38.12The House may give a select committee authority to extend its inquiries beyond the limits laid down in the order of reference by means of an instruction or by resolving to refer a matter to the committee.1 Such an instruction may be either mandatory,2 or permissive.3 Instructions may also restrict the scope of a committee's inquiry or limit its powers. The same result has been achieved by an amendment made to the order of reference on a subsequent day.4 Where an instruction is proposed to be given to a committee on its appointment, it may be moved immediately after the committee has been appointed; but it is more convenient to move it after the members have been nominated, the quorum has been fixed, and the committee given power to send for persons, papers and records.


  1. 1. CJ (1966–67) 420; CJ (2005–06) 143 (Committee on the Crossrail Bill to report on matters relating to the environmental impact of the railway scheme provided for in the bill); CJ (2010–12) 643–44.
  2. 2. For example, CJ (1836) 215; ibid (1961–62) 106; ibid (1994–95) 21, 93, 470.
  3. 3. For example, CJ (1880) 48; ibid (1884) 388; ibid (1902) 119.
  4. 4. CJ (1945–46) 72, 263; ibid (1947–48) 95.