HC Deb 01 April 1805 vol 4 cc166-7
The Chancellor of the Exchequer

with a view to the discussion which stood for Thursday next, relative to the Tenth Report of the Commis- sioners of Naval Enquiry, thought it desirable to have the house put in possession of every possible information that might enable it to come to a just decision on this important subject. It was material that the discussion should not be unnecessarily protracted, but it was also to be wished that every assistance should be afforded to the judgment of the house. With this view it was that he proposed to submit a motion to the house for the production of a letter written by lord viscount Melville to the Commissioners of Naval Enquiry on Thursday the 28th of March, in elucidation of some points in his lordship's case, which it would be important to have before the house previous to its final decision on this question. He was not aware of any objection to his motion, but if any should exist, he should content himself in the present instance with a notice for to-morrow. As the printing of this letter would take up some time, and gentlemen would require also time to consider its contents, in order to come to the discussion fully prepared, he submitted whether it would not be desirable to have the notice for Thursday withdrawn, and some early day in the ensuing week fixed instead of it.

Mr. Fox

asked across the table, whether any answer had been returned to this letter?

The Chancellor of the Exchequer

was not aware that any answer had been sent, but was desirous that all the papers relating to the subject should be laid before the house, and printed for the information of gentlemen.

Mr. Grey ,

in the absence of his. hon. friend (Mr. Whitbread), felt it impossible to say whether he would consent to put off his motion to next week. Of this, however, he was certain, that it was the wish of his hon. friend, that opportunities of information should be afforded to the house. He agreed with the right hon. gent. that the discussion of this important question should not be protracted. He thought that by deterring the motion till Friday, sufficient time would be afforded, and suggested the propriety of adding to the right hon. gent's motion, a Copy of any answer or proceeding thereon.

The Chancellor of the Exchequer

thought that Monday would be the earliest day when the house could be prepared for the discussion, if the hon. member (Mr. Francis) who had a motion for that day, would consent to defer it. If it should appear on the production of the letter, that any further proceedings had been taken upon it, they also would be necessary to be laid on the table, Which would require further time.

Mr. Francis

made some objection to a further delay of his motion, which had already been put off to accommodate the other side of the house. But on the suggestion of the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Mr. Francis's motion relative to the present state of India was fixed for Friday next, and Mr. Grey Consented to put off his notice on the part of his hon. friend to Monday, under an understanding however, on all sides, that no further delay should take place, unless something not then foreseen, should occur to render it necessary.

The Chancellor of the Exchequer

then moved "that there be laid before the house a Copy of the Letter of lord viscount Melville, dated the 28th of March, to the Commissioners of Naval Enquiry; and also, a copy of any proceedings had thereon, or of any answer thereto by the Said Commissioners of Naval Enquiry."—Agreed to.

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