HC Deb 09 February 1804 vol 1 cc468-9
Mr. Thomas Grenville

rose, for the purpose of offering to the House a motion, which, if he were to adhere to the usual forms of proceeding in such cases, it would be proper to submit, after a previous notice. It did not, however, appear to him necessary to conform, in the present instance, to the established usage of Parliament; and he was confident the House would concur with him in that opinion, when put in possession of the words of his motion. His object in making it was, to have certain papers aid upon their table to which members could regularly refer on all occasions, as official documents. The papers he alluded to were, Copies of the correspondence between his Majesty's Secretaries of Stale by letters called circular, and the Lords Lieutenants of the different counties of Great-Britain. Every one of these letters bad been primed and circulated, by order of his Majesty's government, for which reason, he could neither conceive any objection that could possibly be made to laying them on the table, nor did he suppose a notice of his motion necessary. The papers contained all the directions of his Majesty's ministers, for the regulation and establishment of the volunteer corps, as well as for the better training and disciplining the people under the general defence act, and would be found useful documents to which to refer in discussions concerning these subjects. He believed he; was correct in staling, that all these letters bad been printed. The House would, therefore, see, that if he departed in this instance from the usual practice, it was on an occasion which bore no resemblance to the ordinary cases in which motions are made for the production of papers. If he should underhand from such of his Majesty's ministers as were in the House, that his motion would not be resisted, it would not be necessary for him to occupy more of the time of the House than barely to move "That there be laid before the House, Copies of all the circular letters, written since the commencement of the present war, by any of his Majesty's Secretaries of State to the Lords Lieutenants of the different counties in Great-Britain, respecting the establishment and regulation of volunteer corps, and respecting oilier measures for the defence of the country, and for the better execution of the acts of the last session of Parliament,"—Ordered.