Orders of the Day — Heating Appliances (Fireguards) Bill

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 27th June 1952.

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Photo of Mr Denys Bullard Mr Denys Bullard , South West Norfolk 12:00 am, 27th June 1952

I beg to move, "That the Bill be now read the Third time."

There has been extremely full discussion on this Bill both on Second Reading and in Committee, and there is agreement on all sides of the House on its general principles. The Bill aims at a very simple human purpose, namely, the reduction of the number of burn accidents in the home. It aims particularly at two classes of burn accidents, those caused to children and those caused by clothing catching in an exposed element or flame. I think the purposes of the Bill were rather wittily summed up by the editor of a local paper in my division who said that two possible alternative titles for the Bill might be "The Lady's not for Burning" or "Why should Christopher Fry?"

However, this is a serious and important matter. The Bill does not aim at mollycoddling. It still requires people to exercise ordinary commonsense precautions in the home. It has been criticised for the fact that it does not go far enough, and to those who complain that many other classes of heating appliances should have been included in it I would only say that we hope it may be the forerunner of other Bills which will play their part in preventing a number of accidents in the home, particularly in connection with electrical appliances concerning which other forms of accidents other than burning are apt to occur.

In conclusion, I wish to express my thanks to all hon. and right hon. Gentlemen who have helped the passage of this Bill through its various stages, and to the Home Office and to the Parliamentary draftsmen who have been concerned with it in all its stages. Although I think tribute has already been paid before in this respect, I should like once again to pay tribute to the work of Dr. and Mrs. Colebrook and to the many other surgeons and medical men who are, after all, in the best position to appreciate this particular danger. I should like to thank them for all the assistance and the inspiration which they have given me throughout all the stages of this Measure.