I beg to ask the Vice President of the Committee of Council on Education whether he is aware that the Charity Commission has propounded a scheme for the parish charities of St. Mary the Virgin, Oxford, in which the trustees are to be three of them ex officio, three of them co-optive, and five (being a minority) representative; whether he is aware that 200 years ago these charities were under the control of the Vestry, which was then elected by each of the ratepayers having one vote and no more; if so, whether he will suggest to the Commission to withdraw the co-optive element from the scheme: and, as to Nixon's Charity at Oxford (an educational one), whether he will suggest to the Commission that, in framing the new scheme now before them, they should give power to the trustees to lot their land, if they see fit, or parts of it, in allotments?
The Commissioners, in the result of representations made to them, have already modified the Draft Scheme for these charities by the omission of the Churchwardens from the proposed Governing Body, thus leaving the trustees to be elected by the ratepayers in a majority. In the case of one only of the charities, but that the largest, the income was, in the reign of James I., directed to be applied by the Churchwardens, with the consent of the major part of the householders parishioners of the parish. The other charities have been administered by the Vicar and parish officers or some of them, or by individual trustees. In these circumstances, the Commissioners do not contemplate any further alteration of the Governing Body. The scheme for Nixon's Charity at Oxford is no longer before the Commissioners, having been submitted to the Education Department on the 19th of March last.