HC Deb 29 March 1983 vol 40 cc223-34
Mr. Charles R. Morris

I beg to move amendment No. 39, in page 35, line 11, at end insert `or in the course of, or in connection with a trade dispute with a telecommunications operator'.

Mr. Deputy Speaker

With this, we shall discuss amendment No. 40, in page 35, line 24, at end insert— '(3) No person being an employee of a company running a telecommunication system shall be guilty of an offence—

  1. (a) under section 45 of the Telegraph Act 1863, insofar as that section makes it an offence for any person employed by the Post Office wilfully to omit or delay to transmit or deliver any message or by any wilful act or omission to prevent or delay the transmission or delivery of any message; or
  2. (b) under section 20 of the Telegraph Act 1868, as amended, insofar as that section makes it an offence for any person having official duties connected with the Post Office, or acting on behalf of the Postmaster General, contrary to his duty, to intercept the contents or any part of the contents of any telegraphic messages or any message entrusted to the Postmaster General for the purpose of transmission.
If the conduct in question takes place exclusively or primarily in contemplation of furtherance of a trade dispute with those running telecommunications systems. (4) No person shall be guilty of soliciting, inciting or procuring or attempting to solicit, incite or procure or aiding or abetting the commission by any employee of companies running telecommunications systems of an offence under this section, section 45 of the Telegraph Act 1863 or section 20 of the Telegraph Act 1868, unless it be established that one or more of the persons so solicited, incited or procured, or aided or abetted or in relation to them an attempt to solicit, incite or procure as aforesaid is alleged to have been made would not have been entitled to the immunity conferred by subsections (1) and (3) above in relation to trades disputes in the event of his or their being charged with the relevant substantive offence under any of the said provisions. (5) Where in pursuance of any agreement the acts in question in relation to any of the offences referred to in subsection (1) and (3) above are to be done exclusively or primarily in contemplation or furtherance of a trade dispute with companies running telecommunications systems that offence or those offences are to be disregarded for the purpose of section 1(1) of the Criminal Law Act 1977.'.

Mr. Morris

I would be failing in my duty if I sought to minimise the crucial importance of these two amendments, concerned as they are with the right to strike by the staff of British Telecommunications. Given the enactment of the Bill, British Telecommunications at present is poised to enter the private sector with 235,000 employees who will be exposed to legal challenge if they resort to industrial action. That is the main issue posed in these two amendments. Unless the House is careful, it may be writing a recipe for industrial conflict if the Government refuse to accept the principles enshrined in these two amendments.

The amendments seek solely and exclusively to remove the legal hazards confronting telecommunication workers who seek to exercise what is generally regarded as a basic right enjoyed by virtually every other group of organized workers in Britain today—the rights to strike, withdraw labour, and participate in forms of industrial action that represent less than a complete withdrawal of labour.

British Telecommunications workers claim — and I believe it—that they are among the most reasonable and responsible trade unionists. Throughout the history of the Post Office, when it was the British telephone system, and during the era of British Telecommunications as a public corporation, BT workers have been proud of their traditions of co-operating with their employers in the interests of the community and in the interests of providing one of the most efficient telecomunications systems in the world. These workers have a right and an entitlement to strike without incurring the risk of legal challenge.

I am delighted that the Solicitor-General is sitting next to the Minister of State. I trust that that comfortable and close proximity will induce in the Minister of State a slightly different response from that which he exhibited when a similar amendment was discussed in Committee.

My hon. Friend the Member for Newcastle-under-Lyme (Mr. Golding) encapsulated what the Opposition are seeking in these two amendments when he coined the phrase that the Opposition are not seeking a charter for industrial action. The Opposition are seeking to ensure that British Telecommunication workers have the same rights as are enjoyed by other groups of organised workers.

For the benefit of the House I shall explain the legal background to the amendments that I am moving. Before 1976, telecommunications workers always assumed that they had the right to take industrial action. Indeed, they exercised that right during a one-day strike in 1964 and again during the seven-week strike in 1971. They even took action against France in 1973 by banning operator calls for one week in protest against French nuclear tests in the Pacific. There were no legal repercussions on any of those occasions. I concede that fact at the outset.

Until the Grunwick dispute no doubts about the legality of telecommunications workers' action in withdrawing their labour were expressed. However, in November 1976, when communications workers boycotted mail to Grunwick, doubt arose about whether Post Office and telecommunications workers could legally withdraw their labour. The issue was not put to the legal test until January 1977 when the National Association for Freedom asked the then Attorney-General to institute a legal injunction against the Union of Communication Workers and the Post Office Engineering Union about plans to boycott telecommunications and post to South Africa.

The Attorney-General at the time refused to grant the injunction but the National Association for Freedom obtained the support of the Appeal Court, presided over by Lord Denning. The court decided that the unions were violating the Telegraph Act and issued the injunction that had been sought.

Lord Denning stated that it was clearly an offence to "wilfully" delay or interfere with telephone calls or procure others to do so. The House of Lords decided in July 1977 that the Appeal Court had acted wrongly in granting the injunction but the Law Lords endorsed Lord Denning's view that it was a criminal offence to black telephone calls. The union's victory in the House of Lords only shielded telecommunications workers from being the target of civil injunctions—I want to emphasise that. They remained, and remain today, vulnerable to criminal prosecution if they withdrew their labour. It is that simple fact that communication workers, generally, find intolerable. Lord Diplock said, that in his view, that such conduct … would constitute a criminal offence". He was referring, of course, to the action of blacking particular telephone calls and blacking certain mail.

Lord Diplock went on to say that, in his view, such conduct … would constitute a criminal offence punishable upon indictment by imprisonment or a fine is plainly beyond argument. At that time, Lord Diplock was saying that the legal case was beyond argument. The relevant clause that produces this legal anomaly is section 45 of the Telegraph Act 1863, which states that it will be an offence: If any Person in the Employment of the Company—wilfully or negligently omits or delays to transmit or deliver any Message; Or by any wilful or negligent Act or Omission prevents or delays the Transmission or Delivery of any Message. From that quotation it is quite clear that it is an offence to interfere with telecommunications but it is equally clear that section 45 was directed primarily at what might be termed "criminal" rather than "trade union" disruption. Only by the judicial extension of the law, which took place in 1976–77, were workers challenged on taking industrial action.

At the conclusion of the first day's hearing by the Court of Appeal of the South African action taken by communications workers in respect of South Africa in 1977, to which I have referred, Lord Denning set out section 45 of the Telegraph Act, 1863 and noted that anyone who solicits or procures the prevention or delay of any telegraphic message is guilty at common law as an aider and abetter.

Having commented on the specific provisions he concluded his observations on the statutory position by observing: Many statutes are not at all clear but those"— he was referring to section 45— are clear beyond doubt. That was Lord Denning saying clearly and specifically that according to his interpretation of the law, section 45 of the Telegraph Act 1863 was "clear beyond doubt".

Lord Justice Lawton regarded the legal position as plain, and Lord Justice Ormrod said: we are dealing in this case with the plainest breach of the criminal law which it is possible to imagine and equally clearly with explicit threatened future breaches. As the House will recall, the case later came back for a further hearing before the same court. After a full hearing, which lasted several days, Lord Denning refuted the suggestion that the statutory provisions were outdated and should be regarded differently in a modern industrial context. He said: Those enactments are so clear that I see no reason for anyone to require the position to be tested in the courts. If the trade union, or its officers, asked for the advice of any lawyer, the answer must have been: You cannot do it. It is contrary to the law. 6.30 pm

In general terms, those interpretations were again endorsed by the House of Lords judgment in July 1977. As a result, the status of telecommunications workers, like that of Post Office workers, is unique and, I believe, a legal anomaly in comparison with workers in other service industries. Section 4 of the Conspiracy and Protection of Property Act 1875 shows that gas and water workers were on the same footing as telecommunications workers in that they were guilty of a criminal offence if they acted wilfully to deprive people of their gas and water supplies.

Mr. Barry Henderson (Fife, East)

Perhaps the right hon. Gentleman could clarify the situation. When he talks of an industrial dispute, is he thinking of a dispute between employees and a telecommunications operator in general, or BT in particular, or is he thinking more widely and of disputes in which the employees take action in furtherance of someone else's industrial dispute?

Mr. Morris

I am seeking to establish that telecommunications workers should generally enjoy the same right as any other group of organised trade unionists in this country to indulge in industrial action, in keeping with the rules of their trade unions. Telecommunications workers should be treated no differently from any other group of workers in seeking to exercise their right to strike and to take industrial action.

I wanted to draw a comparison between telecommunications, water and gas workers. I have already pointed out the contents of section 4 of the Conspiracy and Protection of Property Act 1875. Section 31 of the Electricity Supply Act 1919 imposed the same condition on electricity workers. However, all the conditions affecting water, gas and electricity workers were repealed under schedule 9 to the Industrial Relations Act 1971. Therefore, water, gas and electricity supply workers are not treated in this way. For some illogical reason that I have been unable to discover from ministerial responses, telecommunications workers are treated differently.

The two amendments seek to discover why telecommunications workers should be singled out in this way. What possible justification can there be for imposing different conditions on telecommunications and Post Office workers? The peculiarity of the status of telecommunications workers was acknowledged by official Conservative spokesmen for industry when the Conservative party was in opposition. When the present Minister of State, Department of Industry, then the hon. Member for Kingston upon Thames (Mr. Lamont) spoke for the Conservative Opposition, he said that he supported a restricted right of industrial action against employers for Post Office and telecommunications workers. On 17 February 1978, he said: We recognise that Post Office workers feel that they are in a unique position. They feel that whilst others such as the electricity workers, have the right … the Post Office workers are in an anomalous position, and I should find it difficult to argue that Post Office workers are more like policemen than like power workers."—[Official Report, 17 February 1978; Vol. 944, c. 886.] If the hon. Gentleman said that in opposition, how can a refusal to take action when in government be justified? In June 1978, the then Conservative spokesman, the hon. Member for Surrey, North-West (Mr. Grylls) said unequivocally: we believe that it is proper for postal workers to have the right to strike against their employer."—[Official Report; June 1978, Standing Committee C; 21 June 1978, c. 8.] Why say something in opposition that one is not prepared to stand by when in government? The Minister must answer that point when he replies.

Postal and telecommunications workers should have the right to strike against their employers. The question is whether telecommunications workers can legally take industrial action when engaged in a trade dispute with their employers. It can, and no doubt will, be argued that Lord Denning's judgment in 1977 suggested that industrial action against the employer by telecommunications workers might not fall foul of the law. Lord Denning was far from categoric in his interpretation. As the House will recall, in 1971 there was a seven-week strike of Post Office workers, who, at the time, included telecommunications workers. Lord Denning said: In 1971 there was a strike in which the postal workers stopped work for several weeks. I would not be prepared to assert that this was a breach of the criminal law. It could be said that, by stopping work, they did not wilfully detain or delay the mail. It was, moreover, a trade dispute for which the union was not liable in the Civil Courts. Howsoever that may be, no action was taken in the Courts at that time to test the legality of the action. That is the position that we are in. Telecommunications workers who wish to participate in industrial action remain open to a possible legal challenge. The two amendments seek to remove that possibility.

During consideration of the British Telecommunications Bill 1981, the Government—and certainly the present Minister of State—appeared to argue that Lord Denning's somewhat tentative view should allay the anxiety of telecommunications workers, and that specifically expressed by the Union of Communication Workers and the POEU. On 30 January 1981, in reply to those anxieties, the present Minister of State wrote to the general secretary of the Union of Communication Workers as follows: There appears to be a clear distinction between delay or misconduct in handling mail or telecommunications on the one hand and a strike involving withdrawal of labour on the other. Whilst some kinds of industrial action short of the complete withdrawal of labour could constitute offences, particularly where the action involved breach of the employee's contractual obligations to his employer, a strike involving the withdrawal of labour should not amount to a criminal offence. Neither the decision of the Court of Appeal nor the House of Lords in the Gouriet case, to which you refer, suggests a contrary view. In fact, Lord Denning's judgment points clearly to the view that the right to strike is unaffected. The law, therefore, seems to be as you wish it to be. If that is the considered view of the Minister of State let him make the law crystal clear and remove the threat that exists that telecommunications workers are open to legal challenge if they resort to industrial action. I remind the Minister of State that there is widespread interest among telecommunications workers generally in this legal point and I hope that he will give the considered view of the Government for refusing to take action to remove this legal anomaly.

Mr. Tom Ellis (Wrexham)

I rise mainly to ease the mind of the Minister of State, who gets terribly worried about what the Alliance will do—whether it will support the Government or the official Opposition—and does not seem to appreciate that very frequently sensible people might support neither. I can put him out of his misery tonight by saying that we shall be supporting this amendment. Although there are some technical weaknesses in it, the spirit of the amendment is so overwhelming and obvious that we shall be very happy to support it.

For all sorts of reasons—which, in order to be brief, I will not go into now—if the Bill were not moving the state away from the industry, making private companies, there would be much more argument for refusing the right to strike since the people would be employed by the state. There are now to be private companies and denying the people employed in them the right to strike seems to be completely contrary to all our traditions and to the fundamental principles referred to by the right hon. Member for Manchester, Openshaw (Mr. Morris).

There is one point on which we feel that in a technical sense the amendment cannot be supported. It applies to subsection (1)(a) and (b). Where it applies to (b)—that is, by providing that people on strike should be allowed intentionally to modify or interfere with the contents of a message—we cannot support it because that would be equivalent to somebody on strike in manufacturing industry being able to go round with a sledghanuner smashing the machinery. That is a technicality, however. We wholeheartedly support the spirit of the amendment and will be trooping into the lobby in our great strength against the Government.

6.45 pm
Mr. Stan Thorne

It is not my intention to speak at length so my right hon. Friend the Member for Salford, West (Mr. Orme) need not look quite so worried. I wish to say only a few words because we debated this matter extensively in the Committee and it was quite clear then, as it is now. I do not want to assume what the Minister of State or the Solicitor-General will say on this subject, although I think it is fairly clear what that is likely to be.

It is interesting that spokesmen for this Government have on many occasions alluded to police states and the deprivation of civil rights in several countries—and this at a time when they are implementing legislation that deprives workers in a particular industry of the elementary right to strike. I do not think it is going too far to equate that with the concept of slavery. If workers in this industry cannot respond to difficulties over their working conditions, their pay or anything else that directly affects them because they would be breaking the law, that, it seems to me, is little different from the concept that we have heard described many times by Government Members of a police state.

There are certain other indications, but if I dealt with them now, Mr. Deputy Speaker, you would rule me out of order. The indications are plain. The authoritarian government we have seen over the last four years grows in significance through the activities of people such as the Secretary of State for Employment and others. I forecast that if we were unfortunate enough to be faced in a few years with yet another Conservative Government there would be even further erosion of civil liberties.

I hope that all Opposition Members will find it absolutely imperative to vote in favour of ensuring that in future British telecomunications workers have the elementary right to withdraw their labour in certain circumstances.

Mr. Golding

My message from the members of the POEU is that the Solicitor-General is saying that one may strike but one must not take other industrial action. If a man is on scheduled overtime—say four hours' overtime—he may strike for 12 hours, but he may not work for eight hours and strike for four hours. He may strike, but he may not work to rule if that is impeding the business in ways which cannot be justified. That is the daftness of the legislation. That is the situation that the Solicitor-General and the Government are tryin,g to defend.

I want to say a few words about the dispute with Mercury, because the Minister of State has referred to that. The POEU wishes it to be known that Mercury, on its own admission, is not going to provide any new service. It will dilute British Telecom's future profitability by competing on the most lucrative business routes currently available. Mercury is, therefore, an unnecessary duplication and waste of national resources. Although we [the POEU] remain firmly of the view that it will not be for the benefit of the community as a whole, competition is an established fact. We believe that British Telecom will compete and be effective against its rivals. However, we object to the fact that British Telecom is being forced to give up its own telecommunications network for use by these rivals. This is the purpose of our industrial action against connecting Mercury to British Telecom's network. Mercury was created to establish an independent alternative network to British Telecom. Although we do not support this, we acknowledge the fact that it is going to happen. However, we do not intend to see Mercury exploiting the network which British Telecom has created over very many years, and which is based upon the work of our members, in order to do this, especially as this exploitation will reduce British Telecom's business and hence the job opportunities for these members. No respectable business should be forced to hand over the use of its assets in this way, British Telecom included. That is the message that the POEU wishes to give the Government and the Solicitor-General. We believe that it is absolutely right to be able to use industrial action to safeguard jobs and conditions of service.

Mr. Kenneth Baker

I shall have to consider carefully what the hon. Member for Newcastle-under-Lyme (Mr. Golding) has just said about the position that the Post Office Engineering Union has taken over connecting to the British Telecom network. The British Telecom network is not owned by the Post Office Engineering Union; it is a national asset and agreements exist for British Telecom to provide for interconnection. As I said yesterday at the Dispatch Box—and it was reported—we would expect British Telecom to honour those agreements.

I reiterate that it is extraordinary that the Post Office Engineering Union should have that attitude and at the same time ask that it should be given the exclusive privilege to lay cable television networks in Britain. Can it not see that any prospective partners for which BT is looking, and hence the Post Office Engineering Union, will be looking carefully at the decisions that the POEU will be making over the next few days and weeks? If they are in danger of having the plug pulled upon them as regards interconnect, what assurance can possible consortium partners have in association with BT in cable provision? I hope that it will be taken into account by the POEU.

As the House knows, this issue was debated two years ago during proceedings on the British Telecommunications Act 1981, and recently in Committee. I should like first to consider the extent of employees' liability under the provisions to see whether the new subsections are necessary. Immunity for employees involved in trade disputes was dealt with when similar provisions were discussed in Committee on the 1981 Act as well as in Committee on this Bill. The statement made by the Attorney-General in Committee in 1981 said that the offences would not apply in cases where there was a withdrawal of labour but left the presumption that a successful prosecution could result where industrial action short of a full withdrawal of labour occurred. I do not think that there is any dispute about that interpretation.

The Attorney-General's advice in 1981 was that section 45 of the Telegraph Act 1863, and certain provisions in the Post Office Act 1953, were all directed at dereliction of duty involving one or more messages or postal packets and that a complete withdrawal of labour could not have those characteristics. It followed that in his opinion it was inconceivable that a prosecution in respect of the offences in question would succeed in the event of a strike that involved a complete withdrawal of labour. I emphasise that point in view of the strong speech of the hon. Member for Preston, South (Mr. Thorne).

The Attorney-General went on to consider whether industrial action short of a complete withdrawal of labour would be caught by the provisions but he was unable to give firm guidance. His conclusions were, first, that a refusal to undertake voluntary overtime could not lead to proceedings because the essence of voluntary work is that one can chose whether or not to partake in it.

However, if overtime was part of an agreed rota system defined in any contract of employment, refusal to work the extra hours might well be construed a wilful breach of duty and as such come under the provision of the enactments. The second point was that working to rule would not be a negligent or wilful act if it involved genuinely applying agreed rules and so could not be the subject of a successful prosecution under the provisions. Thirdly, he made the point that discriminatory action against one or more persons—for example, by refusing to provide service to him or them—could justify prosecution under the offences as it could be deemed a wilful refusal to undertake the transmission of a message contrary to duty.

I stress that the Attorney-General's comments were directed to criminal proceedings arising out of section 45 of the Telegraph Act 1863 and certain provisions of the Post Office Act 1953. But it can readily be seen that Post Office employees can do a great deal in connection with a trade dispute without incurring criminal liability.

The offences in clause 39 are updated versions of the offences in section 45 of the Telegraph Act 1863, as the right hon. Member for Salford, West (Mr. Orme) reminded us in his opening speech. There seems no reason why the opinion of the Attorney-General on the operation of those offences in relation to industrial action should not equally apply to the offences under clause 39.

Let us consider what the Solicitor-General said to members of the Standing Committee on the same issue in respect of clause 39. He emphasised three points about the offence. He said, first, that because it creates a criminal offence it will always be interpreted in favour of the liberty of the subject; secondly, that intention is the essential ingredient; and, thirdly, that the offence is one that is committed by individuals so that the individual charged has to have done the act of preventing or delaying transmission with the intention of preventing and delaying before he can be convicted.

The Solicitor-General confirmed that no offence under clause 39 of preventing, delaying or interrupting the transmission or reception of a message would be committed if the interruption was the result of a complete withdrawal of labour. However, the Solicitor-General said that there was a risk that action short of a strike that was discriminatory or selective, especially perhaps if secondary, would amount to a criminal offence under clause 39. As examples of discriminatory or selective action, the Solicitor-General instanced the intentional blacking of a certain message or messages or a class or classes of message. The Solicitor-General found it hard to see how refusing to do overtime would constitute an offence if there was no obligation under contract to do any.

On working to rule, the Solicitor-General noted that whether an offence would be committed depended on whether the work to rule was genuine. If an employee said that he would do everything that he was under contract to do and no more, that would be an end of the matter. But if working to rule was a means of bringing work to a halt the position might be different.

The Bill is not intended as a vehicle to amend industrial relations or employment law and for that reason clause 39 does little more than update the wording of the offences in section 45 of the Telegraph Act 1863. I stress that the Bill does not take away the right of an employee of a public telecommunications operator to strike—not just BT but all public telecommunications operators. The effect of clause 39 is simply to extend to all public telecommunications operators certain safeguards against the interruption and delay of telecommunications, for which safeguards have existed since 1863. Those safeguards have not resulted in any prosecution arising out of industrial action, nor, so far as I know, have they inhibited the withdrawal of labour. I must oppose the amendments and I hope that they will be rejected by the House.

Question put, that the amendment be made:—

The House divided: Ayes 231, Noes 288.

Division No. 106] [6.57 pm
Abse, Leo Cunliffe, Lawrence
Allaun, Frank Cunningham, Dr J. (W'h'n)
Alton, David Dalyell, Tarn
Anderson, Donald Davidson, Arthur
Archer, Rt Hon Peter Davies, Rt Hon Denzil (L'lli)
Ashley, Rt Hon Jack Davis, Terry (B'ham, Stechf'd)
Ashton, Joe Deakins, Eric
Atkinson, N.(H'gey) Dean, Joseph (Leeds West)
Bagier, Gordon A.T. Dewar, Donald
Barnett, Guy (Greenwich) Dixon, Donald
Barnett, Rt Hon Joel (H'wd) Dobson, Frank
Beith, A. J. Dormand, Jack
Benn, Rt Hon Tony Douglas, Dick
Bennett, Andrew (St'Kp't N) Dubs, Alfred
Bidwell, Sydney Duffy, A. E. P.
Booth, Rt Hon Albert Dunnett, Jack
Boothroyd, Miss Betty Dunwoody, Hon Mrs G.
Bottomley, Rt Hon A.(M'b'ro) Eadie, Alex
Bradley, Tom Eastham, Ken
Bray, Dr Jeremy Ellis, R. (NE D'byshre)
Brocklebank-Fowler, C. Ellis, Tom (Wrexham)
Brown, Hugh D. (Provan) English, Michael
Brown, R. C. (N'castle W) Evans, loan (Aberdare)
Brown, Ronald W. (H'ckn'y S) Evans, John (Newton)
Brown, Ron (E'burgh, Leith) FauIds, Andrew
Buchan, Norman Field, Frank
Callaghan, Rt Hon J. Ford, Ben
Callaghan, Jim (Midd't'n & P) Forrester, John
Campbell, Ian Foster, Derek
Campbell-Savours, Dale Foulkes, George
Canavan, Dennis Fraser, J. (Lamb'th, N'w'd)
Cant, R. B. Freeson, Rt Hon Reginald
Carter-Jones, Lewis Garrett, John (Norwich S)
Cartwright, John Garrett, W. E. (Wallsend)
Clark, Dr David (S Shields) George, Bruce
Clarke.Thomas (C'b'dge, A'rie) Gilbert, Rt Hon Dr John
Cocks, Rt Hon M. (B'stol S) Ginsburg, David
Coleman, Donald Golding, John
Conlan, Bernard Gourlay, Harry
Cook, Robin F, Graham, Ted
Cowans, Harry Grant, John (Islington C)
Craigen, J. M. (G'gow, M'hill) Grimond, Rt Hon J.
Crawshaw, Richard Hamilton, James (Bothwell)
Crowther, Stan Hamilton, W. W. (C'tral Fife)
Cryer, Bob Hardy, Peter
Harrison, Rt Hon Walter Penhaligon, David
Hart, Rt Hon Dame Judith Pitt, William Henry
Hattersley, Rt Hon Roy Powell, Raymond (Ogmore)
Haynes, Frank Prescott, John
Healey, Rt Hon Denis Price, C. (Lewisham W)
Heffer, Eric S. Race, Reg
Hogg, N. (E Dunb't'nshire) Rees, Rt Hon M (Leeds S)
Holland, S. (L'b'th, Vauxh'll) Roberts, Albert (Normanton)
Home Robertson, John Roberts, Ernest (Hackney N)
Homewood, William Roberts, Gwilym (Cannock)
Hooley, Frank Rodgers, Rt Hon William
Horam, John Rooker, J. W.
Howells, Geraint Roper, John
Hoyle, Douglas Ross, Ernest (Dundee West)
Huckfield, Les Ross, Stephen (Isle of Wight)
Hughes, Mark (Durham) Rowlands, Ted
Hughes, Robert (Aberdeen N) Ryman, John
Hughes, Roy (Newport) Sandelson, Neville
Hughes, Simon (Bermondsey) Sever, John
Jay, Rt Hon Douglas Sheerman, Barry
John, Brynmor Shore, Rt Hon Peter
Johnson, James (Hull West) Silkin, Rt Hon J. (Deptford)
Johnson, Walter (Derby S) Silkin, Rt Hon S. C (Dulwich)
Jones, Barry (East Flint) Silverman, Julius
Kaufman, Rt Hon Gerald Skinner, Dennis
Kilfedder, James A. Smith, Cyril (Rochdale)
Kilroy-Silk, Robert Smith, Rt Hon J. (N Lanark)
Lamond, James Snape, Peter
Leadbitter, Ted Soley, Clive
Leighton, Ronald Spearing, Nigel
Lestor, Miss Joan Spriggs, Leslie
Litherland, Robert Stallard, A. W.
Lofthouse, Geoffrey Steel, Rt Hon David
Lyon, Alexander (York) Stoddart, David
Lyons, Edward (Bradf'd W) Stott, Roger
Mabon, Rt Hon Dr J. Dickson Strang, Gavin
McCartney, Hugh Straw, Jack
McElhone, Mrs Helen Summerskill, Hon Dr Shirley
McGuire, Michael (Ince) Taylor, Mrs Ann (Bolton W)
McKelvey, William Thomas, Dafydd (Merioneth)
MacKenzie, Rt Hon Gregor Thomas, Jeffrey (Abertillery)
McNamara, Kevin Thomas, Dr H.(Carmarthen)
McTaggart, Robert Thome, Stan (Preston South)
McWilliam, John Tinn, James
Magee, Bryan Torney, Tom
Marks, Kenneth Varley, Rt Hon Eric G.
Marshall, D (G'gow S'ton) Wainwright, B.(Dearne V)
Marshall, Dr Edmund (Goolo) Wainwright, H. (Colne V)
Marshall, Jim (Leicester S) Wardell, Gareth
Martin, M (G'gow S'burn) Weetch, Ken
Mason, Rt Hon Roy Wellbeloved, James
Maynard, Miss Joan Welsh, Michael
Meacher, Michael White, Frank R.
Mikardo, Ian White, J. (G'gow Pollok)
Millan, Rt Hon Bruce Whitehead, Phillip
Mitchell, Austin (Grimsby) Whitlock, William
Mitchell, R. C. (Soton Itchen) Wigley, Dafydd
Morris, Rt Hon A. (W'shawe) Willey, Rt Hon Frederick
Morris, Rt Hon C. (O'shaw) Williams, Rt Hon A. (S'sea W)
Morris, Rt Hon J. (Aberavon) Williams, Rt Hon Mrs(Crosby)
Mulley, Rt Hon Frederick Wilson, Gordon (Dundee E)
Newens, Stanley Wilson, Rt Hon Sir H.(H'ton)
Oakes, Rt Hon Gordon Wilson, William (C'try SE)
O'Brien, Oswald (Darlington) Winnick, David
O'Halloran, Michael Woodall, Alec
O'Neill, Martin Woolmer, Kenneth
Orme, Rt Hon Stanley Wrigglesworth, Ian
Palmer, Arthur Young, David (Bolton E)
Park, George
Parker, John Tellers for the Ayes:
Parry, Robert Mr. George Morton and
Pavitt, Laurie Mr. Allen McKay.
Pendry, Tom
Aitken, Jonathan Arnold, Tom
Alexander, Richard Aspinwall, Jack
Alison, Rt Hon Michael Atkins, Rt Hon H.(S'thorne)
Amery, Rt Hon Julian Atkinson, David (B'm'th.E)
Ancram, Michael Baker, Kenneth (St.M'bone)
Baker, Nicholas (N Dorset) Gilmour, Rt Hon Sir Ian
Banks, Robert Glyn, Dr Alan
Beaumont-Dark, Anthony Goodhart, Sir Philip
Bendall, Vivian Goodhew, Sir Victor
Benyon, Thomas (A'don) Goodlad, Alastair
Benyon, W. (Buckingham) Gorst, John
Berry, Hon Anthony Gow, Ian
Best, Keith Gower, Sir Raymond
Bevan, David Gilroy Grant, Sir Anthony
Biffen, Rt Hon John Gray, Rt Hon Hamish
Biggs-Davison, Sir John Greenway, Harry
Blackburn, John Grieve, Percy
Blaker, Peter Griffiths, E. (B'y St. Edm'ds)
Body, Richard Griffiths, Peter (Portsm'th N)
Bonsor, Sir Nicholas Grist, Ian
Boscawen, Hon Robert Grylls, Michael
Bottomley, Peter (W'wich W) Gummer, John Selwyn
Bowden, Andrew Hamilton, Hon A.
Boyson, Dr Rhodes Hamilton, Michael (Salisbury)
Braine, Sir Bernard Hampson, Dr Keith
Bright, Graham Hannam, John
Brinton, Tim Haselhurst, Alan
Brittan, Rt. Hon. Leon Havers, Rt Hon Sir Michael
Brooke, Hon Peter Hawkins, Sir Paul
Brotherton, Michael Hawksley, Warren
Brown, Michael(Brigg & Sc'n) Hayhoe, Barney
Browne, John (Winchester) Henderson, Barry
Bruce-Gardyne, John Heseltine, Rt Hon Michael
Bryan, Sir Paul Hicks, Robert
Buchanan-Smith, Rt. Hon. A. Higgins, Rt Hon Terence L.
Buck, Antony Hill, James
Budgen, Nick Hogg, Hon Douglas (Gr'th'm)
Burden, Sir Frederick Holland, Philip (Carlton)
Butcher, John Hooson, Tom
Carlisle, John (Luton West) Hordern, Peter
Carlisle, Kenneth (Lincoln) Howe, Rt Hon Sir Geoffrey
Carlisle, Rt Hon M. (R'c'n) Howell, Rt Hon D. (G'Idf'd)
Chalker, Mrs. Lynda Howell, Ralph (N Norfolk)
Channon, Rt. Hon. Paul Hunt, David (Wirral)
Chapman, Sydney Hunt, John (Ravensbourne)
Churchill, W. S. Irvine, RtHon Bryant Godman
Clark, Hon A. (Plym'th, S'n) Irving, Charles (Cheltenham)
Clark, Sir W. (Croydon S) Jenkin, Rt Hon Patrick
Clarke, Kenneth (Rushcliffe) Jessel, Toby
Clegg, Sir Walter Jopling, Rt Hon Michael
Cockeram, Eric Joseph, Rt Hon Sir Keith
Colvin, Michael Kaberry, Sir Donald
Cormack, Patrick Kellett-Bowman, Mrs Elaine
Corrie, John Kershaw, Sir Anthony
Costain, Sir Albert Kimball, Sir Marcus
Crouch, David King, Rt Hon Tom
Dickens, Geoffrey Kitson, Sir Timothy
Dorrell, Stephen Knight, Mrs Jill
Douglas-Hamilton, Lord J. Knox, David
Dover, Denshore Lang, Ian
du Cann, Rt Hon Edward Langford-Holt, Sir John
Dunn, Robert (Dartford) Latham, Michael
Durant, Tony Lawson, Rt Hon Nigel
Dykes, Hugh Lee, John
Edwards, Rt Hon N. (P'broke) Le Merchant, Spencer
Eggar, Tim Lennox-Boyd, Hon Mark
Emery, Sir Peter Lester, Jim (Beeston)
Eyre, Reginald Lloyd, Ian (Havant & W'loo)
Fairbairn, Nicholas Lloyd, Peter (Fareham)
Fairgrieve, Sir Russell Loveridge, John
Faith, Mrs Sheila Luce, Richard
Farr, John Lyell, Nicholas
Fell, Sir Anthony Macfarlane, Neil
Fenner, Mrs Peggy MacGregor, John
Finsberg, Geoffrey MacKay, John (Argyll)
Fisher, Sir Nigel Macmillan, Rt Hon M.
Fletcher, A. (Ed'nb'gh N) McNair-Wilson, M. (N'bury)
Fletcher-Cooke, Sir Charles McNair-Wilson, P. (New F'st)
Forman, Nigel McQuarrie, Albert
Fraser, Rt Hon Sir Hugh Madel, David
Fraser, Peter (South Angus) Major, John
Fry, Peter Marland, Paul
Gardiner, George (Reigate) Marlow, Antony
Gardner, Sir Edward Marshall, Michael (Arundel)
Garel-Jones, Tristan Marten, Rt Hon Neil
Mates, Michael Shaw, Giles (Pudsey)
Maude, Rt Hon Sir Angus Shaw, Sir Michael (Scarb')
Mawby, Ray Shelton, William (Streatham)
Mawhinney, Dr Brian Shepherd, Colin (Hereford)
Maxwell-Hyslop, Robin Shepherd, Richard
Mayhew, Patrick Silvester, Fred
Mellor, David Sims, Roger
Meyer, Sir Anthony Skeet, T. H. H.
Miller, Hal (B'grove) Smith, Tim (Beaconsfield)
Mills, Iain (Meriden) Speed, Keith
Mills, Sir Peter (West Devon) Speller, Tony
Miscampbell, Norman Spence, John
Mitchell, David (Basingstoke) Spicer, Jim (West Dorset)
Moate, Roger Spicer, Michael (S Worcs)
Monro, Sir Hector Sproat, Iain
Montgomery, Fergus Squire, Robin
Moore, John Stainton, Keith
Morris, M. (N'hampton S) Stanbrook, Ivor
Morrison, Hon C. (Devizes) Stanley, John
Morrison, Hon P. (Chester) Steen, Anthony
Mudd, David Stevens, Martin
Murphy, Christopher Stewart, A (E Renfrewshire)
Myles, David Stewart, Ian (Hitchin)
Neale, Gerrard Stokes, John
Needham, Richard Stradling Thomas, J.
Nelson, Anthony Tapsell, Peter
Neubert, Michael Taylor, Teddy (S'end E)
Newton, Tony Tebbit, Rt Hon Norman
Normanton, Tom Temple-Morris, Peter
Onslow, Cranley Thomas, Rt Hon Peter
Oppenheim, Rt Hon Mrs S. Thompson, Donald
Osborn, John Thorne, Neil (Word South)
Page, John (Harrow, West) Thornton, Malcolm
Page, Richard (SW Herts) Townend, John (Bridlington)
Parkinson, Rt Hon Cecil Townsend, Cyril D, (B'heath)
Patten, Christopher (Bath) van Straubenzee, Sir W.
Pattie, Geoffrey Vaughan, Dr Gerard
Pawsey, James Viggers, Peter
Percival, Sir Ian Waddington, David
Peyton, Rt Hon John Waldegrave, Hon William
Pink, R. Bonner Walker, Rt Hon P.(W'cester)
Pollock, Alexander Walker, B. (Perth)
Porter, Barry Walker-Smith, Rt Hon Sir D.
Prentice, Rt Hon Reg Wall, Sir Patrick
Price, Sir David (Eastleigh) Waller, Gary
Proctor, K. Harvey Walters, Dennis
Pym, Rt Hon Francis Ward, John
Raison, Rt Hon Timothy Watson, John
Rathbone, Tim Wells, Bowen
Renton, Tim Wells, John (Maidstone)
Rhodes James, Robert Wheeler, John
Rhys Williams, Sir Brandon Whitney, Raymond
Ridley, Hon Nicholas Wickenden, Keith
Ridsdale, Sir Julian Williams, D.(Montgomery)
Rippon, Rt Hon Geoffrey Wolfson, Mark
Roberts, Wyn (Conway) Young, Sir George (Acton)
Rossi, Hugh Younger, Rt Hon George
Rost, Peter
Royle, Sir Anthony Tellers for the Noes:
Sainsbury, Hon Timothy Mr. Carol Mather and
St. John-Stevas, Rt Hon N. Mr. John Cope.

Question accordingly negatived.

It being after Seven o'clock, MR. DEPUTY SPEAKER proceeded, pursuant to the Order [16 FEBRUARY] and the Resolution this day, to put forthwith the Questions necessary for the disposal of the business to be concluded at Seven o'clock.

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