HC Deb 19 November 1964 vol 702 c606
15. Mr. Ron Lewis

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will empower the Carlisle State Management to extend their selling points.

Mr. George Thomas

My right hon. and learned Friend is considering representations on this subject from the local advisory committee.

Mr. Lewis

In view of the fact that 15 trade customers outside the area obtained supplies from the scheme, is it not illogical and absurd to deny similar facilities to other applicants whose premises are within reasonable distance of the scheme?

Mr. Thomas

This is a complicated subject. [Laughter.] If the House will bear with me, it is the nationalised industry to which I am sympathetic and it is the drink trade to which, of course, I am completely neutral, as long as I hold this office. I may say that all relevant factors are being borne in mind.

Mr. Lewis


Mr. Deputy-Speaker

Order. The hon. Gentleman must not attempt to speak unless he is called.

Mr. Ridley

Before the hon. Gentleman does what his hon. Friend suggests, will he look into the finances of the State scheme? Is he aware that the taxpayer is getting a ridiculously low return on his capital? Will he do something to make sure that the taxpayer gets a square deal?

Mr. Thomas

That is hardly a question for me. It is a question for one of my other right hon. Friends, and I will find out which one it is.