HC Deb 02 July 1860 vol 159 cc1310-2

Order for Second Reading read.

MR. C. P. VILLIERS moved the second reading of this Bill, on the understanding that an opportunity for discussing it should be afforded on the Motion for going into Committee.


hoped that full time would be given for the discussion. There were many things connected with this Board which it was generally believed it would be as well to change.


hoped the right hon. Gentleman would be satisfied that the powers of the Board should be renewed until next Session—when the House might have a full opportunity for discussion. One of the Secretary ships, in his opinion, might be well dispensed with.


also begged to add his voice to that of the hon. Member who had last spoken, that the powers of the Board should be continued only for one year. If the right hon. Gentleman would not consent to that, would he give an assurance that the Committee on the Bill would be brought on, when there might be an opportunity for full and fair discussion?


said, that the Bill consisted solely of one clause, which proposed the extension of the powers of the Board for five years, and he did not see why that need prejudice the question whether those powers should be restricted or not. It had often been suggested to take powers only for one year, in order that there might be an opportunity of discussion; but any one who had any experience of office must be aware how very much the action of a Department is paralysed when its powers are limited to one year. He should be disposed to vote for this Bill, and he thought five years better than one; but if any hon. Gentleman were to raise that question, he would suggest that it be done on going into Committee.


said, that the extension of the powers of the Board for five years was a question of principle, and as the Bill consisted only of one clause, the discussion would be more properly taken on the second reading.


said, that the Secretary to the Poor Law Board had repeatedly stated that it was his intention to introduce a Bill this Session in order to get rid of the admitted hardship and cruelty which prevailed with regard to the removal of Irish paupers. He should not oppose the second reading of this Bill, provided his right hon. Friend would say that he was about to introduce another Bill this Session. Otherwise he should be disposed to oppose the Bill.


thought it was a rather Irish mode of dealing with the grievance. How the opposing this measure could compel the bringing forward such a Bill as the hon. Gentleman desired he could not conceive. If the Poor-law Board had the strongest intention of dealing with the grievance (which he admitted was a great grievance), there would not be the slightest possibility of having a Bill introduced with a chance of passing in the present Session. He would urge his right hon. Friend not to be led away by the blandishments of hon. Members to limit the continuance of the Bill to one year.

Mr. BEACH and Colonel DICKSON advocated the limitation of the Bill to one year.


hoped that Gentlemen who were opposed to the construction of the Poor-law Board would not hesitate to express that opposition, whether in Committee or on the second reading. There was a strong feeling in the country that this Board was not required; and when the Board was first established by Lord Althorp a distinct pledge was given that as soon as the system was regularly organized throughout the country its powers should cease. It might be necessary to give the Board time to wind up its affairs; but there was nothing in the working of the Board which an under-secretary might not perform, and that without the expensive machinery which they had at present.


said, if the right hon. Gentleman would not give a pledge that there would be an opportunity for discussing the Bill, he would move that the Bill be read a second time that day three months.


was of opinion that the Board was too large, and with the facilities of electric telegraphs the expense of Commissioners might be dispensed with.


said, it would be impossible to fix an early day, but the House should have an ample opportunity for discussing the provisions of the Bill on going into Committee.

Bill read 2°, and committed for Friday.

House adjourned at a Quarter after Two o'clock.