§ EARL PERCY (Kensington, S.)
I beg to ask the First Commissioner of Works whether his attention has been drawn to the fact that Kensington Gardens, although opened to the public at 5 a.m. throughout the year, are closed even on the longest day at 9 p.m.; whether he is aware that many of the residents in the district can only use the gardens shortly before the hour at which they are now closed, and that inconvenience is caused to persons on their way between Kensington and Bayswater after dark owing to the necessity of making a wide detour; and whether, in view of the fact that neither the Green Park nor St. James's Park are closed at nightfall, he will consider the expediency of allowing the public to make use of Kensington Gardens, at least during the summer, up to 10 p.m.
§ MR. AKERS DOUGLAS
Yes, Sir; I am aware of the facts stated in the first two paragraphs of my noble friend's question, but I would point out that the enclosure in St. James's Park is now shut at 8.30 p.m., and that in the Green Park which is open till 10 p.m. is lighted to a great extent. If Kensington Gardens 1514 were kept open after dark it would be necessary to make provision for lighting and policing, and I regret I do not see my way to do this, nor do I think it would be desirable to do so. In the absence of police and lighting it would be a great mistake.