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Baroness Mallalieu moved Amendments Nos. 50 and 51:

"(c) a person engages or participates in a hare coursing event."
Page 4, line 28, at end insert—
"( ) For the purposes of this Act an application to the registrar shall be treated as finally determined when—
(a) the registrar has determined the application (or it has been withdrawn or abandoned), and
(b) an appeal to the Tribunal has been determined by the Tribunal (or withdrawn or abandoned) or can no longer be brought (ignoring the possibility of an appeal out of time with permission).
( ) In this Act a reference to a party to proceedings before the registrar or the Tribunal includes a reference to a person who makes representations to the registrar or Tribunal about the proceedings."

On Question, amendments agreed to.

Clause 11, as amended, agreed to.

Clauses 12 and 13 agreed to.

Clause 14 [Subordinate legislation]:

Baroness Mallalieu moved Amendment No. 52:

( ) An order of the Secretary of State under this Act may not be made unless a draft has been laid before and approved by resolution of each House of Parliament.
( ) Regulations and rules under this Act shall be subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament.
( ) An order, regulations or rules made by the Secretary of State or the Lord Chancellor under this Act—"

The noble Baroness said: The amendment deals with subordinate legislation under the Bill. Subsection (2) of the amendment provides that an order made by the Secretary of State under the Bill cannot be made unless a draft of the order has been laid before and approved by resolution of each House of Parliament. Subsection (3) provides that regulations and rules made under the Bill are subject to annulment following the resolution of either House of Parliament. The wording in the amendment is precisely that of the Government's original Bill introduced in December 2002.

On Question, amendment agreed to.

[Amendment No. 52A not moved.]

Clause 14, as amended, agreed to.

Baroness Mallalieu moved Amendment No. 53:

(1) Any expenditure incurred by a Minister of the Crown in connection with this Act shall be paid out of money provided by Parliament.
(2) Money received by the registrar by way of fees shall be paid into the Consolidated Fund."

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On Question, amendment agreed to.

Clause 15 [Commencement]:

[Amendments Nos. 54 to 57A not moved.]

Clause 15 agreed to.

[Amendment No. 58 not moved.]

Clause 16 agreed to.

Clause 17 [Extent]:

[Amendment No. 59 not moved.]

Lord Laird moved Amendment No. 59A:

The noble Lord said: I ask the Committee's indulgence for a few moments. It is not my intention to take up too much time or to pursue the matter to a Division. However, if this Bill gets through, as it probably will in some shape or form, I am not very pleased with the way it has been changed in the Lords. It will mean that the only part of the United Kingdom that retains tearing animals apart for sport will be Northern Ireland.

Of all the places in the United Kingdom which should not have bloodlust and where bloodlust should not be allowed to foster among our young people, it must be Northern Ireland. The concept of people enjoying themselves at the loss of life of animals, with an idea of sport, is not acceptable anywhere, but it is certainly not acceptable after what we have been through in the past 30 years in Northern Ireland.

What are we going to tell our children and the next generation? How are we going to train people to be different, rather than allowing the concept that blood for the sake of blood is an enjoyable sport? I want to make the point strongly here tonight that I do not accept a situation in which Northern Ireland could be the only part of the United Kingdom that retains ripping animals apart for sport. That to me, as a citizen of Northern Ireland, is not acceptable. I beg to move.

Lord Glentoran: I remind the Committee that the noble Lord who has just spoken purports to be in support of devolution for Northern Ireland and of the Northern Ireland Assembly and is a member of the Ulster Unionist Party. What he has just said runs totally against all that thinking and the Committee cannot possibly take him seriously.

Lord Maginnis of Drumglass: I want to make it clear at the outset that my noble friend does not speak on behalf of the Ulster Unionist Party or claim to do so, and nor, indeed, do I. We both have a free vote on hunting.

I, too, shall speak briefly on this issue. The last occasion on which I spoke on this issue was in another place on 13 March 1998. I managed to fill 12 tightly packed A4 pages. Much good though it may do the Committee to hear the arguments that I brought forward then, I shall not impose that on it this evening. Suffice to say that in an island like Ireland, with Northern Ireland part of the United Kingdom and the
27 Oct 2004 : Column 1377
Republic quite independent, where hunting takes place across the border, so many complexities are involved that we cannot realistically have a ban on hunting in Northern Ireland while it occurs in the Irish Republic. Much though I have done throughout my lifetime to emphasise the importance of the border, I have never managed to get that message across to either foxes or hounds. By that remark I indicate the difficulty there would be in applying a ban on hunting to Northern Ireland.

I have one other point to make. The alternative to hunting foxes is to shoot them, or so we are told. Strict legislation has been passed in Northern Ireland that precludes a lot of people who would need to have shotguns to kill foxes if hunting were banned from having those shotguns. That is yet another reason why on this rare occasion I disagree with my noble friend who has just spoken.

Lord Brooke of Sutton Mandeville: I declare the briefest of interests in that during my time in Northern Ireland as a Minister I used to go out beagling until the Irish Times put on its front page that I was doing so. Given the hazards I faced from hunt saboteurs rather more dangerous than those to whom other hunts are subject I was obliged to desist.

My noble friend Lord Glentoran and the noble Lord, Lord Maginnis of Drumglass, spoke of the overall principle regarding Northern Ireland. In the context of the debate that we have just had on the upland and the fell packs, I should say that what the noble Lord, Lord Laird, said about blood lust did not apply to the beagling in which I took part. I remember few occasions in Northern Ireland that I enjoyed more than what began as a tea party when the beagling was over and elided at about a quarter to five into Irish whiskey, and where "craic" went on throughout the evening. It was a remarkable social occasion and the epitome of rural life in Northern Ireland.

Lord Whitty: I suspect that, as regards the Committee stage of this Bill, we would all have liked to get to the Irish whiskey by a quarter past five.

I have some sympathy with the noble Lord, Lord Laird, as if this Bill passes, in whatever form, Northern Ireland would be the one part of the United Kingdom not covered by the legislation. However, regrettably, the noble Lord, Lord Glentoran, is correct on the devolution position; namely, that it is not a matter that we would normally deal with through primary legislation which applies to England and Wales. The animal welfare legislation that applies there is different from that in Northern Ireland, and the way to extend it would not be by extending the scope of a piece of primary English and Welsh legislation. Therefore, I advise the Committee that it would be difficult to do what the noble Lord proposes, however strongly he feels and however desirable we may or may not consider it to be.

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