HL Deb 01 June 1948 vol 156 cc15-6

2.35 p.m.


My Lords, before we start the business on the Order Paper, perhaps I may be permitted to lay before your Lordships the proposals we have to make, after consultation through the usual channels, for the Committee stage of the Criminal Justice Bill which comes before us this afternoon. We quite understand that it would be inconvenient to ask the House, at such short notice, to sit after dinner tonight and, in the circumstances, we propose to adjourn at 7 or 7.30 this evening the debate upon Lord Llewellin's Amendment to Clause 1 of the Bill, which deals with the suspension of the death penalty for murder and upon which many of your Lordships have notified your wish to speak. To-morrow, Wednesday, we shall ask your Lordships to meet at 2 p.m., instead of at the usual hour of 2.30. It is not anticipated that the debate on Lord Vansittart's Motion will take long. After that, we shall resume the debate on the Amendment to Clause 1 of the Criminal Justice Bill, and we hope that the Division will be taken not later than 5 o'clock. We shall then proceed with the other Amendments on the Marshalled List. It is rather a formidable list, and I am afraid that it will be necessary to ask your Lordships to sit after dinner to continue the Committee stage on both to-morrow (Wednesday) and Thursday nights. It may possibly be necessary also to sit after dinner on Monday next, in order to conclude the Committee stage of the Bill in accordance with our agreed programme. But, as to that, we shall be better able to judge when we see what stage we have reached on Thursday night.