§ Mr. Wellbeloved
asked the Lord President of the Council whether he will make a statement about the opening of the Strangers' Gallery during morning sittings.
§ Mr. Crossman
Yes. In the light of experience of morning sittings, the Services Committee have reviewed the question of the admission of strangers to the Galleries, and on the advice of the 263W Serjeant at Arms they have recommended to Mr. Speaker that there should be a change in the present organisation.
The Committee recommend the opening of the Strangers' Gallery instead of the Special Galleries, which will result in about 100 extra seats for the public.
Advance booking arrangements for Members will be exactly the same as at present in force for morning sittings, except that Strangers' Gallery Orders will be issued instead of Orders for the Special Galleries.
The Serjeant at Arms in the Chair will also have a limited number of Strangers' Gallery Orders for issue to Members during the actual sitting.
This arrangement will mean a slight reduction in the Letter Board service to Members.
Mr. Speaker has accepted these recommendations and the new organisation will come into force on Monday next, 12th June.