HC Deb 17 April 1957 vol 568 cc1923-5
Mr. Gaitskell

May I ask the Leader of the House whether he will announce the business for the first week after Easter?

The Secretary of State for the Home Department and Lord Privy Seal (Mr. R. A. Butler)

Yes, Sir. The business for the first week after the Easter Recess will be as follows:

TUESDAY, 30TH APRIL—Supply[10th Allotted Day]: Committee.

Debate on Britain's Power Resources.

WEDNESDAY, 1ST MAY—Committee stage of the Ways and Means Resolution relating to National Health Service Contributions.

Report and Third Reading of the National Insurance Bill.

Consideration of the Motion to approve the Representation of the People (Scotland) Regulations.

THURSDAY, 2ND MAY—Report stage of the Ways and Means Resolution relating to National Health Service contributions, when the Bill will be brought in.

Committee stage of the Naval Discipline Bill, which it is hoped to obtain by about 7.30 p.m.

Second Reading of the Naval and Marine Reserves Pay Bill.

Report and Third Reading of the Export Guarantees Bill.

Committee and Third Reading of the House of Commons Members' Fund Bill.

Second Reading of the Church of Scotland (Property and Endowments) Bill [Lords].

FRIDAY, 3RD MAY—Consideration of Private Members' Motions.

Mr. Gaitskell

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that on Tuesday, 30th April, we should wish to raise not only the question of the nuclear energy programme but also that of oil supplies, and that we have put down the Votes of the Departments concerned with these matters? Can he tell us when the Services Estimates are likely to be debated?

Mr. Butler

I note that the Votes that have been put down are Class IX, Votes 5, 6 and 7, and Class I, Vote 23. I think that they cover the points which the right hon. Gentleman wants to raise. If not, perhaps he will take the necessary steps.

I cannot give an exact date for the Service Estimates, which will be published after Easter, but suitable days will be chosen to discuss them after the business that I have announced.

Mr. Ross

Will the Leader of the House consult the Secretary of State for Scotland and see that if he wishes to repeat the unrewarding experience of keeping the Scottish Standing Committee up all night he will consider the advisability of giving warning, if not to Members of the Committee, at least to the staff of the House?

Mr. Butler

I am sure that nobody could feel that my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Scotland is otherwise than most courteous in all matters. I feel sure that he will have all these matters in mind. I would also like to say that progress was made in the course of the discussions, although the sitting was unduly protracted. The responsibility for that cannot be laid at the door of any one Member or any one side of the Committee. Furthermore, I would like to make this appeal. The Scottish Standing Committee has a great tradition for getting through business. I hope that in the future it will make sufficient progress with the Housing and Town Development (Scotland) Bill to maintain its ancient and honourable tradition.

Mr. Shepherd

Will my right hon. Friend consider the desirability of having a debate upon industrial relations, at an early and convenient date, seeing that we all too seldom discuss this issue, on broad principles?

Mr. Butler

Apart from any subject that may be put down by the Opposition. I will certainly discuss this matter with my right hon. Friend the Minister of Labour.

Mr. Emrys Hughes

Is the Leader of the House aware that nobody doubts the courtesy of the Secretary of State for Scotland? What is in question is his perspicacity. Will not he look at the record of these proceedings to see whether a change is not really necessary in this Department?

Mr. Butler

The answer to that question is definitely, "No."

Mr. Ross

May I press the Leader of the House on this matter? Does he not think that it would be much more expeditious, from the business point of view, if, at its sittings, the Scottish Grand Committee could be told when it was likely to rise?

Mr. Butler

The trouble is that one never knows.

Mr. Hector Hughes

I want to draw the attention of the Leader of the House to a very practical aspect of the flatter which has just been put to him, namely, that no means of transport were provided for Members, who separated at about five o'clock in the morning. Will not the Leader of the House, in consultation with the Secretary of State for Scotland, take steps to obviate such an occurrence in future?

Mr. Speaker

I hardly think that that is a question relating to business for the week after we come back.