Mr.Deputy Speaker (Sir Alan Haselhurst)
Order. Perhaps the hon. Member for Wakefield (Mr. Hinchliffe) will wait for a moment before presenting his petition. Hon. Members who are not staying to hear it should please leave quickly and quietly. Thank you.
§ Mr. Hinchliffe
I wish to present a petition signed by my constituent Mr. Bernard Calvert of Linton road, Eastmoor, Wakefield. The petition contains only his signature, but he has expressed a desire for it to be formally presented to the House and I am happy to oblige.
The petition states that, as a citizen of the United Kingdom he has not been consulted in any referendum on our association with Europe since 1975 when a referendum was held to ascertain whether the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland would remain in the European Economic Community, which was known as the Common Market. He says that that has happened notwithstanding what he suggests is the progressive surrender of our national sovereignty since then.
The petition states:
Wherefore your Petitioner prays that your honourable House shall urge the Government to:
- 1. introduce legislation providing for a referendum on the United Kingdom's membership of the Common Market:
- 2. call a Speaker's Conference, to comprise members of the House, academics and others, to decide the formulation of the question to be put to the people of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland at this Referendum:
- 3. bear the cost of the aforementioned conference and Referendum through Her Majesty's Treasury and
- 4. make arrangements for the allocation of equal air time on television, radio and other media to supporters of either side of the question that shall be determined by the aforementioned Conference.
And your Petitioner, as in duty bound, will ever pray, for the continual well being of the House of Commons, the historical defender or our liberties.
§ To lie upon the Table.