§ The Chairman of Committees (Lord Tordoff)
My Lords, I beg to move that this Bill be now read a second time. It may be of assistance to noble Lords who wonder what it is about if I say that the Bill is a technical one. It allows the acquisition, subject to the agreement of the Secretary of State, of a small amount of freehold in an area of land adjoining an hotel in Kensington which, I understand, is by way of being a flying freehold, although that is subject to correction if anybody wants to check it. At present the land is leased to the hotel under the Crown Lands Act of 1702, which I believe was designed to stop the king of that time flogging off the Crown lands. The land cannot be disposed of except by way of a lease for a maximum of 31 years. The effect of the Bill is to disapply that Act and allow a leasehold of a longer period. I commend the Motion to the House.
Moved, That the Bill be now read a second time.— (The Chairman of Committees.)
On Question, Bill read a second time, and committed to an Unopposed Bill Committee.