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National Lottery Bill

Part of the debate – in a Public Bill Committee at 10:30 am on 25th October 2005.

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Photo of Richard Caborn Richard Caborn Minister of State (Sport), Department for Culture, Media & Sport 10:30 am, 25th October 2005

I beg to move,

That—

(1) during proceedings on the National Lottery Bill, in addition to its first meeting on Tuesday 25th October at 10.30 am, the Standing Committee shall meet on Tuesday 25th October at 4.00 pm, Thursday 27th October at 9.30 am and 1.00 pm, Tuesday 1st November at 10.30 am and 4.00 pm and Thursday 3rd November at 9.30 am and 1.00 pm;

(2) the proceedings shall be taken in the order shown below and shall (so far as not previously concluded) be brought to a conclusion at 5.00 pm on Thursday 3rd November: Clause 7; Clause 19; Clause 13; Schedule 2; Clause 14; Clauses 8 to 12; Clauses 15 to 18; Clause 20; Schedule 3; Clauses 21 to 23; Clauses 1 to 6; Schedule 1; remaining proceedings on the Bill.

I thought for a moment that we were going for ''The Full Monty'', Mr. Cook. I welcome you—and your colleague, Mr. Gale—to the Chair. I have no doubt that your chairmanship of our deliberations will, as usual, be fair, impartial and above all productive. I do not doubt that our proceedings will be punctuated by your north-east wit . They say that flattery gets you everywhere.

The programme motion was agreed by the Programming Sub-Committee. I thank Committee members for agreeing to bring proceedings to an early conclusion next Tuesday to accommodate the fact that I have to go to Cardiff for the sports cabinet, which is an important meeting. I welcome Committee members, some of whose faces I recognise from the Committee that met but a few days ago to consider the London Olympics Bill. Indeed, one Committee member said that he was spending more time with fellow members of Committee than with his own wife. However, there are some new Members here, too. I hope that this Committee is as productive as that which considered the London Olympics Bill, but there will probably be slightly more dissention on this Bill.

I welcome the hon. Member for East Devon (Mr. Swire), who spoke quite eloquently on Second Reading back in the summer. I have no doubt that he will bring up in Committee some of the issues that he mentioned then. The hon. Member for Bath (Mr. Foster) also spoke on Second Reading. I am sure that we will reflect on some of his amendments and that we will have some good debates on the points of principle that he raised then.  

Some time has passed since Second Reading, which took place in June, so I remind the Committee that the Bill is designed to take the lottery forward along what we can call its evolutionary path. We can all be very proud of the fact that we run one of the best lotteries in the world—if not the best. That statement has been endorsed many times over by people are voting with their feet and continuing to play the lottery in their millions every week. That shows that it is a good product—one that is in tune with the British people. The consultation is important in that respect, too.

The Bill will open up the lottery to the people—that is at the centre of the Bill, but that is for later—by giving them a say in the lottery. I think that the Bill will make sure that the lottery goes from strength to strength, and I look forward to debating the finer points of the Bill in the coming eight sittings.