HC Deb 24 June 1884 vol 289 c1236

asked the Vice President of the Committee of Council, Whether it is a fact that, in cases where ratepayers feel aggrieved by a decision of the Educational Department, and demand a public inquiry, that the Educational Department, previous to authorising such inquiry, require a bond of indemnity against the expenses of such inquiry to the amount of £300; and, if so, whether, since the imposition of so stringent an obligation is calculated to discourage local inquiry, he could take steps to prevent persons interested being deterred from obtaining a full and fair investigation of their grievances?


Under Section 9 of the Act of 1870 ratepayers who are not satisfied to provide the accommodation required by the Education Department may demand a public inquiry. In such cases Section 73 of the Act authorizes the Education Department to make an order directing the costs of the proceedings to be paid by the district, or by the applicants for the inquiry, and may, if the Department think fit, require the applicants to give security for the costs of the inquiry. This security has been always required when the Department are not satisfied that the costs should be thrown upon the district. Of course, the hon. Member understands that the £300 mentioned is a more nominal sum.