§ Order for Second Reading read.
§ MR. CARDWELL
, in rising to move "That the Bill be now read a second time," said: Sir, the question has been so much discussed on former occasions, and, owing to the Reports which have been laid on the Table, is so well understood, that I shall not think it necessary to occupy you at any great length in moving the second reading of this measure, the object and purpose of which is to raise the money necessary to give effect to the scheme of Army Reform proposed by the Government. It is well known to the House that all the Land Forces of the country have been placed under one control; and that although first appointments in the Auxiliary Forces will be still made by the Lords Lieutenant of the county, yet promotions will be made founded upon considerations of efficiency, in a manner corresponding with the military system already existing, and submitted to Her Majesty, like promotions in the Regular Army by the Commander-in-Chief. All officers will be required to give certain proofs of efficiency, and to attain that end an Inspector of Auxiliary Forces has been appointed; schools have been established for training officers, and other measures adopted for carrying the system into effect; and it is intended that, while service in the Militia shall be one of the qualifications for a commission in the Army, that a certain number of officers in the Regular Army shall hold commissions in the 1201 Militia. With regard to recruiting, it is well known to the House that all recruiting, both for the Regulars and Militia, is in the hands of a general officer in every district; that the commanding officer is invited to encourage men who have been enlisted in the Militia to pass into the Line; and the Militia Reserve has been readily raised up to the full number of 30,000 men sanctioned by the vote of Parliament; and that the Army Reserve already numbers between 7,000 and 8,000 men. Although it has been said in some quarters that we cannot rely upon these men being forthcoming when wanted—["Hear, hear!"]—my hon. Friends opposite say "Hear, hear"—the number of men who have been absent at the appointed periods is remarkably few, and by the latest Returns between 16,000 and 17,000 have already entered the Army, on condition at the expiration of a limited service of going into the Reserve. By the Mutiny Act, which the House has passed during the present year, recruiting is for the future provided to be for the brigade rather than the regiment. I was asked in the early part of the year by the hon. Member for North Lancashire (Mr. F. Stanley), what are to be the relations of the officers of the linked battalions? That subject has occupied a great deal of the consideration of the Commander-in-Chief and the military officers by whom we are surrounded; but I shall not be able, until final arrangements are made, and until it is exactly known what regiments are to be linked together, to announce our decision on the subject. All I can say is, that it is our earnest desire to draw the connection as close as can be accomplished, without breaking down those feelings and traditions which every regiment of the Army so warmly cherishes. I hope my hon. Friend and the House will be satisfied with that statement in the meantime. Now, these arrangements being made for drawing together more closely the Auxiliary Forces and the Regular Army, it is also perfectly manifest that local arrangements must be made for carrying it into effect. For any plan of this kind it is obvious that the union of the brigade is absolutely necessary; that localization for the purpose of recruiting, so as to give a local attachment and feeling; and that subdivision into manageable districts, under experienced officers of the Regular Forces, are essential conditions 1202 of the success of the system. Accordingly, 66 brigade centres are to be established in the United Kingdom, and they are to be military head centres of each brigade district. A brigade will consist of two battalions of the Line, two of the Militia, and the Volunteers that reside within the district. The depot battalions will be localized there, and also the Militia, and, so far as convenience will permit, the Volunteers; and the recruits both for the Line and the Militia will be trained there. The officers in the Militia and the Volunteers will obtain instruction there; and the arms of the Militia, and, so far as convenience will allow, those of the Volunteers will be stored there. As to what the personnel of the brigade centre will consist, the House will find that fully explained in the Report of the Committee that has been already laid upon the Table. It will be sufficient for me to say that there will be a selection of non-commissioned officers on whom the efficiency of the system will very much depend—that they will be very carefully selected, and many of them will be married men living in quarters selected for the purpose, and that they will be the very best men to give instruction to recruits both for the Army and the Auxiliary Forces. This proposal has met from the country generally the most favourable reception, and we have had a great number of applications from towns and places desirous of being selected for brigade centres. There have been some few exceptions, but they have been only a few, and the general feeling has been exceedingly favourable to their reception. There have, however, been some exceptions, and those exceptions did not come generally from this part of the United Kingdom, where the proposed organization will be a county organization, but from Ireland particularly; and in other parts of the country where more counties than one are associated in one brigade centre similar representations have been made. Take, for instance, Limerick, where the grand jury say—"We have expended a large sum of money in preparing accommodation out of the county funds for our own county Militia; and we object to have the whole of the Militia entirely removed to a centre at a distance from us." In a supplementary Report the Committee have met that difficulty where only it exists—in cases where there 1203 are more than one county associated with one brigade centre—that they have done in the Report which was circulated a week ago. They have been exceedingly careful not to convey the impression that they mean to break down in the slightest degree the principle of the centre organization. The system which is applicable to one part of the United Kingdom is not always exactly applicable to every other part, and what may be perfectly applicable, for instance, in Sussex, may not be applicable in four or five Irish counties associated together and joined to one brigade centre, and therefore the recommendation of the Committee is, that in the latter case we should proceed tentatively, and that, at least, in the first instance, we should not withdraw from the other counties the head-quarters of their Militia regiments. They will be equally under the command of the colonels commanding the Regulars at the depôt centre—all the principles of the system will be maintained; but by arrangement, the head-quarters of the Militia being for the time left within the county, opportunities will be taken in many instances to train the recruits not at the brigade centre, but at the garrison of the Regular troops that may happen to be within the county. I will not fatigue the House by entering into longer explanations how the arrangement is to be carried out, for I presume the Report is familiar to all. It is sufficient to say that the scheme will receive its exact application in almost all the counties of England, but in some instances—and especially in Ireland, where more counties than one will be associated—it is proposed to proceed tentatively, to ascertain whether the local convenience will be best suited by leaving the head-quarters of the Militia regiments in their own county. That being the scheme, the object of the present Bill is to enable us to raise the money to carry it into effect. I have seen it stated that this is a measure that presumes that we shall always rely on the Militia to the extent to which we rely on it now, and that we shall therefore not rely entirely upon the Reserves of men who have passed through the Army on short service, and who have afterwards gone into the Reserve. The hon. Gentlemen opposite who distrust the Reserve altogether will not be less pleased with the scheme on that account. But what I wish to observe on this occasion is this—that the necessity for this 1204 localizing principle does not depend upon whether you rely upon the Militia or the Reserves—that it is equally applicable to both. It is not the proposal to build barracks to train the Militia, for the county Militia are to be trained under canvas; and if you rely upon the Reserves, you would not require these centres less, but rather more; for I agree with the hon. and gallant Member for West Sussex (Colonel Barttelot), that to rely upon the efficiency of an Army of Reserve you must have a localized system; because in order to enable you to find the Reserve men when you want them, they must be divided into their several localities, and be sought for where they are known. If you suppose that the day will arrive when you will cease to rely upon the Militia, that would render the measure even more necessary than it is now. The proposition for recruiting and localizing the interests of different regiments in different places is essential to any system, whether you rely upon the Militia or upon the Reserves. But there are other objects which we have in view. The billeting of the Militia is to be abolished, and on that I insist as one of the greatest boons we can have. I know nothing more fatal to discipline than the system of billeting the Militia. I know nothing more injurious in a moral and social point of view than the habit of billeting the Militia. And I know nothing more oppressive to those on whom they are billeted, or more unjust than the practice of billeting the Militia. Whether, therefore, you wish to preserve discipline, or to make the Militia efficient, or to produce good moral effects, or to do justice to those upon whom an unjust tax is now levied, I am sure you would cordially agree in the plan for abolishing the billeting of the Militia. Another object of the Bill the House will observe is this—There are charges which by law are now cast upon the locality. You passed an Act to place all the forces under a central control; and when you did that, the time had gone by for levying charges of this kind upon localities. Another object is, that we should decentralize our system, so that instead of all the burden resting upon the central office, you might be able, upon the occurrence of any emergency in any locality, to have your forces at once under arms. That is an object that we have in view in the present Bill. I have, however, seen it stated 1205 that in the present measure we do not provide a complete tactical arrangement throughout the country. That this is so to a certain extent I will not deny; but I will give my reasons for it. In the first place, I am informed by General MacDougall, the Chairman of the Committee, that if a complete system, at all approaching to that which prevails in Prussia, had been the object of the present measure, it would have been necessary for me to ask you not for £3,500,000, but for a sum more nearly approaching £12,000,000. That is a proposal which would, I think, have been entirely unjustifiable, and one which I should never have ventured to propose. I explained on a former occasion how entirely different were the requirements of Prussia, and of this country. In Prussia they have compulsory service; they have not, as we have, half their battalions engaged in foreign service; and they have a large Army. In this country out of 140 battalions 70 are always abroad, and of the remaining 70 some must be collected at training stations like Aldershot; and in the event of war, our insular position requires that we should not move our Army as the Prussians do, in large bodies collected and travelling by rail; but our troops must all converge at some port of the country, in order to be put on board ship, and find their base of operations at some foreign port. These circumstances are so entirely different that it would not be a matter of wisdom and good judgment for us to follow implicitly the Prussian practice. In making the compensatory arrangements that we were required to make through employing barracks now occupied by Regular troops for the purpose of training centres, and, therefore, being compelled to provide compensatory accommodation for our Regular troops, we have considered how the best tactical arrangement could be made, and I hope you will find that the proposals laid on the Table are calculated to bring about the best result. The result will be that our colonels will be able in every district, when called upon by instructions from the central authority, at once to place under arms and equip all the Regulars, Auxiliary Forces, and Reserve, with all their personal appliances; and every general officer will at once be able to concentrate all his Forces, completely equipped for service, with their camp equipage and military stores, without any 1206 reference to Woolwich, or to the War Office, so that the assembling of an Army would be only a matter of hours. The £3,500,000 which I now ask for, besides completing the brigade centres and barracks for the continuous training of the Militia in Yorkshire, Lancashire, Staffordshire, and Essex, will give a new tactical station in Yorkshire, complete the tactical stations of Shorncliffe and Colchester, provide for a brigade of infantry always under training for siege operations at Chatham, provide a regular depôt for stores in Yorkshire, and a new training ground for the Regulars and Volunteers in London. The sum which I ask for is, I believe, the maximum, for I wish to be free from all danger of having to come with a supplementary charge on a future occasion. No one can speak with certainty on a matter of this kind, and I have had some warning from the extraordinary rise in almost all prices that has taken place since I made the arrangement; but I remain of opinion that I have asked for a maximum sum. The money is to be advanced by the Treasury from the Balances, with power, in the usual way, to recruit the Balances by loans raised upon Terminable Annuities should they afterwards require it. If we take the charge as a permanent annual charge, probably 3¼ per cent is the rate at which we ought to estimate it, and the annual charge for all time would then be £113,700 a-year. We have already voted for billet money £113,000, £6,000 for the movement of depôts, and £1,000 for drill-grounds for the Militia, making together £120,000 a-year, for charges which at first sight this sum of money would appear to supersede; but it would not be a fair calculation to take the whole of the amount, and I shall make some important abatements from it. There will be a sum, which I estimate at £40,000 a-year, out of the £113,000 for lodging money; a sum equal to a charge of £15,000 a-year for the wear and tear of camp equipage owing to the great encampment of Militia; and another sum, which is scarcely, perhaps, a fair deduction, amounting to £12,000 a-year for fuel and gas, which we shall have to expend, but which is now charged upon those who are unfortunate enough to have the Militia billeted upon them. They, from their 4d. per day, have been compelled to meet these charges which we shall have to pay hereafter, but 1207 which have hitherto been a most oppressive and unfair tax on a special portion of the Queen's subjects. These deductions will make £67,000 a-year, which, taken from the £120,000, leaves a balance of £53,000, which represents the actual saving effected by the change under these heads. Then we relieve the counties of the charges which they have been in the habit of bearing, and I have endeavoured as well as I could to find out exactly what they were. For the last eight years the average charge on the counties in England only has been £24,000 a-year. I have not been able to obtain precise accounts from Ireland and Scotland. It would not, however, be fair to take the whole of that £24,000, for a portion of it is the repayment of money formerly expended in buildings, which will in time cease entirely; and I am now taking it as if it were an expenditure for all time, but I am only making a fair estimate when I take £20,000 a-year for the whole of the United Kingdom, instead of £24,000 a-year for England alone. That brings the £53,000 up to £73,000 a-year, which we shall save in return for the £114,000. That accounts, then, for £2,250,000 out of the £3,500,000, and if that were all that could be said, I think that for the additional £1,250,000 an ample equivalent would be found in the great advantages gained by the scheme in recruitment, in discipline, in the abolition of billeting, and in other matters. But there is another circumstance to be taken into consideration. You have now in the country 70 battalions, where four years ago you had only 46. You have adopted this mode of distribution for purposes of high political importance, but also for purposes of economy. You have withdrawn the forces from the colonies, and you have centred them at home, and the result has been the development of great defensive power, and a great feeling of independence on the part of the colonies, without any diminution—and I believe with an increase—in their feelings of loyalty and attachment to this country. But you have obtained it by a very great economy. It entails, however, the necessity of providing additional accommodation in barracks in this country, and at the same time a great increase in the space requirements for the accommodation of each individual man in the Army has been rendered necessary by the new sanitary 1208 requirement of 600 cubic feet per man, and although, in some cases, the number of men in these returned battalions has been reduced, the cadre has in all cases been maintained, and as the battalions pass from one barrack to another, no barrack can be deemed sufficient which will only receive a battalion at its minimum strength. Judged, then, strictly in accordance with a pecuniary view of the matter, the scheme cannot be held to be extravagant, for the result of all this has been that you would have had to provide additional accommodation for about 9,000 men, and to place an additional sum of money in your Estimates for that purpose. I therefore think you will consider the £1,250,000 fairly accounted for if these objects have been attained. I take no credit for the reductions in the permanent Staff, which I feel sure will result from this system of concentration, or for the selling of any of the smaller barracks, which may be disposed of when the system is carried into effect; and I think I have shown you a very fair pecuniary case for the measure which I ask you now to read a second time. When the scheme is accomplished, we shall have in every district under competent officers of the Regular Army a portion of that Army and all our Militia and Volunteers. We shall have in every sub-district training grounds available for the training of recruits, both for the Regulars and the Militia, and for training the regiments of Militia and Volunteers in connection with the Regular troops. Our recruiting will be made systematic under one control, and there will be power to every colonel to put the Army, Militia, and Volunteer and Army Reserves under his command on foot immediately on notice. There will be storehouses in every district for the arms of the Regulars, Militia, and of the Volunteers, so far as their convenience may induce them to make use of them. There will be power to the general officer to combine the whole Forces within his district whenever ordered, including camp, equipage, and stores, without having recourse to the War Office. There will be a large tactical station in the North with barracks to train the Militia in those counties where, owing to the state of the labour market, the continuous training of the several Militia regiments is possible, such as Lancashire, Yorkshire, Staffordshire, and Essex. These barracks will be avail- 1209 able in winter for the Regular troops. We shall also have a metropolitan exercising ground for the Regulars and Volunteers. The billeting of the Militia will be abolished, and although we have not got that complete tactical arrangement which some hon. Gentlemen recommended, and which the example of Prussia favoured, we shall have in this country complete tactical stations in Yorkshire, at Aldershot, at Dublin, the Curragh, Shorncliffe, and Colchester, and we shall have at Chatham the means of assembling always successively a complete brigade of infantry to be undergoing training in siege operations under the officers of the Royal Engineers. This seems to me to be as complete a system as the necessities of the country require, or as a reasonable regard to economy justifies. This has not been made the ground for an increased charge which would have amounted to many more millions, but in completing the brigade centres, having to provide compensatory arrangements for the Regular troops, the House will have kept in view the purpose of expending sums of money necessary for the compensatory arrangements in the way best calculated to secure the best tactical arrangements for the Army—both Regulars and Reserves. These are the objects which this Bill has in view, and I trust that the House will consider that the financial arrangements have not been prepared without a due regard to economy. I now beg to move the second reading of the Bill.
§ Motion made, and Question proposed, "That the Bill be now read a second time."—(Mr. Secretary Cardwell.)
§ MR. RICHARD
said, that although professedly incompetent to pronounce an opinion on the Bill from a military point of view, he would venture to assert that the scheme would prove exceptionally popular if in two or three years hence it was not assailed by the representatives of the service as wholly unsatisfactory, if not absolutely worthless, for such had been the fate of every modification of our military establishments during the last 25 years. The advocates of large armaments were always, like a spoilt child, crying for some new toy. It was, therefore, inexplicable to him how the right hon. Gentleman could labour under the delusion that the scheme would lull the country into a sense of safety, and extinguish those ignominious panics to 1210 which we had been so frequently exposed. He (Mr. Richard) objected to the Bill because it involved a large expenditure on a doubtful experiment, and also because it covered the country with a web-work of military institutions, the tendency of which was to make us what we have always deprecated—a military nation. At one time the Conservative party distinguished themselves by their hostility to large standing Armies, and some of its members were still faithful to its ancient traditions. As a proof that they still retained that opinion, he would instance the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Buckinghamshire (Mr. Disraeli), who, in his great speech at Manchester last April stated that we had a large standing Army established in England, contrary to all the traditions of the land, and that by a Liberal Government and with the warm acclamations of the Liberal party. For his own part, he objected to large military establishments, not only on account of their enormous cost, but because they tended to foster a spirit of war, and were too often schools of immorality and vice. The moral condition of our Army and Navy was simply appalling. Wherever, indeed, a body of soldiers was stationed, it became a corrupting and demoralizing agency. In support of this statement he could cite the testimony of Colonel Dickson, once a Member of that House, as to the Aldershot camp being a seat of corruption and iniquity; a letter written by a clergyman in The Times three years ago, characterizing the camp at Colchester in similar terms; and the Report presented last year by the Royal Commission on Contagious Diseases. He thought, however, they were not required, for the Contagious Diseases Acts were in themselves a confession of the immorality of our Army. Our military system tended to foster vice and immorality by taking men in the full vigour of youth, and dooming them to a life of laborious idleness. He also thought he was justified in referring to the provisions of the Mutiny Act, exempting soldiers from the burden of contributing to the support of their illegitimate children, and had no hesitation in characterizing them as offering a premium upon seduction and desertion. In fact, he had the authority of Sir John Bowring for stating that there had been 70 illegitimate children born in Exeter in one year owing to the presence of a single regiment in 1211 that city. He felt bound under these circumstances to protest against the establishment of these military centres, which would spread immorality around them in every direction.
§ COLONEL BARTTELOT
observed that the plan of the right hon. Gentleman appeared to have undergone some modifications, and the modifications were no improvement on the original scheme. The scheme had been well canvassed by the public, and he could not say it was now so well received as it was when it was first introduced by the right hon. Gentleman. In the early part of the Session of 1870 the right hon. Gentleman had informed the House that we had never been so well prepared in a military sense as we were then, and yet shortly afterwards, in obedience to a panic, he had asked for 20,000 additional men, entailing a further expenditure on the country of £2,000,000. Here the same want of information might exist, and it might eventually turn out that we had not got regiments for each of the depôt centres, and in that case the cost of attempting to carry out this scheme would be entirely thrown away. With regard to billeting, while for his own part he quite agreed that it ought to be abolished, he could not help thinking that, if land had to be purchased for the proposed new centres, the proper business plan should be adopted of asking Parliament annually to vote as much money as was required, for then the House and the country would be able to ascertain whether the right hon. Gentleman intended to carry out his scheme in practice as he had shadowed it forth in theory.
§ MR. CARDWELL
said he had already stated that a circular had been sent out to the Militia officers to that effect.
§ COLONEL BARTTELOT
remarked that it would be necessary to press the matter still further in order to ensure the arrangement being carried into effect. With regard to the Volunteers, he thought it would be far better to order them to go out to the centres for four, six, or eight days successively every year, because then they would be known to the commanding officer of the depôt centre, and would know with whom they would have to act in case of emergency.
§ COLONEL BARTTELOT
was aware of that, but considered that it would not be 1212 sufficient to give the Volunteers permission to go, for unless the direction was enforced, more than two-thirds would not go. He wished to know how the right hon. Gentleman proposed to connect the Militia with the Line regiments at these depôt centres. But the main question was, whether the right hon. Gentleman could get an Army Reserve or not. The right hon. Gentleman at first proposed a three years' enlistment, and when he opposed it, the right hon. Gentleman was backed up by the Prime Minister. But now the right hon. Gentleman was enlisting men for six years in the Army and six in the Reserves. He (Colonel Barttelot) was told, however, that the men would prefer to enlist for a much longer period. He was further told that the men we were getting as recruits were an inferior class, such men as we wished to get rid of before. He had letters from officers stating that desertion was on the increase, and that many of the men who deserted from one regiment enlisted in another. He would like to see a Return of the number of men who had deserted, the number who had turned out bad soldiers, and the number who proved to be good. If the short enlistment scheme had failed, as he maintained it had, it would be for the House to say whether it was not better that this should be a tentative scheme, and that the money should be voted from year to year.
MR. GATHORNE HARDY
said, that the House was placed at a disadvantage in being asked to approve a Bill for a sum of money before they knew how it would be applied. As representing the University of Oxford, which had presented a memorial against the establishment of a depôt near that University, he wished to avail himself of this opportunity of protesting against such a plan being carried out upon the mere ipse dixit or decision of the right hon. Gentleman opposite. This was a subject of interest not merely to one town, but to the whole country. The House had recently determined to make the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge more national than they had hitherto been, and to open them to the whole youth of the country. If that was done, numbers of young men would be sent to the Universities whose discipline would require great care. When the right hon. Gentleman, therefore, spoke as he had done of the necessity 1213 of having married non-commissioned officers and married officers, he at once admitted that there were some difficulties connected with the establishment of these depôts, and that an extreme amount of discipline would be necessary. At present, Oxford University was wholly free from the kind of association which might be introduced by the establishment of a depôt. The right hon. Gentleman was aware that the deputation representing those who had been proctors in the University, which came to him, had assured him that even when the Militia were in the City for a short time it was almost impossible to maintain discipline in the University. It was, therefore, evident that if they brought into the neighbourhood of the University a set of young men—although they might be few in number—who lived in a different sphere, having other associations, and admitted to their fellowship those who were at the University, much difficulty would be experienced in preserving that good feeling which was essential to order in the University. He had no wish to make too much of this question, but he desired to call the attention of the right hon. Gentleman to the subject once more, in the hope that he would give an undertaking that he would not come to a final decision on the subject until the University had reassembled, or perhaps until Parliament had met again.
§ MR. PEASE
said, he was unable to approve of the proposal of the right hon. Gentleman, because he entertained a strong feeling with regard to the proposed establishment of a depôt in a division of a county which so far had been free from barracks as his own, and because he was unable cheerfully to assent to the grant of so large a sum as would be taken by this Bill, for the right hon. Gentleman had admitted that he could not secure for £3,500,000 the accommodation he had at first contemplated, and it was possible that he would not be able to obtain it for £4,500,000. Moreover, there was now in the country barrack accommodation for 135,000 men, and although the whole of it could not be recommended by military authorities, there must be a considerable margin remaining, which might be used for the purposes of this scheme, and in reduction of the amount in the Bill now before the House. It had been said that the object was the localization of regi- 1214 ments, which he supposed was the placing them in districts from which they were likely to be recruited. Now, he protested against that being likely to be the case, for the districts from which they were likely to be recruited were those in which the labour market was the lowest. No man could shut his eyes to the fact that wherever there were 90 per cent of men in a state of celibacy great demoralization must be the result, and the fact that 14,000 persons had petitioned against having a depôt at Sunderland was a proof that the feeling of the inhabitants was strongly opposed to the measure. He regretted to find that this monstrous military expenditure found so much favour with the Government, and believed that it would create a most uncomfortable feeling throughout the country against a Government which came into office professing totally different views.
§ SIR JOHN PAKINGTON
said, he was sorry that a Bill of such importance should be discussed at that late hour—nearly 1 o'clock. There was one thing, however, that he wished to say in particular upon the subject, which was that he entirely concurred in the objection of the hon. Member for Merthyr Tydvil (Mr. Richard) to the clause which saved soldiers who were the fathers of illegitimate children from the consequences to which others who did not belong to the Army and were the fathers of illegitimate children were subject. He deeply regretted that exemption. Such a measure ought not to be passed or rejected without full consideration. He must, however, be allowed to state that the Bill had not been objected to by Parliament. The plan had been proposed many months ago, and favourably received by the House, and he believed, notwithstanding what had been stated, that it was regarded favourably by the country also. As no one had thought proper to move that the Bill be read a second time that day six months, he did not see how the House could refuse to grant the money to carry out the plan to which it had assented. But he must be allowed to advert to one part of the policy of the Government from which he wholly dissented, and that was the colonial policy on which the Bill was partly founded. He did not himself like the policy of concentrating such large bodies of troops in this country, and he thought the time would soon come when 1215 there would be an outcry against it, but as the plan had been undertaken he thought the House could not do otherwise than vote the money necessary to carry it out.
§ MR. HOLMS moved the adjournment of the debate.
§ MR. CARDWELL
hoped the hon. Member would not persist in his Motion, for an adjourned debate on the Bill at this late period of the Session would be excessively inconvenient.
§ LORD EUSTACE CECIL
supported the Motion for adjournment. A Bill of such importance ought to have been introduced at an earlier date, so as to have afforded proper time for its discussion.
§ MR. SCLATER-BOOTH
also thought the House would be justified in insisting on an adjournment. He wished to know how the money required for the Bill was to be provided?
§ THE CHANCELLOR OF THE EXCHEQUER
said, his intention was to raise it out of the Balances without incurring any debt at all.
§ MR. RYLANDS
thought that if there was not sufficient time to discuss the Bill it should be thrown over to the next Session of Parliament. We were in no imminent danger, and therefore there could be no necessity for pressing the measure forward with such haste.
§ Motion agreed to.
§ Debate adjourned till To-morrow.