§ THE MARQUESS OF SALISBURY
My Lords, before the House adjourns I am rather anxious to ask the noble Earl two questions. The first has reference to the Housing (Scotland) Bill which stands upon 1102 the Paper but in regard to which, owing to the modification in the Government policy in respect of housing, there is a rumour that it will not be proceeded with. For the convenience of noble Lords sitting in all parts of the House I shall be glad to know whether there is any intention of proceeding with that Bill— I will not ask the Government to give me a final answer now— next week. That is the first question.
The other question is with regard to the Trusts (Scotland) Bill. That Bill passed through Committee this afternoon, and I apologise to your Lordships for not being in my place at the time. I want to ask the noble Earl, or the noble Lord who rexpresents the Scottish Office in this House, whether he is not of opinion that this Bill is being passed through Parliament with rather undue haste. I do not pretend to know anything about it, but it is a very complicated Bill and unless it is an absolutely agreed Bill it would be rather a strong measure, considering that it was only read a second time yesterday and passed through the Committee stage to-day, to proceed with it further until an opportunity has been afforded for those who are interested in the question to make representations, should they see fit. I must apologise to the noble Earl for not having given him notice of those questions. I thought I ought, at the earliest possible moment, to say that we hoped there, would be no undue pressure until we were certain that noble Lords who were interested in Scottish law questions had been satisfied that the Bill was quite non-controversial.
THE EARL OF CRAWFORD
The Trust (Scotland) Bill is, of course, in the main, a Consolidation Bill.
THE EARL OF CRAWFORD
In the main. There are certainly four or five amendments of the law which no doubt your Lordships would desire to consider. The Bill now stands on the Paper for Third Reading on Tuesday, but I propose, after what Lord Salisbury has said, to put that off till Wednesday, which at any rate will give Peers the opportunity of talking the matter over when they meet again on Tuesday next, and, if they so agree, we will take the Bill on Wednesday. If not, we can 1103 discuss the question of any further postponement which may be necessary. It is no doubt a long Bill. It is one of those Bills which have originated in this House, and I suppose it is desired to get it to the House of Commons as soon as convenient.
As regards the Housing (Scotland) Bill-my noble friend, Lord Stanmore, has put that down for Second Reading on Thursday of next week, so that the question does not press immediately between to-day and our next meeting. My noble friend hopes that 1104 on Tuesday next, or at all events on Wednesday, he will be in a position to make a general announcement on the subject. I suggest, therefore, that the Bill should remain down for the date at which it now stands— namely, this day week. I hope that during the first or second sittings of next week we shall be able to announce to your Lordships any change of policy, should any be decided upon.
§ House adjourned at twenty minutes past five o'clock.