HC Deb 05 April 1900 vol 81 cc1376-9

, in moving an Address praying Her Majesty to withhold Her Assent to the Draft Order in Council of the 13th March, 1900, for the establishment of the Metropolitan Borough of Hammersmith, stated that the boundaries proposed by the Commissioners were not convenient boundaries. It was true that one of the regulations for the guidance of the Commissioners was that boundaries were to be in the centre of streets, but if that instruction was to be followed they might have selected a better street than the one they had taken. The people of Hammersmith merely wanted a good boundary. It was not a question of rating between Hammersmith and Kensington. Both of these places originally agreed on a boundary, but the Commissioners would not have it.

*SIR ALBERT ROLLIT (Islington, S.)

seconded the motion. The draft Order provided that certified copies of the maps of the district required to be produced in evidence should be obtained from the clerk of the County Council, whose offices were near Charing Cross. It was to be presumed that the persons requiring the maps would find it more convenient to obtain copies of the maps at the Vestry Hall, and that was one reason for the proposal to substitute the words, "Town Clerk of the borough" for "Clerk of the county council," apart from any question as to maintaining the dignity of the new boroughs.

Motion made, and Question proposed, "That an humble Address be presented to Her Majesty, praying Her Majesty to withhold Her Assent to the Draft Order in Council of the 13th day of March, 1900, for the establishment of the Metropolitan Borough of Hammersmith, the incorporation thereof, and for other purposes connected therewith, unless Amendments are made therein (1) to omit so much of sub-paragraphs (a) and (c) of Clause 3 as relates to the Nos. 2, 3, and 5 on the map described in the Draft Order, so as to exclude that portion of the parish of St. Mary Abbotts, Kensington, as is coloured red on the said map, and to retain in the new Borough of Hammersmith all now belonging to the said borough, except the portion to be transferred to carry out the boundary mutually agreed upon by the Vestries of the Parishes of Hammersmith and St. Mary Abbotts, Kensington; and (2) to substitute the words 'Town Clerk of the Borough' for the words 'Clerk of the County Council' throughout Clause 3, Sub-section (4)."—(General Goldsworthy.)

MR. SHARPE (Kensington, N.)

I am sorry, Mr. Speaker, to be obliged to oppose the motion of my honourable and gallant friend the Member for Hammersmith, as regards the boundary between Hammersmith and Kensington. It is true that, under the scheme approved of by the two parishes, Kensington would have surrendered a rateable value of £242, and that the Commissioners have slightly altered the line with an advantage to Kensington of £570 rateable value. The statements of the Hammersmith Vestry that the Commissioners' adjustment is materially different from the old one, and is unjust to Hammersmith as transferring to that borough property of a much inferior class, in an insanitary condition, with a congested low class population, and with roads in a bad state of repair, are, I am instructed to say, either exaggerated or incorrect. It was recognised by the vestries of both parishes that the old boundary between Bramley road and Silchester road could not be perpetuated and no adjustment could be agreed on. But as the conclusions of the Commissioners show that the representations of the two vestries received careful consideration, and were only departed from in order to uphold a general rule laid down for the metropolis as regards boundaries along streets, the parish of Kensington accepted the decision, and I therefore appeal to the House to reject the motion of my hon. and gallant friend.

*EARL PERCY (Kensington, S.)

also opposed the motion. There might be an impression in the House that Kensington was acting a selfish part in the matter. Of course that was not so. At the time of the inquiry the two parishes put forward a joint scheme which, if approved, would have resulted in a pecuniary loss to Kensington.


said the Commissioners in their Report stated that they found the existing boundaries as bad as they could be. The Commissioners substituted for an inconvenient boundary one which was in almost all cases a road or street. He could not pretend to the same local knowledge as his hon. and gallant friend, but the senior Commissioner and his assistant had reported on the matter, and he had looked into it as far as it was possible for him to do so, and he was bound to say that the present boundaries seemed to him to be infinitely better than those that existed before. The Commissioners were absolutely impartial men, with no object whatever except to arrive at the best and most fitting solution of the matter. With regard to the question as to who should certify the maps, there was, he thought, something to be said; but to substitute "town clerk" for "clerk of the county council" would altogether destroy the Order, and it would be necessary to produce another Order to lie on the Table for thirty days. As soon as the present Order was confirmed by Parliament, these schemes would have to be made. Under these schemes the town clerk might be added to the clerk of the county council for the purpose suggested. He would inquire into this subject more fully and ascertain what could be done without injury or prejudice to the purposes of the Order.

Motion, by leave, withdrawn.