THE Select Committee of the House of Commons appointed to consider the question of Capital Punish- ment held its first public session on Wednesday, January 29th. In view of the public interest created by this enquiry, the Spectator has decided to offer • three prizes of ten guineas, five guineas, and three guineas respectively for the best three Essays • submitted on The Problem of the Death Penalty in England To-day. Entries should be sent to THE COMPETITION EDITOR, The Spectator, 99 Gower Street, London, W.C. 2, and marked ." Capital Punishment " in the top left- hand corner.
The Editor is glad to announce that Sir John Withers, M.P., and Mr. Laurence Housman have kindly consented to act with him as judges. It is desired that the Essays submitted should be in the nature of a critical study of the subject, and they will be judged according to merit irrespective of whether • their writers approve or disapprove of Capital Punish- ment. Essays, which should in no case exceed 2,000 words, should be on one side of the paper only, and if possible be typed. Essays should be submitted not later than March 81st, 1980, and the Editor reserves publication rights of all Essays submitted.