HC Deb 18 March 1879 vol 244 c1151

asked Mr. Chancellor of the Exchequer, Whether it is the fact that, in the case of Martin v. Mackonochie, the judge against whose decision the appeal is made, but who has no personal interest in the action, has been permitted to appear by Counsel as a party in the suit; whether the Treasury has instructed the Solicitor General to appear accordingly; whether it is proposed to pay the costs out of the public purse; and, whether there is any precedent for such a course or for such an application of the public funds?


, in reply, said, it was true that the Judge in question (Lord Penzance) had been permitted to appear by counsel as a party in the suit. The permission, he presumed, was granted by the Court before which the proceedings took place; but, of course, that was a matter over which the Government had no control. The Treasury had instructed him (the Attorney General) to appear on Lord Penzance's behalf in accordance with the directions of the Lord Chancellor and the Home Secretary. It was proposed that the costs should be paid out of the public purse. He believed it was in accordance with usual practice that when there arose any question as to the jurisdiction of one Court over another, although the Judge, who had no personal interest in the matter, was expected to appear, the charge was borne by the Government. There was, of course, no direct precedent in the present case, because Lord Penzance's Court was of very recent creation.