HC Deb 22 February 1965 vol 707 cc158-89

Order for Third Reading read.—[Queen's consent, on behalf of the Crown, signified]

Motion made, and Question poposed, That the Bill be now read the Third time.

9.55 p.m.

Mr. David Webster (Weston-super-Mare)

I beg to move, to leave out "now" and at the end of the Question to add "upon this day six months."

Whatever one may have said in the past about Ministerial salaries and pensions I think that we would all agree that today the Joint Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Transport has earned his corn. I do not know whether the hon. Gentleman took part in the last debate, but he took part most courteously in two debates on Private Bills.

I do not know whether the hon. Gentleman was conspicuous in the concessions which he gave on those occasions. I believe that he is to answer the Adjournment debate tonight of my hon. Friend the Member for Essex, South-East (Mr. Braine), who has another transport problem for him, so that the hon. Gentleman will have had three debates and an Adjournment debate to answer. I am grateful that the Minister of Transport is present. His hon. Friend must have had a hard weekend doing his "prep" for these various debates.

I am less grateful to the promoters of the Bill. In many respects I think that their methods may be complained about. I understand that the proceedings of the Standing Orders Committee are confidential, but I also understand that there was considerable doubt whether the Bill was in order when first presented even to that Committee. There was a lack of consultation with local authorities which had a great interest in this matter.

I shall not again weary the House with a recital of the sorrows of Weston-super-Mare. Hon. Members have twice heard this subject discussed by me at great length in the Select Committee. A number of members of the Committee, including the Chairman, are present this evening. A number of my hon. Friends, and an hon. Member on the Government back benches, did a great deal to alleviate the situation for Weston-super-Mare and this made up for the lack of consultation.

Then we had the final blow in the last debate on the subject—this is why I am glad we have been able to air the matter on a number of occasions—of which the promoters obviously had been given little notice, when my hon. Friend the Member for Mid-Bedfordshire (Mr. Hastings), with no notice to me, fired off a volley literally behind my back—he was sitting behind me.

I complained about this to the promoters and I asked the Town Clerk of Weston-super-Mare whether the allegation made by my hon. Friend, that Weston-super-Mare declined to answer the offer for the defraying of the total cost, was an inaccurate statement. I refer now to a letter written by the promoters of the Bill on 30th January to the Town Clerk of Weston-super-Mare in which it is stated: I agree that the remarks of the hon. Gentleman"— they mentioned the name of my hon. Friend the Member for Mid-Bedfordshire— to which you refer were inaccurate". It seems to me that this is a thoroughly unsatisfactory way for promoters to conduct proceedings on a Private Bill.

I have been kind to the Parliamentary Secretary, but he will not expect me to be too gentle with him, or he may take it that I am softening him up for when the Government majority has been reduced to two or one. Here we have a situation—I hope that my hon. Friend the Member for Somerset, North (Mr. Dean) will be able to develop the point—where we have Government by rumour. We have the Rochdale Committee, as I keep calling it, the National Ports Council, which has reported to the Minister of Transport and whose Report was made in confidence.

I appreciate that my right hon. Friend the Member for Wallasey (Mr. Marples), when Minister of Transport, was in the habit himself of having secret negotiations and secret reports in these cases. Many public authorities have objected, and this includes Cardiff. I do not know where the Chancellor of the Exchequer is tonight, but I think that he is abroad explaining—

It being Ten o'clock, the debate stood adjourned.

Ordered, That the Proceedings on the Welsh Shipping Agency Bill [Lords] may be entered upon and proceeded with at this day's Sitting at any hour, though opposed.—[Mr. Tom Fraser.]

Question again proposed, That the Bill be now read the Third time.

Mr. Webster

I am grateful that I was not out of order in referring to the Chancellor of the Exchequer. I am well aware that he has a great interest as a Member for Cardiff.

The Home Secretary, when he is not in Northampton, has an interest in the Port of Newport and we have many other ports which are very much involved on the north side of the Severn Estuary. This Report has been presented in secret. What I want to say to the right hon. Gentleman is as he is here is that there have been a great many rumours as to what the findings of these Reports have been. These rumours have been heard in the Lobbies of this House and, I think, have been reported in certain newspapers, though I will not name them as I am not sufficiently sure of my facts on this point. The rumours have been to the effect that two specific ports have been selected. It seems to me rather in line with these rumours that great pressure has been put on to rush the Bill through this House.

I wonder whether the right hon. Gentleman, "Mr. 3 per cent.", the Secretary of State for Economic Affairs, has been consulted about a regional plan on this subject. I wonder whether the Minister of Land and Natural Resources has been consulted on this subject.

Mr. Arthur Probert (Aberdare)

On a point of order. Is it in order for the hon. Member to develop this subject on Third Reading of the Bill?

Mr. Deputy-Speaker (Sir Samuel Storey)

I was beginning to think that the hon. Member for Weston-super-Mare (Mr. Webster) was getting somewhat away from the Bill. He must keep to what is in the Bill.

Mr. Webster

Would it, then, be in order to come to the point made by the hon. Gentleman the Member for Ebbw Vale (Mr. Michael Foot), who last time accused me of standing in the way of modernisation and, since he has moved over into the valleys, was able to develop his point with natural Welsh hwyl?

It was said that we were resisting modernisation by the Bill. I would say, that one part of the Bill is very far from modernisation. It seems to have slipped in and I take the very gravest exception to it. My understanding of the Second Reading of the Bill was that any oil or natural gas imported through this jetty would be for the purposes of the steel works and for the steel works alone.

I would point out to the Parliamentary Secretary or the Minister—whoever is replying—that Clause 25 restricts the use of the wharf works: It says: The company shall not use the wharf works, nor permit the wharf works to be used, otherwise than for the importation of bulk cargoes of—

  1. (a) raw materials for steelworks in Wales or Monmouthshire; and
  2. (b) crude oil or natural gas."
This seems to be a complete move away from the original situation as we understood it on the Second Reading. We understood then that it was a matter of raw materials for steel works in Wales and Monmouthshire; that it was limited to Wales and Monmouthshire regarding crude oil and natural gas. As the Bill now stands as amended by the Committee—how it got there I would not know—there is no limitation on the amount of oil or natural gas which can be imported. So we have a situation which is entirely different from the situation which the House has previously understood. This is a matter of the very deepest principle, and not only to people in the South or in Somerset or in Bristol. I hope that there are hon. Members for Bristol here who will take notice of this. I take the gravest exception to the fact that this was slipped into the Bill.

We have very narrow waters to contend with. I apologise for the Admiralty charts which I have here; I do not know whether I can lay them on the Table, and indeed I am not sure that the Table is big enough for them. We have a jetty which would run approximately four-and-a half miles from Llanwern across into the Bristol Deep, where they get water at nine and ten fathoms—and within half-a-mile of my hon. Friend's constituency at the National School and Blacknor Point, just outside Portishead. The decision to make this an entry for the steel works was one which the House took in its wisdom, passing the matter on to a Select Committee. But now we have the import of oil and natural gas not only for the steelworks—and we must concede the right to import it to the steelworks—but as a right under the Bill for a major terminal within half-a-mile of the Somerset coastline.

All this is substantiated by Dr. Beeching's latest reshaping plan. On map No. 6 and on page 59 hon. Members will see that the railway oil traffic, between the main centres in 1964, from the Cardiff-Newport area was a flow of half-a-million tons per year and from Bristol into the Cardiff-Newport area was a flow of 250,000 tons a year. On page 15 there is a forward projection of railway oil traffic. This is without any pipelines which may be added. It shows no flow at all from Bristol into the South Wales ports. I stress that I am not talking about Milford Haven, which does not enter into either of these maps. It deals with the South Wales ports, with Cardiff and Newport. There may be an extension to Llandarcy. If so, I should be very surprised if it were only that, and I am deeply suspicious, for not only have we a major terminal right on our doorstep in North Somerset but we have a major terminal envisaged which will make a big difference to the whole of the port structure of this country.

I know that Bristol wants this, because as long as the end of the jetty is in the Bristol Deep, Bristol is getting the port dues. I am all for somebody who gets something for nothing. If anybody gave me money for nothing I should be delighted.

Mr. Michael Foot (Ebbw Vale)

On a point of order. Is it in order for the hon. Member on Third Reading to discuss the circumstances in which he is in favour of getting money for nothing?

Mr. Deputy-Speaker

Certainly not. He can discuss only what is contained in the Bill.

Mr. Webster

In that point of order the hon. Member for Ebbw Vale (Mr. Michael Foot) is getting money for nothing.

I come to the narrowness of the entry channel. This is a matter which has been introduced into the Bill since it was last discussed.

Mr. Michael Foot


Mr. Webster

It is still a matter of the very deepest principle.

The Joint Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Transport (Mr. Stephen Swingler)

Would the hon. Member explain why his hon. Friend the Member for Somerset, North (Mr. Dean) made exactly the same speech on 22nd December? I am following the hon. Member's speech as reported in HANSARD, and it contains exactly the same points—and it was made on 22nd December.

Mr. Webster

I was prevented from developing these points because it was not at that time appreciated that there was unlimited right of entry. The point was not made then that there was an unlimited right to bring in oil and natural gas through the jetty. I have people here who have studied the Bill at great length and who would agree that new circumstances have arisen. I hope that hon. Members appreciate that this is a matter of deep principle, and I hope that hon. Members who represent Bristol will bear it in mind.

Bristol has asked why the National Ports Council has not been to see its representatives. We have a Report presented in secret to the Ministry about the North Wales iron ore ports. We now see that the Bill enables the right to import unlimited supplies of oil and natural gas. It is significant that the Bill has been brought to the House for the third time, but prior to the first visit by the Ports Council to Bristol. This causes me considerable anxiety and I urge hon. Members to realise that I am not raising a parochial point because I do not have the honour to represent Bristol.

Bristol is getting the revenue from the Bristol Deeps. On the other hand, we must project our thoughts into the future and realise that the iron ore carriers will soon be of 80,000 tons. We are getting oil and natural gas carriers coming in and that, in some cases, can mean up to 150,000 tons. I understand that Esso has made a firm order for 250,000 tons. This creates a completely new situation. If we are to have a major oil terminal right outside the Bristol entry into Avonmouth and Portbury I would have thought that that would restrict the existing trade into Avonmouth, but I will not go on to repeat how this would affect other constituencies because I have already dealt with that matter.

Mr. Swingler

Ad nauseam.

Mr. Webster

It seems that we have struck the Minister on edge. Perhaps he will now take back the Bill for further consideration and Amendment because this is a point of considerable principle.

Mr. Arthur Palmer (Bristol, Central)

Would the hon. Member agree that everything he has said about the Port of Bristol is largely conjecture?

Mr. Webster

I have given my opinions. It is my duty to do that.

This is a matter on which I am absolutely a layman and, while I hope that I will have the support of members of the Select Committee on this point, I must admit that I am a layman in this issue and I must also admit that a great deal of it is conjecture. At the same time, however, a great deal of anxiety has caused me to raise the matter because I do not think it is something which should be kept in secret. The House should be given further information, and permission to go ahead should be held back until the Portbury project has been fully considered.

10.14 p.m.

Mr. F. Blackburn (Stalybridge and Hyde)

It should be made clear at the outset that the Bill is exactly the same as the one which was discussed on Report. If the hon. Member for Weston-super-Mare (Mr. Webster) did not notice at that time what was in the Bill that is his fault and not the fault of the Bill.

It appears to me that it is carrying enthusiasm to excess to bring the Bill again before the House, because on two previous occasions the overwhelming majority of hon. Members agreed that the Measure should go forward. It has not been a case of one side of the House against the other. Indeed, on Report it was supported from the Opposition Front Bench by the right hon. Member for Monmouth (Mr. Thorneycroft).

I suppose that I should declare my interest in the matter, since I was Chairman of the Committee which considered the Bill. My interest is that I am anxious that the 60-odd hours which my Committee spent on the Measure should not be wasted. The hon. Member for Weston-super-Mare said that certain rumours had been circulating in the House about a report from the National Ports Council which might affect the Bill. I thought I heard most things that take place in this House, but that particular rumour must have escaped me.

In any case, I think that both the hon. Member for Weston-super-Mare and the hon. Member for Somerset, North (Mr. Dean) know that if they succeeded in defeating this Bill they might be in a worse position than they would be letting it go through. I do not know what the National Ports Council will report, or, if it has already reported to the Minister, I do not know what it has reported, but if the Council reports that it thinks that this scheme should go ahead it is very important to both hon. Members that the Bill should go forward, in order that the safeguards put into it by the Committee should be there for their benefit. If the Bill were to be defeated, those safeguards would go.

I sincerely hope that these enthusiastic Members for Weston-super-Mare and Somerset, North—having made their point on so many different occasions, and the House having on so many different occasions overwhelmingly decided that the Bill should go forward—will not, on this occasion, press their objection to a Division; and that the House will agree to give the Bill its Third Reading.

10.16 p.m.

Mr. Eldon Griffiths (Bury St. Edmunds)

I speak in some difficulty here as a member of the Committee, and I should like at the very beginning to pay my own tribute to the chairmanship of that Committee. Throughout a very long series of sittings it was patient and forbearing, and set for me, as a new Member, an example of how it should be done. I have no doubt that the Committee's decision was the right one and that it is in the national interest that the jetty should be constructed, but the Committee imposed some restrictions on the jetty and, with utter sincerity, I ask the Minister to listen while I state what I understood those conditions to be.

First of all, we put in some matter which saves Weston—on that there is no dispute. Secondly, we put in matter concerning the use of the channel by small boats, and asked that means should be found whereby boats could get under the jetty at various states of the tide. Thirdly, and I think that this is the important issue which has arisen, we imposed some restrictions on the use to which the jetty could be put.

As I read the Bill as reported, it seems to me that what Clause 25 appears to confer, or would be conferring if this enabling Bill were accepted at a future stage, goes further than I, as a member of the Committee, intended. It reads: The Company shall not use the wharf works, nor permit the wharf works to be used, otherwise than for the importation of bulk cargoes of— (a) raw materials for steel works in Wales or Monmouthshire … I have no dispute with that whatsoever— and (b) crude oil or natural gas. As I read (b), it confers on the promoters of the Bill an almost indefinite right to import as much crude oil or natural gas as they may wish, for any purpose they like, and not confined to making steel. As I read it, they could build a complete new oil port—a petrochemical industry—but that was not in my mind, as a member of the Committee, when we reported the Bill.

Mr. Blackburn

It ought to go on the record that I, as Chairman, think that the Bill is correct in that matter.

Mr. Griffiths

I bow to the Chairman of the Committee.

I should like to go beyond that and explain how it is, as I see it, that the confusion has arisen. Perhaps the Joint Parliamentary Secretary will bear with me, because it is a fairly technical matter. We must get to the bottom of it. When summing up the Committee's conditions to learned counsel, the Chairman made these remarks which I quote from Day 14 of the proceedings, page 13—Tuesday, 28th July. He first dealt with Weston. There is no disagreement about that. Then the Chairman went on to say this about the restriction of the use of the jetty: The Committee have considered the proposed Clause, which was agreed with Newport, restricting the use of the jetty and are prepared to insert the Clause in the form presented to them. That is the restriction on the use of the jetty. We must determine—this is the heart of the matter—what restriction we meant when we said "The Clause which was agreed with Newport".

Unfortunately, there are two Newports in this case. I must confess that until I went upstairs I had not realised that there were two Newports. I will quote the restriction sought by the Borough of Newport. Paragraph 12 of the Petition presented by the Aldermen and Burgesses of the County Borough of Newport asked the Committee to restrict the use of the jetty in this fashion, that it should be a condition that those works should not be used for the import or export of general merchandise or for the export of steel for which adequate facilities have been provided". There is, however, the Newport Docks. This is the British Transport Commission, which also put in a Petition and throughout their Petition referred to themselves as "your Petitioners Newport Docks". The Newport Docks restriction was a much more extensive one than the Borough of Newport restriction. I am sorry that this is technical, but it is a technical matter which we are dealing with. In the case of the Newport Docks the restriction appears in paragraph 11, namely, that the use of the proposed works should be limited to the importation of iron ore and oil for use at the Spencer works and the Ebbw Vale Works and that it is not their intention that the said works should be used for imports of general merchandise". I contend that this is where the problem lies. In the case of the Borough of Newport the restriction is only that the jetty must not be used for general merchandise. In the case of Newport Docks the restriction is that it should be used only for the import of ore and oil for use at the Spencer Works and the Ebbw Vale Works. This is precisely what I understood the Committee to mean when it restricted the use of the jetty.

Mr. Blackburn

I think that the hon. Gentleman is merely quoting from the original petitions submitted by the Newport Docks and Newport County. Has he in front of him a copy of the suggested Amendments which were submitted to us by Weston-super-Mare, North Somerset and Newport?

Mr. Griffiths

Yes. I have had the opportunity of going through those. I think that there is very strong internal evidence in the last day of the proceedings, where the Chairman of the Committee was advising learned counsel of our decisions. I think that I can prove conclusively from the evidence contained therein that what we had in mind throughout was the restriction sought by Newport Docks, namely, by the British Transport Commission acting on behalf of Newport Docks.

I do not believe—I must say this in all honesty—we had in mind the much smaller restriction of the Borough of Newport. Indeed, as the testimony shows, on the last day Mr. Brown, who, I believe, was counsel for Somerset, said: We also put forward a clause covering the same ground as the Newport and the British Transport Docks Board clause"— not "clauses" but "clause". Mr. Brown was clearly referring to the Clause which was put forward by the Newport docks people, namely, the British Transport Commission. I think that this is the heart of a misunderstanding, that the Committee sought to restrict the use of the jetty in accordance with the Newport Docks petition and not the Borough of Newport.

I ask the Minister to consider this evidence, because it was never in my mind that we should be empowering the promoters to establish an oil port for the general import of oil and natural gas.

10.26 p.m.

Mr. Michael Foot (Ebbw Vale)

I said when we discussed this matter on 22nd December and, indeed, when we discussed it in the last Parliament that we could all well understand the position of hon. Members representing Weston-super-Mare, North Somerset and other parts of the country who felt that either the amenities or the interests of their areas were being injured by this proposal for building a jetty. Therefore, nobody makes any criticism because they bring these matters before the House as forcibly as they can. I would be the last person to protest against their right to do so. They have every right to make every effort that they can to oppose a Bill which they dislike for these reasons.

But the House should be prepared to remember what has happened all this time and should remember how many objections from hon. Gentlemen who have spoken on the Bill have fallen by the wayside as we have gone along. When we had the first debate on this subject in June of last year, two main objections were made by the previous Member for North Somerset. He said, first of all, that there were many experts who objected to the plan that Richard Thomas & Baldwins were proposing. We said, "Why do not you let it go to the Committee where all the experts can put forward their case and the matter can be examined there?" But he was eager to prevent that happening. I can understand why he was so eager, because when the Committee listened to the experts the Committee found that the experts had reached a very different conclusion from that which the previous Member for North Somerset supposed the Committee would reach if it examined all the facts.

Then we had the second objection when we debated the matter in June, that Weston-super-Mare would be very adversely affected. On that issue even the hon. Member for Weston-super-Mare (Mr. Webster) has capitulated today. He is perfectly satisfied with the agreements which have been made on the subject and, indeed, he has paid his tribute—very properly, if belatedly—to Richard Thomas & Baldwins.

Mr. Webster

Will the hon. Gentleman read the proceedings of 22nd December? I also pay tribute to the Chairman and to the members of the Select Committee.

Mr. Foot

I do not want to detract from the previous tribute, but the hon. Member in the last debate was still objecting on the ground that his own constituency would be affected. However, as he said, he was withdrawing that objection in effect and was substituting the main case which he presented.

Mr. Webster

The hon. Gentleman must not misrepresent me. I said that I would not repeat it, but that I would go on to other objections of a broader nature.

Mr. Foot

The last thing I want to do is to misrepresent the hon. Gentleman. I think that one of the reasons he did not wish to repeat the argument was that he thought no one was likely to be persuaded by it. The hon. Gentleman has just underlined that point very strongly, and he now appears to nod his head in confirmation of what I have said.

I congratulate the hon. Gentleman who moved the rejection of the Bill on his wisdom in restraining himself in the early part of his speech. I am sorry that I cannot offer the same congratulation on the latter part of his speech. I am pointing out that one by one the various objections which have come from hon. Members representing that part of the country have fallen. They have fallen because the facts have been overwhelmingly against them, and my prophecy is that just as they have had to surrender their previous arguments so they will have to surrender the arguments which they have belatedly put forward now.

Mr. Robert Cooke (Bristol, West)

Before leaving the subject of the amenities of Weston-super-Mare, will the hon. Member not concede that safeguards for these amenities have been won by the hard work of my hon. Friend the Member for Weston-super-Mare (Mr. Webster), and his colleagues?

Mr. Foot

They have been won by the hard work of the hon. Member for Weston-super-Mare. I do not want to detract from his efforts—but they have been won also because the House accepted the proposal which we advocated, which was that the Bill be submitted to the Committee to be examined carefully. We prophesied that if the House would take our advice and submit the Bill to that procedure all these claims would be examined, as they were examined, under the chairmanship of my hon. Friend the Member for Stalybridge and Hyde (Mr. Blackburn). As a result it was possible to make all the representations to that Committee which the previous hon. Member for Somerset, North, had said he would not be able to make successfully. Just as the House was wise in accepting our advice previously, so I hope will it do the same now.

Now we have the argument falling back on the last resorts of hon. Members who oppose the Bill. The hon. Member for Weston-super-Mare says that new matter was introduced surreptitiously in some kind of way and sneaked into the Bill so that people could not see what was happening between 22nd December and then. The hon. Member knows very well that that is not the case, because exactly the same speech, almost word for word, was made by the hon. Member for Somerset, North (Mr. Dean), as will be seen from column 1124 of HANSARD for 22nd December, as the speech which has just been delivered. In other words, the House discussed and examined the matter on 22nd December and rejected these arguments. Now we have the hon. Member for Bury St. Edmunds (Mr. Eldon Griffiths), who was himself a member of the Committee, coming forward with his interpretation of what he thinks were the representations made to that Committee.

Mr. Eldon Griffiths

With respect, I was very careful, as the hon. Member must realise, to say that this was my own recollection. I spoke for myself.

Mr. Foot

That is exactly what I was trying to emphasise—that the hon. Member spoke for himself and nobody else. That is the precise point which I want to underline, because what the House has to take into account is not the opinion or estimation of the hon. Member, however forcefully he may put it, but the Report from the Committee as a whole. The Report of that Committee as a whole is not in the same sense as that of the hon. Member. This was underlined by my hon. Friend the Member for Stalybridge and Hyde. My hon. Friend said that he did not accept the hon. Member's inter- pretation. Therefore, it might be thought that all we had to do was to weigh the alternative opinions of the Chairman of that Committee and the hon. Member, but even that is not the case. Our argument is even stronger than that.

Hon. Members who know the procedure of the House know perfectly well that on Third Reading of a Bill a vote against the Bill is not a vote on a particular detail. It is a vote against the whole principle of the Bill. I can understand the hon. Members for Somerset, North and Weston-super-Mare saying that they will vote against the Third Reading because they are opposed to the whole principle of the Bill. They have been so opposed throughout, but it is not open to the hon. Member for Bury St. Edmunds to vote against the Bill even if the grounds on which he has spoken were correct, and we have seen that they are not. But even if they were, this is a detail of the Bill, and the details of the Bill, according to our procedure, are examined by a Committee. When the matter comes back to the House of Commons, the House votes again on the main principle of the Bill, according to what has happened in the Committee.

If the hon. Member for Bury St. Edmunds had any doubts or difficulties about the Bill in Committee, he should have raised them there. What we have to do on the Third Reading is to vote on the principle of the Measure. Although hon. Members who have opposed the Bill throughout are perfectly within their rights, we are entitled to say, as a House of Commons, that, whatever may have been the previous situation, today their opposition to the Bill has been frivolous and fraudulent. [HON. MEMBERS: "Oh."] It has been frivolous because they have not advanced any serious reason to sustain their argument. They have tried to fall back on the introduction of fresh arguments which are shown to be false. If they had merely said, "We stick by our original opposition to the Bill", I could respect them the more; but they have tried to entice support on their side against this Measure by misrepresenting it to the House of Commons, and that is a very serious thing to do.

Mr. Webster

No. What misrepresentation has there been?

Mr. Foot

I do not want to repeat what I have said. I have tried to show that it is quite false to suggest, as the hon. Gentleman did in his speech, that a fresh matter had been introduced into the Bill. That was the hon. Gentleman's main argument, but, in fact, no fresh matter has been introduced into the Bill. This is exactly the same Bill as the House discussed on 22nd December. That is why I say there has been misrepresentation. I understand the purpose of it; the hon. Gentleman is trying to get a few others to vote with him this evening, and he has tried to put up some reason to persuade his hon. Friends that something appalling and unparliamentary has occurred.

Mr. Paul Dean (Somerset, North)

If the hon. Gentleman reads the report of the previous debate in HANSARD, he will find that the arguments which my hon. Friend the Member for Weston-super-Mare (Mr. Webster) and I put forward on this point were precisely the arguments which my hon. Friend has put forward this evening.

Mr. Foot

The hon. Member for Somerset, North takes the point very quickly. I congratulate him. He has put my case much more succinctly than I could. I hope to have his support in the Lobby later. I hope—though I shall not shed too many tears about it—that he will not lose his seat in Somerset, North as a result. What he has said confirms what I have argued. There was, in fact, no new matter introduced, and this is the same Measure which the House discussed on 22nd December. Therefore, the hon. Member for Weston-super-Mare was misrepresenting the situation when he said that something new had been introduced.

After having had the Bill meticulously examined by a Committee of the House of Lords and a Committee of the House of Commons, having had frequent debates on the Floor here—this being the third—after all the money and effort spent, after all the trouble taken by Richard Thomas & Baldwins and others to meet all legitimate points of objection, it would be an outrageous state of affairs if the Bill were to be defeated, particularly if it were to be defeated for frivolous and misrepresented reasons.

But it is worse than that. Even the passage of the Bill does not mean that the jetty is necessarily to be built. There are some further safeguards in this "rushed" Measure, as the hon. Gentleman in one of his flights of fancy called it. There are further Parliamentary tollgates to be passed. We are to have the report of the National Ports Council, which has to decide on the whole question of where new port facilities can best be provided in South Wales. I hope that the report will come soon and that the Government will pronounce their views on it soon and that we may eventually get some action, for that is what many people want. That is one safeguard. We have also the safeguard of the procedure recommended in the Bill. The matter has to be referred again to the Ministry of Transport. It is not as if even when the Measure is passed the proposals of the Bill will immediately come into operation.

The Bill was introduced because of the public spirit of the firm concerned. [Laughter.] Of course it was. It is concerned to improve the facilities for the import of iron ore for both Llanwern and Ebbw Vale, and thereby it contributes to our exports and welfare, and it hopes to contribute further to the nation's production efforts. It wants to get on with the job. Therefore, it was advised to have the Bill in preparation so that there should be the minimum of delay after the National Ports Council had made its decision.

The Bill has been through all the Parliamentary procedures. Every possible objector had had every chance to put his objection before a House of Lords Committee and a House of Commons Committee, and there will be more possibilities of putting objections in the further examination under the Ministry of Housing and Local Government procedure provided for in the Bill. The firm has done everything conceivable in its power to accord with the procedures laid down by Parliament. There is not an hon. Member who can honestly say that it has tried to interfere with what this House and Parliament are trying to lay down about how the matter should be conducted.

It would be a most deplorable state of affairs if the House were so utterly irresponsible at the end of all this procedure as to throw the Bill out. As I said at an earlier stage, if the Bill were thrown out, we could give up talking about the modernisation of the country. This is an attempt by one of the most public-spirited firms in the country to ensure that the productive power of the nation is increased. The firm has made as big a contribution to our exports as any other. It is a firm whose steel production was one of the reasons why we won the war. The responsibility today is on, not the firm, but the House of Commons.

The procedure for trying to modernise Britain is bad enough. I hope that the Government will learn from the way this procedure has operated that it should be speeded up and made much faster. If every firm which wants to provide fresh facilities for increasing its productive power has to go through all the endless rigmarole that we have had over the Bill, it will be well into the next century before we modernise Britain.

The House has a responsibility to those who are trying to get ahead with the job. I hope that the House will make no mistake and that there will not be any attempt at frivolous action as though this were a matter of no importance. If the House were to reject the Bill, it would inflict wanton injury on a firm which has done its best to contribute to the nation's welfare.

10.44 p.m.

Captain Walter Elliot (Carshalton)

I have not previously spoken on the Bill on the Floor of the House and I confess that I did not realise that it aroused so much passion as the hon. Member for Ebbw Vale (Mr. Michael Foot) has put into it. I was a member of the Select Committee and would like to pay my tribute to the Chairman, the hon. Member for Stalybridge and Hyde (Mr. Blackburn), who conducted the long and arduous proceedings so successfully. I am sorry that some slight difference of opinion seems to have emerged as a result. In the end, probably it would not have made any difference anyhow if we had considered this aspect upstairs and so avoided this misunderstanding.

It is argued by my hon. Friends that the Bill will allow unlimited supplies of crude oil or natural gas to go in through this jetty if it is built. I am sorry that the hon. Member for Ebbw Vale attacked my hon. Friend for the point he put forward, for my hon. Friend made it only to get the record straight. That is my reason for putting my view now. I do not believe that we considered this point upstairs, although, as I have said, if we had it might well have made no difference to our decision. I do not believe we considered this and, speaking from memory, I will give one reason for my thinking this.

With my nautical background, I was particularly interested in the movements of shipping around the jetty and asked questions on the subject. I am sure that we considered only the movements of the ore carriers. We were given detailed figures of the number of ore carriers and their size that would use the jetty every week. In my recollection, we did not consider oil or gas tankers.

I asked questions particularly on the interruption of shipping going into and coming out of Bristol and having to pass this jetty with ore carriers being turned and made fast alongside. It transpired that the number of carriers using the jetty would not interfere with the movement of traffic. We never considered whether traffic would be interfered with if oil or gas tankers were using the channel. Nor did we consider the size of these tankers.

It may be that if these oil or gas tankers were bigger than the ore carriers—which, as I recall it, would be of 65,000 tons—the jetty would have to be stronger. The piers would have to be stouter. We had long discussions on the effect building the jetty would have on the regime in the Severn Estuary, but we did not consider the additional number of ships if oil or gas tankers were to be involved. I repeat, however, that it might have made no difference to our decision if we had. In considering the amenities of the North Somerset coast, we considered only the effect of the ore carriers. We did not consider oil slicks or gas smells.

Mr. Blackburn

It is not very edifying for members of the Select Committee to argue on the Floor of the House about what exactly took place upstairs. But surely the hon. and gallant Gentleman remembers that, when we discussed the question of iron ore being imported to the works, it was admitted that the works would require fuel and raw materials to deal with the ore when it was there. Consequently it would be necessary for the firm to be able to import oil and natural gas. If the hon. and gallant Gentleman will return to the suggested Amendment that was submitted to us—I am not talking about the earliest Petitions—both by Newport and by Weston-super-Mare, I think that his anxiety will be dispersed.

Captain Elliot

I do not want to hold up the House by turning to Amendments suggested in Committee, but my recollection about the question of oil and natural gas is the same as that of my hon. Friends—that they were for the Spencer Works only and not in unlimited quantities. If we had considered all these things, it may well be that our decision would not have been different. There was no question of our failure to modernise Britain, for we considered the matter from that point of view. I am sorry that this small difference of opinion has arisen, but I thought that I should make clear for the record what is my recollection of what happened.

10.51 p.m.

Sir William Robson Brown (Esher)

I am profoundly distressed by the trend of the discussion. The House has considerable responsibilities for the economic position of the nation and the steel industry in particular. I would be a most unhappy man if at the end of the debate I found that the Bill had been rejected at the eleventh hour. At some time in this Parliament we have to debate the general position of the steel industry, and I should be most unhappy if my party could be accused of standing in the way of the progress of a great national industry and an important component of it in South Wales.

The purpose and intention of the jetty are clear and specific. They are to reduce the operating costs of the great works at Llanwern, and terrific capital expenditure has been embarked upon for this purpose. The Bill has taken longer than any other in my Parliamentary experience. It has now been debated on the Floor of the House three times. It has been to a Select Committee, which has made its recommendations.

I listened to the reasoned arguments of my hon. Friend the Member for Somerset, North (Mr. Dean) and my hon. Friend the Member for Weston-super-Mare (Mr. Webster) and at one time I thought that they were advancing general representations from their constituencies for which I had great sympathy, but then they suddenly abandoned all that tonight, apparently, and at the last minute they have introduced a red herring. Is there any hon. Member who believes that Richard Thomas & Baldwin, or any other company in the United Kingdom, can import natural gas and dispose of it as it will? As the law stands, it can bring in all the gas it requires for its own use, but it cannot dispose of it to anybody else without the authority and agreement of the Gas Council. That completely disposes of that argument.

The second argument is that the import of oil might affect Bristol docks, but is it seriously suggested that oil will be discharged on the Newport side of the Bristol Channel and then taken all the way through Gloucestershire to Bristol? I have never heard so ludicrous a suggestion and I utterly repudiate it.

Mr. Webster

That suggestion was never made.

Sir W. Robson Brown

That is the way it was put to me and I can only follow the argument as presented. The House has a grave responsibility in all these questions. The Select Committee made its Report. Rather belatedly, we are debating an argument produced at the last minute to try to circumvent or to reject the Report of the Select Committee.

This is not the last word on the matter, as the hon. Member for Ebbw Vale (Mr. Michael Foot) said. It is not usual that I am in agreement with the hon. Member, but tonight I have to be, because he is the Member for Ebbw Vale. He has a vested interest in this matter for the great steelworks at Ebbw Vale. I should like to have heard the right hon. and learned Member for Newport (Sir F. Soskice) speaking for Newport, and speaking for the Llanwern works as well.

Mr. Peter Thorneycroft (Monmouth)

The right hon. and learned Member for Newport (Sir F. Soskice) has nothing to do with the Llanwern works.

Sir W. Robson Brown

Whoever represents the constituency in which the Llanwern works is situated makes no difference to the argument.

When the House votes tonight for the Bill, which has gone through so much travail, discussion and debate, this is not the end of the matter, as the hon. Member for Ebbw Vale correctly said. There is, next, the inquiry by the British Transport Docks Board, which will weigh up these problems and the question of what should be taken on its jetty and decide accordingly; and, ultimately, the Minister has to give his sanction. I am content and prepared to leave it to the final inquiry and to the Minister to make his judgment. I hope that neither of them will stand in the way of our economic growth and prosperity.

10.57 p.m.

Mr. Peter Thorneycroft (Monmouth)

As the only hon. Member in the House with a vested interest in this case, because the jetty and the Llanwern works are in my constituency, I wish to detain the House for only a few moments.

There is something painfully familiar about almost all the speeches made in this debate. I make no complaint about that, and I make no complaint about my hon. Friend the Member for Weston-super-Mare (Mr. Webster). Of course, he is right to put his constituency points, and I do not think that anybody would contend that he had failed to put them. He has put them, as my hon. Friend the Member for Somerset, North (Mr. Dean) said, not once, but many times, and the whole House is now familiar with them in detail. It must be some satisfaction to him and I hope that it will do both of my hon. Friends the credit they deserve with their constituents.

As to my hon. Friends who attended the Committee, I would say that in Monmouthshire, when we say Newport, we mean Newport. We do not mean Newport Docks, the British Transport Commission, or Dr. Beeching. We mean simply Newport. When we speak of the Clause submitted by Newport, no doubt we mean and understand the Clause submitted by Newport.

However, that seems to be rather a Committee point than a point to be taken upon the Third Reading of the Bill and although, like other hon. Members on this side, I am not always in complete agreement with the hon. Member for Ebbw Vale (Mr. Michael Foot), who represents a subsidiary portion a little way to the north of the area under discussion, I agree with him from the Parliamentary aspect that on Third Reading of the Bill we are discussing the substance of the Bill.

By now, the House should more or less have reached a conclusion about the sub- stance of the Bill and that if we intend to modernise the country at all, we had better give facilities for one of our greatest steelworks to import the raw material that it requires. Anybody in the House, on either side, on the Front Bench or on the back benches, who failed to support that proposition would find it difficult to say that he seriously believed in the modernisation of the country.

We have been all through this over and over again and, at the end of it, we will not even be sure that anything especially happens about it. This is only an enabling Bill. The planning permission procedure will be followed by the Minister. The whole parade will be gone through. My hon. Friend the Member for Weston-super-Mare or those interested will be able to appear at a public inquiry. At every point, the whole process of democracy can be gone through almost all over again. This is not a dramatic Measure, but it is one step to enable the modernisation of Britain to be carried a little further. Therefore, I simply rise to say that, though I have opposed the hon. Gentleman the Parliamentary Secretary at various times in my life, on this occasion I wish him well and hope that he can persuade all of us that we should support the Bill in the Lobby tonight.

11.0 p.m.

The Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Transport (Mr. Stephen Swingler)

This is the third Bill of this kind with which I have had to deal tonight, and, therefore, I hope that the House will sympathise with me if I am brief. I think that I can be brief, because it is quite clear that there is nothing new to be said about this Bill at all. There could not be anything new.

This is the Bill which was considered by us on 22nd December, and which we adopted. There were then opportunities for all hon. Members to come forward. It is a little surprising that, after we have been through all these processes—what the right hon. Member for Monmouth (Mr. Thorneycroft), on the last occasion, called "putting the thing through a fine toothcomb"—there are still hon. Members who appear not to have read the Bill, or not to be aware of what is in it. I understand that these debates on Third Reading should be on what is in the Bill, though I trust that I shall be granted some of the latitude granted to others.

I do not think that the hon. Member for Weston-super-Mare (Mr. Webster) does himself any credit or his constituents the slightest good by making false allegations and misrepresentations. The matters he referred to were brought forward on 22nd December and the opportunity for debate was given then. The hon. Member knows as well as I do that there is nothing new to be considered now on the Third Reading of the Bill. He knows perfectly well that all the effects on amenity, and so on, have been gone into, and that the promoters agreed to write into the Bill certain duties imposed upon them to make models and carry out tests to diminish any nuisance which might be caused.

The hon. Member knows that the assurances have been repeated that before any Government decision is taken on the matter, the recommendations of the National Ports Council about imports into South Wales and the effects of making any jetties will be debated in the House. He knows—because I gave it on 22nd December—that the assurance has been given that before anything is done there will be consultations with the local authorities involved about amenity and other aspects.

These assurances have been given. We received the Report of the National Ports Council on 20th January and it is being urgently considered. The hon. Gentleman should know very well that such communications between my right hon. Friend and the Council are confidential. I should have thought that he would have known that much of the evidence given to the Council was given in private. That is why the Report will not be published.

But, once again, I use the opportunity to say that the recommendations made to the Government, and which are now under confidential consideration, will be published. They will be debated in the House before any decision is taken by the Government, but, to expedite this matter, because it is one of national importance—a great scheme is involved here which will involve the investment of tens of millions of pounds—we want this enabling, empowering Bill to be passed so that, should it turn out that this is the scheme which is chosen, there will be no delay in carrying it through.

I therefore hope that we can draw this debate to a conclusion and, if it is necessary—I hope that it will not be—we can go to the vote.

Mr. Donald Box (Cardiff, North)

I wonder whether the Parliamentary Secretary can clear up one point. He said that the recommendations of the National Ports Council would be debated on the Floor of the House before a Government decision is taken. Can he confirm that he meant what he actually said—that it will be debated on the Floor of the House before a Government decision is taken?

Mr. Swingler

What is the matter with the hon. Member? How many times do I have to say it? I have said it again tonight, it was said on 22nd December, it was said by my predecessors, we have said it repeatedly to hon. Members who have raised the matter, that the Council's recommendations will be debated in the House before any decision is taken. Now that I have said it so many times, perhaps hon. Members will accept it.

11.5 p.m.

Mr. Robert Cooke (Bristol, West)

Before the House gives the Bill a Third Reading, I might speak on behalf of the other end of the jetty from that supported—if that is the right word—by my right hon. Friend the Member for Monmouth (Mr. Thorneycroft), because the business end of the jetty, if I may so call it, comes within the jurisdiction of the Port of Bristol.

Hon. Members for the City of Bristol—all of them, on both sides of the House—have, naturally, watched the proceedings on the Bill with some interest. Although we are most anxious that nothing should impede the future progress of the Port of Bristol, on the welfare of which so much else depends in the surrounding districts, we have at all stages been most anxious that nothing should be put in the Bill which would in any way damage the surrounding countryside unnecessarily.

I pay a tribute to the work of my hon. Friend the Member for Weston-super-Mare (Mr. Webster) who, in spite of some of the strictures passed on him this evening, has done a worthy job in bringing the attention of the public, and of the House and its Committees, to all the various misgivings which there have been, some of them completely groundless and some perhaps not so groundless. He has served a very useful purpose in bringing this matter to the notice of the House, although I could not follow him this evening in some of the allegations which he made. My hon. Friend the Member for Somerset, North (Mr. Dean) has joined him in this work in seeing that all is properly ventilated.

I find myself in some agreement with the hon. Member for Ebbw Vale (Mr. Michael Foot), although not with anything that he said in backing up his case, because his whole speech could be torn to pieces in detail. I will not do that now; it would be out of order, as I am sure his speech was out of order. But I join him in saying that it is surely right that the House should give a Third Reading to the Bill, which empowers the jetty to be built if it is found to be the best piece of machinery for modernising the steel industry and making it competitive in a competitive world.

On my own account from the City of Bristol and on behalf of the Port of Bristol Authority, I hope that the Bill will be given a Third Reading tonight.

11.8 p.m.

Mr. Paul Dean (Somerset, North)

The arguments which have been advanced by the Minister today have been very similar to those put forward in the last debate. They did not satisfy my hon. Friend the Member for Weston-super-Mare (Mr. Webster) on that occasion and they do not satisfy us now, either.

The essence of the arguments put forward by the Parliamentary Secretary on both occasions has been, broadly, "Do not worry. It is only an enabling Bill. We have not decided which scheme will be the most suitable to provide the facilities required. There will be further consultation and another debate." If we look at that from the point of view of my hon. Friend and myself, who feel that the interests of our constituents will be deeply disturbed by the Bill, it is rather like saying to us, "We have not yet decided whether we shall chop off your heads, but we invite you to help us to sharpen the chopper, so that if we decide to chop them off we shall be able to do so rapidly." This is a grim prospect, which offers very little comfort to my hon. Friend or myself.

The hon. Member for Ebbw Vale (Mr. Michael Foot) said that our arguments in bringing this forward again were frivolous. Feeling as we do about this matter, we would have been failing in our duty to our constituents had we let the Bill go forward without another opportunity to comment further on it.

It is not only a question of the arguments which were put forward on the last occasion we discussed the Measure—arguments to which, we believe, we have still not received satisfactory answers—because certain things have evolved and developed since then. I do not want to enter unduly into the genuine misunderstandings which appear to have arisen about the Bill, but it is of some relevance that two hon. Members who had considered the Bill in Committee were of the opinion that Clause 25 which is now in the Measure was not, in fact, the proposal which they thought was being included.

This is an extremely important point. It is one of the real fears which we had when we spoke in the debate on the last occasion. We felt that the original intention had been substantially extended—and the more it was extended the more the arguments about noise, dust and so on—the amenity arguments generally—were strengthened.

Mr. Eldon Griffiths

I am sure that my hon. Friend would not use the intervention of my hon. and gallant Friend for Carshalton (Captain W. Elliot) or my own to sustain his case in objecting to the Bill as such. I remind him that my hon. and gallant Friend and voted in Committee for the jetty to be built in the national interest. I hope, therefore, that no one will fail to realise that that was the Committee's intention.

My purpose in intervening—as was the object of the intervention of my hon. and gallant Friend—was to place the truth as we knew it on the record. I regret that the Minister did not see fit to deal with the point I made. However, with respect to my hon. Friend, I trust that he will not use my intervention in an effort to sustain his case.

Mr. Dean

I appreciate my hon. Friend's point. Nevertheless, the Minister could at least have given his views on this matter, for it concerns not so much any misunderstandings there may have been in Committee, but a matter which intimately concerns the Government, because my understanding of it is that the Government, in giving their agreement to the Bill, laid down certain conditions. These were given in the Report of the Iron and Steel Board for 1963, which stated that the Government's agreement was conditional on the Bill not being drawn more widely than was necessary to provide for the import of raw materials. That was the original intention and condition on which the Government's agreement for the Bill to proceed was given; whereas Clause 25 is much wider than that. Because it is wider, the real fears which we have on amenity grounds are thereby substantially increased. That is one reason why we have felt bound to bring the matter forward again, in the hope that the Minister would be able to comment further on it.

On another point, the Minister has not been able to give satisfaction this evening any more than he did on the previous occasion. I asked him to specify what the consultations with local authorities would be. He told me that they would be on the amenity aspects, but the important point is whether those consultations will merely be a polite talk, or whether the local authorities will be consulted as the bodies responsible for the planning and development of their areas.

The significance of this is that if they are to be consulted as planning authorities, one assumes that the normal procedures will operate, and that objections will be followed by a local public inquiry at which the local authorities and individuals will have their chance of putting their case. The Minister has not said whether or not that will be the case. If not, it seems to me to be most unfair to local authorities which are charged with the development and protection of natural amenities of their areas.

Much of the coastline both in the vicinity of the proposed jetty and elsewhere is already designated as an area of outstanding natural beauty, much of it is in the green belt—and negotiations are now going on between the county council and the Ministry of Housing to make the green belt proposals firm. How can we expect local authorities to carry out this extremely onerous and difficult task of preserving the national heritage—a task laid on them by the Ministry of Housing and Local Govern- ment—if they are not to be effective as planning authorities in regard to a matter taking place in the estuary rather than on the land?

On the last occasion, the Minister said that whatever the recommendations of the Council might be there would be a debate in the House on them. The hon. Gentleman has said tonight that the Government have now received the Report, and I understood him to say that the recommendations will be published. I would be grateful if he could clear up the confusion that certainly exists in my mind on that point, because his right hon. Friend the Minister told me, in reply to a Question on 20th January: The Council's report is a confidential report to the Government. I do not think anyone has ever suggested that it should be published, but when the Government's decision is made known information will be given about the Council's conclusions."—[OFFICIAL REPORT, 20th January 1965; Vol. 705, c. 196.] I understand the hon. Gentleman now to say that the Report will be published in full in advance of the debate in the House, and the Government reaching their conclusion—

Mr. Swingler

The hon. Gentleman may not have been here, but I said that it was understood that certain evidence was given to the National Ports Council in confidence. I do not know whether the hon. Gentleman would wish the Government to break that confidence, but very important information was given to the Council confidentially. It is, therefore, quite clear that the Report as a whole cannot be published. I should have thought that that was obvious to any person.

What I quite clearly said was—and this is the "umpteenth" time that I have given the assurance—that the recommendations of the National Ports Council will be published, together with the Government's proposals, before any decision is taken, and will be debated in this House at the same time as the consultations go on with the local authorities. I think that should now be fairly clear and I hope it will not fall to me to have to reply to that point any more.

Mr. Dean

I am grateful to the hon. Gentleman, now that he has cleared the matter up. I understand him to say that the full recommendations of the National Ports Council will be published, although the confidential evidence which the Council may give will not. This has cleared up an immensely important matter. The impression that I received from the Minister was that the recommendations would not be published and that we would only get what the right hon. Gentleman on the former occasion referred to as information about the Council's conclusions. I am glad of the clarification, because without that it would be quite impossible to have an effective debate in this House. It would have meant that the Government would have had the whole of the information and this House would have had only a part of it.

There are, then, at least three points which I have mentioned with which the Parliamentary Secretary has not been able to deal fully or on which he has not given a satisfactory reply. In view of that, I have no alternative but to register my strong protest against the Bill, about the way in which it has been handled, and to do this in the only effective way possible.

11 .23 p.m.

Mr. Stephen Hastings (Mid-Bedfordshire)

I intervene briefly, although I am sure the Parliamentary Secretary would be the first to agree that this important matter should be debated fully.

I understand that my hon. Friend the Member for Weston-super-Mare (Mr. Webster) alluded to some remarks of mine when the Bill was last before the House. I am sorry that I missed the earlier part of his speech. He referred to my remarks when I said that I was

under the impression that Richard Thomas & Baldwins had offered to pay for certain tests necessary to prove the effect of this jetty upon the currents in the channel and that subsequently the firm had said that this was not so.

I should like to say to my hon. Friend that I was under this impression. I think that the hon. Member for Ebbw Vale (Mr. Michael Foot) was under the same impression. I was given this impression by a firm of consultants to Richard Thomas & Baldwins which has a high reputation. The firm was under this impression and gave me the information in perfectly good faith. Having said that, and on the basis of what I understand my hon. Friend said in his speech, I am more than ready to withdraw the assertion that I made earlier.

I have little more to add except to point out that this debate is really about steel. Anybody who knows anything about the steel industry knows perfectly well that where we are lacking is in the sector of freight rates. It is in the cost of importing ore into this country that the fault lies. If our competitors—the Japanese, the Americans and the Swedes—had heard this debate tonight they would have been amazed at the patience which the House has shown at the perfectly legitimate defence which has been adduced by my hon. Friends the Members for Weston-super-Mare and Somerset, North (Mr. Dean). For my part, I hope that the Bill will go through.

Question put, That now" stand part of the Question:—

The House divided: Ayes 65, Noes 2.

Division No. 62.] AYES [11.25p.m.
Bennett, J. (Glasgow, Bridgeton) Hannan, William Palmer, Arthur
Blackburn, F. Hastings, Stephen Price, J. T. (westhoughton)
Blenkinsop, Arthur Hayman, F.H. Probert, Arthur
Braddock, Mrs. E. M. Houghton, Rt. Hn. Douglas Robertson, John(Paisley)
Brown, Sir Edward(Bath) Howell, Denis(Small Heath) Ross, Rt. Hn. William
Buchan, Norman (Renfrewshire, W.) Howie, W. Shore, Peter(Stepney)
Channon, H.P.G. Hoy, James Silkin, John(Deptford)
Coleman, Donald Johnston, Russell (Inverness) Slater, Mrs. Harriet (Stoke, N.)
Cooke, Robert Jones, Dan(Burnley) Solomons, Henry
Cousins, Rt. Hn. Frank Kenyon, Clifford Swingler, Stephen
Cullen, Mrs. Alice Lawson, George Thorneycroft, Rt. Hn. Peter
Davies, G. Elfed (Rhondda, E.) McAdden, Sir Stephen Wainwright, Edwin
Diamond, John McBride, Neil Walker, Harold (Doncaster)
Dodds, Norman McCann, J. Watkins, Tudor
Fernyhough, E. Mackie, George Y. (C'ness & S'land) Wells, William(Walsall, N.)
Fitch, Alan(Wigan) Mackie, John(Enfield, E.) Whitlock, William
Fletcher, Raymond (Ilkeston) Mahon, Peter (Preston, S.) Willis, George (Edinburgh, E.)
Fraser, Rt. Hn. Tom (Hamilton) Maxwell, Robert Wilson, Geoffrey (Truro)
Freeson, Reginald Neal, Harold Woodburn, Rt. Hn. A.
Galpern, Sir Myer Newens, Stan
Gardner, Edward O'Malley, Brian TELLERS FOR THE AYES:
Hamilton, James (Bothwell) Oram, Albert E. (E. Ham, S.) Sir William Robson Brown and
Hamling, William (Woolwich, W.) Orme, Stanley Mr. Michael Foot.
currie, G. B. H. Hunt, John (Bromley) TELLERS FOR THE NOES:
Mr. Webster and Mr. Dean.

Bill read the Third time and passed, with Amendments.

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