HC Deb 28 April 1884 vol 287 c736

asked the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, Whether his attention has been drawn to a prosecution under the Public Health Act instituted by the Board of Guardians at Mullingar against a millowner in that town named Scott; whether Colonel Cooper, J.P., an ex-officio member of the Board, opposed the prosecution, and declared that, in his opinion, the matter complained of by the sanitary officer of the Board was not a nuisance; whether, when the Guardians, at a subsequent meeting, came to consider the propriety of appealing from the decision of the local magistrate, Colonel Cooper again opposed the prosecution, and proposed an amendment to the resolution of the majority of the Board for that purpose; whether it is true that, notwithstanding this opposition and the fact of his being a member of the Board, which was plaintiff in the case, Colonel Cooper took a seat on the Bench with the County Court Judge on the hearing of the appeal, and by his vote nullified the judgment of the County Court Judge, and rendered the prosecution abortive; and, whether, if these facts be true, any representation will be made to the Lord Chancellor of Colonel Cooper's conduct on the occasion?


The facts appear to be as here stated. Colonel Cooper and the Chairman differed; and the case was adjourned till next Sessions. It was arranged that, in the meantime, the defendant should increase the height of the chimney, and change the fuel for his furnace. Mr. Cooper appears to have acted within his legal right in taking part in the adjudication, though it might have been more judicious, as he was the only magistrate sitting with the Judge, to have abstained from voting. It is not a case in which any representation should be made to the Lord Chancellor.


Does the right hon. Gentleman lay down that Colonel Cooper is at liberty, as a magistrate, to carry a job which he failed to carry as an ex officio Guardian?


said, it was a matter that rested with Colonel Cooper himself.