HC Deb 24 March 1971 vol 814 cc535-6
45. Rear-Admiral Morgan-Giles

asked the Lord President of the Council approximately how many staff in each of the following categories are employed in the House of Commons at midnight on the occasions when the House is still sitting, namely, doorkeepers, police, engineers, lift attendants, refreshment department attendants, and others.

Mr. Whitelaw

The following staff are employed in the House of Commons at midnight when the House is sitting: Twenty-two doorkeepers, Twenty-six police, Fifteen engineers, Two lift attendants, Twenty-five refreshment department staff and Fifty-seven others, including Clerks, Library Clerks, Serjeants, and HANSARD Reporters.

Rear-Admiral Morgan-Giles

Do not these very large numbers bring two thoughts to mind—first, that we are extremely grateful to our efficient and cheerful staff, as has already been said; and, second, that performances such as the Opposition's unsuccessful stratagem last night serve only to make an absolute nonsense of Parliament?

Mr. Whitelaw

In answer to the first part of the supplementary question, I entirely agree with my hon. and gallant Friend that we are all, wherever we sit in the House, greatly indebted to our staff for the long hours they work for us and for what they do for us.

As to the second part of the question. I have always said quite simply that every hon. Member is entirely responsible for the consequences of his own actions.