3.2 pm

Animal Welfare Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 2:45 pm on 26th January 2006.

Alert me about debates like this

Sitting suspended for a Division in the House.

On resuming—

Photo of Philip Hollobone Philip Hollobone Conservative, Kettering

This is a serious issue that I am afraid the Government are not being robust enough in addressing. Parliament has talked about this issue over many years. Almost 15 years ago, the Home Affairs Committee recommended lots of changes to independent tracks, but, effectively very little has happened in that time. The Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee also recommended that the Government take a serious look at the industry. I appreciate why the Minister says that he wants to give the industry time, but, from my perspective, it has had enough time.

This is a wonderful opportunity to say to the industry, “We want you to introduce these improvements and to do so within two years.” That is not an unreasonable time scale. The industry could fund the changes, because hundreds of millions of pounds are made by bookmakers and their clients who bet on greyhound racing. It would also provide the Minister with a quick win as far as animal welfare is concerned. Before we come back for the next election, I would be proud to stand up and praise him for the changes brought about in the greyhound industry as a result of the measures introduced in the Bill. We could have a family-friendly, extremely popular, animal welfare-led greyhound industry that would be a credit   to this country and the world. I hope that the Government will not miss this opportunity and I would like to put the matter to the vote.

Question put, That the clause be read a Second time:—

The Committee divided: Ayes 5, Noes 10.

Division number 5 Nimrod Review — Statement — 3.2 pm

Aye: 4 MPs

No: 9 MPs

Ayes: A-Z by last name

Nos: A-Z by last name

NOES

Question accordingly negatived.