§ MR. W. EWART moved for leave to bring in a Bill to amend the Free Public Libraries' Act. He said, that twenty-five public libraries had been established under that Act, besides Schools of Art and Museums. Those institutions were not only open to all choosing to avail themselves of the advantages which they offered, but, being generally connected with lending libraries, extended their benefits in all directions. The object of the Bill which lie asked leave to introduce was to afford facilities for collecting the rate, by collecting it with the general rates instead of by itself, and for making the Act apply equally to all parts of the United Kingdom.
§ MR. F. S. POWELL
said, he gladly welcomed any measure having for its object to render more efficient the Free Public Libraries.
THE CHANCELLOR or THE EXCHEQUER
Sir, my hon. Friend need not expect opposition. On the contrary, the Government will afford him every support and assistance for the success of his Bill. I cannot refrain from seizing this opportunity of cordially congratulating my hon. Friend on having been permitted, during a long and honourable Parliamentary life, to see the gradual development of the fruit of his labour, and to watch these institutions spread throughout the great centres of population where it is so desirable they should exist. My hon. Friend's name is associated with many achievements of public utility, but with this act of legislation, I think, he may feel assured that 1235 his name will be associated not only during his life, but after he is gone.
§ Motion agreed to.
§ Bill presented, and read the first time. [Bill 44.]