HC Deb 15 December 1955 vol 547 c1392
48. Mr. H. Hynd

asked the Prime Minister whether he has noted the resolution passed by the General Purposes Committee of the Free Church Federal Council on the subject of disestablishment, as sent to him by the hon. Member for Accrington; and whether he is prepared to have a friendly discussion on this subject as it suggests.

Mr. R. A. Butler

I have been asked to reply.

The Free Church Federal Council has forwarded to my right hon. Friend a copy of its Resolution, for which he is grateful. From the Resolution it appears that this is a matter for friendly discussion between the Free Churches and the Church of England.

Mr. Hynd

Has the right hon. Gentleman noticed that the Free Church Council, in its resolution, made it clear that it has never wavered in its opposition to any form of State control of church and spiritual affairs? Did not the Prime Minister in his recent statement in the House tend to give a contrary impression? Does not the resolution ask for discussion, not with the Church of England, but with the Prime Minister?

Mr. Butler

No, Sir, I think that if we refer to the text of the resolution we find that it is said that the Free Church Council would welcome an opportunity for friendly discussion on the whole situation. It is the view of the Prime Minister that such a discussion should precede any further action.