HC Deb 28 March 1895 vol 32 cc337-8
CAPTAIN NORTON (Newington, W.)

I beg to ask the Secretary to the Treasury whether the contract entered into by the Government with Messrs. Waterlow and Sons Limited for printing and publishing The parliamentary Debates is not the form of contract upon which tenders were submitted by other firms who were desirous of carrying out the work?


Messrs. Waterlow and Sons' tender for printing and publishing The Parliamentary Debates, which forms the basis of the contract granted to them, was made on the same form as those upon winch tenders were submitted by other firms who were desirous of carrying out the work. The only difference of substance between the form of tender and the contract as ultimately granted was to enable the Government, should it be desirable, to close the contract before, the expiry of three years. The other variations between the contract and the tender are verbal only.


inquired whether the following words did not occur in the contract entered into with Messrs. Waterlow and Sons Limited: "Connected with the composition, printing, and binding;" whether this did not alter the whole character of the agreement, and whether it did not enable the firm to sublet the reporting to The Times, thereby infringing the Resolution passed in the House of Commons in February 1891, and re-affirmed in March 1893.


said, his hon. Friend was under an entire misapprehension. There was a section in the tender which stated that the contractors might obtain the report of the Debates in the way they could be got. The only clause with respect to the Resolution of the House of Commons had reference to the printing and binding. The tender was exactly on the same lines that the tenders had been for a number of years past; no change was made; it was exactly on all fours with those of previous years.

MR. W. JOHNSTON (Belfast, S.)

asked the right hon. Gentleman if he had heard any complaint as to the character of the Reports, and if they were not very satisfactory?


said, he had not heard any complaint, and he assumed from that circumstance that the Reports were satisfactory.

MR. W. FIELD (Dublin, St. Patrick's)

asked if it was not the fact that the words complained of by the hon. Member were not in the original contract?


said, that he would be glad to show the hon. Member both the tender and the contract, when he would see that the words were practically the same in both documents.

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