HL Deb 15 December 1938 vol 111 cc628-9

Order of the Day for the consideration of Commons Message of yesterday read.


My Lords, I beg to move the Motion which stands in my name on the Order Paper. In the House of Commons on July 7, 1938, a Motion was debated on the Second Reading of the West Yorkshire Gas Bill that there should be an instruction to the Committee to insert in the Bill "further and better protection of highway authorities than is afforded by the Gas Works Clauses Act, 1847." It was urged that the relevant provisions of this Act and of other similar Acts relating to the breaking up of streets by statutory undertakers for purposes of their undertakings are no longer appropriate owing to the technical advances made in the construction of highways. The matter was not pressed to a Division in view of an undertaking that other Government Departments concerned would be consulted. I may mention that this matter was also considered by a Select Committee of this House on the West Yorkshire Gas Bill. As a result of the preliminary consultation it was decided to move for the appointment of a Joint Committee of both Houses to consider the subject, and following upon further consultations the terms of reference have been agreed with the Departments concerned. I beg to move.

Moved, That this House do concur in the Resolution communicated by the Comrnons—namely: That it is expedient that a Joint Committee of Lords and Commons be appointed to consider those sections of the Gasworks Clauses Act, 1847, the Waterworks Clauses Act, 1847, the Electricity (Supply) Acts, 1882 to 1936, and the Schedule to the Electric Lighting (Clauses) Act, 1899, which relate to the breaking up of streets for the purpose of laying pipes and other works, and to report what, if any, modifications of these provisions should be made to meet modern conditions with a view to their incorporation in future Bills and Orders promoted by statutory undertakers.—(The Earl of Onslow.)

On Question, motion agreed to, and a Message ordered to be sent to the Commons to acquaint them therewith.