HC Deb 16 June 1874 vol 219 cc1741-4

Order for Consideration, as amended read.

Motion made, and Question proposed "That the Bill be now taken into Con sideration."—(Mr. W. M. Torrens.)


said, it was an unusual course to go into Committee on a Bill on the very day that the reprint was distributed to hon. Members. It was impossible that people in the country could have seen it. The Scotch societies were to hold a meeting yesterday, and he was waiting information as to the result at which they had arrived. They seemed to have some Amendments to suggest, and he therefore proposed that the Bill should be postponed till Friday.

Amendment proposed, to leave out the word "now," and at the end of the Question to add the words "upon Friday next."—(Mr. Anderson.)


objected to the postponement. The Bill had gone through the ordeal of a Select Committee, and the Scotch societies must be well informed of its provisions.


said, the Government had inserted a provision respecting stamp duty on mortgages to building societies, which he objected to. If that provision were withdrawn, he would not object to the Bill being at once proceeded with.


remarked that the Bill would be most valuable to building societies, and he must oppose the Motion.


said, he had no hostile Amendment to propose, nor did he wish to obstruct the progress of the Bill. All he desired was a few days' delay, in order to enable him to communicate with persons in Scotland interested in the measure, and he thought there was nothing unreasonable in his request. He would press it to a division.

Question put, "That the word 'now' stand part of the Question."

The House divided:

The Tellers being come to the Table, Mr. Rowland Winn, one of the Tellers for the Noes, stated that Mr. Dodds, Member for Stockton, had not voted, though he had been in the House when the Question was put:—"Whereupon Mr. Speaker directed the honourable Member for Stockton to come to the Table, and asked him if he had heard the Question put; and the honourable Member having stated that he had heard the Question put (but had been accidentally locked out of the Left Lobby), and the honourable Member having declared himself with the Noes, Mr. Speaker directed his name to be added to the Noes.

The Tellers accordingly declared the numbers Ayes 97; Noes 22: Majority 75.

Bill considered.

Clause 41 (Exemption from stamp duty).


proposed an Amendment, the effect of which was to continue in favour of building societies the exemption which had existed from the first formation of those societies with regard to stamp duty on mortgages, whatever the amount might be. The Government sought to do away with this exemption without consulting with these societies, who had nothing to thank the Government for in bringing forward this Bill.

Amendment proposed, in page 13, line 12, after the word "member," to insert the words "nor any mortgage or assurance, nor any discharge or reconveyance of any security."—(Mr. Dodds.)


said, it was natural that the building societies and their friends should desire to get as many exemptions as possible, but these exemptions were of an exceptional and, generally speaking, objectionable character; and, primâ facie, it was necessary to make out some strong ground for exemptions from duties which fell on the rest of the community. The exemptions in question were originally given to encourage these societies, which now, however, had assumed a different position, and did not require the staff on which they leant formerly. Under this Bill, which placed them in a far more advantageous position than they had ever previously occupied, the general argument against exemptions applied still more strongly. He could not therefore assent to the Amendment of the hon. Gentleman.


, on the part of one society, said, the stamp duty was an insignificant matter, and the Bill being a valuable one, might well be passed as it was without any alteration.

Question put, "That those words be there inserted."

The House divided:—Ayes 14; Noes 86; Majority 72.

Bill to be read the third time upon Friday.