§ MR. LABOUCHERE (Northampton)
I beg to move "That the Order [24th February] that the Richmond Footbridge (Lock, &c.) Bill be committed, be read and discharged." This is a Bill similar to the one we have been discussing, which has been referred to a Hybrid Committee. Technically, it is a Private Bill, but it embraces important public interests. I am certainly surprised that there should be any opposition to my proposal, because, upon applying to the Board of Trade, the Secretary of the Board said that not only was there no objection on the part of the Board, but, on the contrary, they thought it was desirable that this action should be taken. My proposition is that the Bill should be referred to a Hybrid Committee of seven Members, four to be nominated by the House, and three by the Committee of Selection. I hope that 1254 the opposition will not be persisted in. If it is, I shall certainly take the sense of the House upon it.
§ MR. DIXON-HARTLAND (Middlesex, Uxbridge)
I am at a loss to understand upon what ground this proposal is made. It is an ordinary Bill, and should be sent. to an ordinary and not to a Special Committee. The Motion of the hon. Member would exclude a number of the resident parishioners from being heard upon the Bill, and if the Bill be sent to a Hybrid Committee I think it will be necessary to secure that they should be heard. I shall, therefore, oppose the Motion of the hon. Gentleman, in order that the Bill should be sent to an ordinary Committee.
§ MR. LABOUCHERE
I only wish to explain that although the Bill is described as a Footbridge Bill, it is really a Bill for the construction of a lock, and to authorise the damming up of the River Thames.
§ (3.35.) The House divided:—Ayes, 100; Noes 106.—(Div. List, No. 57.)
Motion made, and Question proposed,
That all Petitions against the said Bill already presented, or which may he presented not later than three clear days before the sitting of the Committee, he referred to the Committee, and that such of the Petitioners as pray to be heard by themselves, or by their counsel, a gouts, and witnesses, be heard upon their Petitions, if they think fit, and counsel heard in favour of the Bill against such Petitions."—(Mr. Octavius V. Morgan.)
§ MR. LABOUCHERE
I really feel bound to oppose this Motion, and I must point out to hon. Gentlemen opposite that they have got themselves into a nice mess, seeing that they have been voting against the express wish of their own Board of Trade. As the House have refused to appoint a Hybrid Committee, and the Bill has to be referred to an ordinary Committee, and as one of the arguments used against my proposal was 1255 that if a Hybrid Committee were appointed it would involve an increased expenditure, owing to the large number of people who would go before it, I wish to point out that, if the present proposal is adopted, it would open the door to every Tom, Dick, and Harry, and that the Committee would have to sit for the next two months.
§ MR. DIXON-HARTLAND
I would propose to omit from the Resolution the words, "subject to the Rules, Orders, and proceedings of this House." If those words, are retained a number of persons will be left out.
MR. DEPUTY SPEAKER
The question before the House is not the Motion of the hon. Member for Northampton, but that which stands in the name of the hon. Member for Battersea (Mr. O. V. Morgan).
§ MAJOR BANES (West Ham,S.)
In the interests of an important part of London, I beg to support the Motion.
§ *MR. CHILDERS (Edinburgh, S.)
I must appeal to the loader of the House not to sanction this Motion. As the Bill is to be referred to an ordinary and not to a Hybrid Committee, its proceedings must be governed by the Standing Orders of the House, and they would have to be suspended before the Motion could be put.
§ *THE FIRST LORD OF THE TREASURY (Mr. W. H. SMITH,) Strand, Westminster
I think that we ought to be careful to observe the rules and orders of the House, and, under the circumstances of the case, I hope the hon. Member for Battersea will consent to the adjournment of the Debate, so that it may be ascertained whether the Motion is in accordance with the Standing Orders.
§ Question, "That the Debate be now adjourned," put, and agreed to.
§ Debate adjourned till Monday next.