HC Deb 29 April 1965 vol 711 cc618-9
31. Mr. McNair-Wilson

asked the President of the Board of Trade when he intends to introduce legislation to deal with merchandise marks.

Mr. Darling

I cannot at present add to the Reply I gave to the hon. Member on 25th February.

Mr. McNair-Wilson

Is the hon. Gentleman aware that on that occasion he told me that this would be urgently attended to? Is he aware that shoddy goods of all sorts are on sale in our shops and that, particularly with footwear, customers have no way of discovering what materials go into their manufacture?

Mr. Darling

I am aware of these problems. They have been drawn to our attention frequently and new legislation will be introduced as soon as practicable.

Sir Knox Cunningham

When can we expect some of the dynamic legal reform which was promised before the election?

Mr. Darling

If the hon. and learned Member will look at the legislative programme of this Government he will see that it is all there.

Mr. Rose

In considering this matter, will my hon. Friend go into the question of verbal misrepresentation and also into the problems posed by television advertising and ensure that there is a proper method of prosecution embodied in any Act which will be forthcoming?

Mr. Darling

Yes, Sir. The question of oral misrepresentation is covered and it will be an offence under the terms of the legislation. Enforcement will be done by the local authorities. I think that that covers the other point which my hon. Friend raised.