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Commons Chamber

Volume 478: debated on Thursday 26 October 1950

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House Of Commons

Thursday. 26th October, 1950

The House met in the new Commons Chamber at a Quarter past Ten o'Clock.

Prayers were said by the CHAPLAIN TO THE SPEAKER (Rev. Prebendary CHRISTOPHER CHESHIRE); and a special prayer for the occasion was said by the DEAN OF WESTMINSTER (the Very Rev. ALAN DON), former CHAPLAIN TO THE SPEAKER, as follows:

O God, the Judge of all the earth, who hast been our refuge and strength from one generation to another, we humbly seek Thy blessing.
We praise Thee for the powers of mind and skill of hand that have gone to the building of this Chamber and for the generosity of many peoples in diverse lands whose gifts have beautified and enriched it.
We thank Thee for the goodly heritage bequeathed to us by those who in times past have served Thee in this place, and we pray that entering into their labour we may be found worthy guardians of the honour of this House.
Guide and control, we beseech Thee, our deliberations, making us so mindful of our trust that truth and righteousness, justice and liberty may ever flourish and abound, and the people of this Realm may find their perfect freedom in Thy service. And grant, that as we seek to know Thy will we may have patience to fulfil it, to Thy glory and the good of all mankind.
Hear us, O merciful Father, in heaven Thy dwelling place and when Thou hearest, forgive; for the sake of Him who is the only sure foundation of men and nations, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Welcome To Commonwealth Speakers

then took the Chair and said: Before I call on the Prime Minister to move a Motion, I should like, with the permission of the House, and as Speaker of the House of Commons, to welcome formally my fellow Speakers, Presiding Officers and representatives from overseas, as well as our guests from home, including Members of the war-time Parliament, the architect and some of the workmen who have rebuilt this Chamber.

I should explain that normally no one is admitted to the Galleries until we have finished our daily Prayers. They may well be called our family Prayers. But it is fitting on this unique occasion, seeing that we all belong to one great family of nations, that our Prayers this morning should be witnessed and shared by representatives from every part of our great Commonwealth family.

I should also explain that the Speaker's Chaplain, the Rev. Prebendary Cheshire, read our usual Prayers, but the Dean of Westminster, the Very Rev. Alan Don, read a Prayer specially composed for this ceremony of dedication. He was asked by me to do this because he was Speaker's Chaplain during the whole of the last war and also took part in the official laying of the foundation stone of this building. I feel that all Members of that war-time Parliament will approve of my choice.

Finally, may I, as your Speaker, welcome all my fellow Members back to their old home. It will seem new to many, but none the less it is our true home, for here have been fought, and will be fought, I trust, those Parliamentary battles which have so enhanced the fame of the British House of Commons. Our first act on coming home has been one of worship and of dedication and in all humbleness of heart I pray, "May the Almighty God bless our home."

I desire to move the Motion standing in my name and in the names of the right hon. Gentleman the Leader of the Opposition and the right hon. and learned Gentleman the Member for Montgomery (Mr. C. Davies). The Motion is as follows:

That this House welcomes the Speakers, Presiding Officers and other representatives of the countries of the British Commonwealth and Empire who have come from overseas to join in the ceremonies on the occasion of the opening of the new Chamber; expresses its thanks to their Legislatures and peoples for the generous gifts with which the Chamber is adorned; and assures them that their presence on this day will be a source of inspiration in the years to come.
It is a great honour to make the first speech in the new Chamber, and I am sure I am voicing the opinions of all of us in thanking you, Sir, for that welcome which you gave to your fellow Members. It is, I think, fitting that the Motion which I am moving should be wholly uncontroversial, for I am quite sure that every Member of this House is delighted that on this auspicious occasion we should have with us the representatives of so many countries of the British Common- wealth. I am sure also that, in approving this Motion, as I am sure right hon. and hon. Members will do, they will feel certain that they are representing the views of their constituents of all parties.

The 28 Legislatures whose Presiding Officers we welcome here today are scattered throughout the world in every continent. Some of the countries from which they come are small islands; others are great continents. They comprise men and women of many races, but they all belong to one great democratic family. Some of these Legislatures have long histories. The Tynwald of the Isle of Man goes back into the mists of time, and the Legislatures of some of the West Indian Islands and Gambia came into being in those stormy days of the Stuarts, when this Parliament was asserting the rights of the people. Others, such as that of Pakistan, have had but a few years of existence.

Whether young or old, whether situated in the tropics or the temperate zone, they all have a close family resemblance. In every one of them there is freedom of debate and the clash of opinions, and they all draw their inspiration from our history. They are all examples of the most successful method ever devised of combining effective government by the majority with full respect for the views of the minority. A Member of a Legislature of the British Commonwealth visiting a sister State and attending the Legislature at once feels at home. The procedure is familiar and he knows the rules of the game, whatever local variations there may be. We are glad that the Speakers and Presiding Officers from overseas will accompany you, Sir, and the Members of the House to Westminister Hall to attend His Majesty the King, the symbol of the unity of the Commonwealth and Empire.

In this House we are surrounded by the tokens of affection which have been sent from all over the Commonwealth to adorn our Chamber from no fewer than 45 different countries. You, Sir, are sitting in the Chair presented by Australia. The Serjeant at Arms sits in the chair which is the gift of Ceylon. The Table comes from Canada, the boxes from New Zealand, the chairs at the Table from South Africa, the Bar of the House from Jamaica. We pass through doors given by India and Pakistan. Chairs and tables, lamps and clocks, and many other articles of use and beauty, are reminders of the generosity of our fellow citizens in other lands.

The Motion assures our friends that their presence on this day will be an inspiration in years to come. This is indeed, a memorable occasion, and all of us who are privileged to be here this morning may count ourselves fortunate that, in the changes and chances of our Parliamentary life, this great event has found us representing here our respective constituencies. Today will indeed dwell in all our memories.

I beg to second the Motion.

In rising today at a somewhat mature time in my life to make my maiden speech in this House, I feel, Mr. Speaker, that I ought not to conceal from you that I have a past. I have many memories of the air space in which we sit, now enclosed afresh in its traditional garments; in fact, I think I was the last person to speak here until today, and I have a lively recollection of the support and stern enthusiasm with which my remarks were then received.

There has, no doubt, been some change in the seating arrangements, for, so far as my recollection serves, I sat on the other side of the House. The Prime Minister and his principal colleagues sat beside me there. It seemed to me a very good and satisfactory way of carrying on our affairs. But then came a loud explosion, or perhaps that explosion was later on. So many things happened at the time that it was a little difficult to keep track of them, and my recollection may well be at fault. Anyhow, here we all are again, and, if everything is not entirely to our liking, we have, at any rate, much to be thankful for.

The Prime Minister spoke of the Parliamentary systems shared in common by so many of us represented here, and how they combine the effective Government of the majority with full respect for the views of the minority. That certainly is a high ideal towards which we should all perseveringly strive.

I can also congratulate His Majesty's Government upon many features of the new Chamber which they have erected. When I think of all that lies above us, around us and beneath us, it seems to me that, so far as accommodation is con- cerned, His Majesty's Ministers have managed to combine in a singularly harmonious manner the greatest need of the greatest number with a reasonable preservation of the privileges of the deserving few.

It gives me great pleasure to support the Motion which the Prime Minister has commended to us in his admirable and eloquent speech. We are proud today to have with us the Speakers and representatives of so many famous States and Governments of the British Empire and Commonwealth of Nations. We rejoice that they are with us to see our phoenix rising again from its ashes, and we wish them all the same good luck should they at any time be exposed to similar vicissitudes.

There is no doubt that the assembly of the Speakers of so many free and fairly elected Parliaments on this historic occasion shows a new link of unity and mutual comprehension which has sprung into being in our worldwide society and family. It is our hope, Sir, which perhaps we may be pardoned for expressing upon an occasion for rejoicing such as this, that the tolerant, flexible, yet enduring relationship which binds us all together by ties which none could put on paper but are dear to all, may some day be expanded to cover all the peoples and races of the world in a sensible, friendly and unbreakable association, and so give mankind, for the first time, their chance of enjoying the personal freedom which is their right and the material wellbeing which science and peace can so easily place at their disposal.

This is a moment, Sir, of deep emotion to every one of us here assembled this morning, and it is significant that the first matter which comes before us in this new Chamber is a Motion relating to the countries who form the British Commonwealth of Nations. It marks, as the Prime Minister and the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Woodford (Mr. Churchill) have already observed, the close ties of relationship, of friendship and affection which bind us together as one people. Differences of race, creed or colour do not divide us, but rather they serve to emphasise the nature and the strength of our unity. The intangible family ties, almost indefinable, which unite us. grow stronger as the member nations grow out- wardly more independent. It is almost a paradox, for it seems that the greater the individual independence, the greater is the mutual dependence.

We are deeply grateful to all these Governments, Legislatures and peoples for their timely and generous gifts, now part of our Chamber, which will remind future generations of the unity of all these peoples dwelling in the five continents of the world, and will recall that we stood together as one in time of peril when the freedom of man was threatened.

We are also grateful, Sir, to the Speakers, the Presiding Officers and other representatives of those countries for coming here to join with us in celebrating the opening of this our Chamber. We, the Members of this House, extend to each and all of them that warmth of welcome that the best of mothers extends to her splendid and affectionate children.

Mr. Speaker, I am deeply conscious of the time-limit which you have so admirably imposed upon all of us on this occasion. Indeed, a little bird has whispered in my ear that some hon. Members on the back benches would be quite glad if that time-limit could be permanently imposed, because it would greatly increase the opportunity of those hon. Members to catch your eye.

I am honoured to speak on this historic and unique occasion in the dual capacity of Father of the House and Chairman of the Select Committee on the Rebuilding of the House, and as one who has visited often, and has many friends in, four Dominions and who has been to a number of Colonies, I warmly join in the welcome to our overseas friends. One thing which we could not and did not foresee in our deliberations in the Select Committee is the extraordinary profusion and value of gifts from Commonwealth and Empire Legislatures for the new Chamber.

It is as has already been said, a value of great magnitude, not only physical but in sentiment, for these 45 countries of the Commonwealth have an immense variety of population, constitution and point of view, and these gifts symbolise the uniqueness of the Commonwealth principle of unity in diversity; uniqueness, at any rate, today, because I for one cannot contemplate at this moment the nations of U.N.O. presenting as a joint gift a President's Chair to Premier Stalin or a set of books on Magna Carta and the Bill of Rights to the Congressional Library in Washington.

Sir, as you have observed, this is a great and unique family occasion, and I should like to conclude my observations by saying, in my capacity as the Father of the House, "Long may the Commonwealth family flourish."

Question put, and agreed to nemine contradicente.

Resolved:

That this House welcomes the Speakers, Presiding Officers and other representatives of the countries of the British Commonwealth and Empire who have come from overseas to join in the ceremonies on the occasion of the opening of the new Chamber; expresses its thanks to their Legislatures and peoples for the generous gifts with which the Chamber is adorned and assures them that their presence on this day will be a source of inspiration in the years to come.

Sitting suspended until 2.45 p.m.

Address To His Majesty

Mr. SPEAKER and the House proceeded to Westminster Hall to attend HIS MAJESTY The King, with an Address.

Mr. SPEAKER was accompanied by the following Speakers and Presiding Officers of Commonwealth Legislatures:

CANADA—Hon. W. Ross Macdonald, K.C., M.P.

AUSTRALIAN COMMONWEALTH —Hon. A. G. Cameron, M.P.

NEW ZEALAND—Hon. M. H. Oram, M.P.

UNION OF SOUTH AFRICA—Hon. J. F. T. Naudé, M.P.

INDIA—Hon. G. V. Mavalankar, M.P.

PAKISTAN—Hon. Mr. Tamizuddin Khan, M.C.A.

CEYLON—Hon. Sir A. F. Molamure, K.B.E., M.P.

SOUTHERN RHODESIA—Hon. Sir Allan Welsh.

NORTHERN IRELAND—Rt. Hon. Sir Norman Stronge, Bt., M.C., M.P.

BAHAMAS—Hon. Asa H. Pritchard, M.H.A.

BARBADOS—Hon. K. N. R. Husbands, M.H.A.

BERMUDA—Hon. J. W. Cox, C.B.E., M.H.A.

GAMBIA—Hon. P. Wyn Harris, C.M.G., M.B.E., M.L.C.

GOLD COAST—Hon. E. C. Quist, O.B.E., M.L.C.

BRITISH GUIANA—Hon. C. V. Wight, C.B.E., M.L.C.

BRITISH HONDURAS—Dr. the Hon. W. A. George, M.L.C.

JAMAICA—Hon. C. C. Campbell, M.H.R.

KENYA—Hon. W. K. Horne, M.L.C.

FEDERATION OF MALAYA—Sir Henry Gurney, K.C.M.G.

MAURITIUS—Hon. Sir Hilary Blood, K.C.M.G., M.L.C.

NIGERIA—Hon. Sir John Macpherson, K.C.M.G., M.L.C.

NORTHERN RHODESIA—Hon. T. S. Page, C.B.E., M.L.C.

SINGAPORE—Hon. Sir Franklin Gimson, K.C.M.G., M.L.C.

TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO—Hon. A. R. W. Robertson, C.B.E., M.L.C.

WINDWARD ISLANDS—Hon. T. A. Marryshow, C.B.E., M.L.C.

ISLE OF MAN—Hon. J. D. Qualtrough, C.B.E., M.H.K.

GUERNSEY—Sir Ambrose Sherwill, C.B.E., M.C.

JERSEY—Sir Alexander Coutanche.

The Address from the House of Commons, presented by Mr. SPEAKER, was in the following words:

Most Gracious Sovereign,

We Your Majesty's most dutiful and loyal subjects the Commons of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland in Parliament assembled humbly beg leave to offer to Your Majesty our most hearty thanks for the arrangements which Your Majesty was pleased to ( make with the most willing assent of the House of Lords) for our accommodation in Your Palace of Westminster since the destruction of the House of Commons nine years ago. We also tender our most grateful thanks to Your Majesty for having caused the rebuilding, on the same site, of that Chamber in Your Palace of Westminster which was allocated for the use of the Commons by Your Royal Predecessor Queen Victoria nearly a hundred years ago and which was destroyed by the malice of Your enemies in 1941.

In that dark time, when almost ah Europe lay beneath the heel of the conqueror, Your Majesty's peoples stood firmly together and freely shed their blood in the cause of democratic freedom. In this same generous spirit those Peoples have given lavishly of the natural products of their soil and of their own skill and industry to brighten and adorn the new Chamber which You have set apart for our use.

We thank Your Majesty for the gracious message directing us to occupy the new Chamber on Thursday the 26th day of October and for the arrangements which have enabled the Speakers, Presiding Officers or their deputies of so many countries of the Commonwealth and Empire to be present on this occasion.

in all humility we trust that with God's help our deliberations in our new Chamber may result in securing the peace, well being and happiness not only of our own people and the peoples of the Commonwealth but of all the peoples of the world.

His Majesty's Reply

His Majesty's Most Gracious Reply to the Addresses from both Houses was as follows:

My Lords and Members of the House of Commons:

I thank you for the loyal and dutiful Addresses which on your behalf the Lord Chancellor and Mr. Speaker have presented to Me.

I am glad to be here today and to congratulate the Members of the House of Commons on the rebuilding of their Chamber. I look back with pride and gratitude to the part that Parliament played when this country was in danger. True to its function of expressing the will and spirit of my people, the House of Commons continued with unshakeable courage and high purpose to fulfil its duties despite the bombing of its home. The destruction of the Chamber in which it had met for so many years was not allowed to inter-

rupt our Parliamentary Government. When the peoples of our Commonwealth of Nations stood alone, the spirit of a free people ensured the maintenance of our system of Government. May it always continue to stand for those great and permanent realities expressed in our way of life, whatever the strains and stresses we have to endure.

The new Chamber has been built as far as possible in the form of the old. There is a traditional intimacy about our legislative Chambers which is very characteristic of Parliamentary life in our land. It suggests a close and almost homely place of discussion and taking counsel, as if it derived some of its virtue from the family circle. I am glad to know that this feature has been preserved in the new building. I congratulate the architect who designed the Chamber and all the men and women who have taken part in its building and furnishing: its decoration and fittings are outstanding examples of our skill and craftsmanship in wood and metal and stone.

This Chamber, in a sense, belongs to our great family of nations, for it is adorned and enriched by generous gifts from all over the Commonwealth.

I am happy to welcome here today the Speakers of the Legislatures throughout the British Commonwealth. Their presence makes this a symbolic occasion of untold value. Of all the bonds which unite my peoples none is stronger than our common devotion to the ideals of freedom, justice and toleration which, in the political sphere, find their supreme expression in our Parliamentary system. These ideals have been evolved, tried, and enriched through the long process of our history. They were born, and have grown to maturity, here in Westminster. It is a proud day when we welcome here in the very cradle of our Parliamentary institutions, representatives of the Legislatures of the other territories, great and small, united in the Commonwealth, to rejoice with us at the opening of the new Chamber of the House of Commons. Here they can see another of the links which unite us. For the symbols and procedure of our various Legislatures are to all intents and purposes identical. Although my peoples vary in race, language and tradition, the spirit of our Parliamentary system permeates every legislative assembly in the Commonwealth.

This new Chamber will stand as a sign to the world of our faith in freedom, of our confidence in the permanence of our common ideals, and of the ties flexible yet firm which hold together the peoples of our Commonwealth, and unite in brotherhood the freedom-loving peoples of all nations. For freedom finds expression in this Palace of Westminster, where free men and women can speak in accordance with the dictates of their consciences, yet with that saving grace of humour and readiness to understand the point of view of others which has ever been typical of our race. Not for us the silence of suppression. In other places liberty has perished, but the voice of true democracy is still heard among all our peoples and is a comfort to all those who love, and believe in, the unfettered expression of honest opinions, noble aspirations and sincere human feelings.

This is our heritage. May all those who shall serve their Country in the new Commons Chamber strive to maintain and uphold those great and enduring principles on which our political ideals are based. May they, in their work, be an inspiration and example to all throughout the world to whom our way of life stands as a guiding light at a time when it is opposed by the dark counsels of materialism and tyranny. May this Chamber long stand to shape the destinies of My people at home, and may the blessing of Almighty God for all time rest upon it and all who labour in it.

The House resumed at a Quarter to Three o'clock.

Messages From The King

The VICE-CHAMBERLAIN OF THE HOUSEHOLD (Mr. POPPLEWELL) reported His Majesty's Answers to Addresses, as follows:

" have received your Addresses praying that the Supplies and Services

( Transitional Powers) Act, 1945, the various Defence Regulations and enactments which you specify, and the provisions of the Shops Act, 1950, which have effect only as respects the winter months, be continued in force respectively for a further period of one year until the tenth day of December, nineteen hundred and fifty-one.

I will give directions accordingly."

"I have received your Addresses praying that the Patents (Extension of Period) Emergency Order, 1950, and the Registered Designs (Extension of Period) Emergency Order, 1950, be made in the form of the respective drafts laid before Parliament.

I will comply with your request."

Mr. SPEAKER reported that the House had been to Westminster Hall to deliver a dutiful Address to His Majesty, and read His Majesty's reply.

Royal Assent

Message to attend the Lords Commissioners to hear the Royal Assent to Acts passed by both Houses and to declare the Prorogation of Parliament.

The House went; and having returned

I have to acquaint the House that the House has been to the House of Peers, where a Commission under the Great Seal was read, giving the Royal Assent to the following Acts:

  • 1. Allotments Act, 1950.
  • 2. Army Reserve Act, 1950.
  • 3. Air Force Reserve Act, 1950.
  • 4. Housing (Scotland) Act, 1950.
  • 5. Food Drugs (Milk Dairies and Artificial Cream) Act, 1950.
  • 6. Diseases of Animals Act, 1950.
  • 7. Maintenance Orders Act, 1950.
  • 8. Allotments (Scotland) Act, 1950.
  • 9. Public Utilities Street Works Act, 1950.
  • 10. Bath Extension Act, 1950.
  • Prorogation

    (standing in the Clerk's place at the Table): I have further to acquaint the House that The LORD CHANCELLOR, being one of the Royal Commissioners, delivered His Majesty's most Gracious Speech to both Houses of Parliament, in pursuance of His Majesty's Command, as follows:

    My Lords and Members of the House of Commons:

    The increase in production, which is vital to the economic progress of the country, is most encouraging. At the same time, there has been continued restraint in claims for increases in personal incomes of all kinds, The efforts which My People have made, not without sacrifices, have enabled us to maintain a healthy internal economy and to achieve a great improvement in the balance of overseas trade, notably with North America. Generous help from the United States of America and Canada has also continued to strengthen the general economic life of the country.

    My Government have fully supported the United Nations' measures to combat the unprovoked aggression launched upon the Republic of Korea on 25th June, and My Forces are contributing by land, sea and in the air to the action now being taken in Korea by members of the United Nations in pursuance of the recommendations of the Security Council.

    My Government, together with other friendly Powers, have also presented to the United Nations proposals for an ultimate settlement of a unified, independent and democratic Korea. These proposals have been approved by an overwhelming majority of member states gathered together in the General Assembly.

    My Government have continued to play a prominent part in the economic and social activities of the United Nations, conscious of the great contribution which higher standards of living can make to the maintenance of peace and order in all parts of the world.

    My Government, in association with other Governments signatory to the North Atlantic Treaty, have contributed to the strengthening of the Treaty Organisation by the appointment of a permanent body of Deputies to the Foreign Ministers. Together with these Governments they are initiating an urgent programme of production to ensure the adequate defence of the North Atlantic area. They acknowledge the powerful support which the United States of America are giving to the efforts of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation to maintain greater security in this region.

    My Government have taken two important steps towards peace and stability in the Middle East. In April they granted de jure recognition to the Government of Israel together with the simultaneous recognition of the union with the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan of that part of Palestine which is under Jordan control. In May My Government, with the Governments of France and the United States of America, jointly issued the tripartite statement concerning the stability of the Middle East.

    In August this year the Consultative Assembly of the Council of Europe began its second session. I shall continue to follow with interest this new and important development in international co-operation.

    Together with the Governments of France and the United States, My Government have continued to work for the closer association of the German Federal Republic with the Western community of nations. I welcome both the accession of the Federal Republic as an associate member of the Council of Europe and the conclusions regarding Germany which the Foreign Ministers of the three Governments reached at their conference last month in New York.

    In the economic field, My Government continue to collaborate to the full in the work of the Organisation for European Economic Co-operation.

    I welcome the establishment of the European Payments Union which will enable the Organisation to facilitate trade and payments among its members.

    It is gratifying that the countries participating in the international discussions on tariffs and trade have elected to hold their meetings in this country.

    My Ministers in the United Kingdom welcomed the invitation of My Ministers in Australia to attend a meeting in Sydney in May to discuss with other Commonwealth Governments plans for the economic development of South and South-East Asia; My Government were hosts to further meetings in London in September at which countries in South-East Asia outside the Commonwealth were represented.

    Discussions have also been held in London between My Ministers in the United Kingdom and Ministers from Commonwealth countries overseas, which have afforded a valuable opportunity for an exchange of views on general trade and economic questions.

    The visit of the President of the French Republic and Madame Auriol in March was an occasion of great pleasure to The Queen and myself and further strengthened the bonds of friendship between our two Peoples.

    My Forces continue to assist the peoples of Malaya and the Civil Administration in their task of restoring law and order.

    Important steps have been taken to bring about a rapid improvement in the size and efficiency of My Forces, whose rates of pay have been substantially increased. I have given My Assent to a measure extending to two years the period of whole-time National Service.

    My Government in Canada have undertaken to train pilots and navigators of the Royal Air Force in Royal Canadian Air Force establishments. This measure of co-operation, which will materially help to advance training, has been warmly welcomed by My Government in the United Kingdom.

    Members of the House of Commons:

    I thank you for the provision which you have made for the public services.

    My Lords and Members of the House of Commons:

    I have received your Addresses praying for the continuance for a further period of one year of certain emergency powers and will give effect to your wishes.

    Over a large part of the country unusually bad weather has robbed farmers and the nation of the full fruits of what had promised to be a bountiful harvest, and they and their workers are to be commended for their unfailing courage and skill in fighting this adversity.

    Legislation has been passed to help the provision and use of allotments throughout Great Britain.

    Provision has been made for tem porary assistance to the white fish industry pending the introduction of permanent legislation.

    A comprehensive development plan for the Highlands and Islands of Scotland has been laid before you.

    A Committee has been appointed to enquire into the financial and economic relationships between Scotland and the rest of the United Kingdom.

    The Council for Wales and Monmouthshire have continued to do useful work and have recently submitted a valuable report.

    The Medical Acts have been amended so as to ensure that, from a day to be appointed, medical practitioners shall have had experience in hospitals or other approved institutions before they are finally registered, and so as to improve the constitution and procedure of the General Medical Council.

    I have assented to legislation which, by enabling wife maintenance, guardianship of infants and adoption orders to be made and enforced throughout the United Kingdom, will relieve much hardship and give a remedy to many women who have hitherto been barred from the exercise of their just claims.

    My Ministers have continued to develop the organisation of the Civil Defence Services.

    My Ministers have taken steps to impress upon all industries the need to help men to return to civil employment after service in the Regular Forces and I am gratified at the measure of response so far received.

    Legislation has been passed giving further encouragement to transfers of industrial undertakings to the Development Areas.

    Measures have been passed to provide a uniform code for regulating the breaking-up of streets by public utility undertakings and to empower highway authorities to place and maintain cattle-grids in highways.

    I have assented to a Bill to provide relief from the hardship suffered by some owners and occupiers of small dwelling-houses which are damaged by coal-mining subsidence.

    An Act has been passed for further promoting the revision of the Statute Law and the publication of Revised Editions of Statutes; progress has also been made in the consolidation of Statute Law.

    I pray that the blessing of Almighty God may attend you.

    Then a Commission for Proroguing the Parliament was read:

    After which The LORD CHANCELLOR said:

    "My Lords and Members of the House of Commons:

    By virtue of His Majesty's Commission, under the Great Seal, to us and other Lords directed, and now read, we do, in His Majesty's Name and in obedience to His Majesty's Commands, prorogue this Parliament to Tuesday, the Thirty-first day of October, One Thousand, Nine Hundred and Fifty to be then here holden; and this Parliament is accordingly prorogued until Tuesday, the Thirty-first day of October, One Thousand, Nine Hundred and Fifty."

    End of the First Session (opened 1st March, 1950) of the Thirty-ninth Parliament of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, in the Fourteenth Year of the Reign of His Majesty King George the Sixth.