My Lords, at a convenient moment after 3.30 this afternoon my noble friend Lady Young will, with the leave of the House, repeat in the form of a Statement the Answer which has been given in another place to a Private Notice Question on the Falklands hospital fire.
1153 My noble friend Lady Young will, again with the leave of the House, then repeat a Statement which is to be made in another place on the European Council Meeting on 9th—10th April.
My Lords, with the leave of the House, I should like in the normal way to say a brief word about the timing of the two short debates this afternoon standing in the names of the noble Lord, Lord Hunter of Newington, and my noble friend Lord Gainford.
It is normal, in the case of short debates, to suggest the maximum length of time for speeches. The principle which is adopted is that the mover shall be entitled to approximately 15 minutes, and that the Minister should rise to reply no later than 20 minutes before the scheduled end of the debate. On that basis I should be grateful if other speakers in the debate of the noble Lord, Lord Hunter of Newington, would limit their speeches to a maximum of 12 minutes. I should say that the limit is calculated to allow for the fact that the noble Baroness, Lady Gaitskell, will be speaking after my noble friend Lady Cox, although her name does not appear on the list of speakers.
I am afraid that the application of the usual principles to the debate of my noble friend Lord Gainford would suggest that other speakers in that debate should limit—if that is the correct word—their speeches to a maximum of 38 minutes each! I should therefore suggest that they limit their speeches to no more than the 15 minutes customarily permitted to the mover of a short debate.