HC Deb 16 February 1843 vol 66 cc698-9
Mr. Milner Gibson

seeing the Secretary of State for the Home Department in his place, was desirous to obtain from him some explanation of a statement made by him last night. The right hon. Gentleman had referred to the factory report of Mr. Horner for 1842, and had stated, that during the year, forty-nine new mills had been built and brought into operation in that gentleman's district. What he wanted was an explanation of the term "new mills." Did the right hon. Gentleman mean to say that forty-nine new mills had been added to those previously existing.

Sir James Graham

said, although the hon. Gentleman had given him no notice of the question, he was prepared to answer it. He had used the precise expression contained in Mr. Horner's report, which referred to mills that had been out of employ, or working short time.

Mr. Milner Gibson

was not satisfied with the explanation. It was sometimes necessary that an explanation should be explained. Was he to understand under the expression "new mills" new constructions, or was he merely to understand concerns that had changed hands? If a man sold his mill, and a new tenant came into possession, was that mill a new mill?

Sir James Graham

certainly thought that a new mill generally meant a new construction, but the expression as used by Mr. Horner, appeared to include mills that had formerly been out of employment.

Mr. Milner Gibson:

If in consequence of a bankruptcy a mill were sold, and passed into the hands of a new person, would the right hon. Baronet call that new person a new mill?

Sir James Graham:

I can answer this question with greater ease than any of the preceding ones. I should certainly not call a person entering on a new concern a new mill.

Mr. G. W. Wood

begged to ask the right hon. Baronet whether the report of Mr. Horner would be laid before the House before the close of the present debate, on the motion of the noble Lord the Member for Sunderland?

Sir James Graham

had hoped the debate would have closed this evening; but if it was to be continued in the spirit in which it had hitherto proceeded, it might be carried over to the end of next week. In that case, he could promise the House they should be in possession of Mr. Horner's report before the close of the debate.