It is my privilege today to present a petition from the Scottish Old Age Pensions Association.
That petition, from the officers and members of that association, showeth:
That the present lack of provision for fuel allowances for pensioners in respect of electricity, gas, coal and paraffin causes great hardship, especially in view of the rapidly rising cost of fuel, and
That the deterioration in real terms since its introduction of the Christmas bonus makes it necessary to increase that bonus to £20.
Wherefore your Petitioners pray that your Honourable House may make every effort to secure the introduction of a comprehensive system of fuel allowances for all pensioners, together with the increase of the Christmas bonus to £20.
And your Petitioners, as in duty bound, will ever pray, &c.
A petition in similar terms has been signed by more than 60,000 pensioners and supporters in Scotland. It will be delivered to the Prime Minister.
One of the prime movers in the collection of names for this petition was Mr. Tom Oswald, whom right hon. and hon. Members will remember with affection since he served in this House representing Edinburgh, Central. Unfortunately, I have gathered today that Mr. Oswald has been taken seriously ill and I am sure that in accepting this petition the House will also wish Tom Oswald a speedy recovery.