HC Deb 14 June 1888 vol 327 cc116-7
MR. BURT (Morpeth)

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department, Whether his attention has been called to complaints that persons who have acted as under managers of mines for many years have been refused certificates of service; whether it is true that in cases of refusal to grant such certificates no reason or explanation has been given to the applicant; and, whether, considering the dissatisfaction that exists and the interest that is taken in the subject, he will state the method of procedure and the principles that guide the Home Office in dealing with certificates of service?


Yes, Sir; I have received such complaints. In the first instance no reason for refusal is given; but if remonstrance is made the reasons are set forth in detail. I consider my duty to be limited to ascertaining whether the candidate possesses the statutory qualification—namely, whether he has exercised functions substantially corresponding to those of an under manager. I have no right to exercise any discretion as to whether the candidate is otherwise personally qualified. The method of procedure is to refer each application to the Inspector of the district, who reports to me whether, in fact, the candidate possesses the statutory qualification. The two main principles, speaking generally, by which I have been guided are—first, that the applicant shall have been next in authority to a certificated manager; and, secondly, that he shall have exercised control over a separate mine, or such part as might, under the Statute, have constituted a separate mine.