HC Deb 09 May 1811 vol 19 cc1150-1
Mr. Wellesky Pole

obtained leave to bring in a Bill for making provision for the wives and families of Serjeants, corporals, drummers, and privates, in the Irish militia. He noticed that h is object in bringing forward this Bill was to alter the existing law so as to impose a check and guard upon the frauds committed under it to the amount of 74,000l. per annum. Another object was to confine the right of relief only to the families of militiamen who had been balloted, and not to volunteers, though it was not intended to take the benefit from, the wives and children of such volunteer" as now enjoyed it. On the whole it was hoped that an improvement would be made by assimilating the Irish to the English militia; by correcting frauds, and saving an expence to the country. It was not his intention to hurry the Bill through, the House, but to have it read a first time, and printed.

Sir J. Newport

agreed that the object in view was very desirable, and gave it his approbation. He, however, repeated his former suggestions of the injurious tendency of drawing distinctions between the militia and regulars, and granting to the former benefits not enjoyed by the latter who were so gloriously supporting the cause of their country in the field. This would operate against filling up the regiments of the line from the militia; and the necessity of some provision was peculiar to Ireland, where there were no regular establishments as in this country. He again expressed his approbation of the plan, and hoped the parties would be enabled to obtain the relief granted to them, with as little trouble as possible from the distance of the collectors.

Mr. W. Pole

observed, that this Bill did in a great measure, assimilate the militia to the regulars, as in neither were the wives and families of volunteers entitled to the provision. He thanked the hon. bart. for his suggestions, and would be happy to have his further opinions on the Bill in the course of its progress. He would take care that the relief should be attainable with the least possible trouble.