HL Deb 20 June 1939 vol 113 cc552-3

4.24 p.m.


My Lords, I have really no observations to make on the clear statement about Tientsin which has been made by the noble Viscount, the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, further than to express the hope that His Majesty's Government will continue to take the firm attitude which they have been taking in desiring to separate the local incident which has occurred in Tientsin from the wider questions of the whole relation of our interests in China with which it has been, apparently, endeavoured to complicate the situation. I really rise to ask an entirely different Question of the noble Earl who leads the House, and that is to inquire whether it is the intention of His Majesty's Government to move an Address to His Majesty the King on his return in order that we may express our appreciation of the marvellous success which has attended Their Majesties' visit to Canada and the United States.

4.26 p.m.


My Lords, I am grateful to the noble Marquess opposite for giving me an opportunity of informing the House of the measures which His Majesty's Government propose to ask Parliament to take in giving a welcome to Their Majesties on their return to this country. I propose to move a loyal Address when the House assembles on Thursday next, and it is proposed that both Houses of Parliament shall adjourn in order that they may take a personal part in the welcome to Their Majesties as they pass from Waterloo Station to Buckingham Palace. It is proposed that the pavement on either side of the road facing New Palace Yard shall be reserved for members of both Houses of Parliament, and that we should assemble there to give Their Majesties welcome. The time at which the House will adjourn for that purpose will, of course, depend on the time Their Majesties arrive at Southampton, but if it is in accordance with the programme—and I have no reason to think that it will be otherwise—it is proposed that this House shall adjourn at a quarter past five o'clock. Their Majesties will probably pass somewhere about 5.35 p.m. Then we shall reassemble at six o'clock to carry on with our business. As the House will meet that day at the normal time of a quarter past four, I shall be able to inform your Lordships of the time when the adjournment will take place, because by then we shall know of Their Majesties' arrival at Southampton. So far as I have had reports up to date, the "Empress of Britain" is steaming at a lower speed than that of which she is capable because she has passed the ice zone and is already well on her way back to this country.