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Clause 9—(Interpretation)

Volume 416: debated on Thursday 12 April 1945

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Motion made, and Question proposed, "That the Clause stand part of the Bill."

I am glad to be able to help again on this Clause. It is fairly clear, I think, but in paragraph Subsection (3, b) there occurs the word "de- mises." May I ask exactly what that means. It may be a Scottish expression, and some Scottish Law Officer might help us out, but I feel it is a word which can be used in more senses than one. I see the Home Secretary, and perhaps he might be able to tell us it the Minister of Health falls down. We ought to be in a position to explain all these things to our constituents.

I can tell the hon. Gentleman that in these matters I share his uncertainty, but I am sure the Courts would not find any difficulty in interpreting this. It is difficult to say in this connection what the word "demises" means, but I think it means "alienate."

That does not carry us very much further. Could it have the connotation of "to let" or "to sell''? We are told, and I frankly believe it, that here we are doing something of very great importance and yet we have no real definition of one of the leading words. However, I must resign myself reluctantly to not getting the proper information because, after all, it is rather a tumbledown erection that I see opposite.

Question put, and agreed to.

Clause ordered to stand part of the Bill.

CLAUSE 10 ordered to stand part of the Bill.