HC Deb 03 July 1854 vol 134 cc1073-5

said, he would now beg to move for leave to bring in a Bill for the better regulation of the rural police.

Motion made and Question proposed, "That leave be given to bring in a Bill for the better regulation of the Rural Police."


said, he did not wish to offer any opposition to the noble Lord, but he hoped that the noble Lord would not be misled by supposing that there existed a more favourable disposition towards a measure of this description on the part of the counties than there was on the part of the boroughs. With regard to the county he represented, there was a con- viction that the existing system of police was quite sufficient for all purposes.


said, if the present Bill embodied the same objectionable compulsory principle as that contained in the Bill which the noble Lord had withdrawn, he should oppose it.


said, he would appeal to the noble Lord whether it was at all advisable at this period of the Session to introduce a new Bill upon the subject of police.


said, he thought there could be only one reason for such a Bill, and that was the change which had been introduced in the law by doing away with transportation and adopting the system of tickets of leave. But that change in the primitive system of the country required that the expense of an additional police force should be borne by the Consolidated Fund, and not be imposed on the county rates.


said, he thought the Bill ought to be circulated through the country, in order that its provisions might be known, and, if that were done, the noble Lord could scarcely hope to have time to pass the Bill this Session.


said, he hoped the noble Lord would not attempt to press the Bill through this Session. No Bill, he thought, could be satisfactory which did not insist upon the amalgamation of the police of the smaller boroughs with the police of the counties, and he therefore regretted the readiness with which the noble Lord had yielded to the representations made to him from certain quarters. He was inclined, however, to think that the difficulties which the noble Lord had met with proceeded from the manner in which he had dealt with the large towns. He did not sympathise with those who desired to have particular counties excepted. He thought there ought to be one regular and uniform system for all, and he hoped the noble Lord would bring in a measure based on this principle at an early period next Session, so that its provisions might be fully discussed.


said, his only wish was to do that which would be best for the interests of the country at large. He quite agreed with what had fallen from the right hon. Baronet opposite, that any measure on this subject ought to proceed on the principle of amalgamating the smaller boroughs with the counties, though in those towns where no separate quarter sessions were held, the county police having run for run with the borough police, there was not so much need of amalgamation. He firmly believed that before next Session considerable inconvenience would be experienced generally throughout the country from want of a measure of this sort. He felt, however, that he had done his duty in the matter—he had proposed to the House that which he thought the best measure; he had tendered that which he considered the next best; but, if it were the wish of the House that the subject should be postponed until next Session, he should be sorry, by any undue pertinacity, to endanger the success of that system which he believed to be necessary, and to which he was convinced the country must come in the end. If it were the wish of the House, therefore, he was quite willing to withdraw this Motion.

Motion, by leave, withdrawn.

The House adjourned at Two o'clock.