§ 3.30 p.m.
The Chancellor of the Exchequer (Mr. Derick Heathcoat Amory)
Listening to a Budget speech is one of the most severe of the annual austerities that Members of Parliament lay upon themselves. It is, I suppose, one of those disciplines that are considered formative of our national character.
I do not know whether it is merely self-pity, or whether I am right in thinking that have a rather particularly difficult task today. I remember reading that after listening to the performance of a violin solo someone said to Dr. Johnson, "Sir, a very difficult piece to render, that", to which the Doctor replied, "Difficult, do you call it, Sir! I wish it were impossible". I hope that the Committee will not feel the same way about my performance today.