§ Read 3a, with the Amendments.
THE CHAIRMAN OF COMMITTEES (LORD MERTHYR)
My Lords, on behalf of the Promoters of this Bill I desire now to move three Amendments to it. I am in a position to assure your Lordships that these Amendments are not ones of substance, that they are all drafting Amendments and that they comply with the Standing Orders. In those circumstances, I do not anticipate that your Lordships would wish to have details of them, though they are available if required. I now beg to move that these three Amendments be agreed to.
§ LORD SILKIN
My Lords, I do not know whether or not this is normal practice but it is the first time in my experience that the House has been asked to agree to Amendments which are not before it and which they have not seen. I am quite prepared to accept that, from the point of view of the noble Lord the Lord Chairman of Committees, they are drafting Amendments; but I have had some experience of alleged drafting Amendments. I have sometimes found that they are rather more than drafting. I feel that the House is entitled to look at them and to satisfy itself that these are purely drafting Amendments. I should be grateful if the noble Lord could tell us whether this is in accordance with the practice of the House.
THE CHAIRMAN OF COMMITTEES
My Lords, in answer to the noble Lord, Lord Silkin, it is in accordance with the practice of the House, although admittedly it is not a common occurence, that Amendments to a Private Bill should be moved on Third Reading. I can assure the noble Lord that in my own experience it has happened within the past few years. If, however, there is the slightest doubt about this matter I do not hesitate to say that I will not move this Motion to-day, so that the House will have an opportunity of seeing the Amendments; and I will circulate them to the noble Lord. In those circumstances, I do not move the Amendments.
§ VISCOUNT ALEXANDER OF HILLSBOROUGH
My Lords, the Bill having been read a third time, is it still open for Amendments to be put forward again?