HL Deb 11 December 1917 vol 27 c85

My Lords, before the business of the House begins this afternoon I should like to make a personal explanation. Last Thursday I am afraid I inadvertently caused your Lordships' House very great inconvenience, and I hope your Lordships will believe that I was not guilty of any intentional disrespect. What happened was this. On Tuesday last I had a Question on the Paper regarding Persian affairs, and at the instance of the noble Earl the Leader of the House, who said he had had insufficient notice to give a reply on that day, I postponed the Question, and after consideration I intended to put it down for Thursday of this week. I cannot have made myself clear at the Table, and apparently it was put down for last Thursday. Meanwhile I had left for Scotland, and I was quite unaware of the mistake until Friday morning, when, of course, it was too late to rectify it. I only wish to say that I am extremely sorry if any negligence on my part should have caused your Lordships inconvenience, and more, particularly to the noble Earl the Leader of the House, whose time is already so much occupied by the responsibilities of his office. At the same time I hope your Lordships will believe that it was no intentional discourtesy that led to the occurrence, which has greatly annoyed me.


My Lords, I am sorry I did not hear the whole of my noble friend's remarks, but what I did hear was sufficient to give me an idea of the general character of his observations, and I think I need say no more than this, that on my own behalf I fully accept—and I am sure I may also accept on behalf of your Lordships—his very courteous explanation of the incident that happened on Thursday last.