§ Order of the Day for the Third Reading read.
§ THE LORD CHANCELLOR (VISCOUNT SIMON)
My Lords, in asking your Lordships to give a Third Reading to this Bill I ought to say that it has been found necessary to put on the Paper some Amendments, which I shall ask the House to make after the Motion for the Third Reading has been carried. I am well aware that your Lordships do not favour that course except when it is really necessary, and except when the Amendments proposed are of a very limited character. The particular difficulty in this case I will explain when I move the Amendments, and I hope that your Lordships may be prepared in the circumstances to make those Amendments. I beg to move that the Bill be now read a third time.
§ Moved, That the Bill be now read 3a.—(The Lord Chancellor.)
§ On Question, Bill read 3a, with the Amendments.
An Act to provide for the disclaimer of leases comprising land of which possession has been taken in the exercise of emergency powers, for the reduction in certain cases of the rent and other periodical sums payable under or in connexion with leases comprising such land, for requiring the continuance, after possession of such land has been taken as aforesaid, of certain services provided by the landlord, and for purposes connected with the matters aforesaid.
§ THE LORD CHANCELLOR
My Lords, there are on the Paper Amendments in my name which I wish to make in this Bill. In Clause 2 I desire, in effect 351 to leave out most of the clause and to substitute different words which appear on the Paper in a proposed new clause. The point is this. Clause 2 of the Bill made provision to protect a tenant's fixtures if he took advantage of the Bill and gave notice of disclaimer. Under the ordinary law a tenant may be entitled to remove what are called his fixtures, but he must do so during the currency of the lease. Once the lease has come to an end, generally speaking, he would not be entitled afterwards to visit the premises and take away things which would otherwise be removable. The Bill, as your Lordships know, is one which gives the tenant in certain cases the right to give notice of disclaimer, and the lease would then come to a sudden end before he could remove his fixtures.
My attention has been called to the fact that really a provision of this kind is needed for other cases where the premises are requisitioned, and not only in cases where the tenant of the requisitioned premises gives notice of disclaimer. There are cases where premises are requisitioned and the requisition has the effect of ousting the tenant. The tenant then could not get back and would not be able to exercise his ordinary right to remove fixtures or arrange as to how they should be dealt with or paid for. What is needed therefore is a clause wider than Clause 2 in the Bill, and that is the effect of the new clause which I propose to move. If that new clause is agreed to, the result will be that the title would be rather narrower than it ought to be because the title now reads "An Act to provide for the disclaimer of leases" and so forth. If this new clause is added words of this sort should be added to the title "for the adjustment of the rights of the parties to such leases with respect to certain buildings and fixtures." I have explained the need for the new provision and I would add that the urgency for it only recently came to notice. I could give illustrations which I think would satisfy everybody about the hardships that might be inflicted on tenants unless this further provision is made. I beg to move the Amendment in the title which I have indicated.
Page 1, after ("powers") insert ("for the adjustment of the rights of the parties to such leases with respect to certain buildings and fixtures").—(The Lord Chancellor.)
§ On Question, Amendment agreed to.
§ Clause 2 [Effect of notice of disclaimer]:
§ THE LORD CHANCELLOR
My Lords, I beg to move the next two Amendments together, to leave out sub section (3) and paragraph (b) in sub section (4) of Clause 2.
Page 3, line 13, leave out subsection (3).
Page 3, line 42, leave out paragraph (b).—(The Lord Chancellor.)
§ On Question, Amendments agreed to.
§ THE LORD CHANCELLOR moved, after Clause 6, to insert the following new clause:
§ Adjustment of rights as to certain buildings and fixtures.
§ 7.—(1) Where possession of any land comprised in a lease has been taken on behalf of His Majesty in the exercise of emergency powers and—
- (a) the tenant has a right, as between him and his landlord, to remove, either during the currency of the lease or after the termination thereof, any building or fixtures annexed to the land; and
- (b) the lease comes to an end (whether as the result of disclaimer under this Act or otherwise) before possession of the land so taken has been given up, or within such a short period thereafter as not to give the tenant a reasonable opportunity for exercising his right;
§ (2) The foregoing subsection shall not apply to any building or fixture which is annexed to a holding within the meaning of the Agricultural Holdings Act 1923, and is a building or fixture to which Section twenty-two of that Act applies, but that section shall have effect, in any such case as is mentioned in the last foregoing subsection, as if the reference in that section to a reasonable time after the termination of the tenancy were construed as a reference to a reasonable time after possession of the land taken in the exercise of emergency powers has been given up.
§ (3) The tenant of any land of which possession has been taken as aforesaid may recover from the person entitled to the compensation payable in respect of the land under paragraph (a) or paragraph (b) of subsection (1) of Section two of the Compensation (Defence) Act, 1939, such part (if any) of the compensation payable under the said paragraph (a) as may be agreed by the tenant and the said person, or in default of agreement, as may be determined by the Court, to be attributable to the use during any period after the termination of the lease of any building or fixtures 353 removable by the tenant, and such part of the compensation payable under the said paragraph (b) as may be so agreed or determined to be attributable to damage to any such building or fixtures.
§ (4) Where the tenant of any land is entitled under the foregoing provisions of this section to remove any building or fixtures within a reasonable time after possession of the land is given up as aforesaid, the person who, when possession is so given up, is entitled to occupy the land, shall, if the tenant has served on him a notice requesting to be informed when possession is so given up arid specifying the address to which the information is to be sent, serve a notice accordingly giving that information, and the period within which the tenant may remove the building or fixtures shall extend to a reasonable time after the service of the notice by the said person.
§ (5) This section shall extend to any case where the lease has come to an end before the date of the passing of this Act but possession of the land comprised therein is still retained as aforesaid at the said date, and shall, in relation to any such base, be deemed to have been in force at the termination thereof.
§ The noble and learned Viscount said: My Lords, this is the Amendment which is the cause of the formal changes which your Lordships have already made in the Bill. I beg to move that the new clause, as printed on the Paper, be inserted.
Page 7, line 47, after Clause 6, insert the said new clause.—(The Lord Chancellor.)
§ LORD NATHAN
My Lords, although as the noble and learned Viscount on the Woolsack has said, it is unusual for Amendments to be moved at this stage, it is well that this omission has been noticed and steps taken to rectify it. There can be no doubt that this new clause is a necessary and useful addition to the Bill.
§ THE MARQUESS OF SALISBURY
My Lords, I should be sorry if any misunderstanding took place about this matter of procedure. There is nothing in the least unusual in introducing Amendments after Third Reading. It is part of our ordinary procedure. What is essential, as the noble and learned Viscount knows and has taken care of, is that Notice should be given of the Amendments. You cannot move an Amendment after Third Reading unless it is on the Paper. That is absolutely laid down in our proceedings and that is the only limitation. I have known numbers of Amendments passed after Third Reading. It is a very usual procedure.
§ On Question, Amendment agreed to.354
§ THE LORD CHANCELLOR
My Lords, before moving that the Bill do now pass, I have it in command from His Majesty to signify to the House that His Majesty, having been informed of the purport of the Landlord and Tenant (Requisitioned Land) Bill, gives his consent, as far as His Majesty's interest is concerned on behalf of the Crown and on behalf of the Duchy of Cornwall, that the House may do therein as they shall think fit.
§ Moved, That the Bill do now pass.—(The Lord Chancellor.)
§ On Question, Bill passed, and returned to the Commons.