HC Deb 30 April 1866 vol 183 cc209-13

(52.) £26,940, to complete the sum for Law Charges, &c, Solicitor to the Treasury.

(53.) £141,567, to complete the sum for Criminal Prosecutions, &c.

(54.) £197,650, to complete the sum for Police, Counties and Boroughs, Great Britain.

(55.) £2,810, to complete the sum for the Crown Office, Queen's Bench.

(56.) £8,520, to complete the sum for Admiralty Court Registry.

(57.) £2,236, to complete the sum for late Insolvent Debtors' Court.


, observing that a new Bankruptcy Law Amendment Bill was promised, said, that it was a feature of all so-called bankruptcy reforms that new places were created, and the former officials handsomely pensioned off. He suggested that in any future Bill a clause should be introduced providing that if the amended scheme did not work well, the officials appointed under it should not be entitled to superannuation.

Vote agreed to.

(58.) £63,430, to complete the sum for the Probate and Divorce and Matrimonial Causes Courts.

Motion made, and Question proposed, That a sum, not exceeding £120,821, be granted to Her Majesty, to complete the sum necessary to defray the Charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending on the 31st day of March 1867, for the Salaries and Expenses connected with the County Courts.


inquired, whether any consideration had been given to that portion of the Bill, lately passed, by which the salaries of the registrars, high bailiffs, and treasurers had been to a certain extent abolished.

Motion made, and Question proposed, "That the Chairman do report Progress, and ask leave to sit again."—(Mr. Goldney.)


said, the Bill referred to did not abolish the offices, but only empowered the Treasury not to fill them up as they fell vacant. A certain number of officers might, under that Act, be retired upon certain conditions.


called attention to what seemed to he the enormous charge of £15,000 for the travelling expenses of the County Court Judges.


called attention to the enormous expense of the County Courts in England, amounting in the whole to £166,267, while the travelling expenses of the Judges came to no less than £15,000 a year. In Ireland the expenses of the County Courts amounted to only £40,000; and out of that sum upwards of £13,000 were received in the shape of fees; so that the total charge to the public was only between £26,000 and £27,000.


complained that in Ireland public officers in general were not so highly paid as in England.


said, that in Ireland the building and repairing of the court houses were paid for out of the county rates, while in England that charge was met by the Consolidated Fund. He did not think that was a fair arrangement for Ireland.


said, the question as to charges on the Consolidated Fund and charges on local rates had been inquired into by a Parliamentary Committee last year, and he should decline to enter upon it on the present occasion. As to the travelling expenses of the Judges, considering the large number of these Judges—more than sixty, in fact—and that they were travelling for three-quarters of a year, he did not think that the amount was extravagant. The expenses, however, of the County Courts were not, he admitted, in a satisfactory state, but as they intended to dispense with the treasurers and high bailiffs, these changes, along with some others, would effect a saving of something like £70,000. As to the comparative expense of the English and Irish County Courts, he might remark that the Irish people did not go to law very much about small sums of money, and considering the costs attending the administration of justice generally throughout the United Kingdom, he did not think that the amount required for England was larger in proportion to the extent of business involved than it was in Ireland.


commented upon the fact of the police force being in reality a standing army in Ireland, and thought it unjust that the people of Ireland should be compelled to pay half the expense of it. It appeared to him that it would be only fair to place the whole expense of it upon the Consolidated Fund.


concurred with the hon. Member for Leitrim, and said he intended to bring the question of the police force in Ireland before the House when the Report of the Commission in reference to the subject was laid before the House.

Motion, by leave, withdrawn.

Original Question put, and agreed to.

Vote agreed to.

(60.) £3,280, to complete the sum for the Land Registry Office.

(61.) £17,093, to complete the sum for Police Courts, Metropolis.

(62.) £123,071, to complete the sum for Metropolitan Police.


called attention to the great want of precaution in licensing drivers of cabs and other public vehicles. On one occasion, wishing to go from Westminster to the City, he was driven over Westminster Bridge and then brought to a standstill, as the driver did not know the route, and on inquiry it appeared that he was a stranger to London. On Saturday afternoon, in Newgate Street, he saw a cab conveying a number of pigs' car-cases. He thought that that was not a proper purpose to put a vehicle to which was usually intended for the conveyance of human beings. These were but two of many instances showing want of precaution which had recently come within his experience and observation, indeed, lately he had been on the watch for them. He believed, that as a class, the drivers of cabs were better than they used to be, and he did not receive from them anything like the incivility he once did. Possibly one reason was he knew the fares as well as the drivers did, and when he tendered the correct amount, without asking a question, they saw it was useless to attempt extortion. It was very seldom he met with insolence; and his complaint was that men were allowed to drive who did not know London, and who did not know the rules of the road. They all knew that cabs were used to convey fever and other patients to the hospitals.


corroborated the state- ment of the hon. Member for London regarding the dangerous uses to which cabs were often applied. He had the authority of medical men connected with some of our hospitals for stating that many infectious diseases were propagated by the improper use of public cabs to convey patients to hospitals.


did not see how Government could prevent cabs being used for such a purpose. He was told that it had been found impracticable to provide conveyances for patients by subscription; and it was rather too much to expect the Government to supply them.


said, Parliament might enact that they should be provided by each parish, and might attach a penalty to the improper use of public cabs.


said, nothing was more disgraceful in England than the condition of the cabs and cab-horses in the streets of London. He thought if the salaries of the Commissioners of Inland Revenue were increased by £500 a year each, so that they might be enabled to employ inspectors who could look after these things, we should have better horses and better cabs.


gave an instance of the ignorance of cab drivers in many cases as to the localities to which they were asked to drive. Upon one occasion last year, or the year before, he engaged a cab at the bottom of Waterloo Place to take him to Harley Street. The driver wished to know where Harley Street was, and on being informed that it led out of Cavendish Square he asked, "Where is Cavendish Square?" He (Sir Stafford Northcote) told him that it was in the direction of Regent Street, whereupon the man asked, "Which way is Regent Street?" adding, as he pointed towards the Strand, "Is it that way?"


, in reference to the danger to which people were subjected who hired cabs which had been previously occupied by persons suffering from contagious diseases, suggested that the Poor Law Board should enable unions throughout the country to provide cabs for persons suffering from such diseases. That course had been followed by the guardians in the borough which he represented, and, while it was inexpensive, he had no doubt it was most protective.


gave another instance of ignorance of cabmen, which had happened to himself within the last three hours. He and a friend had chartered a cab to bring them to the House of Commons, but it was only after a severe struggle that they prevented the driver from taking them to Doctors' Commons, and even when by means of constant directions he brought the cab to the Houses of Parliament, he would insist upon driving past the House of Commons and taking his fare on to the House of Lords.

Vote agreed to.

House resumed.

Resolutions to be reported To-morrow;

Committee to sit again upon Wednesday.