HC Deb 09 July 1906 vol 160 cc530-1

I beg to ask Mr. Attorney-General for Ireland whether his attention has been called to a meeting in Ulster Hall, Belfast, on July 1st, and to a sermon delivered by the Reverend R. D. Patterson, who warned His Majesty that by his conduct to the Roman Catholic party since he came to the throne he had excited suspicion, alienated the affections, and strained the loyalty of thousands of his most valuable subjects, and that he must cease at once coquetting with the Church of Rome or else his throne would rock; and whether he proposes to take any action with regard to this sermon.


My attention has been called to a newspaper report of the sermon to which the hon. Member refers. If the reverend gentleman is correctly reported he appears to have made use of language of a most violent and disloyal character. I appreciate the horror and indignation with which my hon. friend naturally regards such language; and I sympathise with his evident desire that criminal proceedings should be taken against the reverend gentleman who uttered it. Having regard, however, to the fact that there is no serious risk, so far as I can judge, of any actual breach of the peace being provoked by the reverend gentleman's language, the Government does not propose to take any action in the matter.

MR. JOHN REDMOND (Waterford)

Was this a meeting of 100 lodges of the Orange Society, and may this be taken as a sample of the loyalty of the so-called loyal minority?

MR. T. L. CORBETT (Down, N.)

Has the Attorney-General any authorised report of this sermon, or is his inference drawn from the Question due to the imagination of the hon. Member for East Clare?


I have seen no authorised report, inasmuch as no police were present at the meeting. I have only seen the newspaper report, and cannot say whether it is accurate or not.

MR. T. W. RUSSELL (Tyrone, S.)

asked was the right hon. Member aware that these blood-curdling proceedings ended with the singing of " God Save the King?

LORD TURNOUR (Sussex, Horsham)

In what paper did the report appear?


Was it not printed in several of the Dublin newspapers? Will the right hon. Gentleman take steps to ascertain whether it was a correct report, and will he bear in mind I was often put in gaol for nothing at all?


I read the report in theBelfast News Letter. I was not aware it had travelled so far as Dublin.

MR. DELANY (Queen's County, Ossory)

Will the right hon. Gentleman take care to send a police note-taker to future meetings of this kind?

[No Answer was returned.]