HC Deb 20 June 1845 vol 81 cc972-99
Lord Ingestre,

in rising to move the reception of the Report on the Oxford, Worcester, and Wolverhampton Railway Bill, said that he had given the comparative merits of the broad and narrow gauges his best consideration; and he had no hesitation in giving his opinion that the former was the best. The matter was one of national interest, and also of local interest to the county which he represented; and on both accounts he considered the broad gauge was the preferable one of the two. The House also should be cautious how they upset the verdict of a Committee of that House. He would move at once that the Report of the Committee on the Oxford, Worcester, and Wolverhampton Railway Bill be brought up.

Report brought up. On the Motion that the Amendments made by the Committee be read a second time,

Mr. Cobden

rose to move, as an Amendment to the Motion of the noble Lord— That an humble Address be presented to Her Majesty, to issue a Commission to inquire whether, in all future Acts for the construction of Railways, provision ought to be made for securing one uniform gauge, and whether it would be practicable and expedient to bring existing Lines of Railway in Great Britain, and Lines now in course of construction, into uniformity of gauge; and, if so, to report upon the best mode of carrying these objects into effect in the present Session of Parliament. He said, this was not merely a question of a particular line; it involved an important principle. They could not disguise the fact, that out of the House the proceedings of that night were looked to with great anxiety; and the crowded state of the benches within showed that the House itself looked upon it as nothing less than a national question. It was a most important question, and ought not to be decided rashly, or without due deliberation. This was, perhaps, the most important question that had yet arisen in the course of railway legislation, and of the greatest national importance. They had fallen into a great error, in railway legislation, in not laying down a proper system for the regulation of railways. It was, however, a remarkable fact, that in the early stage of railways they took steps to secure an uniformity of gauge. In the London and Birmingham, and in the Grand Junction Railway Bills, clauses were introduced providing that the gauges should be uniform. But when railway communication was extended into the south of England, this principle was departed from, and a different gauge adopted. There were two questions involved in this subject. First, the prevention of injury to the passengers and traffic from the want of uniformity in the gauge; and, second, the possibility of bringing the existing lines of railway into one uniform system. They were all, he was sure, agreed on the necessity of having only one gauge. There could be none but what admitted that two gauges were mischievous. They produced the greatest inconvenience to passengers and traffic, and would interfere with the traffic going forward in all parts of the country, unless steps were taken to avert the evil. In the Midland Counties, in Oxfordshire, Worcester, Warwickshire, and Gloucestershire, there was a war on the subject of the gauges at present raging. Now, in those counties there was yet a vast area not supplied by railways; and it was here that the battle was going forward—the London and Birmingham, and the Great Western Companies contending which should occupy the vacant space. It was, therefore, a most important question, which should be discussed substantively, and not be decided by a side-wind during the progress of a particular Bill. The war would go forward, gathering strength, unless they stepped in and settled the question. Not only in the Midland Counties was the contest going forward, but it was extending itself to Somersetshire, Wiltshire, and Dorsetshire, where as yet railways had made but slight progress. Well, now they had projects for new lines in connexion with the Great Western. There was a line from Southampton to Salisbury, which was nearly completed, and there was another from Bath to Bristol. But if these lines should be completed according to the present plan, the inconvenience would arise of transhipment from the Salisbury line to get on to the Bath line; and that was a monstrous evil. In Dorsetshire it was the same; and he understood that a line now about to be made in Wales would cause a like inconvenience, by reason of the narrow and broad gauges coming in contact. For these reasons, he did think there could not be a second opinion as to the necessity of having a uniform gauge. He knew there were some hon. Members in the House who would go so far as to argue that it was no inconvenience to tranship goods from one line of carriages to another; but, surely, it would not for a moment be argued that it was no inconvenience to remove loads of coals, or droves of cattle, from one train of carriages to another. He believed that a greater annoyance or inconvenience could not be conceived. Well, then, that fact being admitted, the question lay between the broad and narrow gauges; and let him call attention to the fact, that the narrow gauge was the first one on which railways were constructed; and at the present moment there were more railways constructed upon the narrow than on the broad gauge, while the projected lines were ten to one in favour of the narrow gauge. He believed the proportion of railways constructed to be 1,000 miles broad gauge, and 3,000 narrow gauge. On these grounds alone, he did think the narrow gauge should have the first consideration. What were the objections to the narrow gauge? They were not in a position now to delay the question between them; and even if there were a preponderance of utility of the broad over the narrow gauge, they were not, he repeated, in a position to defer the settlement of this question. But what was the objection to the narrow gauge? It had existed in this country for fifteen years. It was general throughout America, and there the width of the rails, instead of being as in this country, four feet eight and a half inches, was but four feet six inches. It was common in France, in Belgium, and, he might say, over the Continent, with the single exception of Russia. Well, then, they had ample experience on the subject. There had been no accident, he believed, that could be really attributed to the narrowness of the gauge. They had had experience of its use, and its spread was so extensive, that they were not now in a position to interfere with it. If, at this time, they were attempting to conform their narrow to their broad gauges, they would require to alter their tunnels, their viaducts, their embankments, and, perhaps, most difficult of all, their bridges, and that, in some cases, would be altogether impossible. They might; come to this House for power to do so. But if the broad gauge were made conformatory to the narrow gauge, it would be most expedient. This would require no alteration of tunnels, of viaducts, of embankments, or of bridges; nothing would be required but an alteration of the rails and carriages. Well, this, he said, was the proper time to legislate upon the subject. He was aware that it would be a hard matter to interfere by a legislative enactment to compel the Great Western Railway to conform to the narrow gauge. But he contended that the evil would be less felt at that time than at any future period. They were now going on constructing railways, and they would in all probability live to see railways wherever turnpike roads at present existed. The railway combined the advantages of turnpike roads and canals; the expense of transit was less, and they were still going on improving the construction of them. They were five times as speedy as the one, and ten times as speedy as the other. They did not now experience the difficulties which had attended the construction of the Liverpool and Manchester Railway. Could there be any doubt, then, that soon they would have railways over all parts of the country, and were they to risk the inconvenience of these rival gauges without endeavouring to find some means of remedying the evil? He was sure that, looking at the subject, the House would say, and he agreed in the opinion, that the Report of the Committee should not be lightly set aside; and it would only be on a subject of such paramount importance that he should ask the House to reverse the decision of the Committee. But this was a question which must be met soon, and he was anxious that the House should meet it on the present occasion. He was sure that no hon. Member would reproach the Committee for the decision to which they had come; and he would say that the Committees as now constituted (and he knew, for he had sat on one for a month past), approached as nearly, as regarded probity, to perfection as they possibly could do. He did not mean to impugn the decision of the Committee. His object was not to inquire into the reason which had moved them to their decision; but still, on the grounds of an impartial consideration of the public interests, he thought, that the decision might be reviewed by the House, and their Resolution altered, without an infringement of the respect that was due to the Committee. He was ready to allow that their decision would be, whether the House were to blindly follow the Committee's decision, or take into consideration the evidence which had enabled the Committee to come at their conclusions for the guidance of the House. This was a matter of importance; for the question was, not whether a present convenience or inconvenience was to be satisfied, but how they were to provide for the welfare of future generations? The hon. Member concluded by submitting his Motion.

Colonel Wood,

in seconding the Motion, said, that, although he did not often agree in opnion with the hon. Member for Stockport, he had great pleasure in supporting his views on the present occasion. This was a question on which all parties might amicably meet. It was neutral ground, on which they were prepared to state their opinions; but having examined the elements on which the Committee had founded their Report, he hoped that he was not transgressing his usual principle in opposing the decision which had been laid before the House. In doing this he would impress on the Committee that he intended no disrespect in seconding the Motion of the hon. Member opposite. But there were other reasons why he should ask for a consideration, or, rather, a reconsideration of this Motion. The five Gentlemen on this Committee had refused their adherence to the recommendation of the Board of Trade, which was in conformity with the side of the question he had taken. The five Gentlemen of that, Committee had stated their reasons for preferring the broad gauge to the narrow gauge. The Committee had taken an interest in this question which was highly creditable to them; but they had not calculated on the interest which it was likely to excite in others who were Members of that House. It was true, that they had considered the inconvenience of the narrow gauge, and an immense amount of time and money had been expended in endeavouring to ascertain the respective merits of the two gauges; but it appeared to him that the Committee had come to their decision, and determined between the two gauges from strong ex-parle reasons. The future was, however, so full of importance that he thought they might well review their decision; and the judgment of the Board of Trade was so important that it ought not to be set aside without sufficient consideration. He thought, therefore, that the House were interested in the fact, that their Report had been made, and that it ought, in some degree, at least, to be relied on. The Committee had reported that the broad gauge was preferable to the narrow gauge. The Board of Trade was in favour of the narrow gauge. There were many reasons which perhaps might be urged in favour of both lines. He was quite satisfied, as far as speed and the saving of time was concerned, the broad gauge was preferable. In the conveyance of some kinds of traffic, however, speed was not the principal object to be attained. For instance, coals would not have a very swift transmission, and in this instance the broad gauge would be objectionable, as the rapidity of the motion would tend to chip the coal, and break it into small pieces, and spoil it for a profitable market. Another article of traffic that would be injured by a speedy motion was limestone. This would not bear rapid motion. There were many points on which the narrow gauge was superior to the broad gauge; and again, in some instances, the broad was preferable to the narrow gauge. He entirely approved of the appointment of a Commission of Inquiry.

Mr. Shaw

said, as Chairman of the Committee whose Report was then under consideration, he felt called upon to make a few observations. He would rather have reserved himself until he should have heard all the objections taken to the decision or Report of the Committee; but he observed such an unusually large attendance of Members, that he could not but suspect that some of them were not very thoroughly acquainted with the merits of the question upon which they were about to vote; and he would, therefore, take that early opportunity of briefly stating to the House what the Committee had done, and also what he considered of almost more importance in the present instance—what the Committee were erroneously supposed to have done, but what they, in fact, had not done. To take the latter first; great excitement prevailed out of doors with reference to the question of the broad and narrow gauges, and it was imagined that the decision of the Committee turned upon the relative merits of the two gauges; but it was no such thing—they had carefully abstained from even intimating an opinion upon that point. It was unnecessary, and he thought would therefore have been un- wise to have done so; and, had it been necessary, would have been extremely difficult; for not only did no two of the engineers examined agree upon which was the best narrow, or which the best broad gauge, but not even one—though he, as Chairman, asked the question of every engineer examined — not one engineer would commit himself to a positive opinion what would now be the best width of gauge to adopt generally for the whole country, supposing the matter was res integra, and that it was possible to have one general uniform gauge. The hon. Member for Stockport (Mr. Cobden) had a Notice on the Paper for a Select Committee of the House, to inquire and report upon that question. He confessed that he was surprised to find that evening, that the hon. Member had moved it as an Amendment to the present Bill. The hon. Member was more simple-minded than he could pretend to be, in supposing that the large attendance of Members present was on national grounds, and on account of the public interest involved in establishing one general uniform width of gauge for the entire kingdom. He feared the hon. Member would subject himself to some suspicion likewise of other than a public and national object, when he brought forward a Motion that might very fairly be considered in that light, if submitted to the House in a substantive form, as a question of general interest, and as such deserving the consideration of the House upon its own merits; but which was most unreasonable to use as a side-wind, by which to upset a particular measure essentially belonging to the department of Private Business, and when a private party, at the cost of thousands—or, more probably, tens of thousands—of pounds, had brought the Bill to a forward stage, there to stop it; and, as it were, at the expense of that private party, institute an inquiry for the public good. He was persuaded the House would never sanction such a course. Have a public inquiry on public grounds, if the House thought fit; but do not suffer it to be by way; of obstruction to private interests. He believed, from the evidence given before the Committee, that the subject had not yet been sufficiently tested by experience to enable even a Select Committee of the House, appointed for that sole purpose, to come to a satisfactory conclusion what the uniform gauge ought to be, although it would be easy to decide what was obvious—that a uniformity of gauge, if practicable, would be convenient and desirable. He believed that the preponderance of evidence would be, that the four-feet eight and a half inch gauge was rather narrower, and the seven feet wider than what should be established; but, as fluctuating between those two breadths, that the greatest difficulty would be experienced in fixing one uniform gauge. Upon that subject the House would find an interesting correspondence of General Pasley—published last year amongst the Papers of the House—from which it might be collected that a gauge between five feet and five feet six inches was the most recommended. That was, however, for such a Committee, if the House should grant it independently of that Bill, as was proposed by the hon. Member; but the particular Railway Committee over which he had presided had not to do with that abstract question, but their duty was practically to deal with the existing state of things—and that was, that two large portions of the kingdom were occupied one by the narrow, the other by the broad gauge, in the proportion of—between railways made and in progress, in round numbers, about 3,000 miles on the narrow, and 1,000 on the broad gauge. The Committee could act upon no such absurd speculation as that one or other of these great systems should be broken up in order to produce uniformity—and even then the remaining gauge would, probably, not be the best. Or again, it was urged that the broad gauge should not be allowed up into the narrow gauge territory; but then, to be just, if the Committee said that, on the one hand, they must say on the other, that the narrow should not be allowed to go down into the territory of the broad—the practical effect of which would be, that a large district of country lying intermediate between the London and Birmingham line on the north, and the Great Western on the south, must be left without railway communication at all; but the Committee agreed with the Board of Trade in thinking that that district was entitled to railway communication. There were for the purpose of supplying such communication two sets of schemes or competing lines proposed—one by the London and Birmingham Company, on the narrow gauge; another by the Great Western, on the broad. The Committee decided between these two competing lines upon a full consideration of their relative merits; but were not influenced by any opinion of the relative merits of the two different gauges upon which they happened to be. They assumed both companies to be equally worthy, and either gauge to be sufficiently applicable for all the practical purposes of the proposed lines. They did not overlook the inconvenience of a change or break of gauge; wherever it should occur, but they felt it must occur somewhere, and they found by the evidence laid before them, a considerable portion of which on that point consisted of new facts that could not have been before the Board of Trade, that the amount of the inconvenience of the break of gauge would be much less, and the remedies for meeting it where it must exist more effectual, than had been anticipated by the Board of Trade. For example, the Board of Trade assumed, in the fourth page of their Report, that if the Great Western line were approved, the Birmingham and Gloucester railway must necessarily adopt the broad gauge from Gloucester to Birmingham; but since then that railway, as well as the Gloucester and Bristol, had fallen into hands which would prevent any such consequence; and, on the contrary, insure a narrow gauge railway from Birmingham to Bristol in any event, thereby securing an unbroken narrow gauge for all the northern traffic to the great shipping port of Bristol—one of the principal arguments set forth in the Board of Trade Report in favour of the London and Birmingham scheme. Again, it was not then contemplated, but since had been determined by the Great Western Company, to lay down two lines, one on the broad and another on the narrow gauge, from Worcester to Wolverhampton, thus affording that district, which included the iron and coal-fields of South Staffordshire, an uninterrupted gauge each way to the north by the narrow, and to the south by the broad gauge. The amount of break of gauge was therefore considerably reduced, and where it must occur, mechanical contrivances were proved to have been constructed which would greatly diminish the evil; but the proof of which there had been no opportunity of submitting to the Board of Trade. He had, then, shown that the opinion of the Committee had in no degree been founded on the relative merits of the two gauges, and that due consideration had been bestowed upon the inconvenience of the interruption of gauge wherever it took place. But the decision of the Committee was mainly influenced by other and larger considerations. The first was, the manifest superiority as a line of communication, of the railway the Committee reported in favour of, over the one they reported against. It was impossible to look at the map without seeing it. The one led directly from point to point, saving between the two principal towns of the district—Worcester and Oxford—a distance of fifteen miles. The other was indirect, circuitous, and between these two points that much longer. The Great Western line was the first in the field, put forward with the bonâ fide view of drawing new traffic to their main trunk line, and which, therefore, it would be always their interest to work efficiently. The London and Birmingham line was evidently drawn forth as a defensive scheme; and, without imputing to either less of public spirit than animated the other, it would obviously be less the private interest of the London and Birmingham Company to work their line efficiently, because it would be rather drawing off traffic than bringing it to their main trunk. Another very important consideration was the public advantage on the ground of competition. He was aware that the principle of competition was somewhat different in its application to railways and to ordinary subjects; and that therefore regulation had necessarily, in many cases of railways, to be substituted for competition. He believed that what was in railway phraseology termed "side by side" competition, generally ended in a compromise between the parties, at the expense of the public—but still he would maintain that a wholesome and salutary competition might in many cases be obtained, even in the case of railways, and greatly for the benefit of the public; and such, he thought, would be the result of the line then under consideration. It had appeared in evidence before them, that in reference to the great and important communication between London and Liverpool, the London and Birmingham Company had in progress arrangements for giving them a line from Rugby to Liverpool, independently of the Grand Junction Railway, which he considered a public advantage; and the present line would afford a line, if necessary, for the Grand Junction Railway from Wolverhampton to London, independent of the London and Birmingham. Moreover, to the most important district traversed by the proposed lines—namely, that between Worcester and Wolverhampton, the scheme approved by the Committee would supply two communications by separate lines, and in the hands of great independent companies—to London, particularly when the proposed branch should be made from Dudley to Birmingham. He had thus endeavoured very briefly, as compared with the length of the proceedings before the Committee, and he was conscious very imperfectly, to put before the House a few of the principal grounds upon which the decision of the Committee rested; and before he sat down, seeing the great number of hon. Members in attendance who were about to vote on a case, the merits of which they could comparatively have had but little means of being acquainted with, he begged to state to the House the time and pains the Committee over which he presided had devoted to it. They had sat twenty-five days; had examined more than 100 witnesses; had heard counsel at great length—particularly on the part of the unsuccessful company, as that side had had the opening and general reply. The Committee had themselves given to the case the most unremitting attention; and when it closed had separated without even communicating their individual opinions to each other. On the night before they met to confer upon their decision, he, as chairman, had written out the various points upon which he thought the evidence bore favourably, and unfavourably, and his opinion upon them. Another Member of the Committee had done the same, even at greater length than himself, all had done so more or less. Besides, having taken copious notes of the evidence while the witnesses were under examination, and having met the next morning, they read over their papers, compared their several views, and after two hours' consultation, came to an unanimous decision in favour of the Bill then before the House. Nevertheless, he had no overweening confidence in the correctness of their decision. The entire Committee had felt the painful responsibility imposed upon them in having to decide for one, and necessarily against the other, of the two great interests involved in the question submitted to them. His hon. Friend the Member for Brecon (Colonel Wood) seemed to think that the five Members of the Board of Trade, and the five Members of the Committee stood on equal footing, and the authority of the one balanced that of the other. The Committee had differed with great deference and regret from the Report of the Board of Trade, after having given to every point contained in it their most serious attention; but it was to be recollected that the opinion of the Board of Trade was of necessity but a preliminary one — formed without the advantage of vivâ voce witnesses, cross-examination, or the aid of opposing counsel, all which the Committee had enjoyed. He was persuaded, that upon the materials before the Board of Trade, the Committee would have come to the same conclusion as the Board of Trade; and, that if the Board of Trade had had the benefit of hearing the whole case in the manner it was brought before the Committee, the Board of Trade would have arrived at the same conclusion as the Committee. Personally, he should feel gratified, as he always did in any case of importance, that his judgment should be revised by any competent tribunal; and if any Member of the Board of Trade, or of the Government, or any hon. Gentleman of experience on either side of the House, and unconnected with either of the contending parties, would suggest any such tribunal—say a Select Committee of ten, instead of five, or chosen in any manner that would insure its competency and give weight to its authority—to that he would not offer one word of objection. But, with all respect for the collective wisdom of that House, he must say, that if a solemn decision of a Committee of impartial men, selected for the purpose, and having for five weeks given their diligent and careful consideration to all the details of the case, was to be set aside by means of a private and interested canvass—or the accident of which of the two great opposing companies might have the greater number of personal friends in the House—he would protest—not on behalf of the Committee, for it was nothing to them, but for the credit and character of the House itself, and on the part of the vast public, private, and pecuniary interests involved in the just decision of these questions—against such an act. It might be, and it had forcibly struck him during the progress of that very case, that the duty was perhaps too onerous even for a Select Committee; but sure he was of this, that if the labours of those special Committees were to be controlled, and their decisions nullified by votes of that House, influenced by personal canvass and private interests, then the sooner the jurisdiction was transferred to some more competent tribunal, the better it would be for the honour of the House and the interests of the country.

Mr. Labouchere

observed, that although he could not say his constituents had any interest in this question, still he was himself very anxious to see a proper decision come to, as he believed it would affect the character of the House itself, and have a very important bearing upon the general interests of the country. He had heard the debate of to-night called "the battle of the gauges;" but he believed it to be a battle between two great, rival railway companies, who, by canvassing for the last few weeks, had mustered their forces on the present occasion. He had watched during the present Session of Parliament, with peculiar anxiety, the progress of railway proceedings, because he was most anxious that that fever of gambling which prevailed among the public of late, should be stayed as much as possible. There was but one way in which that system could be successfully opposed by that House; which was, that they should adhere, as strictly as might be, to those Rules of the House which, with especial care, had been formed upon the most impartial principles. He acknowledged, therefore, that he approached this question with a very strong bias to support the decision of the Select Committee. The question before the House was, whether they should stop the further progress of the Bill which was then before them. In his opinion there was no pretence for doing it. The right hon. and learned Gentleman the Chairman of the Committee, had distinctly told them that the question raised before the Committee was not as to the width of the gauge, but as to the line of railway to be taken. Upon that question—that of the line—it was utterly impossible for the House to come to any decision, because they had not the means of forming any opinion. It depended upon a thousand circumstances which it was impossible for the House to have any cognizance of. The House on such a question invariably gave its vote exclusively upon the confidence they reposed in the Gentlemen who constituted the Committee. The Committee in this instance had decided contrary to the Report of the Board of Trade. He was desirous of speaking without any disrespect of the Board of Trade. But when a Committee had investigated the merits of a case on which the Board of Trade had made a Report, and had come, after a full consideration, to a different conclusion from that of the Board of Trade, it was not a sufficient ground alone for the House to question the propriety and judgment of the Committee. Upon these grounds it was his intention to vole for the further progress of the Oxford, Worcester, and Wolverhampton Bill. At the same time, he must own that after hearing the speech of the right hon. Gentleman (Mr. Shaw), he was not prepared to deny that there were some special circumstances which might require special consideration. The right hon. Gentleman had told the House that the question of the gauges was not one which the Committee thought it necessary to go into; but this might, nevertheless, really be a very important question to investigate. Again, the Committee appeared to have asserted a principle which was entirely new—namely, that the line should be constructed both on a narrow and broad gauge. He knew not how far that principle might be right or not; but these were no reasons for stopping the Bill. All this could be fully met by introducing an additional clause, before the third reading, to render it obligatory upon the company to lay down either a broad or narrow gauge, or both, as by competent authority should be thought necessary. He hoped before this discussion closed, the House would hear the views of Her Majesty's Government upon the subject. Should the solemn Report of a Committee of that House be defeated by a system of canvassing the votes of the Members, who could not be supposed to have made themselves conversant with the merits of the case, it weuld be a great blow to the authority of an impartial tribunal of that House. It would encourage powerful parties by this system of canvass to induce Members to come down to the House to vote upon a subject upon which they could not be competent to form an opinion.

Mr. Bernal

was sorry that all the speaking seemed to be on one side. No one appeared disposed to controvert what had been laid down by the right hon. and learned Gentleman the Chairman of the Committee. He thought the right hon. Baronet the Home Secretary was bound by every principle and every argument to support the Select Committee. These new tribunals were mere playthings, or they were serious tribunals. If the Amendment were agreed to, the consequence would be, that before the Royal Commission could make a Report, the Session would be at an end, and all further progress with the Bills now pending would be stopped till next year. It was highly necessary on every account that this question should be immediately decided. It had given rise to a great deal of speculation. In Capel-court, in the City, there was yesterday great speculation, going on as to the result of this night's debate, and a most enormous amount of money was pending as to the broad or narrow gauge being adopted. If they did not prevent that delay upon which parties were calculating, much greater mischief would inevitably ensue. He entreated the House, therefore, not to delay their decision upon the Bill; but to accept the Report, and throw no difficulty in the way of passing this measure. The right hon. Gentleman the Chairman of the Committee had said that the Committee did not attach much importance to the question whether the narrow or the broad gauge should be adopted. He begged to call the right hon. Gentleman's attention to the opinion expressed by Mr. Walker, an eminent engineer, on the subject. That gentleman said that if he had to choose as to what should be done, the whole narrow gauge should be uprooted throughout the Empire, and the broad gauge should be adopted. It had been argued that the practice on the Continent was in favour of the London and Birmingham Railway; but it was notorious that the narrow gauge was not universally adopted on the Continent. This was a fact which ought not to be concealed. But whatever the House chose to do, he begged of them, if they valued their characters for honour and for integrity, not to expose themselves to those invidious remarks which indeed had already been made. It had been said that, although this was not a question of national importance, but one of a private nature, yet a vast number of Members came down to the House, evidently having been personally canvassed to do so. Had not many hon. Gentlemen received letters upon letters upon this subject? It was a contest, in fact, between the London and Birmingham Railway Company and the Great Western Railway Company. Under these circumstances, he called upon the House, and more especially upon the right hon. Gentleman at the head of the Government, to support the decision of the tribunal appointed by the House itself.

Sir G. Grey

would not discuss the merits of this Bill, because he was perfectly satisfied with the decision of the Committee as to the merits of the two lines; but there were some peculiar circumstances connected with this question which might be properly brought before the House. It would be most unwise to subject the decision of a Committee which had received the confidence of the House, to the uncertain result of an active canvass out of doors. But there were peculiar circumstances attending the case, and he therefore hoped that the Government would express their opinion upon it. The point he alluded to, independently of the general questions which came before the Select Committee, was this—that there was a difference between the Report of the Committee and the Report of the Board of Trade, with respect to a question of competition pending between the London and Birmingham Railway and the Great Western Railway. They stated, what he trusted was the fact, that the London and Birmingham Company had made an arrangement with the Grand Junction, Manchester, and Liverpool Company; and the Committee stated their opinion to be, and in which opinion he (Sir G. Grey) concurred, that it was desirable that there should be another competing line, on the part of the Great Western Company, from Liverpool to London. This was the Report of the Committee. But the Board of Trade reported in favour of a line which would prevent any such competing line being formed. He thought the House was entitled to know whether Her Majesty's Government concurred in the opinion expressed by the Board of Trade, or whether the additional facts which had been laid before the Committee, tending to modify the opinion of the Board, would prevent them from supporting the Report of the Board. If the Board of Trade, after having looked at the evidence laid before the Committee, were still of the opinion they had already expressed, then he thought the House would be entitled, not to stop the Bill, but to adopt the suggestion of his right hon. Friend near him, and institute some further inquiry. At all events, the House ought to know what was the present opinion of the Board of Trade upon this great conflicting question.

Sir G. Clerk

said, that after the appeal of the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Devonport, he could not allow the debate to close without saying a few words. He quite agreed in the necessity of attaching importance to the decisions of the Committees of that House, constituted as they now were. He admitted that the Railway Committees had discharged their arduous duties with the greatest assiduity and attention, and he also agreed that it was only under special circumstances that that House ought to interfere with their decisions. But here was a case where those special circumstances were acknowledged to exist, involving, too, a question of great public importance; not merely a question of convenience or expense, but of public safety. The question was not as if they were now about to settle for the first time which was the best gauge. Whatever might become of the hon. Member for Stockport's Motion, that question was already decided. Looking to the enormous outlay which had been already incurred by the railways of both broad and narrow gauges, it would be hardly possible for Parliament, whatever inconvenience might arise from the want of one uniform gauge, to compel the proprietors of the existing lines to give up one gauge and adopt the other, or, as had been recommended, to give up both and adopt an intermediate gauge. What he thought they were to look to was, whether, respecting a particular district, it was most for the public convenience to introduce one or other of the present, gauges. His right hon. Friend the Recorder of Dublin would give no opinion as to whether the wide or narrow gauge was the best; but by voting the preamble of this Bill, they practically decided that question. The hon. Member for Stockport had told them that an immensity of traffic would be carried on in the triangular space between London, Liverpool, and Bristol; and that one uniform system was therefore requisite within that space, as yet unsupplied with railways. He certainly agreed with the hon. Gentleman, that the inconvenience of breaking the gauge would be almost incalculable in a district where there was much traffic; and for that reason he adhered to the opinion of the Board of Trade. Indeed, it was upon that ground that the Board of Trade—looking to the traffic likely to arise in South Staffordshire and Worcestershire, and seeing that four-fifths of that traffic would come from the north, and terminate at or before arriving at Bristol—it was upon that ground they came to the conclusion that it would be impolitic to run the wide gauge into those counties. It was of the greatest importance that that gauge which was likely to be attended with the least, amount of inconvenience and delay, should be adopted in those districts. Now, of the traffic which would pass through them from the midland counties, and the north of England seaports, to the south of England, he would undertake to say nine-tenths would terminate at Bristol. To have a different gauge south of Bristol, therefore, would be attended with no more inconvenience than having one gauge at Euston Square, and another at Paddington. By far the greater quantity of goods arriving at Bristol, came there for distribution and shipping. His right hon. Friend had said, that new facts had been laid before the Committee, which the Board of Trade had not taken into consideration. But, in answer to that, he could assure the House that no question had been more deeply or carefully considered by the Board of Trade than this very question of the gauge; and that all the facts connected with it had been laid before them. The promoters of the Oxford, Worcester, and Wolverhampton scheme had been frequently with the Board of Trade; and the inconvenience had been pointed out which must necessarily result from the introduction of the broad gauge, such as the transfer of goods from one description of waggon to another. The laying down of four, instead of two, rails would not get rid of these inconveniences, while they would increase the danger, and render necessary a double stock of carriages and waggons. The opinion of the Board of Trade as to the danger, delay, and inconvenience likely to arise from such a complication of rails as would be established between Wolverhampton and Worcester by the present measure, remained unchanged. Under the peculiar circumstances of this case, and notwithstanding the natural disposition of the House to agree to the Report of the Committee, and allow this Bill to go on, he did hope they would hesitate before they came to a decision which, in effect, would decide the question that the wide gauge should be introduced, and the whole traffic of the country exposed to the inconvenience he had pointed out.

Sir T. Wilde

wished to say a few words on behalf of his constituents, who felt deeply interested in this question. It was a fearful thing that such a question should not be left upon its merits, and that the opinion arrived at by the Board of Trade, whose investigations were carried on in private, and of whose information they had no means of judging, should find an advocate in that House. When he attended the Board of Trade with a deputation from Worcester, asking to be heard, he was told that all parties had already been fully heard, and that every thing had been attended to. The gentleman who made this communication was Mr. Laing. He had such confidence in the impartiality of the Board, that he told his constituents he would not occupy its time by giving any information, when it had heard all that could be stated on both sides. He would now ask the right hon. Gentleman (Sir G. Clerk) to state whether he had himself, or whether he could produce any evidence that, with respect to the most important point decided by the Board, the other party had ever been heard, or had ever known that the case was before the Board? The Board of Trade had reported that there was great difficulty in transferring goods from one line to the other. Upon this point did they hear both sides, or only one? He had been distinctly told that the Great Western Company and the promoters of the other line had never been called upon to give any information on the subject, and never knew that any information had been received by the Board. The Board said, that they had been told by a great authority that there were great inconveniences in the transfer. When a witness was called before the Committee against the Bill, he used in his evidence language so much in correspondence with the words of the Report from the Board, that he was asked, "Did you make any communication to the Board?" The reply was, "Yes." He was then asked, "Did you make a Report?" He said, "No;" but he had received a letter from one of the Committee of the Board marked "private," and he had returned an answer marked "private" also; and the Report of the Board contained the words of this very letter from one of the parties engaged in opposition to the Bill. He asked again, whether the other side had received any information that such a statement had been made? When the engineers were called before the Committee, who, as he was told by his constituents, took extraordinary pains with the inquiry, those engineers one after another gave their opinion; and he would ask the right hon. Gentleman whether he could show in any cross-examination anything except that the transfer from line to line could be done with perfect facility, and that there were no such difficulties as were stated by the Board of Trade? It could be done by an apparatus which might now be seen at work, either by lifting the carriage off the waggon, or lifting the carriage, waggon and all, on to a truck suited to the other gauge. The witnesses gave the very minutes required to accomplish this. When Mr. Brunel gave evidence of this, he said, that if any one doubted whether it could be done, he might go and see it done at the Great Western. His examination was adjourned to enable Mr. Stephenson to go and see the apparatus, and instruct counsel for cross-examination. That gentleman did see it; there was no cross-examination of Mr. Brunel, and Mr. Stephenson was not called. Upon another point the Board had strongly expressed an opinion, and there was no evidence before the Committee. He said, that whatever respect he might have for the Board of Trade, he was sure the Committee had heard both sides, and that the objections which were so strong to the Board of Trade could not be unknown to the London and Birmingham Company, and they might have instructed counsel to cross-examine upon them; but they did no such thing. The attention of the Committee was directed alone to the evidence of the witnesses—there were no ex-parte statements; the witnesses were examined, and cross-examined, and re-examined, and examined by the Committee, which they did in the most creditable manner. To the Board of Trade he gave credit for the utmost probity and diligence; but they were pressed with all other business, and the Committee had devoted twenty-five days to the Report on this line alone. He apprehended, however, that these things had nothing whatever to do with the point now under discussion. It was provided by the 109th Clause of the Act, that the Company should be bound by any general measure which should be passed for the regulation of railways, and they were willing to introduce a clause into the Bill to alter the gauge, on the requisition of the Board of Trade. Between Wolverhampton and Bristol there were to be two gauges, the narrow and the broad. The best engineers were not agreed as to what was the proper gauge; and the hon. Member for Stockport had not, as he thought, exercised his great intellect when he lamented that without experience a certain gauge had not been adopted. They did not know the proper gauge, and why? Because they wanted more experience. What better, then, could they do than the Committee had done? The danger was an entire delusion; the different gauges on the same rail would be laid down side by side. The Board of Trade imagined that the rails of the broad gauge were to be laid down between the two rails of the narrow gauge; they would be distinct; the gauges would be side by side. What they wanted was experience, and it would be cruel to send away persons who had spent thousands of pounds, who had paid heavy fees to counsel, and examined a hundred witnesses before a Committee, when, if the width were to be fixed, they ought never to have been sent to a Committee at all. What reason was there for the Amendment, when the Committee were willing to adopt any gauge that might be required? It was an attempt to accomplish by a side-wind a diversion in favour of those who had been beaten. What the Committee had decided was this:—They were uncertain what was the precise gauge to be fixed on; but they looked at the public interests involved, and at the wants of the country; and they expressed an opinion that this particular line with this particular gauge, subject to a change, if required, should pass. The Report of the Board of Trade had been before them, and the judgment of the Committee was strongly pronounced after that Report. The House might legislate as to what was fit to be done for the future; but it was not reasonable, after the expense which had been incurred, that this Bill should be got rid of by a side-wind, especially as they had not experience enough to justify any conclusion. The right hon. Baronet had received great credit for the alteration of the tribunal within that House to report on these Private Bills, and he called upon him to use his influence to support the decision of the Committee. That tribunal now had public confidence; whether it would continue to have that confidence would a great deal depend on the decision to which the House should now come.

Sir G. Clerk

said, he wished to say a few words in explanation. He begged leave to assure the hon. and learned Gentleman who had just sat down that the inconvenience arising out of the broad gauge had been distinctly pointed out by the Board of Trade to the representatives of the Great Western Company, and that the question of the transhipment had been fully discussed by the Board. Several interviews had taken place between the Board and the agents of the Company upon that latter point. The Board had afterwards thought that they could receive no new information upon that subject, and might have given an intimation to that effect, to parties who proposed to wait upon them.

Mr. Ward

said, that he should not, probably, have attempted to address the House, if the right hon. Gentleman the Chairman of the Committee had not thrown an undue warmth into his vindication of the Committee. The right hon. Gentleman had said distinctly that no man could quarrel with the Report he had presented, without being influenced either by a private canvass, or by personal interest. ["No, no!"] The right hon. Gentleman had asked, if the decision of the Committee was to be set aside by private canvass, or by personal interest? Now, he utterly denied, so far as he was concerned, that any such feeling would actuate him in voting for the Amendment of his hon. Friend the Member for Stockport. He believed, that no Member of the House could propose that Amendment with cleaner hands than his hon. Friend; and that it would be admitted that he was perfectly exempt from the imputations that had been thrown out against him. His hon. Friend had, as he had himself stated, adopted the course he had taken upon national considerations, and he had nothing to do with the quarrels of the rival companies. Neither had he anything to do with those quarrels. There were much larger considerations involved in that question. He did not dispute the competency of the Committee to decide upon the matter referred to them; but the great question at issue had only come incidentally under the consideration of the Committee; and the Committee could not fairly complain of an appeal being made to the House from its decision. His hon. Friend the Member for Stockport had submitted two questions to the House; first, whether it would be advisable to multiply the gauges; and next, whether the Committee had selected the best points for carrying out their own conclusions? These were questions of sufficient importance to justify the House in determining that they should be referred to a Commission. The right hon. Gentleman the Chairman of the Committee had told them, that no one knew what was the best gauge that could be adopted; and it certainly appeared that the broad gauge and the narrow gauge had each some special advantage. With respect to the transhipment of goods, he could tell the hon. and learned Gentleman the Member for Worcester (Sir T. Wilde) that he could not, upon such a subject, pay to his opinion the same respect which he should yield to his opinion upon a point of law. He had himself been a railway director, and was conversant with such matters; and he had reason to know, that that transhipment would, in practice, lead to great expense, delay, and inconvenience. The operation might be successfully performed in the case of a single waggon; but it would present great difficulty in the case of immense masses of goods, and a great variety of carriages. Why was there not to be an inquiry into that point? Why were they to say that there might not be some better arrangement devised than any that had yet been proposed? He had the authority of one Member of the Committee for stating that they had not been unanimous upon all the points under their consideration; and he believed that another Member had only attended during a portion of the proceedings of the Committee. He hoped that, under these circumstances, the House would adopt the Amendment of his hon. Friend the Member for Stockport.

Sir T. Acland

said, that the question brought forward in the Amendment of the hon. Member for Stockport might be a proper subject for the consideration of the House; but he thought that that question should not be raised in the case of a particular Railway Bill. It might be very desirable that the whole question should be thoroughly investigated; but he denied that the investigation ought to take place upon that occasion. Such a mode of proceeding would be most unfair. He would tell the right hon. Gentleman the Vice President of the Board of Trade, that it could not be fair to raise the question then, and to call for a decision which would have the effect of throwing out a particular Bill. These two great companies had fought their battle before the Committee for many weeks, at an expense of several thousands of pounds; and it was not fitting that the battle should again be renewed in consequence of a decision of that House. He said that if they reversed the decision of the Committee, they would do no credit to the House. He asked them, why they had not before decided the question at issue? and why the point had then been raised for the first time? Let them pass the present Bill, and they might, next Session, refer the whole question to a Commission, if they should think fit.

Sir R. Peel

Sir, I do not hesitate to say, that I feel very great embarrassment as to the course which it is my duty to pursue upon this occasion. I think that, upon the whole, that is an excellent rule which prevents Ministers of the Crown from interfering in decisions with respect to matters which deeply affect great private interests; because it is exceedingly difficult for Ministers of the Crown to divest themselves of their Ministerial character in discussing such questions. I, therefore, think the general rule is an excellent rule—that Ministers of the Crown ought not to interfere on such occasions, I shall give my opinion on the present question in a purely judicial character. I have been asked to exercise all the influence I could to support the Resolution of the Committee; but I shall not exercise, and I shall not ask to exercise, any influence whatever in the matter. I shall exercise no influence to support the decision of the Board of Trade; and neither shall I exercise any influence in support of the decision of the Committee. But to leave the House without any expression upon my part of an opinion on the subject is a course which I am unwilling to take. At the commencement of the Session, I made a declaration to the effect, that I did not think that the Reports of the Board of Trade should in any way fetter the discretion of this House; that I thought those Reports were useful as materials for enabling us to form a judgment; but that I did not think that they ought necessarily to fetter the judgment of Committees or the judgment of the House. I have heard no imputations against the Committee which has decided upon this question. That Committee was presided over by a right hon. Friend of mine—a person fully competent to form a judgment upon matters of this nature, and I understand from him, that the Committee had come to a unanimous Resolution in favour of a certain Bill. Well, that being the case, and the Committee having devoted five weeks to the consideration of the subject, my opinion, which I have formed for myself individually, and as my judicial decision on the question, is, that it would not be wise to overrule the decision of that Committee. I cannot forget that I am acting judicially in this matter. The opinion of my constituents is, I am aware, in favour of a course adverse to that which I recommend the House to adopt; but I cannot forget the duty which my position in this House imposes upon me. I think there would be danger in overruling the decision of a unanimous Committee; and, looking at all the circumstances of the case, I am prepared to support that decision.

Mr. W. O. Stanley

thought, as a general rule, that the decisions of the Committees ought to be supported, unless special grounds could be advanced in support of an opposite cause. In this case it appeared to him that such special grounds could be shown. The hon. Member went into some details in support of his view, but the noise which prevailed in the House prevented their purport from reaching the gallery, and declared that he should support the Amendment.

Mr. Muntz

had no interest in any railway whatever, neither was he interested in the success of either the broad or the narrow gauge. As to his constituents, they were divided with respect to the relative merits of the systems. The right hon. Baronet said, that he could not determine the question, and it was evident that the Board of Trade could not settle it. To what authority could they then refer? They were mistaken if they imagined that the question would be set at rest by their decision on this case. He, therefore, called upon the House to pause and take the matter into their most serious consideration. In his opinion it was a great neglect on the part of the Government to have allowed two gauges in the first instance, and he advised them now to stop in time, and pay whatever sum might be necessary out of the Consolidated Fund. It was very easy to say leave both gauges; but would they say as much when they found the result to be collision, loss of time, and probably loss of life? He spoke on public grounds alone, having, as he had before stated, no interest in any line; and, as a man many years conversant with mechanical pursuits, he had formed one of a deputation to the Board of Trade, the object of which was to represent to the Board the injury which would be inflicted on the midland counties by sanctioning two gauges of different width; but he was not the author of any letter on the subject. He could not be accused of any partiality towards the Board, having opposed its appointment; but he felt bound to state that he never met more fair or intelligent men than the Members of that Board. They asked him and his colleagues whether they were interested in any railway, whether they thought the existence of two gauges likely to interfere with the trade of the country, and which gauge in their opinion was the best. To the last question his reply was, and he believed he spoke the sentiments of those who accompanied him, that he did not think it of any importance which gauge was adopted, provided it were universally applied; and that he believed the people of this country did not care one farthing about the matter, and that the question of the broad or narrow gauge was a mere quibble among engineers. Without wishing to cast any reflection on the Committee, he called upon the House, therefore, to pause before they sanctioned the construction of railways with gauges of different width. He thought the Motion of the hon. Member for Stockport decidedly entitled to support; nor could he understand on what ground it could be resisted, now that they repudiated the Report of the Board of Trade. Let them bear in mind that there were two or three thousand miles of railway on the narrow gauge. How would they manage to get their broad gauge trucks through the narrow gauge tunnels? He recollected urging this difficulty on the attention of the chairman of the Bristol and Gloucester line (as we understood), and the answer of that Gentleman was, that no difficulty would be found in getting the small trucks through the broad gauge tunnels, forgetting that the traffic must go both ways. He thought the Birmingham Company had claims upon their favourable consideration, having of their own accord lowered their rate of profits.

Mr. V. Stuart,

amidst much confusion, was understood to urge, that the ironmasters of Staffordshire had never yet been able to make use of the London and Birmingham line, in consequence of the narrow gauge.

Lord Ingestre

said, that were it not with reference to this particular Bill, he would support the Motion of the hon. Member for Stockport, for an inquiry with a view to securing one uniform gauge; and he hoped that hon. Gentleman would withdraw his present Amendment, and bring it forward as a substantive Motion.

Mr. Godson

said, that the Report ought not to be received, but that the Bill must be recommitted, for the sake of the public. The Report made by the Committee was contradicted by the clauses introduced into the Bill, which had been increased frm 52 clauses to 110 clauses. This Com- mittee, in which so much confidence was to be placed, had thus reported:— With regard to the guarantees stated in the Report of the Board of Trade to have been offered by the London and Birmingham Company, and to have appeared to the Board of Trade to hold out a prospect of permanent and certain advantage to the public, the Committee have required the same terms substantially from the Great Western Company, and they will be found embodied in clauses added to the Bill by the desire of the Committee. What was one of those guarantees? One article of such tariff to be, that coals and iron are to be carried at rates not exceeding 1d. per ton, including toll and locomotive power. In the original Bill, by Clause 45, the maximum toll— For coal, ironstone, salt, &c, is fixed at 1d. per ton, per mile. In the Bill reported, by Clause 88 the maximum toll— For coal, ironstone, salt, &c, is 1½d. per ton, per mile; being an increase of 50 per cent. to his constituents upon coal. But the effect upon the constituents of the hon. Member for South Staffordshire was greater. By the offer of the London and Birmingham Company a distance less than a mile was to be paid for as a mile. By Clause 84 of the reported Bill— All articles carried a less distance than six miles are to be charged as for six miles. Thus, in South Staffordshire, when the ironstone is removed from the pit to the furnace, if it pass along one mile of the side lines of this railway, the ironmaster may be charged 9d. per ton for that mile. But the imposition does not stop there; for by another clause there is a power to add on 15 per cent. for some distances, and 25 per cent. for other short distances. Thus, the 9d. might be increased to 11¼d. per ton, making a thousand per cent. increase, and salt may be charged this extra imposition of 15 per cent. Is the hon. Member for Droitwich prepared to tax his constituents 65 per cent. above the penny per ton per mile for the salt which is to be carried into Oxfordshire? What confidence can be placed in such a Committee? He had none, and would, therefore, vote against a Report which was so inconsistent with the guarantees given to the Board of Trade, with the evidence, and with the clauses which were intended to carry that Report itself into effect.

Colonel Anson

said, he had the authority of the ironmasters and coalowners of South Staffordshire to say, that upon reading this Railway Bill, notwithstanding there was some ambiguity in it, they were satisfied with a pledge they had received, that the whole of the toll required would be but one penny per ton per mile for fifty miles; and also he could state, that those who had come up to watch particularly the interests of the ironmasters of the county of Stafford were perfectly satisfied.

House divided on the Question that the words proposed to be left out, stand part of the Question:—Ayes 113; Noes 247: Majority 134.

List of the AYES.
Ackers, J. Forster, M.
A'Court, Capt. Fremantle, rt. hn. Sir T.
Ainsworth, P. French, F.
Arkwright, G. Gaskell, J. Milnes
Attwood, M. Gibson, T. M.
Baine, W. Gisborne, T.
Baird, W. Godson, R.
Bannerman, A. Grimsditch, T.
Barkly, H. Grogan, E.
Beckett, W. Halford, Sir H.
Bell, M. Hamilton, C. J. B.
Benbow, J. Hamilton, Lord C.
Bentinck, Lord G. Hanmer, Sir J.
Beresford, Major Harris, hon. Capt.
Bright, J. Hastie, A.
Broadley, H. Hatton, Capt. V.
Brocklehurst, J. Hinde, J. H.
Brotherton, J. Houldsworth, T.
Buller, E. Hughes, W. B.
Cavendish, hn. C. C. Hutt, W.
Cavendish, hn. G. H. Irton, S.
Chapman, A. Jervis, J.
Chapman, B. Johnson, Gen.
Clayton, R. R. Kelly, Fitz Roy
Clerk, rt. hon. Sir G. Lascelles, hon. W. S.
Clifton, J. T. Lawson, A.
Cockburn, rt. hn. Sir G. Loch, J.
Collett, W. R. Lockhart, W.
Collins, W. Lowther, Sir, J. H.
Colvile, C. R. Mackenzie, T.
Dodd, G. Maclean, D.
Douglas, Sir C. E. Mangles, R. D.
Duncan, G. Manners, Lord C. S.
Duncannon, Visct. Marsland, H.
Duncombe, T. Martin, J.
Duncombe, H. A. Meynell, Capt.
East, J. B. Mitcalfe, H.
Eaton, R. J. Morison, Gen.
Ellice, E. Mundy, E. M.
Etwall, R. Muntz, G. F.
Ewart, W. Newdegate, C. N.
Farnham, E. B. O'Brien, A. S.
Fielden, J. Ossulston, Lord
Fitzroy, hon. H. Packe, C. W.
Forester, hn. G. C. W. Paget, Col.
Pigot, Sir R. Tancred, H. W.
Plumridge, Capt. Tollemache, hn. F. J.
Polhill, F. Trench, Sir F. W.
Pryse, P. Walker, R.
Ricardo, J. L. Walsh, Sir J. B.
Rolleston, Col. Ward, H. G.
Rous, hon. Capt. Wilshere, W.
Ryder, hon. G. D. Winnington, Sir T. E.
Scott, R. Wrightson, W. B.
Smith, A. Yorke, hon. E. T.
Spooner, R. TELLERS.
Stanley, hon. W. O. Cobden, R.
Strutt, E. Wood, Col.
List of the NOES.
Acland, Sir T. D. Codrington, Sir W.
Acland, T. D. Colborne, hn. W. N. R.
Acton, Col. Colebrooke, Sir T. E.
Adare, Visct. Compton, H. C.
Aldam, W. Connnolly, Col.
Anson, hon. Col. Courtenay, Lord
Ashley, Lord Cowper, hon. W. F.
Astell, W. Craig, W. G.
Austen, Col. Cripps, W.
Bailey, J. Darby, G.
Baring, rt. hon. F. T. Davies, D. A. S.
Baring, T. Dawnay, hon. W. H.
Baring, rt. hon. W. B. Dawson, hon. T. V.
Barron, Sir H. W. Deedes, W.
Bateson, T. Denison, J. E.
Bellew, R. M. Denison, E. B.
Berkeley, hon. C. Dennistoun, J.
Berkeley, hon. H. F. Dickinson, F. H.
Berkeley, hon. G. F. Divett, E.
Bernal, R. Douglas, Sir H.
Bernard, Visct. Douro, Marq. of
Blackburne, J. I. Dowdeswell, W.
Blackstone, W. S. Drummond, H. H.
Blake, M. J. Duncan, Visct.
Blakemore, R. Du Pre, C. J.
Bodkin, W. H. Easthope, Sir G.
Borthwick, P. Eastnor, Visct.
Bowles, Adm. Ebribgton, Visct.
Bramston, T. W. Elphinstone, H.
Brisco, M. Entwisle, W.
Brooke, Sir A. B. Escott, B.
Buck, L. W. Esmonde, Sir T.
Bulkeley, Sir R. B. W. Estcourt, T. G. B.
Buller, C. Evans, W.
Buller, Sir J. Y. Fitzmaurice, hon. W.
Burrell, Sir C. M. Fitzroy, Lord C.
Busfeild, W. Forman, T. S.
Butler, P. S. Fox, S. L.
Carew, hon. R. S. Fuller, A. E.
Carew, W. H. P. Gardner, J. D.
Cartwright, W. R. Gill, T.
Castlereagh, Visct. Gladstone, rt. hn. W. E.
Charteris, hon. F. Gladstone, Capt.
Chelsea, Visct. Glynne, Sir S. R.
Cholmondeley, hn. H. Gordon, hon. Capt.
Christie, W. D. Gore, M.
Christopher, R. A. Goring, C.
Clements, Visct. Goulburn, rt. hon. H.
Clive, Visct. Granger, T. C.
Clive, E. B. Greene, T.
Clive, hon. R. H. Gregory, W. H.
Grey, rt. hon. Sir G. Northland, Visct.
Guest, Sir J. O'Brien, J.
Hale, R. B. O'Connell, M. J.
Hamilton, J. H. O'Conor Don,
Hamilton, G. A. Ogle, S. C. H.
Hamilton, W. J. Ord, W.
Hampden, R. Oswald, A.
Harcourt, G. G. Pakington, J. S.
Hawes, B. Palmer, R.
Hayes, Sir E. Palmerston, Visct.
Hayter, W. G. Parker, J.
Heathcoat, J. Patten, J. W.
Heathcote, G. J. Peel, rt. hon. Sir R.
Heneage, G. H. W. Peel, J.
Henley, J. W. Philips, G. R.
Henniker, Lord Phillpots, J.
Herbert, rt. hon. S. Pollington, Visct.
Hill, Lord E. Ponsonby, hon. C. F. C.
Hill, Lord M. Praed, W. T.
Hobhouse, rt. hon. Sir J. Price, R.
Hodgson, F. Protheroe, E.
Hollond, R. Pulsford, R.
Hope, hon. C. Pusey, P.
Hope, A. Rashleigh, W.
Hoskins, K. Redington, T. N.
Howard, hon. C. W. G. Repton, G. W. J.
Howard, hon. E. G. G. Richards, R.
Howard, P. H. Roche, E. B.
Howard, hon. H. Roebuck, J. A.
Howick, Visct. Round, C. G.
Humphery, Ald. Russell, Lord J.
Hussey, A. Russell, C.
Hussey, T. Russell, J. D. W.
Inglis, Sir R. H. Sandon, Visct.
James, W. Scrope, G. P.
Kemble, H. Seymour, Lord
Labouchere, rt. hn. H. Shaw, rt. hon. F.
Layard, Capt. Sheil, rt. hon. R. L.
Lemon, Sir C. Shelburne, Earl of
Liddell, hon. H. T. Sheridan, R. B.
Lincoln, Earl of Smith, rt. hon. R. V.
Lindsay, H. H. Somerset, Lord G.
Loftus, Visct. Somes, J.
Long, W. Sotheron, T. H. S.
Lopes, Sir R. Stansfield, W. R. C.
Lygon, hon. Gen. Stanton, W. H.
Mackenzie, W. F. Stewart, P. M.
M'Geachy, F. A. Stewart, J.
M'Taggart, Sir J. Stuart, Lord J.
Manners, Lord J. Stuart, W. V.
Martin, C. W. Strickland, Sir G.
Masterman, J. Sutton, hon. H. M.
Miles, P. W. S. Thesiger, Sir F.
Milnes, R. M. Thornhill, G.
Mitchell, T. A. Tomline, G.
Mordaunt, Sir J. Tower, C.
Morgan, O. Trelawny, J. S.
Morris, D. Trevor, hon. G. R.
Morrison, J. Troubridge, Sir E. T.
Murphy, F. S. Turner, E.
Murray, A. Vane, Lord H.
Neeld, J. Verner, Col.
Neville, R. Villiers, Visct.
Newport, Visct. Vivian, J. H.
Nicholl, rt. hon. J. Vivian, J. E.
Norreys, Lord Waddington, H. S.
Norreys, Sir D. J. Warburton, H.
Wawn, J. T. Wood, C.
Wellesley, Lord C. Worsley, Lord
Wemyss, Capt. Wortley, hon. J. S.
Wilde, Sir T. Young, J.
Williams, W. TELLERS.
Williams, T. P. Ingestre, Visct.
Wodehouse, E. Barneby, J.

Main Question agreed to.

Amendment read a second time.

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