§ 85 and 87. Mr. Hector Hughes
asked the Minister of Food (1) by what authority certain hotels and restaurants make a house charge in addition to a charge for a meal; how many hotels and restaurants in London make a house charge; and what are the respective amounts of such charges;
(2) whether, in view of the fact that making a house charge in addition to charging for a meal places the hotel or restaurant so doing in a position to buy food at more than the control prices, he will prohibit the making of house charges in such hotels and restaurants.
§ Dr. Edith Summerskill
Licences to hotels and restaurants to impose a house charge are issued in accordance with the provisions of Article 5 of the Meals in Establishments Order, 1942. The purpose of the charge is to meet exceptional costs and establishments making a house charge are not entitled to pay more than the permitted maximum prices for food, which in any event would be illegal. I do not propose to abolish house charges. The number of catering establishments in London authorised to make house charges 257W is 127; the amount of the house charges varies from 6d. to 3s. 6d. for lunch and from 6d. to 6s. for dinner.