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Business of the House

Volume 831: debated on Tuesday 11 July 2023

Timing of Debates

My Lords, I thought it would be helpful to the House if I briefly set out the plan for further consideration of the Illegal Migration Bill in this House next week. As announced in a revised Forthcoming Business published yesterday, the plan is for noble Lords to consider any message from the House of Commons tomorrow, if the Bill is returned from that House as expected. The deadline for amendments will be 1 pm tomorrow, which will allow time for the House authorities and noble Lords to prepare. We therefore expect to commence consideration of the message later in the afternoon, after making some progress on Report on the Online Safety Bill.

Further announcements about the precise timings and arrangements will be placed on the annunciator tomorrow. I will also make additional announcements in the Chamber throughout this week and early next week about the arrangements for further proceedings on this Bill and others before summer as necessary.

When these arrangements are made, what consideration is given to the problems of those of us who do not live in and around London in getting to and from this place?

My Lords, noble Lords come from here, there and everywhere. We do try to be considerate. I am thinking particularly of our Labour Front Bench; the noble Baroness has to travel for some hours to get here, so we absolutely take that into consideration.

My Lords, further to that point, can I ask the Government Chief Whip whether the House will sit late tomorrow night, bearing in mind what that will mean for the staff of the House? What time does she anticipate that voting will begin on any amendments to the Illegal Migration Bill? Will we sit throughout the night, or is this something that could be returned to in a daytime sitting, perhaps one morning?

My Lords, business entirely depends on whether noble Lords press things to a Division. It is difficult for me to stand here and say precisely what time, but yes, we can expect some late sittings in the next week.