HC Deb 21 December 1954 vol 535 cc2588-9
37. Sir J. Lucas

asked the Minister of Works if he is aware that, since the abolition of coal fires in the Palace of Westminster, there is now no reasonable way for an hon. Member arriving from the country in a chilled condition to thaw out; and if he will arrange that there should be at least one such fire available.

The Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Works (Mr. J. R. Bevins)

The condition to which the hon. and gallant Member refers can be remedied without a coal fire. The Members' Writing Room off the Lower Waiting Hall is kept at a temperature of 69 degrees Fahrenheit by central heating, and if hon. Members want more heat there is also an electric fire there.

Sir J. Lucas

Is the Minister aware that the electric fires have no heat whatever, that they have not got a heater, and that the only way in which a Member can get warm in a hurry is either to sit on a radiator or have a hot bath? Could he not have a small electric heater put in the Members' Cloakroom, to be switched on if required?

Mr. Bevins

No, Sir; I am afraid that my hon. Friend is misinformed. If the electric fire is switched on, the temperature can be raised to 75 degrees Fahrenheit very quickly, which I should have thought was good enough to thaw out anyone.

Mr. Chetwynd

Could not the hon. Gentleman solve the problem if he took a run round the Terrace or in New Palace Yard until he got warm?