HL Deb 11 December 1912 vol 13 cc160-1

Read 3a, with the Amendments.


My Lords, in the exceptional circumstances connected with electrical wiring and fitting, the House of Commons Committee, which was presided over by Sir Henry Kimber, passed Clause 83 of this Bill. This clause has been considerably altered by the Committee of your Lordships' House presided over by the Duke of Wellington. The Corporation of Sheffield do not desire at this moment to have the matter debated in your Lordships' House, but they wish to give notice that they will use their best endeavours to persuade the House of Commons to reinstate the clause in its original form and send it back to this House. I make this statement because I think it is only right that your Lordships should have notice that the Corporation of Sheffield are not satisfied with the way in which this clause has been dealt with by the Committee of your Lordships' House.


My Lords, I am glad, in view of the circumstances, that the noble Lord has taken the course he has of giving your Lordships notice that while the promoters accept the Bill in a technical sense now, they do not accept it as final, and that if they can persuade the other House to disagree with your Lordships' Committee they will endeavour to do so. That being the case I will not to-day go into the merits of the question. But I should like to state that the clause in question as the Bill leaves this House is in the form of the model clause of your Lordships' House. Personally I think the decision of your Lordships' Committee was a right one—it certainly was not an extreme one; and if the other House do disagree with your Lordships' Committee in the Amendments, your Lordships will understand that this is a model clause which has been amended slightly this session but amended only with the object of making its original meaning perfectly clear.


I would point out, in view of what the noble Earl the Lord Chairman has stated, that there are, in the opinion of the Corporation of Sheffield, special circumstances in connection with their case.


It would, of course, be inconvenient at such a moment to go into the merits of this case, with which I cannot pretend to be fully conversant. At the same time I think it is only right to say that the matter to which the noble Lord opposite has called attention concerns one of the model clauses of your Lordships' House, and though we shall treat with profound respect the action taken in the other House we cannot hold out any hope that we shall vary our decision unless the House think right to do so.


My Lords, I am sorry that the Sheffield Corporation have decided to take the course indicated by the noble Lord opposite. I certainly had hoped, after the matter had been so much discussed, that the Sheffield Corporation would have been satisfied and would have allowed matters to take their course. They are, however, quite within their rights in taking the line they propose to take; but I should like to say that the manufacturers of the country will take a very strong line in the opposite direction, and I hope your Lordships will retain this clause, which you have on more than one occasion adopted.


There are some further Amendments to this Bill, but it is not necessary to state them to the House. They are purely drafting Amendments, and do not touch the point to which attention has been drawn this evening.

Moved, That the further Amendments be agreed to.—(The Earl of Donoughmore.)

On Question, Amendments made.

Bill passed, and returned to the Commons.