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Marriage Act, 1949 (Amendment) Bill

Volume 527: debated on Friday 21 May 1954

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As amended (in the Standing Committee), considered.

2.11 p.m.

I beg to move, "That the Bill be now read the Third time."

May I express my appreciation and thanks to the good people in the Standing Committee who helped my Bill go through, despite my absence owing to illness? I should particularly like to thank my hon. Friend the Member for Anglesey (Mr. C. Hughes) for piloting the Bill through Committee. There were a few drafting Amendments, and I am grateful to the office of the Registrar General and to the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Health for their kind suggestions. I should also like to thank the Parliamentary Secretary for the very kind words that he said about the Bill in Committee.

The Bill is now somewhat wider in scope than it was on Second Reading. I am a little dubious about that, but, at the same time, we, as Nonconformists, are very tolerant and we have, therefore, accepted what is now in Clause 2. I should like to issue this warning—and I feel certain that it will be echoed by the Parliamentary Secretary—that it ought to be clearly understood that this provision does not give a free licence with regard to the registration of places of worship.

I would say, in conclusion, that so far there has not been a letter of opposition from anybody, and I hope that this will be a most acceptable New Year's present on 1st January, 1955.

Question put, and agreed to.

Bill accordingly read the Third time, and passed.