HC Deb 21 May 1896 vol 41 cc85-6

asked the Under Secretary of State for War whether, having regard to the statement of the First Lord of the Treasury that no contentious Bills would be taken before Whitsuntide, and that there were still some points in the Manœuvres Bill to be disposed of, he would consider whether any modification of the Bill could be made to enable it to pass as a non-contentious Measure?


I have carefully examined the Amendments to the Manœuvres Bill still undisposed of, and find that, with two or three exceptions, they can practically be met by the Government. The Bill is in no sense a Party one, and, seeing its urgency, I have offered, on any disputed points in the Bill, to accept such provisions as the Leaders of the Opposition may consider sufficient for the protection of the localities in which the manœuvres are held, provided the Bill is treated as non-contentious and allowed to pass at once. Hon. Members will see that we are placing ourselves in the hands of the House solely in order to obtain for the troops the training which the military authorities consider essential for them, and I cannot help hoping that some agreement may be arrived at, and the money already voted by Parliament for manœuvres utilised. [Cheers.]