Only a few days to go: We’re raising £25,000 to keep TheyWorkForYou running and make sure people across the UK can hold their elected representatives to account.Donate to our crowdfunder
Peter Atkinson: Order. That is a point of debate, not a question for the Chair.
Peter Atkinson: Order. I am sorry to interrupt the hon. Gentleman, but I would be grateful if he would keep an eye on the clock. He has been speaking for more than 10 minutes, and we need to hear the Minister.
Peter Atkinson: I present a petition on behalf of 29 constituents in the Hexham constituency on home education. Following is the full text of the petition: [ The Petition of persons resident in the Hexham parliamentary constituency, Declares that they are concerned about the recommendations of the Badman Report, which suggests closer monitoring of home educators, including a compulsory annual registration...
Peter Atkinson: The Leader of the House did not answer the question asked by my right hon. Friend the Member for North-West Hampshire (Sir George Young) about the dates of the Easter recess. What is her problem?
Peter Atkinson: When the Minister meets his colleagues in the Department for Children, Schools and Families, will he remind them of a report produced by the then Department of the Environment called "Lighting in the Countryside: Towards Good Practice"? That was published 12 years ago and highlighted the danger of poorly planned lighting schemes in rural communities and market towns. Since then, very little...
Peter Atkinson: I wish to say a few brief words from our Front Bench in support of the comments made by my hon. Friend the Member for Newbury (Mr. Benyon). I did not serve on the Committee, so this is the first time that I have been able to comment on this part of the Bill. Like him, I think it is regrettable that this whole matter of coastal access was put into a very important Bill dealing with marine...
Peter Atkinson: I was intrigued to see that an amendment to the White Herring Fisheries Act was coming up for debate. If one was in the habit of filibustering in the House, which we used to do, that would have been a marvellous subject to keep us engaged for several hours. I am quite sure that many hon. Members would wish to talk about that Act. I hope that the Minister, if he will not accept the amendment...
Peter Atkinson: Does the Minister have any idea how many postal workers, particularly in London, have second jobs? It is the threat that they might have to work a full shift for which they are paid that is adding to the militancy. [ Interruption. ]
Peter Atkinson: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how much Natural England has spent on red squirrel conservation in the last five years.
Peter Atkinson: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what recent assessment he has made of the effect on biodiversity of the implementation of the provisions of section 40 of the Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act 2006; and whether his Department has issued recent guidance to local authorities in respect of applications to create (a) byways open to all traffic and...
Peter Atkinson: I add my thanks to the Clerks, the Hansard writers, the doorkeepers and the police for keeping us straight in Committee. I also thank all members of the Committee, which has been good-natured. Incredibly for what normally is a fairly boring subject—the Finance Bill—it has been very amusing from time to time. I appreciate how much hard work goes into it. The matters are very...
Peter Atkinson: Order. It is a new clause.
Peter Atkinson: We now move to the new clauses. Hon. Members may remember that they debated new clause 3 on Thursday 14 May. As a result, I think that the Opposition requested a Division on it.
Peter Atkinson: Order. I would be grateful if the Minister did not respond to that intervention.
Peter Atkinson: With this it will be convenient to discuss Government amendments 322 to 332.
Peter Atkinson: Up to now we have been more or less doing that, and I am happy for that to continue if it is more helpful to the Committee.
Peter Atkinson: I did. The Minister was not here in the earlier stages. When we have a simple one or two-line clause introducing a schedule, the tradition is to debate the two together, so if the Minister would like to speak to the clause and the schedule, that would be fine.
Peter Atkinson: Order. I am listening carefully to the hon. Gentleman and he seems to be straying very wide of the clause, which deals with the meaning of “gaming machine” and “gaming”.
Peter Atkinson: Order. I am not sure how relevant that is to the clause.
Peter Atkinson: Order. We are getting a little noisy. We know that the Speaker does not like a lot of noise, so can we keep things a little quieter, please?