HC Deb 27 February 1871 vol 204 cc945-6

I wish to occupy the attention of the House for a moment in reference to the Correspondence between Sir Spencer Robinson and the First Lord of the Treasury—to the challenge which the right hon. Gentleman threw out to me to bring before the House in a distinct form the allegation respecting the suggested alteration of the dates. I immediately gave Notice that I would bring the subject under discussion, and I now wish to ask the right hon. Gentleman if he will lay on the Table a Copy of the Correspondence, in order that that discussion may take place?


Sir, it does not appear to me that the correspondence between myself and Sir Spencer Robinson is such as could be regularly laid on the Table of the House. I will not enter into the reasons, but they are various, which would prevent me from laying such Papers on the Table of the House. In regard to the matter of the correspondence, it is entirely at the command of the hon. and gallant Gentleman, and he can pursue his own course with respect to it. It is a mistake on his part to say that I challenged him to discuss the subject of that correspondence. The challenge, if such it was, was originated in this way—that the hon. and gallant Baronet seemed by his cheers to support the statement of the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Buckinghamshire, that I had wished the date of a document to be falsified.


asked, Whether the Secretary to the Admiralty would state why the Minute of Sir Spencer Robinson, in answer to the Minute of the First Lord of the Admiralty, which has been laid on the Table of the other House two or three days ago, has not been laid on the Table of this House?


said, the hon. Member was not quite correct as to the facts. The Minute had been laid on the Table of both Houses, but had not as yet been printed. It would, however, be in the hands of hon. Members to-morrow morning.