HC Deb 27 August 1889 vol 340 c592

I beg to ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether his attention has been called to the organised system of intimidation which prevails in connection with the wharves on the Thames; and, whether he will direct the police to give protection to those who are engaged there in legitimate business?


I am not prepared to admit that there is anything which can properly be described as an organised system of intimidation. There is, however, a considerable amount of pressure exercised, which in some cases passes into acts of intimidation, but of a nature very difficult for the police to interfere with. A large body of Metropolitan Police is on duty in the neighbourhood of the docks; a steam launch has been directed to patrol the river; and the police have orders to render all the assistance in their power when applied to. I wish to take this opportunity of expressing an earnest hope that both the parties to this dispute, which is causing great in convenience and damage to the trade of London and to many persons wholly unconnected with the docks, may be induced to compose their differences by some rational and satisfactory mode of settlement.