthought, will be put at the tag end of business. Scottish Members are not so much interested in Christmas—they do not start their holidays until the New Year—and I suggest that the House should not be too anxious to rush this. There is another day available before Christmas if the English Members want to celebrate Christmas, but the Scottish Members are quite prepared to do their duty, if necessary, until the New Year.

Mr. J. N. Browne

Is my right hon. Friend aware that Scotland and Scottish Members are grateful that he had the Scottish Orders taken first and enabled Scotland to get its business satisfactorily completed?

Mr. H. Hynd

The Lord Privy Seal said that he hoped to get the Motion relating to the Estimates Committee and the other Motion some-time next week. Can he give any indication whether that is likely to be on Monday or Tuesday?

Mr. Crookshank

It entirely depends on how we get along. I had hoped to take it on Monday, but now that we have to continue with the Constituency Orders that might not be possible. We must see how we get along. If we do not get the Motion, the Committee will have to be set up when we return in January.

Mr. Patrick Maitland

Is my right hon. Friend aware that Scottish Members on this side of the House do not approve of the endeavour to exploit the situation to gain publicity for Scotland by making cheap remarks about Christmas?

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