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Clause 31

Volume 978: debated on Wednesday 13 February 1980

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

EDUCATION EXPENDITURE AND RATE SUPPORT GRANT

I beg to move amendment No. 88, in page 29, line 20, at end insert—

  • '(5) The Minister shall not make regulations under section 31 and Schedule 6 to this Act before he has consulted an Advanced Further Education Commission as set out in subsection (6) below.
  • (6) An Advanced Further Education Commission shall be set up, consisting of not less than 25 persons whom the Secretary of State shall appoint, after consulting bodies representing local authorities, governing bodies of further education institutions, principals of such institutions, and teachers and students in such institutions.'.
  • The last amendment that we debated concerned the small matter of £20 million. Even though that will place a major imposition on parents, the amendment I now move concerns £375 million. As we lost the last amendment by only 23 votes, we can confidently expect to win this one, given its additional importance.

    The great sadness attached to this debate is that, because of the guillotine, we did not have the opportunity to discuss clause 31 in committee. Indeed, the only contribution was a learned one from my hon. Friend the Member for Lewisham, West (Mr. Price), who is one of the four people in the country who understands the mechanism for the capping of the pool. We concluded our Committee sittings when my hon. Friend was on his feet speaking on this matter. It is an issue of considerable importance and I hope that in the course of this short debate the Minister will provide some answers.

    We want to stress the need that is widely felt for accepting this amendment, which requires the establishment of an advanced further education commission in order to deal with finance in the advanced further education sector.

    We hope that the Minister will accept the amendment, because every representative body in advanced further education has endorsed the recommendation of the Oakes committee, which was chaired so ably by my right hon. Friend the Member for Widnes (Mr. Oakes) when he was Minister of State, Department of Education and Science. Not only has the recommendation received endorsement and agreement from that source, it has been supported by all the representative bodies of students, teachers and other workers in the advanced further education sector.

    At the beginning of this year the council of local education authorities met and, in the absence of any kind of undertaking from the Minister that he would set up the AFEC, it decided to form a crypto AFEC of its own to manage what might otherwise be a totally unmanageable area of educational expenditure which will be subject directly to the whim of Governments and to no other influence.

    I know that the Minister has the greatest respect for the judgments of local education authorities and a close interest in advanced further education. Therefore, it is difficult to understand how someone with such a commitment and experience has been so far unable to give an undertaking that the AFEC will be set up. I hope it is not that the ideological commitment of both the Under-Secretary and the Secretary of State is so inflexible that they consider the AFEC to be yet another quango and consequently they plan to avoid the recommendation of the Oakes committee. There must be more profound reasons, and I hope that we shall hear them tonight.

    The Oakes committee intended to promote efficiency and equity in local government finance and in educational provision in the advanced further education sector. The capping system proposed by the Oakes committee was systematic and fair. It met the financial needs of advanced further education. It gratified the interests of local education authorities that do not have institutions of advanced further education within their boundaries and it provided a reasonable procedure for local education authorities that have such institutions in their areas.

    In order to meet those needs, and in order to gratify and to provide for those interests, it was necessary that the national body should be set up. An advanced further education commission—or a similar body with a different title—is a prerequisite of the efficiency and equity which characterised the recommendations of the Oakes report, and which has commanded the support of all bodies of opinion and representation concerned with furtther education. It is necesary because it is the only means of effectively ensuring that we have the proper management, control, co-ordination and opportunity for improvement of provision in the polytechnics and colleges of further and higher education.

    The system adopted by the Government, of appointing a person, however well-intentioned, talented and knowledgeable, to sit in the Department of Education and Science and, by the use of the Civil Service mechanism, perform the task which should be performed—according to the Oakes recommendations—by a national body that is representatative of local authorities and other interests in advanced further education does not provide an adequate substitute.

    In place of the widely supported and gradual means of rationalising and managing the finance of advanced further education, the Government now offer a crude mechanism—the proposal contained in clause 31 of the Bill. It has been outlined by the Under-Secretary of State in public, but, as far as I know, never in Parliament. It is not a system of control or co-ordination. It is a vehicle for cuts—and it is an extremely crude and blunt system of performing those cuts. It involves financial cuts of great severity, so much so that they jeopardise the existence not only of courses, but of some institutions in the advanced further education sector. It would also lead to curriculum cuts. That is a matter of particular sensitivity, especially in the advanced further education sector.

    If the hon. Gentleman and his right hon. and learned Friend the Secretary of State were looking for a sector that would meet the technological and scientific demands of the country, they would be well recommended to look at the advanced further education sector, among other places. However, because of the system they propose, one college of further education—I shall not name it because it will cause undue alarm, but if the hon. Gentleman would like the details in private later, I shall be happy to supply them—will have to meet cuts of 13 per cent. in the amount of money necessary to maintain its current provision. In another college the cuts will be 17 per cent. Kingston polytechnic will have to meet cuts of 10 per cent., Newcastle polytechnic, 10 per cent., Leicester polytechnic, 10 per cent. and Middlesex polytechnic, 9 per cent. The city of Manchester college of higher education—which has the delightful title "Comanche"—will have to meet cuts of 7·5 per cent. These are in relation to total available facilities of £10 million to £12 million. Cuts of that nature are not shavings off a great fat body but they are cuts straight through the flesh and into the bone at the level of 10 per cent.

    It is an interesting development in a new era of Select Committees that we are having a debate on the Floor of the House immediately after a Select Committee has taken evidence this morning from the committee of directors of polytechnics. Is my hon. Friend aware that it was made clear that the average 10 per cent. cut was only a basic cut? On top of that cut, the matter of overseas students' fees turns a basic 10 per cent. cut into a cut of 16 per cent., 17 per cent., 18 per cent. or even 19 per cent. in individual institutions.

    My hon. Friend has done me and the House a service by enabling me to abbreviate my remarks. He has referred to a point that I was about to make. The basic cuts in the very nature of education generally, but specifically in higher education—because of the wide dispersal of courses and the small number of staff in some of those courses—can begin as cuts of 10 per cent. and, because of the multiplier effect, can easily end up as cuts of 15 per cent. or 17 per cent.

    It was proposed that a 6 per cent. cut be made in the case of the universities. The effect of that will be to produce a 10 per cent. cut in the finances available and in the number of courses available to students. The position is exactly the same in the advanced further education sector and, indeed, in the maintained sector.

    ; Will my hon. Friend agree that these cuts—never mind the initial finance—will be more adverse in terms of their engineering and technical potential?

    My hon. Friends are greatly helping me. I hope that my speech is not that stereotyped and that all they are doing is to endorse the fact that there is a central argument to be made. It is a very simple argument and has been made by the National Association of Teachers in Further and Higher Education and by the other bodies representing polytechnic teachers, by the Association of Scientific, Engineering and Managerial Staffs, by the National Union of Students, and by the Standing Conference of Principals and Directors of Institutions and Colleges of Higher Education, a conference of which body the Under-Secretary of State addressed while I attended it. All those bodies have put forward the straightforward argument that I have been making, although obviously in more detail, and covering the point raised by my hon. Friend the Member for Burnley (Mr. Jones), my hon. Friend the Member for Lewisham, West and everybody else interested in this area.

    The greatest irony of all in regard to the cuts is that it is the institutions that have been most obedient to previous bouts of public expenditure restraint that will suffer most. So crude and so blunt is the Government's proposition in clause 31 that the virtue that these institutions have shown in complying with previous demands for cutbacks in the use of finance demands has meant that they are the ones that will suffer most. In addition to the crudity of the Government's mechanism—I suppose that we dignify what they are doing even by the use of the term mechanism—there is the fact that, as my hon. Friend the Member for Burnley clearly recognised, these are institutions with a very strong vocational orientation and a very strong commitment to technology, to science and to the industrial arts.

    In a country that is daily being reminded of its increasing dependence on imports and of the way in which it lags behind in so many technological and scientific races, for a blow to be dealt at the very base of our means of shortening the distances between ourselves and other industrial nations is lunacy of the most profound nature. It is being committed at a time when we have a Government who earnestly remind us at frequent intervals of the need to encourage the development of our scientific and technological education and training.

    The further bad news, as has already been suggested, is that the effect of the Government's proposals to increase the fees in the advanced further education sector, as in every other higher educational sector, and to charge full cost fees for overseas students, will mean that in addition to the blows resulting from the crude cuts wrought by clause 31, there will be increasingly a dramatic fall in the number of overseas students seeking places in advanced further education in Britain, with the additional and crucial loss of the revenue necessary to keep those institutions viable.

    10 pm

    Taking together the way in which the Government are cutting the commitment of finance to the advanced further education sector and the impact of the reduction of overseas students, because of the full-cost fees strategy, it is clear that the Government are dealing a mortal blow to some courses and institutions and a deep wound to the provision of advanced further education in this country.

    The Council of Local Education Authorities has already offered the Government a way out. It has approved an arrangement under which it would set up what The Times Higher Education Supplement calls a "crypto-Oakes"—a rather indelicate description, but not a bad suggestion for the Under-Secretary to follow.

    We cannot help thinking that nothing of which we warn in the advanced further education sector is occurring by accident. It is not because of the haste with which the Government have approached the question that we are left with these difficulties. It may be because of the way in which the Under-Secretary has expressed himself that our suspicion, which is shared by many others in advanced further education, is well-founded.

    For example, the Under-Secretary has said:

    "We are looking at the rationalisation of all courses in higher education. The universities are doing their study now and this will be done for the maintained sector as well."

    If the hon. Gentleman were speaking as a convinced missionary on behalf of the Oakes proposal, we would recognise that as a benign attitude, as a matter of need and as a way of carefully husbanding the country's resources while seeing that we

    got the best value for money out of the higher and advanced further education sectors so that the interests of local education authorities, students and staffs in the institutions could be served.

    But we have to conclude that, given the example and the argument of Oakes and the consensus in support of Oakes, any Government who choose to recognise and follow neither must have not a benign, but a malign, reason for coming to that conclusion.

    This is a technical matter which does not arouse strong political passions. Therefore, there would be no purpose in my using hyperbole unless it were justified, but on the basis of what I have heard from the Under-Secretary, at the conference to which I referred and from the odd quotations that drop from his lips, we can come to no conclusion other than that in the absence of an undertaking to accept our amendment or to change their attitude and introduce an amendment meeting the demands raised by our amendment, the Government are not serious about wanting to sustain advanced further education or meeting their obligations to local education authorities.

    I plead with the Under-Secretary to recognise that many of Britain's industrial needs can be met only by the development of the advanced further education sector. There can be no benefit for education, the economy or the opportunities for the young people of this country if the responsibility for setting up an advanced further education body is not met.

    I have received a letter from a lecturer at the Croydon college of technology, who tells me that the college

    "is being forced to make real cuts for 1980–81, of £100,000. This will mean, for example, that something like a 7 per cent. cut will be made on the teaching of A-level science subjects. This is in spite of Carlisle's"—

    an irreverent reference to the Secretary of State—

    "statement that a 'modest expansion' in further education was contemplated."

    Did I hear the Under-Secretary of State say that he expected that from a polytechnic lecturer?

    No. I think that courtesy is a virtue that we should have on both sides of the House. If the writer cannot use the form "Mr. Carlisle" or "the right hon. Mark Carlisle", that may be relevant to the validity of the rest of what he says.

    I realise that the hour is late, and the hon. Gentleman may be a little tetchy, having lost so many arguments in the past two days.

    I never expected to have to characterise the hon. Gentleman as a parliamentary bully, but those were the words of a parliamentary bully: "We might have lost the argument, but we have not lost a vote." I never expected to hear that from the hon. Gentleman, but it is duly recorded. I shall take special pleasure in sending a copy of the Hansard report of today's proceedings to that Croydon college, so that the staff can read the hon. Gentleman's comments.

    It must be later than we thought. If we were to have to be here until 2 am, as we were this morning, goodness knows what the hon. Gentleman would be getting up to. I know that his interruption is at least partly inspired by the fact that he is desperate to respond to the debate and give an undertaking that the Government will proceed along the course that I have asked.

    I hope that the hon. Gentleman will answer a few other questions. What will be the total amount of the advanced further education pool for the financial year 1980–81? How does this compare with the total for the last financial year for which figures are available? That is probably 1978–79. The figures will not yet be available for the most recent year.

    What is the allocation of the pool to individual local authorities? What were the hon. Gentleman's estimates of the individual local authorities' claims upon the pool?

    If the hon. Gentleman can answer those questions, it will have been a useful debate, but we would much prefer a full and well-deserved reward, not for ourselves but for those engaged in advanced further education, in the form of an assurance about their future, the curriculum that they provide and the future of the students for whom they care.

    It is a characteristic of our debates that when we discuss £20 million the Benches are full, the officials' box is full, the whole House is full of heat and yet there are abstentions. We even see strange faces in our lobby. But when we discuss £375 million the Chamber empties and not one functionary decides to serve the Department. I see that two are now arriving. Professor Parkinson and others have commented on this phenomenon that afflicts us in public affairs.

    Owing to a curious arrangement of the guillotine, under which time was very limited for the discussion of the question of transport, we suddenly seem to be able to discuss this subject at our leisure, and it is worth devoting a moment or two to it.

    We now have a system of Select Committees that can examine, in detail, complicated matters that hitherto have flowed through Standing Committee with no scrutiny whatever. I am sorry that when the Government, rightly and properly, introduced Select Committees they did not at the same time introduce the Procedure Committee's recommendation that Standing Committees should be able to spend one, two or three sittings taking evidence from experts before proceeding to line-by-line consideration of a Bill. This subject, called capping the pool, which has nothing to do with what we were discussing last Friday and will be discussing again this Friday, is an esoteric subject—

    Regarding the Select Committee on procedure, is my hon. Friend aware that the Leader of the House has not ruled out such a procedure but those who observe these matters feel that he may be looking at it after the Bills on which it would be most appropriate have been given Second Readings in this first Session of this new Parliament?

    My hon. Friend the Member for Bedwellty (Mr. Kinnock) is sending to the staff and students of Croydon college of technology the Hansard report of this debate. I shall send a copy to the Leader of the House. This is a serious parliamentary point. It would have helped the Standing Committee on this Bill if it could have interviewed witnesses about the Bill's technical aspects before proceeding to debate the legislation.

    It is appropriate that we should be holding this debate on Report. When we reached this part of the Bill in Committee, I was discoursing on these matters but, because of the fall of the guillotine, the Under-Secretary of State did not have time to reply. Some words from the hon. Gentleman on Report would be apposite.

    The amendment seeks to insist that before the Under-Secretary makes regulations under the clause he should appoint a representative body of all the interests in the public sector of further and higher education rather than operate bureaucratically through his functionaries in the Department of Education and Science. We want open government, not closed government. It is important that the House should understand the issues.

    Before the general election, there took place nearly 18 months of detailed consultation with every interest in further and higher education—

    On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker. Will you terminate the subcommittee of two Welshmen so that hon. Members can deal adequately with this highly technical subject?

    If the hon. Members wish to speak to each other, they should do so in a whisper.

    No apology is necessary. Although my surname is well known in Wales, I am the only English Welshman in the House. It was a sub-committee of two. When two Welshmen are gathered together, who can stop them indulging in a sub-committee?

    The House should realise the effect of the Government's doctrinaire activities. For nearly 18 months before the general election, on a completely nonparty basis, all the interests involved had entered into difficult negotiations. The interests were difficult to reconcile—the local authorities, further education, metropolitan and county authorities, the people in the polytechnics and the Department itself. Eventually they reached agreement. Not everyone was wholly satisfied, but there was broad agreement with what the Oakes committee, as it was christened, had done. I am not sure of the wisdom of attaching names to these committees. Perhaps it would be better to give them a completely inanimate label—

    10.15 pm

    It was named after my right hon. Friend the Member for Widnes (Mr. Oakes). It seemed that whatever the result of the general election that committee would have been set up and been allowed to carry on its work as a sort of counterpart to the University Grants Cornmittee. Those who worked in polytechnics and other higher education institutes could then have known that the distribution of resources to them was carried out by their professional peers and colleagues as happened with the universities and the UGC.

    However, the election saw the victory of the most neurotic and manic Government for some time and their mania was against quangos, particularly quangos with the wrong names attached to them. A ludicrous decision was therefore taken, without consultation, to chop this quango so that the distribution of the £375 million should go unsupervised.

    I am not speaking for the Select Committee of which I am the Chairman and which is examining this matter. I believe personally that the Government will live to regret their decision. An extraordinary situation has arisen. When the Select Committee was appointed, we received a letter from the Secretary of State saying that he was very concerned about this issue. He was not seeking to dictate to us what we should do, since he recognised that we were an independent Committee, but he suggested that we might look at the whole system of applying broad subject guidelines to higher education and consider some sort of mechanism under which those guidelines might be implemented.

    We decided to accept that subject, although we had many other alternatives. Mr. Alan Thompson, the deputy secretary in charge of higher education in the Department, gave evidence to the Committee and he sketched out in rather greater detail—

    Order. The hon. Gentleman must not go into detail about what has happened in the Select Committee. It has not yet reported, so I hope he will not continue along that line.

    I take the point, Mr. Deputy Speaker. Although the activities of the Committee, which sat in public, were widely reported in the press and are common knowledge, I shall not take it further.

    We face a problem which must be overcome. Committees sit in public and newspapers report every word of their proceedings, but an antiquated rule prevents us from mentioning on the Floor of the House what happened in the Committee until a report has been placed on the Table.

    If my hon. Friend feels inhibited by the customs of the House, perhaps he will tell us of the visit he made to the DES to attend a seminar on capping the pool. We could usefully employ our time for the remainder of the debate hearing his instructive views of that experience.

    I shall not follow my hon. Friend down that road, except to say that if members of the assessment and performance unit had sat in on that seminar I believe that they would have made even more severe strictures than they recently made on mathematics teaching throughout the country.

    I wish to compare the responsible way in which the Secretary of State and the Department have approached this matter with the attitude of the hon. Member for Brent, North (Dr. Boyson) when he spoke to a conference of principals of higher education colleges and institutes just before Christmas. In what was obviously a prepared speech, he made the clear statement that it might be that no mechanism was necessary and the whole matter could be dealt with by the Department.

    The Minister made the point to me in Committee that there was a time difference between the two events. He said that his speech was made at the end of October and that the other event of which I have spoken took place later. Since few people are listening, perhaps the hon. Gentleman can be more frank than other Ministers have been. If there has been a change of heart and the Department is moving towards acceptance of the fact that there will have to be some mechanism of an Oakes committee sort, will the hon. Gentleman tell us about it? That would help everybody in the House, not least those members of the Select Committee who are struggling with these problems and who want to know the Department's present policy.

    I know that policy changes constantly, but I want to know whether the Department has reached a conclusion on this matter. Is it in favour of managing the matter wholely within the Department, or will it set up a broadly representative body to distribute money in the public sector of higher education? It is an important question because the capping of the pool imposes a severe cut on every college in the land.

    I fully understand the reason for cash limits being imposed on further education. The previous situation, which I liken to an .ever-fattening goldfish spin- ning out the water until it takes up all the space in the bowl, could not continue. Cash limits had to be imposed. However, once cash limits are imposed, one consequence is that the money must be distributed in a coherent fashion.

    The capping of the £375 million in the pool has, without any consideration of overseas students' fees or other consequences, involved something like a 10 per cent. cut in further and higher education institutions. There is no real quarrel about that in the institutions. However, following the cuts, we now have a new system of funding the cost of overseas students, about which there has been much discussion.

    Unless an institution recruits the same number of overseas students as it recruited last year, its income will be cut even further. No one knows how much will be involved and nobody can know until later in the year. Some polytechnics will have to find as much as £2½ million by October 1980, or October 1981 at the latest. Enormous savings have to be made, and the Government must give some guidance about where they should be made. Without such guidance there will be complete chaos. Courses which the country needs desperately will be cut and courses which are not needed will continue.

    We were given examples this morning in the Select Committee. The principal of Leicester polytechnic said that his knitwear engineering course could disappear by October 1981. Half of the students on that course come from overseas. There are few courses of that kind in Britain.

    There are two such courses in the country and it appears that one might be in jeopardy. The hon. Member should be accurate when referring to evidence given to a Select Committee.

    I do not wish to be inaccurate. Knitwear engineering is an example of a type of course, of which there are only two or three, which is in jeopardy. The Government should not simply stand back and watch what happens for two years, but that is exactly what they have decided to do. They are talking in terms of a £375 million capped pool. They say that they will fix the pool on the basis of a Treasury diktat. They do not intend to have consultation about what should be invested in higher education. Instead, someone will pull out a piece of paper from a bran tub. The means by which the figure is arrived at is shrouded in bureaucracy and is not subject to open government.

    The means by which the £375 million is to be distributed in the next two years is the worst of all possibilities. I am no great supporter of the University Grants Committee, but it tries to distribute its money in a coherent manner. It distributes it after consultation with the universities, local authorities and industry. The system has the confidence of the institutions.

    However, the money about which we are talking will be distributed on the basis of a balance between historical expenditure and forecast—on what institutions received last year and what they expect to receive next year. The House should pause and understand the implications. If in 1980 an institution such as that involved in teacher training is winding down, it will be given money that it does not need. The expenditure of other institutions, particularly in the development areas where new courses have been introduced, will be chopped and they will be unable to cope with the need.

    10.30 pm

    The great tradition of further education is that it has been immediately responsive to regional and national needs. If a course is needed, it is provided. If it is unnecessary, it is taken away. There is a degree of flexibility in the secondary education sector that does not exist in the higher education sector.

    If the capped pool is not overseen by some body such as the Oakes committee, the great danger is that public money—the distribution of which is meant to be supervised by the House—would be spent in ways that no one in the House would wish to defend. It would be spent in those ways simply because of the Government's obstinacy in scrapping an agreed procedure for the distribution of that money because they have an obsession about having no more quangos.

    I realise that I have spoken for rather longer than most hon. Members in this part of the debate. It has been reasonable to do so as the House has not been bristling with Members wishing to contribute. I appeal to the Minister to take the matter seriously. We are dealing with an enormous amount of money. We have in embryo form machinery that could be brought into being quickly to distribute the money in a coherent manner. To date, the Under-Secretary of State has said "No, we will do this in closed government, behind closed doors, bureaucratically in the Department of Education."

    Amendment No. 88 simply provides that the Minister must, under clause 31, make a whole range of regulations once the Bill becomes law. Is he intending to make those regulations without the consultation that would be expected in every sphere of the education system? If he were to accept the amendment, he would have a body at his disposal that would enable him to make the regulations very rapidly indeed.

    The Minister may find flaws in the amendment, and he may feel that it is not properly drafted and that it would be better done another way. I would not argue tremendously about that. However, I beg him to say that before the Bill reaches another place he will come forward with coherent arrangements to ensure that this large amount of public money is distributed in such a way that it serves national needs rather than out-of-date historical patterns.

    This is not a party issue. It is an issue on which the House is properly saying "We want to supervise public expenditure, and we are not being allowed to do so because of the obstinacy of the Department of Education." I hope that the Minister, when he replies, will try to reassure the House on some of the questions raised by my hon. Friends and will reassure me on some of the complaints that I have made.

    Of all the policy statements that have come from the Government, this must be the most idiotic of the lot. I cannot understand it coming from the Under-Secretary of State. I have known him through the years—although I have not shared the same political views—as a man of tremendous common sense. The hon. Gentleman comes from a part of Lancashire where common sense is the people's greatest asset.

    For the Government to restrict spending on technical education seems almost suicidal folly. Is the Minister aware that for 35 years, despite unemployment rising with almost disturbing regularity, we have always been short of skilled employees? Any economic recovery in an industrial society must depend on that element being stimulated.

    I ask the Minister to pay attention to some practical matters which any Government—Labour or Conservative—would neglect at their peril. The Prime Minister has repeatedly, but wisely, said that this is an interim period and that eventually we shall recover our economic balance and develop the economy. The Minister's colleague, the hon. Member for Sutton and Cheam (Mr. Macfarlane), laughs. I am glad that he can find something to laugh at, because I am damned if I can.

    All right, so we agree. But people do not usually show agreement with such a smiling countenance.

    I have had personal experience of the period to which I have referred. This factor has had a remarkably disturbing impact on our economy. Only two years ago we had a great debate in the House about paying skilled men the rate for the job. Indeed, we had strikes during that period because it was not applied.

    If lads are prepared to serve apprenticeships by going to work during the day and going to school in the evening, that must bring its own reward. But where are they to get the finance? The Government are proposing to cut down on this financial help. In the process, they will cut the wherewithal that produces the talent that we shall require more in the future than we have in the past. The Government are proposing to cut the stream of money that will enable this talent to be brought out. I cannot understand their reasoning.

    The Minister is from the education profession. There must be a spirit of fraternity amongst its members. He could expect to believe that fraternity rather than those who are here.

    I speak from a background of practical experience. I ask the Minister to believe that I know what I am talking about in practical, not theoretical, terms. Is it not possible for the Minister to call a meeting of the heads of all the technical colleges in Wales, England and Scotland, and, for that matter, Northern Ireland—it would take only a couple of hours—and ask them, the specialists in this area, to give him the benefit of their experience and beliefs and their promises for the future and be guided by them? He could ignore the Opposition as being prejudiced but seek the views of those who are knowledgeable and know full well what they are talking about.

    If the Government continue to make these inroads into the finance of our technical colleges, the country will pay a very heavy price in future. I beg a teacher—for such the Minister is—to acquaint himself with the views of the teaching profession on this important matter.

    We have had an interesting debate. We all agree with the strong feelings expressed by the hon. Member for Burnley (Mr. Jones). His constituency is very near the valley of Rossendale in which I was born and in which I lived for so long. No hon. Member would disagree with the importance that he placed on technical education. We all wish for its recovery, irrespective of party. We were privileged to hear the hon. Member speaking with such conviction.

    This debate has been more relaxed and has crossed party boundaries. We are concerned with the distribution of money in the maintained sector of advanced further education. In shorthand, we refer to this as capping the pool. The situation is reminiscent of Schleswig-Holstein in the nineteenth century. Of those who understood that complicated situation, one was dead, one had gone and the other had forgotten. Few of those concerned with advanced further education in the maintained sector would disagree that formerly we had no means of limiting the amount of money spent. That is why we had to cap the pool. Colleges could spend and subsequently draw money from the pool.

    Once courses had been established, there was little control on the money spent. As a result there was greater financial than academic drift. We are all grateful for the work that the right hon. Member for Widnes (Mr. Oakes) put into the Oakes committee. Most hon. Members will have read the proceedings of that committee. The capping of the pool may be likened to student union finance. Charges could be fixed without undertaking any responsibility for payment. Colleges established courses and levied the cost of those courses on a nationwide pool. The local authority paid only a minimal sum towards the cost. That system obviously had to end. Therefore, we decided in June that the pool would have to be capped. I shall deal presently with the percentage differences as regards previous expenditure on further education. I shall also deal with the budget for this year and next year.

    Something had to be done about the distribution of money. I am aware of the remarks of the hon. Member for Lewisham, West (Mr. Price) concerning long-term control. However, during debate on the Labour Government's Education Bill of 1979, which fell when the Government fell on 28 March, we opposed the Oakes committee. It was no surprise that we did not put that committee into operation when we came into office. My hon. Friend the Member for Ripon (Dr. Hampson) and I said in Committee that the arrangements were too bureaucratic. The Opposition did not agree. We accepted the need to cap the pool. We said that we would look at the distribution of resources when we would consider whether a national body was needed.

    Will the hon. Gentleman explain how a body of professionals and academics can be more bureaucratic than a body of bureaucrats?

    The hon. Gentleman presumes that it will always be a body of bureaucrats. I have not yet mentioned future control. It is not a static situation, and new proposals are evolving.

    As the hon. Member for Bedwellty (Mr. Kinnock) said, £375 million has been put into the pool for this year and distributed. It was a blunt distribution, as we said from the beginning, to enable the machinery to continue functioning. When we met local authorities, we agreed that until we established a more selective method of distributing the pool it should be based this year half on historical costs—what has been spent by polytechnics and colleges of higher education over the past few years—and half on an intelligent estimate of what local authorities needed to fulfil the requirements for the year. It is a mixture of historical costs and the dip that local authorities want. That was the blunt arrangement for this year.

    In using that rough and ready formula, as the hon. Gentleman called it previously, has he anticipated that some institutions will lose 10 per cent.—an important chunk—of that which is necessary to keep them going? The hon. Gentleman's view was that in the third or fourth year he might consider setting up a national body, but only in an advisory capacity. Is he now prepared, first, to make means available to overcome the problems caused by the major shortfall in resources for particular advanced further education institutions, and, secondly, to change his view of the status that that national body should have in the immediate future?

    10.45 pm

    I shall deal with all those points. If I miss any, I shall be grateful if the hon. Gentleman will raise them again.

    We first have to consider how to distribute the resources next time, not in the long term. The Times Higher Educational Supplement reported on its front page last Friday that discussions are taking place in the Department. An advisory committee has been set up to consider how to distribute on-course resources. The worst thing possible, as the hon. Member for Bedwellty suggested, would be for colleges to spend money on courses that are cheaper to run but which are not necessarily fulfilling needs and to cut back on engineering and science. We need a national course resource estimate, which we do not have at present. It would be useful to know that engineering costs 3x, another course 2x and a classroom course x.

    It is an ad hoc committee, with six members from the Department and 14 from outside, including people from local government and higher education. The purpose is
    "To pursue work on unit costs in AFE and to study the possibility of using a range of cost unit indices in the context of regulating authorities' claims on a limited AFE pool."
    If we are to have a sensible distribution, we must decide on numbers. First, we must know the cost of these courses compared to others. We shall then know how to allocate resources.

    On 8 February a letter went out to local authorities, which has been reported in the press. It says that at present, since the pool is limited, it is vital that no new courses should be started unless they fulfil a vocational need or provide a specific employment opportunity. I expect that the hon. Member for Burnley will agree with that. If new courses can be started within the distribution of the pool as a result of what is being done in individual colleges, that is fair enough. However, if colleges want to do something specifically different which they find that they cannot do on their own, they must come within the category that I have described before they may ask "May we have more money for this?"

    We had a meeting with the local authorities. We said that it was not for regional staff inspectors alone to say how many should be on a course and the criteria that should apply. We said that the courses must also be approved by the local education authorities. That does not mean the tick of an advisory officer. These matters should be considered by the committees of the education authorities so that the authorities may be aware that the courses are being established.

    In many instances that has not happened. On occasions it did not happen during the rapid build-up, which we all welcomed, when the polytechnics were being developed. We are now static. If there is development in one area, another area will have to cut back. That means that it is essential that those who have been elected and who hold responsibility have some say.

    Is the Minister satisfied beyond doubt that sufficient funds are available to the technical schools to develop on behalf of their students?

    I do not wish to be pedantic. I presume that the hon. Gentleman is talking about technical colleges.

    We are talking about advanced education, which is poolable. The capping of the pool is AFE—advanced further education—as against FE. I have the advanced further education figures. In real terms we are spending slightly more on FE this year than last year. That may bring delight to the Rossendale male voice choir and any equivalent choir in Burnley. In real terms, slightly more will be spent on FE next year than this year. The technical colleges should have the money to do the job.

    During the past few years the colleges have asked for 9 per cent. more than they have spent. The pool was large and everybody went out with his bucket to get as much as possible. However, there were not enough buckets in which to collect all the water. There was 9 per cent. left before it ran away at the end of the year. There is much talk about cuts, but every year the spending was overestimated. If we include all spending on AFE, 9 per cent. less than the sum requested was spent. It is right to remember the degree of under spending in previous years.

    I am informed that in real terms we shall be spending as much on home students during 1980–81 as we spent last year. I am informed that there has been no cut. That does not mean that in the pattern of distribution no college is worse off. If some colleges are worse off, that must mean that some colleges are better off. That which is taken from one side of the balance finds its way to the other side.

    I am glad that my hon. Friend agrees with me. That is pleasing, even if he did not agree with some of my arguments earlier this evening.

    The hon. Gentleman seems to be saying that if I have lost weight he is fitter. The balance does not work as he has described. If certain colleges have lost, they will be in jeopardy in the forthcoming year.

    If the hon. Gentleman, with whom I battled for so long in Committee, lost weight, I should not be fitter. I should be sad for him if that affected his health in any way. I say that in all cordiality. I was talking about overall cuts. It may be that I was speaking loosely. However, no one can say that we have cut back on provision for home students.

    What provision is being made for foreign students? We do not know how many foreign students will be enrolled in September. Many statements have been made, some of which are far from the mark. This year 86,000 students are attending colleges of further education and universities. The universities and colleges receive money for only 67,000 of those students, either from the UGC or from the maintained sector. They do not receive any money for 19,000 students. Thus, if there were 19,000 fewer students next year, not a penny less would go to the universities and maintained colleges. That is why the quota system does not work. When the previous Labour Government were in power, they tried to bring control by the quota system. They put the money in, but every year colleges and universities were enrolling more students than they could afford.

    The latest figures show that universities—I do not have the figures for polytechnics—are 12 per cent. down on applications from foreign students. Last year, for every four foreign students who applied for a university place, only one was accepted. The figures do not indicate that there will be a total dearth of foreign students entering our universities this year.

    The estimates which many hon. Members have seen indicate that the figure for foreign student applications is more like 30 per cent. or 40 per cent. down in the universities. I agree that it is far too early to give figures for the other sectors.

    Will the Minister answer one point before the guillotine falls? If courses in which half the students are overseas students and the other half are home students are threatened, will the Government do anything to protect those courses if the overseas students disappear, or will they simply let them disappear from the curriculum?

    The hon. Gentleman has quoted the figures of UCCA. They are not my figures. There are 12 per cent. fewer applications from foreign students at this time this year than there were at the same time last year. I do not know what estimates people have in their secret closets, but those are the printed estimates of UCCA.

    We have said time and again that if there is a serious fall in students in some institutions, or in a particular course, we shall look into it. It is no good running around with a fire bucket when there is no fire. It is as well to take a little

    Division No. 181]

    AYES

    [11 pm

    Abse, LeoBidwell, SydneyCanavan, Dennis
    Adams, AllenBooth, Rt Hon AlbertCant, R. B.
    Allaun, FrankBoothroyd, Miss BettyCarmichael, Neil
    Alton, DavidBottomley, Rt Hon Arthur (M'brough)Carter-Jones, Lewis
    Anderson, DonaldBradley, TomCartwright, John
    Archer, Rt Hon PeterBray, Dr JeremyClark, Dr David (South Shields)
    Armstrong, Rt Hon ErnestBrown, Hugh D. (Provan)Cocks, Rt Hon Michael (Bristol S)
    Ashley, Rt Hon JackBrown, Robert C. (Newcastle W)Cohen, Stanley
    Ashton, JoeBrown, Ronald W. (Hackney S)Coleman, Donald
    Atkinson, Norman (H'gey, Tott'ham)Brown, Ron (Edinburgh, Leith)Concannon, Rt Hon J. D.
    Barnett, Guy (Greenwich)Buchan, NormanConlan, Bernard
    Barnett, Rt Hon Joel (Heywood)Callaghan, Rt Hon J. (Cardiff SE)Cook, Robin F.
    Beith, A. J.Callaghan, Jim (Mlddleton & P)Cowans, Harry
    Benn, Rt Hon Anthony WedgwoodCampbell, IanCraigen, J. M. (Glasgow, Maryhill)
    Bennett, Andrew (Stockport N)Campbell-Savours, DaleCrowther, J. S.

    rest so as to be fresh and to be able to run faster when the fire is seen—if there is a fire. If we escape from the fire—

    I am sorry, I cannot give way. The hon. Gentleman was not present for the exciting debate, and because of that he will be deprived for the rest of his life.

    The hon. Member for Lewisham, West asked about long-term plans. I said that we had no long-term plans; we were not committed to setting up a national body, and we were not against the proposal. The fact that we asked the Select Committee to examine the matter indicates that we are prepared to listen to the arguments. We shall consider its advice carefully.

    Overall, it is simply a question of planning and capping of the pool. It is also a matter of the money which is spent in the University Grants Committee. We shall have to consider the amount of money which is spent in the maintained sector as against the UGC. Last year an agriculture economics course was closed down at a university, and a polytechnic started it up.

    It is not just a question of long-term planning of polytechnics. We also want long-term planning of the whole of higher education in this country so that it can serve the needs of the individual and of this country. We do not feel that a body of 25 people is adequate or necessary in relation to what we are doing, and I ask my hon. Friends to resist the amendment.

    Question put, That the amendment be made:—

    The House divided: Ayes 244, Noes 308.

    Cryer, BobJanner, Hon GrevilleRadice, Giles
    Cunliffe, LawrenceJay, Rt Hon DouglasRees, Rt Hon Merlyn (Leeds South)
    Cunningham, George (Islington S)John, BrynmorRoberts, Allan (Bootle)
    Dalyell, TamJohnston, Russell (Iverness)Roberts, Ernest (Hackney North)
    Davidson, ArthurJones, Rt Hon Alec (Rhondda)Roberts, Gwilym (Cannock)
    Davies, Rt Hon Denzil (Llanelli)Jones, Barry (East Flint)Robertson, George
    Davies, Ifor (Gower)Jones, Dan (Burnley)Robinson, Geoffrey (Coventry NW)
    Davis, Clinton (Hackney Central)Kaufman, Rt Hon GeraldRodgers, Rt Hon William
    Davis, Terry (B'rm'ham, Stechford)Kerr, RussellRooker, J. W.
    Deakins, EricKilroy-Silk, RobertRoss, Ernest (Dundee West)
    Dempsey, JamesKinnock, NeilRowlands, Ted
    Dewar, DonaldLamble, DavidRyman, John
    Dixon, DonaldLamborn, HarrySandelson, Neville
    Dobson, FrankLamond, JamesSever, John
    Dormand, JackLeadbitter, TedSheerman, Barry
    Douglas-Mann, BruceLeighton, RonaldSheldon, Rt Hon Robert (A'ton-u-L)
    Dubs, AlfredLestor, Miss Joan (Eton & Slough)Shore, Rt Hon Peter (Siep and Pop)
    Duffy, A. E. P.Lewis, Arthur (Newham North West)Short, Mrs Renée
    Dunn, James A. (Liverpool, Kirkdale)Lewis, Ron (Carlisle)Sllkin, Rt Hon John (Deptford)
    Dunnett, JackLitherland, RobertSilkln, Rt Hon S. C. (Dulwich)
    Dunwoody, Mrs GwynethLofthouse, GeoffreySilverman, Julius
    Eadie, AlexLyon, Alexander (York)Smith, Cyril (Rochdale)
    Eastham, KenLyons, Edward (Bradford West)Smith, Rt Hon J. (North Lanarkshire)
    Ellis, Raymond (NE Derbyshire)McElhone, FrankSnape, Peter
    Ellis, Tom (Wrexham)McKay, Alien (Penistone)Soley, Clive
    English, MichaelMcKelvey, WilliamSpearing, Nigel
    Evans, Ioan (Aberdare)MacKenzie, Rt Hon GregorSpriggs, Leslie
    Evans, John (Newton)Maclennan, RobertSteel, Rt Hon David
    Ewing, HarryMcMahon, AndrewStoddart, David
    Fitch, AlanMcMillan, Tom (Glasgow, Central)Stott, Roger
    Fitt, GerardMcNamara, KevinStrang, Gavin
    Flannery, MartinMagee, BryanStraw, Jack
    Fletcher, Ted (Darlington)Marks, KennethSummerskill, Hon Dr Shirley
    Foot, Rt Hon MichaelMarshall, David (Gl'sgow, Shettles'n)Taylor, Mrs Ann (Bolton West)
    Forrester, JohnMarshall, Dr Edmund (Goole)Thomas, Dafydd (Merioneth)
    Foster, DerexMarshall, Jim (Leicester South)Thomas, Jeffrey (Abertillery)
    Foulkes, GeorgeMartin, Michael (Gl'gow, Springb'rn)Thomas, Mike (Newcastle East)
    Freud, ClementMason, Rt Hon RoyThomas, Dr Roger (Carmarthen)
    Garrelt, John (Norwich S)Maxton, JohnThorne, Stan (Preston South)
    Garrett, W. E. (Wallsend)Maynard, Miss JoanTilley, John
    George, BruceMellish, Rt Hon RobertTinn, James
    Gilbert, Rt Hon Dr JohnMikardo, IanTorney, Tom
    Ginsburg, DavidMillan, Rt Hon BruceUrwin, Rt Hon Tom
    Golding, JohnMiller, Dr M. S. (East Kilbride)Varley, Rt Hon Eric G.
    Gourlay, HarryMitchell, Austin (Grimsby)Wainwright, Edwin (Dearne Valley)
    Graham, TedMitchell, R. C. (Soton, Itchen)Wainwright, Richard (Colne Valley)
    Grant, George (Morpeth)Morris, Rt Hon Alfred (Wythenshawe)Walker, Rt Hon Harold (Doncaster)
    Grant, John (Islington C)Morris, Rt Hon Charles (Openshaw)Weetch, Ken
    Grimond, Rt Hon J.Morris, Rt Hon John (Aberavon)Wellbeloved, James
    Hamilton, James (Bothwell)Morton, GeorgeWelsh, Michael
    Hamilton, W. W. (Central Fife)Moyle, Rt Hon RolandWhite, Frank R. (Bury & Radcliffe)
    Harrison, Rt Hon WalterMulley, Rt Hon FrederickWhite, James (Glasgow, Pollok)
    Hart, Rt Hon Dame JudithNewens, StanleyWhitehead, Phillip
    Hattersley, Rt Hon RoyOakes, Rt Hon GordonWhitlock, William
    Haynes, FrankOgden, EricWigley, Dafydd
    Healey, Rt Hon DenisO'Halloran, MichaelWilley, Rt Hon Frederick
    Heffer, Eric S.O'Neill, MartinWilliams, Rt Hon Alan (Swansea W)
    Hogg, Norman (E Dunbartonshire)Owen, Rt Hon Dr DavidWilson, Rt Hon Sir Harold (Huyton)
    Holland, Stuart (L'beth, Vauxhall)Palmer, ArthurWilson, William (Coventry SE)
    Home Robertson, JohnPark, GeorgeWinnick, David
    Homewood, WilliamParker, JohnWoodall, Alec
    Hooley, FrankParry, RobertWrigglesworth, Ian
    Horam, JohnPavitt, LaurieWright, Sheila
    Howell, Rt Hon Denis (B'ham, Sm H)Penhaligon, DavidYoung, David (Bolton East)
    Howells, GeraintPowell, Raymond (Ogmore)
    Hughes, Mark (Durham)Prescott, JohnTELLERS FOR THE AYES:
    Hughes, Robert (Aberdeen North)Price, Christopher (Lewlsham West)Mr. Hugh McCartney and Mr. Joseph Dean.
    Hughes, Roy (Newport)Race, Reg

    NOES

    Adley, RobertBell, Sir RonaldBowden, Andrew
    Aitken, JonathanBendall, VivianBoyson, Dr Rhodes
    Alexander, RichardBenyon, Thomas (Abingdon)Braine, Sir Bernard
    Alison, MichaelBenyon, W. (Buckingham)Bright, Graham
    Amery, Rt Hon JulianBerry, Hon AnthonyBrinton, Tim
    Ancram, MichaelBest, KeithBrittan, Leon
    Arnold, TomBevan, David GilroyBrocklebank-Fowler, Christopher
    Aspinwall, JackBiffen, Rt Hon JohnBrooke, Hon Peter
    Atkins, Rt Hon H. (Spelthorne)Biggs-Davison, JohnBrotherton, Michael
    Atkins, Robert (Preston North)Blackburn, JohnBrown, Michael (Brigg & Sc'thorpe)
    Atkinson, David (B'mouth, East)Body, RichardBrowne, John (Winchester)
    Baker, Kenneth (St. Marylebone)Bonsor, Sir NicholasBruce-Gardyne, John
    Baker, Nicholas (North Dorset)Boscawen, Hon RobertBryan, Sir Paul
    Beaumont-Dark, AnthonyBottomley, Peter (Woolwich West)Buchanan-Smith, Hon Alick

    Buck, AntonyHogg, Hon Douglas (Grantham)Page, Richard (SW Hertfordshire)
    Budgen, NickHolland, Philip (Carlton)Parkinson, Cecil
    Bulmer, EsmondHooson, TomParris, Matthew
    Butcher, JohnHordern, PeterPatten, Christopher (Bath)
    Butler, Hon AdamHowe, Rt Hon Sir GeoffreyPatten, John (Oxford)
    Cadbury, JocelynHowell, Rt Hon David (Guildford)Pattle, Geoffrey
    Carlisle, John (Luton West)Howell, Ralph (North Norfolk)Pawsey, James
    Carlisle, Kenneth (Lincoln)Hunt, David (Wirral)Percival, Sir Ian
    Carlisle, Rt Hon Mark (Runcorn)Hunt, John (Ravensbourne)Peyton, Rt Hon John
    Channon, PaulHurd, Hon DouglasPink, R. Bonner
    Chapman, SydneyIrvine, Charles (Cheltenham)Pollock, Alexander
    Clark, Hon Alan (Plymouth, Sutton)Jenkin, Rt Hon PatrickPorter, George
    Clark, Sir William (Croydon South)Johnson Smith, GeoffreyPowell, Rt Hon J. Enoch (S Down)
    Clarke, Kenneth (Rushcliffe)Jopling, Rt Hon MichaelPrice, David (Eastleigh)
    Cockeram, EricJoseph, Rt Hon Sir KeithPrior, Rt Hon James
    Colvin, MichaelKaberry, Sir DonaldProctor, K. Harvey
    Cormack, PatrickKimball, MarcusPym, Rt Hon Francis
    Corrie, JohnKing, Rt Hon TomRaison, Timothy
    Costal n, A. P.Kitson, Sir TimothyRathbone, Tim
    Cranborne, ViscountKnight, Mrs JillRees, Peter (Dover and Deal)
    Critchley, JulianKnox, DavidRees-Davies, W. R.
    Crouch, DavidLamont, NormanRenton, Tim
    Dean, Paul (North Somerset)Lang, IanRhodes James, Robert
    Dickens, GeoffreyLangford-Holt, Sir JohnRhys Williams, Sir Brandon
    Dorrell, StephenLatham, MichaelRidley, Hon Nicholas
    Douglas-Hamilton, Lord JamesLawrence, IvanRidsdale, Julian
    Dover, DenshoreLee, JohnRifkind, Malcolm
    du Cann, Rt Hon EdwardLe Marchant, SpencerRoberts, Wyn (Conway)
    Dunn, Robert (Dartford)Lennox-Boyd, Hon MarkRoss, Wm. (Londonderry)
    Durant, TonyLester, Jim (Beeston)Rossi, Hugh
    Dykes, HughLewis, Kenneth (Rutland)Rost, Peter
    Eden, Rt Hon Sir JohnLloyd, Ian (Havant & Waterloo) Royle, Sir Anthony
    Edwards, Rt Hon N. (Pembroke)Lloyd, Peter (Fareham)Sainsbury, Hon Timothy
    Eggar, TimothyLoveridge, JohnSt. John-Stevas, Rt Hon Norman
    Elliott, Sir WilliamLuce, RichardScott, Nicholas
    Emery, PeterLyell, NicholasShaw, Giles (Pudsey)
    Fairbairn, NicholasMcCrindle, RobertShelton, William (Streatham)
    Fairgrieve, RussellMcCusker, H. Shepherd, Richard (Aldridge-Br'hills)
    Faith, Mrs SheilaMacfarlane, NeilShersby, Michael
    Farr, JohnMacGregor, JohnSilvester, Fred
    Fenner, Mrs PeggyMacKay, John (Argyll)Sims, Roger
    Finsberg, GeoffreyMcNair-Wilson, Michael (Newbury)Skeet, T. H. H.
    Fisher Sir NigelMcNair-Wilson, Patrick (New Forest)Smith, Dudley (War. and Leam'ton)
    Fletcher, Alexander (Edinburgh N)McQuarrie, AlbertSpeed, Keith Spence, John
    Fletcher-Cooke, CharlesMadel, DavidSpeller, Tony
    Fookes, Miss JanetMajor, JohnSpence John
    Forman, NigelMarland, PaulSpicer, Jim (West Dorset)
    Fowler, Rt Hon Norman
    Fox, MarcusMarlow, TonySpicer, Michael (S Worcestershire)
    Fraser, Rt Hon H. (Stafford & St)Marshall, Michael (Arundel)Sproat, Iain
    Fraser, Peter (South Angus)Marten, Neil (Banbury) Squire, Robin
    Fry, PeterMates, MichaelStainton, Keith
    Gardiner George (Reigate)Mather, CarolStanbrook, Ivor
    Gardner, Edward (South Fylde)Maude, Rt Hon AngusStanley, John
    Garel-Jones, TristanMawby, RaySteen, Anthony
    Gilmour, Rt Hon Sir IanMawhinney, Dr BrianStevens, Martin
    Glyn, Dr AlanMaxwell-Hyslop, RobinStewart, Ian (Hitchin)
    Goodhart, PhilipMayhew, PatrickStewart, John (East Renfrewshire)
    Goodlad, AlastalrMellor, DavidStokes, John
    Gorst, JohnMeyer, Sir AnthonyStradling Thomas, J.
    Gow, IanMiller, Hal (Bromsgrove & Redditch)Tapsell, Peter
    Gower, Sir RaymondMills, Iain (Meriden)Taylor, Robert (Croydon NW)
    Grant, Anthony (Harrow C)Mills, Peter (West Devon)Tebbit, Norman
    Gray, HamishMiscampbell, NormanTemple-Morris, peter
    Greenway, HarryMitchell, David (Basingstoke)Thatcher, Rt Hon Mrs Margaret
    Griffiths, Eldon (Bury St Edmunds)Moate, RogerThompson, Donald
    Griffiths, Peter (Portsmouth N)Molyneaux, JamesThorne, Neil (Ilford South)
    Grist, IanMonro, HectorThornton, Malcolm
    Grylls, MicnaelMontgomery, FergusTownend, John (Bridlington)
    Gummer John SelwynMoore, JohnTownsend, Cyril D. (Bexleyheath)
    Hamilton, Hon Archie (Eps'm&Ew R)Morgan, GeraintTrippier, David
    Hamilton, Michael (Salisbury)Morris, Michael (Northampton, Sth)Trotter, Neville
    Hampson, Dr KeithMorrison, Hon Charles (Devizes)van Straubenzee, W. R.
    Hannam, JohnMorrison, Hon Peter (City of Chester)Vaughan, Dr Gerard
    Haselhurst, AlanMudd, DavidViggers, Peter
    Hastings, StephenMurphy, ChristopherWakeham, John
    Havers, Rt Hon Sir MichaelMyles, DavidWaldegrave, Hon William
    Hawksley, WarrenNeale, GerrardWalker, Rt Hon Peier (Worcester)
    Hayhoe, BarneyNeedham, RichardWalker, Bill (Perth & E Perthshire)
    Heath, Rt Hon EdwardNelson, AnthonyWaller, Gary
    Heddle, JohnNeubert, MichaelWalters, Dennis
    Henderson, BarryNormanton, TomWard, John
    Haseltine, Rt Hon MichaelOnslow, CranleyWarren, Kenneth
    Hicks, RobertOsborn, JohnWatson, John
    Higgins, Rt Hon Terence L.Page, John (Harrow, West)Wells, John (Maidstone)
    Hill, JamesPage, Rt Hon Sir R. GrahamWells, Bowen (Hert'rd & Stev'nage)

    Wheeler, JohnWilkinson, John
    Whitelaw, Rt Hon WilliamWinterton, NicholasTELLERS FOR THE NOES:
    Whitney, RaymondWolfson, MarkMr. John Cope and Mr. David Waddington.
    Wickenden, KeithYoung, Sir George (Acton)
    Wiggln, JerryYounger, Rt Hon George

    Question accordingly negatived.

    I am now required to put the Question on any remaining amendments moved by the Government. I propose to read the numbers of the amendments and if hon. Members require a Division on a particular amendment they should so indicate.