HC Deb 25 February 1947 vol 433 cc1887-8
69. Mr. Peter Freeman

asked the Financial Secretary to the Treasury how many public libraries take the daily and weekly HANSARD; and how many do not.

Mr. Glenvil Hall

Three hundred and eighty-six take the daily, and 318 the weekly, edition. I am unable to give the number who do not take HANSARD.

Mr. Freeman

Can my right hon. Friend say how those figures compare with the numbers previously issued to public libraries?

Mr. Hall

I have not the exact figures, but I believe that an answer was given in the House a few years ago to the effect that about 454 libraries took HANSARD in one shape or another although, of course, the weekly edition was not then published.

Sir T. Moore

Has the right hon. Gentleman any analysis of the political hostility to the Government as the result of this widespread circulation?

Mr. Glenvil Hall

On the contrary, it would appear that libraries are taking a greater interest than formerly in the proceedings of this House.

Mr. Sydney Silverman

Can my right hon. Friend say how much it would cost to make HANSARD available daily to every library in the country? Would not that be a matter worth considering?

Mr. Glenvil Hall

I cannot give the exact figure, but, obviously, it would mean a loss, depending on the number of libraries which actually took HANSARD. We are not sure how many library authorities there are, but I believe they number 600 to 700. There is, of course, a loss on the daily issue.