HC Deb 28 April 1864 vol 174 cc1771-2

said, he wished to ask the President of the Board of Trade, Whether any communications have been received by Her Majesty's Government from the Astronomer Royal and Comptroller General of the Exchequer as to the urgent necessity for an adjustment and re-verification of the Exchequer standards of Weight and Measure; and, if so, the date thereof; whether any steps have been taken for effecting such adjustment and re-verification; and, if so, when the same will be completed; whether any representations have been made with a view of relaxing the Law against tradesmen for small deviations in their Weights and Measures until the standards have been ad- justed and re-verified; and whether it is the intention of Her Majesty's Government to submit any Bill to Parliament this Session, in reference to the present state of the Law relating to Weights and Measures?


said, in reply, that a communication had been received from the Astronomer Royal to the Comptroller General of the Exchequer, dated February 1, 1859. It had been transmitted to the Secretary of State for the Home Department, with a letter from the Comptroller General, dated February 9, 1859. It would be found printed and appended to the Report of the Committee on Weights and Measures in 1862. Since that time the Report of the Astronomer Royal to the Treasury, dated March 30, 1864, as Chairman of the Standard Committee, lately revived by the Treasury for the examination of the national standards, had been received, transmitting a Resolution of the Committee of March 16, 1864, with reference to the re-verification of the Exchequer standards— That the Committee entirely recognize the importance of this subject, and the necessity for again urging it on the attention of the Government. No official instructions had yet been issued for effecting that object, the subject being still under the consideration of the Treasury. Two letters addressed to the President of the Board of Trade by Mr. James Hayman, as secretary of the Society for Promoting the Interests of the Trading Community, dated respectively July 10, 1863, and September 26, 1863, had been received; but, as at present advised, it did not seem necessary that any Bill should be brought in to alter the law imposing penalties for small deviations in weights and measures.