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Street Trading (London)

Volume 414: debated on Thursday 11 October 1945

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asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether he will curtail the activities of the large number of street vendors in the London area, whose source of supply is largely in the black market.

I assume that the Question refers to the sale at excessive prices by certain street vendors of fancy goods in short supply. I am informed by my right hon. Friend, the President of the Board of Trade, that energetic action is being taken by his Department to deal with offenders, and there have recently been a number of successful prosecutions. I am not, however, aware that there is need for the imposition of restrictions on street trading in general, which in any case would require legislation.

Is the Home Secretary aware that many of these hawkers are, in fact, robbing Allied soldiers over here who do not understand our currency? Can he do anything about it?

:As I have indicated in my answer, my right hon. Friend the President of the Board of Trade is dealing with this matter as energetically as the circumstances allow.

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that street vendors, generally speaking, are decent people?