First Schedule. — (Trades and Businesses exempted front the provisions of section one.)

Orders of the Day — Shops (Sunday Trading Restriction) Bill. – in the House of Commons on 1st May 1936.

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2.56 p.m.

Photo of Mr John Banfield Mr John Banfield , Wednesbury

I beg to move, in page 13, line 7, to leave out "or off".

I am moving this Amendment to enable me to move a further Amendment in page 13, line 10, at the end, to insert: The sale of meals or refreshments for consumption off the premises at any such premises as aforesaid (other than at a fried fish shop) if the sale of meals or refreshments for consumption on those premises forms a substantial part of the business carried on therein. It has appeared to me and my friends that it is necessary to have a better definition of what constitutes premises for the purposes of refreshments than is laid down in the Schedule. Unless there is some definition along the lines I am suggesting, it may be possible for somebody to put four chairs and a marble top table inside the door of a baker's shop or some other kind of shop and declare it is a place for refreshments.

Photo of Mr Pierse Loftus Mr Pierse Loftus , Lowestoft

The promoters are much obliged to the hon. Member. They think that his series of Amendments really improves the wording and the objects of the Bill.

Amendment agreed to.

Photo of Mr Roland Robinson Mr Roland Robinson , Blackpool

I beg to move, in page 13, line 10, after "fish" to insert "and chip."

I feel that this Amendment should have been moved by my hon. Friend the Member for Southend-on-Sea (Mr. Channon), but he thought it better that I should move it. The purpose is to improve the definition and to make clear that" fried fish shop "refers to" fish and chip shop."

Photo of Mr Edward Fleming Mr Edward Fleming , Manchester, Withington

I beg to second the Amendment.

Amendment agreed to.

Photo of Mr Roland Robinson Mr Roland Robinson , Blackpool

I beg to move, in page 13, line 10, at the end, to insert: except in the case of seaside and holiday resorts during the months of June to October inclusive. In moving this Amendment, I am, asking the House to agree to an exception to an exception in the Bill, and I am doing it at the request of the National Federation of Fish Friers. When the words were originally inserted the Committee believed that they were fulfilling the wish of that Federation, but that was not so. The general policy of the Federation is Sunday closing, but they feel that some exception should be made in favour of their members who run fish and chip shops in holiday resorts. There it is an entirely seasonal trade, and those who carry it on need to be able to open on every possible day in order to make their businesses pay. Another reason why I move the Amendment is that in holiday resorts a large number of the patrons are working-men. As the Bill stands, if you can spend 3s. or 4s. you can get a meal at a restaurant, and we feel it is important that the workingman who can spend only 6d. on his meal should be able to eat it in a fish and chip shop where he is accustomed to do so.

3.3 p.m.

Photo of Mr Pierse Loftus Mr Pierse Loftus , Lowestoft

This Amendment raises two points, one of principle and the other of wording. Last Friday this question was discussed under a wide Clause which was defeated by the House. For some reason, the mention of fish-shops raises laughter, and when I put in a plea last Friday for the poor people, such as cotton operatives, who go in their hundreds of thousands to Blackpool and are used to getting a cheap and healthy meal of fish and chips, I was jeered at from certain quarters. It would be a real injustice to these people if Parliament stopped them from getting fish and chips on Sunday. The wording of the Amendment, however, is too wide and provides no machinery. The Second Schedule gives power to local authorities only to allow opening to 2 o'clock, but the people at the seaside resorts want meals after that hour. The best procedure would be not to press the Amendment in its present form, but to withdraw it and to hope that the Home Office may be able to frame another Amendment to put forward in another place. Until I had the misfortune to take charge of this very complicated Bill, I never realised the extraordinary utility and necessity of having another House.

Lieut.-Colonel SANDEMAN ALLEN:

If this Amendment is accepted, I hope that the definition to be put in the interpretation Clause will define without any doubt what is a seaside and holiday resort, because it may lead to malpractices if it is not clearly laid down.

3.5 p.m.

Photo of Mr Harold Balfour Mr Harold Balfour , Isle of Thanet

Having the honour to represent a seaside resort, I cannot feel quite content with the proposal of the hon. Member who is piloting this Bill. He says that because the Amendment raises a matter of principle which the House would not accept last week, it should now be withdrawn and we should leave it to another place.

Photo of Mr Pierse Loftus Mr Pierse Loftus , Lowestoft

I am sorry if my hon. and gallant Friend misunderstood me. I said that the Amendment raises two questions: that on the question of whether people who go to places such as Blackpool should be allowed to have meals on Sundays, I was sure the whole House was in sympathy with the proposal, but on the second point, regarding the machinery of the proposal, I said that the wording was impossible.

Photo of Mr Harold Balfour Mr Harold Balfour , Isle of Thanet

As to whether people going to Blackpool should have meals or not I would hesitate to express an opinion. I should say, personally, that no one ought to go to Blackpool at all when there are such very satisfactory and pleasant seaside resorts in the south of England as Margate and Ramsgate. If the promoter of the Bill, instead of leaving this to the Home Office in a sort of vain hope that something may be done, will give me an assurance that he will take steps to see that in another place an Amendment is inserted which will really give effect to the wishes of this House, then I am willing to see this Amendment withdrawn; but with that vague promise that he will, as we may say "hand the baby on to the Home Office", I cannot be content.

2.7 p.m.

Photo of Sir Percy Harris Sir Percy Harris , Bethnal Green South West

I hope the House will not be so ready to show this almost childish and simple faith in another place. I have great respect for another place, but I cannot feel so certain about the knowledge it possesses regarding fried fish shops. The hon. Member for Lowestoft (Mr. Loftus) has shown great skill in manipulating the House of Commons, but there is no reason to believe that there will be anybody equally skilful in manipulating another place. I think that if we want another place to function we ought at least to put in some words which will force their hands.

3.8 p.m.

Photo of Mr Geoffrey Lloyd Mr Geoffrey Lloyd , Birmingham, Ladywood

I think those hon. Members who were in the House last Friday will have very little doubt about our attitude on the question of whether fish and chips may be supplied on Sunday or not. I spent some time in trying, unsuccessfully, to champion the right of the working man to have fried fish and chips at the seaside on a Sunday afternoon in the summer. Now we find that that meets the wish of the National Association of Fish Fryers, who do not wish to be open on Sundays in other parts of the country, but it is now understood, do desire that their members should be allowed to open their shops at the seaside resorts, Therefore, I am naturally in favour of the Amendment: but again the question of the wording arises, and again we are faced with the same difficulty which we have had to face before, and that is the difficulty of finding satisfactory words in the short time we have had to consider the matter. I can- not say now whether these words are fully satisfactory or not. We are rather inclined to doubt it. On the other hand, I think that the hon. Member for South- West Bethnal Green (Sir P. Harris) and the hon. and gallant Member for the Isle of Thanet (Captain Balfour) put an interesting point. I think we ought to give some lead to another place in a matter on which we, as the Commons of England, may be said to have special knowledge. I myself, therefore, would be inclined to accept this Amendment, but we must rely upon another place to deal with the difficulties of the situation.

3.9 p.m.

Photo of Mr Ernest Thurtle Mr Ernest Thurtle , Shoreditch

As a Member who is jealous for the reputation of this House, I desire to enter a protest against the invidious references which are being made to another place. It seems to me that it is derogatory to the dignity of the House of Commons, in fact very humiliating to the House, that we should be frequently put into the position, by the promoter of this Bill, of having to dele- gate our responsibility to another place. This is the assembly where matters of this kind ought to be settled. If the Bill is so badly drafted that it is not possible for the House of Commons to give a decision on important points, and that they have to be referred to another place, I submit that that is not a reflection upon the House of Commons but a reflection on those responsible for introducing the Bill. As a House of Commons' man I object to the way in which we have made ourselves subservient to another place in the course of these Debates.

3.10 p.m.

Photo of Mr Arthur Reed Mr Arthur Reed , Exeter

One important point appears to have been overlooked. I see that the exemption for seaside places is between the months of June and October. We have heard the views of hon. Members representing only the places which have a hostile climate and are fit to be visited only in those months. I can speak for a charming part of the country where we have a winter sea-son. Visitors to the resorts in Devonshire, for example, are not confined to the summer months. Can they not be allowed to have their nutritious meal of fish and chips if they are spending their holidays in Devonshire during the winter? Fish and chips are eaten in Devonshire just as they are in the towns on the East coast.

3.11 p.m.

Photo of Mr Stephen Furness Mr Stephen Furness , Sunderland

The fish friers in my constituency feel very strongly about the proposal that their shops should not be open on Sundays. The Amendment proposes that fried fish shops should be open in seaside and holiday resorts, but it is a dangerous Amendment unless we are given a strict definition of seaside or holiday resort. The constituency which I represent is primarily concerned with shipbuilding, but it also has a certain part which can well be called a seaside resort. That peculiarity applies to many places on the North-East Coast. Fried fish shop proprietors are put in an impossible position if one part of a town is called a seaside resort and another part is called industrial. The Amendment should not be carried unless its proper purpose is made clear and it is strictly limited to places such as Blackpool, and to seaside resorts in the ordinary sense of the term.

3.13 p.m.

Photo of Mr Rhys Davies Mr Rhys Davies , Westhoughton

The position in the first instance of the fish friers was that they did not want to open on Sunday at all, but when the Bill passed through the Committee stage we were informed by a section of their organisation that they wanted to open at certain seaside resorts. With regard to the suggestion that we are asking another place to correct the mistakes of the House of Commons, I have seen so much of this Bill that I have come to the conclusion that few hon. Members dreamt, when we embarked upon it, of the colossal nature of the problem of distribution. We have spent weeks in discussion on agriculture, weeks on coal mining and days on shipbuilding, but the industry of distribution is bigger than coal-mining, agriculture, shipbuilding and textiles combined. At the end of our discussion of this Bill we find ourselves faced with the biggest industry in the land. For that reason I hope that the hon. Gentleman, in consultation with the hon. Member for Blackpool (Mr. J. R. Robinson), will find a way out of our difficulties in another place. I was glad to hear the hon. Member for Exeter (Mr. Reed) pleading for fish and chips for Devonshire. I can understand fish and chips in Brighton and Blackpool, but I could never understand fish and chips in Torquay. The habits of the people are different.

Photo of Mr Cooper Rawson Mr Cooper Rawson , Brighton

May I ask the hon. Member to explain what he meant by his allusion to Brighton?

Photo of Mr Rhys Davies Mr Rhys Davies , Westhoughton

If I have offended the town of Brighton, or especially the adjoining town of Hove, I withdraw at once. From what has been said by the the hon. Member for Brighton (Sir C. Rawson), I suspect that they do not eat any fish and chips there at all.

Photo of Mr Pierse Loftus Mr Pierse Loftus , Lowestoft

The Under-Secretary has suggested that, while the Amendment is probably too widely and loosely drawn, and therefore will have to be amended, it should be accepted, and that, the House of Commons having laid down the principle, the technical and legal method of applying that principle might fitly be left to another place. I ask the House not to accept that suggestion.

3.16 p.m.

Photo of Lieut-Colonel Sir Arnold Wilson Lieut-Colonel Sir Arnold Wilson , Hitchin

I should like to remind the promoters that three-quarters of the white fish consumed in this country is consumed in fried-fish shops. The Amendment is of far wider application than appears at first sight, and I think the House would be better advised, if it accepts the Amendment, to consider widening it rather than restricting it. I am credibly informed on pretty good authority that the Fish Friers' Association is not by any means in all respects representative of the whole body of fried-fish merchants in this country, and that their ex parte statements are not entitled to be regarded as fully representative.

Amendment agreed to.

3.17 p.m.

Photo of Mr John Banfield Mr John Banfield , Wednesbury

I beg to move, in page 13, line 10, at the end, to insert: The sale of meals or refreshments for consumption off the premises at any such premises as aforesaid (other than at a fried fish shop) if the sale of meals or refreshments for consumption on those premises forms a substantial part of the business carried on therein. In moving this Amendment I propose to follow the course that I outlined in moving the first Amendment. The reason for the Amendment is that it would be most undesirable if, in our reasonable desire to give people facilities to buy meals or refreshments at certain places on Sundays for consumption off the premises, we opened a very wide door to people who did not mean to use their premises for that purpose. I think the promoters of the Bill will see that my only desire is to make the Measure a little fairer and more helpful.

3.19 p.m.

Photo of Mr Isidore Salmon Mr Isidore Salmon , Harrow

I think it is important that the House should realise the effect of this Amendment. I myself have ventured to put down an Amendment which I think would really deal with the situation. The hon. Member for Wednesbury (Mr. Banfield) started by saying that he feels that it is desirable that there should be a limitation in regard to the supply of meals for consumption off the premises. It will be noticed that the exempted trades and businesses set out in the First Schedule include the sale of flour confectionery, and the hon Member, in the course of his series of Amendments, is suggesting that the sale of flour confectionery should be excluded from the list of exempted businesses. The effect of that—

Photo of Mr John Banfield Mr John Banfield , Wednesbury

On a point of Order. If the hon. Gentleman is going over the whole range, including the subject of flour confectionery, I take it I shall be able to do the same thing.

Photo of Lieut-General Edward Fitzroy Lieut-General Edward Fitzroy , Daventry

The Second Amendment is consequential on the first. The hon. Member for Hat row (Sir I. Salmon) wishes to insert some other words. I do not know whether it would alter the character of the Amendment.

Photo of Mr John Banfield Mr John Banfield , Wednesbury

I think it would. I have a further Amendment which deals specifically with the point that the hon. Gentleman is now raising, and he can raise it on that Amendment.

Amendment agreed to.

3.21 p.m.

Photo of Mr John Banfield Mr John Banfield , Wednesbury

I beg to move, in page 13, line 11, to leave out "The sale of flour confectionery."

When this matter was before the Committee these words were in the Second Schedule. The hon. Member for Harrow (Sir I. Salmon) moved an Amendment, which was accepted, which put them into the First Schedule, the effect of which is that flour confectionery is exempt altogether from the provisions of the Bill. I want the House to realise the position in which the hon. Gentleman landed the baking trade. Under the Bill the sale of bread and fancy rolls is forbidden at 10 o'clock on Sunday morning. A baker's shop in the main is a shop where you can buy bread, but you can also buy cakes, fancy confectionery and so on; in other words, it is a baker's and confectioner's shop. The effect of the Amendment that was accepted in the Committee is that a baker can open his shop on Sunday up to 10 o'clock and can sell bread. After 10 he could not, but his shop could be open all day for the sale of cakes.

At a large meeting last night I was authorised to say to the House that it is the wish of the employers in the baking trade that bakers' shops should not open on Sundays for the sale of confectionery and they beg the House to realise that it is impossible to separate bread and confectionery. One of the main purposes of the Bill is bound to be defeated. It is a temptation to break the law if a shop is open for the sale of a 6d. cake and you cannot supply a, penny roll. They desire to have the shops closed altogether. The hon. Member for Harrow is very anxious that people who go out on Sunday should be able to call at a shop and say, "We want two penny sponge cakes because we are on the verge on starvation." I am not satisfied that sponge cakes are refreshment at all. I have made a, good many of them in my time.

Photo of Mr Isidore Salmon Mr Isidore Salmon , Harrow

Is that the reason why the hon. Member has gone into politics 1

Photo of Mr John Banfield Mr John Banfield , Wednesbury

I suggest to the House that the words "flour confectionery" in this part of the Schedule need not be put into the Schedule at all. Every one wishes to enable people to have a chance on Sunday to buy suitable refreshments. We believe that the Bill already makes ample provision for that purpose and can see no reason at all why the words "flour confectionery" should be inserted. If a person went into a restaurant or cafe and said, "I want to buy a penny bun and two sponge cakes," it might be argued "We do not know whether we can sell them because of the words flour confectionery' in the Act." Provided the request is bona fide and the people want the food for the sake of refreshment, there is no reason at all why it should not be supplied. We do not want restaurants and cafes on Sundays to be turned into bakers' and confectioners' shops under a different name altogether. The Bill gives ample protection for all who want refreshment on Sunday. I have gone into this matter because I am anticipating the speech of the hon. Gentleman the Member for Harrow, but I would remind the hon. Gentleman that thousands of bakers up and down the country have asked for this provision to be put into the Second Schedule, and for the chance to close their shops. Even the hon. Member for Harrow, as the head of a big business, can well afford to say that, if the baking businesses of this country ask that flour confectionery shall be taken out of the First Schedule and that their shops shall be shut, he will agree to support the Amendment.

3.28 p.m.

Photo of Mr Isidore Salmon Mr Isidore Salmon , Harrow

It is a little difficult to follow the arguments of the hon. Gentleman the Member for Wednesbury (Mr. Banfield). In so far as he admits that the baking trade as a whole are not desirous of having their shops open on Sunday, the Amendment which I have suggested covers the position. All that I am anxious to do is to provide that the House shall make the intention of the Bill absolutely clear, as we do not want to have a Bill which will be impracticable in its operation and administration. In the Committee upstairs the Home Secretary admitted that, for administrative purposes, it was desirable to put in the words "flour confectionery". When the promoters of the Bill introduced it, they said that they did not desire to interfere with the amenities of the people. Is it not a very absurd thing that, if persons desire to purchase on a Sunday such things as sponge cakes, buns or biscuits, they will be precluded from doing so unless they consume them on the premises?

That is the doubt, and it is because such a doubt exists that I am desirous of moving a later Amendment, first of all, to meet the position of the bakery trade. At the same time, I hope we are not going to re-introduce D.O.R.A., so that on every day of the week it would be possible to buy a sponge cake, a bun or biscuits, but on a Sunday one would be precluded from doing so. It does not mean that you are going to have any special places open. It is provided that refreshments and meals may be served. The hon. Member says that refreshments and meals include these things for sale off the premises. I am advised that that is not clear, and all that I am asking the House to do is to say definitely and explicitly what it means. My Amendment would not be widening the door or doing anything to cut across the objects of the Bill, with which a large majority of the House agree and with which I have great sympathy. People who supply refreshments are the servants of the public. We have heard a great deal about what shopkeepers want. There is a big public to be considered, but for some extraordinary reason the view seems to be held that the public are not to be considered.

I remember that two or three years ago the hon. Member for Westhoughton (Mr. Rhys Davies) seconded a Bill, which passed through the House, to permit local authorities to advertise this country abroad, in order to show visitors the amenities and beauties of this country. Does the House think that it is sensible when visitors come from abroad that we should tell them that on Sunday they may buy an ice cream, with a wafer—the hon. Member opposite, who objects to my Amendment, provides that you may buy an ice cream with a wafer—but that they cannot buy an ice cream with a sponge cake? Is that not absurd, on the face of it? It is because of these absurdities that the House ought to understand what they are doing. If they support my Amendment they will be doing nothing more or less than giving a definite expression to the intention of the promoters that the introduction of the Bill shall not interfere with the amenities of the people.

If what I propose is not done, the Bill will interfere with the amenities of the people in the way I have described and will make the purchase of buns, biscuits or sponge cakes, illegal for anyone who wants to consume them off the premises. That is a preposterous proposition. We have had enough of D.O.R.A., and we do not want a super D.O.R.A. I do not wish to detain the House, because I should like to see the Bill through.

3.34 p.m.

Photo of Mr Ian Orr-Ewing Mr Ian Orr-Ewing , Weston-Super-Mare

I should like some definition of what will be the position of the wild animals in the Zoological Gardens at Whipsnade, unless we are able to buy our buns and biscuits to throw to those animals I do not wish to speak about the hardship to those animals, but we must have some definition as to the position of a. visitor to the Zoo at Whipsnade unless some assistance is given to him in the buying of biscuits and buns on Sundays.

Photo of Mr Pierse Loftus Mr Pierse Loftus , Lowestoft

If the position were as described by the hon. Member for Harrow (Sir I. Salmon) it would be a preposterous position. If people were forbidden to obtain buns, cakes or biscuits, it would be intolerable. The Amendment is clear, and avoids any danger of that kind. It says: The sale of meals or refreshments for consumption off the premises. Surely buns, biscuits and cakes are refreshments, and as such they are allowed to be sold in any place where the sale of meals and refreshments is a substantial portion of the business. That answers the point put by the hon. Member for Westonsuper-Mare (Mr. Orr-Ewing). I hope the House will accept the Amendment. I can assure the hon. Member for Harrow that it is so framed that refreshments can be consumed off the premises, but it stops a baker who has never yet opened for the sale of refreshments suddenly putting a small cake in a small room and then selling bread off the premises the whole day.

Photo of Mr Ernest Thurtle Mr Ernest Thurtle , Shoreditch

This is rather a complicated issue and I hope we shall have some advice from the Under-Secretary of State. But I hope he will not suggest that we should leave this issue to another place.

Photo of Lieut-Colonel Sir Arnold Wilson Lieut-Colonel Sir Arnold Wilson , Hitchin

I am in as much doubt as other hon. Members on this matter, but I prefer to err with the hon. Member for Harrow (Sir I. Salmon) rather than to think rightly with the promoters of the Bill. If there is any doubt, I prefer to accept the authority of the hon. Member for Harrow in any matter which refers to the feeding of the people, and, equally, to leave the wild animals to the tender mercies of the promoters.

3.37 p.m.

Photo of Mr Geoffrey Lloyd Mr Geoffrey Lloyd , Birmingham, Ladywood

This question is a good example of the complicated difficulties with which we have to deal in regard to this Bill. Flour confectionery was originally in the Second Schedule, but in Committee it was moved into the First Schedule, because the Committee accepted the view that it would be impossible to distinguish between buns and cakes sold as refreshments and those which were sold for consumption at home. Administratively it was difficult to distinguish between the man who wanted to buy a bun or cake to eat in the street and the man who wanted to eat it at home. But when this had been done the bakers and all interests concerned came to the conclusion that while the effect would be to meet the particular difficulties which the Corn-mitt had in mind, it would also enable bakers to open, and indeed would give a direct incentive to certain bakers to open on Sundays. Further consideration therefore was given to it, and this compromise has been worked out. It is not easy to get a solution of this problem, but we think that the hon. Member has found a reasonable and practical solution of the problem.

Amendment agreed to.

3.40 p.m.

Photo of Mr John Banfield Mr John Banfield , Wednesbury

I beg to move, in page 13, line 13, at the end, to insert "(including wafers and edible containers)."

This is a drafting Amendment in order to make it clear that any one who buys an ice cream on a Sunday shall be allowed to buy the wafer or edible container with it.

Amendment agreed to.

3.42 p.m.

Photo of Mr Richard Law Mr Richard Law , Kingston upon Hull South West

I beg to move, in page 13, line 17, after "newspapers," to insert "and at railway station bookstalls of stationery."

The effect of this Amendment is very important. Newspapers can be sold anywhere on a Sunday, but periodicals and magazines are only to be sold at railway station bookstalls. The purpose of the Amendment is to strengthen the Bill and to fulfil those objects that we all have in view by giving necessary leisure to the community and at the same time doing it without detracting from the ordinary services which the public enjoy on a Sunday. It is obvious that the sale of newspapers on a Sunday is not so much Sunday trading as the provision of an essential service to the community. On the other hand I think it is equally the case that the sale of periodicals and magazines, commodities which can be obtained equally well on any other day of the week, is not an essential service to the community, but is in fact Sunday trading. Though it may seem rather a fine distinction it is not really a fine distinction at all, but is a most vital distinction to a very large class of the community and a very industrious class. I mean the numerous small newsagents who are scattered up and down the countryside.

The present position, I understand, is this: Apart from London and the Home counties the great bulk of Sunday newspapers are distributed either by the newsagents in the mornings without opening their shops, or they are distributed by hawkers on the streets. The newsagents have never had any objection to this form of competition, but I understand that about four years ago the publishers of periodicals and magazines began sending their publications to these street sellers direct and not through the regular newsagents, and this has had a considerable effect upon the newsagents' trade. In the City of Hull, where this sort of thing has been happening to a great extent—it happens particularly throughout the North of England—the sale of periodicals and magazines in the streets on Sundays has gone up during the last four years by something like 150 per cent., but at the same time the total sale has remained more or less constant. That means that an enormous amount of trade has been diverted from the newsagents to these Sunday traders, who appear only on Sundays with their barrows, pay no rates and are now becoming most formidable competitors of the newsagents. If this is allowed to continue, the inevitable result will be that newsagents throughout the country will be compelled to open their shops on Sundays in order to meet that competition from the street sellers. If the Amendment is rejected, and the Bill passes as it now stands, the result will be that thousands of shops will be open on Sundays which are not open on that day at present.

The only substantial argument I have heard against the Amendment is the fact that the National Federation of Newsagents is said to be against it and that the Hull branch is the only one which supports it. It is true that officially the National Federation of Newsagents opposes the Amendment, but I think there is very grave reason to suppose that in this matter it does not represent the views of its Members, for it is a fact that less than a year ago there was a. meeting of the Federation at Bournemouth which unanimously carried a resolution to the effect that it was desirable that all newsagents' shops should be closed by 2.30 p.m. on Sunday. That implies that there is no great enthusiasm for Sunday trading on the part of newsagents. I appeal to the House to accept this Amendment. These small newsagents are a very honourable section of the community. Many of them are one-man businesses and they have to work very long hours during the week. If this Amendment is not accepted. we shall be compelling them almost by Act of Parliament to work very long hours not only on six days of the week but on seven days. I hope the House will consider the matter very carefully before it rejects this Amendment.

Photo of Mr Isidore Salmon Mr Isidore Salmon , Harrow

On a point of Order. May I point out that the Amendment in my name was not called?

Photo of Lieut-General Edward Fitzroy Lieut-General Edward Fitzroy , Daventry

It could not be called as there was another Amendment which was almost identical with it.

3.48 p.m.


I hope the House will not accept the Amendment moved by my hon. Friend the Member for South West Hull (Mr. Law). The National Federation of Retail Newsagents consists of 320 branches, and the only branch which requires this Amendment is that referred to by my hon. Friend, namely, the Hull branch. The reason the National Federation opposes this Amendment is not that it desires to have Sunday trading. I would remind the House that the Shops Act, 1928, classed the sale of newspapers, periodicals and magazines as one trade, and if this Amendment were accepted the trade would be faced with a great deal of difficulty in saying what constitutes a newspaper and what constitutes a periodical or magazine. If hon. Members realise that papers such as "Tit Bits" and "John Bull" and other papers are registered as newspapers, they will understand the difficulties that would arise. I am sure that if the hon. Member for South West Hull had considered the matter from that point of view, he would have hesitated before moving this Amendment, which I hope will be rejected.

Photo of Mr Pierse Loftus Mr Pierse Loftus , Lowestoft

The weakness of the case put forward by the hon. Member for South West Hull (Mr. Law) is, as my hon. Friend has pointed out, the fact that of 320 branches of the National Federation of Newsagents, one branch asks for this and the others object to it. Therefore I would ask the hon. Member to withdraw the Amendment.

Photo of Lieut-Colonel Sir Arnold Wilson Lieut-Colonel Sir Arnold Wilson , Hitchin

I think we should be well advised to accept the Amendment and allow the matter to be dealt with further in another place. This is the first attempt we have had this afternoon to restrict Sunday trading and the promoters of the Bill immediately demand that we should reject it. Let us have at least one Amendment which restricts Sunday trading.

3.51 p.m.

Photo of Mr Geoffrey Lloyd Mr Geoffrey Lloyd , Birmingham, Ladywood

With regard to the Amendment dealing with railway book stalls I think the hon. Member for South West Hull (Mr. Law) would be well advised not to press it because there is another and, I think, a better Amendment on the same subject in the name of the hon. and gallant Member for Hitchin (Sir A. Wilson). As regards the second Amendment which the hon. Member has on the Paper to leave out "periodicals and magazines," if a newsagent is allowed to open for the sale of newspapers, it seems reasonable that he should be allowed to sell periodicals and magazines as well. Therefore we are not disposed to accept that Amendment.

3.52 p.m.

Photo of Mr Richard Law Mr Richard Law , Kingston upon Hull South West

I am sorry that the Under-Secretary of State is unable to accept the Amendment. I still believe that the effect of rejecting it is to compel newsagents to open when they do not want to open. The hon. Member for Lincoln (Mr. Liddall) said that the National Federation was against it because of the Shops Act, 1928, which allowed magazines and newspapers to be treated in the same way. Since 1928 there has been

Division No. 159.]AYES.[3.55 p.m.
Cary, R. A.Hume, Sir G. H.Thurtle, E.
Chater, D.Keeling, E. H.Touche, G. C.
Clarke, F. E.McKie, J. H.Walker-Smith, Sir J.
Cobb, Sir C. S.Nall, Sir J.Wilson, Lt.-Col. Sir A. T. (Hitchin)
Duggan, H. J.Pownall, Sir AsshetonWindsor, W. (Hull, C.)
Glucksteln, L. H.Rickards, G. W. (Skipton)
Gretton, Col. Rt. Hon. J.Scott, Lord WilliamTELLERS FOR THE AYES—
Gunston, Capt. D. W.Stourton, Hon. J. J.Mr. Law and Sir Frank Sanderson.
Hellgers, Captain F. F. A.Stuart, Lord C. Crichton- (N'thw'h)
Acland, Rt. Hon. Sir F. DykeFleming, E. L.Mathers, G.
Adams, S. V. T. (Leeds, W.)Frankel, D.Mayhew, Lt.-Col. J.
Adamson, W. M.Furness, S. N.Messer, F.
Albery, I. J.Gardner, B. W.Mills, Sir F. (Leyton, E.)
Alexander, Rt. Hon. A. V. (H'lsbr.)Goodman, Col. A. W.Montague, F.
Allen, Lt.-Col. J. Sandeman (B'kn'hd)Gower, Sir R. V.Morrison, R. C (Tottenham, N.)
Ammon, C. G.Grattan-Doyle, Sir N.Naylor, T. E.
Aske, Sir R. W.Green, W. H. (Deptford)Neven-Spence, Maj. B. H. H.
Astor, Major Hon. J. J. (Dover)Griffith, F. Kingsley (M'ddi'sbro, W.)Oliver, G. H.
Balfour, Capt. H. H.(Isle of Thanet)Griffiths, J. (Llanelly)Orr-Ewing, I. L.
Banfield, J. W.Guest, Hon. I. (Brecon and Radnor)Paling, W.
Barclay-Harvey, C. M.Hall, G. H. (Aberdare)Palmer, G. E. H.
Barnes, A. J.Hall, J. H. (Whitechapel)Parker, H. J. H.
Beaumont, Hon. R. E. B. (Portsm'h)Hamilton, Sir G. C.Parkinson, J. A.
Bennett, Capt. Sir E. N.Hanbury, Sir C.Plugge, L. F.
Bird, Sir R. B.Hannon. Sir P. J. H.Ponsonby, Col. C. E.
Bossom, A. C.Harbord, A.Potts, J.
Bower, Comdr. R. T.Hardie. G. D.Pritt, D, N.
Boyce, H. LeslieHarris, Sir P. A.Proctor, Major H. A.
Briscoe, Capt. R. G.Harvey, G,Purbrick, R.
Broad, F. A.Hallam, Sir J. (Bolton)Rankin, R.
Brocklebank, C. E. R.Henderson, A. (Kingswinford)Rathbone, J. R. (Bodmin)
Bull, B. B.Hepburn, P. G. T. Buchan-Rawson, Sir Cooper
Burgin, Dr. E. L.Herbert, Captain S. (Abbey)Reed, A. C. (Exeter)
Burke, W. A.Holmes, J. S.Reid, W. Allan (Derby)
Castlereagh, ViscountHope, Captain Hon. A. O. J.Robinson, J. R. (Blackpool)
Channon, HJackson, Sir H.Ropner, Colonel L.
Charleton, H. C.Jenkins, A. (Pontypool)Rowlands, G.
Cluse, W. S.Jones, A. C. (Shipley)Salmon, Sir I.
Cocks, F. S.Jones, Sir G. W. H. (S'k N'w'gt'n)Selley, H. R.
Colman, N. C. D.Jones, Morgan (Caerphilly)Shakespeare, G. H.
Cooke, J. D. (Hammersmith, S.)Kelly, W. T.Shaw, Major P. S. (Wavertree)
Critchley, A.Kennedy, Rt. Hon. T.Simpson, F. B.
Crookshank, Capt. H. F. C.Lamb, Sir J. Q.Smith, Ben (Rotherhithe)
Cross, R. H.Lathan, G.Smith, Bracewell (Dulwich)
Crossley, A. C.Lawson, J. J.Somerville, A. A. (Windsor)
Crowder, J. F. E.Leckie, J. A,Sorensen, R. W.
Daggar, G.Leighton, Major B. E. P.Southby, Comdr. A. R. J.
Davies, R. J. (Westhoughton)Leslie, J. R.Spens, W. P.
Davies, S. O. (Merthyr)Llewellin, Lieut.-Col, J. J.Strauss, E. A. (Southwark, N.)
Day, H.Lloyd, G. W.Strauss, G. R. (Lambeth, N.)
De Chair, S. S.Loftus, P. C.Strickland, Captain W. F.
Denville, AlfredLovat-Fraser, J. A.Stuart, Hon. J. (Moray and Nairn)
Dugdale, Major T. L.Mabane, W. (Huddersfield)Sueter, Rear-Admiral Sir M. F.
Duncan, J. A, L.McCorquodale, M. S.Taylor, C. S. (Eastbourne)
Ede, J. C.Macdonald, G. (Ince)Taylor, Vice-Adm. E. A. (Padd., S.)
Edwards, A. (Middlesbrough E.)MacDonald, Sir Murdoch (Inverness)Thomas, J. P. L. (Hereford)
Edwards, Sir C. (Bedwellty)MacLaren, A.Thorne, W.
Eimley, ViscountMainwaring, W. H.Tinker, J. J.
Errington, E.Makins, Brig.-Gen. E.Viant, S. P.
Evans, Capt. A. (Cardiff, S.)Manningham-Buller, Sir M.Wakefield, W. W.
Findlay, Sir E.Margesson, Capt. Rt. Hon. H. D. R.Walkden, A. G.

an enormous development of direct distribution to street sellers, as distinct from newsagents and the situation has changed materially. Whatever the Federation may say, it is this House which is considering the Bill and I think that in defence of the newsagents the House ought to pass the Amendment.

Question put, "That these words be there inserted in the Bill."

The House divided: Ayes, 23; Noes, 162.

Wallace, Captain EuanWilliams, H. G. (Croydon, S.)
Watkins, F. C.Winterton, Rt. Hen. EarlTELLERS FOR THE NOES.—
Wayland, Sir W. A.Woods, G. S. (Finsbury)Mr. Radford and Mr. Liddall.
Williams, E. J. (Ogmore)

It being after Four of the Clock, and objection, being taken, to further Proceeding, further Consideration of the Bill, as amended stood adjourned.

Bill, as amended (in the Standing Committee), to be further considered upon Friday, 8th May.

The remaining Orders were read, and postponed.

Whereupon Mr. SPEAKER adjourned the House, without Question put, pursuant to Standing Order No. 2..

Adjourned at Four Minutes After Four O'Clock, until Monday next, 4th May.