HC Deb 01 April 1890 vol 343 cc406-7
MR. PICKERSGILL (Bethnal Green, S.W.)

I beg to ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether his attention has been drawn to the terms of an agreement between Thompson and Bedford Company, Limited, as representing American producers of paraffin, on the one part, and the Scottish Mineral Oil Association on the other part, limiting the production and fixing the price, and imposing other restrictions on the sale of the materials necessary for the manufacture of candles within the United Kingdom, and establishing a differential charge of "not less than ½d. per lb." against all candle-makers who are not members of the Candlemakers' Association and do not maintain minimum prices of 4s. 4d. and 4s. 6d. per dozen pounds, and also providing that The minimum prices herein agreed to are only binding until 30th June, after which they may be raised but not lowered; whether he is aware that all the leading candle makers of the United Kingdom, with one exception, have been coerced into submission to the conditions of this agreement; and whether, having regard to the judgment of Lord Esher in the recent case of the "Mogul Steamship Company v. M'Grigor," he will bring the matter under the notice of the Public Prosecutor, in order that the opinion of the Law Officers may be taken as to whether the facts would justify a prosecution as for an indictable public wrong?


This is a question which ought to be put to my hon. and learned Friend the Attorney General.