Orders of the Day — Surrey County Council Bill.

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons on 17th February 1931.

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Photo of Sir Frederick Penny Sir Frederick Penny , Kingston upon Thames

I support the Bill because I think it a very reasonable Bill. The views expressed by my hon. and gallant Friend the Member for Oxford (Captain Bourne) I welcome as criticisms which will make us look carefully into the Bill and see that nothing which should not be there is included in it. From my hon. and gallant Friend's remarks I gather that he is rather anxious whether giving these powers to the county council may cut across the powers of the Government, should the Government at any time bring in a Bill of this description. We know that in the King's Speech the Government adumbrated a Bill for regional town planning, but so far it has not been introduced. I think the Surrey County Council are to be commended for having taken time by the forelock with the object of preserving the amenities of a beautiful county. In many parts of the country one sees unsightly and hideous buildings and hoardings spoiling the view. That is what the Surrey County Council wish to prevent. I am sure that their object is to do good, and I hope that their example will lead other local authorities to take an interest in preserving the amenities of the countryside. For these reasons I feel sure that the hon. and gallant Member for Oxford will withdraw his opposition, and not press it to a Division. The hon. and gallant Member for Maldon (Lieut.-Colonel Ruggles-Brise) seemed to suggest that the county council were trying to make themselves important. If I thought for a moment that that was his suggestion I should at once tell him that they are important already. I know the composition of the county council; I know that they are a very progressive authority, and I submit that there are many counties in this country which could take pattern from them. I support the Bill, and I hope that my hon. and gallant Friends will withdraw the Motion for its rejection.