HC Deb 04 February 1824 vol 10 c86
Mr. Littleton

said, that he was requested by his hon. friend, the member for Stafford (Mr. Chetwynd), to move for certain papers which were intended to show what had been the operation of the Vagrant act, which had been passed last session. That act had been the object of much clamour, which arose from the said act having been misunderstood. By obtaining the passing of that act, his hon. friend had saved the counties of England and Wales the sum of 100,000l. annually, which had been heretofore expended in passing vagrants from one part of the country to another. To his hon. friend also belonged the credit of having consolidated about fifty acts relative to vagrancy into one act. When the subject should be discussed, he believed it would be found that the clamour to which he had alluded had been excited, not so much by the law, as by the indiscretion of some magistrates who had administered it. He then moved for a return of the number of persons committed under the vagrant laws to the respective prisons in England and Wales, specifying the particular act of vagrancy for which each person was committed, from the 1st Jan. 1820, to the 1st Jan. 1824 likewise for a return of the sums of money paid by the treasurers of counties in England and Wales, for the passing of vagrants, from the 1st Jan. 1820, to the 1st Jan. 1824;.—Ordered.