HC Deb 27 July 1897 vol 51 cc1231-2
MR. E. STRACHEY (Somerset, S.)

I beg to ask the Parliamentary Charity Commissioner whether the parish Councils of Misterton and Shepton Beauchamp in the county of Somerset, have called the attention of the Charity Commission to the injury done to the inhabitants of those parishes by their orders of the 26th July 1875, and 30th November 1877, whereby they are deprived of certain educational advantages at the Crewkerne Grammar School; whether the Governors of Crewkerne Grammar School have refused to join the parish councils in making an application to the Charity Commission for such alteration of the present scheme as may seem desirable and fair; whether the Charity Commissioners have any power to take any steps in the matter of their own initiative; and, if they have not, will they undertake, if any application of the Crewkerne Grammar School to alter their present scheme is made at any time, to reconsider the orders affecting the parishes of Misterton and Shepton Beauchamp?

MR. GRANT LAWSON (York N. R., Thirsk)

The Parish Councils of Misterton and Shepton Beauchamp have recently complained of schemes made by the Charity Commissioners in 1876 and 1877, of which public notice in accordance with the Endowed Schools Acts was given in the neighbourhood at the time and against which no complaints were then received. By those Schemes Scholarships of £5 a year, previously tenable only at the University of Oxford, were made tenable at the Grammar School of Crewkerne—the next parish to Misterton. By the original gift the founder's kin had the first preference in the selection of the scholars, and Misterton the second, and Shepton Beauchamp the third. There was no limitation to the poor. If the preferences were to be revived the founder's kin would take the Scholarships. Under these circumstances the Commissioners consider that the inhabitants of Misterton have gained rather than lost educational advantages by the attachment of these Scholarships to the adjacent school of Crewkerne. The Governors of that school have, so far as the Commissioners are aware, neither refused nor agreed to join in the application of the Parish Council of Misterton. The Commissioners have no power to make any scheme for these scholarships under the Charitable Trusts Acts, without an application from the Governors, and they cannot make such a scheme as the Parish Council desire under the Endowed School Acts. if the Governors make an application the Commissioners will reconsider the whole matter, but I cannot give any undertaking as to what the result of that reconsideration would be.


asked whether the draft schemes were sent to the Vestries of the parishes affected before being finally approved?


Not to the Vestries, but two copies were sent to the overseers of each of the parishes. It was advertised in three local newspapers that the scheme was to be seen in Crewkerne Town Hall and to be bought in Crewkerne. Although the matter is 20 years old, there is still at the Chief Commissioners a longlist of bodies and individuals to whom copies of the scheme were sent. It is called the Crewkerne Grammar School Scheme, but upon that list a note appears, that with special reference to the Cawsley Scholarship, copies were sent to the overseers of Misterton, Shepton Beauchamp and Ilminster.