§ MR. BRYCE (Aberdeen, S.)
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether his attention has been called to several recent cases in which faculties have been granted by the Consistory Court of the Diocese of London for the erection of buildings upon disused burial grounds in London; whether it is the fact that the buildings so permitted by these faculties were not enlargements of a church, but other buildings, in respect of which no exception is 961 made to the general prohibition of the erection of buildings on such burial grounds contained in The Disused Burial Grounds Act, 1884; whether any and what steps can be taken to secure the due observance of the provisions of the last-mentioned Act in order that these open spaces may be reserved for the use of the public; or whether, if the law is defective, he will take any steps to have it amended.
(Answered by Mr. Secretary Ritchie.) I have referred to the Chancellor of the Diocese, and am informed by him that in all cases in which he has granted faculties for the erection of buildings upon disused burial grounds he was satisfied that the buildings were enlargements of a place of worship within the meaning of The Disused Burial Grounds Act, 1884. It does not appear, on the facts before me, that an Amendment of the law is required. There is a right of appeal from the Consistory Court to the Court of Arches, and thence to the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council, besides the procedure by writ of prohibition if the Ecclesiastical Court exceeds its jurisdiction. I may add that I understand that the Chancellor of the Diocese will make it a rule of court that due notice of applications for faculties of this kind shall be given to the London Count Council, who have powers under The Disused Burial Grounds Acts.