HC Deb 10 November 1977 vol 938 cc856-7
Mr. Litterick

On a point of order, Mr. Speaker. I seek your guidance on a personal matter which I think concerns the House.

During Question Time on Tuesday the hon. Member for Chingford (Mr. Tebbit) shouted across the House at me: Why do you not go and have another heart attack? I must apologise, Mr. Speaker, for raising this question rather late, but, feeling that the hon. Member for Chingford may have been overcome by a fit of enthusiasm, as so often happens with every one of us from time to time, and said rather more than he might otherwise have said. I took the opportunity to check it with him afterwards. To my surprise and shock he was as bloody minded then as he was in the Chamber.

I seek your help, Mr. Speaker. Is such behaviour permissible in the House? If it is, I suspect that we are in danger of provoking violence in this Chamber.

Mr. Tebbit

What I said to the hon. Gentleman at the moment when he and some of his hon. Friends were vociferously advocating trade unionism in Her Majesty's Forces was that he had better be careful or he would get another heart attack.

Mr. Litterick


Mr. Tebbit

When the hon. Gentleman wished to speak to me about it later, I told him that I had no wish to discuss the matter or any other matter of that sort with him.



Mr. Speaker

Order. Clearly, nothing will be gained by pursuing this matter now, and there is nothing that I can do. Any hon. Member may raise a point of order about remarks that I do not hear—because I am very fortunate from time to time—but if I do not hear remarks and they are not raised as points of order at the time, there is nothing that I can do about it.


Mr. Fairbairn

On a point of order, Mr. Speaker. I appreciate that you have the benefit—or the disadvantage—of the long-bottomed wig, but I distinctly heard the hon. Member for Birmingham, Selly Oak (Mr. Litterick), in his pursuit of pacifism, use the word "liar ". Is that a piece of parliamentary language which can be tolerated?

Mr. Speaker

Everyone knows that the word "liar" is an unparliamentary expression, and it should not be used.