HC Deb 16 May 1887 vol 315 cc65-6

asked the First Lord of the Treasury, If his attention has been called to the following Resolution, said to have been unanimously passed by the Upper House of Convocation of the Province of Canterbury, and to the debate thereon, reported in The Times of the 11th May— That the President be requested to apply for the assenting license of the Crown for making a canon to enlarge and re-arrange the representation of the clergy of the Province of Canterbury in Convocation, in conformity with the annexed table. The table is to consist of four columns, detailing respectively the dioceses, the archdeaconries, the number of proctors at present, and the number proposed, and to the statement of the proposer of the Resolution that it— Was adopted in order to avoid the interference of a secular Parliament; whether it is true, as stated in the course of debate, that there is no precedent for the course proposed; and, whether Government, before granting the application, or assenting to any other course calculated or intended to impair or question the supremacy of Parliament, will give this House an opportunity of considering the subject?

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

I have had my attention called to the Resolution to which the hon. and learned Member refers; but, up to the present time, no application of the nature involved in the proposition referred to has been made to the Crown. If it is made, it will receive the serious consideration of Her Majesty's Government; and no course will be taken by the Government which will impair or question the authority of Parliament, as defined and laid down by Statute.