Regulatory Reform Bill [Lords]

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Mr. Lansley: I echo the Minister's thanks to you, Mr. Cook, for the good-humoured fashion in which you have presided over our proceedings. Our debates have been good-humoured and constructive. The flash of steel at the beginning probably helped in that context.

As the Minister said, not much divides us. The point of principle that was raised on Second Reading, which we brought briefly into the Committee's proceedings, continues to divide us. However, in the context of the principle to which the House agreed on Second Reading, we tried as best we could to be constructive in trying to improve the Bill. I do not share the Minister's view that the Bill is perfect. We have illustrated that one could ask many questions and make many judgments that led one to arrive at a different conclusion. We may come to those on Report.

We have had a constructive, positive and interesting debate, and I hope that it will be recognised as such outside the House. All members of the Committee can thank you for that, Mr. Cook, as well as congratulating ourselves a little on the speed with which we have concluded our proceedings.

Mr. Cotter: I, too, thank you, Mr. Cook, for your excellent and outstanding chairmanship, under which the Committee proceeded constructively. I do not say that on the basis of your potential chairmanship of future Committees—it is genuinely meant.

I thank the Clerk's Department and the other officials for all the work that they have put in, which we appreciate.

The Chairman: I simply register my gratitude for the co-operation displayed by all members of the Committee. I hope that there is no validity in the view expressed by one of our number, who described some of our exchanges in the manner in which people from Spain describe their national sport: un punto aqu—, un punto alla, y en medio muchasimo toro—which, as we all know, means a point here, a point there, and in between an awful lot of bull.

Question put and agreed to.

Bill, as amended, to be reported.

        Committee rose at twenty-seven minutes to Twelve o'clock.

The following Members attended the Committee:
Cook, Mr. Frank (Chairman)
Brinton, Mrs.
Bruce, Mr. Ian
Cotter, Mr.
Curtis-Thomas, Mrs.
Gray, Mr.
Lansley, Mr.
Laxton Mr.
Leslie, Mr.
Page, Mr.
Rooney, Mr.
Stewart, Mr. Ian
Stringer, Mr.
Sutcliffe, Mr.
Twigg, Mr. Derek
White, Mr.

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