§ Order of the Day for the Second Reading read.
§ THE PARLIAMENTARY UNDER-SECRETARY OF STATE FOR INDIA AND BURMA (THE DUKE OF DEVONSHIRE)
My Lords, I beg to move that this Bill be read a second time. The object of the Bill is to confirm three Provisional Orders made by the Secretary of State under the Marriages Validity (Provisional Orders) Act, 1905 and 1924. I do not know if any of your Lordships saw the play that appeared some years ago called When We Were Married. It dealt with three very highly respected aldermen of a very respectable Yorkshire 923 city who found that, owing to some irregularity, none of them were, in fact, married, although highly respected City Fathers, with all the complications that would naturally ensue. This is a purely technical matter. The doubt as to the validity of the marriages arises from the fact that they were, in two cases, solemnised by a minister who was, in fact, through a pure technicality, not an authorised person. In the third case the church in which the marriage was solemnised had not, at that time, been licensed by the Bishop, following the union of two benefices and the closing of the duplicate marriage register formerly in use at the church in question. Your Lordships will appreciate, therefore, that this is an entirely formal measure designed to clear up a matter where doubt has arisen, and I hope your Lordships will agree to the Second Reading of the Bill. All three Orders have been duly advertised in accordance with the provisions of the Marriages Validity (Provisional Orders) Act, and in no case has any objection been received.
§ Moved, That the Bill be now read 2a.—(The Duke of Devonshire.)
§ On Question, Bill read 2a, and committed