HC Deb 21 July 1881 vol 263 cc1456-7

asked the President of the Local Government Board, Whether his attention has been directed to the failure of the high-service water supply of the Grand Junction Company; and, if so, whether he purposes taking any steps in the matter?


Sir, my attention has been directed to this subject, not only in my official capacity, but as a private victim. As already explained in "another place," Colonel Bolton, the Water Examiner under the Metropolis Water Acts, was requested on Monday last to ascertain the cause of some individual complaints that had reached the Board, and I was informed by him that the failure referred to was attributable to the excessive demand for road watering and private use for gardens, &c. Moreover, this was aggravated by the bursting of a main, which was repaired with the least possible delay. I have since requested Colonel Bolton to make a more complete inquiry into the arrangements of the Company for meeting the demands upon them; but I have not yet got his Report. In order to prevent misapprehension, it should be stated that the Local Government Board have no power to deal with mere individual cases of complaint, in which application can be made to a magistrate. It is only when they receive a Memorial from not less than 20 inhabitant householders of a defective supply that they can take any effective remedial action, and oven then they must appoint a person to hold a special inquiry before they can give a notice to the Company to remedy the defect. This will render the Company liable to the penalty of £200, and the subsequently accruing penalty of £100 a month in case of continued default.