HC Deb 17 May 1836 vol 33 cc1030-2

Sir Andrew Leith Hay moved for leave to bring in a Bill for the purpose of establishing Town Councils in certain burghs of barony, royalty, and others, in Scotland, not Royal or Parliamentary burghs. It was a measure, he said, of which the advantage to large towns would be admitted by all persons acquainted with Scotland. At present those towns had no jurisdiction over their own expenditure in the way of paving, lighting, &c, and the consequence was, that many things connected with local government were totally neglected. The object of the proposed Bill was, to remedy these defects, and give them the means of providing against the disposal of general funds being at the will of an individual. He would not now enter into details of the measure, but merely content himself with stating that the intention of the Bill was to enable these towns to elect Magistrates who would have the direction and control of local arrangements.

Sir George Clerk

hoped that the Bill would not be compulsory, but would leave it to the option of the inhabitants of those towns whether or not they should go to the expense of providing themselves with municipal bodies. He made this observation because he was aware of objections being made to the establishment of Corporations in many towns in Scotland, which dreaded the burdens that might be consequent thereon.

Leave was given to bring in the Bill.