HC Deb 01 March 1831 vol 2 c1060

An hon. Member rose to ask the Speaker a question, which was, whether a Member who had put up his name upon the back of a particular seat, was absolutely entitled to that seat, or whether it might be occupied by any Member who came in and found the seat vacant?

The Speaker

said: in answer to the question of the hon. Member, I can only state, that it has always been the custom, by courtesy, to allow Members who were present when prayers were said, to retain the seats they had then occupied until they were displaced by a division. The House will pardon me taking advantage of the opportunity to make one remark upon a most unusual occurrence. When I came down to the House this afternoon it was remarkably full, but after prayers had been said, and before the ballots were made, the papers on the backs of the seats were more numerous than the Members in them.

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