§ Mr. Max Madden (Bradford, West)
On a point of order, Mr. Speaker. I thank you and the Clerks for the guidance that I have been given on how I can refer to an announcement made by the Conservative-controlled Bradford council today that, at its full council meeting next Tuesday, it intends to restrict entry by the public to the council chamber. I understand that it intends to issue 118 tickets to members of the public who, in the council's view, are not considered to be trouble makers, and to allow a further 50 members of the public to listen to a broadcast of the council meeting in an adjoining room.
There are 45 items on the council's agenda. The council is seeking the ratification of 9,000 council redundancies, the selling of 15 homes for elderly people and the denial of funding to 25 voluntary organisations. I am sure you understand, Mr. Speaker, that there is a great desire on the part of people in Bradford to——
§ Mr. Speaker
Order. I well understand the hon. Gentleman's concern about this matter, but he must find another, more appropriate method of raising it before the House. It seems to me that it is a matter for the local council, not for the House of Commons. I understand his concern and I hope that he will follow the guidance that I gave him previously.
§ Mr. Pat Wall (Bradford, North)
Further to that point of order, Mr. Speaker. Are we not devaluing the role of this House as the issue has been debated nationally and 906 discussed in the press? The issue of Bradford can apparently be discussed everywhere but in this House. That is a deplorable situation.
§ Mr. Speaker
I must have regard to the rules of our House and we must discuss here matters which are within our rules and within ministerial responsibility. Both the hon. Gentleman and his hon. Friend the Member for Bradford, West (Mr. Madden) must try to find other ways of raising the matter.
§ Mr. Bob Cryer (Bradford, South)
On a point of order, Mr. Speaker. May I ask you briefly whether you will keep an open mind on the question of applications under Standing Order No. 20 regarding the announcement of 9,000 sackings in Bradford by the Tory-controlled council? The situation continues to develop. Fresh announcements of serious cuts are being made. The whole council system is being gerrymandered on the mayor's casting vote, so I ask you to keep an open mind on this serious constitutional issue.
§ Mr. Speaker
I understand the significance of this to hon. Members who represent that important city, but, as the hon. Gentleman will be the first to appreciate, I must have regard to the rules of the House. The hon. Members concerned will have to seek other ways of raising the matter.