HC Deb 27 March 1832 vol 11 cc955-70
Sir Frederick Trench

, on rising to move for returns connected with the expenditure on Buckingham Palace, said, he should not apologize to the House for taking upon himself the voluntary duty of bringing this subject under its consideration. The object he had in view was, to point out the very large and extravagant expenditure which had already taken place; and not only that, but he thought he should be able to convince the House, that there was about to be incurred a further expenditure, to an incalculable amount, and such as would excite the surprise of hon. Members when he named it. He had been anxious to bring the subject before the House, and had been watching an opportunity of doing so for the last three weeks, because, at the present time, there were no less than seventy labourers employed daily at Buckingham Palace, directly in opposition to the plans which had been sanctioned by the Committee of the House, which had been appointed to inquire into and investigate the subject. With regard to the precise nature of their employment, he could not personally speak, for, though he had applied to the noble Lord at the head of the woods and forests for permission to inspect the works, not as an inquisitive spectator, but as a Member of the British Parliament, desirous of seeing what was doing, with a view to call the attention of the country to it—by that noble Lord he had been refused permission. It was true, he had been offered an inspection by his hon. friend, the Chairman of the Committee; but, after what had passed with the noble Lord to whom he had already alluded, he did not think proper to avail himself of the offer, and, therefore, he was not prepared to state what actually was going on. His hon. friend (the Chairman of the Committee) had intimated to him that he should not notice any observations which he might make upon the present occasion; and though he was perfectly aware that what he might state would not be considered worthy of the attention of the House, yet his desire was the more increased to express to the House the amount of the expenditure of the public money in the instance to which he now particularly referred. In doing so, he begged to state, that every syllable which he should urge was founded upon the Report of the Committee, and that of Mr. Blore, the architect, and not his own mere dictum. It appeared, from the Report of the Committee, that the first expenditure in four items, with the details of which it was unnecessary to trouble the House, amounted to the sum of 500,741l. actually laid out on the building, which, with the sum of 54,964l., for work delivered and completed by tradesmen—of 42,177l. for works in progress, but not completed—and a further sum of 15,414l., which was then necessary to finish the works in progress, made a total of 613,296l.; to which sum must be added the amount necessary to complete the Palace, which, exclusive of gilding, ornamental painting, and finishing the conservatories and court-yards, was estimated by the architects and surveyors of the Board of Works at 31,177l. But the Committee, in the same Report, had stated, that to make Buckingham Palace applicable as a royal residence, according to the plans and estimates of Mr. Blore, with which he would not now trouble the House in detail, an expenditure of 73,777l. was indispensable, exclusive of furniture, which he took could not amount to less than 300,000l.; and, in this respect, he formed his opinion from what had been expended at Windsor Castle, for which 279,000l. had been granted by Parliament, notwithstanding the furniture of Carlton House and Buckingham Palace had been appropriated to the purposes of Windsor Castle. He, therefore, thought he estimated the expense of the furniture for the new Palace extremely low when he named 300,000l. Adding Mr. Blore's estimate to the sums he had already named, together with the expense of furniture, it would be found that the entire expenditure would amount to no less than 1,063,573l. The expense which he (Sir Frederick Trench) had now stated would be required to make the Palace complete for a private Residence. But the Committee in their report went further, for they "recommended that the building, which is not applicable to any other public service, should be finished as a royal residence, and ultimately as a palace for the purposes of state, and thus prevent the necessity of any future expenditure on St. James's Palace." The House would hear with surprise, that, in addition to the parallelogram of buildings described in Mr. Blore's report, as proposed to be erected on the site of the circular colonnade, it had been proposed to raise another tier of attics over those now built, notwithstanding the ascertained weakness and unfitness of the walls; and when such crude plans were proposed, he trusted the House would agree with hint in thinking the sum of 75,000l. was not very likely to be sufficient. He contended that preliminary inquiry was required, and real information was wanting. The four architects consulted, were directed to report on the expense, security, and condition, of Buckingham House, and also to consider a minute of the Lords of the Treasury referring to the expediency of preserving St. James's Palace, and enlarging it on the side next to Marlborough House. What did the committee of architects state in their letter to Sir Benjamin Stephenson, and what reason had they assigned for not attending to the minutes of the Lords of the Treasury? The architects stated, that want of time, with other attendant circumstances, had compelled them to limit their present inquiries, leaving for a future occasion the other matters of reference which they conceived might be subject to alterations, or even rendered unnecessary by their then report. The subject had neither been fully investigated by the committee of architects, nor by the Committee of the House; for the House would bear in mind, that they had passed a resolution that it should be an instruction to the Committee on Buckingham Palace, to consider to what purpose it could be converted; but this resolution had never been taken into consideration, but had been blinked altogether. He had himself addressed a respectful letter to the hon. Chairman of that Committee, and requested to be permitted to be examined as a witness before them. His hon. friend, who was candour and good nature itself, told him, in reply to that communication, that the Committee thought the proposition he had made was wild and fantastical, and, therefore, could not be entertained. He was at a loss to know how the Committee could be aware of his proposition until they had heard it, and he should be glad to know from the noble Lord (Lord Duncannon) if the building was not, in every respect, calculated for the purpose of a barrack, capable of accommodating sixteen officers, and 2,700 men; and whether the saving likely to arise to the public from such an application of the building, was not estimated at between 200,000l. and 300,000l.? He could, if he had been examined, have proved this, and could also have shown that the building could have been made to produce 500,000l. But the Committee, without giving any consideration to the resolution or instruction of the House, and, after refusing the evidence of one who thought he could get them out of a very bad scrape, by the recovery of a very considerable portion of the expenditure, came to the recommendation, that the Palace should be finished for time purposes of State, which would require a further outlay of public money; and they conclude their report by "trusting that care will be taken that the estimates which may be approved, shall, as far as possible, not be exceeded, and that the responsible authorities will maintain a fixed determination to check any additional expend- iture." He begged now to call the attention of the House to the report of Mr. Blore; and though he had some distrust for amateur architects, he could not but admit that the report of that gentleman was most fair and candid. Mr. Blore did not pretend to accuracy in his statement as to the probable cost of the alterations necessary to fit the Palace for State purposes; and, in answer to that part of the inquiry, he had stated, that the subject was one requiring more time than had been allowed him, to give it that Cull consideration which ought to be bestowed upon so important an inquiry, before venturing to record an opinion upon it. He then went on to state, "that it was obvious, as a preliminary step towards accomplishing that object, a very considerable purchase of property of unascertained extent and value would necessarily be required on the side of Pimlico, and, until the practicability of obtaining, and the amount of such a purchase could be ascertained, it was impossible for him to frame a report to meet the demands of the minute and resolution referred to him." After this statement by an architect, he felt himself justified in asserting, that a more injudicious experiment had never been made, than ordering the continuation of the work, when the architect had declared it was at present impossible to ascertain the amount of expenditure which would be necessary to make it fit and competent for state purposes. The property to which Mr. Blore had referred in his report, as necessary to be acquired, consisted of a row of houses, at the corner of which stood a public-house, within thirty feet of that portion of the Palace which had originally been intended for the chapel, but which was now converted to some other purpose. The whole range must necessarily be purchased if the plan was to be persisted in, for he put it to the House, whether such a nuisance as the public-house he had mentioned could be permitted to remain in such near approximation to the palace of the King of this country? This property he did not believe could be purchased for less than 500,000l., taking a most subdued view of the value, and, notwithstanding the opinion of others was, that, if the brewery of Messrs. Elliott, and the steam-engine of Mr. Bramah, were not to be purchased, the property might be had for 200,000l., at which low estimate he set it. But he begged to call the atten- tion of the House to what were the preparations in the new Palace for State purposes, for levees, drawing-rooms, and balls. Between the two staircases were three apartments of various dimensions—one being twenty feet long and nine feet wide; another fifty feet by forty-three feet; and the third sixty-two feet by thirty-six feet; and in this last it was proposed to erect the throne. Besides these there were a number of small apartments, but altogether the best of them could not be put in comparison with the suite of seven rooms in York House, which were infinitely superior to those destined for State purposes in the Palace at Pimlico. In the proposed throne-room there was but one entrance, and the King would have no means of passing out unless it could be accomplished through the panel, like an harlequin. In St. James's Palace there were now six splendid apartments for the purposes of State, and he thought that ought to be an inducement not to dispose of the whole question of St. James's Palace in the cavalier way in which it was now proposed, by asking his Majesty to go to Buckingham Palace, merely because it would save any further expenditure at St. James's. The apartments at St. James's could not be fitted up at a less expense than 180,000l., and, if a similar expenditure was to be made at Buckingham Palace, which would be necessary to make it fit for State purposes, this sum, added to the amount to be expended in the acquisition of property, say 200,000l., would make a total for the cost of the new Palace, of 1,443,000l. He should not be surprised, if the accuracy of his statement was questioned by many hon. Gentlemen, but he trusted the House would think with him, that further expenditure ought not to be suffered, without first considering the two circumstances which had completely been blinked by both the Committee of the House, and the committee of architects—namely, whether the accommodation afforded at St. James's Palace was not sufficient; and, secondly, whether Buckingham House was not applicable to other purposes. He begged to mention one circumstance much to the credit of the late Government:—In looking over the estimated expenses of the Palace, he found, that the Duke of Wellington and the late Chancellor of the Exchequer, on coming into office, used their best endeavours to reduce the charges for the Palace. With that intention a Committee was appointed, and every effort was made by them and the then Government to arrest the lavish expenditure then making, and, in page sixty-five of the last Report, it would be seen that the right hon. Chairman, Mr. Goulburn, had struck out of the proposed items, for trellis-work, &c., in the flower-gardens, no less a sum than 56,000l. The late Government had never been charged with penuriousness, but, as the present Government was stated to be a most economical one, he appealed to the noble Lord, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, to have the subject re-considered before any further expenditure was made. He knew not what his Majesty's feelings might be on the subject, but, he maintained, further investigation was necessary. He could tell the House a saving might be made of not less than 700,000l., which it was purposed to lay out on a Palace which never could be inhabited. Indeed, whatever sum might be expended, it could never be rendered a fit residence for the Sovereigns of this country. The situation was unwholesome, for there was a large pool of water both in the rear and from of it. There were already complaints in the vicinity of the Palace, of the nuisance occasioned to the neighbourhood by the stagnant water in the gardens, as well of new mounds, forming by contract, from rubbish and filth brought from all parts of the town. The garden was as open to objection as the Palace itself. It might appear to some advantage on a fine day, to a person who entered it from the dirty and smoky streets of the metropolis, but it was utterly destitute of beauty, and it was overlooked by all the houses in Grosvenor-place and near Buckingham-gate. He had before said, the Palace was damp; indeed, it was impossible it could be otherwise, when it was considered that the basement story was below the level of the river at high water, and the premises were kept dry only by art. During the winter, not less than seventy fires had been necessary for that purpose, and these had been since superseded by a heating apparatus. The country would be loaded with the expense of both Palaces, for Buckingham Palace would never be habitable, and it was preferable to get rid of it by expending upon St. James's Palace 75,000l., than to leave St. James's, and expend 180,000l. on Buckingham House, to make it, as the Committee recommend- ed, a Palace for State purposes, with the indispensable preliminary of the purchases that must be made on the side of Pimlico, and the expenditure of at least 300,000l. for future furniture and decoration. In Buckingham House no accommodation was afforded for the servants. There were, indeed, fifty-one attics, but forty-six were very small rooms without fire-places; though he imagined it was considered that amends were made by there being thirty-four water-closets. It had been said, that the basement story of Buckingham House was extremely dark, but that defect might be remedied. But what was the report of the four architects? They said, "You may open the area, but two inconveniencies will follow: the apartments immediately over that story will not be inhabitable, on account of the noise of the servants; and individuals walking on the terrace will be exposed to the annoyance of seeing all that is going on in the area." In his opinion, it would be better to erect buildings for the Royal Family, in the space between Marlborough House and St. James's Palace. He would rather, at all times, judge by the expense which a building already erected had cost, when he was going to build one, than depend on the estimate of an architect. Now, York House had cost about 80,000l., and two houses of that description might be built in the space between St. James's and Marlborough House, for 160,000l. This was the consideration he wished to submit to the Committee, but they would not listen to him; he, therefore, found it necessary to institute some comparison between the accommodations of York House and Buckingham Palace:—In the first floor of Buckingham House there were only ten rooms, York house contained the same number, but much larger. The gallery in the former on the same floor was 126 feet by 22, in the latter, 125 feet by 32. The staircase on the first was 38 feet by 30, in York House, 80 feet by 45, including the corridor; York House, even standing singly, was almost equal to a Palace, while Buckingham House was a miserable, incommodious, ill-situated, place, and must be extremely unhealthy. It was seated near the common sewer. The sewer had, indeed, been removed to a little distance, but filth and nastiness abounded in it at every spring-tide. York House, in his mind, possessed a princely and splendid suite of rooms, which Buck- ingham House could not boast of. The former had cost 80,000l., the latter had swallowed up 700,000l. of the public money; and, before it was inhabitable, it would require 700,000l. more. An hon. friend of his had said, that he would get into a scrape by meddling with this subject; but he knew not what scrape he was likely to get into. He was an independent Member of Parliament, doing his duty, and showing to a retrenching Government what an immense expense had been incurred for a building which afterwards could not be occupied. He would now refer to the statement of the Lord Steward, who stated that he should require for his department, the whole of the basement story, the whole of the ground and upper floors of the south wing, with such additional accommodations as "I mark out in red ink;" and that of the Lord Chamberlain, in which he observed that Buckingham House was not at all calculated to enable their Majesties to hold courts there. His hon. friend, whom he had already alluded to as having apprised him that he would get into a scrape, also informed him, in his courteous note, that he did not wish to hear him speak on this subject. He supposed that his hon. friend considered him to be a wild visionary. He would, however, address his hon. friend in the words of the ancient Grecian hero, "Strike! but hear me!" It was not his intention to ask them to abandon the building, but he wished them, not only to save any further expense, but to recover some of that which had already been expended. Having stated the plan which he had in view in a printed circular, it was not necessary for him now to dilate at any great length upon it. His object was, to save to the public an expenditure of 700,000l. by changing the destination of the building, and he was sure that a positive gain would also be effected by adopting that plan. For this purpose he proposed that apartments should be appropriated in Buckingham Palace for the use of King's College. There was a willingness on the part of those who were connected with the College to accede to this proposition; but they said, that they had no money. To this it was answered that no money was wanted. The proposition was, that proper accommodation should be set apart in Buckingham House for King's College, and that the latter building should be converted into public offices. By this mode an expense of 15,000l. would be saved, which was at present paid for houses in which the business of the Government was transacted. This saving, at twenty years' purchase, would produce 300,000l. It was a discredit to this country that it should be without an elegant picture-gallery, and it was well known that many valuable collections were lost, for want of such a depositary. The present picture-gallery at Buckingham House was only 126 feet long, but his plan would give a picture-gallery 526 feet in length and twenty-eight in breadth. That of the Louvre was 1,300 feet long by thirty-five broad; but the one would be as superior in beauty as the other was in extent. Indeed so admirable a gallery would not exist in Europe. The upper part of the premises might be converted into an office for records, as it would admit of the most perfect ventilation, and was fire-proof, and the country was at present very much in want of such a place. There might also be a statue-gallery composed of two conservatories to the garden front, eighty-eight feet by fifty feet each, making 176 feet; which, with the terrace between them, 158 feet, would give a range of great beauty of 334 feet. The marble chimney pieces not yet set up had cost 18,970l.; the State Room doors, which might be unhinged and sent to St. James's cost 12,600l.; marble floors had cost 2,670l., and 104 marble columns 24,000l. The whole amounting with other items that might also be removed, to 94,000l. He was not one of those who would wish to see the King go down to the House in a hackney coach; or wish him to live in a ready-furnished lodging, and he believed that the most economical Member of that House—even the hon. member for Middlesex—was anxious to see a splendid and magnificent residence appropriated to his Majesty; and such a residence, he had no doubt, might be raised by his plan, without imposing any burthen on the public. To the sources of saving which he had already mentioned, there was to be added the 94,000l. he had just noticed. The account would then stand thus—if Buckingham House were disposed of in the manner which he proposed: In the first place, 700,000l., that otherwise must be hereafter expended, would be saved.

Saved by the appropriation of King's College to public offices, 15,000l.
per annum £.300,000
Picture Gallery 50,000
Statue Gallery 30,000
Attics for Records, 2,000l. per annum 40,000
Cellar and Basement, ditto 40,000
Credit for items, marble chimney pieces &c., at Buckingham-house 94,000
Thus would be realized, in money's worth the sum of 554,000l., which he looked upon as a very handsome sum to be recovered from the lavish expenditure of Buckingham House. If that place were not occupied, then the garden was unnecessary, and it contained 15,000 feet of frontage. That, if let for building at 3l. per foot, would produce 45,000l. per annum ground rent which, at twenty-seven years purchase would, produce 1,215,000l. As objections had, however, been raised to covering the ground with buildings, he would take but one-fourth of it, and instead of building rows of houses and squares, he proposed that it should be laid out in villas, like the Regent's-park. It would then, at the same rate of purchase, produce 303,750l. which, with the 554,000l. already pointed out, amounted to 857,750l. Deduct from that sum 160,000l., double the expense of York House, for the erection of the buildings he had previously mentioned for the residence of the King and Queen, and it would leave a net sum of 697,750l. for the erection of a splendid palace. And it should be observed that not one shilling of taxes would be necessary to effect this plan. He hoped the statement which he had made was sufficiently clear to induce the noble Lord to take it into his serious consideration. If the question were to be again opened and re-considered, he would not, having now stated his case to the House, trouble them further. But if a contrary course were taken, he would not, until he was convinced that he was in error, omit any opportunity, when the House was going into supply, of stating his opinion on this subject; and he would even lay a petition before his Majesty with respect to it. He had had an interview with the late King relative to the new Palace. He was received with the utmost affability. He then told his Majesty that, while he was sure that the humblest peasant in the country wished his Majesty to have a splendid residence, his best friends were obliged to confess, that large sums of money had been squandered on Buckingham House, but that nothing magnificent, nor even convenient, had been produced. It seemed to him that a comparison might well be drawn between the new Buckingham Palace and the Reform Bill. They were originally told, that Buckingham House was to be altered and repaired; but when he asked the persons there to show him some of the old Palace, he found that it had been wholly removed. A very small portion remained, near the King's bed room; therefore, he thought it might be said, that as the new Palace presented but a small portion of the old building, so it might be feared that the noble Lords' new Constitution would return but a very small remnant of the old one. With these observations, without trespassing further upon the patience of the House, he begged leave to move for a copy of any minute issued by the Lords of his Majesty's Treasury referring to the expediency of preserving St. James's Palace and of enlarging it by means of a communication with Marlborough House;" also for copies of the instructions given to Mr. Blore for the expenditure of 75,000l., granted for the erection of a parallelogram of buildings at Buckingham House, and the plans, estimates, and specifications of the building proposed to be erected.

Mr. Cressett Pelham

begged to take that opportunity to express his disapprobation of the expenditure of the public money in a way unsatisfactory to the people, as in the case of Buckingham Palace, without adding to the splendor or comfort of the Crown by the outlay.

Lord Duncannon

said, that, without meaning any disrespect to the hon. and gallant Member, he did not feel it his duty to go into any reply to the observations which the hon. Member had addressed to the House on this occasion. The whole of this subject had been already before a Select Committee of that House. That Committee had made its Report, and it was in pursuance of that Report, and upon the authority of the Committee that he had moved for, and had obtained, leave to bring in a Bill to apply the sum of 75,000l. for the completion of Buckingham Palace. The whole of this question, he repeated, having been brought under the consideration of a Committee, and that Committee having decided that the best plan was, to complete the Palace, he had felt it his duty to come to Parliament for the authority to do so, and that authority having been obtained, the work, accordingly, was now actually in progress towards completion. He begged to say, that in his opinion, it would have been extremely improper on the part of Mr. Blore, or any other architect, to have allowed the hon. Gentleman to go into the Palace and inspect the works while in progress, in order to find fault with them.

Mr. Robert Gordon

was very sorry that the hon. and gallant Officer had not been a Member of the Committee on this subject, as he was sure, if he had, that he would have been convinced by the oral as well as by the documentary, evidence which had been laid before them, that the plan which they decided upon, namely, the completion of the Palace, was the best one. The gallant Officer's plan was submitted to that Committee, and he must say, that all the primâ facie appearance of probability about it was such as to induce the Committee not to go further into an examination of it. Indeed, it was the unanimous opinion of the Committee that they would be only unnecessarily occupying the time of the hon. Member, if they proceeded to an oral examination of him on the subject. The Committee left the amount of the sum for the completion of the Palace to be suggested by his Majesty's Ministers, and they had suggested the amount in question—namely, 75,000l. If the hon. and gallant Gentleman would get any capitalist to buy the Palace for 400,000l., he (Mr. Gordon) was sure that his Majesty's Government would be glad to get rid of it upon such terms, and he, for one, would rejoice at seeing such a bargain effected.

Mr. Warburton

said, that the public must now content themselves with the expenditure of 700,000l. or 800,000l. on this Palace. They would not recover that money, and the only alternative for them was, to fit it for the purpose for which it was intended. All that the public got in return for that expenditure, and he was not sure, great as it was, that the benefit which accompanied it had not been well purchased, was the having St. James's-park opened at the same time, and laid out in walks for the accommodation of the citizens of this immense metropolis. In his opinion, the Government could not have done otherwise in this instance than have adopted the recommendation of the Report of the Select Committee on this sub- ject. He certainly should oppose any project for selling this Palace for 400,000l, or 500,000l., even if so much could be got for it, to any private capitalist or builder, as that might be the means of shutting up the park, which was one of the lungs of the metropolis. He would conclude these few remarks by confirming the statement of the chairman of the Committee (Mr. R. Gordon) as to what took place there in reference to the plan of the hon. member for Cambridge.

Mr. Hunt

thought, that the hon. member for Bridport had made a very extraordinary speech for one who professed himself to be an economist. He defended the wanton outlay of 700,000l. upon a Palace, because as he said, the public had got a walk for their money. It must be acknowledged, however, that it was a very costly one; besides it was said that the Palace would never be fit to be inhabited by the King, and he had even heard that his Majesty had expressed a personal objection ever to reside there. If so, their "walk" would cost still more. If the account of the unwholesomeness of the situation, which had been stated was a correct one, it was a place to which he should not send even a convict to reside, much less a king, the people ought to be satisfied that this could be made a fit residence for their monarchs, before their money was spent on a filthy hole surrounded by nuisances.

Lord Althorp

, though he did not feel it necessary to follow his hon. and gallant friend through the statement which he had made, could not avoid saying that he had not at all made out his case that there must be an additional expenditure of 700,000l. on this Palace in order to complete it. He did not think that it would be very advisable on the part of that House, or of the country, to commence the building of a new Palace. He could hardly persuade himself that it would be enonomical to do so even on the grounds stated by the hon. Gentleman. He begged to say, that, though he did not think it a wise thing in the first instance to have built a Palace in the situation of Buckingham Palace, yet when he heard so much said as to the unhealthiness of that situation, he would only remind the hon. Member that George 3rd, and Queen Charlotte resided in that very situation during the greater part of a long reign, and therefore that it could not be regarded as so unhealthy as some would describe it. He was ready to admit at the same time, as he had already said, that the place was not one that should have been originally selected for a Palace, but as the building was in a great state of forwardness towards completion, his Majesty's Government thought it right to bring the subject before the House, in order that it should decide what should be done with it. A Select Committee was accordingly appointed, and amongst the Members of that Committee were several Gentlemen who, so far from being inclined to spend the public money, had been uniformly distinguished for their anxiety to save that money as much as possible. That Committee went into a full examination of the whole case, and they reported, that after the most careful consideration that, they could give to it, it appeared to them that the best plan was, to complete the building so as to render it fit for a residence for his Majesty. Under these circumstances, the House adopted the Report of the Committee, and decided that the Palace should be completed, and having voted the sum for that purpose, the work was accordingly commenced. Now, he would ask the House whether, having gone so far, and whether having recommenced the works, they ought to retrace their steps, and commence the building of a new palace, knowing so well as they did, how little able they should be in the first instance to calculate the expense of such an undertaking. No minute of the nature of that described in the hon. Gentleman's motion, he believed existed, and he should object to the production of the other papers for which he called, on the ground that their production would be only reopening this question, so as probably to lead to great additional expense. He had already said, that he would not enter into the statements of his hon. and gallant friend, but he could not avoid observing, that his hon. and gallant friend had by no means satisfied him by the assumed statements and assumed calculations which he had brought forward, that he would be able to produce the great saving which he said he would effect if his plan were adopted.

Mr. Curteis

took that opportunity of observing that he thought the public had a right to ask of the noble Lord at the head of the Woods and Forests, or of that member of the Government who possessed the control, that the passage through St. James's Park, between Storey's-gate and the Pimlico-gate, should be left open at night. Those gates were now closed at an early hour of the evening, and the consequence was, that every person who desired to go from Pimlico to Westminster, or from Westminster to Pimlico, could only do so by a most circuitous and disagreeable route.

Lord Duncannon

begged to state that the gates to which the hon. Gentleman referred were not under his charge—they were under the control of the Ranger of the Park. He would, however, take care that the subject should be brought under his consideration, and he had no doubt but that the hon. Gentleman's wishes would be complied with.

Mr. Maurice O'Connell

was of opinion that, as we were going to have a Reformed Parliament, the question of Buckingham Palace was one that ought to be referred to it.

Sir Frederick Trench

said, that after the observations which had been made by the noble Lord, although by no means satisfied that his plan was not the best to be adopted, he should not press his motion to a division.

Motion negatived.