§ 41. Mr. Wyatt
asked the President of the Board of Trade whether he will now make a statement on the booking of films 1957 for the Gaumont and Odeon cinema circuits through the single agency of the Circuits Management Association Limited, although this is contrary to the provisions of the Cinematograph Films Act, 1948
§ Mr. P. Thorneycroft
The booking of films by a single agency does not contravene the Act, and was expressly accepted by the right hon. Member' for Huyton (Mr. H. Wilson), as President of the Board of Trade, in 1948, subject to an undertaking that the effective booking strength of the two circuits would not be altered. I am satisfied from assurances that I have received from the J. Arthur Rank Organisation that that undertaking has been honoured, and that the arrangements provide no justification for the Board of Trade to refuse, under Section 5 (5, b) of the Cinematograph Films Act, 1948, to license those theatres.
§ Mr. Thorneycroft
The principle that the bookings should be under a single management was accepted by the right hon. Member for Huyton in the clearest possible terms.
§ Mr. Swingler
Would the Minister not get an independent person to investigate this situation instead of always taking his information from the very people against whom the accusations are made?