Friday Sittings.

Precedence for Government Business. – in the House of Commons on 24th November 1922.

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Motion made, and Question proposed; That, during the present Session, the House do meet on Fridays at Eleven o'clock, and that Pour o'clock and half-past Four o'clock be substituted for Five o'clock and half-past Five, respectively, as the hours for the interruption of Business and Adjournment of the House on that day."—[The Prime Minister.]

Photo of Commander Hon. Joseph Kenworthy Commander Hon. Joseph Kenworthy , Kingston upon Hull Central

I should like to make an observation on this Motion, to the effect that, in the first place, I regret that the Motion was not put down earlier. I suppose it could not have been put down yesterday; but I think some arrangement might have been made, so that the House could have met to-day at Eleven o'clock, instead of Twelve o'clock. Secondly, without going into details, I should like to know whether the time has not come when the hours of the Sittings of this House should not be reconsidered. I believe the usual reason put forward for the present arrangement of meeting at 2.45 p.m. and sitting until Eleven or Twelve o'clock at night is that it suits the legal profession. I think we have fewer lawyers in this House than in any previous House, and, therefore, it is to be hoped that we shall get on better with our business. In any case, the present hours of the Sittings of the House are unhealthy They are bad for good legislation. I do not mean- that nothing good can be done after Eleven o'clock at night. But at Eleven o'clock people are tired. I know that I am myself.

Photo of Mr John Whitley Mr John Whitley , Halifax

The question of the hours of sitting of the House on days other than Friday does not arise on this Motion.

Photo of Commander Hon. Joseph Kenworthy Commander Hon. Joseph Kenworthy , Kingston upon Hull Central

Would it be in order to move to leave out the words "on Fridays," which would make it every day at eleven o'clock, and would be a much better arrangement?

Photo of Mr John Whitley Mr John Whitley , Halifax

That would be going far beyond the scope of the Resolution.