HC Deb 10 March 1887 vol 311 cc1868-70

(Sir John Lubbock, Mr. Dalrympte, Sir Charles Forster, Mr. Houldsworth, Mr. Reid, Sir Albert Rollit, Mr. Salt.)


Order for Second Reading read.

SIR JOHN LUBBOCK (London University)

I beg to move the second reading of this Bill, which has for its object the extension to other parts of the country of the provisions of the Metropolitan Open Spaces Act. In many places throughout the country there are open spaces arising from burying grounds disused, which have fallen into anything but a creditable condition, and which it would be well for the neighbourhood to have kept in proper order, for the recreation of inhabitants of the town. But it has been decided, legally, that the expense of keeping such space in order must fall upon the rates of the particular parish in which the ground is situated, although there may be more than one parish interested. In Walsall, for example, there is such a disused burial ground, and it is felt that it would be an advantage to the town if such were kept in order; the Corporation are willing to undertake the duty of keeping it so, if they had authority for so doing, which, at present, they have not. Under the present state of the law it rests with the parish. The same difficulty was continually felt in the Metropolis, before it was put an end to by the Act of 1881. Experience of that Act is most satisfactory: it has been attended with much public advantage; and, especially under the auspices of the Public Gardens Association, many disused burying grounds have been put into order, and serve as pleasant gardens. In many towns the need of such an Act is much felt, whereby, at a small outlay, the Municipal Authorities may keep in neatness and order burying grounds that have fallen into a state of neglect. I hope the House will agree to the second reading of this Bill, which will enable disused burial grounds to be kept in proper order at very slight expense, and to the general advantage of the ratepayers. I now beg to move the second reading.

Motion made, and Question proposed, "That the Bill be now read a second time."—(Sir John Lubbock.)

DR. TANNER (Cork Co., Mid)

I may explain that I had blocked this Bill earlier, and I did so in consequence of finding a similar Bill for Ireland had been blocked by Members from both sides of the House. It was, therefore, not for the purpose of interposing with any factious opposition to the principle of the Bill that I did so. The principle of the Bill I believe to be a thoroughly good one, and one that I should wish to promote by every means in my power. I make this personal explanation to show that my action was solely in consequence of the treatment of the Irish Bill.

MR. T. M. HEALY (Longford, N.)

I am glad my hon. Friend has withdrawn his block against this Bill; we must now do our best, when the Bill reaches its Committee stage, to endeavour to apply to Ireland the principle which, with all their Unionist proclivities, Tory Members would deny us.

Question put, and agreed to.

Bill read a second time, and committed for Monday next.

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