HC Deb 09 June 1841 vol 58 cc1375-6

On the motion of Mr. J. Stewart, the Charitable Trusts Bill was read a third time, and several amendments made.

Sir E. Sugden

objected to a clause which had been added on the recommitment of the bill, which suggested the existence of doubts as to the individuals in whom the estates of charitable trusts were legally vested. By the English Reform Act they were distinctly vested in the corporations. The name of the Attorney-general was endorsed on this bill; and he charged the hon. and learned Gentleman with endeavouring, by a side wind, to effect an object which was not within the purview of the bill. He begged to move the omission of the clause.

The Attorney-General

considered that the clause to which the right hon. and learned Gentleman objected was a satisfactory one, and ought to be retained. It appeared that his right hon. Friend did not oppose the clause itself, but objected to the mode in which it had been introduced. The bill before the House related to charity trusts estates. The question was, whether the provision which was now opposed came within the scope of the bill, or was introduced clandestinely. The hon. Member knew that the clause was to be introduced. The bill was repeatedly printed. Ample opportunity was afforded the right hon. Member, if he had been disposed, to offer any opposition to the clause. He would explain shortly to the House the purport of the clause. When the Municipal Corporation Bill was under discussion it was thought expedient to retain what was termed the legal estates in the members of the old corporation up to a certain period, but no provision was made what should be done after that day. The period had elapsed, and nothing had been done. It was time that Parliament should legislate on the subject. It was stated by his right hon. Friend, that he doubted in whom the legal estates were now vested; but he (the At- torney-general) entertained considerable doubts on that point. Many eminent lawyers, including the Lord Chancellor, agreed in these doubts. He considered the clause highly beneficial, and hoped his right hon. and learned Friend would withdraw his opposition to it.

Sir E. Knatchbull

thought that the clause did not come within the general scope of the bill, and ought to form the subject of a distinct measure. That was the first time the clause had come under the notice of the House, and he hoped the motion of his right hon. and learned friend would be acceded to.

Mr. J. Stewart

denied that the clause had been introduced without due notice. The right hon. and learned Gentleman had ample opportunity afforded him to make himself acquainted with the nature of the clause. The clause was of great importance. He had received several petitions from Bristol and Bridgewater, calling his attention to the difficulties which this clause was intended to obviate. The subject was also mentioned to him by several gentlemen of great legal attainments and experience connected with the Court of Chancery, who all approved of the propriety and necessity of a clause of that kind. He repudiated the charge of the right hon. and learned Gentleman, that the clause was smuggled into the bill. He thought that, under the circumstances of the case, he and others, who supported the bill, were not open to such an imputation. The bill was one in which he took a great interest, and, considering it would have a most beneficial tendency, he hoped the House would reject the amendment, and allow the bill to be read a third time.

The House divided on the question, that the words proposed to be left out stand part of the bill:—Ayes 35; Noes 30:—Majority 5.

List of the AYES.
Briscoe, J. I. Hume, J.
Brotherton, J. Humphery, J.
Buller, Sir J. Y. Labouchere, rt. hn.H.
Busfeild, W. Lambton, H.
Clay, W. Lynch, A. H.
Collier, J. Macaulay, rt. hn. T. B.
Duncombe, T. Maule, hon. F.
Ferguson, Sir R. A. Muntz, G. F.
Greg, R. H. O'Brien, W. S.
Grey, rt. hon. Sir C. Philips, M.
Heathcoat, J. Scholefield, J.
Hector, C. J. Stansfield, W. R. C.
Hobhouse, T. B. Stuart, W. V.
Howard, P. H. Thornely, T.
Turner, E. Wilde, Sir T.
Villiers, hn. C. P. Williams, W.
Wakley, T. TELLERS.
Warburton, H. Attorney General
Wemyss, Captain Stewart, J.
List of the NOES.
Arbuthnott, hn. H. Lindsay, H. H.
Bagge, W. Lockhart, A. M.
Bailey, J. Mackenzie, T.
Baldwin, C. B. Pakington, J. S.
Bramston, T. W. Palmer, G.
Bruce, C. L. C. Parker, R. T.
Clerk, Sir G. Plumptre, J. P.
Cresswell, C. Rae, rt. hn. Sir W.
Drummond, H. H. Round, J.
Dugdale, W. S. Sibthorp, Colonel
Filmer, Sir E. Thesiger, F.
Freshfield, J. W. Veinon, G. H.
Gaskell, J. Milnes Wilbraham, hon. B.
Goring, H. D.
Grimsditch, T. TELLERS.
Hepburn, Sir T. B. Knatchbull, Sir E.
Hodgson, R. Sugden, Sir E.

Bill passed.