HC Deb 22 March 1904 vol 132 cc450-1


Order of the Day for Second Reading read.


said that this Bill was to authorise the transfer of certain powers and duties from the Home Office to the Secretary for Scotland. This transfer had been recommended by two Departmental Committees. The object of the transfer was to endeavour to create greater interest in reformatory and industrial schools, and get the local people to take more interest in their welfare. With regard to the financial part of the question, in 1896 in England the contribution from the rates to reformatories amounted to £21,486, and the Treasury contributed £62,788. In Scotland £2,105 represented the rate contribution, and the Treasury provided £11,936. It was only fair to Scotland to state that the voluntary contribution showed Scotland in a very favourable light. The voluntary contributions in Scotland amounted to £14,000, while in England they were only £16,000, showing that the work of reformatory schools was very much appreciated by those who were familiar with the work. Considering that two Departmental Committees had considered the whole question, and that the Secretary for Scotland would be able to deal with any complicated questions which arose, he trusted that the House would now agree to the Second Reading of the Bill.

Motion made, and Question proposed, That the Bill be now read a second time.

MR. CALDWELL (Lanarkshire, Mid,)

said there was not much objection in principle to the transfer of the schools to the Secretary for Scotland. As had been very rightly pointed out, the voluntary subscriptions in England were comparatively small compared with those of Scotland. When the management was placed under the Secretary for Scotland, he thought the voluntary contributions might be increased in many ways.


said there was no change to be made in the financial arrangements by the Bill. He hoped it would be the means of eliciting more interest in certain of these bodies than they had received in the past. It would make no difference at all in the relations between the Treasury and the local persons concerned in the management of the institutions.

MR. MCCRAE (Edinburgh. E.)

said they ought to congratulate the Secretary for Scotland on this Bill. He understood that it was merely a Bill for unifying control, and giving larger powers to the Secretary for Scotland. In Edinburgh there had been considerable difficulty between the different authorities concerned, and he hoped that what was proposed by the Bill would be a step in the direction of putting matters on a proper footing.