§ VISCOUNT CRANBORNE (Rochester:)
I beg to ask the Vice President of the Committee of Council on Education whether his attention has been called to the opinion of the hon. Member for the Isle of Wight and Mr. Edwardes Jones, that the Order in Council of 12th December 1894, as to the Berriew Scheme, was made contrary to the Act of Parliament, and whether it will be at once withdrawn?
§ THE VICE-PRESIDENT OF THE COUNCIL (Mr. A. H. D. ACLAND, York, W.R., Rotherham)
I have been furnished by the noble Lord with what is no doubt the essential part of the opinion alluded to. If there is no objection I should be glad to see the case and the opinion. I have mentioned in an earlier answer that the action taken was based, upon precedent, including the case of Dauntsey under the late Government, and that the matter was not referred to me. I propose now to refer the whole matter to the Law Officers, and if it should appear that the practice has been taken in error by this and previous Governments, I will take the best advice as to whether rectification is possible, and, if so, by what means.
§ VISCOUNT CRANBORNE
remarked that the time when the Vote on Account was to be taken was very close, and he was afraid it would be impossible for him to forego the opportunity that Vote would afford of raising the question. Would the right hon. Gentleman say how soon he expected the reply of the Law Officers would be given?
§ MR. ACLAND
said he would refer the question to the Law Officers as soon as possible, and he expected they would reply as speedily as they could.