HC Deb 23 April 1958 vol 586 cc969-1003
(1) Where in the case of an application for the grant or renewal of a slaughterhouse licence in respect of any premises received by a local authority after the date of the passing of this Act, being an application—
(a) for the grant of a new slaughterhouse licence; or
5 (b) in respect of premises in respect of which a new slaughterhouse licence has been granted since the said date; or
(c) in respect of premises in the case of which a holder of a slaughterhouse licence in respect of those premises has been convicted of an offence by virtue of subsection (2) of this section,
10 it appears to the authority that the proposed slaughterhall forms part of a building another part of which, being a part within the curtilage of those premises, is, or is proposed to be, used or adapted for use as a dwelling, then, subject to subsection (2) of section five of this Act, the authority shall refuse the application forthwith unless they are satisfied that, if the licence is granted or renewed, no part of that building within the curtilage of those premises will be used as a dwelling at any time while the licence is in force.
20 (2) Where after the date of the passing of this Act a slaughterhouse licence is in force in respect of any premises, then, if any person causes or permits to be used as a dwelling any part of a building which contains a slaughterhall, being a part within the curtilage of those premises, he shall be guilty of an offence under the principal Act:
25 Provided that this subsection shall not apply if that part has been appropriated as a dwelling continuously since before the date aforesaid and no application to which the foregoing subsection applies has been made in respect of those premises since that date.
(3) If a person convicted of an offence by virtue of the last foregoing subsection is the holder of a slaughterhouse licence in respect of the premises in question, the court may, addition to any other punishment, cancel the licence.
30 (4) It shall be the duty of every local authority to enforce and execute in their district the provisions of subsection (2) of this section, and sections one hundred and eighteen to one hundred and twenty of the principal Act (which relate to appeals) shall apply for the purposes of this section as if this section were contained in that Act.
35 (5) In this section the expression "slaughterhall" means that part of a slaughterhouse in which the actual slaughtering of any animal or the dressing of carcases takes place.—[Mr. Hare.]

Brought up, and read the First time.

4.1 p.m.

The Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (Mr. John Hare)

I beg to move, That the Clause be read a Second time.

Mr. Frederick Willey (Sunderland, North)

On a point of order, Mr. Speaker. You will appreciate that the Bill falls naturally into three parts. One part deals with the Slaughter of Animals Act and is merely declaratory. The second part deals with safety, health and welfare. You will realise, Mr. Speaker, that the Clause was not before the Standing Committee until the end of its proceedings when there was, it was agreed, not an opportunity to put down Amendments and discuss it. The other part of the Bill is the part to which we object, and you will appreciate from the Notice Paper, Mr. Speaker, that it has been almost entirely rewritten. In these circumstances, I rise to ask whether there is any opportunity of having a second Second Reading debate.

Mr. Speaker

I have never heard of such a proposal, and I should be loath to give an assent which would create such a precedent for the future.

Mr. Hare

I am very glad, despite what the hon. Member for Sunderland, North (Mr. Willey) has said, that this Clause, which opens our proceedings on the Report stage, goes a long way to meet the points which were raised in Standing Committee by the right hon. Member for Blyth (Mr. Robens) and the hon. Gentleman. I have read the proceedings of the Standing Committee, and I have been anxious to help meet the requirements put forward as far as I could reasonably do so.

We were particularly asked to ensure that where new slaughterhouses are built the slaughterhall should not be connected to a dwelling. I think that in the case of new slaughterhouses that is right. Local authorities would, of course, under their planning powers be able to deal with this matter, but I accept that what I am proposing gives an absolute guarantee that local authorities will do what they are able to do. It is for that reason that I put forward the new Clause.

The effect of the Clause is that in a new slaughterhouse the slaughterhall must not be attached to a dwelling. Hon. Members also argued in the earlier stages that this principle should be applied either immediately or in the near future to existing slaughterhouses. I cannot see my way to legislate in that respect. I do not consider that we could reasonably apply this provision generally to existing slaughterhouses which are otherwise satisfactory.

Having said that, I do not think that this necessarily means that no improvement will take place. First, I believe that many of the slaughterhouses which hon. Members have in mind as being unsatisfactory are likely to fail, for various reasons, to come up to the standards of the new regulations and, therefore, will cease to be used as slaughterhouses. Others may require extensions beyond their present premises to bring them up to standard, and, there again, the planning authority will have power to ensure that the slaughterhalls are not attached to dwelling-houses.

However, I think we can go a little further than merely confining the Clause to new slaughterhouses. We are suggesting that where the slaughterhouse ceases to be used for a time and is then reopened with a new licence the ban which we are proposing should apply. It would also do so if the dwelling ceased for a time to be used. In other cases our conclusion is that it would be unreasonable to use the Bill to enforce a big change in the use of other slaughterhouses which are for other reasons entirely satisfactory.

I hope that the House will accept this proposal as being reasonable and as going a long way to meet what hon. Gentlemen opposite had in mind, and that they will think fit not to press their Amendments to apply this procedure immediately to all slaughterhouses.

Mr. Willey

We welcome the Minister to our debate. We were sorry that he could not take part in our discussions in the Standing Committee, but we are very glad that his appearance has meant that the Government have, at any rate, gone so far to meet us on this very important matter.

There was a very exhaustive discussion about this in Standing Committee. It is really very surprising that in this day and age it should take the greatest of pressure from the Opposition to get even such a concession as this. What we asked for was that slaughterhouses should not be adjoining and attached to domestic dwelling-houses. I should have thought—I realise that we shall disappoint the right hon. Gentleman in this—that we had reached a stage at which we ought properly to insist that no slaughterhouses should be attached to dwelling-houses in any circumstances at all. For that reason, while we welcome the new Clause, we are disappointed that it has not gone as far as we expected. For that reason, we have tabled our Amendments. I will not pursue the matter any further now, because we shall deal with it when we reach the Amendments.

I have one or two points to make about the Clause. The right hon. Gentleman will realise, and the Parliamentary Secretary will recall, that the argument in Committee was about planning powers. We consulted the authorities to ascertain what the position about planning powers was, and we were informed—I think this was largely the Parliamentary Secretary's case—that this could be done in respect of future slaughterhouses through planning powers. Therefore, while I welcome the new Clause, I should like the Government to say something about that aspect of the matter, because I think that the Parliamentary Secretary would concede that he reached the point where he was opposed to us only on the matter of planning powers

I concede at once that if we can persuade the Minister to accept our Amendments the point about planning powers will not be valid, because I think powers are needed under the present Bill if we are to deal with existing slaughterhouses.

The Joint Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (Mr. J. B. Godber)

Just in relation to new slaughterhouses?

Mr. Willey

Yes. I am not using this in an unfriendly way at all, but this was the point that was made, and I think that both the hon. Gentleman and the Minister will agree that we are entitled to some explanation. Otherwise, there might be a suggestion that we are deliberately creating an overlap of powers. Let me make our position quite clear. We welcome this approach and think that it should be in the Bill, but as, towards the end of our discussions in Committee, the Parliamentary Secretary very largely rested on planning powers, we should have some assurance that this will not ca use any inconvenience.

Having said that, I will reserve our views until we reach the Amendments, save for this one point. The Minister is aware that we are dealing here not with slaughterhouses but with slaughter-halls. I appreciate that there might be technical difficulties relating to slaughterhouses. There may be exceptions—large abattoirs where a dwelling may be part of the premises. I recognise that difficulty, but if that is the reason for our dealing with slaughterhalls rather than slaughterhouses, surely it would have been better to have made an exception of such premises instead of legislating only for slaughterhalls.

We have not put down an Amendment, because it would have been extraordinarily difficult to draft, and we do not want to discourage the Government from doing some good. This is a rather disappointing approach. The Government have conceded our case about future licences, but have taken a limited approach by confining their attention to slaughterhalls. I think that the House will wish to be satisfied that it is impossible to go further and to legislate against slaughterhouses, as such, being attached to or part of dwelling-houses.

Dr. Barnett Stross (Stoke-on-Trent, Central)

When we discussed this in Committee, the Parliamentary Secretary at first felt that he could not give way at all. I need not trouble the House with his reasons, because almost everyone now present heard them then. None the less, we must protest very strongly at the Minister now offering us such little comfort as is contained in this new Clause. We may not have another opportunity to do anything for many years to come. A principle is involved in this new Clause, just as there is an essential and vital principle in the Bill as a whole.

We had long arguments about this, because members of the Committee wanted to improve the facilities for the country as a whole, and did their best to put their point of view to the Parliamentary Secretary. Here, we are asked to face the fact that the Minister feels that there are slaughterhalls which, but for the fact that there is living accommodation attached to them, are satisfactory in every way, and he says that if they are not satisfactory we need not worry, because the new regulations will be such that they will have to close.

4.15 p.m.

If that be the case, could he not have brought the problem before us in another way? We fear that the regulations are not as tight as all that. We do not think that they are comprehensive or advanced enough to provide what we have in mind, namely, a step towards a method of slaughtering that will bring us in line with the most advanced countries in the world. His explanation in defending this new Clause does not satisfy us very much more than did the Parliamentary Secretary's at an earlier stage.

Whether because of vision or of obnoxious smells, we feel that to have these slaughterhalls where people are living has nothing to commend it. In Committee, we spoke about the vermin that are attracted to these places, and there was a considerable discussion as to whether the rat or the bluebottle was the worst. My hon. Friend the Member for Barking (Mr. Hastings) took me to task quite strenuously because I thought that the rat was worse and more difficult to exterminate than the bluebottle. However that may be, it is obnoxious to us even to think about it, let alone to have to live in such circumstances. The hon. Member for Leominster (Mr. Baldwin) described the very worst type of these slaughterhalls, or slaughterhouses, as "holes in the wall", and I hope that he will give us the benefit of his views on the subject today.

The Minister has not gone far enough to please us, and we think it is a great mistake. Present British slaughtering and meat inspection practice is by no means as good as we wish it to be, and we do not think that either the Bill or the new Clause promises us a very much better prospect.

Mr. Sidney Dye (Norfolk, South-West)

The new Clause is limited in its scope, and will not apply to every slaughterhouse. After much argument, the Minister has conceded that all new slaughterhouses shall be built separate from ordinary dwelling-houses. There are several reasons for that—noise, smell, and attraction to flies and vermin. In addition, many of us feel that children should not be brought up in premises overlooking a slaughterhouse. Indeed, that is one of our strongest reasons for advocating this step. We have found in the past that these small slaughterhouses built on to or adjoining living accommodation have not been in the best interests of the children living in the houses.

The new Clause means that we shall, in future, have two types of slaughterhouses: those built separate from all residential accommodation—as they should be—and those others, on which the owners will spend money so as to maintain them in good condition, and such buildings will remain in existence for many years. The new Clause should have provided only a limited period of life for those buildings allowed to remain at present, and the owners informed, so as to avoid our having two distinct standards, one for the new, and one for the old type of building.

That is what the Clause perpetuates. It is a weakness on the part of the Government, this halting, hesitating Government, in dealing with these matters. They could have acted in a clear and straight-forward manner, but they need a good deal of persuading to take any action. In this, they have gone only half way, and that is their weakness and their failure.

Mr. F. H. Hayman (Falmouth and Camborne)

I receive this Clause with somewhat mixed feelings. I am grateful to the Minister for having gone some way to meet the points which were raised in Committee with so much feeling. On the other hand, as my hon. Friend the Member for Norfolk, South-West (Mr. Dye) said, we fear that even now some horrible places may be allowed to be used for a number of years. I hope that it will be possible to strengthen the Clause along the lines we are now suggesting. Can the Minister tell us how many of these bad slaughterhouses there are? His Department must have collected an enormous amount of information, and it should be easy to ascertain that fact.

Reference has been made to planning powers. In Committee, the Parliamentary Secretary seemed to suggest that it was the affair not of his Ministry, but of the Ministry of Housing and Local Government. However, when I questioned the Minister of Housing and Local Government, I was told that this was a matter for the planning authorities. In many rural areas the planning authority is the county authority, many members of which will not know precisely all the details of a slaughterhouse. A councillor in such a position might then be guided by information given to him by people more familiar with the locality who might have certain interests affecting their judgment. The second tier authorities may be right in asking that this power should be delegated to them.

Reference has been made to pests and vermin. It was I who raised the question of bluebottles. Some years ago, I lived in a modern house which was half a mile away from a slaughterhouse, yet we were infested by bluebottles which apparently came from the slaughterhouse. As a child, I lived not far from the sort of slaughterhouse which we have in mind. It was a dreadful place, although in those days we took it for granted. However, not only children but adults of a nervous disposition are revolted and shocked when slaughterhouses are atttached to dwelling-houses. Such a slaughterhall is wholly obnoxious. I do not want to introduce class feeling, but hon. Members opposite know quite well that halls such as that do not exist where they live. They exist only in areas of congested population and are attached only to houses which are occupied by workers.

Mr. R. E. Winterbottom (Sheffield, Brightside)

I fully realise that if we are to get through all the business which we want to conclude today, it will be necessary to curtail some of our speeches. Therefore, what I have to say about this Clause will be brief.

I want the Minister clearly to realise that the new Clause will apply only to new slaughterhouses while allowing thousands of slaughterhouses which are now unfit for slaughtering animals to continue to exist. If the Minister is prepared to accept the Opposition's Amendment, which, if not going as far as we would like——

Mr. Speaker

We cannot anticipate that. We must wait till we get an opportunity of proposing the Amendments and hearing the discussions.

Mr. Winterbottom

We are discussing how far this new Clause will affect new slaughterhouses alone. Some part of the new Clause must be deleted if we are to deal effectively with the existing slaughterhouses about which we complain, and those parts would he deleted by certain Amendments to be moved in the course of time.

What is the Minister's opinion on this matter? If he is prepared to delete certain conditions in the new Clause, even though that will not go as far as we would like to meet some of our objections, we should be able to support the new Clause. The Minister has not done his best in this legislation. He could have introduced a simple Clause applying the principle in this new Clause to all slaughterhouses, those now in existence and those to be built. Had he done that, he would have rendered a service to the slaughtering industry, but he has not done so.

As it stands, the new Clause will deal only with new slaughterhouses while leaving unaffected for years to come those within the precincts of dwelling-houses.

Mr. John Hare

On the whole, hon. Members have welcomed this new Clause in so far as I have been able to go. I am sorry to disappoint the hon. Member for Brightside (Mr. Winterbottom), but I am not prepared to alter the new Clause, which I have thought about very carefully and put in its present form for the reasons I have given the House. The hon. Member for Sunderland, North (Mr. Willey) asked whether there would be any overlapping as a result of the Clause since local authorities had certain obligations imposed on them. I do not think that it is overlapping, but the Clause will make it abundantly clear to every local authority that it is its duty to enforce this provision where new slaughterhouses are concerned.

The hon. Member also asked why the Clause applied to slaughterhalls and not to slaughterhouses as well. The best reason for not legislating against slaughterhouses as such is that it may well he desirable, on planning and social grounds, to have a dwelling-house quite close to the lairage area for the convenience of the man who looks after the animals in the lairage. Again, this is a matter which we must leave to the good judgment of local authorities.

I have explained to hon. Members—and I hope that this will allay some of the fears of the hon. Member for Falmouth and Camborne (Mr. Hayman)—that many of the slaughterhouses which they have in mind will be eliminated because they will not come up to the required standards.

Mr. Winterbottom

But does not the Minister agree that it will be possible to alter certain slaughterhouses which are within the precincts of dwelling-houses, and which are now being used, so as to bring them within the regulations?

Mr. Hare

I said that some will continue. But a very large number of exactly the kind of case that hon. Members have in mind will not qualify under the new regulations. Also, all those which will have to have their premises extended will come under the local authorities for planning permission. Therefore, I think that I can honestly say that many of the fears which I know hon. Gentlemen feel will be removed.

4.30 p.m.

Mr. Alfred Robens (Blyth)

There are two weaknesses in the new Clause, which, I must say, the explanation given by the Minister has not met. First, I should like to join my hon. Friend the Member for Sunderland, North (Mr. Willey) in welcoming the Minister to this debate on the Bill. It was not his Bill originally. The Chancellor of the Exchequer produced it, and the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Sudbury and Woodbridge (Mr. Hare) has, therefore, had to read through the OFFICIAL REPORT of many hours of our proceedings in Committee in order to produce these provisions. We appreciate that he is trying to meet the points we put. I should like also to tell the right hon. Gentleman of the very good service rendered by his hon. Friend the Parliamentary Secretary on the Bill. We on this side should like to compliment the hon. Gentleman on the very efficient way he handled our business and the kindly consideration that he gave to all the matters we put to him.

The first of the two weaknesses which have not been cleared up to our satisfaction is that the new Clause still has not brought in sight the end of present slaughterhouses attached to dwelling-houses. I am very sorry that the Minister has not felt able to put into the Clause a time limit, which, probably would still have to have an exception, perhaps at the Minister's or the local authority's discretion. Unless the Minister is prepared to look again at this matter of a time limit for existing slaughterhouses attached to dwelling-houses, when shall we get rid of these slaughterhouses, which no one is prepared to defend?

The expert hon. Member for Leominster (Mr. Baldwin), himself said that he did not like this kind of slaughterhouse and referred to some of them as no better than a hole in the wall. I agree with his description. They are there at the moment because they meet a specific purpose and they come within the licensing arrangements. No one considers that they ought to continue, yet, although the opportunity to dispose of them is now before us, we are not taking advantage of it.

It may well be that the Minister will say that, if he were to put into the Clause a five-year limit, there would still be, at the end of five years, some very special case for a slaughterhouse attached to a dwelling-house to continue. I do not disagree that that might well be so, but what the right hon. Gentleman could do would be to put in a time limit of five years, or whatever he thought appropriate, according to the best advice he could get, and then permit an extension at the discretion of the Minister and/or the local authority, whichever he thought best. Unless he is prepared to look at this matter again and, perhaps, introduce an Amendment in another place, he will not really satisfy what the Parliamentary Secretary said in Committee, which, I am sure, represented everyone's point of view, that we were not very happy about dwelling-houses and slaughterhouses being associated.

We shall not divide upon the Second Reading of the new Clause, but I ask the Minister to consider whether it is practicable to put in a time limit so that we can say that, at a certain point, such slaughterhouses will go out of existence altogether, except for those where a very special case can be made for retention for a further period.

The other weakness is that the separation from the dwelling-house is related, in the Clause, solely to a slaughterhall. I know that I should not go too deeply into all the discussion that we had in Standing Committee, and it will, perhaps, be sufficient for me to refer the right hon. Gentleman to the recommendations of the inter-departmental Committee. That Committee never recommended that a dwelling-house should be associated with a slaughterhouse, nor did it in fact, to my knowledge, recommend that a slaughterhall should be the only thing not attached to a dwelling-house. In fact, the Committee included a number of other considerations which are listed. I should have thought, therefore, there is the weakness in the Clause that we are not dealing entirely with the complete separation of all the necessary preparatory and other work in the slaughtering of animals to make sure that it is completely separated from the dwelling-house.

I understand the Minister's point that it may well be that drovers and others responsible for the animals should live close by so that they will be able to take care of them. But I am not at all sure that we have followed the actual recommendations of the inter-departmental Committee as closely as we might have done in this Clause. Therefore, while recognising that there is something to be said for a dwelling-house being reasonably close to a lairage, I still feel that the right hon. Gentleman could, without giving anything away, look at the matter again and, perhaps in another place, deal with the two weaknesses to which I have just drawn attention.

Mr. George Darling (Sheffield, Hillsborough)

May I invite the Minister to answer the question put by my hon. Friend the Member for Falmouth and Camborne (Mr. Hayman) about the number of slaughterhouses in the country which are adjacent to dwelling-houses? Surely, this legislation has not been produced out of ignorance. The Minister must know what he is dealing with, how many slaughterhouses there are in this situation and what legislation is needed to deal with the matter.

Mr. John Hare

If I may, first, respond briefly to what the right hon. Member for Blyth (Mr. Robens) said, I very much appreciate what he said about my hon. Friend, which, I know, gave him very great pleasure, and I appreciate his welcome to me, also. I wish that I could meet the right hon. Gentleman's points. I have given much thought to the matter. If I may say so, I thought that the right hon. Gentleman put his arguments very reasonably and fairly. But, I feel that I tried to put my case very reasonably and fairly, too. I should have liked to help, but I cannot.

I cannot give the hon. Member for Hillsborough (Mr. Darling) an exact figure; I wish I could. I know that there is a considerable number of them and they are chiefly in the rural areas. Contrary, I think, to what the hon. Member for Falmouth and Camborne (Mr. Hayman) suggested, they are to be found more in the villages than in the centres of population. I should not like to give any figures unless I knew them to be accurate.

Mr. Darling

This is fantastic. We are told that 4,000 slaughterhouses are now licensed in the country. We have been dealing with this Bill off and on now for many months. During that time, it should have been possible to find out the condition of those 4,000 slaughterhouses. It is not a very great number. I cannot understand why the Ministry, instead of finding out what the situation is, has produced legislation obviously based on a mass of ignorance.

Dr. Stross

I have a question on an important point which I should like to put to the Minister. If the right hon. Gentleman will refer to col. 440 of our proceedings in Standing Committee, he will find it there reported that my hon. Friend the Member for Sunderland, North (Mr. Willey) specifically quoted a case from his area where a slaughterhouse is in a school. It was one of a number of cases he described. Does the Minister's refusal to go further with us on the Clause mean that, if this particular abattoir, which is attached to a school, conforms with regulations, there is no power then which can remove it? I feel that we ought to know about that.

Mr. Hare

I will certainly take note of what the hon. Gentleman has said. I have been looking at the reference made by the hon. Gentleman. I cannot give him an answer off-hand, but I would have thought that it was very doubtful in that the local authority, with its planning powers, will have a considerable say in this matter. Existing slaughterhouses may have to be brought up to certain conditions and standards.

Question put and agreed to.

Clause read a Second time.

Mr. Willey

I beg to move, as an Amendment to the proposed Clause, in line 3, to leave out from "Act" to the end of line 9.

Perhaps the following Amendment, to leave out lines 22 to 25 of the proposed Clause, can be taken with this one, Mr. Deputy-Speaker.

I should like to make one point, first, about the difficulties that we have had over Amendments. We first had notice of this new Clause on Tuesday, 25th March, when it appeared on the Notice Paper, but on the following day an addition was made, which demanded the most meticulous reading to discover the changes that were being proposed. This has happened to most of the Amendments which have been put down by the Government. It has put us to a very great trouble and has probably put the taxpayer to some expense. I have not followed this new Clause to see whether further changes have been made to it but we have been in difficulty and I take this opportunity of making that general protest.

We are making a straightforward point in these Amendments, and I am sorry, having given him modest encouragement, that the right hon. Gentleman has proved so disappointing on this matter. I hope that when he has heard the discussion he will be favourably disposed to the point that we are making.

In short, what we are saying is that we ought now to introduce legislation to ensure that no slaughterhalls—which is not as ambitious as we were in Standing Committee—should be attached to private dwellings. We are reinforced in this view, because it was obviously the view taken by the inter-departmental Committee. I refer briefly to the fact that in Appendix IL where the Committee set out the minimum essential requirements of a slaughterhouse, the first requirement was: The slaughterhouse buildings must not adjoin or form part of a building used as a dwelling-house. I point out, incidentally, that the interdepartmental Committee, with its expert knowledge, did not distinguish between slaughterhalls and slaughterhouses. The fact that the Minister has limited this proposal to slaughterhouses makes the problem, I should have thought, a less difficult one to tackle. The first point, therefore, that we make is that this is something that was recommended by the inter-departmental Committee and, for that reason, ought to be accepted by the Government.

Quite apart from that, we had an extensive debate upon this matter in Standing Committee. I am astonished that anyone should argue today that slaughterhouses should be attached to private dwellings. The hon. Member for Newcastle-upon-Tyne, North (Mr. R. W. Elliott) said, "How can you have in our urban localities a slaughterhouse which is not attached to, near to, or adjoining a private dwelling?" The Minister has answered that point. He has said that as far as provision for the future is made slaughter-halls will not be allowed to be adjoining or attached to a dwelling-house.

I should like to put to the hon. Member for Newcastle-upon-Tyne, North the point that my hon. Friends and I put in Committee. We are dealing with slaughterhouses which were opened after decontrol in 1954. I cannot for the life of me see why we should not say to people who, in the enlightened year of 1954, opened slaughterhouses attached to or forming part of a dwelling-house that they ought to be forthwith closed. I can see no hardship in that. I have no sympathy for anyone who as recently as 1954 started to slaughter animals—and this is what it means—in a private dwelling-house. I said—and it is a fact which can be repeated in respect of almost every other urban area—that we have a slaughterhouse in Sunderland which is in the basement of a shop and dwelling-house. Surely that is a shocking state of affairs that ought to be stopped forthwith.

4.45 p.m.

When the Parliamentary Secretary talks about planning powers he will realise that this argument is against him on this Amendment. Whereas it is arguable that planning powers can be used regarding future licences, the local authority associations have made it clear that planning power cannot be used to tackle this problem. What the right hon. Gentleman and the Parliamentary Secretary are saying today is that they are not prepared to stop what I should have thought was an obvious, patent public scandal, something which affronts public decency.

So far, we have not had any argument from the Government to disturb oar belief. My hon. Friend the Member for Hillsborough (Mr. Darling) has asked a very relevant question. If the Government were aware of the position, they might argue that to take this step would interfere with meat distribution. But no such case has been put before us. In fact, as my hon. Friend said, such a case cannot be made out. No one—and I defy any hon. Member on this—can produce any evidence of protestation against our proposal. No one in the meat trade has protested. I am sure that the meat trade, as well as anyone else, recognises that the sooner these abominable slaughterhouses are closed the better it will be for everyone.

I join with my right hon. Friend the Member for Blyth (Mr. Robens) in paying tribute to the Joint Parliamentary Secretary for the way in which he conducted the proceedings on the Bill in Committee. We said—and I think that this is conceded—that the Parliamentary Secretary, unfortunately, is often limited in the concessions that he can make, but it is very disappointing, now that the Minister has joined the Parliamentary Secretary, that the Government persist in the same attitude.

Why should the Government refuse to meet us on this point? It is, in all conscience, a very modest request. I agree that I think it is a bad thing to have slaughterhouses adjoined or overlooked by schools. The hon. Member for Newcastle-upon-Tyne, North would argue against us if we went as far as that. But this is a very modest proposal. We say that these slaughterhouses are easily identifiable. There are abominable slaughterhouse-basement premises in domestic dwelling-houses in almost any town. We hope that the Minister will agree with us that it is high time that these slaughterhouses were closed.

I hope that the Minister realises that this is a matter of public concern and that we intend to press the Amendment to a Division, if necessary. I hope that he will say that he will meet us on our proposal to close forthwith slaughterhouses which are in the basements of private dwellings, in rooms in private dwellings or attached to private dwellings. In spite of his anticipatory remarks about this Amendment. I hope that when he has heard the arguments advanced in support of it he will agree to accept it.

Mr. Darling

I beg to second the Amendment.

First, as I have done so frequently in the Committee, I should like to express disagreement with the view of the Minister that the new regulations will get rid of a lot of the small slaughterhouses now in existence. I have challenged that view consistently throughout the Committee stage and I challenge it now. I am quite willing to get in touch with the right hon. Gentleman in two or three years' time and check with him the number of slaughterhouses put out of existence by the regulations. I am sure that the number will be infinitesimal, because the regulations will not do the job for which they are designed. I have tried to adduce evidence to prove my point, and neither the Parliamentary Secretary nor any of his dumb followers could challenge the views which I have expressed.

In our Amendments to the proposed new Clause we are asking that these old slaughterhouses which are attached to dwellings shall not be approved. There is a side to the argument on which I find the Government's attitude difficult to understand. They do not know how many slaughterhouses of this type we are dealing with. We are completely ignorant of the effect of the legislation with which we are now dealing. Of course, that is not uncommon with a Conservative Administration. But let us assume that there are many of these slaughterhouses attached to dwellings. Of course, the dwellings will be owned by the people who own the slaughterhouses adjoining.

During the last five or six years the Conservative Government have been putting forward two propositions which are directly related to this matter. One is that under their administration traders in this country have never been so well off as they are now, which surely means that the meat traders can afford to buy decent houses. The other point that they have made is that under a Conservative Administration plenty of houses have been built for meat traders and others to buy. If that is the situation which has been created by the Government, there should be plenty of houses and the butchers should be so well off that each one of them can at least pay a deposit and get a mortgage, take possession of a new house, and close the premises in which he has been living next door to a slaughterhouse.

Surely that is possible if all the claims which have been made by the right hon. Gentleman and his supporters are true. If the right hon. Gentleman admits that it is not possible for butchers to buy houses so that they can get out of the premises which they now occupy next to slaughterhouses, all these claims for house building and social and economic progress are proved to be completely untrue.

I can see no reason why these premises should be maintained and why the housing part of the premises should not be closed so that people may be prevented from living in them. The Minister has not the faintest idea what will be the effect of this legislation. It is assumed that there are lots of small slaughterhouses attached to living accommodation, and because he hates to interfere with conditions like these to which every decent person objects we are asked to approve the Clause as it stands and allow these premises with slaughterhouses attached to them to remain for years.

Unless our Amendments are accepted, the right hon. Gentleman is saying that the house building programme of the Government has not come up to the standards which we have been led to believe, and that the butchers are not sufficiently well off to get out of the bad premises; and the conditions about which we are protesting will have to continue for a long time.

Mr. John Hare

I do not think that the hon. Member for Hillsborough (Mr. Darling) will be surprised when I say that I must refuse these Amendments because I have already refused what is contained in them when discussing the new Clause.

I do not wish to repeat in detail what I have already said, but I can assure the hon. Gentleman that we have produced the new Clause because we do not like the principle of dwelling-houses being attached to slaughterhalls. But we have practical reasons, which I have already mentioned, for limiting this provision to existing slaughterhouses. The House must realise that we are dealing with much greater quantities of meat than were being consumed in 1953 or 1952 or 1951. We are now consuming in this country about 25 per cent. more meat than we were consuming about five years ago. Therefore, extra facilities are needed.

Mr. Darling

Has the right hon. Gentleman any information which will prove that point, the point being that the slaughtering facilities of a kind of which we would all approve are used to the full and that there is no surplus capacity?

Mr. John Hare

My information is that the slaughterhouses which the hon. Gentleman has in mind would not cope with what is needed now in such a way as to give an effective distribution of meat. However, I have my opinion and the hon. Gentleman has his, and we could argue about this until the cows came home. I think that the House understands my reasons. I am sorry that I cannot meet the hon. Gentleman.

Dr. Stross

The right hon. Gentleman has attempted to give reasons why he cannot give way on these Amendments. The reasons that he has given are misplaced and unconvincing. If we accept what he says, that because the consumption of meat is 25 per cent. greater than five years ago this type of slaughterhouse must be allowed to continue, on condition that it will conform to the regulations which we are now discussing, it would still place us at the bottom of the league as compared with progressive countries. His argument will not hold water.

We did not mind when the Parliamentary Secretary adduced arguments of that sort in Standing Committee, because we had a great deal of sympathy with him for the burden which he had to carry, absolutely alone, for a long time. We grew not only to be fond of him, but to respect and admire the way he slid away from difficult positions. But the Minister must not expect such kindness from us. He must not come here with such foolish arguments and expect us to accept them, because we know something about this matter. His arguments are of no use to us, because we know that they are absolutely incorrect.

In Scandinavian countries and other advanced countries, like Holland, and in every discussion held by experts of the World Health Organisation, it is accepted that the proper thing to do is to concentrate the killing of beasts and to move the meat about rather than to move the cattle. In these days there are vans for moving meat in ideal conditions. It is better to move dead meat than to move living animals long distances, in view of the damage which can be done to them and the infection which can arise. It is better than leaving live animals for long periods of time in market places and in their lairages.

With modern, refrigerated meat vans we could get over this difficulty which the right hon. Gentleman has described to us, at very small cost. If, however, we gave way to him without protest it would mean that for probably fifty years Britain would be regarded as one of the backward nations in Europe, and probably in the whole world, from this point of view.

This is an important matter. Connected with this issue are difficulties of inspection when we have a multiplicity of small slaughterhouses, and the Minister is perpetuating in principle this state of affairs when he asks us to withdraw our Amendment. We say to him that we do not want to do so. I hope that my hon. Friend will ask us to divide the House if the Minister will not give way.

5.0 p.m.

We were told that some of the worst slaughterhouses will not be allowed to stay open, but we do not trust the regulations as being a sufficient safeguard because they do not go far enough. We said again and again during the Committee stage that in this country we are fifty years behind the practice in Scotland. We said—and there were no Scotsmen on the Committee to deny it—that the Scots would not tolerate a Clause of this description for one moment. Scotland is far ahead of us in these matters, as in so many others.

I say again that the Minister must not expect from us the tolerance that we showed towards his Parliamentary Secretary. Kindness and understanding we will give the right hon. Gentleman, but we shall be as blunt as possible today about these matters.

Mr. Hayman

Can my hon. Friend say whether Northern Ireland was excluded from the Bill because conditions there are better or worse than in this country?

Dr. Stross

I regret very much——

Mr. Deputy-Speaker (Sir Charles MacAndrew)

Northern Ireland is not in the Bill and it would be out of order for the hon. Member to discuss it now.

Mr. Winterbottom

When the Minister moved his proposed new Clause, I asked a question and he was good enough to say that my conclusions were right, namely, that partially renovated slaughterhouses attached to dwelling-houses would be allowed to continue indefinitely under the regulations as he envisages them. Now, however, the right hon. Gentleman has said, in reply to our Amendments, that although he agrees with the principle we have been arguing he cannot accept it for existing slaughterhouses, only for new ones. His reason was that, if he did so, there would not be enough slaughterhouses in which to kill the cattle necessary to meet the demand of the people for meat, because there has been an increase of 25 per cent. in meat consumption.

Whoever has given the Minister that brief has forgotten the history of slaughterhouses over the last five years. We argued the difficulties over slaughterhouses in 1955 when there were 600 of them in this country. From a health point of view, they did the work more efficiently than it is being done today, for those 600 dealt with the entire meat consumption of England and Wales. Today, their number has increased to 4200, which is a sixfold increase in slaughterhouses for a 25 per cent. increase in meat consumption. It is idle for the Minister to tell us that he cannot deal with the old, unhygienic, disreputable type of slaughterhouses, and that he will allow them to remain simply on the plea that meat consumption has increased by 25 per cent.

If the Minister told that even to the cattle going into some of the disreputable slaughterhouses they would turn round and kill him, and he would deserve it. Frankly, the Minister has come here without any knowledge of slaughterhouses, hoping to get away with it by his very charming manner. His Joint Parliamentary Secretary did the same during the Committee stage—I give him that gratuitously—but do not let the Minister think that he can get away with statements that have no relation to truth.

The increase in the number of slaughterhouses from 600 to 4,200 during the last few years means that there are far more than are necessary for all the killing required to meet the meat consumption of this country, and yet the Minister says that the worst of them will remain. I believe that somewhere in the history of the Government's attention to slaughterhouses some influence has been brought to bear which is not good for the health of this community, nor is it in the interests of humane and efficient slaughtering. I know that the Minister will reject our Amendments, but I tell him that from the point of view of clean and healthy slaughtering the rejection of our appeal to close existing, disreputable slaughterhouses will always reflect against him to his discredit.

Mr. Willey

We have had a very disappointing reply from the Minister. He paved the way for it by saying in anticipation that his reply would be disappointing, but I did not think he would be as offhand as he has been. The right hon. Gentleman has an agreeable, engaging manner, but it will not do to say that there are practical reasons why the Government cannot agree to the Amendments and then make the mistake of revealing those practical reasons.

Apparently, his practical reasons were that a larger quantity of meat is being distributed than was the case in 1954. In 1954, there were 477 slaughterhouses. Is his argument this, that we are now distributing ten times as much meat as we were then because we now have 4,500 slaughterhouses? The Minister went on to say that our Amendments might interfere with effective meat distribution. Under Tory freedom, must we have ten times the manpower engaged on distribution than we had previously? If that is the fact, this is one of the reasons why we are facing such high prices for meat in the shops. It is a remarkable revelation to be made by a Tory Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, that apparently we must take out of our strained manpower now ten times as many people to distribute meat as previously.

Mr. John Hare indicated dissent.

Mr. Wiley

The Minister shakes his head, but that is the argument he has used. I can understand the right hon. Gentleman being embarrassed. If we pursue the argument a little further, perhaps we shall see where Tory freedom will take us. Previously, we had 12,000 slaughterhouses but the point we are engaged upon is this: whether, in their search for Tory freedom, the Tories threw over all sense of public decency and propriety? Because no one in this House would deny that the majority of the 12,000 slaughterhouses in operation before the war were a disgrace. Fortunately, they are not all open now, but 4,500 are open and we do not know, and the Minister is too coy to tell us, how many of them are attached to dwelling-houses.

There is one person in this country who knows, and that is the right hon. Gentleman. He knows because he licensed those slaughterhouses. It is true that under this Bill he is repealing Section 64 of the principal Act. What does that Section provide? It provides that a slaughterhouse licence shall not be granted except with the consent of the Minister. Have we been having a state of affairs in which the Minister has given his consent without thinking it proper to inquire whether the slaughterhouse is a part of a dwelling-house? Does he know?

Mr. Winterbottom

He does not know.

Mr. Willey

There has either been a disgraceful lack of public responsibility in administering this provision or, alternatively, the Minister is concealing from the House facts which ought to be put before it.

This is a very serious charge to make. Why? Because the Minister's case is that he and his predecessor, Viscount Tenby, opened so many slaughterhouses forming part of dwelling-houses that it would now affect the distribution of meat if those slaughterhouses were to be closed. What a disgraceful state of affairs to be in? Is this Tory freedom? Slaughtering animals in the back room or in the basement of a house—is that Tory freedom?

Surely the right hon. Gentleman, however agreeable and pleasant he may be, cannot expect us to accept an explanation of that sort, because, as I say, he happens to be the one person who knows. If he does not know, then it is obvious that there has been disgraceful maladministration by Viscount Tenby and even by the Chancellor himself. After all, we were in Committee for a considerable time, and this is information which ought to be available now. I hope that the right hon. Gentleman will add a little realism to our discussions and say that he will accept the Amendment. If he cannot accept it in its present form, let him set a term and say that within eighteen months all these slaughterhouses will be closed.

I am sure that even hon. Gentlemen opposite—they are obviously looking very discomfited—would not like to take a decision that slaughterhouses forming part of dwelling-houses shall remain in operation. I am sure that everyone feels that that is an affront to public decency. Not only that, it is a threat to public hygiene. We have been discussing the Bill since November, but so doctrinaire are the present Government that they are afraid to get up and say, "We are not any longer going to have slaughterhouses in people's dwelling-houses." If the Government are not prepared to say that, they will be stigmatised.

5.15 p.m.

We know into what difficulties the present Government got when they discussed the Food and Drugs Bill and the difficulty we had then of persuading the Government to accept provisions to ensure safety in public hygiene. But this is more than ensuring decent conditions of public hygiene. This is a question of standards of living. It is absolutely disgraceful that in 1958 this country cannot say that we are not going to have slaughterhouses in private dwellings. Unless we can get a more satisfactory reply from the right hon. Gentleman, we shall have no alternative but to vote for the Amendment.

Mr. John Hare

The hon. Member for Sunderland, North (Mr. Willey) is, of course, a most eloquent speaker. Indeed, he is so eloquent that he himself almost believes the things he says. He works himself up to a great pitch of enthusiasm. I am sure that the hon. Gentleman is not ignorant—it would be very unfair to accuse him of being ignorant—and that he knows perfectly well that the Minister of Food does not license slaughterhouses which were opened before the war and which were allowed to be reopened by my predecessor. He knows that I am only responsible for licensing new slaughterhouses.

The other point made by the hon. Gentleman was that because there were 400-odd slaughterhouses and now there are about 4,000 slaughterhouses, that automatically means that there are ten times more people engaged in the distribution of meat. He knows perfectly well that the slaughterhouses then were the large slaughterhouses and that those which have been added since are smaller ones. Therefore, to use the argument that because there are now ten times more slaughterhouses there are automatically ten times more people engaged in distribution is not true.

What I said was that because, fortunately, there is a larger amount of meat to be consumed in the country today we require extra resources to see that it is

efficiently distributed. I had to correct the hon. Gentleman about the things he said, and I am sorry that, despite his eloquence, I cannot accept the Amendment.

Mr. Willey

The Minister has been very careful not to say whether or not this information is available in his Department.

Sir Peter Roberts (Sheffield, Heeley)

This is the Report stage.

Mr. Willey

Yes, this is Report stage, but the Minister spoke three times. This happens to be my Amendment. If the hon. Gentleman has any objection to make, he should make it against his own side.

The right hon. Gentleman has not answered the question. That was the charge made against him. It was quite clear when we discussed the 1954 Bill that the Ministry would retain control of slaughterhouses. That was the basis of the Bill. If the Ministry has not the information, then it ought to have it. The right hon. Gentleman has been careful not to deny that his Department has the information.

Question put, That the words proposed to be left out stand part of the proposed Clause:—

The House divided: Ayes 249, Noes 215.

Division No. 89.] AYES [[...]19 p.m.
Aitken, W. T. Browne, J. Nixon (Craigton) Erroll, F. J.
Allan, R. A. (Paddington, S.) Bryan, P. Farey-Jones, F. W.
Alport, C. J. M. Bullus, Wing Commander E. E. Finlay, Graeme
Amory, Rt. Hn. Heathcoat (Tiverton) Butcher, Sir Herbert Fisher, Nigel
Arbuthnot, John Carr, Robert Fletcher-Cooke, C.
Armstrong, C. W. Cary, Sir Robert Fort, R.
Ashton, H. Channon, Sir Henry Foster, John
Atkins, H. E. Clarke, Brig. Terence (Portsmth, W.) Galbraith, Hon. T. G. D.
Baldwin, A. E. Cooke, Robert Gammans, Lady
Balniel, Lord Cooper-Key, E. M. Garner-Evans, E. H.
Barber, Anthony Cordeaux, Lt.-Col. J. K. George, J. C. (Pollok)
Barter, John Corfield, Capt. F. V. Glover, D.
Baxter, Sir Beverley Craddock, Beresford (Spelthorne)
Beamish, Col. Tufton Crosthwaite-Eyre, Col. O. E. Glyn, Col. Richard H.
Bell, Philip (Bolton, E.) Crowder, Sir John (Finchley) Godber, J. B.
Bell, Ronald (Bucks, S.) Cunningham, Knox Goodhart, Philip
Bennett, F. M. (Torquay) Currie, G. B. H. Gough, C. F. H.
Bennett, Dr. Reginald Dance, J. C. G. Gower, H. R.
Bidgood, J. C. Davidson, Viscountess Graham, Sir Fergus
Bingham, R. M. D'Avigdor-Goldsmid, Sir Henry Grant, w. (Woodside)
Bishop, F. P. Deedes, W. F. Grant-Ferris, Wg. Cdr. R.(NantWich)
Black, C. W. Digby, Simon Wingfield Green, A.
Body, R. F. Dodds-Parker, A. D. Grimond, J.
Bonham-Carter, Capt. M. R. Doughty, C. J. A. Grimston, Hon. John (St. Albans)
Bossom, Sir Alfred du Cann, E. D. L. Grimston, Sir Robert (Westbury)
Bowen, E. R. (Cardigan) Dugdale, Rt. Hn. Sir T. (Richmond) Grosvenor, Lt.-Col. R. G.
Boyd-Carpenter Rt. Hon. J. A. Duncan, Sir James Gurden, Harold
Boyle, Sir Edward Eden, J. B. (Bournemouth, West) Hare, Rt. Hon. J. H.
Braine, B. R. Elliott,R.W.(Ne'castle upon Tyne,N.) Harris, Frederic (Croydon, N.W.)
Braithwaite, Sir Albert (Harrow, W.) Emmet, Hon. Mrs. Evelyn Harris, Reader (Heston)
Brooman-White R. C. Errington, Sir Eric Harrison, A. B, C. (Maldon)
Harrison, Col. J. H. (Eye) Linstead, Sir H. N. Rawlinson, Peter
Harvey, Sir Arthur Vere (Macclesf'd) Lloyd, Maj. Sir Guy (Renfrew, E.) Redmayne, M.
Harvey, Ian (Harrow, E.) Lloyd, Rt. Hon. Selwyn (Wirral) Remnant, Hon. P.
Harvey, John (Walthamstow, E.) Longden, Gilbert Renton, D. L. M.
Hay, John Low, Rt. Hon. Sir Toby Ridsdala, J. E.
Heald, Rt. Hon. Sir Lionel Lucas, P. B. (Brentford & Chiswick) Rippon, A. G. F.
Heath, Rt. Hon. E. R. G. Lucas-Tooth, Sir Hugh Roberts, Sir Peter (Heeley)
Henderson, John (Cathcart) McAdden, S. J. Robertson, Sir David
Henderson-Stewart, Sir James Macdonald, Sir Peter Robinson, Sir Roland (Blackpool, S.)
Hicks-Beach, Maj. W. W. McKibbin, Alan Russell, R. S.
Hill, Rt. Hon. Charles (Luton) Mackie, J. H. (Galloway) Sharples, R. C.
Hill, Mrs. E. (Wythenshawe) McLaughlin, Mrs. P. Simon, J. E. S. (Middlesbrough, W.)
Hirst, Geoffrey Maclay, Rt. Hon. John Spearman, Sir Alexander
Holland-Martin, C. J. Maclean, Sir Fitzroy (Lancaster) Speir, R. M.
Holt, A. F. McLean, Neil (Inverness) Stanley, Capt. Hon. Richard
Hornby, R. P. MacLeod, John (Ross & Cromarty) Stevens, Geoffrey
Horobin, Sir Ian Macmillan, Maurice (Halifax) Steward, Harold (Stockport, S.)
Horsbrugh, Rt. Hon. Dame Florence Macpherson, Niall (Dumfries) Steward, Sir William (Woolwich, W.)
Howard, Gerald (Cambridgeshire) Maddan, Martin Stoddart-Scott, Col. Sir Malcolm
Howard, Hon. Greville (St. Ives) Maitland, Cdr. J. F. W. (Horncastle) Storey, S.
Howard, John (Test) Marlowe, A. A. H. Stuart, Rt. Hon. James (Moray)
Hughes Hallett, Vice-Admiral J. Marples, Rt. Hon. A. E. Studholme, Sir Henry
Hughes-Young, M. H. C. Marshall, Douglas Summers, Sir Spencer
Hurd, A. R. Mathew, R. Taylor, William (Bradford, N.)
Hutchison, Michael Clark(E'b'gh, S.) Maudling, Rt. Hon. R. Teeling, W.
Hutchison, Sir Ian Clark (E'b'gh.W.) Mawby, R. L. Temple, John M.
Hutchison, Sir James (Scotstoun) Maydon, Lt.-Comdr. S. L. C. Thomas, P. J. M. (Conway)
Hyde, Montgomery Milligan, Rt. Hon. W. R.
Hylton-Foster, Rt. Hon. Sir Harry Morrison, John (Salisbury) Thompson, Kenneth (Walton)
Iremonger, T. L. Mott-Radclyffe, Sir Charles Thompson, R. (Croydon, S.)
Jenkins, Robert (Dulwich) Nabarro, G. D. N. Thorneycroft, Rt. Hon. P.
Jennings, Sir Roland (Hallam) Nairn, D. L. S. Thornton-Kemsley, Sir Colin
Johnson, Dr. Ronald (Carlisle) Nicholls, Harmar Tiley, A. (Bradford, W.)
Johnson, Eric (Blackley) Nicholson, Sir Godfrey (Farnham) Tilney, John (Wavertree)
Jones, Rt. Hon. Aubrey(Hall Green) Nicolson,N. (B'n'm'th, E. & Chr'ch) Turton, Rt. Hon. R. H.
Joseph, Sir Keith Nugent, G. R. H. Vane, W. M. F.
Joynson-Hicks, Hon. Sir Lancelot Oakshott, H. D. Vaughan-Morgan, J. K.
Kaberry, D. O'Neill, Hn. Phelim (Co. Antrim, N.) Vickers, Miss Joan
Keegan, D. Wade, D. W.
Kerby, Capt. H. B. Orr, Capt. L. P. S. Wakefield, Edward (Derbyshire, W.)
Kerr, Sir Hamilton Orr-Ewing, Charles Ian (Hendon, N.) Wakefield, Sir Wavell (St.M'lebone)
Kershaw, J. A. Osborne, C. Wall, Patrick
Kimball, M. Page, R. G. Ward, Rt. Hon. G. R. (Worcester)
Kirk, P. M. Pannell, N. A. (Kirkdale) Ward, Dame Irene (Tynemouth)
Lagden, G. W. Partridge, E. Webbe, Sir H.
Lambton, Viscount Peel, W. J. Whitelaw, W. S. I.
Lancaster, Col. C. G. Peyton, J. W. W. Williams, Paul (Sunderland, S.)
Leather, E. H. C. Pike, Miss Mervyn Wills, G. (Bridgwater)
Leavey, J. A. Pilkington, Capt. R. A. Wilson, Geoffrey (Truro)
Leburn, W. G. Pitman, I. J. Woollam, John Victor
Legge-Bourke, Maj. E. A. H. Pitt, Miss E. M. Yates, William (The Wrekin)
Legh, Hon. Peter (Petersfield) Powell, J. Enoch
Lindsay, Hon. James (Devon, N.) Price, David (Eastleigh) TELLERS FOR THE AYES:
Lindsay, Martin (Solihull) Ramsden, J. E. Mr. Gibson-Watt and
Mr. Chichester-Clark.
Ainsley, J. W. Carmichael, J. Edwards, W. J. (Stepney)
Albu, A. H. Castle, Mrs. B. A. Evans, Albert (Islington, S.W.)
Allaun, Frank (Salford, E.) Champion, A. J. Evans, Edward (Lowestoft)
Allen, Arthur (Bosworth) Chapman, W. D. Fernyhough, E.
Allen, Scholefield (Crewe) Chetwynd, G. R. Finch, H. J.
Awbery, S. S. Clunie, J. Foot, D. M.
Baird, J. Coldrick, W. Forman, J. C.
Balfour, A. Collins, V. J.(Shoreditch & Finsbury) Fraser, Thomas (Hamilton)
Bence, C. R. (Dunbartonshire, E.) Cove, W. G. Gaitskell, Rt. Hon. H. T. N.
Benn, Hn. Wedgwood (Bristol, S.E.) Craddock, George (Bradford, S.)
Benson, Sir George Cronin, J. D. Gordon Walker, Rt. Hon. P. C.
Beewick, Frank Crossman, R. H. S. Grenfell, Rt. Hon. D. R.
Bevan, Rt. Hon. A. (Ebbw Vale) Cullen, Mrs. A. Grey, C. F.
Blackburn, F. Dalton, Rt. Hon. H. Griffiths, David (Rother Valley)
Boardman, H. Darling, George (Hillsborough) Griffiths, Rt. Hon. James (Llanelly)
Bottomley, Rt. Hon. A. G. Davies, Ernest (Enfield, E.) Hale, Leslie
Bowden, H. W. (Leicester, S.W.) Davies, Harold (Leek) Hall, Rt. Hn. Glenvil (Colne Valley)
Bowles, F. G. Davies, Stephen (Merthyr) Hamilton, W. W.
Boyd, T. C. Deer, G. Hannan, W.
Braddock, Mrs. Elizabeth de Freitas, Geoffrey Harrison, J. (Nottingham, N.)
Brock way, A. F. Delargy, H. J. Hastings, S.
Broughton, Dr. A. D. D. Diamond, John Hayman, F. H.
Brown, Thomas (Ince) Donnelly, D. L. Henderson, Rt. Hn. A. (Rwly Regis)
Burke, W. A. Dye, S. Herblson, Miss M.
Butler, Herbert (Hackney, C.) Ede, Rt. Hon. J. C. Hewitson, Capt. M.
Butler, Mrs. Joyce (Wood Green) Edwards, Rt. Hon. Ness (Caerphilly) Holman, P.
Callaghan, L. J. Edwards, Robert (Bilston) Holmes, Horace
Howell, Charles (Perry Barr) Mellish, R J. Silverman, Julius (Aston)
Howell, Denis (All Saints) Mitchison, G. R. Silverman, Sydney (Nelson)
Hoy, J. H. Monslow, W. Simmons, C. J. (Brierley Hill)
Hughes, Cledwyn (Anglesey) Moody, A. S. Slater, J. (Sedgefield)
Hughes, Emrys (S. Ayrshire) Morris, Percy (Swansea, W.) Sorensen, R. W.
Hughes, Hector (Aberdeen, N.) Morrison, Rt.Hn.Herbert(Lewis'm,S.) Soskice, Rt. Hon. Sir Frank
Hunter, A. E. Mort, D. L. Sparks, J. A.
Hynd, H. (Accrington) Moss, R. Steele, T.
Hynd, J. B. (Attercliffe) Moyle, A. Stewart, Michael (Fulham)
Irving, Sydney (Dartford) Mulley, F. W. Stones, W. (Consett)
Isaacs, Rt. Hon. G. A. Neal, Harold (Bolsover) Stross,Dr.Barnett(Stoke-on-Trent,C.)
Janner, B. Noel-Baker, Francis (Swindon) Summerskill, Rt. Hon. E.
Jay, Rt. Hon. D. P. T. Oliver, G. H. Swingler, S. T.
Jeger, George (Goole) Oram, A. E. Sylvester, G. O.
Jeger, Mrs. Lena (Holbn&St.Pncs.S.) Orbach, M. Taylor, Bernard (Mansfield)
Johnson, James (Rugby) Oswald, T. Thomas, George (Cardiff)
Jones, David (The Hartlepools) Owen, W. J. Thomas, Iorwerth (Rhondda, W.)
Jones, Jack (Rotherham) Padley, W. E. Thomson, George (Dundee, E.)
Jones, J. Idwal (Wrexham)
Jones, T. W. (Merioneth) Paling, Rt. Hon. W. (Dearne valley) Thornton, E.
Key, Rt. Hon. C. W. Paling, Will T. (Dewsbury) Timmons, J.
King, Dr. H. M. Palmer, A. M. F. Tomney, F.
Lawson, G. M. Pannell, Charles (Leeds, W.) Ungoed-Thomas, Sir Lynn
Ledger, R. J. Parkin, B. T. Usborne, H. C.
Lee, Frederick (Newton) Viant, S. P.
Lee, Miss Jennie (Cannock) Paton, John Watkins, T. E.
Lever, Harold (Cheetham) Pearson, A. Weitzman, D.
Lewis, Arthur Peart, T. F. Wells, Percy (Faversham)
Lindgren, G. S. Pentland, N. Wheeldon, W. E.
Logan, D. G. Popplewell, E. White, Mrs. Eirene (E. Flint)
Mabon, Dr. J. Dickson Prentice, R. E. Willey, Frederick
McAlister, Mrs. Mary Price, J. T. (Westhoughton) Williams, David (Neath)
McCann, J. Price, Philips (Gloucestershire, W.) Williams, Rev. Llywelyn (Ab'tillery)
MacColl, J. E. Probert, A. R. Williams, Rt. Hon. T. (Don Valley)
McGhee, H. G. Proctor, W. T. Williams, W. T. (Barons Court)
McGovern, J. Pryde, D. J. Willis, Eustace (Edinburgh, E.)
McInnes, J. Pursey, Cmdr. H. Wilson, Rt. Hon. Harold (Huyton)
McKay, John (Wallsend) Rankin, John Winterbottom, Richard
McLeavy, Frank Redhead, E. C. Woodburn, Rt. Hon. A.
MacMillan, M. K. (Western Isles) Reeves, J. Woof, R. E.
MacPherson, Malcolm (Stirling) Rhodes, H. Yates, V. (Ladywood)
Mahon, Simon Robens, Rt. Hon. A. Younger, Rt. Hon. K.
Mainwaring, W. H. Roberts, Albert (Normanton) Zilliacus, K.
Mallalieu, E. L. (Brigg) Roberts, Goronwy (Caernarvon)
Mann, Mrs. Jean Robinson, Kenneth (St. Pancras, N.) TELLERS FOR THE NOES:
Marquand, Rt Hon. H. A. Ross, William Mr. John Taylor and Mr. Rogers
Mason, Roy Short, E. W.
Amendment proposed to the proposed Clause, to leave out lines 22 to 25.—[Mr. Willey.]
Question put, That the words proposed to be left out stand part of the proposed Clause:—
The House divided: Ayes 250, Noes 209.
Division No. 90.] AYES [5.29 p.m.
Aitken, W. T. Bowen, E. R. (Cardigan) Deedes, W. F.
Allan, R. A. (Paddington, S.) Boyd-Carpenter, Rt. Hon. J. A. Digby, Simon Wingfield
Alport, C. J. M. Boyle, Sir Edward Dodds-Parker, A. D.
Amory, Rt. Hn. Heathcoat(Tiverton) Braithwaite, Sir Albert (Harrow, W.) Doughty, C. J. A.
Arbuthnot, John Brooman-White, R. C. du Cann, E. D. L.
Armstrong, C. W. Browne, J. Nixon (Craigton) Dugdale, Rt. Hn. Sir T. (Richmond)
Ashton, H. Bryan, P. Duncan, Sir James
Atkins, H. E. Bullus, Wing Commander E. E. Eden, J. B. (Bournemouth, West)
Baldwin, A. E. Burden, F. F. A. Elliott,R.W.(Ne'castle upon Tyne,N.)
Balniel, Lord Butcher, Sir Herbert Emmet, Hon. Mrs. Evelyn
Barber, Anthony Cary, Sir Robert Errington, Sir Eric
Barter, John Channon, Sir Henry Erroll, F. J.
Baxter, Sir Beverley Clarke, Brig. Terence (Portsmth, W.)
Beamish, Col. Tufton Cooke, Robert Farey-Jones, F. W.
Bell, Philip (Bolton, E.) Cooper-Key, E. M. Finlay, Graeme
Bell, Ronald (Bucks, S.) Cordeaux, Lt.-Col. J. K. Fisher, Nigel
Bennett, F. M. (Torquay) Corfield, Capt. F. V. Fletcher-Cooke, C.
Bennett, Dr. Reginald Craddock, Beresford (Spelthorne) Fort, R.
Bevins, J. R. (Toxteth) Crosthwaite-Eyre, Col. O. E. Foster, John
Bidgood, J. C. Crowder, Sir John (Finchley) Galbraith, Hon. T. G. D.
Birch, Rt. Hon. Nigel Cunningham, Knox Gammans, Lady
Bishop, F. P. Currie, G. B. H. Garner-Evans, E. H.
Black, C. W. Dance, J. C. G. George, J. C. (Pollok)
Body, R. F. Davidson, Viscountess Glover, D.
Bossom, Sir Alfred D'Avigdor-Goldsmid, Sir Henry Glyn, Col. Richard H.
Godber, J. B. Kershaw, J. A. Pike, Miss Mervyn
Goodhart, Philip Kimball, M. Pilkington, Capt. R. A.
Gough, C. F. H. Kirk, P. M. Pitman, I. J.
Gower, H. R. Lagden, G. W. Pitt, Miss E. M.
Graham, Sir Fergus Lambton, Viscount Powell, J. Enoch
Grant, W. (Woodside) Lancaster, Col. C. G. Price, David (Eastleigh)
Grant-Ferris, Wg Cdr. R. (Nantwich) Leather, E. H. C. Ramsden, J. E.
Green, A. Leavey, J. A. Rawlinson, Peter
Grimond, J. Leburn, W. G. Redmayne, M.
Grimston, Hon. John (St. Albans) Legge-Bourke, Maj. E. A. H. Remnant, Hon. P.
Grimston, Sir Robert (Westbury) Legh, Hon. Peter (Petersfield) Renton, D. L. M.
Grosvenor, Lt.-Col. R. G. Lindsay, Hon. James (Devon, N.) Ridsdale, J. E.
Gurden, Harold Lindsay, Martin (Solihull) Rippon, A. G. F.
Hare, Rt. Hon. J. H. Linstead, Sir H. N. Roberts, Sir Peter (Heeley)
Harris, Frederic (Croydon, N.W.) Lloyd, Maj. Sir Guy (Renfrew, E.) Robertson, Sir David
Harris, Reader (Heston) Lloyd, Rt. Hon. Selwyn (Wirral) Robinson, Sir Roland (Blackpool, S.)
Harrison, A. B. C. (Maldon) Longden, Gilbert Russell, R. S.
Harrison, Col. J. H. (Eye) Low, Rt. Hon. Sir Toby Sharples, R. C.
Harvey, Sir Arthur Vere (Macclesf'd) Lucas, P. B. (Brentford & Chiswick) Simon, J. E. S. (Middlesbrough, W.)
Harvey, Ian (Harrow, E.) Lucas-Tooth, Sir Hugh Spearman, Sir Alexander
Harvey, John (Walthamstow, E.) McAdden, S. J. Speir, R. M.
Macdonald, Sir Peter Stanley, Capt. Hon. Richard
Hay, John McKibbin, Alan Stevens, Geoffrey
Head, Rt. Hon. A. H. Mackie, J. H. (Galloway) Steward, Harold (Stockport, S.)
Heald, Rt. Hon. Sir Lionel McLaughlin, Mrs. P. Steward, Sir William (Woolwich, W.)
Heath, Rt. Hon. E. R. G. Maclay, Rt. Hon. John Stoddart-Scott, Col. Sir Malcolm
Henderson, John (Cathcart) Maclean, Sir Fitzroy (Lancaster) Storey, S.
Henderson-Stewart, Sir James McLean, Neil (Inverness) Stuart, Rt. Hon. James (Moray)
Hicks-Beach, Maj. W. W. MacLeod, John (Ross & Cromarty) Studholme, Sir Henry
Hill, Rt. Hon. Charles (Luton) Macmillan, Maurice (Halifax) Summers, Sir Spencer
Hill, Mrs. E. (Wythenshawe) Macpherson, Niall (Dumfries) Taylor, William (Bradford, N.)
Hirst, Geoffrey Maddan, Martin Teeling, W.
Holland-Martin, C. J. Maitland, Cdr. J. F. W. (Horncastle) Temple, John M.
Holt, A. F. Marlowe, A. A. H. Thomas, P. J. M. (Conway)
Hornby, R. P. Marples, Rt. Hon. A. E. Thompson, Kenneth (Walton)
Horobin, Sir Ian Marshall, Douglas Thompson, R. (Croydon, S.)
Horsbrugh, Rt. Hon. Dame Florence Mathew, R. Thorneycroft, Rt. Hon. P.
Howard, Gerald (Cambridgeshire) Maudling, Rt. Hon. R. Thornton-Kemsley, Sir Colin
Howard, Hon. Greville (St. Ives) Mawby, R. L. Tiley, A. (Bradford, W.)
Howard, John (Test) Maydon, Lt.-Comdr, S. L. C. Tilney, John (Wavertree)
Hughes Hallett, Vice-Admiral J. Milligan, Rt. Hon. W. R. Turton, Rt. Hon. R. H.
Hughes-Young, M. H. C. Molson, Rt. Hon. Hugh Vane, W. M. F.
Hurd, A. R. Morrison, John (Salisbury) Vaughan-Morgan, J. K.
Hutchison, Michael Clark(E'b'gh, S.) Mott-Radclyffe, Sir Charles Vickers, Miss Joan
Hutchison, Sir Ian Clark (E'b'gh, W.) Nabarro, G. D. N. Wade, D. W.
Hutchison, Sir James (Scotstoun) Nairn, D. L. S. Wakefield, Edward (Derbyshire, W.)
Hyde, Montgomery Nicholls, Harmar Wakefield, Sir Wavell (St. M'lebone)
Hylton-Foster, Rt. Hon. Sir Harry Nicholson, Sir Godfrey (Farnham) Wall, Patrick
Iremonger, T. L. Nicolson, N. (B'n'm'th, E. & Chr'ch) Ward, Rt. Hon. G. R. (Worcester)
Jenkins, Robert (Dulwich) Nugent, G. R. H. Ward, Dame Irene (Tynemouth)
Jennings, Sir Roland (Hallam) Oakshott, H. D. Webbe, Sir H.
Johnson, Dr. Donald (Carlisle) O'Neill, Hn.Phelim (Co. Antrim, N.) Whitelaw, W. S. I.
Johnson, Eric (Blackley) Orr, Capt. L. P. S. Williams, Paul (Sunderland, S.)
Jones, Rt. Hon. Aubrey (Hall Green) Orr-Ewing, Charles Ian (Hendon, N.) Wills, G. (Bridgwater)
Joseph, Sir Keith Osborne, C. Wilson, Geoffrey (Truro)
Joynson-Hicks, Hon. Sir Lancelot Page, R. G. Woollam, John Victor
Kaberry, D. Pannell, N. A. (Kirkdale) Yates, William (The Wrekin)
Keegan, D. Partridge, E.
Kerby, Capt. H. B. Peel, W. J. TELLERS FOR THE AYES:
Kerr, Sir Hamilton Peyton, J. W. W. Mr. Gibson-Wart and
Mr. Chichester-Clark.
Ainsley, J. W. Brown, Thomas (Ince) Davies, Stephen (Merthyr)
Albu, A. H. Burke, W. A. Deer, G.
Allaun, Frank (Salford, E.) Butler, Herbert (Hackney, C.) de Freitas, Geoffrey
Allen, Arthur (Bosworth) Butler, Mrs. Joyce (Wood Green) Delargy, H. J.
Allen, Scholefield (Crewe) Callaghan, L. J, Diamond, John
Awbery, S. S. Carmichael, J. Donnelly, D. L.
Balfour, A. Castle, Mrs. B. A. Dye, S.
Bence, C. R. (Dunbartonshire, E.) Champion, A. J. Ede, Rt. Hon. J. C.
Benn, Hn. Wedgwood (Bristol, S.E.) Chapman, W. D.
Benson, Sir George Chetwynd, G. R. Edwards, Rt. Hon. Ness (Caerphilly)
Beswick, Frank Clunie, J. Edwards, Robert (Bilston)
Bevan, Rt. Hon. A. (Ebbw Vale) Coldrick, W. Edwards, W. J. (Stepney)
Blackburn, F. Collins,V.J.(Shoreditch & Finsbury) Evans, Albert (Islington, S.W.)
Boardman, H. Cove, W. G. Evans, Edward (Lowestoft)
Bottomley, Rt. Hon. A. G. Craddock, George (Bradford, S.) Fernyhough, E.
Bowden H. W. (Leicester, S.W.) Cronin, J. D. Finch, H. J.
Bowles, F. G. Crossman, R. H. S. Foot, D. M.
Boyd, T. C. Cullen, Mrs. A. Forman, J. C.
Braddock, Mrs. Elizabeth Dalton, Rt. Hon. H. Fraser, Thomas (Hamilton)
Brockway, A. F. Darling, George (Hillsborough) Gaitskell, Rt. Hon. H. T. N.
Broughton, Dr. A. D. D. Davies, Ernest (Enfield, E.) Gordon Walker, Rt. Hon. P. C.
Grenfell, Rt. Hon. D. R. McGovern, J. Rhodes, H.
Grey, C. F. McInnes, J. Robens, Rt. Hon. A.
Griffiths, David (Rother Valley) McKay, John (Wallsend) Roberts, Goronwy (Caernarvon)
Griffiths, Rt. Hon. James (Llanelly) McLeavy, Frank Robinson, Kenneth (St. Pancras, N.)
Hale, Leslie MacMillan, M. K. (Western Isles) Ross, William
Hall, Rt. Hn. Glenvil (Colne Valley) MacPherson, Malcolm (Stirling) Short, E. W.
Hamilton, W. W. Mahon, Simon Silverman, Sydney (Nelson)
Hannan, W. Mainwaring, W. H. Simmons, C. J. (Brierley Hill)
Harrison, J. (Nottingham, N.) Mallalieu, E. L. (Brigg) Slater, Mrs. H. (Stoke, N.)
Hastings, S. Mann, Mrs. Jean Sorensen, R. W.
Hayman, F. H. Marquand, Rt. Hon. H. A. Soskice, Rt. Hon. Sir Frank
Henderson, Rt. Hn. A. (Rwly Regis) Mason, Roy Sparks, J. A.
Hewitson, Capt. M. Mellish, R. J. Steele, T.
Holman, P. Mitchison, G. R. Stewart, Michael (Fulham)
Holmes, Horace Monslow, W. Stones, W. (Consett)
Howell, Charles (Perry Barr) Moody, A. S. Stross,Dr.Barnett(Stoke-on-Trent,C.)
Howell, Denis (All Saints) Morris, Percy (Swansea, W.) Summerskill, Rt. Hon. E.
Hoy, J. H. Morrison,Rt.Hn.Herbert(Lewis'm,S.) Swingler, S. T.
Hughes, Cledwyn (Anglesey) Mort, D. L. Sylvester, G. O.
Hughes, Emrys (S. Ayrshire) Moss, R. Taylor, Bernard (Mansfield)
Hughes, Hector (Aberdeen, N.) Moyle, A. Thomas, George (Cardiff)
Hunter, A. E. Mulley, F. W. Thomas, Iorwerth (Rhondda, W.)
Hynd, H. (Accrington) Neal, Harold (Bolsover) Thomson, George (Dundee, E.)
Hynd, J. B. (Attercliffe) Noel-Baker, Francis (Swindon) Thornton, E.
Irving, Sydney (Dartford) Oliver, G. H. Timmons, J.
Isaacs, Rt. Hon. G. A. Oram, A. E. Tomney, F.
Janner, B. Orbach, M. Ungoed-Thomas, Sir Lynn
Jay, Rt. Hon. D. P. T. Oswald, T.
Jeger, George (Goole) Owen, W. J. Usborne, H. C.
Jeger, Mrs. Lena(Holbn & St.Pncs,S.) Padley, W. E. Viant, S. P.
Johnson, James (Rugby) Paling, Rt. Hon. W. (Dearne Valley) Watkins, T. E.
Jones, David (The Hartlepools) Paling, Will T. (Dewsbury) Weitzman, D.
Jones, Jack (Rotherham) Palmer, A. M. F. Wells, Percy (Faversham)
Jones, J. Idwal (Wrexham) Pannell, Charles (Leeds, W.) Wheeldon, W. E.
Jones, T. W. (Merioneth) Parkin, B. T. White, Mrs. Eirene (E. Flint)
Key, Rt. Hon. C. W. Paton, John Willey, Frederick
King, Dr. H. M. Pearson, A. Williams, David (Neath)
Lawson, G. M. Peart, T. F. Williams, Rev. Llywelyn (Ab'tillery)
Ledger, R. J. Pentland, N. Williams, Rt. Hon. T. (Don Valley)
Lee, Frederick (Newton) Popplewell, E. Williams, W. T. (Barons Court)
Lee, Miss Jennie (Cannock) Prentice, R. E. Willis, Eustace (Edinburgh, E.)
Lever, Harold (Cheetham) Price, J. T. (Westhoughton) Wilson, Rt. Hon. Harold (Huyton)
Lewis, Arthur Price, Philips (Gloucestershire, W.) Winterbottom, Richard
Lindgren, G. S. Probert, A. R. Woodburn, Rt. Hon. A.
Logan, D. G. Proctor, W. T. Woof, R. E.
Mabon, Dr. J. Dickson Pryde, D. J. Yates, V. (Ladywood)
McAlister, Mrs. Mary Pursey, Cmdr. H. Younger, Rt. Hon. K.
McCann, J. Rankin, John Zilliacus, K.
MacColl, J. E. Redhead, E. C.
McGhee, H. G. Reeves, J. TELLERS FOR THE NOES:
Mr. John Taylor and Mr. Rogers.

Clause added to the Bill.

Mr. Deputy-Speaker (Sir Charles MacAndrew)

The remainder of the new Clauses are either out of order or are not selected.

Mr. Darling

On a point of order. I understand, Mr. Deputy-Speaker, that you are not calling the next new Clause—(Stunning pens.). I do not, of course, want to challenge your Ruling, but in Committee, when we discussed the matter, the Parliamentary Secretary told us that consultations were taking place. My information is that the hon. Gentleman has rather misled us, and I think it would be wrong if the record in the Committee reports stood without some correction being made now about those consultations.

Mr. Deputy-Speaker

The hon. Member may be keen to have it recalled, but the new Clause is not selected.

Mr. Winterbottom

May I call your attention, Mr. Deputy-Speaker, to the new Clause which deals with Sunday slaughtering? Having in mind the importance of the Clause and the fact that under Sunday slaughtering there are many malpractices and, in some cases, things that can only be described as jiggery pokery in the trade, may I ask whether the Clause cannot be discussed?

Mr. Deputy-Speaker

To which new Clause is the hon. Member referring?

Mr. Winterbottom

The last one, entitled "Prohibition of slaughtering on Sundays."

Mr. Deputy-Speaker

It is not selected.

Mr. Winterbottom

Further to that point of order. I shall be very glad, Mr. Deputy-Speaker, if it is possible for you to let us have the reasons why the Clause has not been selected, in view of its importance.

Mr. Deputy-Speaker

If the hon. Member comes to see me privately I will tell him, but I cannot tell him now.