HC Deb 09 August 1887 vol 318 cc1728-31
MR. CHILDERS (Edinburgh, S.)

wished to ask the First Lord of the Treasury a Question on this subject. He understood the present arrangement to be that on Thursday they should take Supply till 10 o'clock, and then go to the Allotments Bill, and that on Friday they should take Supply again. Would the right hon. Gentleman object to take Supply on Thursday till the usual hour, and let the Allotments Bill stand first on the Orders for Friday?

THE FIRST LORD OF THE TREASURY (Mr. W. H. SMITH) (Strand, Westminster)

, in reply, said, that the arrangement was made after every effort had been made on his part to ascertain what would be for the convenience of the House on both sides, and he had been led to believe that there would not be a very protracted debate on the second reading of the Allotments Bill. Under these circumstances, he thought it necessary to adhere to the arrangement to take the Bill about 10 o'clock on Thursday evening; and as regarded Friday, he must retain a certain amount of discretion, as it was possible the Government might have to consider any Amendments which the House of Lords might make in the Irish Land Law Bill. If it were in their power to do so, he should like to take the Education Vote on Friday as the first Business; but it might be necessary to hold themselves at liberty to consider any Lords' Amendments in the Irish Land Law Bill on that evening.

MR. MUNDELLA (Sheffield, Brightside)

asked, whether the Technical Instruction Bill could not be taken earlier than 11 o'clock that evening?


said, it was equally important for the country and the Government that Supply should be proceeded with. If the Scotch Votes in Classes II. and III., which had been put down for the convenience of Scotch Members, were disposed of before 10 o'clock they might then report Progress and take the Technical Instruction Bill.


asked, whether, considering the impossibility of keeping Scotch Members together, and the impropriety of allowing important Scotch questions to be decided by a few Scotch Members who might happen to be in the House at 3 o'clock in the morning, and, considering that all Scotch Members would soon be going out of town, except those who had nowhere else to go, the First Lord of the Treasury would move the suspension of the Standing Orders, so that the Scotch Business should be taken in the early forenoon of the day, say 10 or 11 o'clock? [An hon. MEMBER: Why not 8 o'clock?] He also asked whether, in order to dispose of Scotch Bills in Committee, another Gentleman might not be appointed to share the labours of the Chairman of Committees?


The hon. Gentleman was kind enough to send me Notice a few minutes ago of this Question. I am unable to agree with him in the opinion he has expressed as to Scotch Members. My observation of the conduct of Scotch Members leads me to believe that it is not at all impossible to keep them in the House while Scotch Business or Imperial Business of any importance is being discussed. That disposes of the principal grounds on which he asks the Government to make an arrangement which, I believe, the House itself would not accept, and that is to impose duties upon the House, and on the officers of the House, which it is quite impossible for them to adequately and properly fulfil. I believe the Scotch Bills to be of sufficient importance to secure consideration; and I have complete confidence that both Scotch and English Members will remain for Scotch Business and Imperial Business.

MR. BUCHANAN (Edinburgh, W.)

asked, when the Scotch Education Vote would be taken?


said, much must depend on the time occupied by the English Education Vote. It was open to consideration whether they should not have a Morning Sitting on Friday for the English Education Vote; but having regard to the fact that he was not fully informed as to what might happen in "another place," he was not in a position absolutely to say what the arrangement of Business would be in the event of a morning being taken with the English Education Vote first. He hoped, when that Vote was disposed of, time would remain for the consideration of the Scotch Vote.

In reply to Sir GEORGE CAMPBELL,


said, he must appeal to the House itself to forward Public Business, so that it might not be necessary to sit into these very late hours. The Government were most anxious that Business should be done within reasonable hours; but if the consideration of the Votes in Supply or of Bills was so protracted that it became absolutely necessary to sit till 2 or 3 in the morning in order that Business might be concluded he could not charge himself with any responsibility respecting it.


gave Notice that he would put down Amendments to the Scotch Bills so as to make sure that they would not come on at a late hour.

MR. DIXON-HARTLAND (Middlesex, Uxbridge)

asked, whether it was still the intention of the Government to take the Post Office Annuities Bill on Friday night?


I hope it may be possible to do so.


asked, if the right hon. Gentleman could name the date upon which the Indian Budget would be submitted?



MR. LABOUCHERE (Northampton)

What facilities does the First Lord of the Treasury contemplate giving to the House for the discussion of matters respecting Egypt?


Facilities will, no doubt, be afforded on the Diplomatic Vote.


Is the right I hon. Gentleman not aware that upon the Diplomatic Vote it would be absolutely impossible to go into the matter?


If that is so I will consider the question, if the hon. Member will put down a Question.


said, there would be great loss of time if they had two discussions—one on the Vote and one afterwards.


I shall be glad to meet the convenience of hon. Members: but it must be obvious that it is impossible to give precedence to any particular Vote.


said, he was not asking for precedence for any particular Vote, He wanted to know when they could have facilities, with the Speaker in the Chair, for discussing Egyptian affairs?


Obviously it is not in my power to give facilities, with the Speaker in the Chair, for the discussion of the Diplomatic Vote; but I will consider whether a separate opportunity can be afforded.

In reply to Mr. JAMES STUART (Shoreditch, Hoxton),


said, that the Navy Estimates would not be taken until the Civil Service Estimates had been gone through. He hoped that they might be reached next week.