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Lord Redesdale: Before the Minister sits down, she asked a perhaps rhetorical question about whether London should be exempt or the rest of the country. Although the debate has centred around the difference between London, being a metropolitan area, and rural communities, especially Wales, it is only London and not the rest of the country, rural or urban, that falls within this category. So it is only the position of London that is at issue.

Baroness Buscombe: I am grateful to the Minister, as are all noble Lords, for the concession that she will reconsider whether or not places of worship and religious establishments should be exempted. I wrote down three words while noble Lords were speaking to this issue—"heritage", "cultural" and "community". Next to those words I wrote, "It is not worth it". Is this really what the Department for Culture, Media and Sport really intends? I think not.

A number of important points have been made. The right reverend Prelate the Bishop of Peterborough said that there is no evidence of abuse of present legislation. The noble Lord, Lord Ahmed, said that the Bill is intended to reduce crime and disorder and encourage tourism, and that that is exactly what places of worship and schools are doing already across the country. As my noble friend Lady Perry of Southwark added, they are building relationships in the community.

We have had a full debate. We all believe passionately that religious establishments should be exempted. We on these Benches also believe that the position of educational establishments should be reconsidered and that they should form part of the concession to which the Minister has kindly agreed for the many reasons given by noble Lords.

The noble Lord, Lord Williamson of Horton, asked what are the reasons for including schools and places of worship. I return to the point that I made—perhaps not forcibly enough—in relation to previous amendments: that the Government expressly support the evidence-based approach to drafting legislation.

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May we please now have the evidence, particularly in relation to schools? We cannot agree with the Minister that the Bill means no change for schools.

I again thank the Minister for her concession. I am glad that the Government will reconsider the amendments. Given that several noble Lords said that they prefer the amendment of the right reverend Prelate the Bishop of London, I have drafted a different amendment should we need to bring it forward on Report. On that basis, I beg leave to withdraw the amendment.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.

Lord Phillips of Sudbury: Does the Minister wish me to proceed with the next amendment three minutes before the lunch break?

Lord McIntosh of Haringey: Yes.

Lord Phillips of Sudbury: It will cut what I have to say into two parts.

The Deputy Chairman of Committees (Viscount Allenby of Megiddo): First course and second course.

Lord Phillips of Sudbury moved Amendment No. 6:

    Page 108, line 19, at end insert—

"other than in circumstances where the whole proceeds of the entertainment, after deduction of expenses thereof, and the relevant expenses of any exempt lottery under the provisions hereof, are applied for purposes other than private gain"

The noble Lord said: The disadvantage with the previous set of amendments is that they cover only a very small part of the concern mentioned. The crucial point—which, by now, the Committee may fully comprehend but I am not sure that the Government Front Bench do—is that even if you have a case where there is no consideration made for an event with a view to profit, you will still be caught under paragraph (a). So all the ecclesiastical occasions referred to by the right reverend Prelate the Bishop of London would still be caught under paragraph (a).

Three possibilities will sweep up entertainments and catch them within the tentacles of the Bill. The first—and much the most dangerous—is any event to which, to any extent, members of the public or a section of the public are admitted. Even if the right reverend Prelate's amendment had been carried, that would still catch all the ecclesiastical events to which he referred.

More important, it is clear from what has been said that the Committee demands that the whole of the voluntary sector—the little clubs, organisations and charities that fortunately proliferate in this kingdom—is not caught up in a new, complicated and expensive regime.

At Second Reading I referred to the fete held for my local church, St Gregory's, in my garden. I ventured to suggest that under the Bill it would be caught in four ways. I received an astonished look and a shaking of the head from the noble Lord, Lord McIntosh. I have

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gone back to the Bill and I must tell him that each of the four circumstances I mentioned are caught by the Bill.

First, we have a puppet show. That is caught because it is the performance of a play. Secondly, we have a barrel-organ. That is caught because it is the performance of live music. Thirdly, we have a folk singing group. That is certainly caught, being a performance of live music. Lastly, we always have a small group of country dancers. That is caught as a performance of dance. As if that were not enough, we have a raffle—who does not?—and some tickets are sold beyond the gates of the fete because that is where we get money from the non-believers. That is caught under Clause 172, dealing with the raffle and tombola exemption, for the reason that a bottle of whisky is always given as one of the prizes—I give it.

If I may say so with respect, what we need to concentrate on is not the Churches, vital and important though they are, but voluntary society as a whole. I venture to suggest that anyone in this Chamber who runs through the voluntary organisations in his or her own community—the Scouts, the Royal British Legion, the choirs, the clubs, the Brownies, the Rotary clubs, and so on—will see that every one of them is caught under one or other of the Bill's many-headed branches.

I venture to suggest that Amendment No. 6 would exempt all those voluntary and charitable organisations that hold these types of events, not for profit but to increase their own resources. I have used the language of Clause 172 dealing with exempt raffles. I am hopeful, therefore, that the amendment will be acceptable, at least in terms of its drafting. However, as I believe other Members of the Committee will agree, this is an extremely dense and interlocking Bill into which to insert amendments that do nor reverberate unintentionally in other parts.

I want to emphasise a point made by the right reverend Prelate the Bishop of Peterborough and other speakers. There is no abuse of which I am aware in relation to the status quo—indeed, quite the contrary. Given that the Government are repeatedly on record as supporting the voluntary sector and wanting to do everything possible to aid and abet its endeavours, it is astonishing that this part of the Bill has been included.

I want to refer to an aspect of paragraph 1(2)(a) of Schedule 1. Members of the Committee may have attended a memorial service recently. Such services are often advertised in communities so that anyone can attend. If, after the service, people are invited back to a place where there is refreshment, that occasion will be caught by the Bill if any music is provided—the noble Lord, Lord McIntosh, shakes his head, but it is a fact—whether or not for consideration.

To take an extreme case, if at the funeral of a well-known Welsh chorister a group of his or her friends at the reception afterwards broke into song, they would inadvertently have consigned the event to a breach of these wretched regulations. It would be an occasion to

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which the public were invited. There would be a performance of live music. And, hey presto, they would be sunk.

I believe that Schedule 1 needs sinking. Short of that, I commend Amendment No 6, which I believe will come to the aid of the whole scope of voluntary and charity organisations. I beg to move.

Lord McIntosh of Haringey: I am sorry to say that although I enjoyed the noble Lord's speech it does not bear much relation to the amendment or to the way in which it would affect the Bill. Paragraph 1(2) of the schedule provides under heading (a) that the condition is that the entertainment or entertainment facilities are provided,

    "for members of the public or a section of the public";

under (b) that it is,

    "exclusively for members of a club . . . or . . . their guests";

and under (c) that it is entertainment or entertainment facilities,

    "in any case not falling within paragraph (a) or (b), for consideration and with a view to profit".

Clearly, the fete referred to by the noble Lord, Lord Phillips, does not fall under (c). It falls under (a) because it is open to the public. So amendments to (c) are irrelevant to his village fete.

Lord Phillips of Sudbury: I am sorry, but the Minister misunderstands my amendment. It applies to (a), (b) and (c).

Lord McIntosh of Haringey: It does not say so. It comes at the end of line 19 rather than as an additional provision. If I have misunderstood, I am sorry, but if it is meant to apply to (a), (b) and (c), it should have been in a separate sub-paragraph.

Lord Phillips of Sudbury: I acted on the advice of those who purport to know, and this will apply to all three headings.

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