HL Deb 14 December 1967 vol 287 cc1255-6

3.27 p.m.


My Lords, I beg to move that this Bill be recommitted to a Committee of the whole House on Monday next. The purpose of this Motion is to enable a second Committee stage to be taken on Monday next instead of the Report stage, which is due to be taken on that day. As your Lordships will be aware, many of the Amendments which were moved in Committee were withdrawn as a result of assurances given by the Government. I have since had an opportunity of considering carefully the points raised and have tabled Amendments to meet some of them. If this Motion is agreed to it will give the House an opportunity of considering these Amendments, and of course others that may be tabled, in Committee, where the rules of procedure allow more detailed discussion than on Report. It will also allow the Report stage to fulfil its proper function, which is to review and perfect Amendments made in Committee. I beg to move.

Moved, That the Bill be recommitted to a Committee of the Whole House.—(Lord Brown.)


My Lords, we on this side of the House welcome the noble Lord's proposal. I am sure that this is the right way to deal with this Bill. It is a complicated Bill. There is a lot to be done to it, and I am sure that we shall get a much better result from this course.


My Lords, I entirely support what the noble Earl, Lord St. Aldwyn, has just said.


My Lords, may I ask my noble friend whether he can help us at this stage? Can he tell us as to what hour we shall be sitting on Monday or which clause we shall be reaching, because the two are not necessarily the same, and it is of help to those of us who have to stay?


My Lords, I understand that we have been allotted, if I may put it that way, a provisional allowance of four hours. It is difficult for me to say precisely at what point we shall begin our proceedings, but I imagine that it will be soon after Question Time. This, therefore, may take us to somewhere about seven or eight o'clock. I am unable to say whether we shall require the whole of this time, because I am aware that there are a number of Amendments in draft form. Certainly some additional Amendments will be tabled. If these come in in sufficient volume I am quite sure we shall require the whole time. In fact we may not get through the whole of the Committee stage.


My Lords, it would be helpful if the noble Lord could say beyond which point it is not intended to go. I understood that there was a suggestion that we should not go beyond a certain clause. I do not know whether the noble Lord can enlighen the House on this.


My Lords, we are getting into the sort of detail which we usually discuss through the usual channels. I understand that in this situation noble Lords always seek for certainty, but the noble Earl is aware how difficult it is to attain it. But certainly the convenience of the Committee of the House will be very much borne in mind, and that also takes into account those who serve us so faithfully.

On Question, Motion agreed to.