HC Deb 07 March 1848 vol 97 cc311-2

moved for leave to bring in a Bill to secure the rights of the outgoing tenants in Ireland. It was his intention to propose to secure those rights by confirming and extending the custom of tenant-right as it exists in the province of Ulster. His object was to bring before the House, in the form of a distinct proposition, what that tenant-right was, and what provisions would be necessary to make it law. His Bill would be confined to that particular object, the explanation of tenant-right, and those provisions that would be necessary to enforce it. As the proposition for leave to bring in the Bill was not, he understood, to be opposed by the Government, he would postpone his statement of details until the second reading, and now merely move for leave to bring in the Bill.


said, that it was not his intention to offer any opposition to the introduction of the Bill.


considered that a subject of more importance could not come before Parliament. Many years had passed of promises to and expectations on the part of the people of Ireland. Commission after Commission had sat on the subject, and the time seemed to be coming when, if the Legislature did not interfere, the people of Ireland would take the matter into their own hands. He perceived the repeal agitation was becoming a tenant-right agitation, and rallying around it the farmer classes of Ireland, many of whom were vitally interested in the question.


declared that he was opposed to the introduction of the Bill, and would, if necessary, divide the House on it.


had always found that any attempt to interfere between masters and men had been productive of greater injury to the men than to the masters. He considered that any individual who held out hopes that they could divide the land between the possessors and the tenants, held out hopes that would do injury. Though he would desire to see improvements effected, with the sanction of the proprietors, he would not wish to see compulsory means adopted.

The Motion agreed to. Bill brought in and read a first time.

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