§ MR. DIXON-HARTLAND (Middlesex, Uxbridge)
asked the Secretary to the Treasury, Whether the Commissioners of Woods and Forests have given a Mr. Constable permission to build a permanent boat-house, composed of concrete, brick, timber, &c. on the Hampton Parish Recreation Ground, which will materially obstruct the view of one of the most beautiful reaches on the Thames, and prevent the construction of the riverside terrace which the parish desire to construct; whether, it is a fact that the land (until the year 1881) had been used by the parishioners, from time immemorial, for purposes of recreation, pasturing sheep, &c.; and that, in 1881, the Local Government Board let such land at £1 per annum to the Rural Sanitary Authority, who enclosed it with an expensive iron fence at the cost of the parish, with a view to prevent further encroachments; whether the Crown claim it as "waste of the manor," or as "Crown land;" and whether they simply claim the portion between the high road and the Thames Conservancy boundary posts and stones; or whether they claim all the ground between the 402 road and the water's edge; on what grounds they claim the right to give Mr. Constable permission to build a permanent boat-house, and thus monopolize the greater portion of the "Deeps;" what inquiries, if any, were made, before permission was granted, as to the desirability of the site for the purpose, and as to the views of the ratepaying inhabitants on the subject; whether, if no such inquiries were made, he will now direct such inquiries on those points before any further progress is allowed with the building, which is being pushed on as fast as possible; and, on what terms and tenure does Mr. Constable hold his two large floating boat-houses, and his grant for the erection of the permanent annexe?
§ THE SECRETARY (Mr. JACKSON) (Leeds, N.)
I am informed that the Commissioners of Woods and Forests have given Mr. Constable permission to build a boat-house of timber on land belonging to the Crown at Hampton; but that it will not materially obstruct the view or prevent the construction of the riverside terrace. The answer to the second paragraph of the Question is in the affirmative. The Crown claims as "waste of the manor" all the ground between the road and the water's edge. The boat-house is believed to meet a public want; and, therefore, no special inquiries were made before permission was granted, and it is now too late to make such inquiries. Mr. Constable holds his two existing boat-houses under a lease of 1880 upon a yearly tenancy, determinable at one month's notice, at a rent of £2 per annum, Mr. Constable to remove the floating-house on determination of the tenancy. In respect of the new addition, he is to pay an additional rent of £3 per annum. The buildings are to be approved by the Commissioner of Woods, and are not to rise above the existing buildings; and he is to remove the new building and level the land on one month's notice from the Commissioner of Woods.
§ MR. DIXON-HARTLAND
asked, whether the hon. Gentleman was aware that Mr. Constable was erecting a brick building which took up the whole of the river-path, so that no walk could be made?