Duchy Business

Oral Answers to Questions — Duchy of Lancaster – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 15th July 1991.

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Photo of Harry Cohen Harry Cohen , Leyton 12:00 am, 15th July 1991

To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster what proportion of his time he spent on official Duchy business in the last month.

Photo of Mr Chris Patten Mr Chris Patten , Bath

I spend up to a quarter of my time carrying out my duties as Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster. Thanks to the hon. Gentleman getting in with his question, the percentage has increased slightly.

Photo of Harry Cohen Harry Cohen , Leyton

As part of those duties, the Chancellor must be getting lots of representations about saving the regiment in his area. What about the regiments that run our hospitals and schools, work on our buses and trains and manufacture our goods and products? Has not the Conservative party shown that it is incapable of saving those regiments? Even without the right hon. Member for Finchley (Mrs. Thatcher) at the helm, are not the Conservatives still a monstrous regiment?

Photo of Mr Chris Patten Mr Chris Patten , Bath

I hope that that is the end of regimental metaphors for the time being. I have had none of the representations that the hon. Gentleman suggests I have, although I have had some representations that the country should be saved from Labour's defence policy, whatever that may be.