HC Deb 05 July 1897 vol 50 cc1109-11
CAPTAIN NORTON (Newington, W.)

I beg to ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether it has been brought to his notice that the constables of the Metropolitan Police Force did nearly four days' duty in overtime during the period of the Diamond Jubilee; whether it is proposed to give only ordinary pay for the extra time worked, whereas it is customary with workmen to receive at least a time and a-half rate for extra service of this kind, which was most arduous and exhausting, some item having had only a few hours' sleep out, of 24; whether be will consider the, advisability of a least granting extra leave, pay going on, to added to the annual leave, as is have been done upon three previous occasions, and on a far more generous seale than in the present case, considering the severity of the service rendered; and whether members of the Force, in possession of the 1887 Jubilee medal, will receive the 1897 medal, and not a clasp, to which they do not attach the same value?


I have already informed the House of the manner in which the services of the police on Jubilee Day are to be recognised, and I have nothing to add to lay previous statement except that I ascertained that tin; men preferred extra pay to extra leave, and that I made my decision in accordance with their wishes.


I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland whether he is aware that Inspector Brewster, of the Dublin Metropolitan Police, who was in charge of the police in Rutland Square, Dublin, on the 22nd of June, Her Majesty's Jubilee Day, swore at the inquest of Mrs. Fitzsimmons, whose death resulted from injuries received in a baton charge, that he did not order the charge, and would not have done so under the circumstances; whether he is aware that the charge was ordered by a subordinate officer, Inspector Lynam, without consulting or obtaining the sanction of his superior officer, Inspector Brewster, who was within three yards of him at the time; and whether the Government propose to hold a sworn Inquiry into the conduct of the police in connection with the occurrence in. Rutland Square?


The substance of Inspector Brewster's evidence before the Coroner in this case is not correctly given in the Question. Before the police used their truncheons there was a consultation between Inspector Brewster and Inspector Lynam, and shortly after the consultation, when the Inspectors were separated by a surging crowd, a shower of stones fell and Inspector Lynam's men were driven back. It was at this juncture that the police were ordered by Inspector Lynam to disperse the mob, and Inspector Brewster stated in evidence that if he had been in Inspector Lynam's position he would have done what the latter did, as he believed every policeman's life was at the moment in danger. The Inspectors were separated, as I have stated, by a surging crowd and each had to act independently and on his own responsibility; they are of the same rank and inspector Brewster, though senior, was not Inspector Lynam's superior officer. The action of the police was fully gone into at the inquest, and the Government see no reason to hold a sworn Inquiry as suggested.

SIR ELLIOT LEES (Birkenhead)

I beg to ask the Under Secretary of State for War whether the Secretary of State will convey to those responsible for the transport of Members to and from the Review Ground at Aldershot, on 'Thursday, and for their comfort on the ground, the satisfaction which was generally felt at the excellence of the arrangements?


It has been a great gratification to the Secretary of State to know that the arrangements for the review, which entailed very heavy labour on the War Department, have proved satisfactory to the guests, and Lord Lansdowne will have much pleasure in conveying to the Quartermaster General at headquarters and to the Staff Officers at Aldershot charged with the arrangements referred to the very gratifying remarks contained in the hon. Member's Question. ["Hear, hear!"]

MR. WOOTTON ISAACSON (Tower Hamlets, Stepney)

I beg to ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether any and what, public recognition is to be made of a bony of men who have done valuable services during the Jubilee, namely, the Metropolitan Fire, Brigade?


I am afraid I am unable to answer the Question of my hon. Friend. The control of the Fire Brigade rests with the London County Council, not with me.