HC Deb 02 March 1837 vol 36 cc1196-8
Mr. Mackinnon

rose to move the re-appointment of the Committee on turnpike tolls and trusts, for the purpose of considering such legislative enactments as ought to be recommended on the subject. It would, in his estimation, and in that of the Committee generally (which sat last year), be most desirable to maintain the various turnpike roads throughout the country by a house rate equitably levied, and carefully appropriated, so as to secure a cheap and satisfactory mode of communication. The object which he sought to attain by the re-appointment of the Committee was to submit to their consideration a measure similar in principle to that which he had brought forward during the administration of the right hon. Gentleman, the Member for Tamworth, for the purpose of consolidating their trusts in the management and outlay; but differing from it in this respect—that instead of a central board in London, he would propose the establishment of such boards in the different country towns, under the management either of Commissioners, or of the courts of quarter sessions; so that no new turnpike act would be enabled to pass without, in the first instance, receiving their sanction: bills promoted by local boards of this description would be infinitely more palatable to the country generally than bills for similar purposes emanating from a central board, managed by the Under Secretary of State, and influenced immediately as would be universally supposed, by his Majesty's Ministers. The hon. Gentleman concluded by moving the re-appointment of the Committee.

Mr. Fox Maule

was not disposed to accede to the hon. Gentleman's motion. He should have no objection to the renewal of the Committee, if the hon. Gentleman proposed to extend its labours to Ireland and Scotland. Upon the single branch of the inquiry to which their labours had been hitherto directed (he alluded to the turnpike trusts in England) they had already completed their report. He had no objection to the hon. Gentleman bringing forward the measure upon this subject to which he had alluded, and should be happy to give to it his most attentive consideration; but he did not at the same time think that there was any necessity for reappointing the Committee. With reference to turnpike trusts generally, he would observe, that the necessity for consolidation, strict economy of outlay, publicity of the accounts, and abolition of useless offices, was becoming every day more strikingly apparent.

The Chancellor of the Exchequer

said, that no intention whatever existed upon the part of Government to throw any impediment in the way of the hon. Gentleman, the Member for Lymington. He would suggest to that hon. Member to bring in his Bill, which could subsequently, if necessary, be referred for consideration to the re-appointed Committee.

Motion withdrawn.