§ (1) There shall be paid to the trustees hereinafter mentioned as a provision for the benefit of His Majesty's children (other than the Duke of Cornwall for the time being) an annual sum of ten thousand pounds in respect of each son (other than the Duke of Cornwall for the time being) who attains the age of twenty-one years, and a further annual sum of fifteen thousand pounds in respect of each such son who marries, and an annual sum of six thousand pounds in respect of each daughter who attains the age of twenty-one years or marries:2264
§ Provided that the sum payable in respect of any such son or daughter shall cease to be paid in the event of the death of that son or daughter.
§ (2) The persons who are for the time being the First Commissioner of His Majesty's Treasury, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, and the Keeper of His Majesty's Privy Purse shall be the Royal trustees, and shall be a body corporate by that name, and any act of the trustees may be signified under the hands and seals of the persons who are the trustees for the time being.
§ (3) The trustees shall hold the annual sums paid to them under this Section, in trust for all or any one or more of the children of His Majesty (other than the Duke of Cornwall for the time being), in such shares, at such times, in such manner, and subject to such conditions and powers of revocation (including, if it is thought fit, a condition against alienation) as His present Majesty may by order countersigned by the First Commissioner of His Majesty's Treasury and the Chancellor of the Exchequer, appoint:
§ Provided that any such appointment may be varied by another order made and countersigned in like manner.
§ Motion made, and Question proposed, "That the Clause stand part of the Bill."
§ Mr. KEIR HARDIE
I beg to move in Sub-section (1) to leave out the word "ten" ["an annual sum of ten thousand pounds"] and to insert instead thereof the word "six."
The proposal contained in the Clause is that each son, on attaining the age of twenty-one, shall receive £10,000 per annum, and each daughter, on attaining the same age, shall receive £6,000 per annum. Then the sons are further favoured, inasmuch, as when they marry they are to be indulged to the extent of £15,000 per annum, and there is no suitable provision made for the daughters when they marry. We, on these Benches, have always advocated equal pay for equal work. It is a good principle that a woman performing the same work as a man shall receive the same pay, and that practice is carried out in its fullest effect in the Lancashire cotton trade. I stated, on the Second Reading, that this was a proposal to enable the younger sons of the Monarch to live lives of luxury, idleness and ease. I do not say that they will lead such lives—I 2265 hope they will have more sense—but you are making provision to enable them to live lives of that kind. We are asked to provide these sums of money without exacting any duties of any kind, and if hon. Members opposite deny that statement I shall be indebted to them if they will point out what the duties are which are attached to the receipt of these sums. Whatever these duties may be, or for whatever reason we are asked to grant these endowments, the daughter will be called upon to perform these duties or comply with these reasons equally with the sons. The Chancellor of the Exchequer is a strong believer in woman suffrage, and he practically gave an undertaking that he would assist in getting legislation passed to equalise women with men in respect of legislative power. If that be so, I ask him how he defends this differentiation between the younger sons of the King and the whole of the daughters. In order to get an explanation I beg leave to delete the word "ten" ["an annual sum of £10,000 in respect of each son"] and to insert instead thereof the word "six."
§ Mr. LLOYD GEORGE
I think there is a very sufficient reason in the practice of every kind of society for making a distinction in respect of the allowances given to the sons as against those given to the daughters. In the case of the sons of the Sovereign more public service is expected from them, and if they render more public service it is right that there should be larger allowances. So far from being given to enable them to live lives of idleness and luxury, this amount is given in order to equip the recipients with the means to enable them to render that service, and in their sphere I have no doubt that, at all events, they will discharge their obligations. More is expected from the sons of Royalty in this respect, and therefore if the State expects more at their hands it is proper that more ample provision should be made for them. When you come to the case of marriage I should say that there is great reason for making a more substantial allowance to a son than to a daughter. A daughter would naturally expect the larger contribution to come from the husband to maintain the household. In the case of a son the maintenance of the household will fall upon him. There are, therefore, important reasons why there should be differentiation in the allowances. I trust the hon. Gentleman will regard that explanation as satisfactory.
§ Mr. KEIR HARDIE
I do not regard the explanation as satisfactory, but as it is probably the only one we will get I ask leave to withdraw the Amendment.
§ Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.
§ Clause added to the Bill.