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Civil Estimates, Supplementary Estimates, 1936

Volume 320: debated on Monday 22 February 1937

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Class I

Coronation Of His Majesty

Motion made, Question proposed,

"That a sum, not exceeding £152,000, be granted to His Majesty, to defray the charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending on the 31st day of March, 1937, for Expenses connected with His Coronation."

3.57 p.m.

I am presenting the Supplementary Estimate relating to the expenditure to be incurred up to 31st March in connection with the Coronation of His Majesty. Hon. Members who have the Estimate in their hands will see that there are three items. The first relates to the Office of Works, the second to the Earl Marshall's Office, and the third to Miscellaneous matters. The second and third items are small and are self-explanatory, but the first item requires a little explanation, and there may be some points which will be of interest to the Committee. The main expenditure for which the present Estimate provides is incurred by the Office of Works—

This is a matter in which the Treasury are primarily interested, and I am putting the case for the Estimate from the Treasury point of view. The main expenditure is incurred by the Office of Works, and the largest item on which expenditure will be incurred by the Office of Works during the current financial year is the erection and decoration of stands. The sum of £70,300 is expected to be spent on this item by 31st March, and the total cost is estimated at approximately £140,000. If hon. Members will look at the Estimate they will see that there is a note at the bottom which says that a further Estimate will be presented for expenses to be incurred after 31st March, 1937, and the receipts for the sale of seats will be appropriated in aid of that Vote. They are not taken into account on this Vote.

It was originally proposed that the sales of seats should cover the expenditure, and be appropriated in aid of the Vote for 1937, but it was decided, as has already been announced, that the price of seats should be fixed at an amount representing one-half of the net cost. Therefore, the appropriation will be less than was originally intended. The reason for fixing the sale of seats at that moderate price was to bring them within reach of a wider range of people. It may be of interest to the Committee to know that the number of seats to be provided will be four times as many as on the occasion of the Jubilee. There are, of course, very large incidental expenses in connection with the preparation of stands to accommodate so many.

Turning to another large item of works expenditure, there are the preparation of seats in Westminster Abbey and the building of a temporary annexe at the West door of the Abbey. Approximately £55,000, it is expected, will be spent on these services in the current financial year. I will give one or two points in connection with the work at the Abbey. The improvement in the technique of erection of stands which has taken place since the last Coronation function in 1911 has made it possible to accommodate a larger number of persons in the Abbey. The increase in the number is 700. That is due to the improved technique and the use of steel. Then cloak-room and retiring accommodation has to be provided, and in the figure I have mentioned for the Abbey that is included. The Committee will note, therefore, that the two main items which make up this figure of £150,000 under the heading Office of Works are the erection of seats in the Abbey and the erection of stands on the route.

The question of the allocation of the seats in the stands has been under consideration, and the Coronation Committee of the Privy Council are at work at the present time on a scheme for giving as wide a representation to as many phases of our national life as possible. The Committee will agree that unless an effort of this sort were made for a wide allocation of seats it would not be possible for the Coronation to be a really representative gathering. Efforts are, therefore, being made to allocate the seats on the stands on as wide a basis as possible. Other important items are included in the Vote. There are the decorations. The decorations are expected to cost £20,050 in the current financial year. That is for decorations not only on the procession route, but on buildings which are the property of the Office of Works throughout the country. In the decorations at provincial centres efforts will be made to harmonise and fall into line with the schemes that are to be carried out by the localities. In this Vote there is therefore a sum of approximately £20,000 for decorations.

Flood-lighting is to be a new feature on this occasion. It is intended to floodlight certain important buildings in London, including Buckingham Palace, the Victoria Memorial, St. James's Palace, St. James's Park, the Clock Tower of the Houses of Parliament, the National Gallery, the Tower of London, Somerset House, Greenwich Hospital, the Round Tower at Windsor, Hampton Court Palace and Gardens, the Admiralty Arch, Westminster Abbey, the Horse Guards, the Houses of Parliament on the Terrace Front, St. George's Chapel, Windsor; Trafalgar Square and the Royal Mint.

How long are those illuminations to last? Will the floodlighting be continued for some days or only on the night of Coronation Day?

The present intention is to continue the floodlighting up to 17th May.

From the time of the general illumination beginning on Coronation Day, I assume. It will be in keeping with the general festivities. Another feature on this occasion is to be sound amplification. That is for the purpose of relaying the service in the Abbey to the public seated in the stands and the far larger number who will be standing in the roadways, in Hyde Park and elsewhere. For this a sum of money has to be allocated.

Wait a minute. You are going too fast. You have said nothing about the Estimate for floodlighting.

I have given the estimate for the two large items which account for the biggest part of the Estimate, that is to say the erection of stands and the preparation of seats in the Abbey. The other items of expenditure are relatively small. The two large ones account for about 70 per cent. of the total sum of £150,000. The cost of floodlighting I can give. It is estimated to cost £2,000 in the period up to 31st March. That is for the preparation. There will be a further £6,300 in the following financial year. I can say now, definitely, in answer to the question which was put to me earlier, that the intention is to floodlight from the 12th to 17th May.

Does the Estimate for broadcasting include also an estimate for televising.

I cannot answer that question at the moment but I do not think there will be provision for televising. The purpose of the broadcasting is not only to broadcast the ceremony throughout the country but to inform and control the crowds in London and to help the police as well.

There will not be any television in the Abbey, at the Abbey service. That has been decided, I understand. Perhaps when I have finished my remarks the hon. Lady will put to me any questions she wishes to ask and I will do my best to answer. I must also refer to the fact that certain special work will be necessary to prepare the parks for the occasion, apart from the erection of the stands.

There are other details, and I shall be glad to supply them but I had hoped that the Committee on learning what were the major items in the Vote would be satisfied. The amplification expenses will fall into next year, that is after 31st March. There will be no expense of preparation before 31st March, and the amount to be spent next year is estimated at £1,800. There will also be a small expense of £300 in connection with the formation of a special telephone exchange to be established with a central switchboard at St. James's Palace. That is for assistance in conducting the ceremonial and for general control. Appropriations-in-Aid will be considerable, but they will be set off against the Vote which will come up in the next financial year. The Appropriations will arise from the sale of seats in the stands and from the sale of certain seats and other furnishings in the Abbey.

It will be seen that the preparations are on a large scale, and it is appropriate that they should be, because we are anticipating that the number of visitors to London on this occasion will be far greater than anything that has been known on previous occasions of national rejoicing. The facilities for travel have improved and it is the anticipation of those who are making the arrangements that the numbers in London will be very large indeed. The fact that four times the number of stands are being erected than for the Jubilee, is proof of that expectation. It is the determination of those in charge of the work to make the provision as suitable and comfortable as possible. Lavatory accommodation, which is not an unimportant item, had to be considered also. These are the main items which fill up the first Estimate of work undertaken by the Office of Works. The other items, for the Earl Marshal's office and "Miscellaneous," are smaller items, amounting to £1,000 each.

Not directly, that is to fall where applicable in the next financial year. The work is proceeding; hon. Members will have seen the stands that are being erected. In fact some hon. Members may have the feeling that we have begun work rather too early, but I assure them that it is better to begin early so as to ensure that the work can be completed satisfactorily. This is a time of some rush in the building trade, and there are many demands on builders for all sorts of purposes. The Government would have been unwise if they had not allowed the work to proceed early. If the erection of stands had been undertaken later it would have caused dislocation in the building and other trades.

4.13 p.m.

There is one item on which I would like to make a few remarks, because it is of the greatest public interest. That is the charge of 15s. for the thousands of seats on the Government stands. As the Financial Secretary has said, these subjects were first of all discussed by the Coronation Committee. Perhaps I ought to explain that the Leader of the Opposition, the right hon. Member for Platting (Mr. Clynes) and myself were members of that Committee. The proposal that a charge of 15s. each should be made for the seats was an agreed proposal by the Coronation Committee, and I see from this Estimate that the Government have accepted it. Perhaps I may explain why that sum was finally accepted by everyone. The Financial Secretary has stated the principle on which this great block of over 85,000 seats was provided. They are Government seats. It was decided that as this was a national occasion the seats should be so allocated as to ensure a national representation. As far as possible it was decided that the seats should be allocated to the great mass of representative organisations embodying the general life of the nation. Unless we did that, the other alternative was to allocate the seats as a kind of show, and we decided that the other was the better method.

The actual cost price of the seats is 30s., but it became quite clear that at that price those organisations representing the wage-earners and the poorer sections of the community would not be able to be represented, because they could not afford to pay the price of the seats. That argument affected not only co-operators and trade unionists but pensioners, fishermen, the lower grades of civil servants, and so on. It was agreed by those who spoke for these various bodies that a price between 10s. and 20s. would be sufficiently low to enable them to have adequate representation on the stands.

Some hon. Members may ask why the seats should not be allocated free. There are one or two reasons against that proposal. One is that a great many of the representatives of our national life on the seats will be those who are comfortably off. Moreover, they are to get the seats at much less than the market value. Similar seats outside the Government stand will cost a great deal more than 30s. It was agreed that it would not be reasonable to ask for another £160,000 or £70,000 when so many of the seats would be occupied by those not in need of any kind of subsidy. Therefore, it was arranged to allocate the seats on a fifty-fifty basis, and that as the seats cost 30s. the Government should provide half the cost and the occupants should find the other half. After a good many discussions that was the final and unanimous recommendation of the Coronation Committee, and the Government have accepted it. In those circumstances I and my colleagues on the Committee take the responsibility of supporting the Government.

4.20 p.m.

I am sorry that we have had both parties dealing with this question, because there seems to be an implication that we on this side are tied up when representatives of our party have met the other side and discussed this matter, and that we on the back benches have lost our right of discussion. I make a protest against that. Members of this House ought to be at liberty to discuss this matter and to disagree with the policy outlined. I am sorry that we have had the last speech, because it seems to me that the right hon. Gentleman has given us information which ought to have come from the other side. If the Financial Secretary to the Treasury was not able to give the information, then we ought to have had it from the Lord President of the Council, who, I suppose, was chairman of the Joint Committee. We ought to have had a full statement from the Government of what has been arranged. Some of us on these benches cannot agree to what is proposed. It has been agreed that there should be a charge of 15s. for the seats. Perhaps the Lord President of the Council will tell us how the seats are to be allocated. How many are to be allocated to ex-service men and nurses? How do the members of the Committee expect any workman to-day to be in a position to pay 15s. for a seat in order to view the procession?

Can we be assured that the Coronation will come off this time? Is there any likelihood of there being another hitch? Is there any danger that after all these preparations there will not be any Coronation? We had much talk of the Coronation for a long time when King Edward VIII was on the Throne, then we suddenly found that he had abdicated and so far as he was concerned there was no Coronation. We are to be asked to spend up to 31st March, £152,000. During the month of April and the month of May up to the 12th I take it that there will be very considerable further expenditure and that the total will not be less than £500,000. If we are to be asked to spend so much money, we ought to be given a guarantee that the Coronation will take place. When the Coronation does take place, are the Government going to use it as they used the Silver Jubilee? They staged the Silver Jubilee, and then took advantage of it to go to the country and win the General Election. If we are to spend all this money we have a right to ask whether it is the intention of the Government to take advantage of the Coronation, just as they took advantage of the Silver Jubilee.

I rose mainly for the purpose of protesting against our being asked to spend £152,000 up to the end of March and a very large sum afterwards, as long as the House is inflicting the means test on the unemployed. It is shabby on the part of the Government to take money from the unemployed under the means test, to take the last 6d. they can possibly extract from the pockets of the unemployed, and then to prepare to spend so much money merely on a show. It would be in far better taste to abolish the means test before asking the House to agree to this expenditure. We had a right to expect the Government to take that step, because they made a definite promise at the General Election, which they have not carried out. They made a promise which has proved to be deliberately false, and we are entitled on behalf of the unemployed who are suffering under the means test to protest and say that we will not agree to any money being spent on shows like this until the Government have taken the first essential step of abolishing the means test. I will go gladly into the Lobby against this Vote on the ground that they ought first to abolish the means test.

4.28 p.m.

I join in the protest against this Vote. We shall certainly divide the Committee against the proposed expenditure. Evidently the Government are determined, in spite of all that has happened, to make this ceremony as big an affair as possible. In view of the circumstances they would perhaps have been better advised if they are going to have the Coronation, to have made it as quiet as possible. I am struck by the proposal for this big expenditure, of which we have only the preliminary in this Supplementary Estimate, in view of the attitude of the Government to other requests that have been made from time to time. The other day I heard the Chancellor of the Exchequer, in a most brusque fashion, turn aside a request for the introduction of a pensions system for widows at 55. Anything that would be helpful to the people is turned down, but this big expenditure in connection with a show is approved.

In regard to the seats which are to be allocated at the price of 15s., one half the cost, I do not see why these individuals should have this gift from the public purse. I am sorry that there has been co-operation between the Labour party and the Government in this connection. Will the Government explain whether other people will also be given a gift of 15s. in order that they may celebrate this function? If the State can afford to give the representatives of various associations 15s., surely they will be able to give 15s. to each of the unemployed so that they may celebrate the occasion. It has been said that all phases of public life are to be represented on the stands. What associations have been consulted in regard to the unemployed and their relations to our national life? Perhaps the Financial Secretary will tell us what unemployment associations have been consulted. What associations have been approached in regard to sending a delegation? I shall be pleased to hear the answer, because if all phases of national life are to be represented it would be most misleading if the unemployed were not represented.

When the Government are making this gift to some of these associations I wonder whether they have taken any account of the special circumstances of the unemployed, because it will mean that they will have to give up their week's unemployment assistance if they have to sit on the Government stands at the Coronation. What unemployed associations have been consulted in the matter of representation? Have any ex-Service men's associations other than the British Legion been consulted? Is there to be any representation of ex-Service men and their dependants who have been denied pensions as a phase of our national life? There should be a stand for the victims of the last War who have been so harshly treated by the Government. The party I represent think that the expenditure of money in this way is something which should be opposed ruthlessly in the House and in the country. There are far more needy cases. Last night I listened to the broadcast of an appeal for an organisation which is providing for 130 children who want to have a hospital outside the East End. They have a site at Banstead, and want £150,000. I think £150,000 would be far better spent in providing a hospital for these children than in setting up all this elaborate machinery, and I shall have the greatest pleasure in the Lobby in opposing this expenditure.

4.33 p.m.

The vast majority of hon. Members will, I am sure, welcome the happy agreement which has been expressed in the speeches from the two Front Benches this afternoon. If Hon. Members who adopt the same antagonistic attitude as the hon. Member for Spennymoor (Mr. Batey) towards the Coronation find that they lose support in the country, it will be their own fault and not the Government's. There are just one of two points I want to mention. The first is in connection with the illuminations. I was glad to hear the Financial Secretary say that Westminster Abbey was to be illuminated, I do not know whether he mentioned St. Paul's, but I would ask him, if it has not already been decided, seriously to consider not merely floodlighting these buildings but also illuminating them from the inside. No doubt some hon. Members were in Brussels a few years ago when the city was similarly illuminated. On that occasion the churches were lit up from inside and the stained glass windows created a most impressive effect. I would ask the Financial Secretary to look into this point.

The two main points I wish to mention are, first, profiteering in connection with the Coronation activities, and, secondly, the question of providing proper accommodation for spectators. I am the last person to grudge a penny which is going to be spent to lend proper dignity to this great solemn national ceremony but, nevertheless, I think the House should do everything in its power to see that the occasion is not exploited by individuals for making exorbitant private profits. It seems to me that there is a strong tendency for this to happen. The Government have assured us that they are taking the most rigorous precautions to prevent profiteering in relation to their Defence expansion programme, and I would ask them seriously to consider extending those precautions to cover profiteering in connection with the Coronation. Hotel-keepers and owners of housing accommodation all over the city are demanding fancy prices and making fancy profits.

In accepting this Estimate which is submitted to us I think hon. Members would like to feel that the Government were taking steps to prevent exorbitant profits being made in connection with the Coronation. I am dealing now with the question of the seating accommodation along the route—

The hon. Member is ven ingenious but I am afraid his explanation will not persuade me to allow him to pursue the matter.

I bow to your Ruling, although it is a matter which would seem closely to concern this Estimate. I will leave the subject by expressing the hope that the Chancellor of the Exchequer when framing his Budget will seriously consider the advisability of imposing a special Coronation profits tax.

Surely the hon. Member is mistaken? Surely there is nobody who will make a profit out of the Coronation?

Let me pass to the question of the accommodation for spectators in general. I fully appreciate the position in relation to the 15s. seats, explained by the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Keighley (Mr. Lees-Smith). I understand that these seats are mainly to be devoted to the representatives of organisations and, therefore, if the individual himself is not able to pay the amount, presumably the organisation will assist him in meeting the cost. But I feel that the provision of these stand seats for representatives of organisations does not altogether overcome the problem of providing accommodation for the general public. It is not sufficient merely to provide seating accommodation for certain organisations. Adequate arrangements must be made for the general public and I would ask the Government not merely to consider the provision of seating accommodation, because that is very expensive to erect—

I suggest that what is needed is not so much seating accommodation on stands as some special facilities for standing room, and I would ask whether some of the money which is to be devoted to providing accommodation for spectators to view the procession might be devoted to providing in the parks gently sloping standing enclosures which would cost very little. A certain limited amount of space is, I understand, being provided for this purpose, but not enough. There are innumerable people who are perfectly well and strong enough to stand for a limited period, although they may not be able to wait up on crowded pavements all night. These people would gladly welcome any cheap or free standing accommodation that could be provided. It might necessitate an extension of the route, but I feel that a comparatively small extension of the route of the procession around the whole of Hyde Park instead of merely along one side of it would provide facilities for an immense increase in available standing accommodation. In conclusion, I want to emphasise that this is essentially a national ceremony, and therefore to express the hope that the Government will consider providing still greater facilities for those of the general public whose means are small to witness the Coronation procession.

4.42 p.m.

I do not propose to follow the hon. Member for Camlachie (Mr. Stephen) into the issue he raised, but merely to say that as he wanted the unemployed to be able to celebrate the occasion, so do I. I think the unemployed do desire to celebrate the occasion. The hon. Member has asked for free seats for them, but they differ from the view of the hon. Member. My point is a purely practical one, and has to do with our Dominion visitors. I have already raised the point with the Lord President of the Council by letter, but so far I have got no definite reply. As I understand it, the High Commissioners will have allotted to them a certain amount of space and in due course they will, no doubt, arrange by ballot or otherwise how the space will be distributed among intending visitors.

The position is that when intending visitors apply to the High Commissioners they are told that they can do nothing because they do not know how much space they are to get. That has created some difficulty, because it will be realised that these people who are living thousands of miles away have to make all sorts of arrangements—I am thinking of those who are coming from South Africa as the matter first arose there—and all they have at the moment is that it is hoped an announcement will be made soon. I hope it will be made very soon, because time is running on, and it is particularly difficult for those who have not great means and yet want to make this the great occasion of their lives. The whole thing may be spoilt for them if they come here and do not see the ceremony itself. It would not have been worth their while going to all that expense in making the long journey. Therefore, I hope that earnest consideration will be given to this matter, for this is not only a great national occasion, but a great Imperial occasion.

4.45 p.m.

The Financial Secretary to the Treasury, in explaining the Estimate referred to the allocation of seats to "organisations." I hope that a place will be found for one group which has no organisation, but which deserves particularly well of our countrymen—the Albert and Edward Medallists. They belong to every walk of life in the Kingdom; they are the heroic holders of the Victoria Cross of civil life. No band of men is more representative of all that is finest and best in England. If room can he found for them, their countrymen will gladly pay both for the seats and all the expenses to enable them to come. In the words of Horace (Epistles II, 1. 197):

"Spectaret populum ludis attentius ipsis ut sibi praebentem nimio spectacula plura."
A spectator, were they present:
"Would scan the show less closely than the crowd,
As men of whom the nation should be proud."
They would be a very honoured part of a great occasion. As regards seats in the Abbey, I hope I am not out of order in expressing the hope that precautions will be taken to ensure that no person who has not taken the oath of allegiance in either House of Parliament should be entitled as of right to a seat in Westminster Abbey.

4.47 p.m.

It would be stimulating to follow the hon. Member for Spennymoor (Mr. Batey), who galloped on his favourite hobby-horse, but I do not rise to discuss whether the erection of the stands will do anybody any good, because it is obvious that the great bulk of the money will be spent on wages and material, and will, therefore, assist the very people for whom the hon. Member for Spennymoor and the hon. Member for Camlachie (Mr. Stephen) purport to speak. I wish to ask the Financial Secretary to the Treasury a question as to the cost of the material that is being used for these seats. I was informed only to-day by a building contractor that the specification by the Government for the woodwork of the seats was of such a character that only the best joinery wood could be used. It was pointed out to me that the specification for that wood resulted in an immediate rise in the price of such wood by at least 6s. a standard, and that the price of wood for joinery has in consequence been very much dislocated ever since the orders for the stands were given. If that be so, it may account for the very high price which apparently would have to be charged if the seats were sold at their proper economic value. I am further informed that when this joinery wood has been subjected, as it will be, to the in-clemencies of the weather between now and May, it will be impossible to use it afterwards for joinery purposes, and it will be of use only for minor building operations, so that a considerable loss will be sustained on that account. I would like the right hon. Gentleman to tell us something about that, for if that be the case, I think someone ought to be made responsible for the loss which must fall on the taxpayer.

4.51 p.m.

The hon. Member for Norwood (Mr. Sandys) referred to the happy agreement which exists on this matter, but a number of hon. Members on this side are not embraced in that circle of happiness. We are of opinion that the seats should be sold at their full market value and that if there is any money to be spent, it should be devoted to providing free seats for those who happen to want seats and are unable to afford them. That, however, does not mean that the unemployed have any special desire to celebrate the Coronation. What the hon. Member for Camlachie (Mr. Stephen) said was that if the Government could afford to give a grant of 15s. to those who are able to travel to London and to pay 15s. themselves, they could also afford to give the unemployed 15s. to celebrate the Coronation by the enjoyment of a good dinner. The unemployed would be prepared to celebrate at any time on the strength of a good dinner. The hon. Member for Norwood said that this will be a solemn affair. Does any hon. Member believe that it requires £152,000 to have a solemn affair? I do not see how any hon. Member has got into his head the idea that there is anything solemn about this. If it were to be a solemn affair, it would be simple and there would be no expense attached to it. I have read in certain histories—I do not know whether it is true or not—that when Sir Galahad was preparing to become a knight—[An HON. MEMBER: "Sir Gallacher!"] No, Sir Galahad—he spent the night before his accession to knighthood in solemn session with his sword in front of him.

It may be a fairy tale—so much of the history relating to great persons is a fairy tale. At any rate, in that there is an idea of solemnity. But if Sir Galahad with his sword were to be presented in Hyde Park, and if for months before the Press were put on the job and there were advertisements in America, Canada and Africa of cheap fares for people to come over and watch Sir Galahad and his sword, there would not be anything solemn about it. This is a political demonstration, and all the money that is being spent is for political purposes. I am opposed to that. I do not know whether or not I shall be out of order in referring to the matter which was raised by the hon. Member for Norwood, but I shall speak about it from a different point of view. In regard to the allocation of Government seats, if there is any money to be spent by the Government, let it be spent in giving free seats to those who wish to attend and have no money. If there are any costs over and above those which the allocation of the seats may involve, why should it come out of public funds? Let the Government make a register of the seats that are being let privately and put on them a tax sufficient to cover all expenses over and above the money which is obtained from Government seats.

If I go to a theatre or a cinema, I pay Entertainments Duty, because the cinema and theatre proprietors have to fork up so much for every person who goes to the show. Here we have all sorts of showmen letting seats in various institutions, but where is the tax? Until the Government are prepared to tax these people, not on the simple basis of putting a tax of a penny or 2d. a head on those who go to the show, but on the basis of the amount of profits made in connection with the Coronation, they have no right to ask for a penny of public money. In spite of any agreement that may have been arrived at, I ask hon. Members—even hon. Members opposite—to oppose the spending of this money. This has nothing whatever to do with whether one is loyal to the King or has taken the Oath of Allegiance. Reference has been made to the means test. A week or two ago I asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he would take steps to stop the operation of the means test in the case of the pensions of the blind. He refused to defer the operation of the means test in the case of those who are so terribly handicapped in life.

The hon. Member is making two mistakes. Not only is he wandering from the Vote, but he is discussing a previous Debate in this Session on a different matter. He must not do that.

I wi11 not do it. I will simply say that there cannot he, in any circumstances, any justification for the expenditure of £152,000 on such a show. Hon. Members have said that people from here, there and everywhere will come to England for the Coronation, and that it will be the greatest occasion of their lives. Are we to spend £152,000 because some people want to have the greatest occasion of their life—because they want to go back to America, Canada, Africa and all part of the world, and say, "What a great show"? What has that to do with anything that is solemn or decent? When they come over and see the great show in London, will they go to the derelict areas, and afterwards say they saw those areas and people starving there while the great show was going on? It is a scandal that anybody should come forward and propose the spending of £152,000 in connection with such a matter when there is no need to spend a penny, because there is the possibility of taxing those who are making profits and of providing in that way all that is necessary to meet the cost of the show. Therefore, I ask hon. Members to say that public money shall not be spent on this occasion until the Government are prepared to make a statement as to how they are going to deal with the question of Government seats and ensure, by taxing those who make profits from the show, that no public money will be spent.

4.59 p.m.

I wish to do something that I have done on several previous occasions when supplementary Estimates have been brought forward. On Thursday last the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence said that everything was being done to examine every account with meticulous care, but the right hon. Gentleman seemed then to forget that a few nights previously some hon. Members had been trying to find out what price had been paid for Lansdowne House. Now it is a question of the construction of certain seating accommodation. The item is for the cost of preparation of Westminster Abbey and annex and the erection of stands. If there has been meticulous care why is it that it has come to light, in spite of the Government's efforts to keep things secret, that certain things in regard to the preparations for this kind of work have not been clean and above board?

Surely the test of the loyalty of those people who claim to be super-loyal is to see that the State is not robbed because of some State function. In regard to the steel tubes and the auxiliary fittings that are being delivered for the erection of these stands, have the Government, with their meticulous methods of going into these accounts, satisfied themselves that these things are honestly supplied? Can the Lord President of the Council find out what happens to these steel tubes and say how many hands they went through before they arrived for erection as stands? Can he say, too, why three different types of people dealt with the wood before it arrived? Why has not the House been told that the system adopted is that when the timber is bought a price is fixed for its use for another purpose after it has served its purpose on the stands. I was looking at some of the timber and there are certain of these planks which will not bear the strain between the five-foot centres if there is a crush. Where there is a resinous knot in the wood, you have to be careful where it rests. I measured three of the planks and discovered that when they were put in their place the knot was in between the centres and not over the centres where it should he for safety. These are the kind of things upon which the £152,000 is being wasted.

If people want to see the Coronation why cannot they wait for a dry day and have it in a big field where everybody could have a chance of seeing it? Instead of that the Government choose the smallest accommodation in order to carry out what they consider is a very important function. You could have it in Hyde Park, or in the open country where there are plenty of beautiful amphitheatres. There are some in Scotland which could hold all the people who would want to see it, and you could, incidentally, take back that stone which belongs to us. They say that the Scots have a firm grip, but it is not half so firm as the grip of the English when they get hold of something. Common decency would have returned that stone long ago. There is an item in the Estimates of £1,000 for the Earl Marshall's office. Is that sum for personal expenditure, or is it for a Secretary? While we are asked to vote this money there are in Glasgow people who are pleading, not for three meals a day, because they know they cannot get them, but for a mere subsistence. I had a letter this morning from the father of seven children who are living in one room. I find in all these cases the meticulous methods of the Employment Exchange agent, who goes round in order to investigate.

The hon. Member will realise that he cannot follow that line any further.

I was merely making a comparison between the expenditure of this money and the pence that would give life to these people.

5.5 p.m.

May I ask what the Financial Secretary thinks will be the total cost of the whole of the Coronation ceremony? The Vote before us is, I take it, an appropriation-in-aid and does not cover the whole expenditure. With regard to the allocation of seats, we are informed that the prices are to be cut down to £1 2s. 6d. and 15s. Various sections of the community will be invited, such as ex-service men and people of high standing. Will the dearer seats be allocated to the more wealthy people? We want to have some idea to whom they will be given. I am sorry that our representatives could not come to some agreement on this point. I would rather that anybody who wanted to see the Coronation should pay the full price for the seats so that no cost should fall on the community, as it will now. However, I am not going to fight against that because I am loyal to my people who made this agreement and I will accept what they have done, because they know perhaps more of the circumstances than I do. This matter, however, has to be regarded in the wider aspect. Something might have been done for the poorer sections of the community who cannot come to London but who want to extend their loyalty to the Crown. If some grant could have been, made to them, it would have been more appropriate than giving cheap seats to people who could pay the full price for them. There are many people suffering hardship who would have been only too pleased to get something to commemorate this occasion. An hon. Member on this side said that the expenditure of this money would go in wages I take it that he meant it would be for the benefit of the community. I have always argued that if we gave better pensions and increased unemployment pay, it would be for the benefit of the State, because it would give more spending power to the people. Therefore, I think that on this occasion better use could have been made of the money.

5.12 p.m.

May I add a word from the point of view of fact rather than of speculation? I happen to know that the timber for the stands is being provided by the Forestry Commission, and I can assure the Committee that it is not so badly knotted, as the hon. Member for Springburn (Mr. Hardie) suggested, that it would break if five or six people sat on it. It is the proper sort of timber for the purpose to which it will be put. There can be no suggestion that five or six people are making a profit on it intermediately. It is a transaction between one Government Department and another. I really think that we might assume for once that there is no dark scandal concealed in the proposals which the Government are putting before us and that it is a fairly straightforward arrangement, considering the fact that we ought to give free seats to some of our Imperial guests on occasions of this kind. I hope, therefore, that we may agree to it and pass on to more important things.

5.13 p.m.

It is news to us that the timber is coming from the Forestry Commission, because the other day we heard that an arrangement had been made that those who sold the timber were to take it back again when the stands were no longer needed. Are we to understand that the Forestry Commission will take this timber back? If so, it is a new transaction for the Commission. I have never heard of them purchasing back timber. I have heard of them selling it, but it is something new for them to purchase it. I think that the transaction needs to be watched, in spite of what was said by the right hon. Gentleman the Member for North Cornwall (Sir F. Acland). I want to utter my protest against the price for the seats being reduced and a proportion of the cost coming out of national funds. The Financial Secretary did not give us any indication as to the stands which were being erected. I see many of them round the Houses of Parliament, in Parliament Square, Piccadilly and on the Embankment. Are all those stands being erected by the Office of Works?

I understand that a certain number of seats are being allocated for children. Are those children to be asked to pay for the seats? While I protest against adults getting these seats at reduced prices under the conditions already mentioned, I certainly am not asking that the children should be called upon to pay any sum. Further, is the Office of Works persisting in the reported intention to place heating apparatus underneath the stands for the purpose of warming food? I consider that it would be very dangerous to have any heating apparatus underneath the stands. I have heard such a thing suggested and I hope it is not being seriously considered. With reference to the decorations, we are told that £20,000 is to be spent upon decorating the streets. I was under the impression that the Westminster City Council had undertaken the decoration of the streets in Westminster. If so, are we to understand that the Government propose to elaborate and embellish the council's scheme of decoration—that they are going to add further decorations to those already decided upon by the Westminster City Council? I hope that the question of the price of seats will be reconsidered, and that those to whom they are allotted will pay, at least, the cost price.

5.17 p.m.

I wish briefly to emphasise the point which has been raised with regard to taxation and the price of seats. I appreciate the reasons which led the leaders of the Labour party to support the idea of certain seats being let at a subsidised price so that people who are not able to afford the full amount, particularly people in a representative capacity, like nurses and so forth, should have this privilege. But it seems to me that we ought not, without imposing some tax, to allow the vast sums to change hands which we are told in the Press are changing hands, in respect of what is not in any sense a religious ceremony but the show part of the Coronation proceedings only. It surely is as much a show to those who go to watch it from windows and from the streets, as it will be to those who will see it in the cinemas two or three hours later and all of whom will have to pay Entertainment Duty. It is not a question of a reasonable rent being charged to people who want to go to see the ceremony. It is a case in which definite profiteering is being alleged and I think proved by practically every newspaper in the country and by all those who have made any inquiries into the prices of seats. We are told that these seats cost 30s. each to erect. They are being sold at 12 guineas each while seats in windows are changing hands at from 10 to 12 guineas each. Could we not have some agreement on the part of the Government that in addition to the subsidised seats—

Various references have been made to a suggestion of that kind and I was loath to stop those references earlier, but the hon. Lady is now elaborating what appears to be a proposal for a new tax, or an extension of an existing tax, and I am afraid that we cannot go into a matter of that sort upon this Vote.

Am I not in order in suggesting that what is happening indicates a grave dereliction of duty on the part of the Government if they do not collect tax on these seats?

As the hon. Lady has asked me the question as a point of Order, I must say that the answer is "No." The Government may be guilty of a vast number of derelictions of duty but they do not arise on this Vote.

I am glad to find, Sir Dennis, that you and I are in agreement with regard to the Government, and I hope that the responsible Minister will explain why, when all other entertainments have to pay tax, this entertainment is not to be taxed. I wish to know whether the Government will not put into force existing legislation in this respect. It might then be possible to provide seats for those who cannot afford even 15s. I do not know what enthusiasm there will be among the unemployed to see the Coronation but if it is their wish, then it seems to me they ought to be represented among those who will see it, and it is impossible to ask an unemployed man to pay for one seat—apart from the cost of travelling to London—the amount that he would receive for a whole week's subsistence. I therefore ask whether any arrangements whatever are being made for the poorest section of our community, to whom we owe such a great deal—the unemployed of this country—who may desire to see the ceremony but who certainly cannot afford to pay a whole week's allowance for a seat.

5.21 p.m.

I wish to put a question to the Financial Secretary in regard to the timber which is being used in the stands. I have spent a good part of my life in the timber trade and I was amazed to hear the statement that the Forestry Commission were purchasing this timber.

If the right hon. Gentleman means to say that the timber which is being used in the stands is home-grown timber, he is talking nonsense.

I understood that the Forestry Commission was a body which looked after the growing of timber in our own country. Perhaps they have also something to do with the growing of timber within the Empire, but I always thought their activities were confined to home-grown timber. The timber which is now being used in these stands is not home-grown timber and everybody knows it. Apart from that, whether it is the Forestry Commission or some combination of timber merchants acting as agents who have purchased and supplied the timber to the Government, I am concerned to know what price is being paid per standard for this, as first-class joinery timber, and if first-class joinery timber is being purchased at a given price, then I am anxious to know at what price the timber will be sold back to the organisation or the persons who are supplying it.

The statement was made earlier that this timber, which is supposed to be of first-class joinery quality, will not be useful, except as very poor timber, in ordinary building work, after it has been used in these stands. I do not think that statement is borne out by the facts. I do not think that the use to which the timber will be put in these stands will damage it to such an extent as to cause it to fetch a price much lower than that at which it is being purchased. Some of it, but not much, may be damaged by cutting and a reasonable estimate can be made of the extent of such damage. The only other damage likely to be done to it is that caused by grit off the feet of the people walking upon it, but the actual quality of the timber should not be any worse as a consequence of its use in this way. Indeed it ought to be worth very nearly the same price after the Coronation as it is worth now, less the costs of transference. Is it possible to give the Committee the two prices which I have indicated? It is important, I think, that we should know both the price at which it is being bought and the price at which it will be re-sold.

Turning to another matter which has already been mentioned by some of my hon. Friends, I would ask whether it is not possible, even now, that some sort of tax should be imposed to meet the general standard of low prices which I think quite rightly, has been arranged to meet the need of some people who will desire to see the Coronation procession. If something could be done in the manner suggested by some of my hon. Friends I think it would commend itself to the general public. I think it would be extraordinary, however, if we were to invite people to the Coronation and then merely because they can afford it to ask them to pay for the seats provided for them. I do not agree with that suggestion at all. When one asks visitors to one's house it is not usual to ask them to pay for the chairs on which they sit and when we invite visitors here to the Coronation it would be unreasonable to ask them to pay for seats. On the other hand, the position of those to whom my hon. Friends have referred is, of course, entirely different and I hope the right hon. and gallant Gentleman will be able to give the Committee some further information on the points which have been raised.

5.26 p.m.

I think we are entitled to a more complete statement than we have yet had on the cost of the seating accommodation. We are told by the Financial Secretary that the cost is estimated at about 30s. per seat. From my own observation and my knowledge of building and steel production, that seems to be excessive. Indeed, it appears to be something in the nature of a ramp, having regard to the actual cost of production, and we are entitled to ask for a more detailed statement. I suggest that the right hon. and gallant Gentleman should give us an example of one stand, stating the number of seats, the cost of the timber, the cost of the tubes and the cost of erection. The erection of a stand on the steel-tube principle is very easy and ought not to cost a great deal in labour. There is not a great deal of skill required in it and I venture to suggest that highly-skilled workers' wages are not being paid, for the erection of the steel-tube standards or indeed for the joinery work. I would like a fuller statement as to the wages which are being paid to the joiners and to the labourers, skilled and unskilled, as well as to those engaged in the erection of the steel tube standards, and all other costs in relation to this matter. If the right hon. and gallant Gentleman can justify an expenditure of 30s. per seat I shall be surprised.

I gather also that we are going to pay out of this sum some £1,800 for broadcasting. I do not understand this expenditure. We have a Broadcasting Corporation, and quite recently we increased their allocation of money. I should, therefore, like the Financial Secretary to explain more fully why this charge should fall upon the Government and not upon the Corporation. It may well be that this is in connection with sound amplifiers and that the police will want to have a larger measure of control, having regard to the large crowds and particularly to the large number of children who will be in attendance. This explanation may, of course, to some extent justify this expenditure, but, on the other handy I should like the hon. Gentleman to explain why it is that the charge has fallen upon the Government, outside of what I have just said, rather than upon the Broad casting Corporation. Then I should like the hon. and gallant Gentleman to tell us why it is that no seats have been provided for children. I understand from his statement that children will be found standing room but no seats. This is an interesting event which thousands of children will desire to see, and I think we ought to provide, as far as possible, seating accommodation for them.

The third point to which I particularly want to refer is the question of the allocation of tickets. I should like the hon. Gentleman to tell the Committee which are the organisations that are considered to be representative of our national life, and I should like him to give us a list. I should like to know whether disposal of the tickets by the respective organisations is to be confined meticulously to the members of those organisations and whether the Government are taking any steps to overlook this matter and to see that the tickets, once allocated to a particular organisation, are duly disposed of to the people for whom the tickets were originally intended. I say that because there is not a Member of this House who does not recall—though it has nothing to do with the Government, and I merely give it as an illustration—the confusion in connection with the English football cup final, when thousands of tickets are made available but nobody seems to have them. I admit that 90,000 people get there, but nobody knows, and there is tremendous profiteering in the disposal of these tickets.

If £152,000 is being found by the State, the largest proportion of which is being consumed in the provision of the requisite accommodation, I think we are entitled, if we are going to allocate these tickets to various representative organisations—and I make no complaint about that, because we should take the necessary steps to see that they reach the people for whom they were originally intended—to see that there is no profiteering. It is easy, of course, to say that we have so many tickets at our disposal and then to sell them at higher prices to people who have nothing to do with the organisation. We know all about it, and I hope this point will not only be kept in mind but will receive some kind of an answer to-night.

5.35 p.m.

There is one point about the allocation of seats about which I should like to ask the Financial Secretary, who, in his opening speech, said that the allocation was to be made so that it was on a basis representing as broadly as possible all phases of the national life. I understand from that that manual workers as such will secure representation on these stands, and I take it that a convenient way, in the first place, of securing such representation for them would be by approaching, or giving seats to, the various trade unions in which many workers in this country are enrolled. But here it is that a difficulty does in some cases arise. In my own constituency there is a number of manual workers, mine workers and engineers, but in practically the whole of that part of the county of Cornwall trade unionism as such scarcely exists at all.

The hon. and gallant Member is completely wrong, and I hope he will not persist in that statement. I know of at least three or four branches with hundreds of members in that district.

I am aware that three or four branches exist there, but I am also aware that at a recent revival meeting in Camborne of the. Transport and General Workers' Union only 22 men attended. If the Financial Secretary would try to meet the difficulty in this way, some fairness would come about, namely, that he should in the case of these workers approach their employers with a view to their allocating an appropriate number of seats to the particular firms by which the men are employed. In that way, if the method of representation through the trade unions was supplemented, I think those workers who do not belong to trade unions would secure their fair share of representation.

5.37 p.m.

The Committee will agree that the Government have not lacked advice in this matter, because we have had it from all sides of the Committee, and it has varied a great deal. There have been some hon. Members who thought the prices of the seats were too dear, and some who have thought, on the other hand, that no price should be charged at all, and there have even been some who thought that the Coronation itself should not be held in Westminster Abbey, but, I think the hon. Member for Springburn (Mr. Hardie) said, on a Scottish hillside. [An HON. MEMBER: "In Yorkshire."] No, I think the hon. Member said Scotland, because he also coupled it with a desire for good weather. The questions were numerous, but a number of them related to the preparation of the stands, and I should like to answer some of these. In particular there was a question raised by the hon. Member for Doncaster (Mr. Short) and by one other hon. Member as to the steps that were being taken to ensure that the tickets which were allocated to organisations representative of various phases of national life were used for those for whom they were intended, and that there was no resale, or profiteering, or loose treatment of these tickets. I think that was a point of importance, and I should like to give the Committee some reassurance.

Precautions are being taken. It is made a condition of the offer of allotment of tickets that tickets shall not be re-sold, but issued only in accordance with a list of names and addresses to be supplied in duplicate to the Office of Works, one copy of which will be given to the steward on duty on the stand. Each ticket will be provided with a counterfoil, which must be signed by the actual user of the ticket, and which is detached by the steward. In addition, each ticket issued will bear the stamp of the organisation through whose agency it is issued, or the signature of the responsible issuing official. Any counterfoil not bearing this stamp or signature would, of course be regarded with suspicion. Tickets will bear the statement that they cannot be re-sold and that if this is done, they will be invalid, and each ticket will bear the statement that it is issued under the authority of the First Commissioner of Works, who acts under powers conferred upon him by the Parks Regulation Act. I hope that with these precautions we shall ensure that in fact the tickets get to the destination intended. The hon. Member also asked for a list, but I am not in a position to give that. The Coronation Committee of the Privy Council has been working very carefully on the preparation of a scheme to give as wide a representation as possible, but the matter is not yet completely closed.

On a point of Order. I think this is of some importance. We are being asked to subsidise tickets on the ground that people who are to be invited by the organisations are people who ought to be given subsidised tickets, and yet we are not supplied with any list of the organisations. I suggest that in those circumstances we cannot give a vote.

That is not a point of Order. Whether the Government are giving all the information which Members think they ought to give, is a matter for debate.

I am sorry, Sir Dennis, but may I ask your Ruling, because we here of the Opposition have to protect the public purse?

I do not want the hon. Lady to misunderstand me. I was not objecting to her raising the point, but only to it being raised as a point of Order when it was not a matter of order. It is, however, quite a legitimate point to raise in the Debate.

I was proceeding to say that, for that reason, it has not yet been possible to give final instructions to those concerned with the allocation of seats for Colonial and Dominions visitors. I think the hon. Member for West Middlesbrough (Mr. K. Griffith) asked that question. I hope that that can be done very soon now. The work is really in an advanced stage, we quite recognise that these people have arrangements to make and final instructions will be given as soon as possible. The commissioners have not been kept in ignorance of the work that has been done, but the final allocation has not yet reached them for the reason that I have mentioned.

Could the Lord President of the Council not give us the information? The Financial Secretary might find it impossible, but the Lord President of the Council surely could give us some information.

The position is as I have stated. The Coronation Committee is a Committee of the Privy Council, which, in fact, contains representatives of all parties.

Of all parties, I should say, which are active in promoting the ceremony of the Coronation. Another point of importance raised to which I should like to reply, was in relation to the position of the stands. It was, I think, the hon. Member for Rochdale (Mr. Kelly), who said, "Where are all these stands? We see stands everywhere, but how many are we really voting for to-night? What stands are they, and how were the contracts given out?" This was raised also by other hon. Members. The position is that tenders for the stands in the Royal Parks were invited in three sections: first section, Hyde Park and Hamilton Place Gardens; second section, Constitution Hill, Queen Victoria Memorial Gardens, the Mall, and the Admiralty Arch; and third section, Whitehall, Parliament Square, and the Victoria Embankment. These tenders were put up to public advertisement in the technical and daily Press; offers were received from seven firms, and three different firms obtained the contracts for these sections. I can assure the hon. Members that scrutiny was applied when these tenders were examined and the offers considered by the Office of Works.

Can the hon. and gallant Gentleman say whether the combine got to know what was the difference in the prices accepted?

I could not answer that question without notice. The tenders were duly scrutinised and the lowest offers accepted, and three separate contractors have received contracts. The hon. Member for Doncaster (Mr. Short), as well as several other hon. Members, was concerned about the price. The higher cost can be attributed to the rise in the cost of labour and of materials, and also to the increased cost of erecting rear seats to a considerable height. Further, a good deal of the work has been done in steel, and the quantity of steel used in this work cannot to any great extent be afterwards absorbed into general use, and having regard to the point that the number of seats in course of erection is four times the number provided on the occasion of the Jubilee.

Several hon. Members raised the question of the origin of the wood, and the right hon. Member for North Cornwall (Sir F. Acland) spoke of the interest of the Forestry Commissioners in the supply of home-grown timber. A part of the work is being carried out with home-grown timber, and the rest with Empire timber. One hon. Member said we were using first-class joinery wood and spoiling it for house building, but that is not my information. It has to be a good, sound wood, able to take considerable weight; it is obvious that we could not run any risks by using wood that was anything but sound and good; but it is not what could be called first-class joinery wood. It is all home-grown or of Empire origin, and the steel used is also of British manufacture.

Is not the homegrown timber a little bit of English oak which has been used for decoration purposes?

No, I understand there is a considerable amount of home-grown timber used in the general scheme of construction and decoration.

As much as could properly be used in that work. The hon. Lady does not object to our using as much as possible, I suppose?

No, but the hon. Lady objects very strongly to the amount of loose generalisations the right hon. and gallant Gentleman is giving us, and the fact that he is giving us no indication of the quantities at all.

The work was put out to tenders which were advertised in the ordinary technical Press. How otherwise could it have been placed? These tenders, when received, were scrutinised by experts with probably quite as much experience in the matter as the hon. Lady.

All those tenders have duly gone through the proper machinery, and the work is now in hand. I take it that the general feeling of this Committee is that we should now proceed to vote on this Estimate? A point was made by the hon. Member for Hitchin (Sir A. Wilson) that the holders of certain medals should be considered in the allotting of seats. I am sure that is a point which the Coronation Committee will consider. While I am not in a position to make any promise that they can make an allocation of seats to those people, any more than to the members of any other organisation, undoubtedly any points of that kind will be considered.

I have noted that point, but I am not aware that anyone is in that position. I hope the Committee will now pass this Vote, because I think the great majority of Members will agree that we should like to make all the preparations for the Coronation worthy of the great occasion which it is, and will agree also to homologate the decision of the Coronation Committee to let the seats in the stands at something less than their actual cost in order to enable as many people as possible to be present.

A point was put as to the contractors or the Forestry Commissioners taking back the timber after the Coronation.

The position is that the Government do not buy the timber. Its disposal afterwards is a ques-

Division No. 86.]

AYES.

[5.51 p.m.

Acland, Rt. Hon. Sir F. DykeAmery, Rt. Hon. L. C. M. S.Balfour, Capt. H. H. (Isle of Thanet)
Acland, R. T. D. (Barnstaple)Anderson, Sir A. Garrett (C. of Ldn.)Banfield, J. W.
Adams, D. M. (Poplar, S.)Anstruther-Gray, W. J.Barrie, Sir C. C.
Agnew, Lieut.-Comdr. P. G.Assheton, R.Baxter, A. Beverley
Albery, Sir IrvingAttlee, Rt. Hon. C. R.Beaumont, Hon. R. E. B. (Portsm'h)
Allen, Lt.-Col- J. Sandeman (B'kn'hd)Baldwin, Rt. Hon. StanleyBenn, Rt. Hon. W. W.

tion between the contractor and the supplier of the timber, and is not a matter which is in the Government's hands.

5.51 p.m.

I want to call the attention of the Committee to the previous protests I have made against the unsatisfactory statement which we have had this afternoon. It is not a question of whether we are approving the arrangements for the Coronation or not. I am protesting against the way in which this Committee has been treated with contempt by the Financial Secretary to the Treasury. He has not told us the cost of these stands or the amount of the insurance, waving that off with the statement that that point would come up at some time or other. He has asked us to subsidise organisations and has not told us which they are. He does not tell us how much English wood is being used, and, in short, he seems to know nothing about it. He has not given us one single fact. Now we are asked to proceed to vote £150,000, and as a representative of one of the poorest constituencies in this country, which will have to share the burden of this cost, I want to make my protest against this unsatisfactory statement.

Can the right hon. and gallant Gentleman tell us whether there will be any difference between the price for seats at the front and at the back of a particular stand? I know there will be variations in the prices of seats on different stands, but I am asking about the front seats and the back seats on any particular stand.

The only difference in price is between an uncovered stand and a covered stand. Otherwise there will be no variation in the price of the seats.

Question put,

"That a sum, not exceeding £152,000, be granted to His Majesty, to defray the charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending on the 31st day of March, 1937, for Expenses connected with His Coronation."

The Committee divided; Ayes 238, Noes 11.

Bennett, Capt. Sir E. N.Groves, T. E.Raikes, H. V. A. M.
Benson, G.Guest, Hon. I. (Brecon and Radnor)Ramsay, Captain A. H. M.
Blair, Sir R.Guy, J. C. M.Ramsbotham, H.
Blindeli, Sir J.Hacking, Rt. Hon. D. H.Rathbone, J. R. (Bodmin)
Bossom, A. C.Hamilton, Sir G. C,Rawson, Sir Cooper
Bowater, Col. Sir T. VansittartHannah, I. C.Rayner, Major R. H.
Bracken, B.Harris, Sir P. A.Reid, Sir D. D. (Down)
Brass, Sir W.Haslam, H. C. (Horncastle)Remer, J. R.
Briscoe, Capt. R. G.Heilgers, Captain F. F. A.Rickards, G. W. (Skipton)
Brocklebank, C. E. R.Henderson, A. (Kingswinford)Robinson, J. R, (Blackpool)
Bromfield, W.Hepburn, P. G. T. Buchan-Ropner, Colonel L.
Brown, Brig.-Gen. H. C. (Newbury)Holmes, J. S.Ross Taylor, W. (Woodbridge)
Bull, B. B.Hope, Captain Hon. A. O. J.Runciman, Rt. Hon. W.
Burton, Col. H. W.Horsbrugh, FlorenceRussell, A. West (Tynemouth)
Campbell, Sir E. T.Howitt, Dr. A. B.Russell, S. H. M. (Darwen)
Cary, R. A.Hudson, Capt. A. U. M. (Hack., N.)Salmon, Sir I.
Castiereagh, ViscountHudson, R. S. (Southport)Sandeman, Sir N. S.
Cayzer, Sir C. W. (City of Chester)Hume, Sir G. H.Sanders, W. S.
Cazalet, Thelma (Islington, E.)Hunter, T.Sanderson, Sir F. B.
Channon, H.Jackson, Sir H.Sandys, E. D.
Charleton, H. C.Jones, Sir G. W. H. (S'k N'w'gt'n)Savery, Sir Servington
Chorlton, A. E. L.Jones, H. Haydn (Merioneth)Seely, Sir H. M.
Clarke, F. E. (Dartford) Keeling, E. H.Selley, H. R.
Clarke, Lt.-Col. R. S. (E. Grinstead)Kerr, Colonel C. I. (Montrose)Shakespeare, G. H.
Clarry, Sir ReginaldKerr, H. W. (Oldham)Shaw, Major P. S. (Wavertree)
Clydesdale, Marquess ofKerr, J. Graham (Scottish Univs.)Shaw, Captain W. T. (Forfar)
Clynes, Rt. Hon. J. R.Knox, Major-General Sir A. W. F.Short, A.
Cobb, Captain E. C. (Preston)Lambert, Rt. Hon. G.Simon, Rt. Hon. Sir J. A
Colville, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. D J. Leckie, J. A.Simpson, F. B.
Cooke, J. D. (Hammersmith, S.)Lees-Jones, J.Smiles, Lieut.-Colonel Sir W. D.
Cooper, Rt. Hn. T. M. (E'nburgh, W.)Lennox-Boyd, A. T. L.Smith, Rt. Hon. H. B. Lees-(K'ly)
Courthope, Col. Sir G. L.Lewis, O.Smith, Sir R. W. (Aberdeen)
Crookshank, Capt. H. F. C.Liddall, W. S.Somervell, Sir D. B. (Crewe)
Croom-Johnson, R. P.Little, Sir E. Graham-Spears, Brigadier-General E. L.
Crossley, A. C.Mabane, W. (Huddersfield)Stanley, Rt. Hon. Lord (Fylde)
Culverwell, C. T.MacAndrew, Colonel Sir C G.Stanley, Rt. Hon. Oliver (W'm'l'd)
Davies, Major Sir G. F. (Yeovil)Macdonald, G. (Ince)Strauss, E. A. (Southwark, N.)
Davies, R. J. (Westhoughton)MacDonald, Rt, Hon. J. R. (Scot. U.)Strauss, H. G. (Norwich)
Davison, Sir W. HMacdonald, Capt. P. (Isle of Wight)Stuart, Lord C. Crichton- (N'thw'h)
De la Bère, R.McEntee, V. La T.Stuart, Hon. J. (Moray and Nairn)
Denman, Hon. R. D.McEwen, Capt. J. H. F.Sueter, Rear-Admiral Sir M. F.
Denville, Alfred McKie, J. H.Sutcliffe, H.
Doland, G. F.Macnamara, Capt. J. R. J.Tate, Mavis C.
Dorman-Smith, Major R. H.Macquisten, F. A.Taylor, Vice-Adm. E. A. (Padd., S.)
Duckworth, W. R. (Moss Side)Maitland, A.Tinker, J. J.
Dugdale, Major T. L. Makins, Brig.-Gen. ETufnell, Lieut.-Commander R. L.
Duggan, H. J.Marges son, Capt. Rt. Hon. H. D. R.Turton, R. H.
Duncan, J. A. L.Markham, S. F.Viant, S. P.
Ede, J. C.Mathers, G.Ward, Lieut.-Col. Sir A. L. (Hull)
Edmondson, Major Sir J.Mayhew, Lt.-Col. J.Ward, Irene M. B. (Wallsend)
Elliot, Rt. Hon. W E.Meller, Sir R. J. (Mitcham)Warrender, Sir V.
Ellis, Sir G.Meller, Sir J. S. P. (Tamworth)Waterhouse, Captain C.
Emmott, C. E. G. C.Mills, Sir F. (Leyton, E.)Watkins, F. C.
Emrys-Evans, P. V.Mills, Major J. D. (New Forest)Wayland, Sir W. A
Evans, D. O. (Cardigan)Mitchell, H. (Brentford and Chiswick)Wedderburn, H. J. S.
Everard, W. L.Moore, Lieut.-Col. T. C. R.Wedgwood, Rt. Hon. J. C.
Findlay, Sir E.Morris-Jones, Sir HenryWells, S. R.
Foot, D. M.Morrison, G. A. (Scottish Univ's.)White, H. Graham
Fox, Sir G. W. G.Morrison, Rt. Hon. W. S. (Cirencester)Wickham, Lt.-Col. E. T. R.
Furness, S. N.Muirhead, Lt.-Col. A. J.Williams, C. (Torquay)
Ganzoni, Sir J.Neven-Spence, Major B. H. H.Williams, H. G. (Croydon, S.)
Gardner, B. W.O'Connor, Sir Terence J.Wilson, Lt.-Col. Sir A. T. (Hitchin)
George, Major G. Lloyd (Pembroke)O'Neill, Major Rt. Hon. Sir HughWindsor-Clive, Lieut.-Colonel G.
George, Megan Lloyd (Anglesey)Ormsby-Gore, Rt. Hon. W. G. A.Winterton, Rt. Hon. Earl
Gluckstein, L. H.Orr-Ewing, I. L.Wise, A. R.
Goldie, N. B.Patrick, C. M.Withers, Sir J. J.
Gower, Sir R. V.Peake, O.Womersley, Sir W. J.
Graham, Captain A. C. (Wirral)Penny, Sir G.Wood, Rt. Hon. Sir Kingsley
Grant-Ferris, R.Perkins, W. R. D.Young, A. S. L. (Partick)
Granville, E. L.Petherick, M.Young, Sir R. (Newton)
Grattan-Doyle, Sir N.Pethick-Lawrence, F. W.
Gretton, Col. Rt. Hon. J.Pickthorn, K. W. M.TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—
Gridley, Sir A. B.Pilkington, R.Commander Southby and Lieut.-
Griffith, F. Kingsley (M'ddl'sbro, W.)Ponsonby, Col. C. E.Colonel Llewellin.
Grimston, R. V.Potts, J.

NOES.

Batey, J.Maxton, J.Wilson, C. H. (Attercliffe)
Gallacher, W.Pritt, D. N.
Henderson T. (Tradeston)Salter, Dr. A.TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—
Kelly, W. T.Strauss, G. R. (Lambeth, N.)Mr. Stephen and Mr. Hardle.
McGhee, H. G.Williams, E. J. (Ogmore)