HC Deb 30 June 1884 vol 289 cc1677-8

asked the Secretary to the Treasury, Whether, as much dissatisfaction is expressed by the free miners of the Forest of Dean with the interference with their rights and privileges contemplated in the Dean Forest and Hundred of St. Briavels Bill, Her Majesty's Government will appoint a Commission, to carry out a local inquiry into the nature and value of those rights before proceeding further with the said Bill?


My bon. and gallant Friend will remember that, in answer to a former Question put by him, I spoke of the Dean Forest Bill rather as a scheme embodying equitable principles of settlement than as one to be insisted upon in its details; and I may say that I have always thought that in the absence of agreement Parliament could scarcely be expected to fix the amount of compensation to be given to the free miners. It is now evident that an agreement cannot be easily established; and among the means of settlement of the question a Commission is perhaps the most promising. The Government will at once consider the expediency of appointing such a Commission.