HC Deb 30 June 1965 vol 715 cc760-71
Mr. Carlisle

I beg to move Amendment No. 67, in page 19, line 28, after "contract", insert: which is not a contract granting the right to occupy a part of a dwelling-house in which the owner has his ordinary residence".

Mr. Deputy-Speaker

With this Amendment we can take Amendment No. 122, in page 20, line 38, at end insert: and such a reference relates to a contract which is not a contract granting the right to occupy a part of a dwelling-house in which the owner has his ordinary residence".

Mr. Carlisle

The purpose of the two Amendments, which concern the Clause to do with furnished lettings, is to limit the extension of the furnished lettings tribunal from those cases in which the owner does not live in the house part of which is let furnished.

In Committee, the Minister agreed that there was a great deal of difference between houses which were let furnished either as a means of attempting to get round the position of the present Rent Act or as a business proposition by people who do not live in the same house, and the position of a person who is the owner of a house and lets part of it as a furnished letting while himself living in the same house.

10.30 p.m.

It seems to me that the existing provision in the Furnished Houses (Rent Control) Act, 1946, is wholly sufficient to cover the case where the occupier lives in part of the house, and that it is not necessary to extend it, as is suggested in the Clause, up to the new rateable value of £400 for London or £200 for the rest of the country.

I should now like to say something about Amendment No. 122. This relates solely to Clause 33(6). By subsection (6) the Minister proposes that for the first time the tenant of a furnished letting may go to the tribunal under the 1946 Act, although in fact notice to quit has already been served upon the tenant. It is accepted that there was in many cases an illogicality that such an application could not be made once a notice to quit had been served—or, should I say, although an application had been made, since the notice to quit still ran. The tenancy would probably cease before the application arrived before the furnished letting tribunal.

I think that the Minister definitely conceded in Committee that this would raise a difficulty, in that where a person had let rooms in his house, in the remaining part of which he resided, and wished for good reason to get rid of his tenant—perhaps because he was a perfect nuisance, or because they could not get on together, or because the tenant deliberately failed to pay his rent—under subsection (6) as it stands, the tenant, or lodger—because lodgers are covered by the Bill provided they have exclusive possession of the rooms which they occupy—could deliberately avoid the notice to quit by promptly applying to the furnished lettings tribunal.

If one refers to subsection (8) one sees that the tribunal now has the power to extend for six months the running of a notice to quit. The person against whom the landlord has reason to get possession, could, after the notice to quit has been served, apply under the 1946 Act and then apply for an extension of time under Section 11 of the 1949 Act, and in those circumstances the notice to quit might not take effect for six months. I think that the Minister will remember the various cases which my hon. Friend the Member for Lewisham, West (Mr. McNair-Wilson) put to him in Committee, of the type of difficulty with which the landlord or landlady letting rooms as lodgings could be faced where lodgers deliberately refuse to pay their rent.

Perhaps the wording of the Amendment is not perfect, but by excluding the power to go to the tribunal after a notice to quit has been served in cases where the contract relates to premises in part of which the occupier lives, this would avoid difficulties to the landlord or landlady, whilst at the same time providing the further security which the Minister proposes for all other tenants of furnished accommodation. I therefore have pleasure in moving the two Amendments.

Mr. Deputy-Speaker

The hon. Member cannot move more than one Amendment, although he has spoken to the two in which he is interested.

Mr. MacColl

The hon. Member for Runcorn (Mr. Carlisle) is correct in saying that when we were discussing the Clause and some of its implications in Committee this was one of the problems which we considered—the special position of the landlord who is living in his own furnished house and is sharing accommodation with the tenant. Everybody can see the difficulty.

We wondered whether it was possible to find some way in which we could get a clear definition which would give exemption from the full control of the 1946 Act, as it is being amended, in these cases. We looked, for example, at the New York Regulations which took premises out of control when there was only one letting and where there was sharing of accommodation, but the more we looked at them the more we found difficulties. One of the difficulties was that the Milner Holland inquiries revealed that houses where there was sharing between landlord and tenant were often among those where the worst abuses took place.

It would not do simply to say that in every case where the landlord was living on the premises, they would be taken out of the protection of the Act, because in many of these cases there are difficult and bad relations as a result of the landlord living in a small part of the house and sub-letting the rest of it. That is not the sort of case about which one normally thinks. One usually has in mind the house in which two respectable people live contentedly together in a few rooms. The difficulty is one of definition. If we drew a distinction by limiting the number of tenants in the house, we fell into difficulties from the pyramiding of sub-tenancies. A landlord might live in the premises and have only one tenant, but the tenant might sub-let and have another tenant. In each case they could say, "We are simply sharing accommodation. This is not multiple letting". I am sorry that we have not found a way of getting round these difficulties and of cutting out of the provisions cases in which the landlord was residing in the premises.

Another point arising from Amendment No. 122 concerned the notice to quit. I was glad that the hon. Member explained what the Amendment meant, because I had found it difficult to follow it. I gather that he wishes to remove from the Bill furnished lettings which take place in the landlord's residence. But these are sometimes the very cases in which protection is most necessary. So much of this arose from the experience of the Milner Holland Committee that I could not advise the House that it would be wise to depart from the proposals in the Clause.

Mr. Graham Page

This Bill vastly extends the control of furnished lettings. The Amendment faces up to a very human problem—a furnished letting in a

house in which the landlord has his home. This problem is being exacerbated by the Bill and by the intention to extend this control. In the earlier stages of the Bill the Minister was in sympathy with us on this point, which concerns letting part of the householder's home and the right of the householder to get the tenant out.

It is not good enough for the Joint Parliamentary Secretary to say, "We have tried to find a formula but we have failed". If there were a real will to relieve this human problem I am sure that a way could have been found. It is not beyond the wit of man to find words to deal with this problem. In these circumstances, I hope that my hon. and right hon. Friends will divide the House.

Question put, That those words be there inserted in the Bill:—

The House divided: Ayes 147, Noes 173.

Division No. 226.] AYES [10.40 p.m.
Agnew, Commander Sir Peter Elliot, Capt. Walter (Carshalton) Miscampbell, Norman
Alison, Michael (Barkston Ash) Elliott, R. W. (N'c'tle-upon-Tyne, N.) Mitchell, David
Allan, Robert (Paddington, S.) Emery, Peter More, Jasper
Allason, James (Hemel Hempstead) Errington, Sir Eric Morrison, Charles (Devizes)
Astor, John Farr, John Munro-Lucas-Tooth, Sir Hugh
Atkins, Humphrey Fletcher-Cooke, Sir John (S'pton) Murton, Oscar
Awdry, Daniel Foster, Sir John Neave, Airey
Batsford, Brian Fraser, Rt. Hn. Hugh (St'fford & Stone) Nugent, Rt. Hn. Sir Richard
Beamish, Col, Sir Tufton Fraser, Ian (Plymouth, Sutton) Onslow, Cranley
Bell, Ronald Galbraith, Hn. T. G. D. Osborn, John (Hallam)
Bennett, Sir Frederic (Torquay) Gammans, Lady Page, R. Graham (Crosby)
Berry, Hn. Anthony Gardner, Edward Pearson, Sir Frank (Clitheroe)
Biffen, John Goodhart, Philip Peel, John
Biggs-Davison, John Goodhew, Victor Pickthorn, Rt. Hn. Sir Kenneth
Black, Sir Cyril Grant, Anthony Powell, Rt. Hn. J. Enoch
Blaker, Peter Gresham Cooke, R. Price, David (Eastleigh)
Box, Donald Grieve, Percy Prior, J. M. L.
Boyd-Carpenter, Rt. Hn. J. Griffiths, Eldon (Bury St. Edmunds) Pym, Francis
Brewis, John Griffiths, Peter (Smethwick) Ramsden, Rt. Hn. James
Brinton, Sir Tatton Harris, Frederic (Croydon, N. W.) Rawlinson, Rt. Hn. Sir Peter
Bromley-Davenport, Lt.-Col. Sir Walter Harrison, Brian (Maldon) Redmayne, Rt. Hn. Sir Martin
Brooke, Rt. Hn. Henry Harrison, Col. Sir Harwood (Eye) Rees-Davies, W. R.
Bruce-Gardyne, J. Hastings, Stephen Renton, Rt. Hn. Sir David
Buchanan-Smith, Alick Heald, Rt. Hn. Sir Lionel Ridsdale, Julian
Bullus, Sir Eric Hill, J. E. B. (S. Norfolk) Robson Brown, Sir William
Buxton, Ronald Hobson, Rt. Hn. Sir John Roots, William
Carlisle, Mark Hutchison, Michael Clark Royle, Anthony
Carr, Rt. Hn. Robert Irvine, Bryant Godman (Rye) Scott-Hopkins, James
Chataway, Christopher Jones, Arthur (Northants, S.) Sharples, Richard
Clark, William (Nottingham, S.) Kerr, Sir Hamilton (Cambridge) Shepherd, William
Cole, Norman King, Evelyn (Dorset, S.) Sinclair, Sir George
Cooke, Robert Kitson, Timothy Spearman, Sir Alexander
Corfield, F. V. Lagden, Godfrey Stodart, Anthony
Costain, A. P. Lambton, Viscount Studholme, Sir Henry
Courtney, Cdr. Anthony Lancaster, Col. C. G. Talbot, John E.
Crosthwaite-Eyre, Col. Sir Oliver Legge-Bourke, Sir Harry Taylor, Sir Charles (Eastbourne)
Curran, Charles Lewis, Kenneth (Rutland) Taylor, Edward M. (G'gow, Cathcart)
Dance, James Litchfield, Capt. John Taylor, Frank (Moss Side)
Davies, Dr. Wyndham (Perry Barr) Lloyd, Ian (P'tsm'th, Langstone) Thatcher, Mrs. Margaret
d'Avigdor-Goldsmid, Sir Henry Loveys, Walter H. Thompson, Sir Richard (Croydon, S.)
Dean, Paul MacArthur, Ian Tiley, Arthur (Bradford, W.)
Deedes, Rt. Hn. W. F. McMaster, Stanley Turton, Rt. Hn. R. H.
Digby, Simon Wingfield Mathew, Robert van Straubenzee, W. R.
Dodds-Parker, Douglas Maude, Angus Vaughan-Morgan, Rt. Hn. Sir John
Doughty, Charles Maydon, Lt.-Cmdr. S. L. C. Walker, Peter (Worcester)
Drayson, G. B. Meyer, Sir Anthony Ward, Dame Irene
Eden, Sir John Mills, Peter (Torrington) Weatherill, Bernard
Wells, John (Maidstone) Wilson, Geoffrey (Truro) TELLERS FOR THE AYES:
Whitelaw, William Woodhouse, Hn. Christopher Mr. Dudley Smith and
Williams, Sir Rolf Dudley (Exeter) Woodnutt, Mark Mr. Geoffrey Johnson Smith.
Albu, Austen Ford, Ben Miller, Dr. M. S.
Allaun, Frank (Salford, E.) Freeson, Reginald Milne, Edward (Blyth)
Alldritt, Walter Galpern, Sir Myer Morris, Alfred (Wythenshawe)
Allen, Scholefield (Crewe) Garrow, A. Morris, Charles (Openshaw)
Armstrong, Ernest Gourlay, Harry Neal, Harold
Bacon, Miss Alice Gregory, Arnold Newens, Stan
Bagler, Gordon A. T. Grey, Charles Oakes, Gordon
Barnett, Joel Griffiths, David (Rother Valley) Ogden, Eric
Beaney, Alan Griffiths, Will (M'chester, Exchange) O'Malley, Brian
Bellenger, Rt. Hn. F. J. Gunter, Rt. Hn. R. J. Oram, Albert E. (E. Ham, S.)
Bence, Cyril Hale, Leslie Oswald, Thomas
Benn, Rt. Hn. Anthony Wedgwood Hamilton, James (Bothwell) Owen, Will
Bennett, J. (Glasgow, Bridgeton) Hamilton, William (West Fife) Padley, Walter
Binns, John Hamling, William (Woolwich, W.) Page, Derek (King's Lynn)
Blackburn, F. Hannan, William Paget, R. T.
Blenkinsop, Arthur Harrison, Walter (Wakefield) Park, Trevor (Derbyshire, S. E.)
Boardman, H. Hart, Mrs. Judith Parker, John
Boston, T. G. Healey, Rt. Hn. Denis Parkin, B. T.
Bowden, Rt. Hn. H. W. (Leics S. W.) Herbison, Rt. Hn. Margaret Peart, Rt. Hn. Fred
Boyden, James Holman, Percy Pentland, Norman
Braddock, Mrs. E. M. Hooson, H. E. Popplewell, Ernest
Bradley, Tom Houghton, Rt. Hn. Douglas Price, J. T. (Westhoughton)
Bray, Dr. Jeremy Howarth, Harry (Wellingborough) Pursey, Cmdr. Harry
Broughton, Dr. A. D. D. Howarth, Robert L. (Bolton, E.) Rees, Merlyn
Buchan, Norman (Renfrewshire, W.) Howell, Denis (Small Heath) Rhodes, Geoffrey
Buchanan, Richard Hoy, James Roberts, Goronwy (Caernarvon)
Butler, Horbert (Hackney, C.) Hughes, Hector (Aberdeen, N.) Robertson, John (Paisley)
Butler, Mrs. Joyce (Wood Green) Hunter, Adam (Dunfermline) Rodgers, William (Stockton)
Carter-Jones, Lewis Hynd, H. (Accrington) Rogers, George (Kensington, N.)
Castle, Rt. Hn. Barbara Irving, Sydney (Dartford) Sheldon, Robert
Chapman, Donald Jackson, Colin Short, Rt. Hn. E. (N'c'tle-on-Tyne, C.)
Coleman, Donald Janner, Sir Barnett Short, Mrs. Renée (W'hampton, N. E.)
Craddock, George (Bradford, S.) Jeger, George (Goole) Silkin, John (Deptford)
Cronin, John Jenkins, Hugh (Putney) Slater, Joseph (Sedgefield)
Crosland, Rt. Hn. Anthony Johnston, Russell (Inverness) Small, William
Crossman, Rt. Hn. R. H. S. Jones, Dan (Burnley) Steel, David (Roxburgh)
Dalyell, Tam Jones, Rt. Hn. Sir Elwyn (W. Ham, S.) Steele, Thomas (Dunbartonshire, W.)
Darling, George Kelley, Richard Stonehouse, John
Davies, Harold (Leek) Kenyon, Clifford Stones, William
Davies, Ifor (Gower) Kerr, Mrs. Anne (R'ter & Chatham) Summerskill, Hn. Dr. Shirley
de Freitas, Sir Geoffrey Leadbitter, Ted Taverne, Dick
Delargy, Hugh Lever, L. M. (Ardwick) Thornton, Ernest
Dell, Edmund Lewis, Arthur (West Ham, N.) Tinn, James
Diamond, Rt. Hn. John Loughlin, Charles Tuck, Raphael
Dodds, Norman Lubbock, Eric Urwin, T. W.
Doig, Peter Mabon, Dr. J. Dickson Varley, Eric G.
Driberg, Tom McCann, J. Wainwright, Edwin
Duffy, Dr. A. E. P. MacColl, James Warbey, William
Dunn, James A. MacDermot, Niall Watkins, Tudor
Dunnett, Jack McKay, Mrs. Margaret Weitzman, David
English, Michael Mackenzie, Gregor (Rutherglen) Wells, William (Walsall, N.)
Ennals, David Mackie, George Y. (C'ness & S'land) White, Mrs. Eirene
Evans, Albert (Islington, S. W.) Mackie, John (Enfield, E.) Whitlock, William
Fernyhough, E. Mallalieu, J. P. W. (Huddersfield, E.) Williams, W. T. (Warrington)
Finch, Harold (Bedwellty) Mapp, Charles Yates, Victor (Ladywood)
Fletcher, Sir Eric (Islington, E.) Marsh, Richard
Fletcher, Ted (Darlington) Mellish, Robert TELLERS FOR THE NOES:
Floud, Bernard Mikardo, Ian Mr. Joseph Harper and Mr. Alan Fitch.
Foley, Maurice Millan, Bruce

Amendment proposed: In page 19, line 33, leave out from "London" to end of line 34 and insert £300, in the Special Review Areas in England and Wales (as defined by sections 17(1)(a) and (2), section 25 and the Third Schedule of the Local Government Act 1958) £150, in Scotland

£75, and elsewhere in Great Britain £100".—[Mr. Boyd-Carpenter.]

Question put, That the words proposed to be left out stand part of the Bill:—

The House divided: Ayes 171, Noes 145.

Division No. 227.] AYES [10.50 p.m.
Albu, Austen Armstrong, Ernest Beaney, Alan
Allaun, Frank (Salford, E.) Bacon, Miss Alice Bellenger, Rt. Hn. F. J.
Alldritt, Walter Bagier, Gordon A. T. Bence, Cyril
Allen, Scholefield (Crewe) Barnett, Joel Benn, Rt. Hn. Anthony Wedgwood
Bennett, J. (Glasgow, Bridgeton) Gunter, Rt. Hn. R. J. Morris, Alfred (Wythenshawe)
Binns, John Hale, Leslie Morris, Charles (Openshaw)
Blackburn, F. Hamilton, James (Bothwell) Neal, Harold
Blenkinsop, Arthur Hamilton, William (West Fife) Newens, Stan
Boardman, H. Hamling, William (Woolwich, W.) Oakes, Gordon
Bowden, Rt. Hn. H. W. (Leics, S. W.) Hannan, William Ogden, Eric
Boyden, James Harper, Joseph O'Malley, Brian
Braddock, Mrs. E. M. Harrison, Walter (Wakefield) Oram, Albert E. (E. Ham, S.)
Bradley, Tom Hart, Mrs. Judith Oswald, Thomas
Bray, Dr. Jeremy Healey, Rt. Hn. Denis Owen, Will
Broughton, Dr. A. D. D. Herbison, Rt. Hn. Margaret Padley, Walter
Buchan, Norman (Renfrewshire, W.) Holman, Percy Page, Derek (King's Lynn)
Buchanan, Richard Hooson, H. E. Paget, R. T.
Butler, Herbert (Hackney, C.) Houghton, Rt. Hn. Douglas Park, Trevor (Derbyshire, S. E.)
Butler, Mrs. Joyce (Wood Green) Howarth, Harry (Wellingborough) Parker, John
Carter-Jones, Lewis Howarth, Robert L. (Bolton, E.) Parkin, B. T.
Castle, Rt. Hn. Barbara Howell, Denis (Small Heath) Peart, Rt. Hn. Fred
Chapman, Donald Hoy, James Pentland, Norman
Craddock, George (Bradford, S.) Hughes, Hector (Aberdeen, N.) Popplewell, Ernest
Cronin, John Hunter, Adam (Dunfermline) Price, J. T. (Westhoughton)
Crosland, Rt. Hn. Anthony Hynd, H. (Accrington) Pursey, Cmdr. Harry
Crossman, Rt. Hn. R. H. S. Irving, Sydney (Dartford) Rees, Merlyn
Dalyell, Tam Jackson, Colin Rhodes, Geoffrey
Darling, George Janner, Sir Barnett Roberts, Goronwy (Caernarvon)
Davies, Harold (Leek) Jeger, George (Goole) Robertson, John (Paisley)
de Freitas, Sir Geoffrey Jenkins, Hugh (Putney) Rodgers, William (Stockton)
Delargy, Hugh Johnston, Russell (Inverness) Rogers, George (Kensington, N.)
Dell, Edmund Jones, Dan (Burnley) Sheldon, Robert
Diamond, Rt. Hn. John Jones, Rt. Hn. Sir Elwyn (W. Ham, S.) Short, Rt. Hn. E. (N'c'tle-on-Tyne, C.)
Dodds, Norman Kelley, Richard Short, Mrs. Renée (W'hampton, N. E.)
Doig, Peter Kenyon, Clifford Silkin, John (Deptford)
Driberg, Tom Kerr, Mrs. Anne (R'ter & Chatham) Slater, Joseph (Sedgefield)
Duffy, Dr. A. E. P. Leadbitter, Ted Small, William
Dunn, James A. Lever, L. M. (Ardwick) Steel, David (Roxburgh)
Dunnett, Jack Lewis, Arthur (West Ham, N.) Steele, Thomas (Dunbartonshire, W.)
English, Michael Loughlin, Charles Stonehouse, John
Ennals, David Lubbock, Eric Summerskill, Hn. Dr. Shirley
Evans, Albert (Islington, S. W.) Thornton, Ernest
Fernyhough, E. Mabon, Dr. J. Dickson Tinn, James
Finch, Harold (Bedwellty) McCann, J. Tuck, Raphael
Fletcher, Sir Eric (Islington, E.) MacColl, James Urwin, T. W.
Fletcher, Ted (Darlington) MacDermot, Niall Varley, Eric G.
Floud, Bernard McKay, Mrs. Margaret Wainwright, Edwin
Foley, Maurice Mackenzie, Gregor (Rutherglen) Warbey, William
Ford, Ben Mackie, George Y. (C'ness & S'land) Watkins, Tudor
Freeson, Reginald Mackie, John (Enfield, E.) Weitzman, David
Galpern, Sir Myer Mallalieu, J. P. W. (Huddersfield, E.) Wells, William (Walsall, N.)
Garrow, A. Mapp, Charles White, Mrs. Eirene
Gourlay, Harry Marsh, Richard Whitlock, William
Gregory, Arnold Mellish, Robert Williams, W. T. (Warrington)
Grey, Charles Mikardo, Ian Yates, Victor (Ladywood)
Griffiths, David (Rother Valley) Millan, Bruce
Griffiths, Will (M'chester, Exchange) Miller, Dr. M. S.
Grimond, Rt. Hn. J. Milne, Edward (Blyth) TELLERS FOR THE AYES:
Mr. Ifor Davies and Mr. Alan Fitch.
Agnew, Commander Sir Peter Carr, Rt. Hn. Robert Foster, Sir John
Alison, Michael (Barkston Ash) Chataway, Christopher Fraser, Rt. Hn. Hugh (St'fford & Stone)
Allan, Robert (Paddington, S.) Clark, William (Nottingham, S.) Galbraith, Hn. T. G. D.
Allason, James (Hemel Hempstead) Cole, Norman Gammans, Lady
Astor, John Cooke, Robert Goodhart, Philip
Atkins, Humphrey Corfield, F. V. Goodhew, Victor
Awdry, Daniel Costain, A. P. Grant, Anthony
Batsford, Brian Courtney, Cdr. Anthony Gresham Cooke, R.
Beamish, Col. Sir Tufton Crosthwaite-Eyre, Col. Sir Oliver Grieve, Percy
Bell, Ronald Curran, Charles Griffiths, Eldon (Bury St. Edmunds)
Bennett, Sir Frederic (Torquay) Dance, James Griffiths, Peter (Smethwick)
Biffen, John Davies, Dr. Wyndham (Perry Barr) Harris, Frederic (Croydon, N. W.)
Biggs-Davison, John d'Avigdor-Goldsmid, Sir Henry Harrison, Brian (Maldon)
Black, Sir Cyril Dean, Paul Harrison, Col. Sir Harwood (Eye)
Blaker, Peter Deedes, Rt. Hn. W. F. Hastings, Stephen
Box, Donald Digby, Simon Wingfield Heald, Rt. Hn. Sir Lionel
Boyd-Carpenter, Rt. Hn. J. Dodds-Parker, Douglas Hill, J. E. B. (S. Norfolk)
Brewis, John Doughty, Charles Hobson, Rt. Hn. Sir John
Brinton, Sir Tatton Drayson, G. B. Hutchison, Michael Clark
Bromley-Davenport, Lt.-Col. Sir Walter Eden, Sir John Irvine, Bryant Godman (Rye)
Brooke, Rt. Hn. Henry Elliot, Capt. Walter (Carshalton) Jones, Arthur (Northants, S.)
Bruce-Gardyne, J. Elliott, R. W. (N'c'tle-upon-Tyne, N.) Kerr, Sir Hamilton (Cambridge)
Buchanan-Smith, Alick Emery, Peter King, Evelyn (Dorset, S.)
Bullus, Sir Eric Errington, Sir Eric Kitson, Timothy
Buxton, Ronald Farr, John Lagden, Godfrey
Carlisle, Mark Fletcher-Cooke, Sir John (S'pton) Lambton, Viscount
Lancaster, Col. C. G. Pearson, Sir Frank (Clitheroe) Talbot, John E.
Legge-Bourke, Sir Harry Peel, John Taylor, Sir Charles (Eastbourne)
Lewis, Kenneth (Rutland) Pickthorn, Rt. Hn. Sir Kenneth Taylor, Edward M. (G'gow, Cathcart)
Litchfield, Capt. John Powell, Rt. Hn. J. Enoch Taylor, Frank (Moss Side)
Lloyd, Ian (P'tsm'th, Langstone) Price, David (Eastleigh) Thatcher, Mrs. Margaret
Loveys, Walter H. Prior, J. M. L. Thompson, Sir Richard (Croydon, S.)
MacArthur, Ian Pym, Francis Tiley, Arthur (Bradford, W.)
McMaster Stanley Ramsden, Rt. Hn. James Turton, Rt. Hn. R. H.
Mathew, Robert Rawlinson, Rt. Hn. Sir Peter van Straubenzee, W. R.
Maude, Angus Redmayne, Rt. Hn. Sir Martin Vaughan-Morgan, Rt. Hn. Sir John
Maydon, Lt. Cmdr. S. L. G. Rees-Davies, W. R. Walker, Peter (Worcester)
Meyer, Sir Anthony Renton, Rt. Hn. Sir David Ward, Dame Irene
Mills, Peter (Torrington) Ridsdale, Julian Weatherill, Bernard
Miscampbell, Norman Robson Brown, Sir William Wells, John (Maidstone)
Mitchell, David Roots, William Whitelaw, William
More, Jasper Royle, Anthony Williams, Sir Rolf Dudley (Exeter)
Morrison, Charles (Devizes) Scott-Hopkins, James Wilson, Geoffrey (Truro)
Munro-Lucas-Tooth, Sir Hugh Sharples, Richard Woodhouse, Hn. Christopher
Murton, Oscar Shepherd, William Woodnutt, Mark
Neave, Airey Sinclair, Sir George
Nugent, Rt. Hn. Sir Richard Smith, Dudley (Br'ntf'd & Chiswick) TELLERS FOR THE NOES:
Onslow, Cranley Spearman, Sir Alexander Mr. Ian Fraser and
Osborn, John (Hallam) Stodart, Anthony Mr. Geoffrey Johnson Smith.
Page, R. Graham (Crosby) Studholme, Sir Henry

11.0 p.m.

Mr. Graham Page

I beg to move, Amendment No. 69, in page 20, line 32, at the end to insert: (6) The Act of 1946 shall be amended by the insertion of the word "ordinary" before the the word "residence" in section 2(1) of that Act.

Mr. Deputy-Speaker

With this Amendment we can take Amendment No. 70, in page 20, line 32, at end insert: (6) The Act of 1946 shall be amended by the insertion of the word "domiciliary" before the the word "residence" in section 2(1) of that Act.

Mr. Page

This brief Amendment of only one word could be called the "Seaside Landladies' Charter", although it also applies to any short letting. We have been greatly concerned about the extension of the control of letting by this Bill because of the fear that it would create great hardship to landladies—and landlords for that matter—of holiday tenants where those tenants overstayed their bookings and disorganised future bookings, causing great disappointment to other people who had booked to take over the rooms from them.

The Minister has said that our fears were ill-founded on the basis that these holiday lettings are not what he terms contracts for residence, and that the 1946 Act relating to furnished dwellings applies only to such contracts. To make absolutely certain, we have given the right hon. Gentleman an alternative by offering to qualify the word "residence" in the 1946 Act with the word "ordinary", and by making sure that the Bill applies only to occupation for ordinary residence; or, as an alternative, in Amendment No. 70, to use the word "domiciliary" as specified. It may not be a particularly elegant word, but it has the virtue of making clear that we have in mind a residence for the purpose of a home, as distinct from a holiday letting or booking.

We believe that this is necessary because of the extension of control in this part of the Bill and because it does not bite on this type of letting. We hope that the Minister will be able to accept one of these words given as an alternative.

Mr. MacColl

Yes, we will.

Amendment agreed to.

Mr. Page

I thank the hon. Gentleman very much. In view of that, I shall not move Amendment No. 70, having achieved our object with Amendment No. 69.

Mr. MacColl

I beg to move Amendment No. 73, in page 21, line 11, at the end to insert: (9) In section 9(2) of the Act of 1946 (penalty for failure to comply with a notice under section 2(1) of that Act) for the words from "twenty pounds" to the end there shall be substituted the words "fifty pounds and, on a second or subsequent conviction, to a fine not exceeding one hundred pounds". This is a case of our having been rather in advance of history because when we decided to alter the punishment in the Bill for failure to give information in the case of unfurnished lettings we found that we were being rather more generous than the House had been in 1946. It seemed unreasonable to have a harsher penalty for furnished lettings than for unfurnished lettings. Therefore, the purpose of this Amendment is to remove the imprisonment provision from the 1946 Act and to extend the monetary penalties in its place.

Mr. Boyd-Carpenter

This follows the line which we urged on the Government in Committee, and, naturally, we welcome the Amendment.

Amendment agreed to.

Dr. Dickson Mabon

I beg to move Amendment No. 74, in page 21, line 30, to leave out second "and".

Perhaps we can take at the same time Amendment No. 75.

Mr. Speaker

indicated assent.

Mr. Mabon

Amendment No. 75 is the Scottish equivalent of the proposed new subsection (9) of the Clause.

Amendment agreed to.

Further Amendment made: In page 21, line 32, at end insert: and (d) in subsection (9), for the reference to section 9(2) of the Act of 1946 there shall be substituted a reference to section 7(2) of the said Act of 1943 (penalty for failure to give information required for registration under that Act), and the words in parenthesis shall be omitted".—[Dr. Dickson Mabon.]