§ Mr. Dalyell
asked the Secretary of State for Scotland if, in the light of the views expressed by the Chief Constable of Lanarkshire and other experts on crime, details of which have been sent to him, he will take steps to ban the sale in Scotland of long-handled steel combs, which lend themselves to use as offensive weapons.
§ Mr. Ross
No. Any restrictions imposed on the sale of domestic articles such as steel combs would be virtually impossible to enforce even if legislation could be satisfactorily framed. I am fully aware of the views expressed about steel combs in particular, but there are many other common articles such as carving knives, axes and bicycle chains, all of which may be freely purchased for perfectly legitimate reasons, but which can be and have been used as offensive weapons. Persons determined to obtain an offensive weapon would not be discouraged by banning the sale of particular articles such as steel combs.