James Sunderland MP, co-sponsor of the Ten Minute Rule Bill, makes a Point of Order following the presentation of the Bill in the House of Commons.
On a point of order, Mr Deputy Speaker. May I thank my great friend, my hon. Friend the Member for Stoke-on-Trent North (Jonathan Gullis), for his kind words and his outstanding speech? I was very humbled to hear it.
While preparing to submit this ten-minute rule Bill, we became aware of a perceived anomaly in parliamentary procedure. Given that such Bills require a minimum of 12 signatures, it seems odd that only one Member is permitted to present one to the House. As a member of the Procedure Committee, might I place on the record my aspiration for a review of parliamentary procedure whereby co-sponsors of ten-minute rule Bills could be allocated a discrete share of parliamentary time?
May I also record my thanks to all who have supported us through this undertaking, and in particular to the Conservative Friends of the Armed Forces?
I thank the hon. Member for that point of order, and for giving me forward notice of it. I have been a Member of Parliament for 28 and a bit years—[Interruption.] I know; I thank the hon. Member for St Helens South and Whiston (Ms Rimmer) for that reaction. Some procedures seem to go back centuries, and others 10 weeks. I hope that I can give the hon. Gentleman some hope, at least, that when it is discussed by the Procedure Committee, what he desires can be analysed and, if it is the will of the House, those procedures can be changed.