HC Deb 25 October 1962 vol 664 cc1064-8

Message to attend the Lords Commissioners;

Hon. Members: No. Shame.

Mr. A. Fenner Brockway (Eton and Slough)

On a point of order—

Mr. John Rankin (Glasgow, Govan)

To hell with the Lords.

Mr. Brockway

On a point of order—

The House went:—and, having returned—

Mr. Anthony Greenwood (Rossendale)

On a point of order. May I draw your attention, Mr. Speaker, to the fact that there has been a serious interruption of discussion by the House of a grave matter of world importance? The point I want to raise is whether it is possible to make provision in future so that there shall be no interruption by a messenger from another place of discussion in the House of Commons.

Mr. Speaker

I have to acquaint the House that the House has been to the House of Peers, where a Commission under the Great Seal was read. The Lord High Chancellor, being one of the Royal Commissioners, delivered Her Majesty's Most Gracious Speech to both Houses of Parliament, in pursuance of Her Majesty's Commands, as follows:

My Lords and Members of the House of Commons:

My Husband and I were touched by the memorable welcome given to us during our visit to Ghana, Sierra Leone and the Gambia. We also had great pleasure in visiting Liberia and later in welcoming the President of Liberia and Mrs. Tubman on a State Visit to this country.

I was very glad to welcome the King of Norway as My guest in Edinburgh last week. This was the first State Visit to be held in Scotland since the Union of the Crowns in 1603.

The bonds of friendship between My People and those of other countries have been strengthened through visits which have been paid by My Husband and by members of My Family.

My Government have continued their active support for the United Nations and its Agencies, and have worked to achieve the purposes to which the United Nations Charter gives expression. At the Conference in Geneva they have supported proposals for general and complete disarmament and jointly with the Government of the United States have brought forward proposals for the banning of tests of nuclear weapons. Unfortunately, owing to the attitude adopted by the Soviet Union and its allies, agreement has not yet been reached on either of those issues.

My Government have continued to play a full part in the international organisations to which the United Kingdom belongs. The North Atlantic Alliance and other regional associations for defence have remained an integral part of My Government's defence policy.

My Government played a leading part in the negotiations on the Laotian question at the Geneva Conference in July. These resulted in the signature of an agreement to end the civil war in Laos and to provide international undertakings to respect the neutrality of that country. I extend to the Kingdom of Laos My good wishes for its future peace and prosperity.

My Government are in close consultation with the United States and My other allies about the dangerous situation created by the supply of offensive weapons to Cuba.

My Government have continued negotiations with a view to joining the European Economic Community if satisfactory arrangements can be made to meet the special needs of the United Kingdom, of other Commonwealth countries and of the European Free Trade Association. My Government have also initiated negotiations for membership of the European Coal and Steel Community and Euratom.

My Government have signed two Conventions establishing organisations which will enable this country to co-operate with other European countries in space projects.

During the present Session Tanganyika, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago and Uganda have become independent members of the Commonwealth. I extend My warmest good wishes to these countries.

I was pleased to welcome in London last month the Heads of Government of all member countries of the Commonwealth, or their representatives.

The Federation of the West Indies has been dissolved and plans have been made for preserving common services previously administered by the Federal Government.

I welcomed the holding of the second Commonwealth Education Conference in New Delhi in January. I believe that co-operation in education will help to strengthen the links between the countries of the Commonwealth.

My Government and the Government of the Federation of Malaya have reached a decision in principle that a Federation of Malaysia should be brought into being by 31st August, 1963.

My Government have continued to give financial help to the overseas territories for which they are responsible. An Act has been passed to raise the limit on the aggregate amount of loans from the International Bank to the Colonial Territories which may be guaranteed by My Treasury.

My Armed Forces have continued to play their part in the maintenance of peace and stability in the world. An Emergency Reserve has been created in My Territorial Army in which volunteers may be called out for service with the Regular Army for short periods. I pay tribute to the millions of men who since 1939 have been called upon to serve under the National Service Acts.

Members of the House of Commons:

I thank you for the provision which you have made for the public services.

My Lords and Members of the House of Commons:

My Government have set up the National Economic Development Council to consider ways of improving economic efficiency and promoting more rapid growth and have sought to keep the rise of incomes within the rate of increase of national production.

The strength of sterling has been maintained, and the substantial drawing obtained from the International Monetary Fund in 1961 has been repaid in full.

My Ministers have taken important steps to enrich the nation's cultural life especially by setting in train the establishment of a National Theatre.

My Government have continued their support for agriculture. Legislation has been passed providing further financial assistance for the fishing industry and additional powers for the regulation of sea fisheries, including salmon fishing.

An Act has been passed reducing the number of school-leaving dates and introducing more liberal arrangements for grants to full-time students in universities and elsewhere.

Legislation has been passed establishing Councils for the training of health visitors and for training in social work.

My Ministers have announced their intention of carrying through comprehensive plans for the development of our hospitals.

Powers have been taken to exercise control over the rate of immigration to the United Kingdom of Commonwealth citizens from other parts of the Commonwealth.

Measures have been enacted to improve the administration of criminal justice in England and Wales and to amend the law relating to the administration of justice in Northern Ireland and the legislative powers of the Parliament of Northern Ireland.

My Government have continued to give their attention to the housing conditions of My People and are increasing their efforts to clear the slums.

Alterations and improvements have been made in the schemes for family allowances, national insurance and industrial injuries. The scales of national assistance have been increased, and the provision for supplementing workmen's compensation has been improved.

An Act has been passed to ensure the orderly development of industrial pipelines.

Legislation has been passed providing for a better distribution of housing subsidies in Scotland and amending in other respects the law relating to housing in that country. The liquor licensing law in Scotland has been amended.

Acts have been passed to provide for the reorganisation of the nationalised transport undertakings and to make further provision for safety on the roads.

My Lords and Members of the House of Commons:

I pray that the blessing of Almighty God may attend you.

Then a Commission for proroguing the Parliament was read; after which the Lord Chancellor said: My Lords and Members of the House of Commons: By virtue of Her Majesty's Commission under the Great Seal, to us and other Lords directed, and now read, we do, in Her Majesty's Name and in obedience to Her Majesty's Commands, prorogue this Parliament to Tuesday, the thirtieth day of October, one thousand nine hundred and sixty-two, to be then here holden; and this Parliament is accordingly prorogued until Tuesday, the thirtieth day of October, one thousand nine hundred and sixty-two.

End of the Third Session (opened 31st October, 1961) of the Forty-second Parliament of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, in the Eleventh Yew of the Reign of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth the Second.