HC Deb 18 April 1872 vol 210 cc1474-5

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department, What is the reason that in the Return of the number of Beer and Cider Licences granted in the year 1870 in each petty sessional division and each borough in England, ordered to be printed on the 14th February last, no return is given in reference to the borough of Salford, and the only return as to the petty sessional division of Middleton, in the county of Lancaster, is a note to the effect "that the petty sessional division of Middleton for the granting of Licences is held at Rochdale," and that "no Licences are granted at Middleton;" whether any application was ever made to the clerk to the justices of the borough of Salford for such Return; whether, on the receipt of such a note as that inserted in the Return in reference to Middleton, any application was made to the justices' clerk at Rochdale for such a return; how far, with the knowledge of two such omissions as these, the House can rely on the Returns laid upon the Table as covering the entire area of England and Wales, and as including all the Licences granted therein; and, whether the numbers include both Public House and Beer House Licences?


Sir, these Returns were ordered in May, 1871. The number of petty sessional divisions to which the order was sent was 670; the number of boroughs with commissions of the peace 188. The borough of Salford has recently received a commission of the peace, and is the only borough that did not receive an order for the Return. All the boroughs with the exception of Sal-ford—accidently omitted—Ludlow and Scarborough, made Returns. Of the 670 petty sessional divisions all made Returns, except 14 English and six Welsh, the names of which I will furnish to the hon. Gentleman. They have been repeatedly applied to, but have not sent in their Returns. The House is aware that although these Returns are ordered the Home Office has no power to compel them to be made. With respect to Middleton, the information supplied was that the Returns had been sent to the clerk of the justices at Rochdale; but he has made no Return, although he has been written to on the subject. With these exceptions, which are not very considerable, the Returns may be said to be complete. They relate only to beerhouse licenses.