MR. H. BERKELEY
said, he would beg to ask Mr. Chancellor of the Exchequer, Whether it is the intention of the Government to change the port of departure of the Mails from. Southampton; and whether, since a Committee of the House decided in favour of Bristol as a port of departure, but did not consider there was sufficient accommodation for ships and passengers, and those requirements being now obtained by a Railway to Portishead, and the projection of Docks, a Bill for which is before Parliament, he would take the case of Bristol into consideration?
MR. PEEL replied
, that there was no present intention of changing the port of departure of any of the Mails which now left Southampton. In consequence of some memorials which had been received, inquiries were being made as to what would be the advantage in point of time, and as to what additional subsidy would have to be given if the West India Mail Packets which left Southampton were required to call at some port more southernly than Southampton, with the view of landing and embarking Mails. He imagined that Bristol, as a port of call for vessels starting from Southampton, would be unsuited. As to its being available as a port of departure, when any contracts had to be renewed the Government would be unfettered with regard to the acceptance of an offer on that subject, and such an offer would, of course, be taken into consideration.