HC Deb 08 February 1854 vol 130 cc340-2

Order for Second Reading read; Motion made, and Question proposed, "That the Bill be now read a Second Time."


said, that this Bill, to carry out a portion of the general plan for the drainage of the metropolis, was introduced by the present Commission of Sewers, whose term of office would expire in August next. Now, as the noble Lord at the head of the Home Office had stated his intention to introduce, during the present Session, a Bill constituting the Commission of Sewers on an entirely new principle, he thought it was desirable that this work should not be proceeded with by a body whose term of office was just expiring, and which certainly enjoyed the confidence of no one part of the metropolis. In 1850 a scheme of drainage for the south side of the metropolis, running between Vauxhall Bridge and Greenwichreach, was agreed upon by the then Commissioners, consisting of Mr. Peto, Mr. Cubitt, Mr. Rendell, Sir Henry Delabeche, and Mr. Stephens, and the cost was estimated at 241,000l. Nothing was done in furtherance of that scheme, and these gentlemen retired. The scheme of the present Commissioners was to make a sewer from Battersea Bridge to Deptford Creek, which would cost 750,000l. The outfall at Deptford was to be thirty feet below high-water mark, and the drainage was, therefore, to be discharged by pumping—a disturbance of the filth there collected which would, he believed, be an intolerable nuisance to the neighbourhood. It was his opinion that this scheme would never be carried out by a body into which the representative element was to be introduced; and if the noble Lord would give an assurance that none of the works contemplated by this Bill should be carried out until the new Commission was constituted, he would not oppose the Bill at this stage. In the meantime, as the noble Lord was not then present, he would move that the second reading should be delayed for a week.

Amendment proposed, to leave out the word 'now,' and at the end of the Question to add the words upon this day week.'"

Question proposed, "That the word 'now' stand part of the Question."


hoped the hon. Gentleman would not offer any opposition to the second reading, because, whatever change might be effected in the constitution of the Commission, the part of the plan connected with the general sewage of London, contemplated to be carried out by this Bill, must be carried into effect under any circumstances, and the pumping station at Deptford must always remain a necessary part of any general scheme. With respect to the objections that had been made to the pumping into the river of this quantity of sewage, many schemes had been proposed for the purpose of depriving that sewage of its noxious character, though none of them had yet been decided on; but if it were found necessary and possible, a tunnel would be constructed for carrying the sewage below Woolwich.


said, his objections lay, not to the scheme itself, but to the parties who were to carry it out, and begged the hon. Under Secretary to give his assurance, on the part of the noble Lord, that it should not be carried out by the present Commission.


said, he thought it would be better to postpone the Bill. The present scheme would involve a cost of from 2,000,000l. to 2,500,000l. for draining both sides of the river, and very competent engineers were of opinion that it could be done for one-third of that money.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.

Main Question put, and agreed to.

Bill read 2°, and committed, and referred to the Committee of Selection.

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