HC Deb 28 March 1957 vol 567 c1333
32. Mr. Lewis

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he is aware that on one racecourse the owner has introduced a special heavy financial payment by off course bookmakers using her telephone service; whether he is aware that such a system operated by Mer Majesty's Government on a tax basis could earn revenue for Her Majesty's Government; and whether, in his forthcoming Budget, he will consider introducing a special off course bookmakers' betting tax on telephone services.

Mr. Powell

I cannot anticipate my right hon. Friend's Budget.

Mr. Lewis

Without anticipating the Budget, is the Financial Secretary not aware that every day of the week, other than Sunday, in the afternoons and evenings hundreds of thousands of pounds are turned over upon which no tax is paid? Will he at least consult hon. Gentlemen on that side of the House and on this, including myself, to give us an opportunity of explaining to him how he can get millions of pounds a year into the Treasury by just taxing these off-course bookmakers and thus avoid cutting the social services?

Mr. Powell

In preparing his Budget, my right hon. Friend will, naturally, consider all methods of fortifying the revenue.

Mr. E. Johnson

Is my hon. Friend aware that, in spite of Mrs. Topham's attempt to anticipate my right hon. Friend's Budget, the "blower" service is working perfectly normally today without any payment to Mrs. Topham?