§ Order of the Day for the Second Reading read.1064
THE EARL OF MALMESBURY
My Lords, I do not desire to detain you for more than a very few minutes while I explain the object of this Bill. It is introduced in consequence of a measure now, on the Statute Book—the Shops (Early Closing) Act (1920)—and it is very innocent in character, very brief, and perfectly innocuous in every way. It covers a matter which is for the convenience of the public, and I hope that your Lordships will not consider that I am making too heavy a demand upon you if I ask you to give the Bill not only a Second Reading but to pass it through all its stages. It is merely intended to permit the sale of chocolate, sweets and mineral waters until a later hour than their sale is now permitted by the existing law, and I believe it will be warmly welcomed by the public as getting rid of another of those restrictive regulations from which they have suffered.
§ Moved, That the Bill be now read 2a.— (The Earl of Malmesbury.)
THE PARLIAMENTARY SECRETARY OF THE MINISTRY OF HEALTH (THE EARL OF ONSLOW)
My Lords, this Bill was introduced into the House of Commons in pursuance of an arrangement effected in connection with. the Expiring Laws Continuance Bill. An attempt was made to give these facilities in that measure, but it was found that it was not a convenient course, and the Amendment was withdrawn, on an understanding that the Bill should take its place, and that the Government would do what it could to further the passage of that Bill into law during the present session. The Bill, as it comes before your Lordships' House, is a little extended in comparison with what it was when originally considered, but nevertheless the Government hope that your Lordships will pass the Bill, as it will meet a great desire among certain parts of the population for the extension of facilities to acquire sweets and similar articles. I therefore hope that your Lordships will agree to my noble friend's proposal.
§ On Question, Bill read 2a.
§ Then (Standing Order No. XXXIX having been suspended), Bill committed to a Committee of the Whole House forthwith: House in Committee accordingly: Bill reported without amendment, and read 3a, and passed.