HC Deb 05 March 1832 vol 10 cc1117-56

On the Motion of Lord John Russell, the House went into Committee upon the Reform of Parliament (England) Bill.

On the Chairman proceeding to read the names in schedule D,

Mr. Trevor

rose to submit a Motion to the Committee respecting the town of Stockton-on-Tees, and, as he proposed to divide the House upon it, he requested the attention of hon. Members to the subject. Stockton-on-Tees was a town which, for a series of years, had been rapidly advancing, not in population alone, but in commercial and shipping importance. Perhaps the shortest way to state the claim of that town to Representation would be to read an extract from a petition presented to the House from its inhabitants, detailing not only the amount of its population and shipping, but the amount which it returned to the revenue. In the year 1811, the return of Customs from Stockton-on-Tees was 4,000l.; in 1830, it was 44,000l.; and in 1831, the year in which it was to be recollected the duty on seaborne coals was repealed, 44,000l. Thus there was an increase in the Customs between the years 1811 and 1831 of 40,000l. In 1830 the return of inward-bound vessels was 1,262; of outward-bound, 361. In 1831, the return of inward-bound was 2,104, and outward, 454, shewing a considerable increase. The population of the town of Stockton-on-Tees alone, independently of the adjoining townships, which, in the event of its insertion in the schedule, would, of course, be added to the town, was 7,566 souls. If the two adjoining townships, one of which contained 1,406, and the other 401 inhabitants, were annexed to it, there would be a population of nearly 9,000 persons, offering a sufficiently ample constituency. There were in the town 600 10l. houses, and 300 40s. tenements. Such were the statements of the petition, which he conceived were quite sufficient to entitle the town to Representation. If he (Mr. Trevor) correctly understood the principle upon which the Reform measure was introduced, it was to give Representation to considerable places whose population and commercial interests had not been hitherto adequately represented. If such was the principle, he could not understand why Stockton-on-Tees was omitted. Cheltenham and Brighton were to have Members, but he would be glad to know what interests either of those places possessed to entitle it to Representation in preference to Stockton on-Tees. He might be told that the county of Durham had already an ample number of Members granted by the Bill. He admitted such was the case. Nay, he would go further, and say that the county of Durham had a more than ample number of Representatives. What he complained of was, that those Representatives were badly allotted. Out of the ten Members that Durham was to receive, eight would be returned by the northern division of that county, while the southern division, containing the important towns of Stockton-on-Tees and Darlington, would have but two Representatives. He would suggest the transferring of the Representation which was allotted to Gateshead to Stockton-on-Tees. If the two places were compared, no reason could be found for preferring Gateshead; and he could not avoid hoping that Ministers would consent to the change. The hon. Member concluded by moving, that Stockton-on-Tees be inserted in schedule D.

Lord John Russell

opposed the Motion. He would not deny that Stockton-on-Tees was a considerable place, but he contended, that there were a great many other towns much better entitled to Representation, even if it was the intention of the framers of the measure to make any alteration in the Bill as it stood, which it certainly was not. He must, however, state to the House that Doncaster contained a larger population than Stockton-on-Tees, and paid a considerably larger sum in assessed taxes. The hon. Gentleman had complained that the county of Durham was over represented, and yet he proposed to give another Representative to a town in that county. True, he had proposed, as an alternative that Gateshead should not be represented, in order to give its Member to Stockton-on-Tees; or, in other words, he had asked the Committee, admitting population as an element of the principle on which the measure was founded, to deprive Gateshead, containing a population of 15,000 souls, of its Representation, in order that it might be bestowed on Stockton-on-Tees, containing but 7,000 or 8,000 individuals.

Sir Charles Wetherell

thought, that his hon. friend had made out a most satisfactory case on behalf of Stockton-on-Tees. He was at a loss to conceive what superior right the toy, lemonade, and jelly shops of Brighton had to Representation in comparison with the commercial and shipping interests of Stockton-on-Tees. He thought the assessed taxes formed a bad element for Representation, for it was impossible to say in what manner they might be altered. For ought he or the House knew, the tax on windows might be repealed in the next Budget which the Chancellor of the Exchequer would bring forward—if, indeed, he intended to bring forward any Budget—and there would be an end to one of the elements of the principle on which the measure was founded. Such things as hairpowder formed a very slight basis for a measure of such importance as that of Parliamentary Representation. Upon every consideration he was resolved to vote in favour of the Motion.

Lord Althorp

was surprised to hear the hon. and learned Gentleman deprecate the assuming of hair-powder as an element of the Bill, when he recollected the constant use of that article by the members of the profession to which he belonged.

Sir Charles Wetherell

begged pardon for interrupting the noble Lord; he was in the habit of wearing a patent wig.

Lord Althorp

certainly recollected to have seen the marks of hair-powder on the hon. Gentleman's habiliments. With respect to the Motion before the House, he would only observe, that even, supposing it was deemed possible or expedient to give another Member to schedule D, there would be a question whether Stockton-on-Tees ought to be the place selected for that purpose, for Loughborough, Darlington, and Croydon, possessed a population much larger in amount than Stockton-on-Tees. For this reason he would oppose the Motion.

Mr. Croker

was of opinion that the southern district of the county of Durham was neglected in the proposed measure of Reform, not only with regard to Stockton-on-Tees, but in other cases. As to the Motion of the hon. Gentleman, he would content himself by observing, that if no others of the towns of Durham were to be left out in order to give Stockton-on-Tees a Representative, he could not vote for the measure, as he considered Durham had already more than its due proportion of Members. He thought it would have been better to have given a Representative to Stockton-on-Tees, rather than to South Shields. While they were considering this part of the schedule, he desired to make one observation respecting Toxteth Park, near Liverpool. Some time ago it had been urged that Toxteth Park stood in the same relation to Liverpool, that Salford did to Manchester. In reply, it was stated that Salford had a separate jurisdiction from Manchester, which was not the case with Toxteth Park; and, at the same time, it was further urged against giving Toxteth Park a Representative, and in favour of doing so for Salford, that the inhabitants of the former town expressed no desire to be represented, while Salford had expressed a strong wish on the subject. Both those arguments he was able to say, were unfounded. In the first place, Toxteth Park was under a distinct jurisdiction from Liverpool; and, in the second place, a memorial had long since been presented to Government by the inhabitants of that place, praying Representation.

Mr. Trevor

said, that the southern division of the county of Durham had not got a fair share in the Representation, and that was his chief reason for pressing the claim of Stockton-on-Tees. He considered Ministers had, in many instances, made a most unfortunate selection of places on which to bestow the franchise. Even admitting that the towns the noble Lord had enumerated, were superior in population to Stockton-on-Tees, still the latter deserved more consideration from the great interest connected with it. There could be no comparison between these and the petty interests of the keepers of circulating libraries and venders of oranges and lemonade at Cheltenham and Brighton.

Mr. Lowther,

as resident in the neighbourhood of Stockton, begged to bear his testimony to the respectability of the parties who had signed the petition presented by the member for the city of Durham, and to speak to the trade and importance of that town; but certain rules having been laid down by Government as to the amount of the population necessary for the formation of new constituencies, and the county of Durham having already received more than its due share of Representation under the new Bill, he entreated the hon. Member to consult the feeling of the House, and not to press his Motion to a division. He had already fully discharged his duty towards those who had intrusted him with their petition.

Sir Charles Wetherell

also recommended his hon. friend not to divide.

Motion negatived.

Ashton-under-line, and Bury (Lancashire), were included in schedule D.

On the question that Chatham (Kent) stand part of the schedule,

Mr. Croker

was of opinion, that the parish of Gillingham should be included in the borough of Chatham. The latter place had a population of about 19,000; and the former about 14,000, making a total of 33,000, and, considering the importance of the interests connected with these places, Chatham ought to have had two Members allotted to it.

Lord John Russell

thought the observations of the right hon. Gentleman would come in more conveniently when the Boundary Bill was under discussion. He understood that Gillingham was a mile from Chatham.

Mr. Croker

could assure the noble Lord that Gillingham was not above a furlong from Chatham; but, even if it had been a mile, that could be no objection, for they had allowed places much further apart to be connected in the return of Members, such as Sedgely with Wolverhampton; Tynemouth and North Shields; Stoke-upon-Trent and the places joined with it. He did not find fault with these places being joined, but he did complain of the want of method or principle by which, according to caprice apparently, some distant places were united, and other contiguous places disjoined.

Lord John Russell

said, that the hon. Gentleman ought to know that they had resorted to population chiefly as the rule of enfranchisement, and had taken the criterion of assessed taxes chiefly for the purpose of disfranchisement, and that the boundaries of places had been selected from local knowledge and other circumstances.

Mr. Croker

said, this was the first time he had heard this distinctly avowed, and an extraordinary rule it was, they were, it seemed, to take comparative wealth to disfranchise, and comparative population to enfranchise, and both were to be regulated by a boundary drawn to serve particular purposes.

Lord Althorp

said, the assessed taxes could not form a test of the importance of great manufacturing towns.

Mr. Goulburn

said, that upon this principle Dartmouth was unfairly dealt with.

Mr. Croker

complained, that the noble Lord went over the country with his rule and compasses, and threw them into the Thames when he came to the new boroughs.

Sir Charles Wetherell

said, this was the first time he understood that a different rule was to be applied to the new and the old boroughs. It was unfair not to have stated before, the principle of enfranchisement in this schedule. It was a system of caprice, uncertainty, and injustice. The House and the public were treated with great contempt in not having been previously informed of this new element. It was a departure from the principle acted upon in other cases. His Majesty's Government seemed to have gone with Lieutenant Drummond until he got down to Chatham, and then they put stones in his pocket, and sunk him.

The question agreed to.

Mr. Croker

observed, that the Committee had now agreed unanimously to a Resolution which had been rejected last year by a large majority.

The next question was, that Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, stand part of schedule D,

Lord Granville Somerset

said, there were some manufacturing towns more worthy of Representation than Cheltenham. He thought, at least, that the district newly built upon, which was called Pittsfield, should have been included in the borough.

Lord John Russell

understood, the whole of the town was included.

Mr. Estcourt

observed, the most important part of the town of Cheltenham, that in which the baths stood, was not included in the borough.

Captain Berkeley

said, not one-tenth part of the houses in the portion of the town alluded to, were inhabited.

Mr. Croker

said, that was no reason. In Brighton, houses not yet built were included. He thought the Master of the Ceremonies should be the returning officer.

Cheltenham placed in schedule D.

On the question that Dudley, Worcestershire, stand part of schedule D,

Mr. Croker

said, that he had some observations to make with reference to the enfranchisement of Dudley; but it being, in his opinion, more convenient to make them under the head of Staffordshire, he would postpone them until the question of the enfranchisement of Walsall, in that county, came before the House.

Dudley was placed in schedule D.

On the question that Frome, Somersetshire, stand part of schedule D,

Mr. Croker

inquired why the whole parish of Frome had not been included within the limits of the borough.

Lord John Russell

said, that the great extent of the parish was the reason why the whole of it had not been included, it had a circumference of between fifty and sixty miles.

Mr. Croker

asserted, that the case of Frome was inconsistent with the professed principles of the Bill.

Mr. Littleton

said, the constituency of the town could not be extended without injuring the constituency of the county.

Mr. Croker

said, this was the first time he heard that boroughs were to be cut and carved to adapt them to the constituency of the county, He would take an opportunity of mentioning some remarkable instances in which the town Representation was extended to the county.

Motion agreed to.

On the question that Gateshead, Durham, stand part of schedule D,

Colonel Wood

said, he had given notice that he proposed to move an Amendment on this question, which was, to substitute another place, Merthyr Tydvil in the schedule, to the exclusion of Gateshead, which he considered, a place of minor importance. He was sorry there was so thin an attendance of Members, because the parties whose case he was about to represent would think that their interests were not duly considered. It appeared to him that Gateshead had very little claim to representation. But he would first submit to the House the claims of Merthyr Tydvil. The petition which he had presented from that town contained the following particulars and he had every reason to believe the whole of the allegations were substantially correct. The town of Merthyr Tydvil contained a population of 22,083 persons, and had 4,367 houses, and 674 occupants of houses of the annual value of 10l. and upwards; containing within its own limits four of the largest iron works in the British dominions, with no less than thirty-three blast furnaces; it was also situated in the centre of a district in which more than one-third part of the iron made in Great Britain was produced, and in which no less than 100,000 persons resided. With these claims to Representation the inhabitants were unable to understand the principle upon which Merthyr Tydvil was excluded from schedule D, while so many places of inferior relative importance were admitted into it. They stated, that according to the principle adopted by Lieutenant Drummond, Merthyr Tydvil was higher in the scale than Bury, Kidderminster, Whitehaven, Walsall, Kendal, Frome, Gateshead, Ashton-under-Line, South Shields, and Whitby. They likewise stated, that if their claim to a Representative were to be decided by the amount of the population, they would also stand in an equally advantageous situation with respect to the boroughs which he had just named. They said the amount of their population was 22,083, and that the amount of population in those boroughs was in every case much below 20,000. They felt more deeply the injustice of being deprived of a Representative when they contrasted their situation with other places to which Representatives were now for the first time given. In the Staffordshire iron district it was proposed to give to Birmingham two Members, to Wolverhampton two Members, to Dudley, situate only six miles from Wolverhampton, one Member, and to Walsall, also situated about six miles, one Member; so that in a circle of which the radius was thirteen miles, there would be six members returned from places connected with the Staffordshire iron trade, besides the two Members for the county. He might therefore have proposed to have transferred the Members assigned to Walsall from that place to Merthyr Tydvil; but if he had made such a proposition, he should have laid himself open to the accusation that he was making it in that spirit of rivalry which existed between the Staffordshire iron trade and the South Wales iron trade. He had, therefore, determined to select some place, between which and Merthyr Tydvil no rivalry existed; and, in looking for such a place, his attention had been directed to the striking injustice with which his constituents had been treated in comparison with the inhabitants of the coal districts in the north of England. His constituents had, therefore, stated in their petition, that Newcastle now returned two Members,—that the city of Durham returned two Members—that Sunderland was to return two Members—that Gateshead, divided from Newcastle only by the river Tyne, was to return one Member—that Tynemouth, only seven miles distant from Newcastle, was to return one Member—and that South Shields, divided from North Shields by the Tyne, was also to return one Member. There were thus within a circle, drawn with a radius of twelve miles, not less than nine borough Representatives connected with the northern coal trade, in addition to the four Knights of the Shire for Durham and Northumberland respectively. The petitioners complained of this great accumulation of Members in one district, whilst Merthyr Tydvil and its mineral district was left without a Representative. For these reasons he submitted that Gateshead ought to be erased out of this schedule, and that Merthyr Tydvil ought to be inserted in its place. He was perfectly aware that, in schedule E it was proposed that Cowbridge, Merthyr Tydvil, Aberdare, and Llantrissent should have a share with Cardiff in the election of a member; but his constituents deprecated this union, because Cardiff was distant twenty-five miles, Llantrissent nineteen, and Cowbridge thirty miles from Merthyr Tydvil, and had none of them any community of interest with it. They, therefore, humbly but firmly, claimed, through him, that share in the Representation to which their population, important commercial interests, and relative importance, in strict justice and equity entitled them, namely, the privilege of sending one Member to Parliament without being annexed to any other place. He had no wish to deprive Gateshead of the elective franchise, and he would, therefore, point out two modes by which his object could be obtained, without doing that injury to Gateshead. In the instructions addressed to the Boundary Commissioners, he found this passage: "Plans on a large scale will be furnished to you, on which you will direct your surveyors carefully to insert the boundaries of the old borough, and to mark the limits ascribed by you to the town. In some few cases the abrupt termination of the streets will point out the indisputable limit of the town, while in others, straggling and detached houses, extending to a considerable distance, and approaching, perhaps, some adjacent village, may render it difficult to say where the exact limits should be fixed. Under such circumstances it is impossible to lay down any very precise rules for your proceedings. Continuous portions of streets, though forming a town known under a different name, a town or village separated by a river from the borough, but connected by a bridge, with the houses on both sides extending to the river, should be included." If they looked to the plan of Gateshead, this description coincided with its relative locality with Newcastle. According to the present arrangement, the boundary line was made to cross the Tyne; and, after descending to a considerable distance, recrossed it. That was most extraordinary; and he should certainly have thought that the natural line would be, to descend on the right bank, and to include Gateshead in Newcastle, of which place, in fact, it was a mere suburb, as its name implied. But if including these two places was objectionable, there was another mode by which Gateshead could be joined to South Shields. In another part of the instructions he found this paragraph: "The number of boroughs with which places are to be included is small, and they differ from the associated places in Wales, by being either in the immediate vicinity of the old boroughs, such as Penryn, Deal, and Walmer, or in immediate contact with it, like Chatham, Portsea, and Sculcoates. In the latter cases, the new boundary must, of course, be continuous, in the former it need not be so." Gateshead might be brought within this instruction; it would give rise to the additional advantage of forming a distinct boundary for each, as the places were only six miles distant from each other, and might be said to be united, to a certain extent, by a community of interests. He must call the attention of the Committee once more to the state of Merthyr Tydvil. Its inhabitants were a hardy, laborious, and industrious race of people. They were not like manufacturing labourers, confined all day to factories, and spending their nights in political clubs and pothouses. They were a fine gigantic race of people, the absolute Cyclops of the present age; they stood before their blast furnaces for twelve hours at a time, one gang working from six in the morning till six at night, and the other from six at night till six in the morning, taking the night and day work alternately, week by week. Having stated these claims, which, he considered, were ample proof of the relative superiority of the place over the others, with which he had contrasted it, he must beg leave shortly to allude to the unfortunate transactions which had taken place at Merthyr Tydvil last spring; and he trusted that circumstances had since occurred, which would make a favourable impression on the House. The same ex- citement prevailed in this place which was generally felt at that time, and a collision took place between the military and the inhabitants, in which, several of the latter lost their lives. When this became known, delegates from the Political Unions of other places were despatched to Merthyr Tydvil, to form Political Unions there, which they effected under the guise of settling the differences between the masters and operatives, which had been the cause of the unfortunate contest between the population and the military. Some of the masters, however, set their faces against these unions, and their efforts being assisted by the Calvinistic Methodists, a powerful and influential body of dissenters, who strenuously exerted themselves to induce their members to abandon those societies, by their joint efforts they fortunately succeeded in breaking up the whole of these dangerous combinations. The Political Unions at Merthyr Tydvil had accordingly ceased to exist. He, therefore, hoped, that, as the inhabitants of this great manufacturing district had set the example of abandoning these associations, that circumstance would operate in their favour in the minds of the Committee. It was upon these grounds that he felt called upon to move that "Gateshead, Durham, be struck out of schedule D, and, Merthyr Tydvil, Glamorganshire," be inserted in its stead.

Lord Patrick Stuart

said, that though he was a supporter of this Bill generally, yet he must be allowed to dissent from it in this particular, as he could not help thinking that the towns of Cardiff and Merthyr Tydvil had a right to complain that Ministers had shown greater favour to the coal towns in the north of England than they had extended to them. The only ground that had been alleged for this partiality, was, that Merthyr Tydvil was in the principality of Wales, and he, as one of the Welsh Members, could by no means admit the justice of that doctrine. He was prepared to assert, that Wales ought in every respect to be placed on the same footing as England, and, in fact, the new arrangements with respect to the Welsh judicature, had entirely done away with all distinctions between the two. So that the counties of Glamorgan and Monmouth ought to be treated in a precisely similar manner to Norfolk or Cornwall. It might, perhaps, be said, that the system of contributory boroughs had hitherto prevailed in Wales, and that, therefore, there was no hardship in continuing the practice, but there were five out of the twelve which had never been contributory, and, therefore, this argument could not be set up on general grounds; and, even if it were so settled a hundred years since, that was no rule now, for the same argument would apply against all measures of alteration or improvement, and would equally make against the present Bill in all its great and leading principles. On these grounds he would contend, the rule laid down by the Bill ought to be extended to Wales, and he claimed its application to the borough of Cardiff, which he had the honour to represent. Both Cardiff and Merthyr Tydvil were equally averse to being annexed together in the Representative system. They maintained that they were each entitled to a separate Member. His constituents, the inhabitants of Cardiff, were better entitled to return one Member than the inhabitants of Morpeth. Upon the principle of Lieutenant Drummond, Morpeth would stand 4,774 on the list, and Cardiff would stand 5,025, or with the auxiliary places of Cowbridge and Llantrissent, 6,682. Besides, Cardiff, which was the county town of Glamorganshire, was itself a rising town. Ten years ago, the export of coal from Cardiff was only 21,000 tons annually; now it was 93,000 tons. It had sent a Representative to Parliament for the last 300 years, and had never been convicted in all that time of any abuse of the privileges it enjoyed. It would, therefore, be anything but justice to swamp its constituency by that of Merthyr Tydvil. He thought that the town of Merthyr Tydvil was of greater importance than the town of Gateshead. Had schedule B been retained in the present Bill to the same extent as it was in the last Bill—as he could have wished it—each of these places might have returned a Representative to Parliament without difficulty; and, even at present, they were fully entitled to this right. It might be alleged that Glamorganshire was to receive an additional Member, but that was no answer to the claim for Merthyr Tydvil. That county obtained this privilege because it was justly entitled to it on its own account. As he was compelled by the present form of the Bill to choose between Merthyr Tydvil and Gateshead, he should give his vote in favour of Merthyr Tydvil.

Mr. John Hodgson

said, he felt bound to support the claims of Gateshead to a share in the Representation, as superior to those of Merthyr Tydvil, from the circumstances connected with its situation, independent of its own distinct claims. If Gateshead were left without a Representative, the county of Durham would be deprived of its just share in the Representation. One Member to every 25,000 persons was the present average throughout England. Supposing Gateshead to retain a Member, the proportion of Members to the population in the county of Durham would be one to every 26,000; supposing Gateshead to lose it, it would be one in every 28,000. If Merthyr Tydvil had claims to Representation at the expense of some place in schedule D, there was no reason for fixing upon Gateshead. There were four boroughs in that schedule which contained a smaller population and three which paid a less amount of assessed taxes; for these reasons, as well as for the sake of the important commercial interests of Gateshead, he should support the original proposition.

Mr. Keith Douglas

did not consider that Gateshead required a separate Representation, as it had no interest distinct from that of Newcastle, of which it was only a miserable suburb. He should vote, therefore, that Gatseshead be excluded.

Mr. Jephson

thought, that Gateshead and Merthyr Tydvil were each of them entitled to have a Representative. He likewise thought that Merthyr Tydvil and Cardiff ought not to be united. He should vote in favour of Gateshead retaining its place in schedule D; and if any hon. Member should think proper to move that Cardiff and Merthyr Tydvil should each be entitled to return one Member, he would have great pleasure in supporting that motion.

Mr. Rigby Wason

had voted for the addition of one Member to Gateshead, as proposed by the last Bill, but the circumstances under which the present question was brought before them widely differed from those under which a Member was to be bestowed on that place last Session, inasmuch as there were then thirty spare Members for towns which had claims to be represented. He did not think, that Gateshead, which might be efficiently blended in the Representation of Newcastle, was of sufficient importance, in the present circumstances of the case, to warrant Ministers in persisting in giving it an additional Member, to the utter exclusion of the claims which Merthyr Tydvil possessed.

Sir Adolphus Dalrymple

said, that, in his opinion, the claims of Merthyr Tydvil to Representation were far superior to those of Gateshead, which might be equally well represented by the members for Newcastle; for there was not one single commercial interest in Gateshead which did not exist in Newcastle, and which could not be represented by the same Member, in the same way that the interests of South Shields were represented by the member for Sunderland. What was called the town of Gateshead was part of and one of the suburbs of the town of Newcastle, and as such he should be glad to know if the freemen of the latter town, resident in the former, were to be entitled to vote for Members returned for Newcastle? He could not imagine on what principle it was, that the county town of Westmoreland (Appleby) was, by the provisions of this Bill, to give way to Gateshead. There, however, seemed to exist a great anxiety on the part of the Government to break down the old to make way for new interests.

Sir Hedworth Williamson

said, that the town of Gateshead came fully within the principle of this Bill and, as such, he would support the vote for giving to it a separate Member. The interests of Gateshead and Newcastle were essentially different, although the towns were contiguous to each other. The ideas of some hon. Members with respect to the town of Gateshead seemed to have been hastily taken up, from the observations which they had an opportunity of making whilst passing through that place to Edinburgh. If those hon. Members were correctly informed on the subject of that town they would think, as he did, that it eminently deserved a separate Representation. If Gateshead was joined to South Shields, they ought to be included in schedule C. Then why not give them each a separate Member? Gateshead had superior claims to Merthyr Tydvil, and, therefore, should be preferred to it.

Lord Granville Somerset

said, that Ministers were wholly inconsistent in their principles and arguments. They defended one anomaly by another, and laid down principles in an arbitrary manner to which they asked the assent of the House as arbitrarily. Hon. Members were merely told that such boroughs were to be enfranchised, and that others were to be disfranchised; and yet nothing was offered in the shape of argument to support the principle on which this was to be accomplished. He maintained that to no town which possessed 22,000 inhabitants and upwards had one Member been refused with the exception of Merthyr Tydvil. That refusal was defended on account of the place being in Wales. There was no county in England so much favoured as Durham, unless it was Cumberland, and he, therefore, objected to giving a Member to Gateshead. He claimed particularly a Member for Merthyr Tydvil, because Glamorganshire was less represented by one-third than the county of Durham. Even if the hon. and gallant Member's Motion was carried, the Representation of Glamorganshire would by no means equal that of Durham. If a progressive increase in population and wealth formed any claims whereon to establish a demand for Representation, the county of Glamorgan possessed them in even a superior degree to that of Durham. He would prove to the House, if they would favour him by listening to the particulars connected with each, the extreme favour with which certain counties had been treated by this measure. Glamorganshire had a population of 126,000, and four Members—being at the rate of one Member to every 31,653 souls. Durham had a population of 253,000, and ten Members—being at the rate of one Member to every 25,000 souls. Northumberland had a population of 222,000, and ten Members—affording a proportion of 22,000 souls for each Member. Cumberland had a population of 169,000 souls and nine Members—being a proportion of 18,800 for each Member. The advantage which Northumberland, Cumberland, and Durham, had by this arrangement, over Glamorganshire was evident. Glamorganshire had, at present, two Members, and was to have four. Durham had at present four, and was to have ten. The fair increase, as regarded the population of the two counties, would have been, for Glamorganshire to have had assigned to it five Representatives, and Durham nine. Perhaps it might be said, that Monmouthshire, the neighbouring county to Glamorganshire, and having similar interests, was so amply provided with Members as to be able to guard against the power of the northern counties; but both counties together had a less proportionate number of Representatives than Durham or Northumberland. He would now take another view of the subject, and look to the divisions proposed by the Boundary Bill, which appeared to him most extraordinary. The county of Durham was divided into North and South. In the northern division, an agricultural population, amounting to 75,100, was to have two Members; and a town population of 17,100 souls (in which that of Gateshead was included). But putting the two elements of the calculation together, there appeared in this northern division to be one Member for every 21,000 souls, while in Glamorganshire there was only one to every 31,000 souls, being a proportion of one-third less in the latter case than in the former. If five Members were given to Glamorganshire, it would give one Member for every 25,000 souls. It was true, that if the member for Gateshead was taken away, it left the whole county of Durham with one Member for every 28,000 souls; but the northern division alone, in which Gateshead was situated, would be found to have one Member for every 23,000 souls. He thought these details were sufficient to show, that, as far as the principle of population was concerned, Glamorganshire had a fair title to another Member, instead of Gateshead. He would now proceed to some other principles connected with those on which the Bill professed to be founded, and he would again refer to the population returns to prove, that Glamorganshire had increased twenty-four per cent, and Durham only twenty-two per cent in the last ten years; and that, in the ten previous years, it had increased nineteen per cent, whilst Durham had increased only seventeen per cent. Glamorganshire, therefore, appeared to be the more rising county of the two. If Monmouthshire were taken into the account, this comparative view would show greatly to the advantage of the two Welch counties. To pass from this topic to the places in England which were to have two Members each:—Blackburn had a population of 27,000; Bradford, 34,000; Halifax, 30,000; Macclesfield, 30,000; and Oldham, 32,000; whilst Metthyr Tydvil, with a population of 22,000, was to have only the sixth part of a Member; and he had reason to believe, that as the constituency at present stood, if Cardiff and the other boroughs to which it was joined chose to combine together, Merthyr Tydvil would be completely overpowered in elections. When the case of Chatham was under consideration the noble Lord could not think of adding Gillingham to it, because, as he declared, it was actually one mile distant from Chatham; but he had no hesitation in joining Cardiff with Merthyr Tydvil, although they were twenty-five miles apart. Again, why was Deal annexed to Sandwich, although they were seven miles apart, to save its two Members, when neither of those places separately, or both of them together, were equal in importance to Merthyr Tydvil alone? He could not perceive how, even upon the principles of English justice professed by the supporters of the Bill, such inconsistent conduct could be expected to satisfy Wales. He would next refer to a number of towns which were to return each one Member, and had about the same amount of population as, or even less, than Merthyr Tydvil. Gateshead had 15,000 inhabitants; South Shields, 18,000: Tynemouth and North Shields, 25,000; Whitby 10,000. If it were not that the county of York had been rather hardly dealt with in the Reform Bill, the case of Whitby, with 10,000 inhabitants, might be well placed against Merthyr Tydvil, with its 24,000 inhabitants, but he let it pass on that account. Whitehaven had 11,600 inhabitants; Ashton-under-Line, 15,000; Frome, 12,000; and Walsall and neighbourhood, 15,000. Furthermore, the Isle of Wight, which contained 35,000 inhabitants, was to have three Members; while Merthyr Tydvil, with 22,000 inhabitants, was to have but one-sixth part of a Member. Merthyr Tydvil was as superior to all the places he had named in the other principles of Representation which had been assumed as it was in population. In the time of Edward 4th Gateshead was united to Newcastle. Why it was disfranchised he knew not; but it was sufficient for him to show, as he thought he had fully done, that Merthyr Tydvil had a stronger claim to a Member than Gateshead, he must, therefore, contend, that the latter ought to be struck out of schedule D. Wales ought to have thè same justice dealt to her as was administered to England. He entreated the Committee, as Merthyr Tydvil stood alone, and could not otherwise gain a Representative, not to commit so great an inconsistency as to refuse it a Member in preference to Gateshead.

Lord John Russell

expected, that the noble Lord would have laid down some better rule than that adopted by Ministers, when he reproached them with following a varied rule. The noble Lord, however, to make out his case, had referred to some boroughs, which, he thought, ought to be disfranchised. Did the noble Lord, then, wish to extend disfranchisement? He had never before known that the noble Lord was an advocate for that principle, but when he thought proper to bring forward any proposition of that kind, the noble Lord would not find him backward in supporting his Motion. According to the noble Lord's own showing, there were other towns, with a smaller population than Gateshead, such as Whitby, which, he said, ought not to have had Members allotted to them; and, as the whole of his argument was based upon the ground of comparative importance, had he been consistent, he would have moved, that Merthyr Tydvil should have been substituted for that place, which was the smallest in schedule D. But here the noble Lord made an exception to his own rule, and, for reasons of his own, passed over that place, and selected Gateshead to be disfranchised, although he had admitted, that Whitby was a place of less consequence. With respect to Gateshead, he must observe, that it was an increasing town, separate and distinct from Newcastle, containing 15,000 inhabitants, and ought to have a Member, though not at the expense of any other place. There was no pretence for uniting it to Newcastle or Shields, any more than to unite Chatham with Rochester, or Salford with Manchester. If the noble Lord were to carry the general principles which he had propounded into effect, in the principality, he must disfranchise a number of the old and small boroughs in Wales. Ministers had not proceeded to that extent, as they found that it would be more satisfactory to the inhabitants of the principality to preserve their old boroughs, they had accordingly retained them. They found one of these close to Merthyr Tydvil, and they thought it was quite consistent with the principles of Representation which already existed in Wales to unite Merthyr Tydvil with that borough. It would have been more handsome of the noble Lord, if he had offered to resign the third Member which Mon- mouth had received, and give him to Merthyr Tydvil, instead of taking one from Gateshead. It was said, that Durham was better represented than any other county. But how was this proved? Certainly, not by the population returns, for Wiltshire had one Member for 13,000 inhabitants; Sussex, one for 15,000; Southampton, one for 19,000; Dorset, one for 11,000; Bucks, one for 13,000; Hereford, one for 15,000; Huntingdon, one for 13,000, and Rutland, one for between 9,000 and 10,000; while Durham had one for every 25,000 only. By these statements it appeared, that the southern counties had a great advantage in point of comparative Representation. They had obtained this, in the first instance, because they were rich and populous, and the counties in the north were then neglected, because they were poor. Now, the counties of the north were become also rich and flourishing, and, therefore, they were to have something like a due proportion of the Representation. A right hon. Baronet (Sir Robert Peel), in a former debate, drew a line betwixt the north and south, and endeavoured to show, that the latter had been sacrificed. He had since examined that calculation, and he found, that, in the south, the proportion of Representation would be as one Member to 22,000, while, in the north, there would be one to 28,000 or 29,000. It would be perceived by the returns he had quoted, that Durham had, by this arrangement, no more than one Representative in 25,000; and he would, therefore, conclude by declaring that, in his opinion, the share it possessed in the aggregate Representation of the country, was only meeted out in a just proportion to its contribution to the strength, revenue, and welfare of the empire at large.

Sir Robert Peel

said, he was always happy to be invited to the field of argument by the noble Lord, though he must say, that the noble Lord's present answer to an argument of his made last Session was somewhat tardy, and not quite appropriate to the question before the Committee. He was anxious to bring the question at issue within the smallest possible compass, and he should, therefore, confine himself to but one test of the solidity of the noble Lord's reasoning, on which he preferred giving a Member to Gateshead, instead of Merthyr Tydvil. He would take as his test the town of Toxteth Park, and he believed he should be able to show the noble Lord, that, according to his own argument, and according to the principles of the Bill, Toxteth Park was better entitled to a Member than Gateshead. He would first take the relative amount of population in the two counties in which those places were respectively situate—Lancashire and Durham. The county of Durham, with a population of 253,000, had four Members, and the county of Lancaster, with a population of 1,335,000, was to have only four Members. Why, even throwing away the million, still Lancashire was not so fully represented as Durham, for it would then have 80,000 people more than Durham; and, if any argument could be drawn in favour of the Representation of one town in preference to another, on account of the state of the County Representation, the argument was clearly in favour of Toxteth Park. But, to consider the question with reference to the relative importance and claims of the two places themselves, the hon. member for Liverpool had, in a former discussion, stated, that the people of Toxteth Park were not at all anxious to have a separate Representative, or to be severed from political connexion with the town of Liverpool. Now, he held in his hand the copy of a letter, addressed to the Secretary for the Home Department by the chairman of a public meeting held at Toxteth Park, in which an urgent claim was preferred for one Member in the distribution of the Representation. Having said so much with respect to the wishes of the people of Toxteth-park, he was also enabled to add, that they were not in the same parish with Liverpool, and that the Magistrates of Liverpool exercised no jurisdiction in any part of the town. He had thus disposed of the three objections mainly relied on, namely, the absence of any wish on the part of Toxteth Park, and the two allegations—first, of its being a part of the Parish of Liverpool—and, secondly, of its being included within the jurisdiction of the Liverpool Magistrates. He would now proceed to consider the comparative claims of Toxteth Park and Gateshead, premising that Liverpool, with which it was proposed to leave Toxteth Park connected, had only two Members for 165,000 persons, while Newcastle, from which they wished to separate Gateshead, had two Members for 42,000. What, in the first place, was the relative value of property in Gateshead and Newcastle? By the returns of 1815, the annual value of the real property of Gateshead was 25,000l. per annum; of Toxteth Park, in the same year, it was 27,000l. The returns of last year, however, from Toxteth Park showed the enormous increase from that sum to 94,000l. The population of Gateshead was 15,177; that of Toxteth Park, 24,000. But then it was said, that the progress which population and wealth were making were most important elements in considering to what new places Members should be given. That was true; but the more important were those elements, the more favourable did the case become for Toxteth Park; for, if ever there was a place in which population and wealth were increasing with wonderful rapidity, that place was Toxteth Park. According to the population returns, the people of Gateshead amounted, in 1801, to 8,600; in 1811, to 8,752; in 1821, to 11,800; in 1831, to 15,177. The progress in Toxteth Park was as follows: in 1801, 2,069; in 1811, 5,864; in 1821, 12,829; in 1831, 24,000; thus doubling itself with giant strides in every succeeding return. It had, at the present time, 2,617 houses of 10l. a-year value and upwards. He could add but little to a statement of this kind in the way of argument. It was, he thought, most important, that, in distributing the Representation, they should draw a distinction between places which were nearly stationary,or increasing slowly, and those which were increasing with the rapidity of Toxteth Park. He had shown, that that place was not a part of Liverpool, and he believed its interests to be at least as distinct from those of Liverpool as were the interests of Gateshead from those of Newcastle. He must, therefore, contend, that, if there was any truth in figures, or if any conclusions could be drawn from plain statements of facts, Toxteth Park was entitled to a Member in preference to Gateshead.

Mr. Ewart

admitted, that he had not been aware of the fact of the public meeting being held at Toxteth, and that the inhabitants were so anxious to have a Representative; but this he would say, that, admitting Toxteth to have 24,000 people, how were they, if they gave it one Member, to pass over the claims of the 170,000 inhabitants of the other suburbs of Liverpool? Certainly they also would expect to be specifically represented. Those who called for a Representative for Toxteth Park certainly acted inconsistently, when they refused to give additional Members for the districts of London.

Lord Althorp

allowed, that the right hon. Baronet's statements might show good reason for giving a Representative to Toxteth, but none for refusing to enfranchise Gateshead. He did not consider himself bound, on this occasion, to argue the question relating to Toxteth Park. Ministers had looked to Gateshead as a place worthy of standing by itself, and, therefore, they had thought it right to propose, that it should have its own separate Member, and they dealt with it, with Chatham, and with Salford, in a similar manner. The right hon. Baronet's argument applied rather to the small towns in schedule B than to Gateshead in particular, and, therefore, was inconclusive.

Mr. Labouchere

felt strongly that the real objects of the Bill for the Reform of the Representation of that House would be best accomplished and secured by granting the right of Representation to the town of Merthyr Tydvil, as the more important place upon which their election could in justice alight. In making this statement of his views, as respected that great centre of a peculiar branch of industrious wealth, he would also say, that it would seem better in his mind, that Gateshead should be included within the constituency of Newcastle, with which it was so intimately connected, that the union of the two places could not possibly be considered a deprivation of the right to Gateshead. He had, in this instance, for the first time since the Reform question was before them, separated in opinion from his Majesty's Ministers, nor would he have given his vote thus to-night, but that he considered he was in justice bound to dissent from the view they had taken of the question. Indeed, it was impossible for him, looking to the state of the Representation for South Wales and for the county of Durham, that he could for a minute hesitate as to giving a separate Representation to Merthyr Tydvil, in preference to Gateshead.

Sir Matthew White Ridley

said that Gateshead was wholly and entirely distinct from Newcastle. It had a local Magistracy—it possessed a very numerous and increasing population, and contained important manufactories, connected with the glass and iron trades. These were all distinct elements of Representation, and there were several places in schedule D that did not possess these advantages to such an extent as Gateshead. To this he would add, that it had different interests from Newcastle, and the same Members could not, therefore, represent both with propriety.

Sir Richard Vyvyan

said, the question was, whether Gateshead should be considered as part of Newcastle, and so be represented by his hon. friend opposite (Sir M. W. Ridley), and a Member given to another place, or whether it should have a Representative of its own. He certainly was in favour of withdrawing the Member from Gateshead, and placing the right elsewhere. He must remind the House, that, as in the making a choice, neither places being boroughs, they were not called on to interfere with vested rights, but with the Minister's caprice, who had not hesitated to disregard all the principles they had themselves laid down in regard to other places, turning their backs upon their favourite principle of extent of population, as well as upon the great manufacturing importance of the town of Merthyr Tydvil, as compared with the town of Gateshead. He confessed, that in his life he never heard any thing more clear and convincing than the argument of the right hon. Baronet this evening, as to the superiority of the claim of Toxteth over that of Gateshead. He congratulated the House and the country on the circumstance of the hon. Member for Taunton having evinced, though usually voting with Ministers, the firmness of mind to think for himself in this instance, and, in compliance with the dictates of his own good sense, resolve to vote against the proposition of the noble Lord. This was the way by which Members—and the oftener they were seen pursuing it the better—would ensure the confidence of the public, and respect even from opponents within those walls. For his own part, he could not see how it was possible to hesitate, when the question before them was simply, whether Gateshead or Merthyr Tydvil was entitled to have the benefit of a separate Representation?

Mr. John Stanley

trusted, the House would bear with him while he stated a few reasons which had not been as yet urged in support of the Motion before the Committee. The case consisted of two distinct questions—the claim that Gateshead had to an independent Representation, or the propriety of excluding it in favour of Merthyr Tydvil. The latter question had been set at rest by the right hon. Baronet, the member for Tamworth, who had clearly proved, that if any place was entitled to additional Representation, it was Toxteth Park; so that the case might be argued solely with reference to Gateshead, and whether it was a place of sufficient importance of itself to entitle it to a separate Member. He must observe, that it was rather strange that some hon. Members should argue in favour of additional Members for large towns, when they must be elected by a constituency they, at other times, considered as revolutionary, and likely to return a description of Members hostile to the best interests of the community; it was as though they were to ask for more of that poison which they were accusing the Government of infusing into the Constitution of the country. If amount of population, diversity of interests, and incompatibility of an advantageous union, could be adduced in favour of Gateshead, it must be allowed, that it would be doing an act of injustice, if, for the sake of giving a Member to Merthyr, they were to despoil the town of Gateshead of its proposed Representative. There were six towns in schedule D inferior to it in amount of population, seven in assessed taxes, and seven in the number of 10l. houses. The House had already decided (and it was urged, particularly by Members opposite) that Chatham should have a separate Member from Rochester, yet the united population of these places was but 28,000; while Newcastle alone had 55,000, and Gateshead 15,000, making 70,000. Mention had been made of the town of Newcastle having, at a former period, had jurisdiction over Gateshead; that was true; and he would adduce that circumstance as one of the strongest grounds for claiming a separate Representation for Gateshead. In the reign of Edward 6th, when, as the House knew, the county of Durham had no Representatives in Parliament, and when there was a vacancy in the see of Durham, the Corporation of Newcastle succeeded in getting an Act of Parliament to secure to themselves the jurisdiction over Gateshead, depriving that place of its ancient rights and privileges; but this unholy union lasted only six months. In the 1st of Queen Mary, when a Bishop was appointed, he immediately procured the repeal of this unjust Act, and succeeded in restoring to Gateshead her usurped rights and liberties; but, from the absence of Representatives for the county of Durham, the Corporation of Newcastle were continually making attempts on their liberties, and oppressing them in every way that their power and position enabled them; and, even to this day, so great was the hostility of feeling, and opposition of interests, that every article of commerce and exchange that passed from Gateshead into Newcastle paid a toll to the Corporation of Newcastle; and it was attempted to depress and annoy Gateshead by every vexatious exercise of power that Newcastle possessed. The House had heard a great deal of the last number of Members allotted to the county of Durham, and yet the fact was, that there was but one county in England—Essex—that had a larger population and fewer Members, in proportion to its population, while there were eight with a smaller population, and as many Members; and the very object that hon. Gentlemen opposite were seeking was, to put the county of Glamorgan in a better situation than Durham. The transfer of Gateshead to Merthyr would give Glamorgan one Member to 25,000, and reduce Durham to one for 28,000, inhabitants; so that that proportion which they considered so monstrous and unfair with regard to Durham, they would readily allow when apportioned to Glamorgan, which proved the absurdity or dishonesty of their repeated attacks on the much maligned county of Durham. With how much more reason might any one complain of one Member being given to 11,000 in the Tory county of Dorset, or one to 13,000 in the county of Buckingham, and only one to 38,000 in the Whig county of Derby, or one to 25,000, as in Durham; but it would be tedious to pursue this part of the argument. It might be sufficient to observe, that the Representation of Wales rested upon an entirely different footing from that of England, and that, in every instance where towns of sufficient importtance were found, it had always been the custom (not deviated from in a single instance in the present Bill) to unite them as contributory boroughs, as in Scotland; and the distance from one to another was of no more consequence in a large place like Merthyr than it was in small places like those in the other counties of Wales: and if Cardiff complained, she must remember that she would be much worse off, if left with her original contributory bo- rough of Swansea, than when joined to Merthyr, with which she was so intimately connected in interests and communication. But whatever the merits of either Merthyr Tydvil, or Toxteth Park might be, those places ought to stand on their own deserts. There was no reason to commit an act of injustice to Gateshead, to secure justice, to those other places. They were now deciding on the claims that Gateshead had to a Representative, and if, as he before mentioned, population, diversity of interests, wealth, and respectability, entitled any place to the privilege of returning a separate Member to Parliament, that place was Gateshead; and he trusted, that even the hopes of securing another Member to a great and populous town in Wales, would not induce those Members, who, on a former occasion, decided that Gateshead was a fit place to send a Member to Parliament, now to come to a decision completely at variance with their former vote.

Mr. Croker

said, the hon. Gentleman who had just addressed the House rested his argument principally on an appeal to the consistency of both sides of the House. He first of all addressed the Gentlemen on this side, and asked how it was possible that they, who could vote for Chatham, as they did last year, could this year vote against separating Newcastle from Gateshead; and then he turned round to his hon. friends on that side of the House, and said, "How can you be so inconsistent as to vote against Gateshead now, having voted for it last year." When the hon. Gentleman was accusing both sides of the House of this inconsistency, he himself fell into the greatest inconsistency of all; for, last year, he voted against the question of Chatham, and this evening he had supported it. He reserved all his arguments for his favourite case of Durham; but he ratified the case of Chatham by his vote, whether he took a part in the argument or not, and having done so, he thought he was the only man in that House who had a right to change his opinion. And yet, notwithstanding this, the hon. Gentleman appealed to his hon. friends, and said, "What! will you to-night vote for disfranchising Gateshead?" What would the hon. Gentleman say to the man who voted for the preservation of Ald borough last Session, and voted against it this; who voted for preserving Oakhampton last Session, and who condemned it now; who voted last Session for condemning Mid- hurst, and who now turned round and voted in its favour. The hon. Gentleman went to work with such surprising vigour, that he not only hit himself, but actually prostrated with his blows all his hon. friends. The hon. Member for Liverpool took upon himself to lecture his right hon. friend for having gone to the banks of the Mersey, when he ought to have remained on the banks of the Tyne. But did not the hon. Gentleman know that the question before the House related to the propriety of leaving out Gateshead, and that it was open to every Member, whose local knowledge enabled him to do so, to give the House information as to what other places had a superior claim to Representation. Was it an argument in favour of Gateshead, that twenty hon. Gentlemen could produce twenty different places which ought to stand before it. The hon. Gentleman who sat down last declared, that Gateshead was quite safe, for the right hon. Baronet, the Member for Tamworth, had completely killed Merthyr Tydvil, for he had adduced the case of Toxteth Park, the claims of which were so much greater, that Merthyr Tydvil was cast into the shade. So it might be as regarded Toxteth Park, but it remained in full brilliancy as regarded Gateshead. It might fall into the shade as compared with other places that were above it thousands in population and tens of thousands in importance. If an additional reason was required for not giving Gateshead Representation, it was to be found in those two cases which had been produced; "but no," the hon. Gentleman said, "you have destroyed your own argument; if you had adduced one case, Gateshead would have been safe; but if you bring forward two cases, they will spike one another, and Gateshead will escape while they are squabbling." Twenty places in England might be mentioned, which in any point of view—wealth, population, respectability, or any other consideration—had a decided superiority over Gateshead. The hon. member for Liverpool told his right hon. friend, that he had no right to adduce the case of Toxteth Park; and then the same hon. Gentleman upon whose authority the whole debate of the other night turned, and to whose supposed local information great deference was paid, was obliged to stand up and confess to the House, that his statements were incorrect, that his facts were mistakes, The hon. Gentleman, said, he did not know that a meeting was held, and made his ignorance his excuse. But he ought not to have spoken on matters he was ignorant of. He had misled the House by stating, that the place was extra-parochial, he had stated, that Toxteth Park had made no appeal or claim for Representation. That declaration was received with cheers; nay, it even led the noble Lord, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, into an error; for although he undoubtedly had read all these papers, this point for once escaped his memory; and he thought he could not be mistaken if he trusted to the information of the Member for the place; but the Member for the place was wrong; he had stated that which was not the fact; he had said, that no application had been made to this House when there had been a meeting in Toxteth Park in May, 1831, and when that meeting had preferred its claim for Representation. And then when the hon. Gentleman was shown to have made this mistake, he said he hoped he might be excused, but in truth he had never heard of it. God forbid that he should for a moment charge the hon. member for Liverpool with stating that which he knew was not the fact. He firmly believed that he did not know it, and that was the very essence of the argument. Toxteth Park was so little connected with Liverpool, that he, the member for the town of Liverpool, had no idea of what was passing in Toxteth Park. He would take it which way he pleased; he did know nothing about it; the places were distant and different; and he was affecting to represent a place while he did not even know of the public meetings which were held in it. But, to come to the case of Gateshead: would the House now make a little tour with him, it would be a very short one; and yet they would see a good many boroughs. Setting out from Durham, which had two Members, they might proceed to Sunderland, a distance of twelve miles; this place had two Members also; then, proceeding to the town of South Shields, some half-mile further, and there was another new borough created. Crossing the river about two hundred yards, they would come to another created borough, with another Member. Seven milesmore, and they would arrive at Newcastle, with two Members. The stone bridge over the river Tyne was all that was then between them and the created borough of Gateshead, being six boroughs within a circle of ten miles. Durham, Sunderland, South Shields, North Shields, Newcastle, and Gateshead. He would refer the House to the instructions given to his Majesty's Commissioners, which were so peculiarly applicable to the case of Gateshead, that one would almost think they were describing that very place, when they gave these instructions—"A continuous portion of streets, though forming a town under a different name; a town or a village separated by a river, but connected by a bridge with houses on both sides, extending to the river shall be included as one borough." This was the guide which was given to the Commissioners—this was the rule which they were to follow, and if there was any fault with it, it was this, that it did not give them an option in the case of Gateshead. They had not the opportunity of exercising a fair discretion, for they were so tied down, that they must have included, had they followed these instructions, Gateshead with Newcastle. But was this all? was there no other principle advanced by Ministers? Why, in the remarkable case of the metropolitan districts they brought forward another, and a very wise principle, which they had acted upon on several occasions, but which they had violated in this instance. They justified the creation of the metropolitan districts on account of the nearest rural borough; their first defence for Finsbury, and Marylebone, and Lambeth, and Southwark was, that Reigate, the nearest rural borough, was twenty-one miles off. The several boroughs nearest London, they said, were Reigate, St. Albans, Maidstone, Rochester, and so on, and they gave this to the House as a reason, and a very good reason, why Representation should not be conglomerated in particular places. But how had they acted upon this principle? In the eastern corner of the county of Durham they had assembled more boroughs than there were about the metropolis of this great empire. Much as had been said a few nights ago of the dangerous extent of metropolitan Representation, there was a greater number of boroughs connected with and created in the north-east corner of the county of Durham and its opposite shore—in Newcastle, North Shields, and South Shields—than in the whole circle of the Metropolis. Durham, as a county, was to be divided into two parts; the northern part was to consist of the wards of Chester and Easington, and the southern parts of the wards of Darlington and Stockton. The northern part received two Members, the southern part obtained the same, but in addition the northern part got Gateshead, South Shields, and Sunderland. There were three boroughs created in the smaller district the northern part of that county, which gave it a preponderance of six, whereas the extensive southern division of the county was to have no Member whatsoever. Was this compatible with the principles which had been laid down, that Representation was not to be accumulated in one place, but that it was to be spread over different parts of the country? Was it to be borne that these boroughs were to be created in the ward of Chester, while the other three wards of the county were left without any addition whatsoever. Let the House compare this with the case of Toxteth Park. Liverpool was a very large town, and had two Members. If the metropolitan principle was applied to that town, which would be the nearest borough? Warrington sixteen miles off; the next, Chester, about seventeen or eighteen; the next Wigan, which was twenty-four miles from Liverpool. On what principle, then, was Toxteth Park refused a Member, while one was given to Gateshead? One hon. Gentleman had said that, the question now was, whether this Member was to be given to Merthyr Tydvil, and another said, that the question was, whether the Member was to be allowed to Toxteth Park. He denied both these propositions. The question was, whether Gateshead was to have it, in preference to either. On all the principles of this Bill, Merthyr Tydvil had a prior claim to Toxteth Park, because it was twenty seven miles from the nearest place for Representation; it was itself the capital of a great district; it was the seat of a large and thriving trade; it had interests peculiar to itself; and, therefore, it had a preferable claim to Toxteth Park. He should be prepared to show, when they again came to discuss the principle of the Bill, that there were many cases still stronger in the Bill on that point. He was sure he should be triumphant in argument, if not in numbers. He was not then discussing the principle of the Bill as he had done on the second reading, nor could he ever be an advocate for it; but he was then showing, as it was his business, that the principle laid down by Ministers had not been fairly acted upon.

Mr. Ewart

observed, that the right hon. Gentleman had charged him with having mis-stated the opinion of the inhabitants of Toxteth Park. He denied that he had made any mis-statement on the subject. He had merely mentioned that the fact had not come to his knowledge until he had heard it stated by the right hon. Baronet. If, indeed, he had been inclined to indulge in mis-statements, he might easily have taken a lesson from the right hon. Gentleman himself; for who was there who was not acquainted with the singular accuracy of that right hon. Gentleman's historical statements, which were only to be equalled by the modesty with which they were delivered? He sought not to rival the right hon. Gentleman in his proverbial inaccuracy and tergiversation. He must, however, be permitted to state, that if the inhabitants of Toxteth Park expressed a desire of having a separate Representative, he would not only support them in such an object, but also the remaining inhabitants of Liverpool and its neighbourhood, in applying for a proportionate number of Representatives for themselves. Generally, however, he opposed any change in the Bill for which the most weighty reasons were not adduced, because if they once commenced with change, there was no knowing where it would stop; and he supported the Bill as a whole, because he thought that the speedy passing of such a measure was absolutely necessary for the salvation of the country.

Mr. Croker

said, that the hon. Gentleman had said that he might take a lesson from him (Mr. Croker.) He should have one. It was this. What he had charged the hon. Gentleman with he had stated in a parliamentary way, fairly, openly, and without disguise. Had the hon. Gentleman done so by him? He begged to inform the hon. Gentleman that he laughed to scorn the mean and calumnious insinuations in which the hon. Gentleman had indulged towards him. Would the hon. Gentleman be pleased to tell him what action of his life—what word that might have fallen from him in his various addresses—what statement that he had ever made, that he could put his finger on, and venture to attack or contradict it? "When a man," continued the right hon. Gentleman, "has a bad case, he is always most ready and anxious to pick a quarrel." Now, though I am not one that has ever been desirous to do so, I beg to tell the hon. Gentleman that I shall be ready for him in whatever place he shall choose to quarrel with me" [calls of order.]

The Chairman

I put it to the good sense and parliamentary experience of the right hon. Gentleman, whether he thinks it worth his while to proceed in such a course as this?

Mr. Croker

You have put the thing in a way, Sir, that I cannot possibly resist your request. I quite agree with you that it is not worth my while to go on with this discussion.

Lord Milton

observed, that the instructions given to the Commissioners on which the right hon. Gentleman had commented, were not intended for great towns like Gateshead and Newcastle, but were only applicable to small places bordering either on total or partial disfranchisement, consequently the observations made by the right hon. Gentleman only verified the old saying, that "a cunning man was sure to go on blundering."

Mr. Croker

I never saw any one look so like a cunning man as the noble Lord, when he made that observation.

Lord Dudley Stuart

said, as he had formerly voted against Merthyr Tydvil, and now proposed to vote the contrary way, he was anxious to explain his reasons for altering his opinion. When the late Reform Bill was before the House, he did not think Glamorganshire had made out so strong a case as at present, and he considered the arrangement then proposed by which Cardiff and Merthyr Tydvil were to have one Member between them, and Swansea a Member to itself, was infinitely preferable to the old system: following out the same idea, he now thought it would be a still greater improvement if Merthyr Tydvil and Cardiff had separate Members. He had always entertained strong objections to the plan of contributory boroughs, as he held it impossible for a Member to duly represent several towns many miles apart, and which might have a great diversity of interests. In fact, it frequently happened that there was a considerable jealousy between places so circumstanced. The noble Lord, the Paymaster of the Forces, had said, that if they had followed the principles of the Bill strictly with regard to Wales, they would have been compelled to have disfranchised several small places. If that, was held out as a threat, it had no weight with him; if there were places too inconsiderable to return a Member, he had no objection to their disfranchisement; his object was, to see great interests properly represented—therefore he was decidedly of opinion that Merthyr Tydvil ought to have a separate Member, but if the fixed marriage between that, place and Cardiff must take place, then, he contended, they had a right to double Representation. There were several places in schedule C inferior in population to Merthyr Tydvil and Cardiff united, and as it had been declared, in the course of the evening, that the rule of enfranchisement was merely population, he might rest their claim on that element of Representation alone. He had, however, been at some pains to calculate their relative position according to the number of 10l. houses and assessed taxes, and he found that four places which were to receive two Members—Macclesfield, Bradford, Oldham, and Blackburn—were inferior to Merthyr Tydvil and Cardiff in that respect, as well as in population, while Halifax was rather superior in assessed taxes, but far inferior in population. It must, also, be recollected, that in the Bill of last Session all those places were in schedule D, but were now to have two Members. He thought the claim, therefore, of one for Merthyr Tydvil, or two, if it was united with Cardiff, indisputable; and although he had generally supported the Bill, and much wished to see its main principles adopted, that was no reason for agreeing with all its details, and, therefore, he most certainly should support the Amendment.

Lord Sandon

said, that he had not been present during the greater part of this debate, having only just come into the House. As, however, he found that the claims of Toxteth Park to a Representative formed one of the topics of it, he begged to mention a curious circumstance connected with that subject, and it was this—that it was only this evening that, he had received by post a petition adopted at a numerous and public meeting of the inhabitants of Toxteth Park, expressing their great regret that their memorial, which had been transmitted to the Home Office, had not been attended to, and that their wishes to have a Representative had been unavailing. He begged, at the same time, to say, that he thought Gateshead was already sufficiently well represented by its connexion with Newcastle, and that Merthyr Tydvil possessed much better claims to a Representative.

Mr. Stanley

observed, that in the course of the debate, some expressions had fallen from hon. Members which, in a cooler moment, they could not fail to regret, and which, he doubted not, must have given pain to the whole House. His hon. friend, the member for Liverpool, had, in attempting to retort upon an accusation of inaccuracy, made against him by the right hon. Gentleman (Mr. Croker) used an expression—political tergiversation—which was calculated to give offence to the right hon. Gentleman. But he was quite confident that "tergiversation" was not the word his hon. friend intended to use. It was not at all applicable, and it might have been observed he (Mr. Ewart) paused for a moment before he used it, in search of some more appropriate word. In reply to his hon. friend, however, the right hon. Gentleman had used the expressions—"attempting to pick a quarrel," "mean and calumnious attacks," and the like—which were not in accordance with the courtesy observed in that House; and then, when the hon. Chairman had put to the right hon. Gentleman, whether it was worth his while to pursue a personal quarrel of this nature further, he had used the words—"it is not worth my while," with a tone and manner, and with a gesture which was certainly calculated to convey an impression of personal offence to his hon. friend. It would, accordingly, be a great satisfaction to the House if both hon. Members disclaimed the intention of giving personal offence.

Mr. Ewart

confirmed what had fallen from his right hon. friend. He did not intend to offer any insult to the right hon. Gentleman, or to convey any ungenerous sentiment. He had used the word "tergiversation" unintentionally, and nothing could be further from him than any wish upon his part to hurt the right hon. Gentleman's feelings. He was sorry for the expression, and had not the intention of casting on the right hon. Gentleman a shadow of the imputation which it was supposed to convey.

Mr. Croker

said, that the words to which his reply had been particularly addressed were, that "his inaccuracy had become proverbial." It was to that opinion he had directed his answer. But if the hon. Member did not mean any insinuation against him, his reply was uncalled for; and as there was nothing which it could meet, he had no hesitation in saying it fell to the ground. He had, also, no hesitation in saying, that he regretted that the hon. Member had not a little more clearly explained himself.

Mr. Ewart

said, he had only intended to use "inaccuracy" in the same sense in which it had been previously applied to himself by the right hon. Gentleman.

Sir Charles Wetherell

complained that the argument of the noble Lord had not been fairly applied to the question, but, as he saw the House was impatient, he would content himself by expressing his determination to support the Amendment that Merthyr Tydvil be substituted for Gateshead.

Mr. Hunt

said, that according to his notions of Reform, every place containing 15,000 persons ought to have a Representative, but if the question laid between Merthyr Tydvil and Gateshead, then he must vote for the former, as it had the largest population.

Mr. Baring

said, it should be recollected that Gateshead and Newcastle were not separate towns, for it was a fact, that a great number of the voters of Newcastle were resident in Gateshead. Besides this, the Bill allowed all present voters resident within seven miles of the respective towns to retain their franchise, and thus Gateshead would have an advantage, as the residents would have double votes.

Sir Matthew White Ridley

said, that the hon. Gentleman was mistaken in stating that a large proportion of the Newcastle voters resided in Gateshead, for, out of 3,000 resident voters, there were not at present more than 200 living in Gateshead, and, amongst these, not more than ten were 10l. householders.

The Committee then divided on the Original Question: Ayes 214; Noes 167—Majority 47.—And Gateshead was afterwards ordered to stand part of schedule D.

List of the AYES.
Althorp, Viscount Blake, Sir F.
Anson, Hon. Col. Blamire, W.
Atherley, A. Blunt, Sir C.
Baillie, J. E. Briscoe, J. I.
Bainbridge, E. T. Brougham, J.
Baring, F. T. Brougham, W.
Barnett, C. J. Buller, J. W.
Bayntun, S. A. Bulwer, E. E. L.
Beaumont, T. W. Burrell, Sir C.
Benett, John Burton, H.
Bentinck, Lord G. Byng, Sir J.
Berkeley, Captain Byng, G.
Blackney, W. Byng, G. S.
Calcraft, G. H. Macaulay, T. B.
Calley, T. Macdonald, Sir J.
Calvert, C. Marshall, W.
Carter, J.B. Mayhew, W.
Cavendish, Lord Milbank, M.
Chaytor, W. R. Mills, J.
Chichester, J. P B. Milton, Viscount
Cockerell, Sir C. Morpeth, Viscount
Colborne, N. W. R. Morrison, J.
Cradock, Colonel Norton, C. F.
Crampton, P. C. Nowell, Alex.
Creevey, T. Ord, W.
Curteis, H. B. Owen, Sir J.
Denison, W. J. Paget, Sir Charles
Denman, Sir T. Paget, Thomas
Duncombe, T. Palmer, General
Dundas, Sir R. L. Pelham, Hon. C. A.
Dundas, Hon. J. C. Pendarves, E. W. W.
Dundas, Hon. T. Penleaze, John S.
Easthope, J. Penryhn, E.
Ellice, Edward Petit, Louis H.
Ellis, W. Petre, Hon. E.
Etwall, R. Philips, C. M.
Evans, W. Philips, G. R.
Evans, W. B. Price, Sir R.
Ewart, William Ramsden, J. C.
Fellowes, H. A. W. Ridley, Sir M. W.
Foley, Hon. T. H. Robarts, A. W.
Foley, J. H. H. Robinson, Sir G.
Folkes, Sir W. Rumbold, C. E.
Fordwich, Lord Russell, Lord J.
Glynne, Sir S. Russell, Sir R. G.
Gordon, R. Russell, Lieut.-Col.
Graham,Rt.hon.Sir J. Russell, W.
Grant, Right Hon. R. Schonswar, G.
Grosvenor, Lord R. Scott, Sir E. D.
Handley, W. F. Sebright, Sir J.
Harvey, D. W. Skipwith, Sir G.
Hawkins, J. H. Smith, J. A.
Heneage, G. F. Smith, R. V.
Heron, Sir R. Stanley,Rt.hon.E.G.S.
Heywood, B. Stanley, J.
Hobhouse, Sir J. C. Stephenson, H. F.
Hodges, T. L. Strickland, George
Hodgson, J. Strutt, Edward
Horne, Sir W. Surrey, Earl of
Howard, P. H. Thicknesse, Ralph
Howick, Viscount Thomson,Rt.Hon.C.P.
Hughes, Colonel Thompson, P. B.
Hume, J. Throckmorton, R. G.
James, W. Tomes, J.
Jerningham, hon.H.V. Tracy, Charles H.
Kemp, T. R. Troubridge, Sir E.
King, E. B. Tynte, C. K. K.
Langton, Colonel Venables, Alderman
Lawley, F. Vere, J. J. H.
Lee, J. L. H. Vernon, Hon. G. J.
Lefevre, C. S. Vernon, G. H.
Leigh, T. C. Villiers, F.
Lennard, T. B. Villiers, T. H.
Lennox, Lord W. Vincent, Sir F.
Lennox, Lord George Waithman, Alderman
Lester, B. L. Walrond, B.
Littleton, E. J. Warburton, Henry
Lumley, J. S. Warre, John Ashley
Lushington, Dr. S. Waterpark, Lord
Maberly, Col. W. L. Watson, Hon. R.
Whitbread, W. H. Browne, J.
Wilbraham, G. Brownlow, C.
Williams, Sir J. Callaghan, D.
Williamson, Sir H. Chichester, Sir A.
Wood, J. French, A.
Wood, Alderman Grattan, H.
Wrightson, W. B. Grattan, J.
Wrottesley, Sir J. Hill, Lord G. A.
SCOTLAND. Hort, Sir J.W.
Adam, Admiral C. Jephson, C. D. O
Campbell, W. F. Killeen, Lord
Dixon, Joseph King, Hon. R.
Fergusson, R. C. Knox, Hon. Col. J.
Gillon, W. D. Lambert, H.
Haliburton, Hon.D.G. Lambert, J. S.
Johnston, A. Leader, N. P.
Johnstone, J. Macnamara, W.
Loch, James Musgrave, Sir R.
Mackenzie, S. O'Connell, M.
M'Leod, R. O'Connor, Don
Morison, J. O'Farrell, R. M.
Ross H. Ponsonby Hon. G.
Sinclair, G. Power, R.
Stewart, Sir M. S. Rice, Hon. T. S.
Stewart, E. Ruthven, E. S.
Traill, G. Sheil, R. L.
IRELAND. Walker, C. A.
Acheson, Viscount White, Colonel H.
Belfast, Earl of White, S.
Bodkin, J. J. Wyse, T.

On the Motion that Huddersfield stand part of schedule D,

Lord Morpeth

said, he would take the opportunity of adverting to a petition which had been presented from Huddersfield, praying that the franchise of that place might not be confined to the township, but extended to the whole parish. The ground upon which that prayer was advanced, was that nearly the whole of the town was the property of an individual who let it out upon rack rents, and who, consequently, had the means of exercising a very powerful control over his tenants, as from the rapid growth of the town, many persons were without even the ordinary security of building leases. To limit the franchise to the town, therefore, would be to confer an immense advantage upon an individual, but to bestow little or no advantage on the population at large. This would be remedied by including the whole of the parish in the borough. He had only to observe, that, upon the score of population and wealth, it would be no more than a proper compliment to Huddersfield to admit it to the right of returning two Members. That, however, was a point upon which he should not enlarge, but leave it to be dealt with according to the discretion of the House.

Mr. Littleton

said, that as one of the Commissioners upon whom was devolved the duty of fixing the limits of the new borough of Huddersfield, he felt himself called upon to state that, in performing that duty, he did not conceive himself bound to consider the extent of property which any individual might possess within the borough, or his political opinions. The present was not the proper occasion for entering into any discussion upon the subject, or he had no doubt that he could explain in a very satisfactory manner the reason why the franchise of Huddersfield was limited to the town.

Mr. Wrangham

confirmed the statement of the petitioners, and contended, that limiting the franchise to the township would be giving the Representation to one individual.

Lord Milton

said, that formerly the opinion was general that Huddersfield was the property of one person, but that did not hold at present; for although the greatest part of the town was the property of one gentleman, yet it now was spreading fast into other estates within the township. The other parts of the township, too, included a greater number of acres than the property of the gentleman alluded to.

Mr. Strickland

thought that the fair advantage should be allowed to Huddersfield that was given elsewhere, and he would, at the proper season, when the Boundaries Bill came before the House, advocate the extension of the franchise to the parish.

Mr. Hunt

knew, that the property in Huddersfield belonged to one family, and there was ground to believe they would give to one individual too much influence. The Commissioners, in his opinion, had gone beyond their duty in confining the limits to the borough.

Mr. Ramsden

said, that his noble friend (Lord Milton) was mistaken as to the spreading of the town, for the whole of it, with the exception of one house, belonged to his (Mr. Ramsden's) father. It had been in the family for many generations, and it was their boast, that notwithstanding the accumulation of capital and the minute subdivision of property, still the people continued to give the preference to that property, although they had the power of going to other parts of the township.

Huddersfield ordered to stand part of the schedule.

Kidderminster, Kendal, and Rochdale were also placed in the schedule.

On the Motion that Salford be placed in schedule D,

Mr. Stuart Wortley

said, he would not persist in opposing the Motion, but protested against the principle of giving one Member to Salford, as that would be in effect giving three Members to Manchester. If Ministers were consistent, they ought to give two Members to that place, on account of its trade and population, if it was to be considered a separate place. He thought, however, that it ought to have been joined to Manchester, as the cotton trade had already received a sufficient number of Members.

Lord Althorp

said, he could not agree to give two Members to Salford, although he was of opinion it was fully entitled to one.

Salford placed in schedule D.

House resumed, Committee to sit again.