HL Deb 11 December 1945 vol 138 cc545-6

4.12 p.m.

VISCOUNT ADDISON, My Lords, I beg to move the Motion that stands in my name.

Moved, That Standing Orders Nos. XXI and XXXIX be considered in order to their being suspended until the House adjourn for the Recess at Christmas, and that, until that date, Government business have, except with the consent of the Government; precedence over other Notices arid Orders of the Day—(Viscount Addison.)

On Question, Motion agreed to, and ordered accordingly.


My Lords, in connexion with the business of the House, I. must apologize to your Lordships for an unfortunate delay that apparently occurred in the forwarding of the Building Materials and Housing Bill, for the First Reading of which we had a special sitting on Friday last. The reason, for which I am glad to say the officers of this House are not in any way responsible, was that there was considerable delay in receiving the print of the Bill. In the circumstances the time between the First Reading and the Second Reading has been unduly short. I am very sorry that this has happened, but it is no fault of ours. In the circumstances, perhaps I may suggest to your Lordships that if you feel you would like further time, we might adopt the same procedure as was adopted in another case a short time ago—give the Bill a formal Second Reading this afternoon and then, when we have the Motion that the House shall resolve itself into Committee on the Bill, we can have a general discussion on the Bill before taking the Committee stage.


My Lords, there has been the possibility of inconvenience over this. Indeed, not only was the Bill not forwarded, but it was not available in the Vote Office, I understand, even yesterday afternoon. On the ether hand, I am not sure that the course the Leader of the House proposes will be convenient. The Bill may require a good deal of consideration in Committee; and there are certain points which I think the House would like to have elucidated on Second Reading. Probably a number of noble Lords have made such study as has been possible on the Bill. As the alternative before us is not one of postponing the Second Reading and postponing the Committee stage, but merely of engaging in a debate next Thursday, when we do not meet until 4 o'clock and when we should have to take what is virtually a Second Reading debate, and follow that up with the Committee stage, I think on the whole it will be more convenient to take the Second Reading to-day, elucidate all these matters and get answers from the Government on various points which noble Lords may want to raise, and no doubt we shall be given full time on the Committee stage for any Amendments that are put down. In all the circumstances, I think that will be most for the convenience of the House.


My suggestion was made entirely to meet the convenience of the House. I am quite willing to accept the suggestion made by the noble Lord.