HC Deb 13 December 1956 vol 562 cc615-6
31. Mr. Bellenger

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what action Her Majesty's Government propose to take with regard to amendment of the law relating to British nationality and allegiance consequent upon the decision of the other House sitting in a judicial capacity in the case of Prince Ernest Augustus of Hanover.

32. Captain Duncan

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what revision of the law he proposes to introduce as a result of the recent decision in the case of Prince Ernest of Hanover; and what estimate he has formed of the numbers affected by this decision.

Major Lloyd-George

It has been estimated that the number of persons affected by the recent decision may be of the order of 400. The effects of the decision are still being studied and I am not at present in a position to make any statement.

Mr. Bellenger

I appreciate the necessity for time to enable the Home Secretary and his advisers to consider the full implications of the case, but will the Home Secretary bear in mind the whole question of dual nationality whereby British citizens holding British passports and, presumably, owing allegiance to Her Majesty, also owe some sort of allegiance to other countries? Will he bear in mind also that an individual should make up his mind to whom he owes allegiance?

Major Lloyd-George

That is, of course, one of the many problems that arise as a result of the decision. I can assure the right hon. Gentleman that all these considerations are being borne in mind.

Captain Duncan

Does my right hon. and gallant Friend appreciate that some at least of the 400, now that they have been found to be British subjects, may well be traitors for having taken up arms against Her Majesty? Will he seriously consider initiating legislation so that any of these Royal or ex-Royal personages will have to apply for British nationality if they want it?

Major Lloyd-George

That is one consideration, but I can assure my hon. and gallant Friend that it is only one of a lot of complicated possibilities.