Hansard (Bound Volumes)

Oral Answers to Questions — National Finance – in the House of Commons on 25th April 1944.

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Photo of Commander William King-Hall Commander William King-Hall , Ormskirk

asked the Financial Secretary to the Treasury what was the cost to a Member of the House of Commons of the bound volumes of the House of Commons HANSARD for the Session 1943–44.

Photo of Mr Ralph Assheton Mr Ralph Assheton , Rushcliffe

For the Session 1943–44 two volumes have been issued to date at a price of 9s. 6d. and 10s. respectively.

Photo of Sir Charles Taylor Sir Charles Taylor , Eastbourne

In view of the fact that hon. Members who try to carry out their duties conscientiously have to refer to HANSARD, which they have to read frequently at week-ends, does the right hon. Gentleman think it right that hon. Members should be put to this expense?

Photo of Mr Ralph Assheton Mr Ralph Assheton , Rushcliffe

My hon. and gallant Friend will recollect that the discontinuance, as a war-time economy, of the free supply of bound volumes was a recommendation of the Select Committee on Publications and Debates Reports.

Photo of Commander William King-Hall Commander William King-Hall , Ormskirk

asked the Financial Secretary to the Treasury whether Members of the House of Lords receive the bound volumes of their Debates free of charge if they intimate their desire to receive these volumes.

Photo of Commander William King-Hall Commander William King-Hall , Ormskirk

In view of the fact that members of another place receive HANSARD free of charge, will the right hon. Gentleman consider restoring this privilege, if hon. Members indicate their desire for it?

Photo of Mr Ralph Assheton Mr Ralph Assheton , Rushcliffe

I admit that this is an anomaly. Of course, there are other anomalies; for example, Members of another place do not receive salaries.

Photo of Mr Aneurin Bevan Mr Aneurin Bevan , Ebbw Vale

In view of the answer now given by the Financial Secretary to the Treasury, that Members of another place are not paid salaries and therefore receive free bound volumes of HANSARD, do we now understand that the issue of free bound volumes constitutes a payment to the House of Lords? Are they now in receipt of salaries?

Photo of Mr Ralph Assheton Mr Ralph Assheton , Rushcliffe

I merely mentioned an example of other anomalies.

Photo of Mr Aneurin Bevan Mr Aneurin Bevan , Ebbw Vale

But are they now in receipt of salaries?

Photo of Mr William Woolley Mr William Woolley , Spen Valley

Can the right hon. Gentleman say how many hon. Members subscribe for these bound volumes and how much is saved annually?

Photo of Mr Ralph Assheton Mr Ralph Assheton , Rushcliffe

I have not the figures of how much is saved annually, but 62 hon. Members now purchase the bound volumes.

Photo of Mr Emanuel Shinwell Mr Emanuel Shinwell , Seaham

In view of the dissatisfaction of hon. Members, particularly because of the opportunity afforded Members of another place to obtain volumes free, will the right hon. Gentleman reconsider the matter, so that hon. Members, if they so desire, may have them?

Photo of Mr Ralph Assheton Mr Ralph Assheton , Rushcliffe

I will certainly examine it again.