HC Deb 03 August 1854 vol 135 cc1259-61

moved the following Resolutions:— 1. That towards making good the Supply granted to Her Majesty, the sum of 500,000l., a part of the sum in the Exchequer of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, or remaining to be raised on the 5th day of July, 1854, to complete the Aids granted by Parliament for the service of the years 1852 and 1853, be applied to the service of the year 1854. 2. That, towards making good the Supply granted to Her Majesty, the sum of 22,322,743l 9s. 11d. be granted out of the Consolidated Fund of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. 3. That, towards making good the Supply granted to Her Majesty there be issued and applied to the service of the year 1854, the sum of 149,342l. 15s. 1d., being the Surplus of Ways and Means granted for the service of preceding years.


said, he had collected from the very able speech of the noble Lord the President of the Council, in proposing the Vote of Credit, that of the sum of 3,000,000l. intrusted to Her Majesty for the purposes of the war, it was possible that some portion might be applied as a subsidy, and he only rose for the purpose of expressing his opinion, grounded upon experience, that such a course would be imprudent, as it had in former instances proved disastrous. He should be prepared, if it were necessary, to show that subsidies had in every instance counteracted, rather than forwarded, the object for which they had been granted. He deprecated the idea of paying troops belonging to the Sultan, because he believed that if they paid them one month, they would have discontent, and perhaps still more unpleasant consequences, in the next. He trusted that Her Majesty's Government would consider this subject well. He believed that the war was necessary. The House had placed cheerfully at the disposal of the Government all the resources which were necessary for carrying it on with effect, but it had a right to look to them, in return, to apply those resources in the best possible manner, and not to waste a single shilling. He thought that anything like a subsidy would tend to this result, and he rose to enter his caveat against anything of that kind being done without the gravest consideration.


had not understood the noble Lord to shadow forth anything like a subsidy, but he confessed that, looking at the expense of transport, and at the difficulties of climate with which our troops in the East had to contend, he thought it was an admirable suggestion that we should endeavour to embody the natives of some of the countries in which the war was being carried on, placing over them officers of our own, Far from appearing to him to be at all objectionable, he confessed he should be very much pleased that such an attempt, even on a small scale, should be made, and he trusted that the Government would not he seduced, by what had fallen from his hon. Friend, from, at all events, trying this plan.


said, the returns which he should move for to-morrow, when they were laid upon the table of the House, would prove that in case after case these subsidies had failed in their object; and he protested against any money being paid to any foreign troops while we had our own troops to rely on, since it was on these that the maintenance and vindication of the honour of this country must depend.


concurred with his hon. Friend the Member for Perth (Mr. Kinnaird). They were engaged in a most important war. Did they intend to prosecute it to any efficient purpose? If they did, they must be prepared to make some sacrifices; and he thought that the best, the cheapest, and the most expeditious course they could take would be to take into their pay some of the natives of the countries in which the war was carried on. They all knew that the native troops in India, when officered by British commanders, gave as good an account of the enemy as any men that could be brought into the field, and he believed that no men fought better than the Portuguese, when under British officers, during the last war. He was convinced that some energetic measures must be taken if the present war were to be brought to a satisfactory result. Were we to increase our Army, then, to an enormous extent? He did not think the hon. Member for Montrose would like that. We had already a very large army for this country to have sent abroad, but it was a very small army when compared with those of foreign Powers. If we wanted to increase its numbers, would it not be a good plan to employ the natives, who would make excellent soldiers, and other foreigners who would be at our disposal, and who might be got at an infinitely less cost than must be incurred by an equal augmentation of our own troops?

Resolutions agreed to.