Trustee Bill [H.L.]

– in the House of Lords at 3:37 pm on 29th June 2000.

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Photo of Lord Irvine of Lairg Lord Irvine of Lairg Lord Chancellor, Lord Chancellor's Department, Lord Chancellor 3:37 pm, 29th June 2000

My Lords, I have it in command from Her Majesty the Queen and His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales to notify the House that, having been informed of the purport of the Trustee Bill, have consented to place their prerogative and interests so far as they are affected by the Bill at the disposal of Parliament for the purposes of the Bill.

Bill read a third time.

Schedule 2 [Minor and consequential amendments]:

Photo of Lord Irvine of Lairg Lord Irvine of Lairg Lord Chancellor, Lord Chancellor's Department, Lord Chancellor

My Lords, as I indicated on Report, it has become necessary to introduce amendments at this late stage to take into account the coming into force of the Cathedrals Measure 1999 since the original publication of this Bill. I was grateful on that occasion to the noble Lords, Lord Kingsland and Lord Goodhart, for their generous indications that they were unlikely to find fault with them.

The provisions of the 1999 Measure are brought into force through some rather complex transitional provisions which mean, in effect, that the investment powers under the Cathedrals Measure 1963, which before the coming into force of the 1999 Measure applied to all cathedrals, will continue to have effect in respect of cathedrals which do not, for the time being, attract the provisions of the 1999 Measure. Once a cathedral attracts the 1999 provisions, the 1963 provisions will cease to have effect in relation to that cathedral. This group of four amendments sets out to achieve that end in respect of the powers of investment granted to cathedral bodies which, under both Measures, are derived from the 1961 Trustee Investments Act. With your Lordships' leave, I shall speak to these four amendments together.

Amendment No. 1 simply removes from Part III of Schedule 2 the amendment which was originally to be made to the 1963 Measure. Amendment No. 2 makes an amendment to the 1999 Measure, substantially similar to that removed by the Government's first amendment today, substituting the general power of investment in this Bill for the powers in the Trustee Investments Act 1961.

Amendment No. 3 makes provision such that for as long as the 1963 Measure continues to apply to any cathedral, the powers of investment that derive from it shall be the general power of investment under this Bill. Amendment No. 4 is entirely consequential and adds to Part II of Schedule 4 the details of the repeal carried out by Amendment No. 2. I beg to move.

Photo of Lord Goodhart Lord Goodhart Liberal Democrat

My Lords, I am happy to tell the noble and learned Lord the Lord Chancellor that my lengthy researches into the Cathedrals Measures of 1963 and 1999 have convinced me that these amendments are wholly appropriate.

Photo of Viscount Bridgeman Viscount Bridgeman Conservative

My Lords, my noble friend Lord Kingsland has also indicated his agreement to this amendment. I am happy to agree.

Photo of Earl Ferrers Earl Ferrers Conservative

My Lords, perhaps I may ask the noble and learned Lord the Lord Chancellor a question. I am the High Steward of Norwich Cathedral but I was not aware of these Measures. Will the noble and learned Lord be kind enough to say how they will affect Norwich Cathedral?

Photo of Lord Irvine of Lairg Lord Irvine of Lairg Lord Chancellor, Lord Chancellor's Department, Lord Chancellor

My Lords, as always, I shall be happy to correspond with the noble Earl and to give him the guidance that he seeks--at no cost to himself.

On Question, amendment agreed to.

Photo of Lord Irvine of Lairg Lord Irvine of Lairg Lord Chancellor, Lord Chancellor's Department, Lord Chancellor

moved Amendments Nos. 2 to 4:

Page 27, line 19, at end insert--

("The Cathedrals Measure 1999 (No. 1)

. In section 16 (cathedral moneys: investment powers, etc.), in subsection (1)--

(a) for paragraph (c) substitute--

"(c) power to invest in any investments in which trustees may invest under the general power of investment in section 3 of the Trustee Act 2000 (as restricted by sections 4 and 5 of that Act),", and.

(b) omit the words from "and the powers" to the end of the subsection.").

Page 28, line 19, at end insert--

("The Cathedrals Measure 1963 (No. 2)

. While section 21 of the Cathedrals Measure 1963 (investment powers, etc. of capitular bodies) continues to apply in relation to any cathedral, that section shall have effect as if--

(a) in subsection (1), for paragraph (c) and the words from "and the powers" to the end of the subsection there were substituted--

"(c) power to invest in any investments in which trustees may invest under the general power of investment in section 3 of the Trustee Act 2000 (as restricted by sections 4 and 5 of that Act).", and.

(b) in subsection (5), for "subsections (2) and (3) of section six of the Trustee Investments Act 1961" there were substituted "section 5 of the Trustee Act 2000".").

Page 29, line 31, at end insert--

("1999 No. 1. The Cathedrals Measure 1999. In section 16(1), the words from "and the powers" to the end of the subsection.")

Photo of Lord Irvine of Lairg Lord Irvine of Lairg Lord Chancellor, Lord Chancellor's Department, Lord Chancellor

My Lords, I have already spoken to these amendments. I beg to move.

On Question, amendments agreed to.

Photo of Lord Dahrendorf Lord Dahrendorf Liberal Democrat

My Lords, perhaps I may ask for your indulgence to make a very brief statement. As a Member of the Delegated Powers and Deregulation Committee I am exposed, if that is the word, to all Bills which come to your Lordships' House. This encourages me to make one comparative comment. The Bill, which I hope will pass shortly, is fairly short, well focused and quite clear. It is a Bill which reduces burdens rather than adds new ones. The noble and learned Lord the Lord Chancellor has been not only courteous throughout the passage of the Bill, but he and his department were ready to listen and to engage in open discussion. The amendments moved were not afterthoughts or remedies of bad drafting, but the result of debate--and they were produced on time. The result is that some of us are left with a feeling of considerable satisfaction. I am, certainly, and I participated throughout.

I want to thank the noble and learned Lord the Lord Chancellor for reminding us that such sentiments are possible at the end of the debate on a Bill. I wonder whether he will find it possible to inform some of his ministerial colleagues of this practice.

Photo of Lord Irvine of Lairg Lord Irvine of Lairg Lord Chancellor, Lord Chancellor's Department, Lord Chancellor

My Lords, the noble Lord is very kind. He has succeeded in cheering me up. I shall draw his words to the attention of my colleagues.

On Question, Bill passed, and sent to the Commons