HC Deb 10 November 1964 vol 701 cc807-8
1. Mr. Frank Allaun

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will set up a press cuttings library, covering all the foreign and domestic issues likely to be discussed in the House of Commons, to be made available to all Members of Parliament.

The Chief Secretary to the Treasury (Mr. John Diamond)

The provision of a press cuttings library is a matter for the House authorities in the first place.

Sir B. Craddock

On a point of order. May I respectfully ask for your guidance, Mr. Speaker, with regard to Question No. 1? As I understand it, Sir, the responsibility for the Library is still yours. Therefore, is this Question properly addressed at this juncture to the right hon. Gentleman the Chancellor of the Exchequer?

Mr. Speaker

On the face of it, the Question does not ask about the House of Commons Library, which comes under my jurisdiction. That is the distinction, I think.

Sir B. Craddock

May I respectfully remind you that this matter has been considered by the Library Committee and that recommendations have been made to you, particularly last Session. Surely, with great respect, the question of a cuttings library, which is really part of the Library facilities of this House, should be governed by you?

Mr. Speaker

No. With great respect, the points are different. I know quite well what the Library Committee has been discussing about a press cuttings library. The point is that this Question does not relate to the House of Commons Library.

Mr. Allaun

Will the Minister bear in mind that this service would help hon. Members to do their work far more effectively, and will he consult the Library Committee, which, as he has said, has been discussing this matter in the last 12 months?

Mr. Diamond

On present information, it is doubtful whether the demand for a press cuttings library is such as to justify the expense of introducing and maintaining the service.