HC Deb 12 April 1956 vol 551 cc500-49
Mr. Mulley

I beg to move, in page 3, line 30, after "section", to insert: shall be full-time members who I do not wish to detain the Committee long over this point because, from all that we have heard and from the discussions we have had, I think it will be generally agreed that Court is likely to be fully occupied for a considerable time. In order to put the matter beyond doubt, we wish to insert these words in the Bill to ensure that the appointed lay members of the Court will be appointed full-time and will devote their whole attention to this work. In addition to the requirement that they should give their time fully to the work, their impartiality would be impaired if they held other appointments, particularly those in industry or commerce, where they might in some way be connected with firms or associations that come before the court. We should like an assurance from the Government that it is their intention that the appointed members shall be full-time members of the court.

Mr. Walker-Smith

It is quite true, as the hon. Gentleman indicates, that the Clause does not place any obligation upon the members being full-time. On the other hand, it is apprehended that the members of the English divisions of the Court will be whole-time. It is likely, however, that there will not be sufficient work in the Scottish and Northern Ireland courts for the divisions of those courts to be in whole-time session, and, for that reason, it is not convenient to put into the Bill a mandatory obligation that the members of the courts shall be full-time members. At the same time, I am very sensible of the point made by the hon. Gentleman that where we have to have part-time members, it will, of course, be important that those members—I am now referring to the lay members of the Court—Should not themselves be engaged in any commercial practices which would prevent them bringing an objective and independent view to bear upon the problems on which they have to adjudicate.

Sir L. Ungoed-Thomas

It is really a serious matter if we are to have part-time members in Scotland and if that is to be a regular practice. These members, according to the Bill, will be people with knowledge or experience of industry, commerce or public affairs, and, of course, every single one of these inquiries will involve principles which might affect the whole range of industry and commerce. If we are going to have part-time members, then, in so far as they are drawn from people engaged in industry or commerce, quite obviously there is the danger which the hon. and learned Gentleman has indicated that he seeks to avoid, namely, that they are people who will be affected by the decisions which they themselves will make.

This is a serious consideration. This Court has been presented throughout to this Committee as one which is going to be entirely authoritative and as something which is going to be above any kind of allegation that there is any bias or anything of that kind about it. I am sure that hon. Members on both sides of the House are extremely anxious that that should be so, but when we find that in the case of Scotland it is going to be the regular practice to have people drawn from industry and commerce with experience and knowledge of industry and commerce, then, of course, we are getting on to rather delicate ground.

It might be possible by exercising very great discretion in some individual case to choose a person who has knowledge or experience of industry or commerce and who, nevertheless, cannot possibly be affected by the decision given in a particular case. But when we are dealing, as we are here, with the constitution of a court dealing with this kind of matter, and as the President of the Board of Trade said earlier on, justice should not only be done, but should clearly be seen to be done. It really is not a desirable practice to have in a court of this kind part-time members.

We are not here dealing with assessors who are merely helping from their knowledge the judges who have to make the decision. We are here dealing with a court which is to be on the High Court level. This is not a minor tribunal but a court on a High Court level, yet the hon. and learned Gentleman says that in choosing our judges for decisions on matters at High Court level, matters of immense importance affecting the industry of this country, perhaps making far-reaching decisions which will establish precedents to be followed later, there should be part-time members.

9.15 p.m.

That is not good enough. I could understand it if we were told that it might be desirable in an emergency to have a part-time member. We might conceivably have said that it was not worth while pressing this Amendment if that had been the intention. But we are not told that. We are told that in the case of Scotland it is intended as a regular practice to have part-time members of a court on a High Court level. I do not know whether the Parliamentary Secretary can deal further with that point, but his answer so far is not satisfactory.

Mr. Walker-Smith

The hon. and learned Gentleman referred to the question of temporary members. If he will read further on in the Clause he will find that there is already a provision in that regard in subsection (3), in the case of a temporary absence or inability to sit. So there is already a provision for temporary membership in those circumstances and I apprehend that this is not dissented from.

In regard to Scotland and Northern Ireland, the hon. and learned Gentleman may be putting it a little high when he says that the intention necessarily is to have part-time members. I put it rather the other way and said it may well be that the work in those two divisions of the Court may not justify full-time members. With respect, the hon. and learned Gentleman has not addressed himself to what will be the solution if we do not adopt the course set out in the Bill.

There is the problem to which he has referred and which I do not want to minimise, that in order to fulfil the definition in subsection (1)— knowledge of or experience in industry, commerce or public affairs"— a person does not have to be at the time of his service in the Court a present practitioner in any of those realms. I do not want to be drawn into speculation as to the appointees under this Clause, but the Committee will appreciate that in the normal logic of events people who are actively engaged in any of those realms at the present time are less likely to be available for service in the Court than are people who have acquired their experience or knowledge by service in any one of these realms and then, having come into the Court, have ceased to be active practitioners in industry.

That is probably the practical answer. I assure the hon. and learned Gentleman that we have his point very much in mind, but I do not think that it will give rise to the difficulties to which he has referred.

Sir L. Ungoed-Thomas

May I press this point, because I am not satisfied with the reply. I appreciate the provision in subsection (3) in the case of a temporary requirement. That seems to us to be reasonable. But that is not the point which the hon. and learned Gentleman has made. His point was that in the case of Scotland it should be a regular practice to provide for part-time members only. The hon. and learned Gentleman said that it is possible under subsection (1) to choose a person who is not at the time engaged in industry or commerce. I think he recognises the difficulties and the danger of employing somebody, even as a part-time member, as a member of the Court who is actively engaged in industry or commerce. Is the hon. and learned Gentleman in a position to give the Committee an assurance that nobody will be appointed in the case of Scotland as, to use an almost contradictory term, a regular part-time member who is not actively engaged in industry or commerce?

Mr. Philip Bell

Surely the Monopolies Commission is not composed entirely of full-time members. Yet we have today heard a great deal of praise of the Commission. No one is suggesting that it is suffering because its members are not full-time. If we have great respect for the Commission in those circumstances, why should we not have respect for the Court merely because its members are not permanent? In any case, according to subsection (2) the appointment of the members in the first instance is for three years only, and in that sense theirs is a temporary appointment. The suggestion that the members must be treated like judges and be given life appointments does not stand examination in relation to the Monopolies Commission.

Mr. Roy Jenkins

I am not sure that the hon. and learned Member for Bolton, East (Mr. Philip Bell) has improved the Government's position by his interjection. I am not sure that his reference to the Monopolies Commission is particularly relevant. After all, we have constantly been told that that Court will be on a very different basis from that of the Monopolies Commission. The Court is intended to be quite independent of the Board of Trade; it will be quite free from parliamentary responsibility. That in itself is a very big difference.

Mr. Bell

The hon. Member hardly does me justice. We are comparing the integrity of the two institutions. It is fairly suggested that temporary members may not have the same atmosphere of integrity as permanent members, and I draw an analogy and say "What about those at present concerned with monopolies, for they are temporary and have been engaged in trade, though not in the trade into which they are inquiring?"

Mr. Jenkins

The hon. and learned Gentleman is making a great mistake if he is taking the point of view that one cannot challenge the fitness of individuals to hold an impartial position without also challenging their personal integrity. That is a view which I do not think he would wish to take, and I am sure the Committee would not wish to take it. It is possible for individuals of the highest personal honour not to be suitable for appointment to a position because of certain connections and experience. That is the view taken by the Parliamentary Secretary.

I do not think the hon. and learned Gentleman was particularly helpful to his Front Bench. The Parliamentary Secretary said that it was highly undesirable to have people serving even as part-time members in Scotland and Northern Ireland if they had current commitments in commerce or industry. That is the Government's expression of intention, and it runs completely counter to the view of the hon. and learned Member.

The difficulty I am left in, which to some extent is that of my hon. and learned Friend the Member for Leicester, North-East (Sir L. Ungoed-Thomas), is that I find it difficult to envisage what sort of individuals are to be appointed as Scottish and Northern Irish lay members of the Court. Who are these individuals who have knowledge of or experience in industry, commerce or public affairs but are no longer engaged in industry, commerce or public affairs? They are to be employed only as part-time members because, apparently, there would not be enough work to make it worth while paying them as full-time members. What will they do with the rest of their time?

I am sure that the Parliamentary Secretary wishes to meet the principle of the Amendment. There is not great clash of principle between him and my hon. Friend the Member for Sheffield, Park (Mr. Mulley), but his position is very difficult to accept, because it is extremely difficult to imagine what sort of individuals he has in mind, unless he intends to have retired individuals. I am not sure that retired individuals are especially suitable. I am not sure that we want people serving as lay members on the Restrictive Trade Practices Court when they have become too exhausted to serve in industry, commerce or public affairs. If they have become exhausted, they might lack keenness of mind to be fully effective in the Court, although if they have accumulated prejudices in the course of their lifetime's work they will retain the prejudices without retaining the ability they had when they were actively engaged in their work. We are, therefore, liable to get the worst of all worlds from this point of view.

I appeal to the Parliamentary Secretary to give us one of two undertakings. One is to accept the Amendment. When we are asked to take the view that the Court is of such importance that it is vital that it should be fully independent of the Government and all other sources of pressure, we should not be unduly worried if lay members should possibly be partially unemployed during the time they are sitting on the Court. After all, the Lord Advocate is often partially unemployed while sitting on the Government Front Bench. That does not mean that the Lord Advocate should continue in private legal practice, nor that he ought to be retired before becoming Lord Advocate. In these matters we ought to be prepared to pay someone on a full-time basis.

If the Parliamentary Secretary cannot accept the Amendment, will he at least tell the Committee what sort of individual he has in mind to fill these posts? The other undertaking is that he will put forward an Amendment on Report to make it clear that these people will not be currently engaged in the rest of their part-time in work which will make them prejudiced from this point of view.

Mr. Walker-Smith

In one respect the hon. Member for Stechford (Mr. Roy Jenkins) slightly overstated the case which I put. I did not say that nobody could be appointed who was in industry or commerce. I said that it was obviously undesirable that anybody should be appointed who was engaged in industry or commerce in such a way as to prejudice his objectivity over these matters. The hon. Gentleman asked me what sort of people should be appointed. I suppose that very often they would be people, particularly in the case of a part-time member, who had acquired their experience and knowledge in one of those three fields, but had in fact retired.

The fact that they might be of mature years is, of course, traditionally no bar to the exercise of the judicial function. Indeed, it was always supposed that maturity of years and reflective disposition were an aid to the exercise of the judicial function. The real difficulty about accepting the Amendment is that if we are ever in the position—of which the hon. Member made little, but which is undesirable—of having as a full-time member someone who will do only part-time work, that would be an undesirable precedent. The hon. Member was quite wrong about my right hon. and learned Friend the Lord Advocate, whose keen mind is always active on the Front Bench and elsewhere. The other alternative, if the Amendment is accepted, as the Committee will appreciate, has an important basic difficulty. While, for obvious reasons, the Bill prevents judges of the Court being interchangeable between England, Scotland and Northern Ireland, there is nothing to prevent the lay members being interchangeable.

9.30 p.m.

The difficulty is that if we have stipulated that only full-time members will sit, it will not be very easy to prevent the English full-time members from sitting both in Scotland and Northern Ireland. The danger is that we shall not get Scottish and Northern Irish lay members sitting in their divisions of the Court. It is clearly desirable that, as far as possible, the lay members sitting in Scotland and Northern Ireland should be Scotsmen and Northern Irishmen respectively. The danger of accepting the Amendment is that we should probably be committing Scotland and Ireland to having English full-time members sitting in their divisions of the Court as and when required. I ask the hon. and learned Member for Leicester, North-East (Sir L. Ungoed-Thomas) to bear in mind the importance of that point, and not to press the Amendment, which will bring that undesirable consequence in its train.

Mr. Mulley

I am very surprised at the revelations which the moving of this simple Amendment has produced. I was wondering if we were talking about the same Bill as that in respect of which we had some wonderful talk yesterday about the importance of making it clear to everyone that the Court was completely impartial. In his reply to the debate on the Question, "That the Clause stand part of the Bill," the President said that hon. Members on this side of the Committee underrated the size of the problem, because these restrictive practices went very deeply indeed into all channels of industry and commerce.

Under the Bill, however, the part-time members must be people with a knowledge of industry and commerce. It will be an insult to Irish and Scottish people if they are fobbed off with people who have retired because, in my experience, people who have retired are likely to be more set in their ways and less likely to accept the innovations which this Bill produces than people of middle age or younger.

It is all very well for the Parliamentary Secretary to say that we welcome elderly judges. I am not at all sure that that is true. There is, however, at least something to be said for somebody who has spent a long life in the courts of law. By the end of his life he should have learned something, at any rate, about impartiality. But people who have had a long history in industry and commerce do not develop a judicial approach to these matters merely because they have become old. The late Harold Laski condemned the fact that, in relation to the Civil Service, we tend to mistake antiquity for experience. I hope that the Government will not adopt that approach in the employment of part-time members of the Scottish and Irish divisions of the Court.

The cost involved if the Amendment were to be accepted can be very little more than £2,000 or £3,000, and it will give these courts people which the importance of the job justifies. We are setting up a court equivalent to the High Court and its part-time members will have a vote equally with that of the High Court judge presiding. If the two part-time members decide to overrule the judge under the provisions which we shall be discussing later in the Schedule, they will be entitled to do so upon matters of fact. We all know that the essence of matters to be discussed and brought before the Court will be matters of fact—the question whether certain practices are or are not in the public interest. There is no law about it; the decisions will be economic ones.

I must ask the Parliamentary Secretary to look at this problem again. It would be quite reasonable for him to accept the Amendment and then produce a limitation upon it on the Report stage. If he wants special arrangements to be made in respect of Ireland and Scotland, let him bring them forward on the Report stage, when the House can consider them. I am sure that hon. Members on both sides of the Committee attach importance to the status of these appointed members. If the Parliamentary Secretary cannot accept the Amendment I must ask my hon. Friends to force the matter to a Division.

Mr. Arthur Holt (Bolton, West)

I ask the Parliamentary Secretary to look at this matter again. We must be very careful to see that, as far as is humanly possible, the public and the people who come before the Court see that the greatest trouble has been taken to ensure that the lay members are in no way connected with the kind of practices in respect of which they are sitting in judgment.

There is a difficulty here, and I appreciate the points made by the Parliamentary Secretary. I would just draw his attention to something which is happening outside at the moment which has some relevance. In the inquiry now taking place concerning the scheme for egg marketing, there has been a lot of fuss about certain connections which the person presiding at the inquiry has with the Farmer's Union and with the supply of milk under the Milk Marketing Board. It is not in any way suggested that he himself is partial, but he has these connections; yet he is presiding over that inquiry.

This kind of thing is likely to happen if we have lay members who are seen in any way to have some slight interest. It most certainly will be brought up in the Press, and the impartiality of the court will be questioned, if these people are seen to have the slightest connection with any of these outside interests. Whilst there is an obvious difficulty here, I hope the Parliamentary Secretary will perhaps decide that he will at least have another look at it.

Mr. Henry Usborne (Birmingham, Yardley)

There is another aspect to this problem which has not been adequately emphasised and which is certainly troubling me. When I listened to the earlier part of the discussion and heard that it was impossible to appoint full-time lay members in Northern Ireland and Scotland, I wondered why that should be so, why full-time members from the English courts could not perhaps be seconded.

That seemed to me to be a perfectly obvious proposal, so obvious that I thought there must be a genuine catch in it, some very good reason why it could not possibly be done. I was very surprised to hear the Parliamentary Secretary say that that course could not be taken because one could not have Englishmen sitting in a Scottish court or a Sassenach sitting in the courts of Northern Ireland.

I do not understand that at all. We are here concerned with trade, and trade pays no attention to these arbitrary requirements; its boundaries are open between England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales. I do not see that that argument is valid at all. Furthermore, it seems to me that in so far as the members are full-time in England—and I think there is an argument for that—then it is essential that all these lay members should equally be full-time. That is a logical conclusion.

Before I press that over-much, I should like to refer to one factor which worries me somewhat. The judges themselves, of course, are full-time judges; but they are not full-time judges of this particular Court. These lay members, if full-time, are not allowed, apparently, to take any part in the only alternative vocations available to them. Thus, when they are not being employed in the courts, they will have nothing whatever to do; whereas the judges can go to their own courts, where they may continue to function as judges. This is, to my mind, a bothersome problem. I should like to hear more about it before we let this matter be concluded.

Mr. Walker-Smith

I have had the advantage of a word with my right hon. and learned Friend the Lord Advocate. Subject to the desirability and necessity of keeping the interests of Scotland and of Northern Ireland intact, I am prepared to say to the hon. Member for Sheffield. Park (Mr. Mulley) that I will look sympathetically at this Amendment between now and Report. I cannot give an undertaking to accept the Amendment. I am not sure, apart from anything else, whether its language is precisely correct for the purpose which he has in mind. I am prepared to give an undertaking to look sympathetically at it between now and Report.

Mr. Ross

Before we can accept the undertaking of the Parliamentary Secretary we have to keep in mind what he said prior to that undertaking. It was that if he accepted the Amendment it would mean that the whole-time members in England would have to go into Scotland as well to perform their judicial functions. If he is withdrawing that argument we might consider accepting his undertaking.

Mr. Walker-Smith

It is precisely that sort of consideration which prevents my giving an undertaking to accept the Amendment. That is why I have had to make it provisional. I said that I made it conditional upon keeping the interests of Scotland and Northern Ireland intact.

Mr. Ross

The obvious way to do that is to ensure that we have the problem in Scotland treated with the gravity that it merits. We have been led to think that that was the view of the Government. Is there any reason to believe that this matter is not so important in Scotland that we can have full-time members? If the hon. and learned Gentleman wants to meet the wishes of Scotland he should accept the Amendment and let us have full-time members.

Mr. Walker-Smith

The hon. Gentleman is under a misapprehension. It is not derogatory to a country not to have enough restrictive trade practices to keep the Court fully employed.

Mr. Jay

Will the hon. and learned Gentleman say why we should not have full-time members in Scotland? If and when they were unoccupied they could spend a part of their time in England, as does the Lord Advocate.

Mr. Mulley

In view of the undertaking given by the Parliamentary Secretary that he will look carefully at this matter and will produce an Amendment on Report, I beg to ask leave to withdraw the Amendment.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.

Mr. Charles Fletcher-Cooke (Darwen)

I beg to move, in page 3, line 34, to leave out "knowledge of or".

The Temporary Chairman (Sir Austin Hudson)

The next three Amendments to the same line all deal with the same point, and may be considered together.

Mr. Fletcher-Cooke

The effect of the Amendment would be to require that the lay members of the Court should in all circumstances have had, not merely knowledge, but experience in industry, commerce or public affairs. There is a grave suspicion in this country of people who merely write about things and have not had experience of them. It is summed up in the words, "An ounce of practice is worth a pound of theory." [An HON. MEMBER: "Ton."] Well, a ton. Whatever the phrase is it is clear that if we wish to give the public confidence in this Court we should make it a requirement that the lay judges, who are something of a novelty in our national life, should have had experience in industry, commerce or public affairs, and not merely have been academic or cloistered figures, or have researched into the matter or perhaps written books and delivered lectures.

9.45 p.m.

I am not sure that I would go as far as to say that it is vitally necessary to have had experience. I am not one of those who think it is derogatory for anybody to say that he merely got his knowledge out of books. In many cases, knowledge that is got out of books is just as good as knowledge obtained in the hard school of life. Nevertheless, it is not one's own judgment that one has to think about in these matters.

The fact has been emphasised over and over again today that in erecting this rather novel Court it is essential that it should retain, as far as possible, the confidence of everybody, particularly those who are likely to come before it. The private traders and manufacturers who are coming before it are undoubtedly the people who are somewhat suspicious of those who merely lecture them from on high and have never had practical experience in the day-to-day affairs of business and commerce.

For those reasons, we think that in order to give that confidence it is essential that knowledge must be coupled with experience. Undoubtedly, that occurs in the stream of our law—and in foreign law there is the example of expert witnesses. The foreign courts pay much more regard to those expert witnesses who are actual practitioners than to those who are merely text-book writers and the like. In foreign law, if a witness is called who is merely writing a text-book about the subject or is an academic figure, he is not regarded with the same confidence—if at all—as is someone who is a practitioner. In the same way, I think that in this country—not merely in the courts of law, but generally, as I have said—more regard and more weight is given to someone who has himself been through the mill than to someone who has criticised the way in which other peope have gone through the mill.

Mrs. Castle

We, on this side of the Committee, cannot possibly accept the Amendment, because its effect would be to limit still further the range of choice available to the Government in selecting the lay members. Having listened to the arguments of the hon. Member for Darwen (Mr. Fletcher-Cooke), our suspicions have been greatly increased.

I think that the debate that we had on the previous Clause shows that—while we welcome the undertaking which the Parliamentary Secretary has given—the Government do put themselves into severe practical difficulties by putting in this sort of category and definition at all. Certainly, if some of the lay members are to be part-time, it is obvious that the choice before the Government should be as wide as possible. Even if we are to have purely full-time members on the lay side of these courts, we are absolutely at a loss to see why the Government should attempt to limit their choice in this way.

I do not wish to have a suspicious mind at this time of night, but are we quite sure that these categories which are proposed to be put in this Clause are the best from which to choose? I am really rather interested in the Government's priorities in their enumeration of the desirable categories of persons from whom these lay guardians of the public interest should be chosen. The Government put industry first, but it is really industry which is in the dock. The whole reason for this Bill is that British industry stands condemned—[An HON. MEMBER: "Both sides."] If by "both sides" the reference is to the trade unions, I must point out that there is nothing about trade unions in this Bill. The President of the Board of Trade has himself said that he wants to exclude any reference to the trade union movement or any examination of the trade union movement from the Bill.

Therefore, this Bill—and we must stick to the Bill—is, in fact, putting British industry in the dock. That is the whole tenor of the speech which the President of the Board of Trade made on Second Reading. While shaking his head very sadly and looking at British industry, he said that we must all be agreed that these restrictive practices are indeed widespread. Then, he went on to say that the parties to the agreement … are not the right people to judge whether the practice is or is not against the public interest."—[OFFICIAL REPORT. 6th March, 1956; Vol. 549, c. 1940.] I applauded the President of the Board of Trade when he said that. He will no doubt say that, in choosing the lay members from those with knowledge of or experience in industry, he will of course choose those industrialists who have had nothing to do with restrictive practices at all. Does he think that he can find them? He will have a very difficult task. Certainly, although he may be able to find industrialists who are not themselves directly and specifically parties to individual agreements, he will find it very difficult to find any industrialist who is not tainted with the restrictive practice mind, because the whole of British industry is so tainted today.

This is a significant indication of the double talk of the President of the Board of Trade, who, in looking for lay members of the tribunal which is to be so vigilant in the public interest and in the fight for the consumer, says that experience of industry is the outstanding and prior qualification for which he will look. We repudiate that. We suggest that, whatever else is excluded, that provision should receive very careful examination.

Are we quite sure that if we are going to be specific in this way and itemise categories in this way, we really know what the categories mean? What do we mean by commerce? The President said that he would choose people with knowledge and experience of commerce. I have been sitting here as a lay member of this Parliamentary tribunal trying to learn a little law while listening to the lawyers, and realising as I have sat here that what was obvious to my innocent mind is a very different thing to what is obvious to the legal mind. The two are quite different. I have been sitting here and learning that words are not what they seem, and I have to be careful about taking a lay definition of a phrase in an Act of Parliament that is capable of a legal definition.

I believed myself that I knew what this word "commerce" meant, but I turned to Stroud's Judicial Dictionary, which I found in the Library of the House. What does commerce mean? According to this dictionary, commerce is traffick, trade, or merchandise, in buying and selling of goods. I read on to find this, still within the same quotation marks—and this is a judicial dictionary— There is a distinction between commerce and TRADE; the former relates to our dealings with foreign nations or our colonies, etc. abroad—the other to our mutual traffick and dealings among ourselves at home."—(Jacob; People v. Fisher, 14 Wend, 15; see also MERCHANT.)

Sir L. Heald

It is not British; it is an American one.

Mrs. Castle

If I had wanted to get my legal definitions right, surely I was right in turning up Stroud's Dictionary, and in accepting what the dictionary tells me? No doubt, the lawyers can come back and say that Stroud's Dictionary is discredited, but perhaps they will give me another legal definition of trade and commerce.

I repeat that the dictionary states that there is a distinction between commerce and trade. If that is so the President of the Board of Trade is excluding under this Clause any retailer from this lay tribunal, yet retailers are in many cases suffering from restrictive practices. Presumably he would be preventing himself from putting on the tribunal a garage proprietor, for these are the people up in arms against the tyre industry and who want to stop the restrictive practices of the petrol people. I may be wrong, but that is what the dictionary says. To add to my confusion, it goes on to say: But this distinction may be questioned. If this is legal clarity, give me lay obscurity any time.

Subsection (2) of the definition says: The promotion of industry and commerce is charitable: That leaves me profoundly confused. It adds: See Crystal Palace Trustees v Minister of Town and Country Planning [1951], ch. 132, cited CHARITABLE PURPOSE. That is all the elucidation I have been able to get from the legal dictionary, and if the legal dictionary cannot help us surely we are entitled to ask what is the point of putting the definition in at all. If we can argue about the meaning of the words, why have the words? Surely we want to be certain that we have opened the field to the best possible choice.

Take the phrase, "public affairs". The Minister says. "industry, commerce or public affairs". What is meant by "public affairs"? Presumably it is activity in local government, but would activity in some other kind of public body or public-spirited body be accepted? What about the Secretary of the National Federation of Old Age Pensions Associations? Would he be excluded? I can imagine nobody who is more vitally interested in bringing down prices than old-age pensioners. All sorts of people would be excluded under the definition. Trade unionists would be excluded. The Parliamentary Secretary shakes his head, but in what category would he include trade unionists?

Sir L. Heald


Mrs. Castle

That is questionable, and I must turn to the dictionary again to see whether it is covered. I hope that I shall get more enlightenment than when I looked up the definition of commerce. One category which is certainly excluded is the consumer per se. The housewife is excluded—the person at the receiving end of restrictive practices. Another category which would be excluded is that of the lawyers.

Capt. L. P. S. Orr (Down, South)


Mrs. Castle

The hon. and gallant Member asks me why, but he should ask his Government; it is his Government which is introducing the Bill. It is because he can ask me that question that I have put down the Amendment. I suggest that it is absurd and unnecessary to put in a definition which is obscure, about which we can argue for half the night and which can have the effect only of excluding somebody whom we might not want to exclude. I suggest with great seriousness that the Government should accept the Amendment.

Mr. Usborne

I am worried by my hon. Friend's statement that the housewife, the person very anxious to bring prices down, will have no chance of being represented on this body. According to her definition of commerce from the legal dictionary, it has something to do with buying and selling. Surely the housewife is a congenital buyer.

10.0 p.m.

Mr. Charles Doughty (Surrey, East)

I wish to support the Amendment which has been moved by my hon. Friend the Member for Darwen (Mr. Fletcher-Cooke). I listened with very great interest to the hon. Lady the Member for Blackburn (Mrs. Castle), I would recommend her further reading of that excellent work Stroud's Judicial Dictionary, which obviously she had met for the first time. Most people, when they meet something for the first time, are either too enthusiastic or too disinterested. The hon. Lady seemed to be too enthusiastic.

The hon. Lady suggested that British industry is in the dock as a result of this Bill, but it is nothing of the sort. We do not know what the results of these inquiries will be. It may be that the Court or tribunal will decide after inquiry that such practices that come before them are to the interests of the country as a whole; we do not know. The idea that industry is in the dock is one which, I hope, will be rejected by all hon. Members, in whatever part of the Committee they sit. What is the purpose of providing in the Bill that these lay members of the Court should sit with a judge who will provide the legal knowledge and, we hope, a correct interpretation of the words of the Statute? It is that the decisions may be partly come to by those who have knowledge and experience of matters which come before the Court. For that purpose we want people who have practical experience of industry, commerce or public affairs.

Industry, of course, is vitally important because industrial questions will be discussed. I am sorry to disagree with the hon. Lady about commerce and the description in Stroud's Judicial Dictionary, but commerce includes internal as well as external commerce. If the hon. Lady disagrees with me on that she should go to a few chambers of commerce and tell them that they are not minding their own business, but are dealing in foreign trade.

On public affairs, may I at once say that undoubtedly the hon. Lady would be included. I shall not be unkind enough to say that that would be so provided the Amendment were accepted to leave out the words "knowledge of." I support the Amendment of my hon. Friend because theorists who have written books and have some preconceived ideas, or have merely studied the question in the newspapers, might otherwise be appointed to the tribunal. The Clause at present says, "knowledge of … public affairs".

Who is there in the country who, having read the football reports and the sports news and then turned to other topics in the newspapers, would not regard himself as an expert in public affairs? Who, at Election time, does not come forward at meetings and ask questions to show that he has great knowledge of public affairs? Of course, that provision would include everybody, but, because the tribunal will be deciding such highly technical matters, it should be composed of people with experience of industry and public affairs and not those with just theoretical knowledge, or those who have studied such questions at home in books or newspapers.

Therefore, I hope the judges who have to give decisions in these cases will have the advantage of the assistance of people who have experience of industry—that includes all ranks of industry—experience in commerce—which includes all ranks—trade which includes those buying and selling and experience—that means real experience—in public affairs. That is a very wide definition indeed. Let it be practical and not theoretical. It would be much better for us to support the Amendment in the name of my hon. Friend.

Sir L. Plummer

The Amendment in my name and the names of my hon. Friends, in page 3, line 35, at the end to insert "or of consumers' requirements," gives me an opportunity to extend this debate a little. I want to suggest, as the Amendment suggests, that the people who have experience of consumers' requirements should have a qualification to sit on this tribunal.

I presume that there is no restrictive practice so far as the sex of this tribunal is concerned. I presume that the word "he" could be read for "she" and "his" for "her." I am suggesting that what is really vital is that we should consider, among other things, the appointment of a woman to this tribunal.

An hon. Member has already suggested, quite properly, that if this Bill is to be successful it will affect the lives of millions of people. It will not only affect the fortunes of industrialists and traders but will materially affect the shopping methods and purchasing powers of millions of housewives. If anyone knows the effect of restrictive practices it is the housewife, who sees that most of the things she buys are controlled by price or in some other form and knows that she is powerless on her own to get what she regards as a square deal. If the President wants to make a real contribution to the tribunal he would do well to look at the proposition that someone who understands consumer interests, such as the ordinary intelligent housewife, should be included.

There are some people even more qualified to do this than the housewife. I refer to the people who manage the great Co-operative movement of this country. If we are to specify particularly the people who ought to be considered for appointment, I think we ought to specify the people who have worked and built up the great Co-operative movement of Great Britain. For example, we all know the racket going on in tea at the moment. We all know the "rings" that are being perpetrated where tea is concerned. We all know that the only people able recently to reduce the price of tea are those concerned with the Co-operative Wholesale Society, which has made a very considerable contribution in the last week or so to reducing the price of tea.

These people who are growing their tea and marketing it know a great deal about the restrictions and competitions which they have to face from other suppliers. They have the experience upon which they can call which would be of extreme value and use to a tribunal. They have not only knowledge in that respect. There is no single facet of our national life which is not touched by the great Co-operative movement.

Mr. Doughty

On a point of order, Sir Charles. The hon. Gentleman referred to rackets in tea. Is it not a rule in this Committee that when an implication is made against people it should be either supported or withdrawn?

Sir L. Plummer

The hon. and learned Member should not be so sensitive. We all know that the people who have built up the Co-operative movement have experience in dealing with all the commodities which are consumed by the people of this country.

Sir J. Barlow

The hon. Member has made serious allegations about people in the tea trade. Would he expand that, as I think it only fair that he do so?

The Chairman

I hope that the hon. Gentleman will not.

Sir L. Plummer

I appreciate, Sir Charles, that it takes a long time before your Rulings sink in or for hon. Members opposite to understand them.

I still stick to the point I am attempting to make, that there is no part of our national life which is not touched on or affected by the Co-operative movement. Here is a great trading organisation which, because it is intent on distributing its profits to its members, arouses the ire of hon. Members opposite who would prefer that it should be put into the hands of speculators and shareholders.

This great movement has played an immense part in the economic and social life of this country. Its managers and directors have a unique experience which they could put to the advantage of the State. I doubt whether there is any band of men and women in this country who have contributed so much of their time free, gratis and for nothing—

Sir L. Heald

May I ask whether the hon. Member is moving an Amendment or an advertisement?

Sir L. Plummer

What I am doing is publicising the truth. The fact is that there has been so much constant and deliberate distortion of the truth about the Co-operative movement that on occasions like this we think it only right that we should remind hon. Members and people of this nation that there is no other section of the community which can compare with the Co-operative movement in the selfless devotion of its members in trying to assist the Government.

Sir Patrick Spens (Kensington, South)

May I ask this question of the hon. Gentleman? Is he suggesting that there is no one in the Co-operative movement qualified, by virtue of his experience or experience in industry, to be nominated as a member of the Court?

Sir L. Plummer

I am not suggesting that at all. [HON. MEMBERS: "Then why the Amendment?"] Because I know this Government. I know that this Government have a deep and bitter prejudice against the Co-operative movement. I know further that if they can find an opportunity or an escape Clause which would make it difficult for a Co-operative member or employee to be appointed, they would take that way out. Therefore, we are deliberately specifying this Amendment referring to people with experience of "consumers' requirements" shall be inserted in the Bill so that such an escape Clause shall be denied to the Government.

Because we know of the malignity of hon. Members opposite to the Co-operative movement and the malignity of the Press which supports hon. Members opposite, we think it essential to include this Amendment in the Bill. I know—and hon. Members who are more closely connected with the Co-operative movement than I will support me—that the Co-operative movement is prepared to do its share, and it is for that reason that I shall have pleasure in moving this Amendment.

Squadron Leader A. E. Cooper (Ilford, South)

We have listened with interest to the hon. Member for Deptford (Sir L. Plummer), who has made a speech which I think upon reflection he will agree was very ill-advised. Certainly, there is nothing in Clause 4, as it stands, which would prevent a director or a member of the Co-operative movement from securing an appointment as a lay member of the Court. The Amendment to which he has referred does not go to the heart of the matter. I should have thought the person more concerned than anyone else with consumer requirements was the manufacturer who has to produce something which will meet the needs of the consumer. It is not necessary that the interests of the retailer should be considered here, nor does the retailer necessarily know more about consumers' requirements.

10.15 p.m.

I think that the Amendment moved by my hon. Friend the Member for Darwen (Mr. Fletcher-Cooke) is a very sound one, and I hope that my right hon. Friend the President of the Board of Trade will be able to give an affirmative reply to it. We have only to look at the sporting columns of the daily Press, to see people like Peter Wilson in the Daily Mirror or E. W. Swanton in the Daily Telegraph, and people of that sort, writing daily how a cricket or a football team should be managed or how a boxer should carry on his fight, but who themselves never handled a cricket bat, kicked a football or wore a pair of boxing gloves. I think that if we had to—

Mr. M. Stewart

Do not many hon. Members opposite often take part in debates in this House on fuel and power who have never worked down a coal mine?

Squadron Leader Cooper

That is very possible, but it is also true that a great number of hon. Members opposite who have never been inside an office take an interest in business debates. It would be quite horrific if, for example, one were to see some of the amateur economists opposite appointed as lay members of these courts, telling industry how it should conduct its affairs.

One of the tragedies of the criticisms levelled against British industry at the present time by hon. Members opposite, and particularly by the hon. Lady the Member for Blackburn (Mrs. Castle), is that they really have not a clue as to how British industry operates at all. If the hon. Lady the Member for Blackburn had taken an interest in what has come over the tape machine tonight she would have seen that British exports for the month of March are an all-time record. That has been achieved by the private sector of industry and has not been helped in any way by the publicly-owned sector of industry. That is something which we should bear very firmly in mind at this time.

The Chairman

May I ask the hon. and gallant Gentleman to which Amendment he is referring?

Squadron Leader Cooper

I am drawing attention, Sir Charles, to the point made by the hon. Lady the Member for Blackburn when she suggested that British industry was in the dock as a result of this Bill. I am trying to point out that far from British industry being in the dock, the private sector of it has contributed mightily to the prosperity of our country at the present time. It is very wrong of the hon. Lady to pillory British industry at this time.

At one time my own company was a member of a price arrangement, and I say that quite unblushingly. I know that in my industry, the chemical industry, there are a very large number of price arrangements. I am not going to suggest that because my company withdrew from one such arrangement all the price arrangements within an industry are bad. But there is a great deal of prejudice on the part of hon. Members opposite tonight. They would undoubtedly provide lay members who would say without a proper investigation that all such arrangements were bad.

I am suggesting that although, in the main, the majority of such arrangements may be bad, there can be circumstances in which, when properly investigated, they might be beneficial to industry and to the people of this country as a whole. Therefore, I say that the lay members appointed to this Court must be people who not only have a knowledge of industry, but who have a practical experience of operating within industry. That is very different from simply having knowledge of an industry which has been gained from book learning.

Mr. A. E. Oram (East Ham, South)

I wish to add by brief plea to that of my hon. Friend the member for Deptford (Sir L. Plummer) that the domestic consumer should be specifically referred to in this Bill, and that the people chosen to constitute the Court should include a person with knowledge of and experience in the organisation of consumers.

I do not accept the point made by the hon. and gallant Member for Ilford, South (Squadron Leader Cooper), that manufacturers and traders are always suitable people to represent the interests of the consumers. It is the people who are the ultimate victims of the restrictive practices, with which this Bill is designed to deal, whose interests we ought to safeguard to the utmost.

For example, if we consider many of the practices which have been unravelled already by the Monopolies and Restrictive Practices Commission, we find that those who are the ultimate victims are the housewives who pay increased prices as a result of those practices. We have only to remember the Report on Matches and Matchmaking Machinery. It is true that the industrialists and the commercial interests claim to be the direct victims of the monopoly practices in that industry, but the ultimate victim is the man who buys a box of matches to light his pipe or the housewife who buys a box of matches to light her fire or the gas stove. It is the representatives of those people that we on this side of the Committee are anxious to see included in the Court.

There has been growing up in the postwar world a wide body of experience in this very thing. I have in mind the fact that the British Standards Institution only two years ago decided to set up a consumer advisory committee. I have also in mind the work of the Retail Trading Standards Association. All that experience which has been accumulated should serve a good purpose in connection with the operation of this Measure.

My hon. Friend rightly referred to the wide area of experience in the Co-operative movement in organising consumers. He is right in suggesting that this would provide a suitable recruiting ground for people who represent the interests of the consumers. Lest the right hon. and learned Gentleman the Member for Chertsey (Sir L. Heald) thinks that I, too, am supporting an advertisement rather than an Amendment, may I say that I make no apology whatever for advertising a broad social movement—which is not in any sense a narrow commercial interest—of more than 11 million consumers organised together for their mutual benefit. That is just the organisation to which the Minister should turn when seeking representatives of those who are interested. It is perfectly possible to find people who would not necessarily be included under the definition in the Bill in the spheres to which I have referred. I hope that the Minister will accept the Amendment.

Mr. Lee

The Parliamentary Secretary was candid in his reply to the previous Amendment. The hon. Gentleman pointed out that many practical men who qualified under the definition in Clause 4 (1) would be ineligible to become lay members of the Court. Since his hon. Friend the Member for Darwen (Mr. Fletcher-Cooke) also tells us that the theorists must not be included, it is difficult to know to whom the President, or whoever will make the final decision, can turn for his lay members. We know that the practical men, if they are still connected with industry, are ineligible, and the theorists are also ineligible if the Amendment by the hon. Member for Darwen is accepted. It is most difficult to understand who can possibly qualify for membership of the courts.

We have been assured from the Government back benches that all Co-operative directors would be eligible. However, from the definition given by the Parliamentary Secretary on the last Amendment, I take it that they would not be acceptable because they are still connected with some type of industry or commerce and the suggestion could be made that they would be biased in their approach. It appeared in relation to the Amendment that the hon. Member promised to look at that he would have to devise some form of words so that only those who arrived in perambulators or bath-chairs would be eligible.

On those practical considerations, I should have thought that the statement that a person who was guilty of having some theoretical knowledge was thereby to be excluded could not be countenanced at all by the Government in their consideration of the point. When we bear in mind that those with knowledge of industry are to be excluded so long as they remain within industry, and also that the retirement age is gradually getting later, how we can obtain people with sufficient knowledge or experience who will be free to take part in the deliberations of the courts becomes a serious practical problem.

I wonder whether we might know how the Parliamentary Secretary would define the position of employees in industry who, I imagine, could scarcely be held to have any real prejudice against any industry coming before a court. Is such an employee to be deemed ineligible for membership? I appreciate the point that an employer still engaged in industry or commerce would be inhibited in his judgments because he would have a vested interest. Does that also apply to an employee? Surely a man who merely obtains his wages by working in the industry cannot have the same vested interest as that about which the hon. Gentleman was speaking.

The more one looks at the matter the more it appears that if we are to restrict ourselves by refusing to accept those whose knowledge is purely theoretical while practical men are also ineligible, we shall get ourselves into a frightful position. I hope that the Government will not accept the Amendment of the hon. Member for Darwen, and I hope they will look more broadly at the type of people who could be eligible while maintaining their positions as employees within a given industry.

10.30 p.m.

Mr. Roy Jenkins

We have had an extraordinary debate on this series of Amendments. One hon. Member opposite became so enthusiastic about supporting the Amendment by the hon. Member for Darwen (Mr. Fletcher-Cooke) that he referred to the March trade figures and delivered a most vicious attack on the Bill. He appeared to think that the March trade figures represented a complete tribute to British industry and that that was all there was to be said about it, and he appeared to wonder why the Government should be proceeding with the Bill. I understood his remarks to be an appeal to the President of the Board of Trade to withdraw the Bill.

Mr. Douglas Glover (Ormskirk)

Are we to take it from the last remark of the hon. Member that he does not consider that the March trade figures are attributable to the efforts of British industry?

Mr. Gerald Nabarro (Kidderminster)

Answer up!

Mr. Jenkins

If the hon. Member for Kidderminster (Mr. Nabarro) would stop shouting I might be able to answer up.

I have not yet had an opportunity to study the figures in the detail in which I am sure some hon. Members opposite have studied them. I take the view, which I am sure is shared by the President of the Board of Trade and would be shared by the Chancellor if he were here, that remarks about British exports being at a record level are not all one can say about one month's trading. It is extremely foolish to generalise about our balance of payments figures on the evidence of the March figures. I defy anyone on the Treasury Bench to say everything is all right on the evidence of the March figures.

We had the hon. Member for Darwen in what, I think, he found the most unhappy position of having to move the Amendment. It certainly was an unhappy one. He made an absolutely admirable speech, except that it did not seem to me to express much conviction. I think that was because he was the fifth on the list of hon. Members opposite who put their names to the Amendment. Had the hon. Member for Wokingham (Mr. Remnant), the hon. Member for Bradford, North (Mr. W. J. Taylor) or the hon. Member for Scotstoun (Sir J. Hutchison) moved the Amendment, more conviction might have been expressed. Any one of them would have been burning with passion about the desirability of excluding theoreticians and of having people looking at things from a practical point of view. The hon. Member for Darwen did not share that point of view. He had a most unhappy task in having to move the Amendment.

It is an impossible point of view to take that the only people we want as the lay members of the tribunal are people with detailed practical experience and industry. The hon. and learned Member for Surrey, East (Mr. Doughty) was more explicit about it. He believed a great deal more in the Amendment than did the hon. Member for Darwen. I do not think that was to the hon. and learned Member's credit, or to say it is surely undesirable that we should have people who have merely written or thought or lectured about industry instead of practically doing the job themselves. I understand that a large number of members of the Monopolies Commission are exactly in this position. What about Professor G. C. Allen and Professor Goodhart and Sir Arnold Plant? Then there is Mr. Gordon Stott. Q.C., though I do not know about him. I very much doubt if they fulfil the qualifications the hon. Member desires.

Lieut.-Colonel Marcus Lipton (Brixton)

Then there is the Chairman, too.

Mr. Jenkins

Yes, there is the Chairman as well.

Do hon. Members supporting the Amendment think these members of the Commission have fulfilled a useful purpose? Do they want the President to dismiss them because they do not fulfil their idea of what their qualifications should be? It is an extraordinarily narrow-minded point of view which they adopt.

If one adopts it one must go a little further. If one is to say that the only people who can be really useful as lay members of this tribunal are people who have detailed experience of what they are to investigate, one must choose not only people who have worked in industry but people who apply restrictive practices. It is not going to be any good having people from a sector of industry which does not employ restrictive practices to deal with sectors of industry which do. Their approach could be only theoretical. Those were the people of whom the hon. and gallant Member for Ilford, South (Squadron Leader Cooper) was talking.

What, therefore, does the Amendment amount to? The hon. and gallant Member made it perfectly clear that he wants the lay members of the tribunal to be people with a theoretical approach in favour of the practices.

Squadron Leader Cooper

Not at all. I do not mind a little hyperbole, but the hon. Member is not entitled to say that I said the diametric opposite of what I said.

Mr. Jenkins

It was not the diametric opposite.

Lieut.-Colonel Lipton

It was the logical inference.

Mr. Jenkins

The hon. and gallant Member was complaining very strongly indeed that people without practical knowledge of these problems should be set to pronounce upon them. Who are the best people, in his opinion, to pronounce upon them, if not those people who themselves have adopted these methods? Are not those people who have not applied these practices, by their very nature, liable to be extremely efficient? It is quite clear that the hon. Member's whole speech was contrary to the principle of the Bill and not in support of it.

One of our difficulties arises from the fact that we have not had an answer from the President or anybody else as to what these lay members are intended to do in the Court. That question arose out of the first Amendment. We are getting into a very muddled position here, and I hope that the President will answer a question which I put to him in connection with an earlier Amendment—and which he did not answer—and which is equally relevant to this one. Are these lay members intended to bring into the Court outside experience, or are they intended merely to pronounce upon the basis of the evidence brought before them? What exactly is their job?

I am absolutely certain that the consequences of accepting the Amendment would be extremely disadvantageous. It runs counter to everything that we desire in relation to the judicial tribunal and its detached attitude to these questions. It is desirable that we should widen the scope of choice and not narrow it in this extremely undesirable way.

Mr. M. Stewart

In endeavouring to commend his Amendment to the Committee, the hon. Member for Darwen (Mr. Fletcher-Cooke) said that it was important that this Court, like all courts, should enjoy—as he put it—the confidence of the public in general and, particularly, of those who would be appearing before it. I wonder if that is the right approach to this question. Would one say, for example, that the court which tried Dr. Crippen should have enjoyed the confidence of the public in general and, in particular, of Dr. Crippen? [HON. MEMBERS: "Of course."] That would be true only if we could assume that all the persons who appear before the courts are public-spirited and want to be found guilty if they are guilty, or, in this case, want to have their practices found to be not in the public interest if that is so. But human nature is not like that. One should surely rather say that a court should enjoy the confidence of law-abiding and public-spirited citizens, whether or not they came before it.

Sir Ian Fraser (Morecambe and Lonsdale)

Surely some of the people who come before the Court may be innocent, may they not?

Mr. Stewart

Yes, that is exactly the point I was making. That is why I said that the Court should enjoy the confidence of law-abiding and public-spirited citizens, whether or not they came before it.

We certainly cannot start off by saying, as the hon. Member for Darwen did, that we must be sure that the people who come before the Court have confidence in it, because the only court some people will have confidence in, by their very nature, is one which says, "Go on, old boy. Go on doing what you have been doing." We do not want that kind of Court.

How does the hon. Member propose to secure this measure of public confidence in the Court? He proposes to do it by excluding the people he described as theoreticians—people who have only book knowledge. He is not merely saying that in choosing the lay members we must not only have people with book knowledge but must also have some with practical experience—if he were saying that, we should agree with him—but he is saying that we must go further and provide that if a certain person's approach to the matter has been academic—and I use the word in no derogatory sense—he shall be excluded, no matter what may be the power and vigour of his mind.

In this matter of recruiting members of the Court, there may be something to be said for turning a poacher into a gamekeeper, but what the hon. Member for Darwen is saying—and even more so the hon. and gallant Member for Ilford, South (Squadron Leader Cooper)—is that only ex-poachers shall be qualified for this gamekeeper's post. That does not seem to me to be a satisfactory arrangement.

Mr. Fletcher-Cooke

Would the hon. Gentleman say that somebody with experience of local government, for example—who would qualify for membership if my Amendment were accepted—is in any way an ex-poacher or an ex-gamekeeper?

Mr. Stewart

If the hon. Gentleman admits somebody with experience of local government, he really destroys the logic of his argument for not having a distinguished professor of a university. If it can be said that somebody who has served on a local government authority is qualified to sit on a court dealing with restrictive practices—and I think it could, though one would have to ask what sort of local authority it was and how long he had served on it before one could say whether that really qualified him to sit on the court—it is completely illogical to say that a man who may have made a most valuable and powerful contribution in the world of learning on the very subject concerned shall not be eligible.

The hon. and gallant Member for Ilford, South was rather more frank. He made it appear that he did not only object to theoreticians in general but to particular ones: he wanted to keep off those who were Socialist theoreticians. Why not be quite frank about it and let us have an Amendment saying that only people who agree with some of the more reactionary sections on the benches opposite shall be eligible for membership of this Court? That was what a great deal of the argument boiled down to.

When my hon. Friend the Member for Deptford (Sir L. Plummer) was speaking, it was apparent from the interjections and attitude of hon. Members opposite that while they could not actually condemn people whose experience lay in the Co-operative movement they would have been very much happier if, somehow, these words about experience could have been drafted to exclude that kind of experience.

In answer to the Amendment, I want deliberately to make a defence of the academic mind and of academic people and of the valuable contributions they have made to the practical public life of the country whether or not they have held positions which would entitle them to say that they had experience as distinct from knowledge. Do not let us imagine that experience without the capacity to profit by it is of the least value. It has been well said that Frederick the Great's mule went on as many campaigns as Frederick the Great and was no more fitted to conduct strategy at the end of the process than at the beginning.

Who was one of the people who at the outset of the Industrial Revolution, when great problems of policy faced the country, had more beneficial influence than any other single person at that time? It was Adam Smith, whose profession was that of a professor of moral philosophy and whose works illustrate very well indeed the important proposition which is the real justification for the academic's place in public life. That proposition I put as follows: from time to time we need people able to pronounce judgments on subjects that need a great deal of expert knowledge; but if we go to the people whose approach to that knowledge has been through practical experience we have the difficulty that they are, by the very virtue of that experience, prejudiced, interested parties.

Therefore, and we have done it repeatedly in our history, we have looked to the academic to provide the approach that combines a breadth of knowledge with an undisturbed concern for the public interest, and very well indeed people of that kind have served this country. I mentioned Adam Smith. Let us take a more recent example. During the war it was necessary to draw people into all kinds of work they had never done before. It was an experience very commonly found that people whose background had been solely that of the practical businessman were hampered by the fact that their conception of the thing they were supposed to do was conditioned by the idea of making it profitable to some private person rather than making it serve the direct public interest.

10.45 p.m.

Conversely, it was found that a civil servant was very often hampered by his addiction to a routine and that a very valuable element was provided in the running of those services during the war by people who were drawn from the universities. I do not say that they could have done their work unaided by the practical man or the civil servant, but they were an essential and very valuable factor in the whole alliance of talents that was needed then. That is why people of that kind certainly ought not to be excluded. Over and over again, when the House has had to get down to the practical problem of drafting a working scheme of social legislation of the kind which has so distinguished this country in recent years, we have found that much of the necessary pioneer work has been done as a result of surveys carried out by the universities.

We have to realise this. A man does a thing well not only by virtue of his experience but by virtue of the amount of interest he has in it and how keen he is on it. It may often happen that a man can be very efficient indeed at making a fortune for himself because he is interested in that but that the same man will make a howling failure of trying to serve the public interest because he is not interested in serving the public interest. It is significant that the people in this country who have spoken most loudly in favour of the idea of what used to be called a "business Government" have generally been the people who were not engaged in running anything in the public interest.

I make these points in defence of the general proposition that there is some contribution to be made to the solving of practical problems such as those which have to be solved in this Bill by what I deliberately called the academic type of person; that the history of the country bears that out over and over again. Though only a fool would suggest that the lay members of the court should be recruited solely from among them, I do say that it would be a profound error to close that particular source.

If this Amendment were carried, what would be the result? It would be literally true that the distinguished persons whose names have been mentioned by my hon. Friend the Member for Stetchford (Mr. Roy Jenkins) would not be eligible, but that anybody who had been a barrow boy for a week would be eligible. That would be literally the result of this Amendment.

In conclusion, I would say that of all the Amendments proposed to this part of the Bill that proposed by my hon. Friend the Member for Blackburn (Mrs. Castle) commended itself most to me—not that I did not agree with much that was said by my hon. Friend the Member for Stechford. Surely it is always an advantage, if we can, to make the wording of an Act of Parliament as simple as possible. If the Amendment of my hon. Friend the Member for Blackburn is adopted the qualification will be: a person appearing to the Lord Chancellor to be qualified by virtue of his knowledge or experience. If we add anything to that I believe we shall make the Bill worse. The Government has something to add to it at the moment, and the result is that others of my hon. Friends have felt it necessary to go on to make further Amendments, because the moment we begin to qualify those words we lay ourselves open to the suspicion that we are thinking more of one kind of person—and one kind of interest—than of another. Why not, therefore, stick to the simple words: a person appearing to the Lord Chancellor to be qualified by virtue of his knowledge or experience"? If we go any further we are really telling the Lord Chancellor something that someone in such a position ought to know. We are trying to do his job for him.

The Lord Chancellor is very unlikely to conclude that someone whose knowledge or experience has lain exclusively in the field of Chinese music is thereby qualified to be a lay member of the Restrictive Practices Court. If he looks at the words as they will be if the Amendment of the hon. Member for Blackburn is accepted, he has also to appoint someone who appears to him to be qualified by virtue of his knowledge or experience, and the knowledge or experience has obviously got to be that which would qualify him or could reasonably dispose to qualify him for this work. Surely that is plain in the directive, and the Lord Chancellor should be in a position to carry it out. I trust very much that the Committee will reject the obscurantist Amendment, moved by the hon. Member for Darwen, and will give its support to the proposal of my hon. Friend the Member for Blackburn.

Mr. Cronin

I wish to draw the attention of the Committee to the desirability of the Amendment so ably advocated by the hon. Lady the Member for Blackburn (Mrs. Castle). I think everyone in the Committee will agree that the lay members of this Court will be people of the utmost importance; their appointments will require very careful consideration, and the very best possible candidates must be obtained. It is obvious, almost platitudinous, to say that if one is to get the best possible candidates it is always advisable to have the widest possible range from which to draw them. So any limitation on the choice of the Lord Chancellor must have a deprecatory effect on the membership of the Court.

It seems to me that as this Clause of the Bill is drafted, it indicates a distrust of the Lord Chancellor, that is not really justifiable, so far as one can see. It insists that he should choose a person of knowledge of or experience in industry, commerce or public affairs. One cannot help feeling that the right hon. Gentleman and his colleagues have some doubts about whether people who have those qualifications will be of the same turn of mind. One wonders whether the Lord Chancellor is not trusted to choose people who will be taken from the ranks of the restrictionists and monopolists, and Rightwing politicians. At all events, as my hon. Friend the Member for Fulham (Mr. M. Stewart) has rightly said, I think that one can trust the Lord Chancellor to make a suitable appointment.

Before one goes into the qualities of the holders of these positions, it is important that the Committee should consider what is being done by them. What duties are we to consider? What are the functions of this Court? Obviously, they are matters concerning trade, economics, sociology and public life generally. It is clear that this Court has to give judgment on matters which really are the problems of the Government. It has essentially to make decisions which should be taken by the occupants of the Government Front Bench.

It is always desirable, when seeking to make appointments of a public nature like this, to try to obtain the absolute ideal, and when one considers the functions of this Court, the person, of the ideal qualifications is a person who has exactly the same qualifications as that of a President of the Board of Trade. In fact, one could always hope that the President of the Board of Trade could multiply himself by some process of binary fission into twins, quadruplets and sextuplets, and sit one on either side of the judges of these Restrictive Practices Courts. Some of my hon. Friends are reminding me, by their murmurs, that perhaps that is going a little too far, so far as the present occupant of that office is concerned. Judging by the Bill, which seems to treat the restrictionist and the monopolist with considerable tenderness, I would say that the predecessors of the President of the Board of Trade were perhaps the more ideal persons.

The common sense of the matter is that the Court has to perform functions which are essentially those of Government, and, therefore, the lay members should have the qualities of administrators. There should be no qualification requiring knowledge of or experience in industry, commerce or public affairs. Such qualifications are not demanded of candidates for Parliament. As it is essentially the work of Government that has to be done, those words should be deleted and the choice should be left unfettered, in the terms suggested by my hon. Friend the Member for Blackburn.

Mr. Jay

Though the hour is late and the tone of the debate is inclined to be humorous, this is nevertheless a matter of very great substance. We have had it upon the authority of the President of the Board of Trade, both on Second Reading and today, and from the Lord Chancellor, who devoted an important speech to it in Glasgow, that these are political and economic decisions which will be taken by the Court. It is, therefore, very important to know who the lay members of the Court are to be.

I put this argument forward in all earnestness to assist the Government in making this now judicial scheme work as well as possible. We have now taken the decision that there is to be a Court, and we want to see it working with the confidence of the country. If we were to have the sort of Court that some Government supporters want who have spoken in this debate nobody on this side of the Committee would have much confidence in it at all, and that probably goes for a very big section of opinion in the country.

I approach this matter with the intention I have mentioned. The President of the Board of Trade is not taking all the politics out of this matter and removing political judgments from the Court altogether, but is substituting the economic and political judgments of these ten people for the judgment of Parliament, so it is rather important to know who they are to be. The first question to be asked is, what sort of people do we want to see as lay members of the Court and then to look at the wording of the Bill to see whether it carries out our intentions. Whom do we want to be eligible for appointment?

I hope that all hon. Members agree that we want people with experience as industrialists and businessmen, not merely as manufacturers but as distributors. We also want, if we are logical, trade unionists to be eligible, although not necessarily to be appointed or to be predominant. Are we quite sure that the wording of the Bill would include trade unionists as well as experienced persons on the other side of industry? Industrialists and ex-industrialists inevitably have a certain bias towards the production side, so it is vital that the consumers' point of view should be fully represented. The main objection to a restrictive agreement is that it exploits the consumer and benefits the producer. There should be a certain bias in these appointments in favour of the consumer, or at least impartial representation.

11.0 p.m.

Thirdly, we want the ex-civil servant or ex-public servant of one kind or another to be eligible. When considering the consumers' representative, as my hon. Friend the Member for Deptford (Sir L. Plummer) said, we should certainly not exclude people with experience in the Co-operative movement. I presume that to be covered by the words in the Bill. I do not think we should exclude the ordinary representative of consumers who has had no particular interest or experience necessarily in any organisation, or perhaps an individual who, as my hon. Friend the Member for Blackburn (Mrs. Castle) said, might have been a member of some body such as the National Federation of Old Age Pensions Associations.

In spite of what has been said by hon. Members opposite, we do not want to exclude the purely academic lawyer, or economist or expert, whoever he may be. I do not think we would wish to exclude someone of the character of Professor Goodhart from this organisation. The view I take—and I hope the President will agree with this, for the sake of the authority of the Court—is that we do not want to exclude any people of that kind. Looking at the words at present in the Bill, qualified by virtue of his knowledge of"— we presume that that also means "her knowledge"— or experience in industry, commerce or public affairs. I suppose the industrialist or man experienced in commerce or distribution would be included. I am not quite so sure about the trade unionist, but we should like to know. In spite of what has been said about buying being also selling, it would appear that as the Bill stands at present the consumer representative is not included. I suppose that the ex-civil servant would be included in view of the words about public affairs. Perhaps we could have that confirmed.

Finally, we would assume that the academic lawyer or academic economist—provided the Amendment moved by the hon. Member for Darwen (Mr. Fletcher-Cooke) is not accepted, as we emphatically hope it will not be—would, in view of the words "knowledge of," be included. Surely much the best solution of the difficulty—I hope the President will not rule this out even if he has made up his mind the other way—is to leave out the qualifying words altogether. Why should we not say, "someone qualified or appearing to the Lord Chancellor to be qualified, by virtue of his knowledge or experience"? What is the objection to that? If we go beyond that we are limiting the choice which the Government will have.

I see two objections to a limitation of any kind. The first is that to some extent a good choice will depend on the qualifications of the actual individual, man or woman, and not on his or her past experience at all. Secondly, what we want above all is a good balance between different types of qualification. I do not think it is at all useful to argue the qualifications of the practical businessman as against those of the lawyer or the academic expert; what we want is to have a good balance of points of view with a certain bias towards the impartial, or consumer, representation. I am bound to say that if the Government reject this request, which I think is the best, in their own interests, to improve the Bill—if they reject our main Amendment to leave out the qualifying words and we are to have the other words in—words such as like "consumers' requirements" should be included.

We having stated our point of view. I should like to ask the Government what their intentions are in this matter. If we pass the Bill in one or another form, what sort of people do they intend to appoint? This is of the greatest importance. We are handing over immense power to these people—power, to use the argument of the President of the Board of Trade, to make political and economic judgments. It is essential that, before we do that, we should know what kind of people the Government have in mind for appointment.

I do think it is time for the Parliamentary Secretary to answer a vital question, highly relevant here, which has been put to the Government several times: how are these lay members to operate? Are they or are they not going to take into account, in reaching their judgments, the knowledge or experience which they have gained outside the court, or are they to be restricted to the evidence and to the arguments which come before the Court? We are anxious to hear a full account of the Government's intentions in appointing these extremely powerful lay members of the Court.

Mr. Walker-Smith

The Committee has discussed four Amendments here, but they all have this in common: they agree that there must be some sort of definition in the Clause to assist the Lord Chancellor in arriving at an appropriate appointment. It is clearly appropriate that there should be some definition because of the two elements which comprise these courts. The judges are of themselves a sufficient guarantee of capacity and judicial quality; but the lay members are something of a new concept in our juridical system and, therefore, it is right that Parliament should prescribe the sort of qualities which they must have, and the sort of field within which they must be sought.

The Amendment of the hon. Gentleman the Member for Darwen (Mr. Fletcher-Cooke) would narrow the definition, and the Amendments of the hon. Gentleman the Member for Deptford (Sir L. Plummer) and the hon. Lady the Member for Blackburn (Mrs. Castle) would widen the definition in two rather different ways.

This encourages me to think that perhaps in taking the middle course we have got it just right in what we have done in the Clause. I address myself, first, to the widening Amendments. The effect of the hon. Lady's Amendment would be to make knowledge or experience the criteria, and I was a little surprised at the enthusiasm of the right hon. Member for Battersea, North (Mr. Jay) for this particular form of definition. Knowledge or experience of what? I can imagine many fields of knowledge or experience which would be highly inadequate and inappropriate qualifications for this sort of position.

The hon. Lady based her case, as in part so did the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Battersea, North, on certain categories of people whose eligibility for lay membership of the Court they professed doubt about if the definition in the Bill stands. I was very much surprised that the hon. Lady professed to doubt the eligibility of trade unionists under the definition in the Bill for lay membership of the Court. I was glad to note that the right hon. Gentleman did not adopt her doubts, but he put the point in a neutral form, as to whether or not we thought they would be eligible under this definition—

Mr. Jay

It is a technical point. In legislation since the war the phrase "experience in the organisation of labour" has usually been used when trade unions are intended, and as the Government have departed from that, we want to know what is in their minds.

Mr. Walker-Smith

I am obliged, but I do not think that that was the point in the mind of the hon. Lady.

I would suggest to the right hon. Gentleman, to the hon. Lady, and to the hon. Gentleman the Member for Newton (Mr. Lee), who also raised this point, that the words "knowledge of or experience in industry" would extend to cover a person who had acquired his knowledge or experience on the side of industry which is the normal precursor to service in the trade union movement, just as much as it would include knowledge of or experience on the executive or managerial side of industry.

Mr. Jay

We must be clear. Is the hon. and learned Gentleman saying that if some young man has gone straight from the university to be a member of a trade union secretariat, he would be excluded later in life?

Mr. Walker-Smith

If he had knowledge of or experience in industry gained in that way, he would then be eligible under this definition. I do not think there is anything very difficult about that, with respect to the right hon. Gentleman.

Then the hon. Lady queried whether lawyers would be eligible. It is unusual to find hon. Members, who are not themselves lawyers, exhibiting tenderness to the profession. [An HON. MEMBER: "It depends on the lawyer."] It depends upon the knowledge or experience of the lawyer. One would not expect, having a judicial court, to need much legal representation on the Court because, of course, each division of the Court is presided over by a High Court judge, and the legal qualifications come in that way.

The next point of the hon. Lady, which was also echoed by the hon. Gentleman the Member for Deptford, was whether a woman, say, a housewife, should be appointed as a member of the Court. If the Committee looks at the justiciable issue as defined in Clause 16, and has in mind what will be the task of the members of the Court, it will be appreciated that it does not altogether follow that a housewife would necessarily be the best person, as such, to construe the rather difficult and elaborate justiciable issue in Clause 16.

Mrs. Castle

The hon. and learned Gentleman is forgetting the last paragraph of Clause 16, in which the Court has to decide that the restriction has not operated and is not calculated to operate … to the detriment of … consumers or users of goods … Surely that is an issue on which a housewife would be eloquent.

Mr. Walker-Smith

I can assure the hon. Lady that I am forgetting nothing. She will appreciate that before coming to that, the issues defined in paras. (a) to (g) of Clause 16 have to be tried first, and that we should not have a member of the Court who was there to adjudicate on part of the issue and not on the rest. The suggestion of having a housewife, as such, as a member of the Court is not a constructive one. I recall the definition made by the late Philip Guedalla of the committee consisting of three just men and a statutory woman.

In this Bill we have tried to avoid specifying representatives of particular interests, or even sections of the community, as members of the Court, because it is not that sort of job. It is a judicial job, and we have sought to define the knowledge and experience which would make people able to discharge that judicial function.

11.15 p.m.

Mrs. Castle

This is really an attack on my sex. I cannot allow that. I am serious about this. I am a housewife. I am not experienced in industry or commerce; but that does not disqualify me from sitting in judgment on this Bill, its Clauses and technical points. It is ludicrous to suggest that someone here in this Committee who is a consumer and a housewife is capable of helping to draw up this Bill, but is not acceptable in this other capacity.

Mr. Walker-Smith

The hon. Lady must be a little more logical. The implication of what she has said is that this Bill would exclude someone because she is a housewife. That is clearly wrong. The point is that the Bill does not make the fact of being a housewife of itself an entitlement to selection for the Court. The hon. Lady has chosen to put herself forward as an illustration, so I will follow. The hon. Lady sits in the Committee, as she has reminded us. Indeed, we do not need any reminder of that. She further has knowledge and experience of public affairs.

Mrs. Castle

Not before I came here.

Mr. Walker-Smith

It is really a reactionary observation for her to suggest that no housewives will qualify under one or other of these heads. Of course they can; but not simply because they are housewives. There is no statutory woman, or statutory housewife, in the words of Mr. Guedalla.

Mr. Jay

I am sorry to press the Parliamentary Secretary, but we must be clear about this. Is he saying that the Government intend, under the Bill as it now stands, that no woman whose only qualification is being a consumer or a housewife will be eligible?

Mr. Walker-Smith

I am going to deal with the question of consumers, which is the point which was raised by the hon. Member for Deptford and the hon. Member for East Ham, North (Mr. Oram). The suggestion that there should be consumers' representatives does not commend itself to us for the reasons I have just given—that it is not sought to make the entitlement the fact that people are representatives of this or that section of the community. Once one starts doing that one has to go over a long list of balancing representation. This Court will have a judicial function.

The question of members of Co-operative societies was raised. Such people, I would think, would be eligible, or could be, under the definition, "by reason of knowledge of or experience in commerce." So far as consumers as such are concerned, the Committee will appreciate that everyone is a consumer. If that were made a part of the definition it would not be a definition at all. A definition which is all-embracing ceases to be a definition.

The Committee will appreciate that the consumers' interests are not overlooked merely because consumers are not, as such, among the persons specified in the definition. Consumers will, one imagines, be active and present in these proceedings because in the role of witnesses, for example, I should suppose consumers would play a pretty large part in the proceedings of these Courts, and the Registrar is, indeed, the custodian of consumers' interests as he is of the public interest generally.

There were one or two other points raised by the right hon. Gentleman and others. He mentioned the civil servant. The ex-civil servant would, presumably, be eligible by knowledge and experience of public affairs, and similarly the economist and academic lawyer of whom he spoke.

I address myself now to the Amendment so persuasively and felicitously moved by my hon. Friend the Member for Darwen. We, of course, share his desire that members of these Courts should be practical persons, but when one measures practicality one has, of course, to measure it in relation to the function which is to be discharged, and this is not an executive function. Were this an executive function it might well be one could go the whole way in agreeing to my hon. Friend's Amendment, but it is not an executive function: it is a judicial function, and the qualification of some, though not all, of the members might well be found in knowledge rather than in experience.

It is not only a question of academic people, as the hon. Member for Fulham (Mr. M. Stewart) said; still less is it a question only of the writers to whom my hon. Friend more particularly referred. There are a good many people who would be excluded necessarily by this narrowing of the definition who might do useful service on these Courts. To take examples, the professional chartered accountant would not, as I see it, come within my hon. Friend's definition, though he would come within the definition in the Clause. The solicitor would be in the same position, the university teacher would be in the same position, the economist, and so on. That is not an exhaustive list, but an illustration of the sort of people who would not be able to sit if this Amendment were passed.

Therefore, I would ask my hon. Friend to agree that this definition as it is in the Clause is just about right in its width and approach to enable the Lord Chancellor to make a good and balanced choice. That being so, I hope that my hon. Friend will not press his Amendment, and that, indeed, other hon. Members will not persist in theirs. If they do, I invite the Committee to reject them.

Mr. Jay

The Parliamentary Secretary has still not answered the question which seems to us important. Will these lay members in making their judgments be able to draw on the knowledge and experience they have derived from outside, or will they be confined to what they have heard in the Court?

Mr. Walker-Smith

The right hon. Gentleman must not suppose that there are no precedents for courts of mixed composition of this sort. The Railway and Canal Commission was one, the General Claims Tribunals were another, and the Lands Tribunal, which has legal and survey members, is another, and these Courts will follow the well established precedents in those cases.

Sir L. Ungoed-Thomas

The hon. and learned Gentleman has been asked a perfectly straight question, and we have had a most uninformative answer. He did not answer the question which has been put. Will they or will they not use the knowledge which they have outside, or will they be confined to the evidence which is put before them? It is a simple question and it should be given a straight answer.

Mr. Walker-Smith

I could understand the question being put by almost any other hon. Member of the Committee, but not by the hon. and learned Gentleman. I thought that the precedents I cited would have been a guide to the hon. and learned Gentleman, with the great experience he has in these matters. I should have thought that the position was reasonably clear. A lay member of a court, like anybody else in a judicial position, is guided by the evidence and the arguments adduced in the court, but in weighing and assessing the evidence and the arguments he is assisted by the general knowledge of these matters which he brings to the court.

Sir L. Ungoed-Thomas

I noticed that the hon. and learned Gentleman prefaced his remark by the covering phrase "I should have thought." I would have thought exactly the same thing, but what

the hon. and learned Gentleman has been asked is for the information of all hon. Members. We want to know what is the intention of the Government in this matter. Do they intend these lay members to draw upon their outside knowledge, or will this Court function in exactly the same way as the High Court, for instance, and be limited to the evidence given before the Court?

Mr. P. Thorneycroft

The hon. and learned Gentleman must not be too indignant about this matter. I agree that it is important that this information should be made clear to the Committee. The position seems to me to be perfectly plain. These men are chosen for their special knowledge—just what it will be we shall not know until we have decided about this Amendment—and they bring it into the Court with them; they obviously do not leave it outside. When it comes to a decision of the Court evidence will be given before the Court and must be given before it, just as it must before any other Division of the High Court, and it will be a question of their applying their knowledge to the evidence brought before them.

Mr. Fletcher-Cooke

At this late hour the Committee will not wish me to expand upon the reasons why I wish to do so, and I beg to ask leave to withdraw the Amendment.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.

Amendment proposed: In page 3, line 34, leave out second "of".—[Mrs. Castle.]

Question put, That "of" stand part of the Clause:—

The Committee divided: Ayes 153, Noes 95.

Division No. 141.] AYES [11.28 p.m.
Agnew, Cmdr. P. C. Bryan, P. du Cann, E. D. L.
Aitken, W. T. Butler, Rt. Hn. R. A. (Saffron Walden) Errington, Sir Eric
Allan, R. A. (Paddington, S.) Campbell, Sir David Farey-Jones, F. W.
Arbuthnot, John Carr, Robert Finlay, Graeme
Atkins, H. E. Cary, Sir Robert Fleetwood-Hesketh, R. F.
Balniel, Lord Channon, H. Fletcher-Cooke, G.
Barber, Anthony Clarke, Brig. Terence (Portsmth, W.) Fort, R.
Barlow, Sir John Conant, Maj. Sir Roger Foster, John
Barter, John Cooper, Sqn. Ldr. Albert Fraser, Sir Ian (M'cmbe & Lonsdale)
Baxter, Sir Beverley Cooper-Key, E. M. Freeth, D. K.
Bell, Philip (Bolton, E.) Cordeaux, Lt.-Col. J. K. George, J. C. (Pollok)
Bennett, F. M. (Torquay) Crosthwaite-Eyre, Col. O. E. Gibson-Watt, D.
Bidgood, J. C. Crouch, R. F. Glover, D.
Biggs-Davison, J. A. Cunningham, Knox Godber, J. B.
Bishop, F. P. Dance, J. C. G. Gower, H. R.
Body, R. F. D'Avigdor-Goldsmid, Sir Henry Graham, Sir Fergus
Braine, B. R. Digby, Simon Wingfield Grant, W. (Woodside)
Bromley-Davenport, Lt.-Col. W. H. Donaldson, Cmdr. C. E. McA. Grant-Ferris, Wg Cdr. R. (Nantwich)
Brooke, Rt. Hon. Henry Doughty, C. J. A. Green, A.
Grimston, Sir Robert (Westbury) Linstead, Sir H. N. Rodgers, John (Sevenoaks)
Grosvenor, Lt.-Col. R. G. Lucas-Tooth, Sir Hugh Ropner, Col. Sir Leonard
Gurden, Harold Macdonald, Sir Peter Scott-Miller, Cmdr. R.
Harvey, Ian (Harrow, E.) Maddan, Martin Shepherd, William
Heald, Rt. Hon. Sir Lionel Maitland, Cdr. J. F. W. (Horncastle) Simon, J. E. S. (Middlesbrough, W.)
Heath, Rt. Hon. E. R. G. Maitland, Hon. Patrick (Lanark) Smithers, Peter (Winchester)
Hill, Mrs. E. (Wythenshawe) Manningham-Buller, Rt. Hn. Sir R. Spearman, A. C. M.
Hinchingbrooke, Viscount Marples, A. E. Spens, Rt. Hn. Sir P. (Kens'gt'n, S.)
Hirst, Geoffrey Mathew, R. Studholme, H. G.
Holland-Martin, C. J. Maude, Angus Summers, G. S. (Aylesbury)
Holt, A. F. Maudling, Rt. Hon. R. Sumner, W. D. M. (Orpington)
Hope, Lord John Mawby, R. L. Teeling, W.
Horobin, Sir Ian Molson, A. H. E. Thompson, Lt.-Cdr. R. (Croydon, S.)
Howard, John (Test) Nabarro, G. D. N. Thorneycroft, Rt. Hon. P.
Hughes-Young, M. H. C. Neave, Airey Tilney, John (Wavertree)
Hutchison, Sir Ian Clark (E'b'gh, W.) O'Neill, Hn. Phelim (Co. Antrim, N.) Touche, Sir Gordon
Hyde, Montgomery Orr, Capt. L. P. S. Turner, H. F. L.
Iremonger, T. L. Orr-Ewing, Charles Ian (Hendon, N.) Turton, Rt. Hon. R. H.
Irvine, Bryant Godman (Rye) Page, R. G. Vickers, Miss J. H.
Jenkins, Robert (Dulwich) Pannell, N. A. (Kirkdale) Vosper, D. F.
Jennings, J. C. (Burton) Partridge, E. Wade, D. W.
Johnson, Dr. Donald (Carlisle) Pickthorn, K. W. M. Wakefield, Sir Wavell (St. M'lebone)
Johnson, Eric (Blackley) Pitman, I. J. Walker-Smith, D. C.
Joseph, Sir Keith Pitt, Miss E. M. Ward, Hon. George (Worcester)
Joynson-Hicks, Hon. Sir Lancelot Pott, H. P. Waterhouse, Capt. Rt. Hon. C.
Keegan, D. Powell, J. Enoch Whitelaw, W. S. I. (Penrith & Border)
Kerby, Capt. H. B. Price, David (Eastleigh) Williams, Paul (Sunderland, S.)
Kerr, H. W. Profumo, J. D. Wilson, Geoffrey (Truro)
Kershaw, J. A. Raikes, Sir Victor Woollam, John Victor
Kimball, M. Redmayne, M. Yates, William (The Wrekin)
Leavey, J. A. Renton, D. L. M.
Legge-Bourke, Maj. E. A. H. Rippon, A. G. F. TELLERS FOR THE AYES:
Legh, Hon. Peter (Petersfield) Robinson, Sir Roland (Blackpool, S.) Mr. Wills and Colonel J. H. Harrison.
Allen, Arthur (Bosworth) Howell, Denis (All Saints) Plummer, Sir Leslie
Allen, Scholefield (Crewe) Hubbard, T. F. Price, J. T. (Westhoughton)
Baird, J. Hughes, Cledwyn (Anglesey Price, Philips (Gloucestershire, W.)
Benson, G. Hughes, Emrys (S. Ayrshire) Proctor, W. T.
Blackburn, F. Hughes, Hector (Aberdeen, N.) Pryde, D. J.
Boardman, H. Hynd, J. B. (Attercliffe) Rhodes, H.
Bowden, H. W. (Leicester, S. W.) Irvine, A. J. (Edge Hill) Rogers, George (Kensington, N.)
Braddock, Mrs. Elizabeth Irving, S. (Dartford) Simmons, C. J. (Brierley Hill)
Brockway, A. F. Jay, Rt. Hon. D. P. T. Stewart, Michael (Fulham)
Broughton, Dr. A. D. D. Jenkins, Roy (Stechford) Strauss, Rt. Hon. George (Vauxhall)
Butler, Herbert (Hackney, C.) Jones, Jack (Rotherham) Swingler, S. T.
Carmichael, J. Jones, J. Idwal (Wrexham) Taylor, John (West Lothian)
Castle, Mrs. B. A. Jones, T. W. (Merioneth) Thomas, George (Cardiff)
Collick, P. H. (Birkenhead) Kenyon, C. Thomas, Iorwerth (Rhondda, W.)
Craddock, George (Bradford, S.) King, Dr. H. M. Ungoed-Thomas, Sir Lynn
Cronin, J. D. Lawson, G. M. Usborne, H. C.
Cullen, Mrs. A. Lee, Frederick (Newton) Warbey, W. N.
Dalton, Rt. Hon. H. Lewis, Arthur Watkins, T. E.
Davies, Ernest (Enfield, E.) Lipton, Lt.-Col. M. Weitzman, D.
Dodds, N. N. Mabon, Dr. J. Dickson Wells, William (Walsall, N.)
Donnelly, D. L. MacColl, J. E. West, D. G.
Ede, Rt. Hon. J. C. MacPherson, Malcolm (Stirling) Wheeldon, W. E.
Edwards, Rt. Hon. Ness (Caerphilly) Mallalieu, J. P. W. (Huddersfd, E.) Wilkins, W. A.
Evans, Albert (Islington, S. W.) Mikardo, Ian Williams, David (Neath)
Fletcher, Eric Mitchison, G. R. Williams, Rev. Llywelyn (Ab'tillery)
Gibson, C. W. Morris, Percy (Swansea, W.) Williams, W. R. (Openshaw)
Gordon Walker, Rt. Hon. P. C. Mort, D. L. Willis, Eustace (Edinburgh, E.)
Griffiths, William (Exchange) Mulley, F. W. Winterbottom, Richard
Harrison, J. (Nottingham, N.) Oliver, G. H. Zilliacus, K.
Hayman, F. H. Oram, A. E.
Hobson, C. R. Oswald, T. TELLERS FOR THE NOES:
Holman, P. Parker, J. Mr. Pearson and Mr. Holmes.
Houghton, Douglas Peart, T. F.

Question put and agreed to.

Sir L. Ungoed-Thomas

I beg to move, That the Chairman do report Progress and ask leave to sit again.

We have had a long, exhaustive and exhausting experience in the last many hours. We have had a long debate on this last Amendment alone, and we are coming now to some others which I hope will not take very long but which will require a little consideration. Perhaps, therefore, it would be for everybody's convenience if we could rise at this stage. I should be glad if the President of the Board of Trade could let us know his intentions in this regard?

Mr. P. Thorneycroft

I am quite content with that course. As the hon. and learned Gentleman says, we are coming to other Amendments, and if we approach them with fresh minds I hope that they will require even shorter consideration than otherwise might be the case.

Committee report Progress; to sit again upon Monday next.

Forward to