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Clause 4—(Powers Of The Minister In Relation To The Commission)

Volume 440: debated on Wednesday 23 July 1947

The text on this page has been created from Hansard archive content, it may contain typographical errors.

Lords Amendment: In page 6, line 30, at the end, to insert:

"Provided that the Minister shall not give the Commission a direction in relation to any matter the effect of which, taking one year with another, will be or will be likely to be, that the revenue of the Commission will be less than sufficient for the meeting of charges properly chargeable to revenue, unless the Minister shall at the time of the giving of such direction notify the Commission that it is given in the interests of national security."

On a point of Order. This is one of the cases where, I think, there is a misprint.

May I draw attention to what I think is the misprint—the words "or will be likely to be" do not appear to me to have been passed in another place. I am looking at the OFFICIAL REPORT of another place and before this Question was put Lord Balfour of Burleigh said:

"We are voting on it, with the exception of the words 'or will be likely to be'."
On the question being put whether the said proviso, as amended, should be there inserted, their lordships divided. I take it, therefore, that it is not correctly recorded here, and that the words
"or will be likely to be"
are therefore omitted.

These words are actually as they came to us from another place. If anything has been left out, we have no knowledge of that.

I would like your guidance on this inconvenient situation, which is of a kind which I have never known before. I have the record of their Lordships' HANSARD, which records this quite clearly, and I should think that for this purpose it is quite in Order to draw attention to it and to ask your guidance.

Surely it is out of Order to quote in the same Session, anything said in another place and we should take the official record of another place, and not the OFFICIAL REPORT.

The OFFICIAL REPORT is published for our convenience, and for their convenience, and is not really an official record. I think the only thing we can do is to take the official Amendment which the other place have sent to this House. No doubt this point will be noticed when it goes back, and there will be opportunities for note to be taken of the point.

I am not quite clear about this matter, because I understand you Sir, said to the House not long ago that you knew there were certain things wrong with these Lords Amendments. That being so, is it not possible that this is one which has not been brought to your notice? It that is so, it seems to me we are going to be in great difficulty. Either we have to take this as it stands, with all the misprints, or it will be open to objection on every side.

I was wrong when I said all the misprints were due to another place; indeed only one is due to error in another place and the others, I am afraid, are misprints due to our own arrangements.

May I ask what the position is going to be in the event of our passing or rejecting the Amendment, and then being told that it is not the Amendment which another place sent to us? That would be the position if we accepted or rejected an Amendment which did not come down to us, because we could not rectify it, or because we did not have some rule to deal with these doubtful questions.

If the hon. Member chose to come to the Table, he would see the actual Amendment, and that is the wily thing we can go by.

With great respect, supposing this goes back and they say that the right Amendment did not come to us, what happens then?

It seems unfortunate if we are going to spend time in discussing Amendments which the House of Lords have not sent to us—[HON. MEMBERS: "They have sent this to us."] I suggest from the reading of HANSARD that this has been misprinted. I hoped that there might have been some means of ascertaining from the other House what their real intention is. Would it be possible to adjourn for some time, to ascertain that intention?

4.15 p.m.

I beg to move, "That this House doth disagree with the Lords in the said Amendment."

I think we can easily resolve the difficulty by rejecting this Lords' Amendment. That is the course which I propose to recommend to the House on behalf of the Government. To relieve the anxiety of the right hon. Member for the City of London (Mr. Assheton) I will say that I would have moved the same Motion whether the words
"as or will be likely to be"
were in, or out. It occurs to me that we should devote our attention to what such an Amendment seeks to accomplish. The purpose of it is to limit the Minister's power to give directions to the Commission in reference to the carrying on of their undertakings if, in the opinion of the Minister, such a direction is necessary in the national interest. As a matter of fact, I am informed that it is very doubtful whether even if this Amendment were accepted in its present form, it would in fact limit the Minister's power. We all know from experience that it might in circumstances of very serious national emergency, be the subject of legal action for the purpose of delaying any action which the Government of the day might take in the exercise of such power. Therefore, in the opinion of the Government, we cannot possibly have in regard to important services which represent a considerable volume of employment in the country, the possibility of expenditure of large sums of capital either in accelerating or retarding development, as the case may be, and in other matters. I should have thought, in view of experiences which this country had in the early part of this year, that the wisdom of the Minister having power of direction of this character should be abundantly plain to hon. Members of this House, and of the other place.

Hon. Members are aware that during the fuel crisis it was imperative to maintain the economic life of this country when certain action had to he taken in regard to the use of transport for the transport of coal. Even today, the community is being compelled to suffer considerable inconvenience for the necessity of the railways contributing to and augmenting the coal stock position. A decision like the 10 per cent. cut in passenger services for the sake of building up coal stocks, represents an interference with the revenue-taking capacity of the railways at present. That is quite a recent example of the need for the Minister to have powers of this description. For those reasons, I have not the slightest hesitation in asking the House to disagree with the Lords in this Amendment.

We are dealing with this Amendment as it is reported to us on the Order Paper, and I apprehend that when we have dealt with it we shall not have dealt with the Amendment which their Lordships made to the Bill, and that some further opportunity will be given to the House to deal with the Amendment which in fact was made in another place. By that time, no doubt, we shall have had a report from the other place as to what the position may be. As the House will recall, Clause 3 (3) lays it down that:

"All the business carried on by the Commission, whether or not arising from undertakings or parts of undertakings vested in them by or under any provision of this Act, shall form one undertaking, and the Commission shall so conduct that undertaking and, subject to the provisions of this Act, levy such fares, rates, tolls, dues and other charges, as to secure that the revenue of the Commission is not less than sufficient for making provision for the meeting of charges properly chargeable to revenue, taking one year with another."
That is a very important Amendment indeed because on it depends the whole finance of this Bill, and this House laid it down and intended to lay it down that the Transport Commission should not run at a loss. It was not intended that there should be a subsidy from the Exchequer towards deficits made by the Transport Commission, but it was laid down that, taking one year with another—although I should have preferred to have omitted those words—the Commission would have to pay its way. It appears from the answer which the right hon. Gentleman has given this afternoon that he is prepared, in certain circumstances, to depart from that position. When this matter was discussed in another place it was not quite clear whether the Government thought that the Amendment was undesirable or merely unnecessary. It appears to me now from what the Minister has told us today that they definitely think that it is undesirable. That was not made sufficiently clear perhaps—

In asking the House to disagree with this Amendment, I would point out to the right hon. Gentleman that it does not alter at all the obligation on the Commission to carry out the duties laid down in Subsection (3). Action along those lines would follow if it were necessary.

I fully appreciate the point which the right hon. Gentleman makes, but it was pointed out in another place with considerable weight and with the authority of at least two former Lord Chancellors, that the position was not as the right hon. Gentleman has now described it to us. It is true that Subsection (3) is not directly contradicted by this provision, but it is equally true that if the Minister were to give a direction which resulted in losses falling upon the Commission then, if the Commission carried out his direction, it might not be able to recoup those losses. A situation might very easily arise in which the Commission was led into making a loss whether it wanted to do so or not. The Minister has taken powers to give these directions, and all that we have sought to do is to limit those powers in such a way that he cannot put the Commission into the position of making a loss against its own intentions. Of course, in the Amendment which the Lords have sent to us, there is an exception in the interests of national security, and everybody in both Houses would agree with that, but the Minister wants to go a great deal further than that.

I am bound to say that I am not at all happy at the attitude which the Minister has taken on this Amendment, and I hope very much that on reading what has been said in another place, he will be prepared to concede this Amendment. I am still not quite certain from his intervention whether he is suggesting to the House that the Commission cannot be put in the position of being forced to lose money under his direction, but it is clear to me that certain directions he could give might have that effect, and therefore I suggest very strongly that we should agree with the Lords in this Amendment.

I was worried by the Minister's speech because it seemed to me that his main theme was that he should have the powers of direction in an emergency such as we had last winter. But surely this Amendment gives him those powers, since at the end, it provides for exception in the case of national security. That makes it plain that in time of war or at any other difficult period, the Minister could make regulations under this very Amendment which he says deprives him of that power. That was explained by his argument, but the other part of the Amendment seems to have been rather avoided in his speech. I do not know whether it is because of the doubtful clarity of the Amendment, but the guiding purpose of the Amendment is that the Minister should not give directions to these Commissioners which will compel them to run the railways in such a way that they will be financially unsound. When the Minister in his original reply leaves out that part of the Amendment, I find it rather surprising, because I know that he has a very sound financial mind as far as certain business interests are concerned, and I do not think that he wants to run the railways at a loss. I can think of Ministers who might give directions which could lead to such a loss, and I should have thought that there was a very strong case for the Amendment since no one desires that. In these circumstances, at this early stage in our discussions, it would he what I might call a lubricant on the part of the Minister to give way on this and to say that on further consideration this is a matter in which be can accept the Lords Amendment.

We may agree or disagree with the Lords in this Amendment, but before we get to that stage we should understand clearly what is the attitude of the Government to the Amendment. I do not understand it at the moment and, at the risk of being, a little repetitive, I should like to put the point to the right hon. Gentleman again. Clause 3 lays down that this Commission must balance its revenue with its expenditure, taking one year with another. Its says nothing whatever about the national interests or anything of that kind, but simply lays a duty upon them to balance revenue with expenditure. It all depends upon one's point of view, and, according to the view taken, the national interest might involve many other things besides effecting such a balance. There might be hon. Gentlemen opposite who thought that the national interest demanded that we should subsidise the railways out of public funds, that we should run them at a loss, or that we should use the transport system to subsidise coal or exports, or something of that kind. In Clause 4 the Minister is given power to make directions which the Commission have to follow and which, in the opinion of the Minister, will favour the national interest. It is therefore evident that the Minister can override the obligations placed upon the Commission in Clause 3. Does the Minister agree with that? I think it is self-evident. If there is any disagreement about it, I hope that the Minister will say so.

4.30 p.m.

The purpose of the Amendment is to ensure that whatever directions the Minister may give, they shall in no sense override the obligation of the Commission to balance revenue with expenditure. I do not know whether the Minister agrees with that object or not. I do not know what his case is yet. He ought to tell the House before we go to a Division. Is it his case that the Amendment is unnecessary because the Minister could not give such directions? Is that his case? He has not told us at all. If it is his case that, although he agrees with the principle behind the words, the words are wholly unnecessary, he should tell us. I think that the Minister can override the general provisions of Clause 3. That is made even more plain by Subsection (5), of Clause 4, in which the Minister can give directions to the Commission to discontinue any of their activities or dispose of any part of their undertaking. In fact, he can override the whole purpose and object for which the Commission is set up to operate. It is obvious that the general directions which the Minister can give are powerful and can override at any moment Clause 3, or any other part of the Bill. His direction can, for example, tell the Commission to stop owning docks. So far, the only case which the Government have made is that the proposal in the Amendment is unnecessary, but it is wholly unsupported by any sort of argument. The House is entitled to know whether the Minister contends that the Amendment is wholly unnecessary. The Minister said he was doubtful whether the words would limit the Minister's power. What does he mean? Does he want them to limit the Minister's power or does he not? That is what we want to know. Will he tell us?

Then he said something about another coal crisis, and that in the winter we might be moving into a difficult period, and somebody might start a law action in some way or another and that somehow, this Amendment would make it more difficult for the Government to deal with that situation. How on earth would directions from the Minister making the Commission unbalance its revenue and expenditure, help in a coal crisis or any other sort of crisis? Will the Minister explain what he means? I do not want to delay the House, but we have not had an adequate explanation from the Government. Will the Minister tell us at this stage? We cannot proceed with the argument very much further until we have had a further explanation. Will the Minister tell us whether he thinks the Amendment is unnecessary, and if so, will he meet the argument which I have brought forward to show that the words are necessary and that his power of direction will override all the duties of the Commission? Will he tell us whether he thinks that the Minister should have power to direct the Commission to unbalance its revenue or expenditure or not? If he tells us the answer, we might be able to proceed with the Debate upon a rather more intelligible basis.

My hon. Friends and I do not want to go into the Division Lobby on this matter. We want to know what the Minister intends. My hon. Friend has just used arguments which contain a very important principle. Clause 3 lays down obligations which were considered by many of us, and were supported by us, in the Committee. We want to know whether the Minister can, under Clause 4, override those provisions which were laid down very clearly as a safeguard in Clause 3, and which we supported. I think I am speaking on behalf of quite a number of hon. Gentlemen when I say we are anxious to know whether that is so or not.

I want to deal with a couple of points made by the hon. Member for Monmouth (Mr. P. Thorneycroft). Clause 3 provides for the carrying on of nationalised under-takings in the national interest. Subsection (1) lays down that the Commission must take such steps as they consider necessary

"to provide most efficiently and conveniently for the needs of the public, agriculture, commerce and industry."
Those words are subject to very wide interpretation. It might easily be that for a temporary period in time of crisis or otherwise it would be necessary that the railways or some other section of the transport industry should operate at a loss, and it is conceivable that the loss might be temporary. Take, for instance, the staggering of hours of work which is to be brought in during the coming winter. It might be necessary to put on extra buses for the carriage of people to work at uneconomic periods, and it might be necessary for the Minister to give instructions to that effect, even though the buses were run at a loss. The Amendment is tampering with that very—

I think the hon. Member is getting unnecessarily at cross-purposes with us. Clause 3 lays down no obligation about particular bus services, but it does oblige the Commission, in Subsection (3) to secure that its revenue is not less than sufficient to balance its expenditure, taking one year with another. The purpose of the Amendment is to prevent Clause 4 from overriding that broad instruction as to balancing income and expenditure, taking one year with another.

We all agree with that, and the Bill lays that down. The argument on the other side of the House is that the Amendment is necessary because the instructions given by the Minister might cause a loss of revenue and prevent the Commission balancing its accounts. I am arguing that the Amendment might be so interpreted so that any direction by the Minister which caused a loss of revenue to the Commission could not be operative. There is no doubt that the financial position of the transport industry today as disclosed by answers to Questions put to the Minister on Monday, is such that any addition to expenditure might make it very difficult to balance its accounts. Any direction which led to an increase in expenditure could, therefore, be resisted, under the Amendment. For that reason, I think the Amendment is a hampering one.

I wonder whether hon. Members opposite who know something about railways realise that, even under nationalisation, there may be times when losses will be sustained? Simply because you nationalise an industry, it does not mean that you put right all its difficulties. I have read very carefully the Debates which took place in another place, and there it was clearly demonstrated that the Government opposition to the Amendment was on the ground that the Amendment was unnecessary. Now it is said that the Minister must have the power to instruct the Commission on any occasion he desires, even if it has an effect on the balancing of the budget of an undertaking. I thought that throughout the stages of the Bill in another place and even today, we had accepted the principle—the hon. Member for Enfield (Mr. Ernest Davies) implied that he believed it—that all transport undertakings brought under nationalisation should be made, as a Yorkshire friend of mine says, "To meet and tie" In other words, revenue should equal expenditure. That is the principle involved in this Amendment. We either believe in that and vote for the Amendment, or we do not believe it and vote for the Government Motion. If we accept the Lords Amendment and the undertakings are balanced financially we shall have an exact record of their efficiency. We shall know whether under nationalisation the industry is more efficient than under private enterprise. It is a measuring stick which I ask the Minister to bear in mind. I hope that he has sufficient faith in this nationalisation scheme to allow this Lords Amendment to be carried.

There seems to be a certain amount of shadow boxing about the objection to the objection to the Amendment from another place. The first part of Clause 4 says that the Minister shall only direct the Commission on matters which appeal to him to affect the national interest, and that is sufficient indication of how rarely this power will be used. It will only be used on rare and important occasions, and it is a very necessary power for the Minister if we believe that transport must come before finance. There might be occasions in some particular emergency when it would be unnecessarily hampering the conduct of the transport system if such a provision as this were inserted. The hon. Member for Monmouth (Mr. P. Thorneycroft) quoted Clause 4 (5) as to the powers of the Commission and said that under that the Minister could direct the Commission to close docks and had the power to issue all kinds of instructions to cease activities, but in the second portion of Clause 5 it is laid down that the Minister can only give those directions if he is satisfied that the undertaking is unnecessary for the proper discharge of the duties of the Commission under this Act. It is not therefore, conceivable that he would issue an instruction to close docks because presumably docks will be necessary to this country for a long time.

Some Ministers of Transport might come to the conclusion that the national interest demanded that they should get rid of all the undertakings.

I am presuming that the Minister of Transport will be a Labour Minister of Transport—

—and I cannot imagine a Labour Minister of Transport taking that view. Hon. Members opposite have professed not to understand on what grounds the Minister was objecting, but I listened to him and he was perfectly clear. He has been advised that it would lead to unnecessary limitation and place in the hands of the Commission or outsiders an opportunity to object on the grounds that such a direction in the national interest will unbalance their accounts. It would be very wrong and unnecessary to insert a limitation of this kind, and I hope the Minister will stick to his guns.

4.45 P.m.

Surely there are two points at issue here. The first is the major one, and the second the lesser one. As my hon. Friends have said, we have got to clear up the major one first. The major one is whether in the Bill as it stands without the Amendment, Clauses 3 and 4 are not mutually antagonistic. Is it the intention that Clause 3 in its broad lines is to operate and that Clause 4 is to take nothing away from it, namely, that taking one year with another, the proceeds which the Commission draw shall meet its expenses and that it shall be a paying concern? The Minister, who was followed even more emphatically by the hon. Member for Enfield (Mr. Ernest Davies), pointed out that in certain temporary circumstances or national interest circumstances, that might not happen. The Minister instanced the coal situation last year. Are we to suppose that the words, "taking one year with another" would have got rid of that difficulty? Perhaps the Minister expects that coal situation to return. If it was only a temporary situation, this Amendment allows the Minister to deal with it in the way he wants. If it is a question of national emergency, once again this Amendment allows him to deal with it in the way he wants. I am, therefore, led inescapably to the conclusion that the Minister wants to have Clause 4 and Clause 3 mutually antagonistic and to cut out one of the broad principles on which we have insisted throughout the Bill.

I want to ask the right hon. Gentleman one question. It is very much that which my hon. and gallant Friend the Member for Central Glasgow (Colonel Hutchison) has in mind. Two quite separate questions arise here. I can quite well imagine that one of them gives rise to a real difference between the two sides of the House. It is whether or not certain powers should be given to the Minister. That is a matter on which we may well differ, but there is another question on which we ought to be agreed, and that is: What are the powers of the Minister under the Clause as it stands? Whatever else may divide one side of the House from the other, we should be absolutely clear on the powers that are being given to the Minister under this Clause. The question I wish to put to the Minister is a perfectly simple one. Does he or does he not say that he would be entitled to give directions under Clause 4 (1) which disregard the obligations of Clause 3 (3)? He will agree that that is a perfectly simple and direct question. He will he able to obtain skilled legal advice on the question whether or not in the Clause as it stands unamended he is taking that power. In the first view that some of us take, it would appear that he is, but, if he advises the House that on the most skilled legal advice open to him he would not be able to give any direction under Clause 4 (1) which would disregard the obligation of Clause 3 (3), it might carry great weight in certain sections of the House. So far, he has not given that assurance, and to talk about the Amendment being unnecessary may mean so many different things.

The only point on which I differ from my hon. and gallant Friend is that he asked the Minister to state what his intentions are. I am asking something different. I am asking what he is advised his powers are. Intentions would only govern himself and not his successors, but powers would bind him and his successors. I hope he will give a perfectly clear and direct answer to the quite simple question as to whether on the Clause as it stands he could over-ride the obligation which is laid down in the Bill under Clause 3 (3). While this House may be willing to give many powers to the Minister, it does not want to give him powers to disregard other Clauses in the Bill.

Replying to the specific point which has just been submitted to me, it appears to me that it could have been put with more purpose when the Bill was before the House, because it has very little relation to the Amendment we are discussing. The powers given to the Minister under Clause 4 (1) are quite specific and do not over-ride the clear and specific responsibility placed upon the Commission to balance its budget one year with another laid down in Clause 3 (3). One does have to take into consideration a direction from the Minister under circumstances in the national interest made for the moment and for the period affecting the situation, but the responsibility for discharging that situation would be net and steps and action would have to be taken for the purpose of righting any temporary position. However, that is not the issue which the House is considering now, which is the Amendment proposed in another place that introduces into Clause 3, where it is inappropriate, the intention to limit the Minister's powers—

In Clause 4; the right hon. Gentleman said Clause 3.

I am sorry, it is Clause 4. I was referring to Subsection (3) which is the responsibility of the Commission. The purpose of the Lords' Amendment is to introduce words as to which, I am advised, it is doubtful whether they do limit the Minister's powers. The fact that they are inserted, may raise a doubt and, on the occasion of the Minister using those powers, it may—I do not say it will—lead to legal action. In the opinion of the Government there is no doubt about the situation as it exists today, and we do not see the value of accepting this Amendment which tends only to add confusion. I venture to suggest that the discussion which has taken place this afternoon supports the wisdom of the Government's action. The hon. Member for Monmouth (Mr. P. Thorneycroft) put up all sorts of bogies and assumptions—

—and then proceeded, in the hearty and vigorous way to which we are accustomed, to destroy his own assumptions. Therefore, from the point of view of the Government, having made the position clear, I ask the House to come to a decision on this Amendment.

I have listened, as I always do, with the greatest care to what the right hon. Gentleman has said on this Amendment, and I should like to remind him that we are in the happy position in this instance, of not only having had the advantage of knowing what Government spokesmen have said, to which we can refer, but also the brief on which Government spokesmen made their pronouncement, because that was quoted with great frankness by their representative in another place. This is the difficulty which I put to the right hon. Gentleman. The Government brief on the point was:

"The amendment is entirely unnecessary as, having regard to the requirement in Clause 3, subsection (3), that the Commission shall make both ends meet, it would not be competent to the Minister to give a direction under Clause 4 (1), to a contrary effect."
May I put to the right hon. Gentleman our difficulties on that? Under Clause 3 (3) there is a duty placed on the Commission. When in a Statute, after placing a duty on one body—in this case a public corporation set up by the Bill—then in a subsequent Clause you give a right to a different body which, by its terms, may override or interfere with the duty, the subsequent provision giving the right to the Minister would be the prevailing provision in the Statute. The right hon. Gentleman knows that this is not merely my own opinion. I cannot go into it in detail, but it is the opinion of high legal authorities.

If the position he that the Government, as is stated in their brief, do not think this is necessary, but high legal opinion in various quarters thinks that this doubt may arise, then surely it is reasonable to put words into the Bill which will remove this doubt? That is all we are seeking to do. The right hon. Gentleman his said that it raises a doubt, but there cannot be any doubt because, according to their view, it is governed by Clause 3 (3). If we put in these words, then it makes clear that the Minister's directions are limited so that he cannot interfere with Clause 3 (3), and in that case assurance is made doubly sure. We have been rather worried on this side of the House by the arguments advanced in favour of the Government case by their more intrepid supporters because, of course, they always go a bit further in finding arguments which do not accord with that main argument which has been advanced, and it is the feeling and attitude behind these arguments which make it difficult for those on this side of the House to depart from this Amendment.

The right hon. Gentleman knows very well that there are three difficulties about which we are alarmed, and from which we are trying to protect the country. The first is an interference by the Minister—I am not referring to the right hon. Gentleman but to the person who holds the office of Minister of Transport for the moment—with charging schemes that have gone up through the process from the Commission to the tribunal and are being considered by the tribunal. If there is then an interference with the charging schemes, the whole of that work may be thrown up. Secondly, you may have the imposition of such grave obligations on the Commission that it cannot pay its way on the present charging scheme which it has got up. Then it has to go back for further charging schemes and, as the right hon. Gentleman and every hon. Member knows, there comes a point where you

Division No. 319.]


[5.1 p.m.

Adams, Richard (Balham)Collins, V. J.Grey, C. F.
Adams, W. T. (Hammersmith, South)Colman, Miss G. M.Grierson, E.
Allen, A. C. (Bosworth)Comyns, Dr. L.Griffiths, D. (Rother Valley)
Alpass, J. H.Cooper, Wing-Comdr Griffiths, Rt. Hon J. (Llanelly)
Anderson, F (Whitehaven)Cove, W. GGriffiths, W. D (Moss Side)
Attewell, H. C.Daggar, G.Guest, Dr. L. Haden
Austin, H. LewisDavies, Edward (Burslem)Gunter, R. J
Awbery, S. S.Davies, Ernest (Enfield)Guy, W. H.
Ayles, W. H.Davies, Harold (Leek)Hall, W. G.
Ayrton Gould, Mrs BDavies, Hadyn (St Pancras s W)Hamilton, Lieut.-Col. R
Balfour, A.Davies, R J (Westhoughton)Hannan, W. (Maryhill)
Barnes, Rt. Hon A JDeer, G.Hardy, E A.
Barstow, P. Freitas, GeoffreyHarrison, J.
Barton, C.Delargy, H. JHastings, Dr. Somerville
Battley, J. R.Diamond, JHaworth, J.
Bechervaise, A. EDobbie, WHenderson, A (Kingswinford)
Benson, G.Dodds, N. NHenderson, Joseph (Ardwick)
Beswick, F.Driberg, T E. NHerbison, Miss M
Bing, G. H. C.Dugdale, J (W Bromwich)Holman, P.
Blackburn, A. RDumpleton, C W.Holmes, H. E. (Hemsworth)
Blenkinsop, A.Durbin, E. F. MHouse, G
Blyton, W. RDye, S.Hubbard, T
Bowden, Flg.-Offr. H. WEdelman, M.Hudson, J. H. (Ealing, W.)
Bowles, F. G. (Nuneaton)Edwards, A. (Middlesbrough, E)Hughes, Hector (Aberdeen, N.)
Braddock, Mrs. E. M. (L'pt Exch'ge)Edwards, John (Blackburn)Hughes, H. D. (Wolverhampton, W.)
Braddock, T. (Mitcham)Evans, John (Ogmore)Hutchinson, H. L. (Rusholme)
Bramall, E. A.Evans, S. N. (Wednesbury)Hynd, H. (Hackney, C.)
Brook, D. (Halifax)Ewart, R.Hynd, J. B. (Attercliffe)
Brooks, T. J. (Rothwell)Farthing, W. J.Irving, W. J
Brown, George (Belper)Field, Capt W JJanner, B.
Brown, T. J. (Ince)Foot, M. MJay, D. P T
Bruce, Maj. D. W TForman, J. C.Jeger, G. (Winchester)
Buchanan, G.Foster, W. (Wigan)Jones, D. T. (Hartlepools)
Burden, T. W.Fraser, T. (Hamilton)Jones, Elwyn (Plaistow)
Burke, W. A.Freeman, Peter (Newport)Jones, J. H. (Bolton)
Butler, H. W. (Hackney, S)Ganley, Mrs C. SJones, P. Asterley (Hitchin)
Callaghan, JamesGibbins, J.Keenan, W.
Carmichael, JamesGibson, C. WKenyon, C.
Chamberlain, R. AGilzean, AKey, C W
Champion, A J.Glanville, J. E. (Consett)King, E. M.
Chater, D.Gooch, E. G.Kinghorn, Sqn.-Ldr E
Chetwynd, G. RGoodrich, H. E.Kinley, J
Cluse, W S.Gordon-Walker, P CKirby, B. V
Cocks, F. S.Greenwood, A. W J. (Heywood)Kirkwood, D
Coldrick, W.Grenfell, D. RLang, G.

cannot depend upon getting a return from increased charges.

Thirdly, we want to strengthen the hands of the Minister in the direction of freights. The right hon. Gentleman the Lord President of the Council and Leader of this House has emphasised on many an occasion that, if the public corporation is to succeed at all, it must be protected from its charges and its fares being subjected to political pressure. Now the direction of the Minister is the vehicle of political pressure, and it is in order to restrict that possibility, to keep the Transport Commission within the unsullied lines which the Lord President of the Council has laid down as desirable, that we feel we cannot let opposition to the rejection of this Amendment go, but must support the Amendment in the Division Lobby.

Question put, "That this House doth disagree with the Lords in the said Amendment."

The House divided: Ayes. 295; Noes, 148.

Lavers, S.Palmer, A. M. FStross, Dr. B
Lee, F. (Hulme)Pargiter, G. ASummerskill, Dr. Edith
Lee, Miss J. (Cannock)Parker, J.Swingler, S.
Leslie, J. R.Parkin, B. T.Sylvester, G. O.
Lever, N. H.Paton, J. (Norwich)Symonds, A. L.
Levy, B. W.Peart, T. F.Taylor, H. B. (Mansfield)
Lewis, A. W. J. (Upton)Piratin, P.Taylor, R. J. (Morpeth)
Lewis, J. (Bolton)Piatts-Mills, J. F. F.Taylor, Dr. S. (Barnet)
Lindgren, G. S.Poole, Major Cecil (Lichfield)Thomas, D. E. (Aberdare)
Lipton, Lt.-Col. MPopplewell, E.Thomas, Ivor (Keighley)
Logan, D. G.Porter, E. (Warrington)Thomas, I. O. (Wrekin)
Longden, F.Porter, G. (Leeds)Thomas, George (Cardiff)
Lyne, A. W.Price, M. PhilipsThomson, Rt. Hn. G. R. (Ed'b'gh, E.)
McAdam, W.Proctor, W. T.Thorneycroft, Harry (Clayton)
McEntee, V. La T.Pryde, D. J.Thurtle, Ernest
McGhee, H. G.Randall, H. E.Tiffany, S.
McGovern, J.Ranger, J.Timmons, J.
Mack, J. D.Rankin, J.Titterington, M. F.
McKay, J (Wallsend)Rees-Williams, D. R.Tolley, L.
McKinlay, A. S.Reeves, J.Turner-Samuels, M.
Maclean, N. (Govan)Reid, T. (Swindon)Ungoed-Thomas, L
McLeavy, F.Rhodes, H.Usborne, Henry
MacMillan, M. K. (Western Isles)Richards, R.Vernon, Maj. W. F
Macpherson, T. (Romford)Ridealgh, Mrs. MViant, S. P.
Mainwaring, W. H.Robens, A.Walkden, E.
Mallalieu, J. P. W.Roberts, Goronwy (Caernarvonshire)Walker, G. H.
Manning, C. (Camberwell, N.)Robertson, J. J. (Berwick)Wallace, G. D. (Chislehurst)
Manning, Mrs. L. (Epping)Rogers, G. H. R.Wallace, H. W. (Walthamstow, E.)
Marquand, H. A.Ross, William (Kilmarnock)Watkins, T. E.
Marshall, F. (Brightside)Royle, C.Watson, W. M.
Mathers, G.Sargood, R.Webb, M. (Bradford, C.)
Mayhew, C. P.Scollan, T.Weitzman, D.
Medland, H. M.Scott-Elliot, W.Wells, P. L. (Faversham)
Mellish, R. J.Segal, Dr. S.West, D. G.
Messer, F.Shackleton, E. A AWhite, H. (Derbyshire, N.E.)
Mikardo, IanSharps, GranvilleWhiteley, Rt. Hon W
Millington, Wing-Comdr. E. R.Shawcross, Rt Hn. Sir H. (St. Helens)Wilkes, L.
Mitchison, G. R.Shurmer, P.Wilkins, W. A.
Monslow, W.Silverman, J. (Erdington)Willey, F. T. (Sunderland)
Moody, A. S.Simmons, C. J.Willey, O. G. (Cleveland)
Morgan, Dr. H. B.Skeffington-Lodge, T. CWilliams, D. J. (Neath)
Morley, R.Skinnard, F. W.Williams, J. L. (Kelvingrove)
Morris, P. (Swansea, W.)Smith, C. (Colchester)Williams, W. R. (Heston)
Moyle, A.Smith, H. N. (Nottingham, S.)Williamson, T
Murray, J. D.Smith, S. H. (Hull, S. W.)Willis, E.
Nally, W.Snow, Capt. J. W.Wills, Mrs. E. A.
Naylor, T. E.Solley, L. J.Woodburn, A.
Neal, H. (Claycross)Sorensen, R. W.Woods, G. S
Nicholls, H R (Stratford)Soskice, Maj. Sir F.Yates, V. F.
Noel-Baker, Capt. F. E. (Brentford)Sparks, J. AYoung, Sir R. (Newton)
Noel-Buxton, LadyStamford, WYounger, Hon. Kenneth
Oldfield, W. H.Stephen, C.Zilliacus, K.
Orbach, M.Stewart, Michael (Fulham, E.)
Paget, R. TStrauss, G R. (Lambeth, N.)TELLERS FOR THE AYES:
Mr. Pearson and Mr. Daines.


Amory, D. HeathcoatCuthbert, W. N.Harvey, Air-Comdre. A. V.
Assheton, Rt. Hon. RDavidson, ViscountessHaughton, S. G
Astor, Hon. M.De la Bère, R.Head, Brig. A. H
Baldwin, A. E.Digby, S. W.Headlam, Lieut.-Col. Rt. Hon. Sir C
Barlow, Sir J.Donner, Sqn.-Ldr. P. W.Henderson, John (Cathcart)
Baxter, A. B.Dower, Lt.-Col. A. V. G. (Penrith)Hinchingbrooke, Viscount
Beamish, Mai. T. V. HDower, E. L. G. (Caithness)Hogg, Hon. Q
Bennett, Sir P.Drayson, G. B.Hollis, M. C.
Birch, NigelDugdale, Maj. Sir T (Richmond)Holmes, Sir J. Stanley (Harwich)
Boles, Lt.-Col D. G. (Wells)Duthie, W. S.Hope, Lord J.
Bower, NEden, Rt. Hon A.Hudson, Rt. Hon. R. S. (Southport)
Boyd-Carpenter, J. A.Elliot Rt. Hon. WalletHutchison, Lt.-Cm. Clark (E'b'rgh W.)
Bromley-Davenport, Lt.-Col WErroll, F. J.Hutchison, Col. J. R. (Glasgow. C.)
Buchan-Hepburn, P G. T.Fletcher, W. (Bury)Jeffreys, General Sir G
Butcher, H. W.Fraser, H. C. P. (Stone)Keeling, E. H.
Butler, Rt. Hon. R. A. (S'ffr'n W'ld'n)Fraser, Sir I. (Lonsdale)Kerr, Sir J. Graham
Byers, FrankFyfe, Rt. Hon. Sir D. P. M.Kingsmill, Lt.-Col. W. H
Challen, C.Gage, C.Lambert, Hon. G.
Channon, H.Galbraith, Cmdr. T. D.Lancaster, Col. C. G
Clarke, Col R. S.Gammans, L. D.Langford-Holt, J.
Clifton-Brown, Lt.-Col. GGeorge, Lady M. Lloyd (Anglesey)Law, Rt. Hon. R. K.
Conant, Maj. R. J. E.Grant, LadyLegge-Bourke, Maj. E. A. H.
Cooper-Key, E. M.Gridley, Sir A.Lennox-Boyd, A. T.
Corbett, Lieut.-Col. U. (Ludlow)Grimston, R. V.Lindsay, M (Solihull)
Crookshank, Capt Rt. Hon. H F. C.Gruffydd, Prof. W. J.Linstead, H N
Crosthwaite-Eyre, Col. O. E.Hannon, Sir P. (Moseley)Lipson, D. L
Crowder, Capt. John E.Hare, Hon J. H (Woodbridge)Lloyd, Maj Guy (Renfrew, E.)

Llyd, Selwyn (Wirral)Noble, Comdr. A. H. PStoddart-Scott, Col. M.
Low, Brig. A R WOrr-Ewing, I. L.Strauss, H. G (English Universities)
Lucas-Tooth, Sir HPeto, Brig. C. H. MStudholme, H. G
Lyttelton, Rt. Hon OPickthorn, KTeeling, William
McCallum, Maj. D.Ponsonby, Col. C. E.Thorneycroft, G. E. P. (Monmouth)
Macdonald, Sir P. (I of Wight)Poole, O. B. S. (Oswestry)Thornton-Kemsley, C. N
Mackeson, Brig. H. R.Price-White, Lt.-Col. DThorp Lt.-Col R A F
McKie, J. H. (Galloway)Prior-Palmer, Brig. OTouche, G. C
Maclay, Hon. J SRayner, Brig RTurton, R. H.
MacLeod, JReed, Sir S. (Aylesbury)Vane, W M F
Macmillan, Rt. Hon. Harold (Bromley)Reid, Rt. Hon. J. S. C. (Hillhead)Wadsworth, G
Macpherson, N. (Dumfries)Roberts, H. (Handsworth)Walker-Smith, D.
Maitland, Comdr. J. W.Roberts, Maj. P. G. (Ecclesall)Ward, Hon G R
Manningham-Buller, R ERoberts, W (Cumberland, N.)Watt, Sir G. S Harvie
Marsden, Capt. A.Robinson, Wing-Comdr. RolandWheatley, Colonel M. J
Marshall, D. (Bodmin)Ropner Col. LWhite, Sir D. (Fareham)
Marshall S H. (Sutton)Sanderson, Sir F.Williams, C. (Torquay)
Mellor, Sir JSavory, Prof. D. LWinterton, Rt. Hon Earl
Molson, A. H E.Scott, Lord W.York, C
Morris, Hopkin (Carmarthen)Smiles, Lt.-Col. Sir W
Morrison, Maj. J. G (Salisbury)Snadden, W M.TELLERS FOR THE NOES:
Morrison, Rt. Hon. W S. (Cirencester)Spearman, ACMCommander Agnew and
Neven-Spence, Sir BSpence, H RMajor Ramsay.
Nicholson, GStanley, Rt Hon. O

Lords Amendment: In page 7, line 28, at end, insert:

"and shall include a statement of the salaries or fees and of the emoluments of each of the members of the Commission during that year."

Motion made, and Question proposed, "That this House doth agree with the Lords in the said Amendment."

I do not see why I should not thank the Minister for putting into the Bill something which I think improves it. It is a very good thing that the public should have a right to know what emoluments and payments are being made to the members of the Commission; and it is the duty of someone to thank the Government for having accepted this Amendment, which is rather unusual for this Government.

Question put, and agreed to.