HC Deb 17 April 1970 vol 799 cc1745-6

Question proposed, That the Clause stand part of the Bill.

Mr. Edward Lyons

I hope that I shall be forgiven for these persistent interruptions. It is the last one, on this Bill at any rate. May I ask why it is that no date has been fixed for the implementation of this new Bill? Why is it necessary for the matter to be left at large, as appears to be the case in subsection (2)? What difficulties are there in the way of appointing a date?

Mr. Peter Archer

I sympathise with my hon. Friend in the point which he has raised. I see the force of the argu- ment that normally the commencing date for a Bill may, with profit, be inserted in the Bill itself, so that those consulting it can see for themselves the precise date at which it was intended that it should begin to operate. The difficulty is, quite simply, an administrative one.

It is that if a specific date were inserted in the Bill one would need to be sure that the necessary rules of court would be ready by that date, and, clearly, since a substantial part of the reform is intended to be by way of rules of court it would be very unsatisfactory if part of the reform of the law were to come into operation on a specific date and the remainder, to be implemented by rules of court, were to come into operation at a later date. It would be very much better that the whole of the reform should be initiated on the same date.

That is why subsection (2) enables the Lord Chancellor to specify by order the date on which the Bill is to be implemented.

Question put and agreed to.

Clause 3 ordered to stand part of the Bill.

Bill reported without Amendment.

Motion made, and Question, That the Bill be now read the Third time, put forthwith pursuant to Standing Order No. 55 (Third Reading), and agreed to.

Bill accordingly read the Third Time and passed, without Amendment.

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