HC Deb 31 July 1894 vol 27 cc1368-9

Bill, as amended, considered.

MR. ERNEST SPENCER (West Bromwich)

rose to move, in Clause 15, page 6, line 7, to leave out— Or where merchandise is conveyed in a boat which does not pass through a lock on the canal to or from a railway basin or railway wharf the Company may charge a minimum toll of three shillings. He said, that the discussion would be materially shortened by the fact that an agreement had been arrived at by all the parties who were interested, and many questions would be thus avoided which otherwise would have been discussed at considerable length. He had placed Amendments on the Paper under the following circumstances. The Birmingham Canal traversed the whole of his constituency. It was, in fact, a waterway upon which the district had to depend very largely for the movements of goods therein manufactured. It was, therefore, of vital importance that the tolls and charges of the Company should not be in any way exorbitant, or press unduly on the trade of the district. With considerable alarm the traders some time ago saw that a proposal had been made by the Board of Trade in their Provisional Order under the powers of the Railway and Canal Act to fix a minimum, in the case of traffic carried short distances, of 1s. per boatload and 3s. if proceeding through a lock. This would mean in many cases a very material increase, and traders were sanguine enough to think it would not be passed by the Joint Committee—or, at worst, would be reduced. It was, therefore, with consternation and dismay—

Black Rod here attended with Message to attend the Lords Commissioners:—

The House went;—and being returned;

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