MR. BRYN ROBERTS (Carnarvonshire, Eifion)
I beg to ask the Attorney General whether he is aware that the officials of the Probate Registry in the cases of original wills written in Welsh decline to furnish office copies of such 1409 original wills when duly applied for upon a question arising as to the correctness of the translation filed at the Registry; whether on such a question arising it is permissible in construing a will written in Welsh to refer to the original; and whether he will take steps to secure an alteration of the Probate Registry so as to enable parties interested to obtain copies of original Welsh wills?
§ THE ATTORNEY GENERAL (Sir J. RIGBY,) Forfar
The original of a will in Welsh can always be seen at the Registry in which a translation has been proved. If a copy of a Welsh will, a translation of which has been proved in the principal Registry, were required the party requiring it would be permitted to copy it himself, or to send a competent person to take a copy. An office copy under seal of the Court of an original will in Welsh would not be given, because probate is not granted of such original will, but of the translation which is attached to the original. No difficulty has been occasioned in practice; applications of the sort are extremely rare. With reference to the question whether it is permissible, in construing a will written in Welsh, to refer to the original, I think there is some little doubt on the matter, but the better course would be to bring the question of translation before the Probate Court, and if necessary have it corrected there. I have no jurisdiction whatsoever to procure any alteration of the practice of the Probate Registry on any point, and I cannot undertake therefore to take such steps as are suggested in the question.