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Friday, 3 December 1965

Sir Wilfrid Kent Hughes (CHISHOLM, VICTORIA) . - Mr. Speaker, I want to make one small request. That is that this Committee, or whoever is going to supervise it, should pay some attention to acoustics and not make the ghastly mistake that has been made in the new wing built on to the present building. Honorable members do not need to have a secret microphone built into the wall because they can hear the conversations and interviews their fellow members are conducting two rooms away. We are practically living in one big public dormitory up there where everybody can hear everybody else's conversations.

Sir ROBERTMENZIES (KooyongPrime Minister). - by leave - Mr. Speaker, if I may say so, I heartily agree with what has been said by the honorable member for Chisholm (Sir Wilfrid Kent Hughes). I have a passionate interest in this acoustics problem though, in spite of my scientific friends, I do not think acoustics has become a quite exact science yet. The fact that this is a temporary building produces the most astonishing results. I am completely familiar with the voices of the " Hansard " writers dictating from their notes to typists below my room. I do not mean to say that I follow them with great interest, but I am familiar with this phenomenon now and then. Of course, if anybody makes some small repair in the building three or four rooms away from me one has to send out a message saying: " Shut up that row or there will be trouble. I am in the middle of a conference." I could not agree more with the honorable member for Chisholm. This is one of the most important matters for consideration.

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