HC Deb 05 June 1805 vol 5 cc169-70

Mr. Creevey presented a petition from certain freeholders of the county of Middlesex in the interest of sir Francis Burdett, praying that they may be allowed to defend the seat of the hon. baronet, &c. The petition was then read, setting forth, "that the petitioners are freeholders of the county of Middlesex, and claim to have had a right to vote at the last election of a knight of the shire for the said county; and they are informed, that a petition, signed by G. B. Mainwaring, esq. therein describing himself a candidate at the said election, and others, has been presented to the house, complaining, among other things, of the election and return of sir Francis Burdett, baronet, to serve in parliament for the said county; and that the petitioners have observed, by a notice, inserted in the London Gazette on the 7th day of May last, by order of the speaker of the house, that after the presenting of the said petition, the said sir Francis Burdett, then being the sitting member for the said county, did, on the 6th day of May last, under and by virtue of the provisions and enactments contained in the second section of an act of parliament, passed in the 28th year of his present majesty, intituled, "an act for the further regulation of the trials of controverted elections or returns of members to serve in parliament," inform the house, by a declaration in writing, subscribed by him, and delivered in at the table of the house, that it was not his intention to defend his said election or return; and therefore praying, that under and by virtue of the provisions and enactments contained in the said hereinbefore in part recited act, they may be admitted as parties in the room of the said sir Francis Burdett, and be considered as such to all intents and purposes whatever."

Mr. Creevey gave notice that it was his intention to move to-morrow, that the order which stands for Friday, for the appointment of a ballot to try the merits of the Middlesex election, shall be discharged. The hon. member added, that he should move that order to be postponed to a future day, with a view to afford a, fair time to the parties to prepare and exchange lists.

The Speaker stated, in answer to a question which had been put to him, that, conformably to the terms of the act, the petitioners in this case were entitled to all the rights that belonged to the candidate on whose side they came forward.

Mr. H. Thornton wished the hon. member, who had given notice of the motion upon this subject would state the time to which he proposed to postpone the order that stood for Friday, as he apprehended it would be found to be the opinion of the house that the petitioners were not entitled to the exchange of lists.—Ordered, that the said petitioners be admitted parties in the room of the said sir Francis Burdett, bart. according to the prayer of the said petition.

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