Clause 2. — (Bonus Payments and Loans in Respect of Forward Contracts.)

Part of Orders of the Day — Cereals Marketing Bill – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 9th March 1965.

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Photo of Mr James Prior Mr James Prior , Lowestoft 12:00 am, 9th March 1965

In one respect this Amendment has taken my name in vain. First, it shows the impartial attitude that we on this side took in Committee to the whole business of putting down Amendments, having in mind the farmers, on the one hand, and the agricultural merchants, on the other.

Information has now appeared in the Press of the letter I received from the agricultural merchants, who pointed out that the Amendment we wished to move was not one that they could accept. How that private letter to me got into the hands of the farming Press is still a mystery, but I should like to say that the information certainly did not come from myself or my hon. Friends. In any case, that letter was not to our advantage.

The point was an important one, and we felt that neither the Bill as originally drafted nor the Amendment tabled in Committee by the Minister met that point. We are, therefore, grateful to the right hon. Gentleman for making this change now. I hope that as a result of the Government's now moving an Amendment to meet the point people outside the House who accused us of delay in Committee, taking the example of this Amendment and the letter, will now realise the error of their ways.