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Volume 892: debated on Wednesday 14 May 1975

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asked the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will pay an official visit to Edinburgh.

As my hon. Friend must be aware, scarcely a week goes by without my being in Edinburgh on official business. I shall next be there on Friday.

We are grateful to my right hon. Friend for his continued presence and interest in Edinburgh. Will he be willing on one of his visits to Edinburgh to meet some of the many residents who have written to me urging support for the reform of the Scottish divorce law, particularly the two residents who later came to see me to ask whether they should wait for this House to make up its mind or move to England to qualify for a divorce there? Will he explain to them why the English Home Office is willing to take over a Private Member's Bill to stop cruelty to hares but the Scottish Office has still not found time to reform laws that cause misery to humans?

My hon. Friend spoke to me this week about a visit to Edinburgh but he did not mention divorce. I am always willing to consider the desirability or otherwise of meeting organisations. I cannot meet all those who would like me to meet them. As a Member of Parliament, I have received no letters on the subject. As Secretary of State, I have received 24 letters from individuals and four from organisations. I appreciate my hon. Friend's concern and frustration over his Private Member's Bill being obstructed, and I hope that this week the hon. Gentleman who is doing that obstruction will have a change of heart.