§ SIR WILFRID LAWSON (Cumberland, Cockermouth)
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department, Whether he can state if the report in the Margate newspaper, Keble's Gazette, of April 9th is correct, in which report it is stated that the Margate Licensed Victuallers' Protection Society held their annual dinner at the Cliftonville Hotel on the previous Thursday, at which festivity the chairman of the evening was supported by Colonel King-Harman, M.P.; that, as the evening advanced, and—As an extension of time had not been obtained, Colonel King-Harman at this stage asked the company to become his guests, and the chairman vacated his seat;and that, eventually,the company separated shortly before midnight;and, whether he can inform the Honse if the police have taken any notice, intend to take any notice, or ought to take any notice, of these proceedings?
§ THE UNDER SECRETARY OF STATE (Mr. STUART-WORTLEY) (Sheffield, Hallam)
(who replied) said: The Secretary of State has received a letter from my right hon. and gallant Friend, who tells him that the facts are as stated in the Question. The landlord had forgotten to ask for an extension of time; and at five minutes to 11 o'clock, as there was still a portion of a musical programme to be completed, my right hon. and gallant Friend was informed that it was competent for him, as a resident in the hotel, to invite all or any of the party to remain as his guests, which he did. The subsequent proceedings lasted about half an hour. The head of the Margate Police was in the room, and made no suggestion of illegality. The Secretary of State has no control over the local police. He is not aware whether they have taken, or intend to take, any notice of this occurrence. Any complaint as to their conduct should be addressed to the Local Authorities.