§ 2.58 p.m.
§ The Minister of State, Scottish Office (Lord Glenarthur)
My Lords. I beg to move that the Commons reason and amendments be now considered.
§ Moved, That the Commons reason and amendments be now considered.—(Lord Glenarthur.)
§ On Question, Motion agreed to.
§ COMMONS REASON FOR DISAGREEING TO A LORDS AMENDMENT, COMMONS AMENDMENT TO A LORDS AMENDMENT AND COMMONS AMENDMENT IN LIEU OF A LORDS AMENDMENT
§ [References are to Bill (98) as first printed by the Lords.]
§ [Commons amendments etc. are printed in italics.]
§ LORDS AMENDMENT
§ 1 After Clause 19, insert the following new clause:
§ ("Functions of local authorities with respect to persons who are homeless or threatened with homelessness.
(2) In section 1(2) (homeless persons and persons threatened with homelessness) after paragraph (c) there shall be inserted the following paragraph—
(d) it does not provide the ordinary facilities of a residence and it is inappropriate for his needs, or it is unreasonable for him to continue to live in it.
(3) In section 4 (duties of housing authorities to homeless persons and persons threatened with homelessness) after subsection (6) there shall be inserted the following subsection—
(7) Where a local authority has a duty under subsections (4) and (5) above "accommodation" shall be defined as either—
The Commons disagreed to the above amendment for the following reason:
2 Because the Amendment would give rise to problems of interpretation and would impose excessive additional duties on local authorities.
§ MOTION MOVED IN CONSIDERATION OF COMMONS REASON
§ 2A The Lord Tordoff rose to move, That this House do not insist on their Amendment No. 1 to which the Commons disagreed for the Reason numbered 2 but propose the following amendment in lieu thereof—
§ After Clause 19, insert the following new clause:
§ ("Functions of local authorities with respect to persons who are homeless or threatened with homelessness.
In section 1(2) (homeless persons and persons threatened with homelessness) after paragraph (c) there shall be inserted the following paragraph—
(d) it is overcrowded as defined in section 89 of the Housing (Scotland) Act 1966 and may endanger the health of the occupants.
In section 4 (duties of housing authorities to homeless persons and persons threatened with homelessness) after subsection (6) there shall be inserted the following subsection—
(7) Where a local authority has a duty under subsections (4) and (5) above "accommodation" shall be defined as accommodation that shall not be overcrowded as defined in section 89 of the Housing (Scotland) Act 1966 and which does not pose a threat to the health of the occupants.".")
§ Lord Tordoff
My Lords, I beg to move that this House do not insist on their Amendment No. 1 to which the Commons disagreed for the Reason numbered 2 but propose the said amendment in lieu thereof. The amendment stands in the name of my noble friend Lord Mackie of Benshie, who offers his regrets to the House that he cannot be here as he had to attend a family funeral. I am sure that your Lordships will understand. In moving—
§ Lord Glenarthur
My Lords, if your Lordships will forgive me for a moment, it may be for the convenience of the House if I indicate at this point that in the light of events the Government are disposed to accept Amendment No. 2A on the Marshalled List, which the noble Lord, Lord Tordoff, is moving on behalf of his noble friend.
§ Lord Tordoff
My Lords, I wish that my noble friend could be here to relish this himself. I am most grateful to the Minister. That will save the House a considerable amount of time.
I think the Government should be credited with taking a rational view of the relationship between the amendment which is on the Marshalled List today and what happened in your Lordships' House last night. There is no doubt that the principle lying behind this amendment is precisely the same as that which lay behind the amendment to the Housing and Planning Bill which your Lordships carried last night. Were this amendment to have been defeated this afternoon, the Scottish legislation would have been set in concrete and there would have been no opportunity for the Government to have further thoughts about the matter.
I hope this means that the Government are going to take note of what was said yesterday. I do not intend 718 to rehearse any of those arguments in the light of what has been said. I merely thank the Government for the statement which has been made, and I beg formally to move this amendment.
Moved, That this House do not insist on their Amendment No. 1 to which the Commons disagreed for the Reason numbered 2 but propose the said amendment in lieu thereof.—(Lord Tordoff.)
§ Lord Campbell of Alloway
My Lords, although the sincerity of the purpose of this amendment is wholly accepted, it is an avowedly interventionist amendment in the affairs of local government and, even more, is based on the misconception which permeated the proceedings last night on the effect of Puhlhofer. The amendment is open to objection on the ground that the import of the statutory minimum standard on overcrowding, which could well become the norm, would preclude the exercise of any more generous approach, and the lot of those living in substandard accommodation could well be worsened rather than improved.
The import of the other concept of endangering health will give rise assuredly to conflicts of evidence between the medical experts and other experts. At the end of the day, the local authority will have to resolve those questions and those decisions of the local authority will not be subject to judicial review. In the present situation under Puhlhofer, the noble Baroness, Lady David, appeared with the greatest respect to her—she is not in her place, but perhaps I may say this—to be labouring under a misapprehension that the judgment in Puhlhofer did a wrong and did a violence to the intention of Parliament. With respect to her, such is not the case. It is a satisfactory judgment, if one accepts that this is a matter which lies within the judgment and discretion of a local authority and it is not appropriate for the judgment and discretion of a local authority to be subject to judicial review, save on bad faith, ultra vires, procedural irregularity or manifest absurdity.
The decision in Puhlhofer, which was mentioned by the noble Lord as the basis on which your Lordships should accept this amendment, in view of the fact that it was accepted, as I respectfully suggest, under a misapprehension last night, is simply this. Your Lordships' Appellate Committee held quite simply that accommodation must be capable of accommodating the applicant and all other persons living with him. Then the committee went on to hold that there are no other rules—none—which ordain. It is a question of fact for the local authority in every case, so that in some circumstances overcrowding or danger to health—the matters with which this amendment is concerned—might disqualify and in other cases they might not. In this context, the Appellate Committee of your Lordships' House rejected the concept that the statutory definition of overcrowding had no relevance and ought to be disregarded.
Furthermore, as noble Lords may appreciate, the trigger clause which introduces these provisions—"shall have regard to"—by judicial interpretation lacks legal efficacy as affording any right of appeal or any access to judicial review, save on the Wednesbury principles to which I have referred. It was held in Puhlhofer—and rightly held, your Lordships 719 may well think, bearing in mind the attitude on all sides of the House when the functions of local authorities came up for consideration, albeit in other contexts—that it is not appropriate that the judgment and discretion of local authorities in the discharge of these and indeed other statutory duties should be monitored by the courts. Those were the words used by the noble and learned Lord, Lord Brightman, and indeed they were wholly apt.
Furthermore, there is another problem in that Puhlhofer is a decision of general application in the realm of public administrative law as affecting the exercise of discretion by local authorities in the discharge of their duties. It would hardly be appropriate—indeed, it would be premature; even perhaps not necessary—to seek to erode the reasoning of that important decision, so to speak, piecemeal. If this amendment were to be carried, in some cases—just some, I agree—harsher standards would apply than those which obtain now, and in the result, although such is not the intention, I know, the lot of those living in substandard accommodation could well be worsened rather than improved. This amendment, if carried in these circumstances, could well create difficulties and indeed anomalies rather than resolve them. I know that such is not the intention. It is for those reasons that, with respect, although I understand fully and sympathise with the objective of the amendment, I oppose it.
§ Lord Denning
My Lords, I should like to say a few words. I have not had an opportunity to speak before on these matters which have arisen under both the English Acts and the Scottish Acts, but as Master of the Rolls I was involved in nearly all the cases arising under the Housing (Homeless Persons) Act 1977 and I can tell your Lordships of the great difficulty of interpretation which has arisen because of the wording of it, the ambiguity and so on.
I agree with the House of Commons in rejecting the amendment and I should prefer to restore altogether the decision of the House of Lords in the Puhlhofer case. I am afraid that most of those cases which came before us were sponsored by an organisation called Shelter. Let me give your Lordships two or three examples of those cases.
First, an Italian couple, aged 21 and 23, came into Gatwick with their baby children. Now that we are in the Common Market, there is freedom of movement. People can come into Gatwick if they please, without getting permission; and so they did. They were in Naples in not very good accommodation and could not get work there. They had a relative living near Gatwick who said, "Come over to us", which they did. They came over to Gatwick. They were with the relative for a few weeks and then the relative said to them, "I have not got room for you any more. You must go." They said, "That's all right. We will go to the local council. They are under a duty to provide homes for us. We are now homeless."
That was the point which came before the court over which I presided, and the court held that in leaving Italy, as they did, where they had a home and coming over to England, as they thought, to put upon 720 us they had rendered themselves intentionally homeless. The local authority took the view, "We have hundreds of young married couples on our waiting lists, with two small babies" or whatever it may be. "Are we to give these people from Italy priority over our own couples here?" So in that case the Court of Appeal did not allow the couple to obtain accommodation here against the will of the local authority.
The next case was from Bangladesh. There was a man who had been in England for some years and had his work here and had settled here. He used to go home for holidays to Bangladesh, where he had four children by his wife. "Oh", he said, "I'll bring them over to England". And so he did. He brought his wife and four babies over to England and put them up with a relative for a few weeks. But then the relative said, "I haven't room for you any more; out you go". There it was. What was the local authority to do? In that case, the Court of Appeal held that they were intentionally homeless in leaving Bangladesh as they did. But I am afraid that the Court of Appeal decision was reversed by the House of Lords, and so in a way they managed to come here. Hillingdon is close to the airport and Hillingdon people had to find accommodation for them.
Then there is the last case, which came to the House of Lords—the Puhlhofer case. It is awfully difficult to spell. Let us consider the facts of the case. It involved a young man of 17 or just coming up to 18. He had been over to America for a time and then he came back, unemployed and homeless. Hillingdon council found him room in a guesthouse. In that guesthouse was a young woman of about his age who had a baby already. As you can imagine, the couple joined forces, and before long she was pregnant again with another child and they moved in together, the guesthouse being paid for by the local authority. So there they were—this boy of 17 or 18, the girl about the same age, and two small babies in one room with which they had been provided at the beginning by the local authority. They had no work, of course; they were living on state benefits and the like.
Hillingdon council was faced with a problem—a young couple and two babies in one room. They were in awfully crowded accommodation and things were very difficult for them, but they were managing. Hillingdon council said, "You have accommodation. We cannot put you in another house and put you above our young married couples here who are waiting. If you have one child you will not get a house here. You have to have two; everyone knows that". But at all events there they were—a young couple of 17 or 18 years of age, unemployed, with two babies in one room.
The local authority looked at the position as best it could and, interpreting the Act, said, "They have accommodation. They are not homeless". The case was taken—I am afraid that Shelter takes up all these cases—first to the judge, who said that this was not proper accommodation for them. The Court of Appeal said that it was, so the case went to the House of Lords. This is the case that has given all the trouble—the Puhlhofer case in the House of Lords.
I should like to say from a distance, because I am not sitting there any more, that the judgment of the 721 House of Lords sitting judicially was completely right. They said that it was a question of fact for the local authority, that it had to decide, whether or not it was a question of accommodation. Looking at this particular case, it said, "This young couple is accommodated. We really cannot buy up other accommodation and put them into a hotel or anything like that. They really must carry on as they are". The local authority said that that was the case. The House of Lords said, "In questions of this kind do not interfere with the local authority. Local authorities have the big problem imposed on them by statute of housing the homeless on one side and dealing with all the priority needs of our young couples on the other. For goodness sake, do not interfere with the local authority's decision on a question of fact".
That is the first thing the House of Lords said. The other thing they said was, "Do not extend this interference by the courts too much". In recent times we have developed extraordinarily a system called judicial review where we review the decisions of local authorities and others if they have gone wrong in law or have been totally unreasonable. The House of Lords said, "For goodness sake, do not carry this system of review so far that you are challenging the decisions of local authorities all the time; please restrain the system of judicial review". That is what the House of Lords said.
I have said so much because this is an important question of whether or not Parliament should uphold the unanimous decision by the House of Lords on Puhlhofer. I was not able to speak in the earlier debates but I entirely agree with the House of Commons and say, "Do not reverse that case, but let it stand as law. Do not go tinkering with it by making amendments because you will get into all sorts of trouble. I am afraid that if the next amendment is accepted you will have lots more trouble; but that is only my word. I understand that for reasons of practical politics the Government are prepared to accept it.
§ 3.15 p.m.
§ Lord Tordoff
My Lords, perhaps the noble and learned Lord will give way. It has been an interesting tour d'horizon. It is perhaps a pity that the noble and learned Lord did not give us the benefit of his experience at an earlier stage of the Bill. With all due respect to the noble and learned Lord, it seems to me that his speech and to a certain extent the speech of the noble Lord, Lord Campbell of Alloway, were speeches against the 1977 Act. Indeed, some of the references of the noble and learned Lord snowed that that Act could be made to work for those people who were, at least in his opinion, trying to abuse the Act.
I do not think that we are at that position today. The noble Lord, Lord Glenarthur, wishes to say a few words on the intervention by his noble friend; but I ask the noble and learned Lord, Lord Denning, to accept that this amendment may be nothing more than a device to keep the options open for the Government to have another look at the workings of the 1977 Act in relation to this Bill and the Bill that was before your Lordships yesterday. It is on the basis that I formally move what I said before, and I hope that the Government can work on it.
§ Lord Denning
My Lords, I am sorry that I was not here at the earlier discussions. There are occasions when one cannot be here, so I am a little late. I have said what I have said only because I see difficulties ahead.
§ Lord Glenarthur
My Lords, I am grateful to both my noble friend Lord Campbell of Alloway and the noble and learned Lord, Lord Denning, for their remarks. I could equally have deployed many of the arguments that were deployed by my noble friend Lord Campbell had these been different. On this occasion I hope that I am trying to be helpful in view of the fact that your Lordships' House expressed a view yesterday. The Government were unable to agree to Amendment No. 1 on the Marshalled List for the reasons set out—that it would give rise to problems of interpretation and would impose excessive additional duties on local authorities. I accept that the amendment of the noble Lord, Lord Mackie of Benshie, which has been moved by the noble Lord, Lord Tordoff, is intended to meet most of the objections that were raised to the earlier version. I am also aware of the strong feelings of your Lordships which were evident in our earlier discussions and indeed in the amendment that was carried last night.
The Government's position is well known. We believe that the amendment is premature. However, I accept that on the whole your Lordships feel that we should act now to pre-empt possible adverse consequences of the decision taken by the Law Lords rather than wait to see if the decision has the effect feared and then respond to it. I am grateful to the noble Lord, Lord Mackie of Benshie, for his willingness to bring forward an alternative amendment to try to meet some of our concerns about his earlier version. I have to say that there remain one or two areas where we fear that his new amendment might still give rise to difficulties of interpretation. I believe that to be the same point made by my noble friend Lord Campbell. For example, as he said, there is no definition of the phrase,
may endanger the health of the occupants".However, I believe that the spirit of the amendment is clear, and that is why the Government are prepared to accept the alternative version.
My noble friend raised the matter of judicial review and I accept that this amendment could open local authorities to additional grounds for judicial review, but I believe it is less unsatisfactory in this respect than the earlier amendment to the Bill which was carried. In indicating that the Government will not oppose this, I recognise the clearly expressed wish of the House that the Act should be amended now; but if problems emerge we of course reserve the right to return to the matter at some future point.
I could go on to explain in detail how we propose to monitor the possible effects of this change. However, may I simply say that we will monitor the position, as we undertook to do earlier, through the regular quarterly statistical returns submitted to the Scottish Development Department by district and island authorities, which are known as the homeless household case returns. In addition, we are about to launch a research project which will look at differences between local authorities in Scotland in the way they 723 operate the homeless persons Act. The second stage of the research will make contact with a sample of applicants to establish what their experience of the homeless persons Act has been and to assess how the system has met their needs.
Finally, as we said we would, we are in addition prepared to consider any evidence which Shelter or other organisations might provide. However, I stress that if it emerges from this study that the amendment which the noble Lord moved is giving rise to technical difficulties of the sort which my noble friend Lord Campbell of Alloway explained, we might return with alternative proposals at some point in the future.
§ Lord Carmichael of Kelvingrove
My Lords, I thank the noble Lord, Lord Glenarthur, for his remarks and I think we all accept the fact that we are still groping with a great many uncertainties. The noble and learned Lord, Lord Denning, and the noble Lord, Lord Campbell, pointed to some of the problems.
As this is a Scottish Bill perhaps I should add that, far from it merely being Shelter, as suggested by the noble and learned Lord, Lord Denning, I can assure the House that the Episcopal Church of Scotland, the archdiocese of the Roman Catholic Church in Glasgow and the Scottish Council for Single Homeless, with their very great experience and following the decision in the Puhlhofer case, are extremely worried. We all know that there can be abuses of the definition of "homelessness". The noble and learned Lord, Lord Denning, gave some very hard cases. I know that the bodies I have mentioned who are very much involved in the Scottish scene can give equally hard cases to show how the Act operates badly for them. Therefore, I am very pleased that the Minister has accepted this amendment.
There is only one question that I wish to put to him. I have a copy of the department's homeless household case returns, compiled from form HL1 (revised). I urge the Minister to have a look at that form. I have considered it very closely and people who know about housing statistics have also looked at it. It appears to me, at least—unless the Minister can correct me—that it is almost impossible from that form to obtain any idea of the actual status of accommodation. It is a small but important point. It would be terrible if we had three months of these forms and no real results at the end of the exercise. Therefore, I ask the Minister to consider that point.
Having said that, and realising the difficulties, we are very grateful for what we have obtained from the Minister. I support him in his acceptance of this amendment.
§ Lord Tordoff
My Lords, I am grateful to all noble Lords who have spoken this afternoon and particularly to the noble Lord the Minister. We have made tremendous progress this week, through the activities of this House, on the subject of homelessness. It is an important subject. After being unfed, being unsheltered is the worst thing that can happen to a human being.
724 We on these Benches view the 1977 Act with particular pride because it was introduced originally by my honourable friend the Member for the Isle of Wight, but feel it was being undermined by the statement handed down by the noble and learned Lord, Lord Brightman, and others. It was to prevent the original meaning of that Act being changed—the original intention of Parliament—that these amendments have been brought forward. Of course they are likely to be imperfect. All amendments from Opposition Benches are imperfect in the eyes of parliamentary draftsmen and Ministers' advisers. However, the message we always wanted to get across, and which I believe we now have got across, is that it is the principle we are worried about. No one is more delighted than I am, with the possible exception of my noble friend Lord Mackie of Benshie, that the principle has now been accepted by the Government.
§ On Question, Motion agreed to.
§ Lord Aberdare
My Lords, there is a misprint in Amendment No. 3. In the first line the figure "3" should be deleted.
§ LORDS AMENDMENT
3 Schedule 1, page 21, line 37, at end insert—
( ) where a landlord so mentioned has at no time let (or had available for letting) more than 250 dwellings; or".
The Commons agree to the above amendment with the following amendment:
§ 4 Line 3, leave out ("250") and insert ("100").
§ Lord Glenarthur
My Lords, I beg to move that this House do agree with the Commons in their Amendment No. 4 to the Lords Amendment No. 3.
The Government felt that the limit of 250 houses was too high. That figure was agreed at an earlier stage by your Lordships. We had to balance the possible difficulties faced by smaller associations in dealing with sales against the understandable desire of their tenants to exercise their right to buy. We came to the view that it was only in the early stages of an association's formation, or where an association chose to remain at a very low level of stock, that there would be difficulties posed by the right to buy. Therefore, we proposed an amendment in the other place which reduced the limit from 250 houses to 100.
We think that is a reasonable compromise and I understand that the Scottish Federation of Housing Associations is of a similar view. The effect of this change is to extend the right to buy to about a further 1,700 people. Associations with a stock of fewer than 100 houses tend to be very small and the 22 such associations in total hold 400 houses.
On that basis I commend to the House the Commons Amendment No. 4 to the Lords Amendment No. 3. I beg to move.
Moved, That this House do agree with the Commons in the said amendment—(Lord Glenarthur.)
§ Lord Carmichael of Kelvingrove
My Lords, I think we should be grateful for at least being given the 100 houses owned by a housing association, although we would much rather have had the figure of 250 dwellings included in the Bill.
725 I am sure that the Minister will have read the Committee stage of the Bill which took place during the earlier part of the summer. At that time all the arguments were put forward about the efficiency of 250 against 100. I felt quite elated when I received a reply on 10th June from the noble Lord, Lord Gray of Contin, who was at that time most efficiently carrying out his duties on the Government Front Bench. It is a mystery why he is not still on the Front Bench, but that is no disrespect to the extremely able noble Lord, Lord Glenarthur.
In his letter the noble Lord, Lord Gray, implied total acceptance of the figure of 250 houses. Referring to the amendment proposed by the Government he said:The amendment we propose therefore provides that once an association has entered the right to buy, by its stock achieving 250 dwellings let, or available for letting, it remains in the right, even if its stock subsequently reduces".That is quite fair, because it would be difficult if the figure went above 250; the association would then come out. The noble Lord added:I am sure you will see this as within the spirit of the original amendment but tempered by practical considerations".I agree with that but I am rather sad that the practical considerations have meant such a drastic reduction—from 250 to 100.
However, as the Minister said, it seems to affect rather fewer associations than perhaps we originally thought, and since I have had little correspondence—certainly not very angry correspondence—from the associations in Scotland, I take the opportunity of welcoming at least what we have and hope that later, when the housing associations become rather more widespread and perhaps bigger, we may look at this figure again.
§ On Question, Motion agreed to.
§ 3.30 p.m.
§ LORDS AMENDMENT
5 Schedule 21, leave out from beginning to end of line 12 on page 22 and insert
("is, by virtue of section 360(1) of the Income and Corporation Taxes Act 1970 (special exemptions for charities), exempt from tax; or")
The Commons disagreed to the above amendment but proposed the following amendment in lieu thereof:
§ 6 Page 22, line 1, leave out ("3 October 1980") and insert ("14 November 1985")
§ Lord Glenarthur
My Lords, I beg to move that this House do not insist on their Amendment No. 5 to which the Commons have disagreed and do not agree to the Commons Amendment No. 6 proposed in lieu thereof.
Moved, That this House do not insist on their Amendment No. 5 to which the Commons have disagreed and do agree to the Commons Amendment No. 6 in lieu thereof—(Lord Glenarthur).
§ The Deputy Speaker (The Earl of Listowel)
My Lords, I shall now call Amendment No. 6A in the name of the noble Earl, Lord Perth, as an amendment to Commons Amendment No. 6.
§ AS AN AMENDMENT TO COMMONS AMENDMENT NO. 6
§ 6A At end insert (", or from the date of first being registered by the Housing Corporation (whichever is the later,")726
§ The Earl of Perth
My Lords, I beg to move Amendment No. 6A which stands in my name and in the name of the noble Earl, Lord Selkirk. Perhaps I may go back a little in history. As soon as I learned that the amendment that we passed at Report stage on May 13th—which was a memorable day for me—had been amended in another place, I thought the right thing to do was to seek a compromise which still allowed new charitable housing associations to be set up in Scotland in the same way as they are in England and Wales, but only after November 1985, which is the date inserted by the other place. In other words, I am proposing an addition to the other amendment and not an alternative.
Having decided that it would be good to seek some way of reaching a compromise, I consulted the Public Bill Office and my amendment is due to the work done by the officials there. I gave them a general idea of what I wanted and they put it into terms. I am quite clear that without their help I should not have got it right—I am not even sure that the noble Earl, Lord Selkirk, would have got it right—and I want to thank them very much for their help. During the past several months, I have also had the opportunity of talking at great length on this matter with the noble Lord, Lord Glenarthur, and Mr. Michael Ancram. The noble Earl, Lord Selkirk, was with me on both occasions. I am sorry to tell your Lordships that we did not feel persuaded by what they wanted us to do and hence we tabled the amendment as you see it.
The amendment is very simple. It allows new charitable housing associations to be set up in Scotland in the future—that is, after November 1985—if the charities have been approved by the Housing Corporation and by the Inland Revenue. I feel very strongly that it is right that this should be allowed for the future in Scotland in exactly the same way as it is allowed in England and Wales or not exactly but nearly the same way, given that Scotland has a different form of charity law. However, the different form of charity law should not mean that in the future there cannot be charitable housing associations.
As your Lordships will have heard—I certainly have—the Government have objected to this amendment on several grounds. I shall mention only two of them. First, they say that it is not necessary because certain defined charitable categories have already been exempted and that ought to be enough. It is worth while recalling what was said in the debate at Report stage by the noble Lord, Lord Gray of Contin, which can be found at col. 1088:We are anxious to protect the legitimate interests of the charitable housing association and we believe that the Bill does so for the great majority".I emphasise the words "the great majority". In other words, in this statement the Government recognise that the measure would not cover all of them.
Their second argument is that it will cause a great deal of extra work to vet what will anyhow be few cases, because they have already said that what they are doing will cover the greater part. All I can say is that if there are very few cases—and I believe that is right—it will not mean a great deal of work. You cannot have it both ways. There are either a lot of cases and a lot of work or very few cases and little work. Frankly I do not think that argument is a good one.
727 I have been asked what type of charitable housing I have in mind for the future which is not covered by the existing exemptions. I do not know. I do not know what a philanthropist or philanthropists' group might wish to establish in the future in the way of charitable housing. But I know—and I stress this—that if somebody was considering making a gift for this charitable housing purpose and possibly seeking finance not only from the Housing Corporation but from private sources, and if he knew that therein lay the threat that the right to buy would be exercised after a period of time resulting in a considerable loss to his gift, he would be deterred from even considering it.
It is for that reason that we must try to work out something which, as I have said already, is an addition but not an alternative to the amendment of the other place. In this amendment I am seeking with the noble Earl, Lord Selkirk, and I hope with the support of your Lordships, to find something which will give Scotland a parallel very close to that pertaining in England and Wales and will ensure that if in the future someone wants to set up such a housing association he will be enabled to do so. 1 beg to move.
Moved, That this House do agree with Amendment No. 6A, as an amendment to Commons Amendment No. 6.—(The Earl of Perth.)
§ Lord Hughes
My Lords, I am sorry that the Minister seemed to indicate when moving the earlier Motion that he was not likely to accept this amendment. Let me say that I am very surprised at the Government's attitude. I regret to say that in Scotland the Labour Party generally and Labour-controlled authorities in particular were much slower than the Conservative Party to recognise the benefits of housing associations. It was due very much to Conservative government activities that the housing association movement in Scotland got off the ground. Today housing associations are not a matter for partisan argument in Scotland or anywhere else. Therefore it seems to me amazing that the party which did so much to create the opportunities in Scotland should apparently be setting its face against the creation of new charitable associations along the lines mentioned by the noble Earl, Lord Perth.
The noble Earl, Lord Perth, is not asking for a wide open door, because with this amendment there are two conditions which must be satisfied before this new charitable association is accepted. It has to be accepted by the Housing Corporation—that is the first vetting that has to take place—and, secondly, it has to be accepted as a genuine charitable organisation for Inland Revenue purposes. There is not to be a great mass of fly-by-nights coming in pretending to be charitable housing associations.
I beg the Minister to accept this very reasonable amendment. The only difference from what the Government are doing is that, in so far as they changed attitude, the first position was that any new associations set up after 1980 were not to get through. Then the Government gave way to the extent that they said that any set up before 14th November 1985 should get through. All that the noble Earl, Lord Perth, is asking is that genuine bodies set up after that 728 date should also be allowed to function. I strongly support what the noble Earl, Lord Perth, has said.
§ Baroness Carnegy of Lour
My Lords, two very delightful, very appealing speeches have just been made by two very experienced politicians, one noble Lord from the Cross-Benches and one from the Labour Benches. From what they have said, one would think that the proposal that is now being made to alter what the other place has said is really nothing—just a wee addition; that it is having very little effect on the people of Scotland and means very little to them.
The discussion on this part of the Bill, the two speeches that have just been made and the copious lobbying that has been going on among your Lordships in the past week or two, if not the past month or two, is, if I may say so, entirely from the point of view of charitable housing associations, the people who run them and the work they do. The wonderful work that the charitable housing associations in Scotland do has been pointed out. It has been demonstrated that they are somewhat different. As the noble Lord, Lord Hughes, has said, they came at an earlier stage. One notable difference is that there are far more general needs houses in Scottish housing associations than there are in England. As your Lordships will be aware, at present, we are discussing only general needs houses.
We have heard of the wonderful work that has been done in providing rented accommodation, and some tenants can buy houses at the valuer's price. It is being said: why should this wonderful work be wrecked by the Government when it is endorsed now by the other place, which wants the tenants of those ordinary needs houses of housing associations to have the right to buy? In this House, let us think of the tenants, the customers, for whom the housing associations exist. What about those tenants? The tenants of houses built for general needs by charitable housing associations cannot buy at a discount. The tenants of local authority houses can: they have the choice to buy their houses at a considerable discount. Local authority houses and charitable housing association houses are built with public money. A little private money goes into Scottish charitable housing associations. My information is that it is under 1 per cent. of the total, so that the total is 99 per cent. and that is the only difference.
Why should the tenants of charitable housing associations in Scotland be penalised when their houses are built by public money—they are to all intents and purposes public sector houses—and not be given the right to buy? It is about that that your Lordships must think. Of course rented accommodation is needed, and much more of it, in Scotland. The way to arrive at that, now that we have the right to buy local authority houses in Scotland, is a quite different mechanism. The situation for charitable housing associations has totally changed. The situation in Scotland is not the same as it is in England. We should be thinking of the customers, the people for whom these houses are built.
To hear the noble Lord, Lord Carmichael of Kelvingrove, say from the Opposition Front Bench on an earlier amendment that we must be grateful for 729 having got 150 more houses regarding which the tenants are precluded the right to buy seems to me the most extraordinary happening. I hope that we are going to uphold what the elected House has said on this matter, uphold its defence of the people who are the tenants of these housing associations and look to other ways of providing rented accommodation for people who need it in Scotland.
§ 3.45 p.m.
§ Lord Grimond
My Lords, I am drawn to my feet, if that is the right expression, by the extremely appealing speech of the noble Baroness to whom we have just listened. She spoke of the customers. I must say once again (because it has often been said before) that many of the customers in Scotland want rented accommodation. There is an enormous demand for rented accommodation. If we want a mobile labour force, we have to ensure that there is rented accommodation, or else people cannot move. The noble Baroness, I know, appreciates this, and indeed she mentioned it; but she said that the situation should be met in other ways.
It may be that there will be other ways of providing this accommodation, but at present one of the best ways is through the housing associations. To destroy that advantage which has proved so useful in Scotland would, I think, be a great mistake. I ask your Lordships to bear in mind that among the customers, and very prominent among them, are people who want houses to let and who cannot buy houses.
§ Lord Carmichael of Kelvingrove
My Lords, I should like to say a few words on this point. I am very aware of the importance attached to it by the noble Earls, Lord Perth and Lord Selkirk, and they have been very faithful in following their beliefs on the importance of charitable housing. In re-reading the debate, I was reminded of the fact that the noble Earl, Lord Perth, made a special journey on his birthday to be present for this series of amendments.
I fail to see how the Government can justify the case that they have put. It seems to be a very simple case which will affect a number of houses of a very special kind. Perhaps I may correct the noble Baroness, Lady Carnegy, when she said that I was enthusiastic about gaining another 150 houses. I think that she could not have been listening with her usual acuteness. In fact, I was lamenting the fact that under the amendment we had lost a total of 150. Originally in the small housing associations the number to allow for exemption from purchase was 250, and the Government tabled an amendment to make 100 exempt.
One of the important things about housing associations is the enthusiasm that they engender in an area and the fact that people give a great deal of time. That is one of the reasons that we felt that 250 houses represented about the right figure. With regard to 100 houses, the enthusiasm of the group trying to build the houses is important; and much more so, I suggest to the Minister, in the case of charitable houses.
One is aware of the enthusiasm of the people who are willing to raise the money to fund a charitable organisation, almost always for a special purpose. These people have a particular knowledge of the special needs of groups in the community and, 730 whatever their reason for deciding to help such a group, that help is given with great enthusiasm. It may be that for historical reasons they are anxious to preserve a small community. It may be that they wish to preserve particular types of houses or blocks of houses. We are getting that more and more in Scotland. I do not suggest that these are appropriate, but we are having conversions in our cities, especially in Glasgow, where some fine old buildings have been preserved and have been or are being successfully divided into flats.
I can foresee a charity coming along and saying that a building is particularly important; that it is an 18th century building and one that should be preserved. It may say that it can pre 12 or some other number of houses, and, "Let us raise the money and do so." I know that 12 houses would be exempt under the concession that the Minister has already made. There are many factories in Glasgow—there is one in Monklands Canal area now—which are likely to be converted. They will almost certainly have more than 100 flats. If that were done by a charity, the people who raised the money would rightly be annoyed if a few months after its own screening process, when it looks for the type of people that it wants in the houses who perhaps have a connection with the area, all its efforts and the money spent were nullified because the houses began to change hands and a different type of person came into them. They may be either upwardly or downwardly motivated. They would not be the people that those who spent their time and money starting a housing association wanted.
I hope that the Minister will be as generous with this amendment as he was with the first one, especially in view of the people who have spoken and who feel passionately about this matter.
The noble Lord, Lord Grimond, made an important point about rented accommodation. No matter how many houses are sold or how high the discount is, there will always be a need for rented housing in Scotland. I know that that is something about which the noble Earl, Lord Selkirk, is concerned. All of us who live in Scotland and see the mobility problems realise that rented housing is vital. Charitable associations, such as the New Lanark Housing Association, want to provide housing for rent for a particular type of person. I hope that the Minister will have those points in mind when he replies.
The Earl of Selkirk
My Lords, I should like to thank the noble Lord, Lord Carmichael, for what he said. There is and there will continue to be an enormous demand for rented houses in Scotland. The story of housing associations goes back 12 years. They were the result of an agreement between Mr. Crosland and Mrs. Thatcher that they would build up rented property through housing associations. It was a common policy. The Bill directly overrides that. The contract whereby a corporation let houses for rent to housing associations has been directly overriden by the Bill. The Bill makes it obligatory for housing associations to sell houses to people if they are asked to do so.
We are only asking for a small thing: that outside the limit there should be charitable housing associations 731 which will not have to sell houses. For some reason—and I cannot tell your Lordships why—a block has been put on charitable associations. Some of your Lordships may have seen the Prince of Wales on television last night. I feel great sympathy for the observations that he made.
Over the past 20 years we in Scotland have increased the number of our council houses by about 10 per cent. We have increased owner-occupation by some 30 per cent. That shows that the scheme is going extremely well, as it is at present. We have lost 75 per cent. of our private rented property. That must be made up somehow. At present, housing associations have 40,000 applications for houses. The Bill will reduce the number of houses available. That is serious.
I am only asking that rented property should be allowed to go on. It must be. This is an important period. Building societies have just been given wider powers. They will have £5 billion to spend on houses. Are we going to get that in Scotland or not?
The Government proposed to the Treasury, and succeeded in getting its agreement, that a charity could sell its houses below market price. It is generally regarded as a pretty definite rule that a charity does not sell below market price. They are allowed to do so. No charitable donor will put his money into a property which will possibly be sold at nearly half its market price. As long as that rule continues, no charitable money will come into housing.
I want the Government to collect as much of that money as possible. Building societies can perfectly well form charities. There is no reason why they should not. I believe that they will do so. I believe that this provision will result in a great loss to Scotland. My noble friend Lady Carnegy talked about the customers. Who are the customers? Where are the queues for houses? They are with local authorities and housing associations. There is no queue for owner-occupation. There are plenty of houses for people to buy.
I believe the idea in the Government's head is that everyone wants to own a house. They do, but not all will succeed in doing so, especially at the time when they want to. There will always be between 25 per cent. and 30 per cent. of the population which will not be able to do so. Those are the people whom we are seeking to provide for.
I do not know how many of your Lordships have seen housing associations in operation. In my opinion, they are doing a remarkable job. They tackle problems with originality. I know that in Glasgow and Edinburgh they have tackled the problem of the big stone houses built in about 1890. Local authorities have been afraid to make the change; but housing associations have adapted the houses to provide proper and good accommodation. That is a great achievement.
There is another even more important achievement. Housing associations have worked extremely closely with tenants and landlords. Their relationship has always been a great problem, but the housing associations have succeeded. They have set up tenants' committees which meet the managers. I believe that is of tremendous importance. I should like to see housing 732 associations increase rapidly and extensively. They can play a big part in Scotland's housing history.
I do not know how your Lordships regard housing. I think it is the basic social requirement. If you are not brought up in a proper house, especially in your early years, are you likely to be able to benefit from education or to have a healthy life? However, those matters are subordinate to the basic requirements of housing. I am asking for a very little, but I beg the noble Lord to agree to it.
§ 4 p.m.
§ Lord Glenarthur
My Lords, I pay tribute to the noble Earl, Lord Perth, and to my noble friend Lord Selkirk for their pursuit of the protection, as they see it, of housing associations. The noble Earl, Lord Perth, called this a simple amendment. I would say that it is really rather complicated. It is intended, as they have explained, to provide that the right to buy should not apply to new charitable housing associations which may form in Scotland. Indeed, I am grateful to the noble Earl and to my noble friend for giving me some idea in advance of the thinking that lies behind their approach.
I have to say that at first sight the amendment appears to be useful. It appears to be attractive. There are indeed many who are attracted to it. I am far from convinced, however, that the amendment is necessary in order to achieve the encouragement of philanthropic donations, such as those suggested by the noble Earl, Lord Perth, to housing associations. I respect of course the fervent way in which the noble Earl supports them. Nor am I convinced that it is fair to the tenants of such associations that they should be denied the right to buy when their neighbours in what may be very similar houses but belonging to a different kind of housing association will have that right.
At one time, in the early months of the progress of this Bill, there was real cause for concern about the compatibility of charitable tax status of housing associations in Scotland and the right to buy. I must stress to the noble Lord, Lord Hughes, who brought this into his remarks, that the Inland Revenue has considered its position carefully over many months. We have heard that the right to buy will have no effect on the charitable status of new associations. As that is so, there is no reason to treat them differently from other new associations. The tax advantages which accrue to charities and charitable associations will be available to any charitable housing association in Scotland, and, perhaps even more importantly, from the point of view of the philanthropist, the tax advantages to the donor will be equally available. In other words, where the donor gives money over a period under a covenant, then the tax that he has paid will be available to the receiving association.
But the noble Earl and my noble friend have suggested that philanthropists may not give their money to associations if they think that tenants of those associations will be able to buy houses at substantial discount. We have to remember that in considering this matter there are other exemptions—indeed, the noble Earl referred to this—from the right to buy than those of the association itself. For example, if a philanthropist 733 gives his money for the building of sheltered housing or housing adapted for the disabled, then those houses are in themselves exempt from the right to buy. The Bill, and the Act it amends, the Tenants' Rights, Etc. (Scotland) Act 1980, contain a variety of exemptions which we loosely describe as exemptions for special needs housing. These also include houses in small groups for people who are mentally or physically handicapped; those who have recently come out of prison or other institutions; those suffering from addictions; or young people leaving the care of local authorities.
In addition, the Secretary of State has power to add further classes to these exemptions. So many, if not most, of the houses which charitable housing associations would be interested in providing will be exempt from the right to buy. If there was a risk that any association might have other activities, it would of course be open to the donor to specify that his money be used only for purposes beyond the right to buy such as these exempt houses or for the provision of common facilities.
The noble Lord, Lord Carmichael, raised the question of new houses. The cost floor provisions of the Bill and the 1980 Act are likely to limit the number of newly-provided houses that are bought by their tenants.
§ Lord Carmichael of Kelvingrove
My Lords, I hope that I did not give the impression that I was speaking about totally new build. I was almost totally concerned—I thought that I had made this clear—with alterations and the adaptation of existing buildings.
§ Lord Glenarthur
My Lords, I apologise if I got the noble Lord wrong. I took it that he was referring to new buildings. My noble friend Lord Selkirk raised the matter of the importance of philanthropic donations to this business. Yes, I am the first to agree that they are important. But we have to bear in mind and keep in context the relative figures. So far as we can tell, looking at the accounts of a number of charitable housing associations in Scotland—they include Key, Ark, Whitedale, Kirk Care, Bield, Govanhill, Hanover, and Pollockshields—these associations in one year received only £32,000 in charitable donations compared to total funding, almost entirely from the Housing Corporation, approaching £20 million. This demonstrates, I believe, that while charitable funding is important to those who make the donations—any money that comes in is of course welcome—the two figures have to be borne in mind and kept in context.
But philanthropy, important as it is, is not the only source of non-government funds for the housing association movement. It is now clear that the building societies, banks and other investors have a significant contribution to make. It is true, as my noble friend Lord Selkirk has said, that these investors do see problems. But these problems do not have their root in the right to buy. It is more that the rental income from housing association properties falls short of what is required to produce a useful return for this investment. We are giving close consideration to how this difficulty may be overcome and there are various methods under examination. In England and Wales, forms of 734 tenure which do not lead to a fair rent being imposed are already in use, and it may well be that some adjustment of the rent regime is what is required. But I cannot anticipate what changes, if any, will emerge from this work and I do not believe that a tinkering alteration in a Bill which is only marginally related to the subject would have the beneficial effect that some think it might have.
What I can say—this perhaps answers the point that was raised by the noble Lord, Lord Grimond, that was referred to by the noble Lord, Lord Carmichael, and that was the main burden of the remarks of my noble friend Lord Selkirk—is that the Government are determined to increase the diversity of housing provision. My noble friend described how he felt that the rental sector was the most neglected sector. We need to expand the range of tenures available and the variety of sources of housing. The housing association movement certainly has a central part to play in this expansion. The introduction of schemes involving both public and private funding will be a component. It is true that the private rented sector, meaning houses rented from private landlords, has declined. But the housing association movement in Scotland has made some rapid strides and now provides over 3,000 houses a year which are in many ways a part of the private rented sector.
As to the point made by the noble Lord, Lord Grimond, about the right to buy requiring mobility, a person, I would suggest, is much more likely to be able to move to another area, for example, for job reasons, if he owns his house rather than if he rents his house.
§ Baroness Seear
My Lords, the noble Lord cannot really believe that. Does the Minister not realise that a great problem in the South of England is that the price of houses is so great that the unemployed who come to look for jobs go home again? One can buy a house in the North-West or the North-East for a price at which one could not buy a hen coop in this part of the country. It is the need for rented accommodation to give mobility that is the whole point.
§ Lord Glenarthur
My Lords, I accept to a limited degree what the noble Baroness says. If, however, the noble Baroness extends her view a little further north to the North-East of Scotland, she will find that there the situation has been rather different over the past 10 or 15 years. I accept that there is a need for a variety of different housing availability. That is the point that I made in my earlier remarks. The diversity of housing provision is something with which we need to deal. We need to expand the range available.
I should like to pick up one point made by my noble friend Lady Carnegy. The Government have given tenants a range of rights: security of tenure, the right to a written lease and the right to carry out repairs, as well as the right to buy. The intention in this Bill is to extend the right to buy as widely as possible, making exemptions only where the house is needed for a specific purpose which cannot be met by any other means. If this amendment were passed we should be creating a group of tenants who have only second-rate rights. I am sure that that is not what the proposers of this amendment seek to achieve.
735 I have to say also that the scope of charitable associations in Scotland is different from that of associations in England and Wales—a point made by my noble friend. Scottish associations often provide a very wide range of houses. Many of them also have a spectrum of stock not all that different in proportional terms from that of a small district council whose tenants have the right to buy. In England and Wales associations which are registered charities have a much narrower range of activities. If the right to buy is not to apply to their sister associations in Scotland, Scottish associations will have to accept a similar narrowed range. I doubt whether they would wish that, and nor would we.
I am afraid that this amendment opens the way for abuse of exemptions to the right to buy. It is easy to see that any association wishing to avoid selling houses to its tenants, for whatever reason, might well look to setting up a new charitable satellite and perhaps transferring houses to that association. To avoid that kind of abuse tighter control of the registration of new charitable associations in Scotland will be necessary.
Also if a new charitable association is set up it will be necessary to ensure that it builds houses only for its prime purpose and does not gradually evolve into an association providing houses whose tenants would fairly expect to be able to buy them. This is not by any means a threat. It is simply careful management to ensure that the resources available are used to the benefit of tenants and that exceptions provided by Parliament are not misused.
I know that no thought of this lies with either my noble friend or the noble Earl, Lord Perth, who both acknowledge that there is a place for the right to buy. But the amendment has that problem. It denies tenants the rights they will expect. I therefore cannot commend the amendment to the House. I hope that the noble Earl will see the force of those arguments and feel able to withdraw his amendment. If he does not, I must urge your Lordships to resist it.
§ Lord Sefton of Garston
My Lords, before the noble Lord sits down, may I ask this question? I understood him to say that where a tenant does not have the right to buy, that would prevent him from going into the home buying market. Does the noble Lord not accept the case that was put by the noble Lord, Lord Mellish, that some tenants who have had the right to buy have bought at a discount price and then carried out the obscene practice of going into the private selling market? They can make excessive profits and move that way into the home buying market. There is nothing to stop a person—or does the Minister suggest that there is?—who is in a property which he does not have the right to buy voluntarily leaving and going into the private market if he so wishes.
§ Lord Glenarthur
My Lords, I think that the noble Lord must accept that the number of houses for people in a wide range of walks of life in the public sector which have been made available over the last few years has been an enormous success. I do not think anyone would deny that. If the noble Lord wishes to claim that it has not been a success, that is all very well, but I do 736 not believe he can do so. We are here talking about a fairly small number of people who are catered for by the exceptions that already exist within the Bill. I hope I have explained adequately that that is what covers the situation, and for this reason I have also been able to explain to the noble Earl, Lord Perth, that the philanthropic argument he advocates is met.
§ Lord Sefton of Garston
My Lords, I did not know I was out of order. I do not deny at all that if one measures the success of the home buying market by the number of houses sold, it has been a success. But there are other people who have paid the price and those are the people who cannot afford to go into the buying market.
§ Lord Glenarthur
My Lords, I think that it is also true to say that those who buy, although they may need to move for some very good reason, on the whole do not move. The reason they buy their houses is that they like them.
§ The Earl of Perth
My Lords, first I want to thank noble Lords from all sides of the House who helped me in supporting this amendment. Apart from the noble Lord, Lord Glenarthur, there has been only one (namely, the noble Baroness, Lady Carnegy) who argued against it. In listening to her argument I felt that she was confusing what we are trying to do. Neither the noble Earl, Lord Selkirk, nor myself nor many people who support this argument are against the right to buy; far from it. We have seen that happening and we think that that is fine. We are trying to establish in a very limited field that where a charitable organisation (a housing association) has got over two hurdles—the hurdle of the Inland Revenue, and of the Housing Corporation—is therefore genuinely for charitable purposes, will not cheat, as was suggested in one way or another, but in this limited field wishes to go ahead and set up a new establishment, I am clear in my own mind that as a matter of principle it should be allowed to do so.
It is all very well to say, "We are covering everything". I do not believe that anybody can cover everything. This is therefore an attempt to cover cases that could arise in the future. As I have already said, I believe very strongly that people who have been contemplating such charitable housing will be undoubtedly deterred if they feel that they will see some of their capital disappearing as a result of the right to buy in this limited case. Therefore, much as I appreciate the appeal of the noble Lord, Lord Glenarthur, I feel that no other course is open but to ask the House to support me in moving my amendment.
737 4.18 p.m.
On Question, Whether the said amendment (No. 6A), as an amendment to Commons Amendment No. 6, shall be agreed to?
§ Their Lordships divided: Contents, 144: Not-Contents, 99.738
|DIVISION NO. 1|
|Airedale, L.||Kinnaird, L.|
|Amherst, E.||Kintore, E.|
|Ampthill, L.||Kirkhill, L.|
|Annan, L.||Lauderdale, E.|
|Ardwick, L.||Leatherland, L.|
|Attlee, E.||Listowel, E.|
|Avebury, L.||Llewelyn-Davies of Hastoe, B|
|Banks, L.||Lloyd of Hampstead, L.|
|Beaumont of Whitley, L.||Lloyd of Kilgerran, L.|
|Bernstein, L.||Lockwood, B.|
|Beswick, L.||Lovell-Davis, L.|
|Birk, B.||Macleod of Borve, B.|
|Blyth, L.||McNair, L.|
|Blyton, L.||Masham of Ilton, B.|
|Bonham-Carter, L.||Meston, L.|
|Boston of Faversham, L.||Milner of Leeds, L.|
|Bottomley, L.||Mishcon, L.|
|Brightman, L.||Molloy, L.|
|Briginshaw, L.||Monson, L.|
|Brockway, L.||Moran, L.|
|Burton of Coventry, B.||Morton of Shuna, L.|
|Carmichael of Kelvingrove, L.||Mulley, L.|
|Chitnis, L.||Murray of Epping Forest, L.|
|Cledwyn of Penrhos, L.||O'Brien of Lothbury, L.|
|Collison, L.||Oram, L.|
|Craigavon, V.||Paget of Northampton, L.|
|David, B.||Parry, L.|
|Davies of Penrhys, L.||Perth, E. [Teller.]|
|Dean of Beswick, L.||Phillips, B.|
|Denington, B.||Pitt of Hampstead, L.|
|Denning, L.||Ponsonby of Shulbrede, L.|
|Devonshire, D.||Porritt, L.|
|Diamond, L.||Prys-Davies, L.|
|Donaldson of Kingsbridge, L.||Radnor, E.|
|Elliot of Harwood, B.||Reilly, L.|
|Elwyn-Jones, L.||Renton, L.|
|Ewart-Biggs, B.||Rhodes, L.|
|Ezra, L.||Ritchie of Dundee, L.|
|Faithfull, B.||Robson of Kiddington, B.|
|Falkender, B.||Rochester, L.|
|Falkland, V.||Sainsbury, L.|
|Fisher of Rednal, B.||Seear, B.|
|Fitt, L.||Seebohm, L.|
|Foot, L.||Sefton of Garston, L.|
|Gallacher, L.||Selkirk, E. [Teller.]|
|Galpern, L.||Serota, B.|
|Gibson, L.||Shackleton, L.|
|Glenamara, L.||Shannon, E.|
|Graham of Edmonton, L.||Shaughnessy, L.|
|Gray, L.||Shepherd, L.|
|Grey, E.||Silkin of Dulwich, L.|
|Grimond, L.||Simon, V.|
|Halsbury, E.||Somers, L.|
|Hampton, L.||Stallard, L.|
|Hanworth, V.||Stedman, B.|
|Hayter, L.||Stodart of Leaston, L.|
|Henderson of Brompton, L.||Stoddart of Swindon, L.|
|Hooson, L.||Strabolgi, L.|
|Hughes, L.||Taylor of Blackburn, L.|
|Hunter of Newington, L.||Taylor of Mansfield, L.|
|Hutchinson of Lullington, L.||Tordoff, L.|
|Hylton, L.||Underhill, L.|
|Hylton-Foster, B.||Vernon, L.|
|Ilchester, E.||Vickers, B.|
|Jeger, B.||Wallace of Coslany, L.|
|Jenkins of Putney, L.||Wells-Pestell, L.|
|Kilbracken, L.||Whaddon, L.|
|Kilmarnock, L.||White, B.|
|Kinloss, Ly.||Williams of Elvel, L.|
|Willis, L.||Winstanley, L.|
|Wilson of Langside, L.||Winterbottom, L.|
|Winchilsea and Nottingham, E.||Young of Dartington, L.|
|Bauer, L.||Home of the Hirsel, L.|
|Beaverbrook, L.||Hood, V.|
|Beloff, L.||Hooper, B.|
|Belstead, L.||Inglewood, L.|
|Bessborough, E.||Kaberry of Adel, L.|
|Boyd-Carpenter, L.||Kimball, L.|
|Brabazon of Tara, L.||Knollys, V.|
|Butterworth, L.||Long, V.|
|Caccia, L.||Lothian, M.|
|Caithness, E.||Lovat, L.|
|Cameron of Lochbroom, L.||Lyell, L.|
|Campbell of Alloway, L.||McFadzean, L.|
|Carnegy of Lour, B.||Mancroft, L.|
|Carnock, L.||Margadale, L.|
|Cathcart, E.||Massereene and Ferrard, V.|
|Cayzer, L.||Merrivale, L.|
|Chelmer, L.||Mersey, V.|
|Clifford of Chudleigh, L.||Milverton, L.|
|Coleraine, L.||Montagu of Beaulieu, L.|
|Constantine of Stanmore, L.||Mowbray and Stourton, L.|
|Craigton, L.||Newall, L.|
|Crawshaw, L.||Nugent of Guildford, L.|
|Cullen of Ashbourne, L.||Orkney, E.|
|Dacre of Glanton, L.||Orr-Ewing, L.|
|Davidson, V. [Teller.]||Pender, L.|
|De La Warr, E.||Penrhyn, L.|
|Denham, L [Teller.]||Peyton of Yeovil, L.|
|Dormer, L.||Portland, D.|
|Duncan-Sandys, L.||Rankeillour, L.|
|Dundee, E.||Reay, L.|
|Eden of Winton, L.||Rodney, L.|
|Elton, L.||Romney, E.|
|Fanshawe of Richmond, L.||St. Aldwyn, E.|
|Ferrier, L.||St. Davids, V.|
|Fortescue, E.||Sanderson of Bowden, L.|
|Fraser of Kilmorack, L.||Savile, L.|
|Gainford, L.||Skelmersdale, L.|
|Gibson-Watt, L.||Sudeley, L.|
|Gisborough, L.||Teviot, L.|
|Glanusk, L.||Thorneycroft, L.|
|Glenarthur, L.||Tranmire, L.|
|Gormanston, V.||Trefgarne, L.|
|Gray of Contin, L.||Trenchard, V.|
|Gridley, L.||Ullswater, V.|
|Hailsham of Saint Marylebone, L.||Vaux of Harrowden, L.|
|Harmar-Nicholls, L.||Westbury, L.|
|Hesketh, L.||Whitelaw, V.|
|Hives, L.||Young, B.|
|Holderness, L.||Young of Graffham, L.|
§ Resolved in the affirmative, and amendment agreed to accordingly.
§ On Question, Commons Amendment No. 6, as amended, agreed to.
§ The Earl of Perth moved Amendments Nos. 6B to 6D:
§ LORDS AMENDMENTS
[As consequential amendments to the Bill]
6B Page 22, line 6, at beginning insert—
("Where such exemption has not been claimed and granted in respect of all periods from the said date of registration.").
6C Page 22, line 8, leave out from ("at") to ("were") in line 10 and insert ("that date;").
6D Page 22, line 12, leave out ("the said date of registration") and insert ("that date").
§ The noble Earl said: My Lords, these amendments are consequential. I beg to move.
§ On Question, amendments agreed to.