HC Deb 16 February 1863 vol 169 cc348-63

rose to move for leave to bring in a Bill to authorize the formation of a new street from Blackfriars to the Mansion House, in connection with the Embankment on the Northern Side of the Thames. This street was intended to complete the great thoroughfare from east to west, commenced under the Act of last year, which was the most urgent need of the metropolis at the present moment. Notwithstanding the great increase of streets, the Strand still remained the single great thoroughfare between the City of London and the City of Westminster. All the traffic from Charing Cross by the Strand, and all from the north-west of London by Oxford Street and Holborn, met, in going eastward, at Cheapside, and obstructed that narrow pass. Cheapside was wholly inadequate for proper communication between the east and west of London. What was absolutely required was another thoroughfare between the open space in front of the Mansion House and the two centres of West End movement at Charing Cross and Westminster Hall. The street which had been laid out with a view to make this new thoroughfare was submitted last year to the House in a measure which he introduced—the Thames Embankment Bill. The Committee to which it was referred had not time to consider in detail the objections that might be raised to this portion of the scheme; and it was postponed until the present year. But a good deal of attention had been paid to it during the recess, not only by himself, but also by a Royal Commission, who had examined witnesses on the question whether some other communication between the east and west of London might not be more advantageously adopted. The Commission had reported in favour of the street he had the honour to propose last year, and decided that no alternative line was preferable to it. The first alternative line was to carry the embankment still further from Blackfriars to the east. The Bill passed last year provided for a spacious thoroughfare between Westminster Bridge and Blackfriars, with thirteen acres of garden-ground for the recreation of the inhabitants; but, as a thoroughfare, it would be of little use if it stopped at Blackfriars Bridge. The question then arose, could the embankment be prolonged eastward? The wharves below Blackfriars Bridge had commercial traffic of the greatest importance and very large compensation would be required if they were destroyed. The business carried on at these wharves was so important to the commerce of the City of London that it would be a serious misfortune to the City to be deprived of those wharves. Besides, a road tarried in that direction would not go straight to the centre of the City, but would be circuitous. It would go first in an easterly direction to Queenhithe, where it would leave the river and proceed in a northern direction towards the Mansion House. Even if a lofty viaduct were adopted instead of a solid embankment, the compensation would be great, and the works costly. It was capable of being shown to any impartial inquirer that there would be no advantage in adopting the embankment in preference to a more direct line; and although, as a modification of their plan, they might have a viaduct that would permit barges to reach the wharves, the damage done and the compensation required would be very considerable, while the architectural effect would not he good. The other alternative was a line proceeding direct to St. Paul's; it was one which he greatly desired, because it would have that most desired effect of opening up the Cathedral to clearer view. It was a misfortune that that splendid work of art, the handsomest church of its style, was so little seen; and if the new street could be brought straight from Black friars Bridge, having the dome of St. Paul's in the vista, it would be a striking improvement. But the ascent of that street would be inconvenient, as St. Paul's stood higher than Blackfriars Bridge. The junction of the traffic in the new street with that of Ludgate Hill in St. Paul's Churchyard, and with the traffic of Holborn in Cheapside, would be very obstructive. St. Paul's Churchyard would require to he widened at a very large cost. He was therefore reluctantly obliged to come to the conclusion that a street direct to St. Paul's Cathedral was not advisable. The street proposed in the Bill which he asked leave to introduce would go in a very straight direction from Chatham Place to Charlotte Row, near the Mansion House. It would not be an expensive: route to take, because, crossing diagonally, it did not interfere with any streets where large retail trades were carried on. It would pass from Chatham Place across Earl Street, proceeding with a slightly northern inclination to Bennet's Hill, between Thames Street and Little Knightrider Street, enter Cannon Street West, cross Queen Street at the junction with Watling Street and Bucklersbury, and proceed straight to the north angle of Charlotte Row by the Mansion House. Here the outlet was narrow for both the traffic of the new street and that of the Poultry; but power was given in the Bill to widen the east end of the Poultry, and the removal of a few houses would give ample space for traffic. The rapidity of locomotion which prevailed over the rest of England ceased in the heart of its commercial activity, and the quickest way of reaching the Bank was on foot; the traffic through the City had been paralysed, but this line of thoroughfare would at once restore circulation. The funds for forming the new street were to be drawn from the Thames Embankment Fund, created by the Act of 1861. The total ultimate cost of the street was estimated at about £600,000, and the first outlay at a million. In order to supply the deficiency which might thus be occasioned to the fund, it was proposed to prolong the coal duties for a further period of ten years beyond the year 1871, till 1881. He did not propose to make any alteration in the mode of collection or in the amount to he paid. It was generally agreed that the coal duty was to be appropriated to metropolitan improvements; and he had to ask the House to enable the Metropolitan Board of Works to borrow money at once upon the security of the future proceeds of this coal tax. If that were done, and the tax were taken for the further period he had named, the money would be provided not only for these improvements, but for others required in the metropolis. It was greatly desired that some portion of the southern shore of the Thames should be embanked. The Royal Commission which considered the question of embanking the Surrey side of the river reported in favour of an embankment to extend from Westminster Bridge to Chelsea Bridge. He was afraid that scheme was too extensive to be carried into effect; but some portions of it were most urgently required, particularly that which lay between Lambeth Palace and the gasworks near Vauxhall Bridge. If the residue of this extended coal tax were expended in making an embankment on that spot, which might hereafter become a part of a general embankment of the Surrey shore, immdatious would be prevented, and a useful thoroughfare established. A Bill was under consideration for that southern embankment, but it was thought better not to make it part of the scheme which he now proposed, and it would form the subject of a separate measure. The next improvement in point of urgency was the raising of the valley between Holborn Hill and Skinner Street. If the coal duties were extended as he proposed, that portion of them which was under the control of the City Corporation would be expended in that improvement, and in taking advantage of the present opportunity to re-arrange all those streets which would be disturbed by the various railways now proposed underground and overhead in that vicinity, and to Smithfield Market. In that way he believed the coal duties might be made most serviceable towards the objects for which they had hitherto been granted, He might add that the embankment near Lambeth of which he had spoken would become very useful as a thoroughfare to the Nine Elms and Vauxhall stations, which at present were very difficult of access. The right hon. Gentleman concluded by moving for leave to bring in his Bill.


said, that the particular improvement of the new street from Black-friars Bridge to the Mansion House was by no means a new one. Some twelve or fifteen years back the Corporation of London entered upon that very improvement, and they had in the Cannon Street improvements already commenced this new street, which was intended to run from Cannon Street down to Blackfriars Bridge. Now, on the part of his constituents, he wanted to know why the right hon. Gentleman proposed to transfer from the City of London to the Metropolitan Board of Works the advantage and the honour of making that street, and to place it on the remaining portion of the inhabitants of the metropolis? The new street was already commenced — some hundred yards of it or more had been already completed. New Cannon Street was an honour to the City. It was true, that as the old houses had been left on one side and new ones built on the other, it could not be considered as a Parisian improvement; but in this metropolis, where they did not expect things to be quite well done, it must be admitted that New Cannon Street answered very well. Why, then, stop the City of London in that which they had commenced? Why should that House, hardly cool from having appropriated the coal duty for ten years, be asked to appropriate it for ten years more? The right hon. Gentleman talked about bridging over the Holborn valley. Why, that had been talked about for the last hundred years, and no attempt had been made to carry out the work. Out of the 13d. coal duty paid by the whole metropolis the City of London was to have 4d. What had been done with tha4 d., and what was to be done with it? Before the House came to a decision on this matter they ought to know what the City of London had done with that 4d., and whether the City was not in a position with that 4d. to carry out its own improvements. If the Chief Commissioner of Works was not sufficiently in the confidence of the City authorities to be able to furnish the House with the requisite information on that point, the Lord Mayor, whom he was glad to see in his place, would perhaps favour them with it. A new street from Blackfriars to the Mansion House was, no doubt, very desirable, but he warned the right hon. Gentleman that his estimate of its expense was likely to prove very incorrect. The property through which the new thoroughfare would pass was almost as valuable as that in any other part of the City, and it was a great mistake to imagine that it would not cost much to buy it up because it comprised few retail shops. But did the right hon. Gentleman think that retail trades were the chief value with regard to buildings in the City? If the right hon. Gentleman knew anything about compensations, he would know that there were such things as markets in the City of London, and that the wholesale houses had their business premises in those markets; and the argument always used in City compensation cases was that a considerable amount should be given, because, when a business house was removed from the neighbourhood of a market, there would be great difficulty in finding other eligible premises. His opinion was that the compensation required for this street would be enormous, and he believed that the cost would be at least half as much again as that estimated by the right hon. Gentleman. It was remarkable that the right hon. Gentleman should ask for leave to introduce n Bill to impose upon the Metropolitan Board of Works a task to which he believed their sanction had not been asked. The right hon. Gentleman had said that when the question last came before the Committee very little was understood about it; but sufficient was understood about the Thames Embankment to reject that part of the scheme, and to decide that the Embankment should be from Westminster Bridge down to Black-friars, and there to stop; and their intention was, that if carried further, the City was to execute it out of the 4d. from the coal duties to which he had before referred.


rose to a point of order. He understood the right hon. Gentleman to say that he was going to extend the period over which the coal duties would exist and out of the monies obtained by the extended term of those duties he expected to obtain sufficient to pay for the new works now proposed. If that were so, he would ask whether it was competent to proceed with the Bill without previously going into a Committee of the whole House?


said, that what he desired to convey was that this Bill would give the Metropolitan Board of Works power to appropriate money out of the Thames Embankment Fund for the purpose of those works; therefore, this Bill, not going beyond the giving of the power to the Metropolitan Board, could not be considered as raising any tax or imposing any duty. It gave no power whatever to increase the Thames Embankment Fund. But he thought it necessary to state, that in order to make sure that this Thames Embankment Fund would be able to meet all the charges which might come upon it, it was his intention at a future day to propose a Bill having for its object to replenish and increase that fund; but he had thought it right on this occasion to follow the precedent of last year. They knew what the Thames Embankment Fund was at the present moment, but he had no wish to run any risk, and therefore he intended at a future day to ask the House for the means of increasing that fund.


said, here was a Minister of the Crown bringing in a Bill to enable certain bodies to do certain things, and to pay for the work out of certain funds which he knew were insufficient. He said that these certain funds having been appropriated by the House to another object, he knew they would be insufficient to carry out the new scheme which he was now proposing; and therefore at some future time he would come and ask them to renew a certain tax for ten years. That was placing the House in this unfortunate position, that they would be assenting to a thing to be done without assenting to the mode of paying for it. It might be strictly in order, but he could not but say that it was not a convenient mode of doing business. It was only fair to the House and the parties who would have to pay this tax that the propriety of continuing the tax should be considered at the same time as the scheme was proposed, which for anything he knew might be a very good one.


said, he thought that upon the point of order, what had fallen from the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Oxfordshire (Mr. Henley) was a correct exposition of the state of the case —that it was rather a question of form and convenience of legislation than a question of order. If no charge was imposed upon the public by the Bill, the case did not arise in which it would be necessary to go into a Committee of the whole House to obtain its previous sanction. Until such a question arose, it did not appear to him that the right hon. Gentleman was wrong in point of order in the course he had pursued.


said, he did not rise to dispute the position of the right hon. Gentleman (Mr. Cowper) as to the necessity of metropolitan improvements, but to ask him to postpone the consideration of this Bill for a week or two on a variety of considerations. One reason was, that the Board who by this Bill were delegated to carry out the improvement would meet on Wednesday next in order to consider the propriety of abandoning a considerable portion of the street as proposed to be laid out by the right hon. Gentleman. It did appear to him that the right hon. Gentleman would be placed in an anomalous position in asking for power to make a certain street when those who were to carry it out might not feel inclined to do so. Another reason was, that there was not in the Bill any proposal to raise the money. That, he understood, was a question that was to come on in a few weeks. Then he wanted to know why the right hon. Gentleman introduced this Bill at all? He asked him to postpone it because the City authorities were divided in opinion as to whether the lower portion of this street should be constructed. Like his hon. Friend the Member for Southwark (Mr. Locke), he was opposed to paying for the improvement out of the 9d. coal duties. Let the City carry out this improvement and pay it out of the 4d. coal duty. He asked the right hon. Gentleman to postpone it to give further time to those who were interested to discuss the question. Another reason was, that the engineers employed by the right hon. Gentleman and the engineers employed by the Metropolitan Board of Works were directly at variance as to both the cost and the gradients; and when he told the House that some hundreds of thousands of pounds were involved in this difference of opinion it would be seen at once that further discussion by the Board was necessary before they proceeded with this Bill.


said, that the hon. and learned Member for Southwark (Mr. Locke) had correctly stated that it was part of the City scheme- that New Cannon Street should be continued to Blackfriars Bridge to form an outlet for the Thames Embankment when completed. But, as hon. Gentlemen must be aware, the reason the street was not continued was because they had no funds. The 4d. coal tax was forestalled by the streets already made; and therefore the City was in this difficulty, that while they felt this outlet was required to relieve their most enormous traffic, they had no funds to make the street. Therefore it was that the right hon. Gentleman (Mr. Cowper) proposed to continue the coal tax for a certain longer period, in order that the funds might be raised for the construction, not only of the street which the City authorities contemplated in the first instance, but to carry it on to the Mansion House. It was absolutely necessary that something should be done to relieve the City of the enormous traffic; but he for one did most earnestly object to the introduction of the Metropolitan Board into the City proper. They had done their work well and faithfully, and he was sorry to see any Board imported for the construction of streets in the City of London—a duty which had been well done by the City itself. They were in this difficulty, that they had not got the means to carry out what they desired; and he thought that if the House thought it wise to continue the coal tax, they could not do better than give the City authorities power to carry out the scheme now proposed.


said, that the right hon. Gentleman should have first brought in a Bill for the embankment of the Surrey side of the Thames. [A laugh.] Gentlemen might laugh, but he could tell them that the inhabitants of that side were great sufferers from inundations, and something was absolutely required to be done for the future protection of their property. He dared say that the scheme proposed by the right hon. Gentleman was a good one, but there was no absolute necessity for it, while there was an absolute necessity for relief to be given to the inhabitants of the Surrey side. The highest authority in that House—the noble Lord at the head of the Government—had stated that the embanking of the Surrey portion was more urgently required than the north, and he was perfectly correct. Then, again, it was most unbusiness-like that the right hon. Gentleman had not provided the means for carrying out his object. He thought that the Bill ought to be postponed.


deprecated the attempts made to procure a postponement of the measure. At any rate, it ought to be introduced, in order that hon. Members might see what it contained. The Lord Mayor had advocated the taking of the work out of the hands of the Board of Works, and placing it in the hands of the City, and yet we were informed that it was twenty years since the City began the improvement, and only one hundred yards were now completed, they having failed for want of money. Was that really any encouragement to them to postpone a measure of which there was a reasonable expectation that it would be practical and useful? He hoped that this Bill would be at once introduced. Of course, there need he no hurry about the second reading.


trusted there would be no postponement of the measure, for every day was of the greatest importance to the traffic of the metropolis. The Committee of last year considered it necessary that a new street should be made from Blackfriars Bridge. The embankment had been intrusted to the Board of Works; and it was most desirable that the new street should be proceeded with simultaneously with the embankment; but he must say that he participated with the Lord Mayor in his regret that the City had not the carrying cut of the works. It was a question, as most questions were, of pounds, shillings, and pence. Such a street as the right hon. Gentleman had proposed, so suited to the purpose, so absolutely necessary, ought to be constructed, and that quickly; and he hoped that no delay would be interposed on the part of the House, but that the House would allow the right hon. Gentleman to bring in the Bill.


said, he did not wish to throw any obstacle in the way of the introduction of the Bill, which contained some good points, but at the same time it would require a critical examination in Committee. One among its good points was that it did not interfere with the large commercial interests below Black-friars Bridge. On the other hand, he did not view with favour the introduction into the City of London of diagonal streets, as they led to great and practical inconvenience, and embarrassed the traffic. If the formation of the new street was not carefully carried out, there would be great obstruction at Blackfriars Bridge. Unfortunately the Corporation had not the means of conducting this work at the cost and charges of the City; and as the work could only be done by monies raised from the metropolis generally, he thought that the inhabitants of the metropolis at large were justly entitled, through their representatives at the Board of Works, to the conduct of the work. The success with which the City had carried out the Cannon Street improvement would justify their being intrusted with this work if they had been able to provide the funds. The reason why the Committee of last Session struck out the clauses regarding this new street was because they found that the estimates of the engineers of the Board of Works were based on insufficient data, and differed so much from the information obtained by the City in the construction of Cannon Street as in the judgment of the Committee rendered them not reliable, and it was thought better to bring in a Bill this year. The right hon. Gentleman (Mr. Cowper) had alluded to the probable necessity for pulling down houses on the south side of the Poultry and at the end opposite the Mansion House, with a view of providing increased space for the traffic there. He did not know how funds were to be provided for this scheme, as he did not think it would be possible to find any part of London where the claims for compensation would be larger than at that particular spot. On this subject he might state that the Charing Cross Railway Company intended to construct a station where the Unity Buildings now stood in Cannon Street. This station would probably be a great place for the continental traffic, and it would be necessary to widen all the streets connected with it.


said, that nobody denied that the new street would be very useful— the question was, who was to pay for it? His right hon. Friend the Lord Mayor said that the City was too poor to do it at its own expense. Why, the City was the richest community in the world, and yet it was said to be too poor to pay for its own improvements. It was desirable that the House should have a few particulars laid before them in reference to what had been done with the 4d. coal tax. They had heard that it had been spent or hypothecated; but they had never had a clear and business-like account in reference to the matter. Until that was done, on the part of his constituents he protested against the City putting their hands into other people's pockets to pay for City improvements. They had heard that differences had arisen between the engineers of different schemes, amounting to hundreds of thousands of pounds. If that were true, what was the grand total of the enormous sums of which this was only the difference? Considering the enormous sum which would be required to pay for this new street, he could not help coming to the conclusion that the Chief Commissioner had done wrong in introducing a measure which, like this one, prejudged the question how the work was to be paid for. Last year he assented to the Thames Embankment being paid for by the coal tax, because that was a work of great necessity to the whole metropolis, and his constituents contributed very largely to the coal duties. But at the same time, he gave notice that the improvement was of no more advantage to his constituents than it was to any of the inhabitants of places within twenty miles round London; and that he would not consent to the whole of the City improvements being dealt with in that way. The proposed street would cost about £1,000,000; and if that large sum was to come out of the coal duly, he should like to know when any other part of the metropolis would have a chance of putting their hands upon any part of the produce of the tax. He hoped that they might not be put into the painful position of having to oppose a Bill introduced by the Government. He trusted that the right hon. Gentleman would get up and say he would, on a future day, bring in this Bill and also a Bill to provide the funds at the same time.


said, the noble Lord the Member for Marylebone had complained that no account had been exhibited of the expenditure of the 4d. coal duty, and the complaint appeared to indicate the erroneous theory that the City authorities were responsible to the metropolitan Members. The 4d. was an immemorial right appertaining to the City of London—[No, no!] —and did not come within the category of taxes which were properly subject to regulation by that House. Whether it were an immemorial right or not, the Corporation had received it through many centuries, and had performed the obligation of spending it with great purity and usefulness, and had obtained great credit for the public works which they had carried out by means of that fund. He would, however, give the House an epitome of the accounts, showing what had been done with the produce of the 4d. coal duty. The fund had been anticipated in one way and another for the making of Moorgate Street, Gresham Street, New Cannon Street, and for other public improvements, and it was somewhat more than exhausted at the present time. The present Bill was only one of several which proposed to take away forty acres of house and street property in the City, for the purpose of effecting great public improvements. This was a great sacrifice on the part of the inhabitants; and the extent and number of the alterations were such as to render it incumbent on the House to see that those improvements were carried out in an harmonious and well-devised scheme. The Chamberlain of London, a most competent authority, had calculated that the income of the Corporation from the 4d. tax for the period for which it had been extended would amount to £330,000; and the proposal of the Corporation to raise Holborn valley would require from £380,000, to £400,000 to carry it put. It would be for the House to consider whether the coal tax should be appropriated to the purpose of this great improvement in connection with the railway works which were about to be carried out in that neighbourhood, or for making the street to the Mansion House; but in either case the duration of the duty must be continued beyond the period for which it was already imposed. He hoped the House would permit this Bill to be laid upon the table, and that it, with other Bills proposing to take land and make improvements in the City, would be referred to a Committee or to the right hon. Gentleman's Department, or would be dealt with by the House altogether. There was another circumstance which he would mention. The Great Eastern Railway proposed to extend their line into Fins-bury Circus at a level of 18 or 20 feet above the streets, whilst the Metropolitan Line proposed to go to the same place, but in a cutting about 18 or 20 feet below the surface; so that any person wishing to pass from one line to another would have to ascend or descend about 40 feet. This was one of the matters which would require consideration. Another was that the Corporation were coming to Parliament with a Bill to rebuild Blackfriars Bridge, and the works should be con- structed so that the new street and the Embankment should be in harmony with the new bridge and with the railway station in Cannon Street.


said, that all the speeches he had heard had shown the necessity of postponing the Bill, and therefore he would suggest that it should be withdrawn for a fortnight, and that the two Bills for executing the work and providing the money should be brought in at the same time. He thought the feeling of the House was in favour of a postponement of the Bill. There was no wish to throw any undue obstacles in the way of those great works; but, representing as he did a district of the metropolis, lie had every objection that for a purely City improvement the metropolis should be called upon to pay the whole expense.


If my right hon. Friend was asking the House to decide upon the third reading of this Bill, the appeals which have been made would have some foundation, because it might fairly be said, "Don't let us pass a Bill affirming that a certain work is to be done until we see how the means are to be provided from which the expense is to be defrayed." But that which my right hon. Friend is asking the House is simply to allow him to bring in a Bill that it may see what the measure is, and may in course of time determine whether this work is one which it is expedient to execute. If my right hon. Friend had followed the recommendation of the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Oxfordshire (Mr. Henley), he would have been open to the charge of putting the cart before the horse, to which he is now not liable, because to have brought in a Bill providing a sum of money without previously determining to what object it is to be applied, would have been a solecism in legislation, and my right hon. Friend would have been told, "Don't ask us to continue a tax unless you tell us to what object it is to be applied. First let us approve of the work, and then determine how the money is to be raised." I therefore think that the course of proceeding adopted by my right hon. Friend is perfectly logical and perfectly Parliamentary. If the House gives him leave to bring in this Bill, he will, in the shortest possible time, introduce the other, and before the week is over the House will have both Bills before it, and will be able to form a judgment upon the subject. We can, however, do only one thing at a time, and it is impossible to move for leave to bring in two Bills at once, and thus, as it were, take a double-barreled shot at the House. My right hon. Friend has, I think, judged rightly that the first thing to be done was to bring in the Bill proposing the work, and then, before that Bill is read a second time, to introduce the other, showing in what way the necessary funds are to be raised. Great objection has been made to the proposal that the expense of making an improvement within the City should be defrayed out of funds raised from the whole of the metropolis. That argument would be well founded upon the assumption that the improvement to be made will be solely and entirely for the benefit of the City of London; but surely no man who has of Into years gone from one end of the town to the other can be under the impression that increasing the approaches from the West End to the City is a matter which purely and solely concerns the inhabitants of the City. Why, it concerns all that immense number of persons in the metropolis who from day to day have business in the City; and of its necessity no one can require proof, because you have only some fine morning to take a cab at Charing Cross, and order the cabman to drive into the City, and by the time that you have spent two or three hours in getting there, and two or three hours in getting back, you will be amply convinced that some additional line of communication is required for the convenience, not only of the people of the City, but of the people of the metropolis in general. Therefore, it seems to me to be perfectly just and right that the cost of this improvement, which we all admit to be absolutely necessary, should be defrayed out of the produce of a tax which is applicable to the whole of the metropolis. Of course, every man has his own peculiar scheme. The hon. and learned Member for Lambeth (Mr. Locke) says that you ought to begin by embanking the southern side of the river. I quite admit that that work is urgently required; but we have embarked on another scheme. We have begun the embankment of the northern side, and that embankment will not be productive of all the advantages derivable from it unless we provide this further development for the accommodation of traffic. Therefore, I say, let us finish one thing before we begin another, and I shall be ready to concur with my hon. and learned Friend the Member for Lambeth as to the necessity, as soon as we can do it, of embanking the southern shore of the river, for the purpose of rescuing the people of Lambeth from what we all know to be an intolerable nuisance arising from the floods which fill up their cellars and their streets with the most odious refuse. I hope that the House will not refuse my right hon. Friend leave to bring in this Bill, and they may be well assured that in the course of a few days he will bring in the other which he has mentioned. A good deal has been said about a great difference between the calculations of the engineers who have calculated the expense of this street. It is said that that difference' amounts to several hundreds of thousands of pounds. I believe that those who have made that statement are entirely misinformed. As far as I am informed, it is quite a mistake. There have been differences of opinion as to the gradients which it may be desirable to adopt, but there has been no difference whatever as to the expense.

Motion agreed to.

Bill for making a new Street from Blackfriars to the Mansion House, in the City of London, in connection with the Embankment of the River Thames on the northern side of that river; and for other purposes, ordered to be brought in by Mr. COWPER and Mr. PEEL.

Bill presented, and read 1°. [Bill 23.]