Results 21–40 of 1703 for speaker:Mr Gordon Oakes

Local Government Bill [Lords] (20 Jan 1992)

Mr Gordon Oakes: I intend to speak about part II. I assure the Secretary of State for the Environment that we are opposed not to the principle of revision of local government but to the ridiculous way in which the Government are attempting to do it. The Opposition will therefore vote against part II, just as we shall vote against part I. Before I deal with part II, may I say how much I agree with what my hon....

Local Government Bill [Lords] (20 Jan 1992)

Mr Gordon Oakes: If it is dogma, it is the dogma of democracy. It is the dogma of believing that those who are elected to do a job do it. It is ridiculous for the Government to proceed in this way. It will affect quality. Moreover, the widest possible powers will be given to the Secretary of State. He will be able to decide, on whim, what services shall be privatised and what services shall not be privatised....

Local Government Bill [Lords] (20 Jan 1992)

Mr Gordon Oakes: I cannot give the exact figure, but the figure would be far less than 1 per cent. I turn now to part II which deals with the dramatic restructuring that will be entailed. I have to declare to the House not a financial interest but the fact that I am the honorary vice president of the Association of County Councils and that I have held that post for many years. [HON. MEMBERS: "Oh!"] It is an...

Local Government Bill [Lords] (20 Jan 1992)

Mr Gordon Oakes: I understand the hon. Gentleman's point. I served on the Committee that bitterly opposed the ideas of the then Conservative Government, yet no notice was taken of his constituents' concerns. I would not object to the old east riding and Lincolnshire again becoming two separate counties because their marriage has been unnatural and uneasy. At the end of the loyal toast, even in London, where...

Local Government Bill [Lords] (20 Jan 1992)

Mr Gordon Oakes: The hon. Gentleman says "No", but what does "joint committees" mean? It would mean not unitary local government with authorities being individually responsible for services but an expensive, bureaucratic hotchpotch of unselected bodies and committees unaccountable and unintelligible to the public, unable to switch resources between each other and arguing endlessly about crucial decisions.

Local Government Bill [Lords] (20 Jan 1992)

Mr Gordon Oakes: My hon. Friend is absolutely right. Although the Government say that this should be the exception rather than the rule, as the great Nye Bevan used to say, "Why look into the crystal ball when you can read the book?" The Greater London council and the other metropolitan councils show what will happen. More than 60 per cent. of metropolitan counties became three joint boards for police, fire...

Orders of the Day — Child Support Bill [Lords] (4 Jun 1991)

Mr Gordon Oakes: The only thing that I share with the hon. Member for Littleborough and Saddleworth (Mr. Dickens) is his distrust of the court system in settling maintenance matters. However, the hon. Gentleman said that this measure will save the taxpayer many millions of pounds. That statement goes to the root of Conservative Members' thinking—it is a matter not of child support but of how much the...

Orders of the Day — Child Support Bill [Lords] (4 Jun 1991)

Mr Gordon Oakes: I have not practised for 20 years, so I cannot advise my hon. Friend. However, I hope that such a woman would have the right to legal aid; otherwise, she will be in an impossible position. If she had to represent herself, realistically, she would not then be able to contest the matter. The Government have some difficulties with the Bill, but we would have similar difficulties if we were in...

Orders of the Day — National Curriculum (29 Apr 1991)

Mr Gordon Oakes: I shall not detain the House long as I know that other hon. Members wish to speak. In what was a most disingenuous speech, the Secretary of State was really telling the House that the orders do nothing. We know that that is not the case, and so do the Historical Association and the teaching profession. I would make the same speech if we were in government, trying to persuade the House to...

Orders of the Day — National Curriculum (29 Apr 1991)

Mr Gordon Oakes: I promised Mr. Speaker that I would be brief. I hope that the hon. Gentleman gets a chance to speak. It would be perfectly feasible for a teacher to discuss western interference in the middle east and its effects on history. The purpose of teaching history is not to recount a list of facts but for children to learn about the past in relation to the present and apply that knowledge to future...

Orders of the Day — New Roads and Street Works Bill [Lords] (5 Mar 1991)

Mr Gordon Oakes: Unlike the hon. Member for Wellingborough (Mr. Fry), I do not like the Bill at all. I do not like parts I, II, III or IV. Like the hon. Gentleman, I am astonished that the Opposition will not divide the House tonight. I wish that they would. Parts I and II expand the role of toll roads and bridges. It would be a progressive policy to abolish tolls on some roads. The hon. Member for Southport...

Orders of the Day — Caravans (Standard Community Charge and Rating) Bill (3 Dec 1990)

Mr Gordon Oakes: I have considerable sympathy with the views of the hon. Member for Weston-super-Mare (Mr. Wiggin). I want to ask some technical questions, ranging a little more widely than his. The fact that we are debating the Bill at all means that the Government know and accept that they have made a mistake; otherwise, there would be no need for it. I fear, however, that they are compounding their error....

Orders of the Day — Caravans (Standard Community Charge and Rating) Bill (3 Dec 1990)

Mr Gordon Oakes: I do not agree entirely with my hon. Friend about that. He says that a caravan is not a vehicle; it is a motor home. One can both live and travel in a motor home. That rests on a pitch, just as a caravan rests on a pitch. This is a difficult problem. That is why the Government, their advisers and the draftsmen have got it wrong. They do not understand what a caravan is.

Orders of the Day — Caravans (Standard Community Charge and Rating) Bill (3 Dec 1990)

Mr Gordon Oakes: I am complaining not about the 1984 legislation but about the 1988 legislation that the Government tried to rush through the House. Why are we debating this Bill as if it were emergency legislation similar to the Prevention of Terrorism (Temporary Provisions) Act 1974? I realise that it is only a two-clause Bill, but why deal with all its stages in one night? It may be a minor matter that...

Orders of the Day — Food Safety Bill [Lords]: Food Irradiation Commission (7 Jun 1990)

Mr Gordon Oakes: I support new clause 1 and the new clause tabled by the Liberal Democratic party, which goes into somewhat more detail. Both are a step in the right direction. Like the hon. Member for Truro (Mr. Taylor) and my hon. Friend the Member for South Shields (Dr. Clark), I am amazed at the obsessive determination of the Government, who have an almost evangelical zeal for irradiation. We have heard...

Prayers: Channel Tunnel Rail Link (18 May 1990)

Mr Gordon Oakes: I welcome the speech of the right hon. Member for Blackpool, South (Sir P. Blaker) and echo his remarks. Like him, I represent the north-west—I am a Cheshire Member of Parliament—and we are extremely worried at the delay which could result from today's debate. The hon. Member for Southwark and Bermondsey (Mr. Hughes) in a clever intervention said that if the House today makes it clear...

Prayers: Channel Tunnel Rail Link (18 May 1990)

Mr Gordon Oakes: —and Ladies wish to speak. Hon. Members, especially those who represent the north, Scotland and Northern Ireland, think that the proposal for King's Cross is the best that we have now. We talk at our peril about scrapping it. The probable cost will be delay far into the next century before we get a proper second London terminal.

Orders of the Day — Environmental Protection Bill: Variation of Authorisations by Enforcing Authority (30 Apr 1990)

Mr Gordon Oakes: I cannot understand why the Minister is giving directions when in almost every other clause he is making regulations. It seems to me, and particularly to the chemicals industry, that regulations would be far better than directions because it is essential that the people dealing with and controlling the processes have a clear understanding of the requirements from the outset. Directions tend...

Orders of the Day — Environmental Protection Bill: Public Registers of Information (30 Apr 1990)

Mr Gordon Oakes: I should like to speak to amendment (a) to new clause 13. I thank the Minister for his customary courtesy and thoroughness in referring in his opening speech to that amendment, how he regards it and the reason for subsection (6) being included in the Bill. My amendment comes from the chemical industry via the Chemical Industries Association. As the Minister knows, I have a considerable...

Orders of the Day — Food Safety Bill [Lords] (8 Mar 1990)

Mr Gordon Oakes: I agree with very much of what was said by the hon. Member for Medway (Dame P. Fenner) and especially with her remarks about education in food and food hygiene—a matter about which I shall say more later. I agree even with the hon. Lady's welcome for the Bill. Indeed, I think that the legislation is welcomed by most Opposition Members. However, the function of an Opposition is to...


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