Skip to main content

Educational Charities In England And Wales

Volume 897: debated on Saturday 16 August 1975

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

Lords amendment: No. 54, after Clause 74, in page 46, line 3, at end insert the following Clause D:

"(1) This section applies to any trust deed or other instrument—
  • (a) which concerns property applicable for or in connection with the provision of education in any establishment in paragraphs 1 to 5 of the Table in section 22, and
  • (b) which in any way restricts the benefits available under the instrument to persons of one sex.
  • (2) If on the application of the trustees, or of the responsible body (as defined in section 22), the Secretary of State is satisfied that the removal or modification of the restriction would conduce to the advancement of education without sex discrimination, he may by order make such modifications of the instrument as appear to him expedient for removing or modifying the restriction, and for any supplemental or incidental purposes.
    (3) If the trust was created by gift or bequest, no order shall be made until 25 years after the date on which the gift or bequest took effect, unless the donor or his personal representatives, or the personal representatives of the testator, have consented in writing to the making of the application for the order.
    (4) The Secretary of State shall require the applicant to publish notice—
  • (a) containing particulars of the proposed order, and
  • (b) stating that representations may be made to the Secretary of State within a period specified in the notice.
  • (5) The period specified in the notice shall not be less than one month from the date of the notice.
    (6) The applicants shall publish the notice in such manner as may be specified by the Secretary of State, and the cost of any publication of the notice may be defrayed out of the property of the trust.
    (7) Before making the order the Secretary of State shall take into account any representations duly made in accordance with the notice.
    (8) This section does not apply in Scotland."

    I beg to move. That this House doth agree with the Lords in the said amendment.

    With this it will be convenient to take Lords Amendments No. 55 and 61.

    In response to an amendment moved during Report stage by my hon. Friend the Member for Welwyn and Hatfield (Mrs. Hayman), I said that the Government were sympathetic to the intention underlying the amendment which was concerned with charities, although for a number of reasons it could not be accepted as it stood. I said that the Government proposed to introduce an amendment relating to educational trusts, and the new clauses fulfil the undertakings that I then gave.

    The new clauses permit trustees of educational trusts whose objects are restricted to benefiting persons of one sex to apply to the Education Ministers for an order removing or modifying the restrictions so that the benefits can be made available to persons of the other sex. The Government believes that the new clauses are in accordance with the spirit of the Bill. They will enable, for example, trustees providing scholarships for men only to apply for approval to make them available also to women. They will also make it easier for the trustees of an independent single-sex school to move towards co-education.

    New Clause D relates to England and Wales. New Clause E is a separate clause relating only to Scotland and is designed to take account of the different legal framework governing educational charities in Scotland. Amendment No. 61 is consequential upon the new clause. The intention is that orders made under the new Clause D are not, with the exception of orders modifying enactments, to be subject to the procedural requirements of sub-sections (1) and (2) of Clause 76. In Scotland, schemes for the reorganisation of educational endowments under Part VI of the Education (Scotland) Act 1962 are normally made by statutory instrument unless they relate to a small endowment—that is, one with an annual value of less than £500—in which case a simplified procedure applies. Amendment No. 61 also ensures therefore that similar procedures apply to orders under new Clause E.

    Question put and agreed to.

    Subsequent Lords amendment agreed to.