Power to grant a lease in respect of land at Kew Gardens

Part of Kew Gardens (Leases) (No. 3) Bill [Lords] – in the House of Commons at 4:28 pm on 24th July 2019.

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Photo of Steve Pound Steve Pound Shadow Minister (Northern Ireland) 4:28 pm, 24th July 2019

The parliamentary secateurs—if not the snips—certainly should have been exhibited earlier on.

Kew Gardens is not just a world centre and seed bank; it is also a place of huge entertainment. My hon. Friend Luke Pollard talked about a concrete and steel part of the world that is illuminated and enlivened by this patch of green. Actually we are not all concrete and steel in west London, but we are grateful for that patch of green. Many of us will go along to the exhibitions, and not just the incredible Christmas celebrations—[Interruption.] What? I am sorry, Mr Deputy Speaker, but it always hurts me when a voice from the Rhondda is in any way attacking me. Kew is not just a place of great entertainment and an extraordinary resource for the world; it also has a new function nowadays. All over London we have these pop-up gardens on large, soulless council estates, and it is Kew that people go to for information on this. It is Kew that provides the details of plants that do not need a huge amount of watering or that can be resistant to problems. I am glad to see that the leader of the all-party parliamentary group on horticulture and gardening, Rebecca Pow, is on the Front Bench today. I trust that that means she has been promoted. All I can say is that Kew is for the world; it is not just for us in London. The Minister has done an excellent job, and I hope that we can leave aside the sourness and bitterness that may occasionally have been exhibited this afternoon and celebrate the glory that is Kew.

Question put and agreed to.

Bill accordingly read the Third time and passed.