§ MR. CUNINGHAME GRAHAM (Lanark, N.W.)
I beg to ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if it is a fact that meetings of Socialists have been suppressed in Archer Street, Westbourne Grove, by the police; if it is a fact that religious meetings are held on the same spot and are not disturbed; if any charge of riot, intimidation, or obstruction has been brought against the promoters of the aforesaid Socialist meetings; and if any of the householders in the district have complained of these meetings?
§ THE SECRETARY OF STATE FOR THE HOME DEPARTMENT (MR. MATTHEWS, Birmingham, E.)
I am informed by the Commissioner of Police that two meetings of Socialists were held, or attempted to be held, near Archer Street. As such meetings caused obstruction and disorder in the thoroughfare, the police dispersed the first meeting and moved on those who attempted to hold the second. Small religious meetings, not causing obstruction or disorder, have been held at the same place for years, but latterly I am informed that they have been discontinued owing to the action of the Socialists. The police did not bring any charges against the Socialists, as the meetings dispersed quietly. There has been no complaint from the householders. The police must judge, according to the circumstances of each case, whether obstruction is caused or not.