§ MR. J. HEYWOOD JOHNSTONE (Sussex, Horsham)
I beg to ask the hon. Member for Stoke-upon-Trent, as Ecclesiastical Commissioner, whether the Church Estates Commissioners have 185 sanctioned an application by the Vicar of Cowfold, Sussex, to let on building leases a portion of the glebe which, since the year 1804 has been let as allotment gardens to the occupiers of a row of cottages directly opposite, and standing on a narrow piece of ground between the road and the churchyard; whether a petition against the granting of such application has been presented to the Commissioners and to the Bishop of London (the patron of the living), signed by the county and district councillors representing the parish, all the members of the parish council, the church wardens, and almost all the owners and ratepayers of the parish; and whether, under these circumstances, the Commissioners will withhold their consent from the proposed building scheme, or from so much of it as will deprive the occupiers of those cottages of the privilege which they have so long enjoyed of renting allotment gardens which are virtually necessary for the enjoyment of their houses?
§ MR. G. LEVESON-GOWER (Stoke-upon-Trent)
A proposal has been submitted for letting upon building leases certain portions of the glebe of Cowfold, Sussex, having a frontage to the village street. The Ecclesiastical Commissioners, with the concurrence of the patron, cannot withhold their sanction if they are satisfied, after a full consideration of the circumstances, that the proposal will conduce to the permanent advantage of the benefice. The Commissioners will doubtless suggest that other suitable land shall be found for the allottees before they are disturbed.