HC Deb 02 July 1984 vol 63 c13
28. Mr. Canavan

asked the Lord Privy Seal whether he will announce the proposed dates of the summer parliamentary Adjournment.

Mr. Biffen

The timing of the summer recess is dependent upon the satisfactory progress of parliamentary business. I shall be making an announcement at the appropriate time.

Mr. Canavan

Will the Leader of the House consider the possibility of the House rising a little earlier this year, even if it means coming back a little earlier, bearing in mind that the Scottish school holidays have already started and may in some cases be almost over by the time that Parliament goes into recess?

Is it not an absolute insult to family life that the dates of the parliamentary recess are treated almost like a state secret and seem to be more influenced by the grouse-shooting season than by children's holidays?

Mr. Biffen

When this House was dominated by the land-owning classes before 1914, it usually sat well beyond the opening of the grouse season in August.

The question of Scottish holidays is, of course, one of those taken into account by anyone determining the Adjournment date. I shall do my best to avoid the precedent created in recent times by the Labour Government in 1966, when we sat until 12 August.

Dr. Mawhinney

Does my right hon. Friend accept that most Conservative Members would also prefer the House to rise at a date closer to the time when our children leave school than when the grouse leave the moors?

Mr. Biffen

I quite understand that point.