Clause 6 - Royal Patriotic Fund Corporation

Armed Forces – in a Public Bill Committee at 10:15 am on 24th February 2004.

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Question proposed, That the clause stand part of the Bill.

Photo of Mr Ivor Caplin Mr Ivor Caplin Parliamentary Under-Secretary, Ministry of Defence

I shall briefly introduce the clause. The hon. Member for Faversham and Mid-Kent (Hugh Robertson) is not here, but he was the only person apart from my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State to raise it on Second Reading. The clause provides for the property and functions of the Royal Patriotic Fund Corporation—a charitable body established under the Patriotic Fund Reorganisation Act 1903 to assist widows and other dependants of members of Her Majesty's armed forces—to be transferred to a successor body and for the corporation to be dissolved.

There are six subsections in the clause, and schedule 2 is linked to it, but I do not intend to go through them all. Subsection (1), which is the main provision, enables the Secretary of State to make an order transferring or providing for the transfer of the property, rights and liabilities of the corporation to a charity registered under the Charities Act 1993 established for the assistance of widows or widowers, children and other dependants of former members of the armed forces or reserve forces.

With those comments, I commend the clause to the Committee.

Photo of Gerald Howarth Gerald Howarth Shadow Minister (Defence)

I am sure that the Committee is grateful to the Minister for telling us about the Royal Patriotic Fund Corporation. It is a splendid title, and one to which every Tory should subscribe, as it has everything in it: royal, patriotic and fund.

Will the Minister assure the Committee that he will keep us posted about the development of the change that he has described? It should not just happen and be forgotten about. The House of Commons should be kept informed.

Photo of Mr Ivor Caplin Mr Ivor Caplin Parliamentary Under-Secretary, Ministry of Defence

I am happy to give that commitment, and will ensure that the House of Commons is kept informed.

Question put and agreed to.

Clause 6 ordered to stand part of the Bill.

Schedule 2 agreed to.