HC Deb 13 April 1896 vol 39 cc733-5
*SIR CHARLES DILKE (Gloucester, Forest of Dean)

I beg to ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether his attention has been called to recent decisions of the High Court of Justice in cases affecting Trades Unions, and particularly to a decision in the case of "Lyons v. Wilkins," arising out of a strike, and to a decision in Chambers in the case of Bailey and another v. Pye and others, arising out of a lock-out by the plaintiffs. Is he aware that injunctions have been granted restraining officers and members of Trades Unions from inducing persons not to enter into contracts; and that, in the first-named case, the Judge found that the pickets had not been guilty of intimidation; and that, in the second case, all charges of a breach of the law, brought in the Police Court against the defendants, had been dismissed by the Police Magistrate: And whether, seeing that the effect of these judgments is to prevent workmen on strike, or locked out, from using mere persuasion to induce their fellow workmen not to take work from the employers with whom the dispute has arisen, any further legislation on the subject is contemplated?

MR. E. H. PICKERSGILL (Bethnal Green, S. W.):

I beg to ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether, having regard to the great importance of the decision as affecting the relations between capital and labour, he will lay upon the Table Copies of the. Judgments of Mr. Justice North and of the Court of Appeal in the case of "Lyons and Sons v. Wilkins?"


My attention has been called to the decision of the Court of Appeal in the case of "Lyons v. Wilkins," but I have no information as to the other case mentioned by the right hon. Member. There can be no doubt as to the importance of the decision in the former case, but at present I have only seen a short summary of the case in a law journal and the report in The Times of March 19th, and I am advised that the consideration of the effect of the judgment given must await the full reports of the case in the usual legal publications, and probably, as the judgment was given on an application for an interim injunction, of the decision on the trial of the main action. It is, of course, possible also that the case may be carried on appeal to the House of Lords. It would be premature, therefore, for me to make any statement with regard to it at present. I may add here, in reply to the question of the hon. Member for Bethnal Green, that if authentic reports can be obtained, I can see no objection to their being laid on the Table of the House when the case is finished.