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Reference to Arbitration of Refusal or Failure to Give Consent or of Condition Attached to Consent.

Part of Orders of the Day — Agricultural Tenancies Bill [Lords] – in the House of Commons at 5:15 pm on 19th April 1995.

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Photo of Mr Paul Tyler Mr Paul Tyler , North Cornwall 5:15 pm, 19th April 1995

I pay tribute to the Minister for listening to a number of hon. Members, including myself. Indeed, I spoke on the tenant right issue on Second Reading. That was an important subject, which we returned to on a number of occasions in Committee. He has come up with an admirable solution to the problem.

Few of us were happy with the idea of a schedule of all the different tenant right compensation opportunities that might occur because those might change. The last thing that we want is to put on statute something that might become anachronistic in a comparatively short time or, by so doing, to exclude some other normal husbandry practice that might develop in the years to come.

The concept of routine improvement and the definition in amendment No. 10 seems admirable. If the industry and valuers think that they can work with it, the House will probably find that it will be a practical application of the principles with which we were all concerned.

I note the Minister's remarks about the need to restrain arbitration costs. That is important. We may find that, if the legislation is undermined, it will be only because the problems of compensation and arbitration become intractable. Therefore, people would seek to avoid those problems by various means and we may have to come back to the matter.

The legislation's main principles will prove to be well founded, but I am concerned about the problems of cost. Clearly, where a comparatively small sum is involved in the compensation that may be payable, to go to expensive arbitration would be absurd. I hope that amendment No. 11 will meet that point.

I hope that the House will support the proposals. I believe them to be extremely important for the success of the whole Bill. I give them my support.