HC Deb 15 March 2002 vol 381 cc1169-70

'(1) This Act binds the Crown, except that nothing in this Act affects Her Majesty in her private capacity.

(2) Byelaws made under section 6 may apply to Crown land only if the appropriate authority (within the meaning of section 101(11) of the National Parks and Access to the Countryside Act (1949 c. 97)) consents.

(3) Crown land means land an interest in which—

  1. (a) belongs to Her Majesty in the right of the Crown or the Duchy of Lancaster;
  2. (b) belongs to the Duchy of Cornwall;
  3. (c) belongs to a government department; or
  4. (d) is held in trust for Her Majesty for the purposes of a government department.

(4) The Crown is not criminally liable as a result of any provision made by or under this Act.

(5) Subsection (4) does not affect the application of any provision made by or under this Act in relation to persons in the public service of the Crown.'—[Mr. Meacher.]

Brought up, and read the First time.

12.30 pm
Mr. Meacher

I beg to move, That the clause be read a Second time.

It is customary for a Bill to be specific about the extent to which it applies to the Crown, and the new clause provides the necessary explanation. It indicates that the Bill shall bind the Crown but that the Crown should not be criminally liable, and that includes liability under byelaws, which may only be made on Crown land with the consent of the appropriate authority. It defines what constitutes Crown land, using a definition akin to that in section 67 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981. The new clause deals with an important aspect of the Bill because most of the sea bed in territorial waters belongs to the Crown, and both Departments and persons holding office under the Crown are defined as competent marine authorities in the amended Bill.

Question put and agreed to.

Clause read a Second time, and added to the Bill.

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