HL Deb 21 July 2004 vol 664 c226
Lord Grocott

My Lords, before the two Statements, perhaps I may make a brief procedural point, which follows various representations that I have had from different parts of the House and a recent meeting that we had with Leaders and Whips. My point relates to the procedure during Statements. I simply remind everyone of the Companion, which says: Ministerial statements are made for the information of the House, and although brief comments and questions from all quarters of the House are allowed, statements should not be made the occasion for an immediate debate". The emphasis is on the word "brief". My arithmetic tells me that the briefer the comments, the more contributions we shall hear.