HC Deb 27 July 1906 vol 162 cc120-204

Considered in Committee.

(In the Committee.)

[Mr. EMMOTT (Oldham) in the Chair.]

Clause 1.


in moving to omit the words "contemplation or," said the purport of the Amendment was sufficiently clear in itself; its object was to narrow the scope of the clause. It would hardly be possible to consider the effect of this Amendment unless one considered the whole of the clause itself. The clause removed every remedy for certain classes of damage committed during trade disputes if they were done "In contemplation or furtherance" of a trade dispute. That being so, hon. Members would see that it was necessary to consider with some care the exact nature of the damage which was proposed to be left without remedy. This question involved directly the whole question of the law of conspiracy as applied to trade disputes, and that was a question which could only be properly dealt with by lawyers. Although at one time he committed the youthful indiscretion of being called to the Bar, he was not, and he hoped he never would be, in any real sense a lawyer. He believed he was right in saying that the law upon this matter at the present time was that for ordinary persons and in ordinary circumstances the law recognised that an act which was perfectly harmless if done by one person, became altogether altered in its character and might be extremely formidable, in fact so formidable as to inflict provable legal damage if committed by many persons. The law provided for that kind of damage two remedies, the criminal action for conspiracy and the civil action. Until the year 1871 no difference was made by the legislature between a trade dispute and any other dispute. A man who suffered damage as the result of a conspiracy during a trade dispute had his remedy just the same as a man who suffered similar damage in any other kind of dispute. In the year 1871 an Act was passed which was amplified in 1875, the result of which was to take away criminal remedies for acts committed during trade disputes, so long as they would not have been indictable if committed by one person. Ever since the year 1875, trade disputes had been differentiated by the law from all other disputes, inasmuch as criminal action for conspiracy was then taken away. But the civil remedy remained, and it was that civil remedy and that right of civil action which it was now proposed by the clause before them to take away. The clause took away that right from any person who suffered damage done by an act in pursuance of an agreement or combination during or in contemplation of a trade dispute. It also took away from that person all remedy whatever in respect of the agreement or conspiracy. That was the proposal of this clause. What he desired to do was to narrow the scope of the clause to what seemed to him to be its proper function. He asked the Committee to consider the nature of the acts for which no remedy at all under any circumstances was to be allowed under this astonishing new arrangement. They were acts which by hypothesis were harmless if committed by one person, but nobody would deny that, although harmless when committed by one person, they might be harmful in the highest degree and produce intolerable wrong and injustice, if committed by many persons. And yet it was the essence of this clause that the act to be covered by the clause did produce legal and provable damage. It was the essence therefore of this pro- posal that a man who had suffered legal undeniable damage which he could prove in a Court of Justice was to be left entirely without remedy. That was a very large demand, which, in view of all the traditions of the country, the House ought to view with considerable care, and he did think that it was important that they should consider whether the words which he moved to leave out did not extend the operation of the clause to an extent to which the House might not altogether be prepared to go. Now what was the kind of act for which this clause left no remedy? One might draw upon one's imagination, but there was no need to do so, because many cases existed similar to those which were contemplated by this clause. He would cite a fairly recent case decided in 1901, with which hon. Gentlemen were no doubt perfectly familiar. The case he alluded to was that of "Quinn v. Leathern."there lived just outside Belfast in the year 1895 a certain grazing butcher, named Leathern. [An HON MEMBER: That is ancient history.] He employed a foreman and a certain number of assistants, who were nonunion men. His business was to raise stock and sell it to his customers in Bel fast and the most important of his customers was a butcher named Munce, who employed union men in the town of Belfast. There was no dispute between Mr. Leathern and his men, or between Leathern and Munce. Everything was being carried on to the complete satisfaction of everybody concerned, and one would have thought that those two businesses might have been left to rest in peace. But it was quite obvious that if businesses were allowed to be conducted quietly, the more militant form of trade unionism came to an end. These two butchers, Mr. Leathern and Mr. Munce, conducted their business to the satisfaction of everybody concerned. Their workmen were satisfied and the general public were satisfied. But the representatives of the local trade union were not satisfied, and they put their heads together to see what could be done to put an end to this state of things. They made an agreement as contemplated by this clause, and as a result they committed an act contemplated by this clause. They wrote a letter to Mr. Leathern, and without preamble or excuse or explanation, demanded in a most categorical way the instant dismissal by Mr. Leathern of his foreman and all his men.

R. CLEMENT EDWARDS (Denbigh District)

The hon. Member has not stated the facts correctly.


said he had given these facts the best attention of which he was capable, and the hon. Member would find that he had not misstated them. The union demanded the instant dismissal of these men, and Mr. Leathern naturally asked upon what grounds. He said if the grounds were that they did not belong to the local trade union he was quite ready to pay their entrance fees into the union, and he was perfectly willing that they should enter the union. That proposal however, was rejected by the officials of the union, who said in the plainest possible terms that their object was to drive these men out of employment to walk the streets of Belfast for twelve months without any employment. That was intended as a punishment to them for not having joined the union. In other words, the object of the union was not to get these men to join the union but to see that they should be hounded about the streets without any work and reduce them to something which hon. Members below the gangway knew perfectly well amounted to starvation. Having made that intimation, the officials of the union repeated their demand for the instant dismissal of these men. That was a demand which certain employers might at once have acceded to. But Mr. Leatham was a man of a totally different character. He said he did not like the notion of men who had served him faithfully for many years being sent to starve in the streets, and for his part, he refused to dismiss them. Whereupon the union committed another act; for they induced Mr. Munce, by a threat to call out his men, to refuse to take Mr. Leathem's meat, which he was purchasing to the extent of £30 a week, and all this simply because Mr. Leathern had the courage to stand between his men, who were free labourers, and starvation and the union. Consequently, Mr. Leathern suffered a palpable and undeniable damage of a very serious character. Those acts committed under those circumstances were acts which were precisely covered by the clause now before the Committee, because they were done in contemplation of a trade dispute. This was a trade dispute, not indeed between an employer and his workmen, such as was contemplated in the Act of 1875, but they were acts done in contemplation of a trade dispute between the union men and the non-union men of the district. And it was an act which, had it been done without any agreement or combination by one man acting singly, would not have been actionable for a moment. Therefore he thought it was a question worthy of grave consideration whether the Committee was prepared in cold blood and upon serious reflection to place a form of words upon the Statute book which would directly and expressly legalise acts of that description. He asked the Committee to adopt his suggestion with all the more confidence because he understood that the acts of which he had complained were repudiated by every trade union leader worthy of the name. He understood that hon. Gentlemen below the gangway shared the disgust which was felt at such acts, and repudiated them. But in spite of their repudiation and dislike of those acts, the fact remained that such acts were committed, and he could not for the life of him understand how hon. Gentlemen came down to this House and supported the Government in asking for a clause which would expressly legalise acts which everyone who followed him in this debate would repudiate and disavow. For his part, he agreed with a learned Judge who tried this case—he alluded to Lord Lindley—who said that a man might resist without difficulty the wrongful act of an individual but it was a very different thing when one man had to defend himself against a combination of men. An Act committed as the result of such a combination might be good or bad. But it was inevitably different in quality from the same act committed without such combination. And to enact, as this clause proposed to do, that such acts were the same if committed in contemplation of a trade dispute was to enact a plain absurdity. His object was to prevent that kind of thing, or at least, his point was that it should be rigidly confined to times of industrial war, and not to times of peace. That was the object of this Amendment. In the course of a former debate upon this Bill, the hon. Member for South Glamorganshire referred to a system under which employers conspired together to prevent men whom they disliked from obtaining employment, and they kept a black list—a list of men whom the employers agreed together to refuse to employ. If that was true, he thought it was very bad, and he should be very glad, so far as he was able to co-operate with hon. Members below the gangway, to see what could be done to bring such a system to an end. But this clause made that state of things expressly legal, and he hoped working men generally would realise that the efforts of Labour Members in this House would, if successful, result in making such action by the employers definitely legal.

*SIR CHARLES DILKE (Gloucestershire, Forest of Dean)

I submit, Mr. Chairman, on a point of order, that that argument has nothing whatever to do with this particular Amendment.


My object is to show what would be the effect when the Bill becomes law, of leaving out the words which I have moved to omit from the clause.


The hon. Member does seem to have argued very widely upon this Amendment. Of course, he is quite entitled to argue as to the effect of striking out the words in the Amendment, but the hon. Member appears to me to have gone far beyond that, and he has argued a good deal upon the question of combination. He must confine himself to the Ammendment.


said his object was to enable the Committee to consider whether the kind of acts contemplated by this clause were acts which ought to be possible, not only during, and in furtherance of a trade dispute, but also in contemplation of a trade dispute, because the term "contemplation" was exceedingly wide, and it might he very difficult for a pourt to come to a conclusion upon the Coint. The question was whether those acts should be allowed in contemplation, as well as in furtherance of a trade dispute. They were told that this made no real change, and that it only settled in law what had been supposed to be the law for thirty years or more. They were also told that they ought to trust the trade union leaders in this matter. He was not going to say a word against those representatives of trade unionism who had the advantage of sitting in this House, nor against responsible trade union leaders generally, but he thought they ought to remember that trade union leaders after all, were like Cabinet Ministers, for they only led on terms. They only led so long as they could obtain a following, and in order to obtain a following, what might they not be forced to do? [Cries of "Oh" from the LABOUR Members.] Hon. Gentlemen below the gangway were always contemplating some trade dispute. [Cries of "No, no."] Well, he would come to that point in a moment. They might be, as Cabinet Ministers sometimes were, driven to a course of action against their own better judgment, into taking extreme courses, by wild followers behind them, and be forced in a few weeks' time to eat their own words.


Order, order. That question does not arise on the Amendment.


said he was endeavouring to show that the argument that they ought to trust trade union leaders to act reasonably in contemplation of trade disputes was a very difficult one to admit. What was the object of the words which he proposed to omit? They were directed, it seemed to him, not against the employers, nor were they designed to strengthen the hands of trade union leaders in respect of existing trade disputes, but they were plainly directed, and this was his objection to the words, against the independence of non-union labour. It was the non-union man who was the real enemy of hon. Gentlemen below the gangway. It should not be overlooked that the vast majority of the working people did not belong to trade unions, and did not believe in them, and, in fact, did not want to belong to them. They were the people who were aimed at by the words of this clause, which he proposed to omit, and they would put it into the power of hon. Members below the gangway if they desired to do so, as long as they were contemplating a trade dispute, to make it impossible for any man to retain his independence in the matter of his own labour. Hon. Gentlemen below the gangway were always more or less contemplating a trade dispute. [Cries of "No."] He could prove the truth of his contention, because there were a number of quotations which he could make from hon. Members' speeches and writings which would bear out what he had said. The membership of trade unions in this country was diminishing. He believed the power of trade union leaders in this country was diminishing. They only depended upon their following, and liberty having failed, tyranny was now to be called in. In the phrase, "In contemplation of a trade dispute "hon. Members below the gangway were to be given power to divide the industries of this country into two great armed camps, armed to the teeth, and taught to believe that their interests were not identical, but opposite. Power was to be given under these words, because they contemplated a trade dispute, to ruin, if they desired to do so, any man who refused to be recruited into their ragged army. That was a power which he would not trust to any set of Ministers sitting on the Treasury Bench, still less would he trust it to hon. Members below the gangway. These words gave absolutely unlimited power to trade unions, to coerce free labourers into their ranks at any time and that was why he moved that they should be omitted. He would not like the clause even when the omission was made. But he thought that they ought at least to take care that no man was forced into the struggle between capital and labour against his will, and that those who wished to keep clear of that kind of pressure during times of industrial peace might be permitted to do so. He begged to move.

Amendment proposed— In page 1, line 9, to leave out the words ' contemplation or.'"—( Mr. Bowles.)

Question proposed, "That the words proposed to be left out stand part of the clause."


said that the practical answer to the hon. Member's arguments was that it would be most difficult, even if it were possible, to draw a distinction between acts done in contemplation of, and acts done in furtherance of, a trade dispute. The hon. Member's arguments against what he had described as acts done in contemplation of trade disputes would almost be equally applicable to acts done after the dispute had begun. The desirability of inserting words of this kind was evidently considered by the late Government, with the result that these very words were inserted in the Bill which passed through this House. He hoped, therefore, that the hon. Member would not press his Amendment to a division.

SIR E. CARSON (Dublin University)

thought he ought to state to the Committee his view as a lawyer in reference to these words. It was quite true that the House, by a previous Act, had prohibited an indictment against a workman for conspiracy to do an act which would not be indictable if it were done by a single individual. That was the state of the criminal law. It was quite true, as the Attorney-General had said, that within the section of the Act of 1875 these words "In contemplation of" were present. What he should like to point out, however, was that there was a very great distinction, and he thought the Attorney-General would see it at once, between a criminal act and a civil remedy. In the case of the criminal act they could not carry on a trade dispute without entering into some sort of an agreement in contemplation of or before the dispute came on. He thought they ought to do this just as well when the dispute was in contemplation as while it was in progress. The conspiracy, such as it was, would take place before the trade dispute was actually entered into. What a man was indicted for, and what they used to indict him for, was conspiracy. He need not have done any act under it, and nothing need have taken place at all in the way of a trade dispute, prior to the Act of 1875. But, when they came to the civil action it was entirely different. They could not bring a civil action against any person for entering into a dispute, and people might conspire as much as they liked so long as they did nothing in pursuance of it. They had to prove in a civil action not merely conspiracy, but legal damage as a consequence of it. The reason why he objected to these words remaining in the section was that the House would then be laying down that persons might inflict legal damage before a trade dispute had arisen at all. He thought that was a fatal policy. He quite agreed that once a trade dispute came on, there might be reasons of policy, on either one side or the other, why they should limit liability, but how far it should be limited was a question for the Committee. He thought, however, that to lay down that damage might be committed in pursuance of a conspiracy, and before the dispute actually came on, was going a long way to prevent a settlement of that dispute before it reached an acute form. He submitted to the Committee that having regard to this distinction, they ought not slavishly to follow the wording of the Act of 1875, unless in relation to criminal matters, because the gist of the offence in the two cases was absolutely different. In the case of most criminal matters, it was a conspiracy, but in the case of the civil remedy, it was the damage done, and he suggested to the Commitee that they ought not to lay down that legal damage should be without a remedy where it was done before a trade dispute came on, and merely in contemplation of it.


said that the 'Commission appointed by the late Government to deal with this question of trade disputes distinctly recommended the words contained in this clause. They would be found on page 17 of the Report which was signed by three of the Commissioners, and on page 24 in the Memorandum made by four of the Commissioners. He also wished to point out that these very words passed the Standing Committee last year, and they were inserted upon a division in another clause dealing with peaceful picketing. Upon that occasion eleven members of the Unionist Party voted in favour of these words, and eleven against.


But that clause was entirely different from this one. This was a recommendation to enact that an agreement or Combination should not be the ground of a civil action in contemplation of a trade dispute, unless it was indictable as a conspiracy. His point was in reference to the agreement and conspiracy and the malicious damage done, which was entirely different and ought not to be allowed in contemplation of a trade dispute. As regarded the Report of this Committee, the right hon. Gentleman must be perfectly well aware that the one matter which the Committee reported most strongly against was the Government proposal in regard to Clause 4. It was all very well to pick out parts in the Report of the Commission, and say that they were in favour of so and so, but they must take the Report as a whole; and they could not whittle away one right and then sweep away other rights, and in that way say that they were carrying out the Report of the Commission. T-hey must take the Report of the Commission as a whole, or else their recommendations were of no value whatever.

*MR. HAVELOCK WILSON (Middlesbrough)

said he could not very well allow the remarks of the hon. Member for Norwood to pass without challenge from that side of the House. [An HON. MEMBER: He is not worth it.] Then he was a very poor Member of this House if his remarks were not worth some consideration from the Labour Members. He had described trade unionists as a ragged army. He ventured to say, with all due respect to the hon. Member for Norwood, that when he had gained a little more experience of trade unionism he would probably be like a good many other employers of labour in this House. he would begin to recognise that trade unions were valuable institutions, and that it was a good thing for the workmen to be combined together in order that to settle their differences in a reasonable and intelligent manner. The hon. Member for Norwood had complained of union men compelling non-unionists to join a trade union. If he was correctly informed, the hon. Member himself had recently become an employer of labour by owning ships. Only a short time ago a vessel in which the hon. Member was interested engaged a crew, and one of the conditions attached to the employment of those men was that they were to join a combination. It was not, however, a workmen's organisation which they were called upon to join, but it was an organisation known as the "Shipping Federation, Ltd." If those men had not become members of that organisation, then they could not have been employed upon the hon. Member's vessel.


Order, order. Unless the hon. Member can show that this particular federation was formed in contemplation of a trade dispute, he is not in order in discussing that point.


Certainly it is in contemplation of a trade dispute, because it is well known that this particular organisation exists for the purpose of destroying trade unions.


But that is not the question. An organisation to destroy trade unions is not in contemplation of a trade dispute as suggested in this clause.


thought it was, and as the hon. Member for Norwood had made so much out of the tyrannical conduct of trade unions in compelling men against their will to join something that they did not believe in, it was only right that he should be allowed to call attention to the fact that the hon. Member for Norwood himself was not altogether innocent in these matters; therefore he ought to be the last man to cast stones at trade unionists when he himself had been doing a little in that direction.


hoped his hon. friend would press his Amendment. Although not a lawyer, he thought the words "In contemplation "seemed liable to cause very serious injury not only to employers but also to trade unionists. He regretted the introduction of questions as to whether trade unions were good or bad things, or whether federations of employers were good or bad, and he intended to limit his remarks to what seemed to him as a layman as likely to take place under the provisions of this clause. The hon. and learned Attorney-General said, and this was the only argument he advanced against the omission of these words, that it would be difficult to decide when a trade dispute commenced. That might or might not be so, but still as a layman he should have thought that a trade dispute commenced when the men were called out by the union or when the masters locked' the men out. [LABOUR Cries of "No, No."] Hon. Members below the Gangway differed from him, but at any rate that was his opinion, and if hon. Members could' show him that he was wrong he would be happy to listen to them, and if they convinced him on that point he would not vote for the Amendment which had been. I moved by his hon. friend. If he was right upon this point he thought the Attorney-General would admit that it would be very simple to find out when a trade dispute commenced. In that case, those words covered such an enormous ground that it would be worth while to leave them out in order to safeguard the interests of all parties. But supposing an act which up to the present time had been illegal was done, if this clause was in force it would be possible for the persons doing that illegal act, whether masters or men, to declare that it was done in contemplation of a trade dispute. What had the Attorney-General adduced to prove that it was not done in contemplation of a trade dispute? The mere word of the master or of the members of the trade union or their officials, that the act was done in contemplation of a trade dispute would, under this clause, take away the effect of their wrongdoing. He would not go into the arguments which his hon. friends had adduced, because he thought that a good many of them were applicable more to the clause as a whole than to this Amendment, and as he had a Motion down on the Paper to omit the clause he would reserve any further remarks for that occasion. He thought, however, that when the right hon. Baronet the Member for the Forest of Dean, said that the Royal Commission recommended this and that it ought to be remembered that this was the House of Commons and not the Royal Commission; and although he looked with great respect upon the findings of Royal Commissions, he agreed with the right hon. Gentleman the Member for the University of Dublin that if the verdict of the Royal Commission was to be taken as something which was unanswerable then they must take it as a whole. If the Government would accept the findings of the Royal Commission as a whole he did not suppose there would be much objection. With regard to the statement of the Labour Members in regard to the late Government's action upon this question, he would like to say that many Members of the Opposition voted against this clause, and with regard to those who voted for it he did not know whether they did so in contemplation of an approaching election or whether that had anything to do with the matter.

MR. PAUL (Northampton)

pointed out that an act done in contemplation of a trade dispute must be done either in futherance or hindrance of it or without any reference to it. If the act was done in hindrance or without reference to it it was clear that it did not come within the scope of the Bill.

MR. HILLS (Durham)

considered that this Amendment was entirely unnecessary. At any rate it was incumbent upon those who desired to cut down the clause in this way, to show that the clause as a whole was wrong. He reminded the Committee that other opportunities would arise for discussing the clause as a whole, but as it did not change but tended to clarify the law upon this point he intended to vote against the Amendment.

*MR. PARKES (Birmingham, Central)

said that in his opinion the words "In contemplation or" had not the same meaning in the present Bill as in the Bill which had gone before it. He should like at once to dissociate himself from any remark made by the Member for Norwood with regard to trade unionists, and he hoped that the debate would be conducted without acrimony. The Attorney-General

had said something with regard to the words "furtherance" and "contemplation."the word "furtherance" would in his opinion include '' contemplation." and the Attorney-General himself seemed-to indicate that in his remarks. He felt sure that all working men would desire that the area of dispute should be kept as small as possible. They wanted to limit trade disputes as far as possible, and if the words "in contemplation or" could be left out without injuring the Bill or making it invalid, and without injuring the main object of the Bill, he thought it would be a very good thing. There was no doubt that to the ordinary mind the words "In contemplation or" were not of a. character which was well understood. He therefore appealed to the Attorney-General to agree to the omission of the words "In contemplation or" if he could do so consistently with the object of the Bill.

MR. PIKE PEASE (Darlington)

desired to ask if "In contemplation or" might be taken to be included in the word "furtherance."


said his opinion was that both words were required, for this reason, that they might have a trade dispute which either had arisen or was on the point of arising. Therefore he thought it was necessary to include words which would cover that which was done "In contemplation" or arranging of a trade dispute and that which was done after the dispute had arisen.


said he did not desire under the circumstances to force this Amendment to a division. In order to save the time of the Committee he asked, leave to withdraw his Amendment.

Leave to withdraw refused.

Question put.

The Committee divided:—Ayes, 319; Noes, 48. (Division List No. 279.)

Abraham, William(Cork,N.E.) Adkins, W. Ryland D. Alden, Percy
Abraham, William (Rhondda) Agnew, George William Allen, A. Acland(Christchurch)
Acland, Francis Dyke Ainsworth, John Stirling Allen, Charles P (Stroud)
Ambrose, Robert Dolan, Charles Joseph Joyce, Michael
Asquith,Rt.Hn.HerbertHenry Duckworth, James Kearley, Hudson E.
Astbury, John Meir Duffy, William J. Kelley, George D.
Atherley-Jones, L. Duncan, C. (Barrow-in-Furness Kennedy, Vincent Paul
Baker, Sir John (Portsmouth) Duncan, J. H. (York, Otley) King, Alfred John (Knutsford)
Baker, JosephA.(Finsbury, E.) Duncan, Robert(Lanark,Govan Laidlaw, Robert
Balfour, Robert (Lanark) Dunn, A. Edward (Camborne) Lamb, Ernest H. (Rochester)
Baring, Godfrey (Isle of Wight) Dunne, MajorE.Martin(Walsall Lambert, George
Barlow, JohnEmmott(Somerset Edwards, Clement (Denbigh) Lambton, Hon.FrederickWm.
Barlow, Percy (Bedford) Edwards, Enoch (Hanley) Lamont, Norman
Barnard, E. B. Edwards, Frank (Radnor) Law, Hugh A.(Donegal, W.)
Barnes, G. N. Elibank, Master of Layland-Barratt, Francis
Barry, E. (Cork, S.) Esmonde, Sir Thomas Lever, A. Levy(Essex,Harwich
Beale, W. P. Essex, R. W. Levy, Maurice
Beauchamp, E. Farrell, James Patrick Lewis, John Herbert
Beaumont,Hubert(Eastbourne Fenwick, Charles Lloyd-George, Rt. Hon. David
Beaumont, W. C. B. (Hexham) Ferens, T. R. Lough, Thomas
Bell, Richard Ffrench, Peter Lundon, W.
Bellairs, Carlyon Fiennes, Hon. Eustace Lupton, Arnold
Benn, Sir J. Williams(Devonp'rt Findlay, Alexander Macdonald, J. R. (Leicester)
Bethell, J. H. (Essex, Romford) Flynn, James Christopher Macdonald, J.M.(Falkirk B'ghs
Bethell, T. R. (Essex, Maldon) Fowler, Rt. Hon. Sir Henry Maclean, Donald
Birrell, Rt. Hon. Augustine Freeman-Thomas, Freeman MacVeagh, Jeremiah (Down, S)
Black, Arthur W. (Bedfordshire Fuller, John Michael F. MacVeigh,Charles(Donegal,E.
Boland, John Fullerton, Hugh M'Callum, John M.
Bolton, T. D. (Derbyshire,N.E. Gardner, Col. Alan(Hereford,S. M'Hugh, Patrick A.
Boulton, A. C. F. (Ramsey) Gibb, James (Harrow) M'Kean, John
Brace, William Gill, A. H. M'Killop, W.
Bramsdon, T. A. Ginnell, L. M'Laren, Sir C. B. (Leicester)
Brigg, John Gladstone, RtHn. HerbertJohn M'Laren, H. D. (Stafford, W.)
Brocklehurst, W. B. Glover, Thomas M'Micking, Major G.
Brodie, H. C. Goddard, Daniel Ford Maddison, Frederick
Brooke, Stopford Gooch, George Peabody Mallet, Charles E.
Brunner, J.F.L. (Lancs.,Leigh) Greenwood, G. (Peterborough) Manfield, Harry (Northants)
Bryce, J. A. (Inverness Burghs) Grey, Rt. Hon. Sir Edward Marks, G. Croydon(Launceston
Buchanan, Thomas Ryburn) Gulland, John W Marnham, F. J.
Buckmaster, Stanley O. Gurdon, Sir W. Brampton Mason, A. E. W. (Coventry)
Burns, Rt. Hon. John Haldane, Rt. Hon. Richard B. Massie, J.
Burt, Rt. Hon. Thomas Hall, Frederick Masterman, C. F. G.
Buxton, Rt. Hn. Sydney Chas. Halpin, J. Micklem, Nathaniel
Cairns, Thomas Hammond, John Mond, A.
Campbell-Bannerman, Sir H. Harcourt, Rt. Hon. Lewis Montagu, E. S.
Carr-Gomm, H. W. Hardie, J.Keir(MerthyrTydvil) Mooney, J. J.
Causton,Rt. Hn. RichardKnight Harrington, Timothy Morgan, G. Hay (Cornwall)
Chance, Frederick William Hart-Davies, T. Morgan, J. Lloyd (Carmarthen)
Cheetham, John Frederick Harvey, A. G. C. (Rochdale) Morley, Rt. Hon. John
Cherry, Rt. Hon. R. R. Haslam, James (Derbyshire) Morse, L. L.
Churchill, Winston Spencer Haworth, Arthur A. Morton, Alpheus Cleophas
Cleland, J. W. Hazel, Dr. A. E. Murnaghan, George
Clough, W. Hazleton, Richard Murhpy, John
Clynes, J. R. Hedges, A. Paget Murray, James
Coats, Sir T. Glen(Renfrew,W.) Henderson, Arthur (Durham) Myer, Horatio
Cobbold, Felix Thornley Higham, John Sharp Nicholson, Chas. N. (Doncast'r
Cogan, Denis J. Hills, J. W. Nolan, Joseph
Collins, Stephen (Lambeth) Hobart, Sir Robert Norman, Henry
Cooper, G. J. Hobhouse, Charles E. H. Norton, Capt. Cecil William
Corbett, A. Cameron (Glasgow) Hodge, John Nussey, Thomas Willans
Corbett,C.H.(Sussex,E.Grinst'd Hogan, Michael Nuttall, Harry
Cornwall, Sir Edwin A. Horniman, Emslie John O'Brien, Kendal(TipperaryMid)
Cotton, Sir H. J. S. Hudson, Walter O'Connor, John (Kildare, N.
Cowan, W. H. Hutton, Alfred Eddison O'Connor, T. P. (Liverpool)
Cox, Harold Hyde, Clarendon O'Doherty, Philip
Craig, Herbert J. (Tynemouth) Illingworth, Percy H. O'Donnell, C. J. (Walworth)
Crean, Eugene Isaacs, Rufus Daniel O'Donnell, T. (Kerry, W.)
Crooks, William Jackson, R. S. O'Dowd, John
Crosfield, A. H. Jacoby, James Alfred O'Grad, J.
Cullinan, J. Jenkins, J. O'Hare, Patrick
Davies, Timothy (Fulham) Johnson, John (Gateshead) O'Kelly, James(Roscommon,N
Delany, William Johnson, W. (Nuneaton) O'Malley, William
Dewar, Arthur (Edinburgh,S.) Jones,SirD.Brynmor(Swansea) O'Shaughnessy, P. J.
Dickinson, W.H.(St.Pancras,N. Jones, Leif (Appleby) Parker, James (Halifax)
Dilke, Rt. Hon. Sir Charles Jones, William (Carnarvonshire Partington, Oswald
Dobson, Thomas W. Jowett, F. W. Paul, Herbert
Paulton, James Mellor Seddon, J. Walker, H. De R. (Leicester)
Pearce, Robert (Staffs, Leek) Shackleton, David James Wallace, Robert
Philipps, Col. Iver (S'thampton Shaw, Charles Edw. (Stafford) Walsh, Stephen
Philipps, Owen C. (Pembroke) Shaw, Rt. Hon. T. (Hawick B. Walters, John Tudor
Pickersgill, Edward Hare Shipman, Dr. John G. Walton, Sir John L. (Leeds, S.)
Pirie, Duncan V. Simon, John Allsebrook Walton, Joseph (Barnsley)
Powell, Sir Francis Sharp Sinclair, Rt. Hon. John Ward, John (Stoke upon Trent)
Power, Patrick Joseph Smeaton, Donald Mackenzie Ward, W. Dudley(Southamptn
Price, C. E. (Edinb'gh, Central) Smyth, Thomas F.(Leitrim,S.) Wardle, George J.
Radford, G. H. Snowden, P. Warner, Thomas Courtenay T.
Rainy, A. Rolland Soares, Ernest J. Wason, John Cathcart(Orkney)
Raphael, Herbert H. Spicer, Sir Albert Watt, H. Anderson
Redmond, John E. (Waterford) Stanger, H. Y. Weir, James Galloway
Richards, T.F. (Wolverh'mpt'n Stanley, Hn. A. Lyulph (Chesh.) Whitbread, Howard
Richardson, A. Steadman, W. C. White, J. D. (Dumbartonshire)
Rickett, J. Compton Stewart, Halley (Greenock) White, Luke (York, E. R.
Ridsdale, E. A. Stewart-Smith, D. (Kendal) White, Patrick (Meath, North
Roberts, Charles H. (Lincoln) Strachey, Sir Edward Whitehead, Rowland
Roberts, G. H. (Norwich) Strauss, E. A. (Abingdon) Whitley, J. H. (Halifax)
Robertson, Sir G. Scott(Bradf'd Stuart, James (Sunderland) Wiles, Thomas
Robertson, J. M. (Tyneside) Sullivan, Donal Wilkie, Alexander
Robson, Sir William Snowdon Summerbell, T. Wilson, Henry J.(York,W.R.
Rogers, F. E. Newman Sutherland, J. E. Wilson, J.H. (Middlesbrough)
Rose, Charles Day Taylor, John W. (Durham) Wilson, P.W. (St. Pancras, S.)
Rowlands, J. Thomas, Sir A. (Glamorgan, E. Wilson, W. T. (Westhoughton,
Runciman, Walter Thompson, J.W.H.(Somerset E. Woodhouse, Sir J.T.(Huddersf'd
Russell, T. W. Thorne, William Yoxall, James Henry
Samuel, Herbert L. (Cleveland) Torrance, Sir A. M.
Schwann, C. Duncan (Hyde) Toulmin, George TELLERS FOE THE AYES—Mr.
Schwann, Sir C.E.(Manchester) Ure, Alexander Whiteley and Mr. J. A.
Sears, J. E. Verney, F. W. Pease.
Seaverns, J. H. Vivian, Henry
Ashley, W. W. Fell, Arthur Morpeth, Viscount
Aubrey-Fletcher, Rt. Hn. Sir H. Fetherstonhaugh, Godfrey Muntz, Sir Philip A.
Balcarres, Lord Finch, Rt. Hon. George H. Nicholson, Wm. G.(Petersfield
Banbury, Sir Frederick George Fletcher, J. S: Parkes, Ebenezer
Barrie, H. T. (Londonderry, N.) Forster, Henry William Roberts, S. (Sheffield, Ecclesall)
Beach, Hn. Michael HughHicks Haddock, George R. Salter, Arthur Clavell
Beckett, Hon. Gervase Hamilton, Marquess of Smith, F.E. (Liverpool, Walton)
Bridgeman, V. Clive Hervey, F.W.F.(BuryS.Edm'ds Starkey, John R.
Campbell, Rt. Hn. J. H. M. Hill, Sir Clement (Shrewsbury) Talbot, Rt. Hn. J.G.(Oxf'd Univ.
Carson, Rt. Hon. Sir Edw. H. Hill, Henry Staveley (Staff'sh. Thornton, Percy M.
Cave, George Hunt, Rowland Wilson, A. Stanley(York, E.R.)
Cavendish, Rt. Hn. Victor C. W. Law, Andrew Bonar (Dulwich) Wortley, Rt. Hon. C. B. Stuart.
Cecil, Evelyn (Aston Manor) Lockwood, Rt.Hn.Lt.-Col.A.R.
Cecil, Lord John P. Joicey- Long, Rt.Hn.Walter (Dublin,S. TELLERS FOR THE NOES
Cochrane, Hon. Thos. H. A. E. Lowe, Sir Francis William Lord Robert Cecil and Mr.
Craig, Chas. Curtis (Antrim, S.) Lyttelton, Rt. Hon. Alfred Bowles.
Douglas, Rt. Hon. A. Akers- Mason, James F. (Windsor)
Faber, George Denison (York) Meysey-Thompson, E. C.
*MR. CLAVELL SALTER (Hants, Basingstoke)

said he wished to insert after the word "dispute"the words "between employers and workmen." He thought it possible that on consideration all parts of the Committee, including the leaders of the Independent Labour Party, would be disposed to think the words he proposed to insert were necessary. If this Bill was ever to become part of the law and to be operative there would have to be some thing to define what a trade dispute was. It contained no definition clause in regard to trade disputes, and in the absence of a definition clause he asked the Committee to say that it was necessary to define what a trade dispute really was. This was a Bill that would, rightly or wrongly, license conspiracy; it would license interference with businesses and with a man's right to work when and where he pleased. Having regard to the great importance of the change which this Bill would make in the law and the great number of people who would be affected by it, he considered that it was desirable to define the position if it could be done. Wherever this Bill applied it would deprive those who came under its operation of many of their rights and that personal freedom and immunity from interference which had hitherto been considered to be of great importance. That would be generally agreed. Everybody had assumed that "trade disputes "In this Bill would be limited as he proposed to limit it by this Amendment, but these changes in the law had nothing to do with trade unions. Trade unions were not mentioned in the first part, which had nothing to do with employers or with the relations between employers and their workmen. The proposed changes were not restricted to those who would be parties to the dispute. They were not so restricted as regards the attackers or the attacked. As soon as they brought themselves within the operation of this Bill by saying they were furthering or contemplating a trade dispute they would stand in a different position from the rest of their fellow subjects as to what they might or might not do.


said the hon. Member appeared to be discussing the clause. He must confine his observations to the Amendment.


said he had said all he intended to say on that point. What was a trade dispute? If he had a difference with his butcher because he said that his bill was not paid and threatened to take proceedings, that was a trade dispute. [" Oh, oh."] Yes, that was a matter which had to be faced. These questions would soon come up if the Bill passed into law. Suppose a dispute arose between members of a trade who formed rings to exclude a member or to cause injury to another branch of trade. Nobody could deny that that would be a trade dispute. It did not affect trade unions and workpeople in any sort of way, but nobody would deny that it was a trade dispute. A dispute between two railway companies was a trade dispute, and under this Bill they would be able to picket each other's stations to any extent and would be allowed to do anything they liked to impair the trade of each other and injure other people. A trade dispute was an evil which in itself might injure and cause suffering to persons who were not parties to the dispute. His object in moving this Amendment was to define what a trade dispute was in the contemplation of this Bill. It must be defined. As the Committee knew, if this clause passed it would find a place in the Conspiracy and Property Protection Act of 1875 and he was appealing to the Committee to make a workmanlike job of it. If it was passed into law as it stood without the change he desired to make, the judge who had to construe this section would be bound to construe it in a wider sense than as a dispute between employers and workmen. It would be impossible for this clause to be so limited if the words proposed were not inserted. He claimed the support of the hon. and learned Attorney-General when he said that in making any addition to an Act of Parliament they must follow the words of the Act. He did not think any Member of the Committee could allege any particular reason for not making the limitation he suggested, and he asserted that if they did not make this limitation they would do enormous harm to great masses of people in the country who had no interest in these disputes. All he asked was that they should assimilate the law of civil and criminal responsibility. He moved.

Amendment proposed— In page 1, line 10, after the word ' dispute,' to insert the words ' between employers and workinen.'"—(Mr. Salter.)

Question proposed, "That those words be there inserted."


thought there was some point in the argument of the hon. and learned Member when he pointed out that there should be some definition of the words "trade disputes," and he would consider that point, and endeavour to find a definition. But this Amendment went a great deal further. The hon. and learned Gentleman had pointed out that these words appeared in the Act of 1875. In that Act they had had a judicial construction placed upon them which if it were extended to this clause would greatly limit the operation of the clause. The words "disputes between employers and workmen" had been held to mean a dispute between an employer and his workmen, and that would limit the operation of this clause to what were called primary strikes which were strikes between one employer and his workmen. The clause would have no operation whatever in what were termed secondary strikes which were due not to a grievance between an employer and his workmen, but were due to men abstaining from work in sympathy with other workmen who for some cause had struck. The principle raised by the Amendment was a very wide one, because the whole policy of this Bill was founded on the established right of workmen for any reason which they in their judgment thought sufficient to abstain from work. They had a right to abstain from work if they had a grievance; or because they objected to some action on the part of their employer in refusing to support the action of the men. His hon. and learned friend proposed by his Amendment that this clause should be limited in its operation to disputes between an employer and his workmen, and that being so the workmen who abstained from work out of sympathy with their fellows in the employment of others would not come under the operation of the clause. But if a number of men employed by an employer struck work and that employer declined to meet the case of the union, the men of that union employed by other employers had a perfect right to say that they we aid abstain from working unless the terms of the union were conceded. His hon. friend had called attention to the very important passage in the Report of the Royal Commission as to their reason for omitting after the words "trade dispute"the words "between employers and workmen."In that passage the Royal Commission reported that it was impossible to draw a distinction between a primary and secondary strike.


said the point made by the hon. and learned Gentleman hardly bore out his contention, because if he looked again at the report he would see that what the Commission recommended was that the criminal law laid down by the Act of 1875 should be amended. He thought the Commission were right. The one thing this Bill did not propose to do was to amend the criminal law. The Committee were not here dealing with the case of civil liability at all. He agreed with every word the Attorney-General said with reference to sympathetic strikes in relation to the criminal law, and he really did not think the question would arise in reference to a small action. By eliminating the words with regard to civil liabilities they would be able to prosecute a man for something for which they could not bring a civil action against him. That was a very strange result. He should have thought that the real thing they wanted to do by this Act was to amend the criminal law as suggested by the Commission. What the House would have liked to have heard from the Attorney-General was what he meant by a trade dispute, and how far it went. Did it go far beyond the questions between workmen and employers, whether they took it as a primary, secondary or sympathetic strike? If it did, he thought the Attorney-General ought to have told the Committee whether he meant it to go as far as employers, merchants, dealers, or traders wishing, for instance, to make a ring and run up prices. Did the hon. and learned Gentleman mean that in those cases they were to employ any of the men allowed by this Bill for the purpose of carrying that out?


They can do it now.


said they might be able to do it in certain circumstances, but it entirely depended on the methods they employed. But he understood that the Attorney-General did not mean that. At any rate, trade disputes ought to be denned, and he understood the hon. and learned Gentleman had underaken to put in a definition.


said it was pretty clear and perfectly understood that the term "trade dispute," related mainly if not solely to disputes arising from t le exercise by trade unions of their functions,


said it might be that they all knew what they meant to convey, but the matter had to be stated in words which would bear out that meaning in law. Might he point out another difficulty, namely, that this Act might be cited as the Trade Disputes Act, 1906, and the Trade Union Acts, 1871 and 1876, and together as the Trade Union Acts, 1871 to 1906. What would be the effect of that? Would they read '" trade dispute "as something different in each of those Acts, or would they read it as having one meaning as regarded them all. If so, what was to be that meaning? The matter certainly required looking into and clearing up, and he earnestly hoped the Attorney-General would not leave the words as they stood, in the hope that the Courts would thoroughly understand what the House of Commons intended.

MR. LYTTELTON (St. George's, Hanoversquare)

said that there ought to be some more exact definition of "trade dispute." He claimed some right to speak on this matter, because some years ago he wrote a pamphlet on the subject of trade disputes, which for a long time slept, until a discussion arose three or four years ago, when he believed he was claimed by the trade unions as an ally and as having written to the best of his ability in order to secure them equality of play with the federation of employers. Therefore, he trusted that from anything he might say now it would not be considered that he had in any way altered his opinion as to perfect equality between the federation of employers and the trade unions. He asked both sides of the Committee to consider whether they were really aware of the very wide scope of this clause. In its present form it would enable the utmost tyranny to be used by a combination of employers against a competitor, or by trade unions against workmen who did not belong to a union. There was a remedy for small employers against combinations. There ought to be remedies when measures were taken by a powerful trade union to coerce the freedom of those outside who did not wish to belong to the union. Did hon. Members below the gangway desire legislation giving them privileges and immunities in cases where there was no question of a strike?, He appealed to them to say why they should be absolved from many acts which would otherwise be illegal. He thought the Committee ought to learn from the real authors of the Bill what their intention was in regard to this matter. Did the Leaders of the Labour Party desire when a conflict arose between great rings of employers, that those employers should have the privileges of this Act and the immunities granted by this Act in order to assist them in fighting to crush out competition among themselves?

MR. LAMBTON (Durham. S.E.)

thought there ought to be some definition of a trade dispute. It was no use simply replying that they were laying down words that had been inserted in an Act already in existence. Obviously, it was necessary that the Attorney-General should give a definition in the Act itself of the term "trade disputes."


said in answer to what had fallen from the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Dublin University, it appeared to him that the first thing the Committee had to do was to make up its mind what was intended, and then see that the words used would carry out that intention. There had been considerable discussion upon this matter, and some forcible observations had been made by the right hon. Gentleman the Member for St. George's, Hanover Square, with regard to the possible operation of this Bill in reference to rings and trusts and organisations of that character. As he understood the Bill, there was no such intention entertained by its framers. No one had contemplated that the trade dispute referred to should be a trade dispute of the character known as trade competition. They knew that the law on this subject had been clear since the Mogul case, and in any event it was not necessary to have any controversy as to what the law was in relation to that question, because it was not intended that this Bill should in any way change the law applicable to this subject. After what had fallen from the learned Attorney-General, it seemed to him quite unnecessary that they should discuss this point at all, because the Attorney-General had said that he would consider some words to prevent the application of this section to that class of competition. Therefore, he thought that it would be better if those who had raised this point would agree to leave the consideration of the question for the present and deal with it when the limiting words which had been promised were brought up on the Report stage, if the words now in the clause were not considered sufficiently strong. The real question was, did they intend that the Bill should be so drafted and so worked as to protect those who had come out in a secondary or sympathetic strike. That was the real question. The limiting words introduced under the Amendment would have the effect, particularly when read in conjunction with such observations as had been made in the case of "Quinn v. Leathern," of limiting the operation of this clause to a dispute between an employer and his workmen. If there was no dispute between an employer and his workmen and the men had gone out on strike in sympathy with the workmen of other employers, in order to ameliorate the condition of those engaged in a particular trade, that would constitute a sympathetic strike, and if they did not apply this clause to sympathetic strikes, they would be taking away one of the main advantages of the Bill. They ought to devote their attention to ascertaining whether these words amounted to preventing the operation of this clause to secondary strikes. His right hon. friend the Member for the University of Dublin had told them that under the Act of 1875, from what had been stated in the case of "Quinn v. Leathern,"the words "employer and workmen," would be understood and defined by Judges as meaning an employer and his workmen, and therefore it was understood that if there was a prosecution under the Act of 1875 against those who had come out under a sympathetic or secondary strike, they would not be protected from a criminal prosecution by virtue of the Act of 1875. The Bill made this difference, that it omitted the words "employer and work- men" because of the dangerous meaning; which had been given to those words.


said it was quite true that they left out those words, but the section they were discussing did not mean the criminal law, but merely the civil law.


said he agreed entirely, but the right hon. Gentleman's observations were strong arguments in favour of having the clause as they had now got it. If the criminal law was to be interpreted as limiting the immunity to men who struck because of a dispute between them and their employer, it was high time that it was amended. He thought they were in complete agreement that this law ought not to operate so as to make those who took part in a sympathetic strike liable to a criminal prosecution. They were seeking to assimilate the civil law to the criminal law, and if his right hon. friend said he did not desire that there should be the limitation in the criminal law upon those words which the Law Lords had indicated might be placed upon them, it must follow if they were seeking to bring the civil law into harmony with the criminal law of conspiracy they must equally apply the same reasoning to the civil law. He did not expect that his right hon. and learned friend would agree with that, because he had already stated that he was opposed to extending the immunity from prosecution under the criminal law to immunity from any action under the civil law. He quite understood that that was so, but it was on this point that they were in absolute disagreement, and his view was that they should place the civil law upon the same footing as the criminal law in regard to conspiracy. That was to say, that the immunity in reference to conspiracy should be the same under the criminal as under the civil law. If they were right in that view, it must follow from what had been said that they were consistent, and justified in the contention, that they must leave out the words which were sought to be introduced and which would have a limiting effect. Speaking with some little experience and knowledge of the difficulties which arose, he thought it was very necessary that they should leave out those words; if they inserted the Amendment the effect would he that they would cut away a very considerable portion of the protection intended to be given to the trade unions by virtue of the Bill. He hoped, therefore, that the Committee would not consider this Amendment favourably, but would reject it by a large majority.

MR. BONAR LAW (Camberwell, Dulwich)

said the lion, and learned Gentleman opposite when he rose made a statement with which he entirely agreed, to the effect that their first duty was to find out what they wanted, and then try to carry it out. He thought the hon. Member was going to give them some light upon the questions put by his right hon. friend the Member for St. George's, Hanover Square. He did, at any rate, deal with one of them, and stated that in his judgment this Bill ought not to cover trade combinations, and he quite agreed with that. The definition of the Attorney-General, if he gave one, he was sure would cover such cases as that. His right hon. friend put another case equally pertinent to which no answer had been given. He asked the Attorney-General now to give an answer to that question. Did he mean the term "trade dispute "To include such a case as that which had been cited? Would it include a case where, although no strike was going on at all, a trade union nevertheless desired to make all the employees in a particular works members of the union, and drive out all non-union men? Did the Attorney - General mean this Bill to give immunity against individual action in such cases as that? The answer to that question would decide his vote. If the hon. and learned Gentleman said that he was going to define "trade dispute "In such a way that trade disputes under this Bill would not give to those who were engaged in them special privileges to tyrannise over other workers, then he would not vote for the Amendment.


I am surprised at this Question being asked it is so elementary.


said the hon. and learned Gentleman had not understood his point at all. He admitted that workers had a right to strike, but what he asked was this: Did he mean that they were to have immunity under this to perform acts which would be illegal Bill on the part of anybody else in order to drive out non-union men?


said trade unionists had a right to say that they would not work with non-union men, and if they said so not in units, but collectively, they rendered themselves liable to no action. The test in every case was whether the act which was done collectively would, if it were done by a single person, be a tortious act. If a single man had a right to say that he would not work with non-union men, twenty, fifty, or 100 men had collectively the right to say the same thing.

MR. CLEMENT EDWARDS (Denbigh District)

said there was another important matter which would happen if the Amendment were carried. Some of the most serious disputes in this country had been disputes between one branch of labour and another branch of labour over what were called demarcations of work. If this Amendment were carried limiting trade disputes merely to those between employers and their workmen, trade union workmen would be placed under disadvantages in a strike of that sort as compared with those who were striking in connection with some difference with the employers. It had been said by the right hon. and learned Member for St. George's, Hanover Square, that this clause placed union men in a privileged position because it gave them an immunity from the law which was not enjoyed by any other class. That statement was not correct, and he challenged the right hon. and learned Member to point to a single case, apart from those to which recent decisions in connection with trade disputes related, where other members of the community had been found guilty in a civil action of conspiracy in respect of an act which was not conspiracy if done by single individuals. This clause sought not to place union men in a privileged position, not to give them immunity as against other classes of the community, but to place them in precisely the position occupied by other classes of the community as determined in such cases as the Mogul shipping case. He thought it would be a pity if it went forth that they were supporting a clause giving immunity when they were simply seeking to remove an anomaly in relation to trade unions.


said he wanted to say one word more. It was said that the workmen were not protected from civil action in the case of a sympathetic strike. He understood that a sympathetic striker was a man who went out from his work, not because he had any difference with his employer, but because he desired to assist another. That was not a dispute between the employer and his workman, but the act was done "' in contemplation or furtherance of a trade dispute between employers and workmen." If this clause was amended as he proposed the benefit of it would go to all those who acted in furtherance of a trade dispute between employers and workmen. It appeared to him that the sympathetic striker would be acting in furtherance of such a dispute.


asked whether the Attorney-General would promise to introduce a

definition of "trade dispute." It was a matter of extreme importance, and it should be clearly defined what a trade dispute was. He did think that they ought to know.


I feel the importance of the point raised, and I will consider favourably the introduction of some words to meet the difficulty. I will also consider the introduction of some words which will amend Section 3 of the Act of 1875, which would create a variation between the civil and the criminal law in regard to conspiracy. But I cannot pledge myself absolutey.


Am I to assume it any definition which the Attorney-General makes will not exclude from the Bill the case of unionists wishing to coerce non-unionists? If this Bill is to give liberty to coerce non-unionists, I hope my hon. friend will divide on the Amendment.


I may undertake to define "trade dispute," but not general principles.

Question put.

The Committee divided: Ayes 42; Noes 326. (Division List No. 280.)

Balcarres, Lord Finch, Rt. Hon. George H. Rawlinson, John Frederick P
Banbury, Sir FrederickGeorge Haddock, George R. Roberts, S. (Sheffield,Ecclesall
Barrie, H.T.(Londonderry,N.) Hamilton, Marquess of Salter, Arthur Clavell
Beach, Hn.Michael Hugh Hicks Hardy, Laurence(Kent, Ashf'rd Smith, F.E. (Liverpool, Walton
Bowles, G. Stewart Hervey,F W.F(BuryS.Edm'ds Starkey, John R.
Bridgeman, W. Clive Hill, Sir Clement (Shrewsbury) Talbot, Rt.Hn.J.G.(Oxf'dUniv.
Campbell, Rt. Hon. J. H. M. Hunt, Rowland Thomson, W. Mitchell (Lanark
Carson, Rt. Hon. Sir Edw. H. Law, Andrew Bonar (Dulwich) Thornton, Percy M.
Cavendish, Rt. Hn.VictorC.W. Long,Rt.Hn.Walter(DoblinS. Williams, Col. R. (Dorset, W.)
Cecil, Evelyn (Aston Manor) Lyttelton, Rt. Hon. Alfred Wortley, Rt. Hon. C. B. Stuart-
Cecil, Lord John P. Joicey- Mason, James F. (Windsor)
Cecil, Lord R. (Marylebone, E.) Morpeth, Viscount TELLERS FOR THE AYES
Craig, Chas. Curtis (Antrim, S.) Nicholson,Wm. G. (Petersfield) Viscount Valentia and Mr.
Douglas, Rt. Hon. A. Akers- Nield, Herbert Forster.
Faber, George Denison (York) Parkes, Ebenezer
Fell, Arthur Pease, Herbert Pike(Darlington
Abraham, William (Cork, N.E.) Alden, Percy Baker, Sir John (Portsmouth)
Abraham, William (Rhondda) Allen, Charles P. (Stroud) Baker, Joseph A. (Finsbury, E.
Acland, Francis Dyke Asquith,Rt. Hn. Herbert Henry Balfour, Robert (Lanark)
Adkins, W. Ryland D. Astbury, John Meir Baring, Godfrey (Isle of Wight)
Agnew, George William Atherley-Jones, L. Barlow, JohnEmmott(S'merseset
Barlow, Percy (Bedford) Duncan, J. H. (York, Otley) Joyce, Michael
Barnard, E. B. Duncan, Robert(Lanark, Gov'n Kearley, Hudson E.
Barnes, G. N. Dunn, A. Edward (Camborne) Kekewich, Sir George
Barry, E. (Cork, S.) Dunne,Major E.Martin(Walsall Kelley, George D.
Beauchamp, E. Edwards, Clement (Denbigh) Kennedy, Vincent Paul
Beaumont, W. C. B. (Hexham) Edwards, Enoch (Hanley) King, Alfred John (Knutsford)
Bell, Richard Edwards, Frank (Radnor) Laidlaw, Robert
Bellairs, Carlyon Esmonde, Sir Thomas Lamb, Ernest H. (Rochester)
Belloc,Hilaire Joseph Peter R. Essex, R. W. Lambert, George
Benn, SirJ.Williams(Devonp'rt Eve, Harry Trelawney Lambton,Hn.Fredk. William
Benn, W. (T'w'rHamlets,S.Geo Farrell, James Patrick Lamont, Norman
Berridge, T. H. D. Fenwick, Charles Layland Barratt, Francis
Bethell, J. H. (Essex, Romford Ferens, T. R. Lever, A.Levy (Essex,Harwich
Bethell, T. R. (Essex, Maldon Ffrench, Peter Levy, Maurice
Birrell, Rt. Hon. Augustine Findlay, Alexander Lewis, John Herbert
Black, Arthur W. (Bedfordshire Flavin, Michael Joseph Lloyd-George, Rt. Hon. David.
Boland, John Flynn, James Christopher Lough, Thomas
Bolton, T. D. (Derbyshire, N.E. Freeman-Thomas, Freeman Lundon, W.
Boulton, A. C. F. (Ramsey) Fuller, John Michael F. Lupton, Arnold
Brace, William Fullerton, Hugh Macdonald, J. R. (Leicester)
Bramsdon, T. A. Gardner,Col. Alan(Hereford,S. Macdonald,J.M.(Falkirk B'ghs)
Brigg, John Gibb, James (Harrow) MacVeagh, Jeremiah (Down, S.
Brocklehurst, W. B. Gill, A. H. MacVeigh,Charles(Donegal,E.
Brodie, H. C. Ginnell, L. M'Callum, John M.
Brooke, Stopford Gladstone,Rt. Hn. Herbert John M'Hugh, Patrick A.
Brunner, J. F. L. (Lancs.,Leigh) Glover, Thomas M'Kean, John
Bryce, J.A. (InvernessBurghs) Goddard, Daniel Ford M'Laren, Sir C. B. (Leicester)
Buchanan, Thomas Ryburn Gooch, George Peabody M'Laren, H. D. (Stafford, W.)
Burns, Rt. Hon. John Greenwood, G. (Peterborough) M'Micking, Major G.
Burt, Rt. Hon. Thomas Grey, Rt. Hon. Sir Edward Maddison, Frederick
Buxton, Rt.Hn. SydneyCharles Gulland, John W. Mallet, Charles E.
Byles, William Pollard Gurdon, Sir W. Brampton Manfield, Harry (Northants)
Cairns, Thomas Haldane, Rt. Hn. Richard B. Marks,G.Croydon (Launceston)
Campbell-Bannerman, Sir H. Hall, Frederick Marnham, F. J.
Carr-Gomm, H. W. Halpin, J. Mason, A. E. W. (Coventry)
Causton,Rt.Hn.RichardKnight Hammond, John Massie, J.
Chance, Frederick William Harcourt, Right Hon. Lewis Masterman, C. F. G.
Channing, Francis Allston Hardie,J.Keir(MerthyrTydvil) Meagher, Michael
Cheetham, John Frederick Harmsworth, Cecil B. (Worc'r) Meehan, Patrick A.
Cherry, Rt. Hon. R. Harrington, Timothy Micklem, Nathaniel
Churchill, Winston Spencer Hart-Davies, T. Mond, A.
Claney, John Joseph Harvey, A. G. C. (Rochdale) Montagu, E. S.
Clarke, C. Goddard Haslam, James (Derbyshire) Mooney, J. J.
Cleland, J. W. Haworth, Arthur A. Morgan, G. Hay (Cornwall)
Clough, W. Hay, Hon. Claude George Morgan, J. Lloyd(Carmarthen)
Clynes, J. R. Hazel, Dr. A. E. Morse, L. L.
Coats, Sir T.Glen(Renfrew, W.) Hazleton, Richard Morton, Alpheus Cleophas
Cobbold, Felix Thornley Hedges, A. Paget Murnaghan, George
Cogan, Denis J. Henderson, Arthur (Durham, Murray, James
Collins, Stephen (Lambeth) Henry, Charles S. Myer, Horatio
Cooper, G. J. Higham, John Sharp Nicholson,Charles N.(Doncast'r
Corbett, A. Cameron (Glasgow) Hills, J. W. Nolan, Joseph
Corbett,C.H. (SussexE.Grinst'd Hobart, Sir Robert Norman, Henry
Cornwall, Sir Edwin A. Hobhouse, Charles E. H. Norton, Capt. Cecil William
Cotton, Sir H. J. S. Hodge, John Nussey, Thomas Willans
Cowan, W. H. Hogan, Michael Nuttall, Harry
Cox, Harold Holden, E. Hopkinson O'Brien,Kendal (TipperaryMid
Craig, Herbert J. (Tynemouth) Horniman, Emslie John O'Connor,James (Wicklow,W.)
Crean, Eugene Hudson, Walter O'Connor, John (Kildare, N.)
Crooks, William Hut ton, Alfred Eddison O'Connor, T. P. (Liverpool)
Crosfield, A. H. Hyde, Clarendon O'Doherty, Philip
Cullinan, J. lllingworth, Percy H. O'Donnell, C. J. (Walworth)
Dalziel, James Henry Isaacs, Rufus Daniel O'Donnell, T. (Kerry, W.)
Davies, Timothy (Fulham) Jackson, R. S. O'Dowd, John
Delany, William Jacoby, James Alfred O'Grady, J.
Dewar, Arthur (Edinburgh,S.) Jardine, Sir J. O'Hare Patrick
Dickinson, W. H. (St. Pancras,N. Jenkins, J. O'Malley, William
Dilke, Rt. Hon. Sir Charles Johnson, John (Gateshead) O'Mara, James
Dobson, Thomas W. Johnson, W. (Nuneaton) O'Shaughnessy, P. J.
Dolan, Charles Joseph Jones, SirD.Brynmor(Swansea Parker, James (Halifax)
Duckworth, James Jones, Leif (Appleby) Partington, Oswald
Duffy, William J. Jones, William(Carnarvonshire) Paul, Herbert
Duncan, C.(Barrow-in-Furness) Jowett, F. W. Paulton, James Mellor
Pearce, Robert (Staffs, Leek) Seddon, J. Vivian, Henry
Philipps, Col. Ivor(Southamton Shackleton, David James Walker, H. De R. (Leicester)
Philipps, Owen (J. (Pembroke) Shaw, Rt. Hon.T.(Hawick,B.) Wallace, Robert
Pickersgill, Edward Hare Sheehan, Daniel Daniel Walsh, Stephen
Pirie, Duncan V. Shipman, Dr. John G. Walters, John Tudor
Pollard, Dr. Simon, John Allsebrook Walton, Sir John L. (Leeds, S.)
Powell, Sir Francis Sharp Sinclair, Rt. Hon. John Walton, Joseph (Barnsley)
Power, Patrick Joseph Smeaton, Donald Mackenzie Ward, John (Stoke upon Trent
Price, C. E. (Edinb'gh Central Smyth, Thomas F.(Leitrim, S.) Ward,W. Dudley (Southamp'tn
Radford, G. H. Snowden, P. Wardle, George J.
Raphael, Herbert H. Soares, Ernest J. Warner, Thomas Courtenay T.
Reddy, M. Spicer, Sir Albert Wason,John Cathcart(Orkney)
Redmond, John E. (Waterford) Stanger, H. Y. Waterlow, D. S.
Redmond, William (Clare) Stanley, Hn. A. Lyulph (Chesh. Watt, H. Anderson
Richards, T. F.(Wolverh'mpt'n Steadman, W. C. Weir, James Galloway
Richardson, A. Stewart, Halley (Greenock) White, J. D. (Dumbartonshire)
Rickett, J. Compton Stewart-Smith, D. (Kendal) White, Luke (York, E.R.)
Ridsdale, E. A. Strachey, Sir Edward White, Patrick (Meath,North
Roberts, Charles H. (Lincoln) Strauss, E. A. (Abingdon) Whitehead, Rowland
Roberts, G. H. (Norwich) Stuart, James (Sunderland) Whitley, J. H. (Halifax)
Robertson,Sir G.Scott(Bradfrd Sullivan, Donal Wiles, Thomas
Robertson, J. M. (Tyneside) Summerbell, T. Wilkie, Alexander
Robson, Sir William Snowdon Sutherland, J. E. Wilson,Henry J.(York, W. R.)
Rogers, F. E. Newman Taylor, John W. (Durham) Wilson, J. H. (Middlesbrough)
Rose, Charles Day Thomas, Sir A. (Glamorgan, E.) Wilson, P. W. (St. Pancras, S.)
Rowlands, J. Thomasson, Franklin Wilson, W. T. (Westhoughton)
Runciman, Walter Thompson,J. W.H. (Somerset E. Woodhouse,SirJ.T.(Huddersf'd
Samuel, Herbert L. (Cleveland) Thorne, William Yoxall, James Henry
Schwann, C. Duncan (Hyde) Torrance, Sir A. M.
Schwann, SirC E. (Manchester) Toulmin, George TELLERS FOR THE NOES
Sears, J. E. Ure, Alexander Mr. Whiteley and Mr.
Seaverns, J. H. Verney, F. W. J. A. Pease.
LORD R. CECIL (Marylebone, E.)

said he desired to move an Amendment with a view to securing that the clause should not be used to protect those who under the guise of a trade dispute would be really trying to secure some other indirect object. He thought he would at any rate nave the support of the hon. Member for the Denbigh District in making this proposition. Indeed he had some hope that he would act as teller with him in the Lobby, because the hon. Member had said more than once that what he desired in this Bill was that trade unionists should not be placed in an advantageous position as compared with other workmen, but in the same position as everybody else in regard to the law of conspiracy. The hon. Member for the Denbigh District upon a former occasion said that what trade unions were asking for was that the law as laid down in the Mogul case should be the law applied to trade unionists in trade disputes. Now the words of the Amendment which he had to propose were taken from the judgment given in the Mogul case. His Amendment would made the clause read— An act done in pursuance of an agreement or combination by two or more persona shall, if done in contemplation or furtherance of a trade dispute for the purpose of lawful gain o-the enjoyment of lawful rights, lint be action able unless the act, if done without any such agreement or combination, would be actionable as a tort. It had already been pointed out that they had no clear definition of a trade dispute and the words used in the Conspiracy Act of 1875 extended far beyond any disputes: between trade unions and employers, be use there was nothing about trade unions in the Conspiracy Act of 1875. This Bill was an Amendment of the Conspiracy Act of 1875. Therefore, a trade dispute when it came to be discussed in the Law Courts would have to be denned by the Judges and they would have to say what they conceived the words to mean in their ordinary acceptation. He could see nothing in this Bill to limit them to any commercial dispute having for its main purpose and object some trade advantage or some trade object. He thought these words would quite clearly apply to such disputes, and he thought everybody intended that the clause should apply to the action of employers and employees with reference to their work. Any combination of employers would be protected under this clause in their action against workmen, and he suggested that unless words such as he was suggesting were put in they would be able to use this clause so as to secure objects very different from trade objects. It was clear that there might be amongst employers an agreement to act in such a way as to hinder work, not to promote their own lawful right, but with the object of injuring some particular business. As far as he could read the clause such action would unquestionably be assisted by this Bill, because it would be quite easy for the employers to represent such a matter as a trade dispute, and it would really be a dispute between employers and workmen which might involve the dismissal of workmen by a group of employers and would come under the words— in furtherance of a trade dispute …noble actionable unless the act, if done without any such agreement or combination, would be actionable as a tort. Let the Committee consider another instance. Let them assume that a large combination was formed for the promotion of some kind of protection. Let them assume also a very large federation of employers formed with the object of securing the passage of some particular modification of a tariff in their favour. He did not think that was an unknown thing. If they passed this clause as it stood they would at once legalise a gigantic combination of employers to dismiss the whole of their workmen unless they voted for a particular proposal in which the employers happened to be interested. He had expressed in this House and elsewhere his views upon protection principally on account of the evil which might be involved by great combinations of employers endeavouring to promote their own trade interests in this way. He wished to point out to the Committee that if they passed this clause as it stood they would, be putting into the hands of large employers a very strong weapon. He therefore hoped that some limitation of the words would be accepted. If the words he had suggested were unsatisfactory let the Government suggest other words. At any rate he thought some limitation should be put upon this power of combination.

Amendment proposed— In page 1, line 10, after the word ' dispute,' to insert 'for the purpose of lawful gain or the enjoyment of lawful right.' "—(Lord Robert Cecil.)


said the Amendment would destroy the whole efficacy of the clause. It was proposed to leave the law in the extremely unsatisfactory condition in which it stood at present. The noble Lord suggested that the test of the legitimacy or illegitimacy of combination was the question whether its object was "for the purpose of lawful gain or the enjoyment of lawful rights." It afforded no criterion as to whether the gain or the right to be asserted were lawful. It was because there was no such test that the present condition of the law-was unsatisfactory, and this clause was framed to afford a test. He night allude to some of the difficulties in connection with the law as they found it, and which were due entirely to the fact that the tribunal must at some stage or other express an opinion with regard to the objects of combination, and declare it legal or illegal having regard to those objects. The hon. Member had given them a case of combination of employers to restrict their employment to persons who were not trade unionists. He strongly disapproved of that, and said it was unreasonable, but he had met some people who thought it most right. Who was to decide whether it was right or wrong? If the law remained as it was now or with these words in the clause, there was absolutely no test in Heaven and earth, except the opinion of the particular person who was asked to determine whether the object of the combination was lawful or unlawful. Take the judgment of Lord Brampton. He seemed to throw the objects of trades unions into two categories. The noble Lord said that with regard to some "it is quite clear that they are lawful." For instance, if the object of a trade union or a strike was to improve the conditions of labour, to raise the rate of wages, or improve the lot of the employed, then it was clearly lawful; but, if the object was to restrict the employers from giving the union men employment then it was clearly unlawful. Supposing they got a combination to confine trade union machinery to skilled workmen, would that be lawful or unlawful? Who was to say? There was also the case of restricting the output. Was that to be a lawful or an unlawful object? There was, moreover, the case as to the number of machines a particular man had to look after: trade unions contend one thing and employers another. If trades unions caused a strike to effect their views, was that lawful or unlawful? Unless the legality of the act of the individual was taken to be the test of the legality of the acts of the combination, there was no satisfactory test which it was possible td apply. They knew by that at once whether the Act was right or wrong. If it was right, it might be done in combination; if it was wrong, it might not be so done. If the Committee said that these bodies might pursue objects lawful and assert rights lawful, they left the whole question in the dark.


, as representing a manufacturing and mining district, said he devoted some time last session to service on the Law Committee which considered the Bill of that year. He was extremely anxious, more anxious than he could describe, that wise legislation on this subject should be amongst the achievements of the present session. He regarded with nothing less than grief the misfortune which befell the Bill in 1905, but that misfortune would be a calamity in 1906 if no legislation took place. He hoped that neither side would seek a forensic victory. This legislation affected the hourly and daily life of millions of our countrymen, and he listened with some impatience to the ingenuity of his learned friends when such real and vast interests were at stake. He also felt regret for the language used by some speakers on the Opposition side of the House toward trade unionists. They were described by the hon. Member sitting near him as a ragged army. They had before them day by day and night after night representatives of that Party on the benches below the Gangway, and he hoped they would not think it an undue liberty on his part if he ventured to say that there was no class of Members in this House which was held in greater respect and no Members who were listened to with more attention. One reason in favour of the Amendment was that it would limit the range of trade disputes. But what had been the action of the trade unionists? It was common knowledge there had been some great and deplorable strikes entailing much suffering, but to every one strike caused by trade unions a hundred which would have caused much injustice and suffering to the working classes had been averted by them in an honourable manner and with a dignified spirit. He believed that the passage of a measure something on the lines suggested by the Bill would remove many difficulties.


Order, order ! The hon. Baronet is getting a little wide of the subject. Will he kindly confine himself to the Amendment?


did not desire to trespass beyond the proper limits of the debate, but he confessed he was so much moved by what hon. Members on the Opposition benches had said that he could not help expressing some portion at least of his sentiments upon the question.


said his objection to the Amendment of the noble Lord was that it was vague. All they asked was that trade unions should be placed upon the same footing as other people.


said the words suggested by the noble Lord seemed to his lay mind to be very reasonable. They would have great effect and great weight. They were "for the purpose of lawful gain or the enjoyment of lawful rights." It seemed to him the only object in having lawyers, judges, and law courts was to interpret what was lawful. No one in this House or outside it wanted to do anything that was unlawful. Hon. Gentlemen below the Gangway had not, he thought, read the Bill, because the avowed object of this proposal was to render acts done by a certain number of people legal which up to the present time had been illegal. They ought to be careful that while a combination under this clause would be authorised to do what they had not been authorised to do before it would be— For the purpose of lawful gain or the enjoyment of lawful rights. He asked the Attorney-General if he could assure him that the Courts of law did not know what a lawful thing was, and, if he could do that, he was not sure that he should vote for the Amendment. He could not help thinking, as a layman, that it was perfectly evident the Courts of law must know what a lawful thing was, and, if he was right in thinking that, he should support the noble Lord if he went to a division. Allusion had been made to words used by hon. Members above the gangway towards trade unionists, but there was only one hon. Member who had said anything which might be taken as offensive. He was sure all the hon. Members above the gangway, including himself, had no wish to say anything offensive to trade unionists; they wished to conduct the debate in an amicable way. They; had, however, the right to their feelings and the right to express them, but he hoped they would do so in a proper manner. He believed his hon. friend who made use of the expression only did so on the spur of the moment.


said, in asking leave to withdraw his Amendment, he would only say that no answer whatever had been made to the substance of the argument he had ventured to address to the Committee. [Cries of "Oh, oh!"] Then hon. Members opposite did not attach the same meaning to the English language as he did. It had been said with a great deal of force that these words were vague, and that they were unsatisfactory because they were vague. The hon. Member for Denbigh said that tersely and the Attorney-General said it at greater length. He admitted it was hard to draw the line between the kind of combination it was desired to admit and the kind of combination which would be a great danger to the State. But in the form of the clause they were legalising all combination which could not possibly be said to have a trade object. He was sure, in the form in which the clause was drafted, it would be made use of in a serious way injurious to the State, and that hon. Gentlemen below the gangway and opposite would not be the last to complain of it. He asked leave to withdraw his Amendment.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.


proposed to insert the words, "as to wages or other conditions] of labour" after the word "dispute "That could not be characterised as vague, and therefore would not be open to the objections raised by the Attorney-General to the last Amendment. His object was, as far as possible, to define to what extent an authorised combination of workmen or other persons could be pursued. He thought it was very necessary that some definition should be put in. The hon. and learned Gentleman had recently said that this Bill was confined to trade unions, and was intended to deal with them, but according to the title it was a Bill to provide for the regulation of trade unions and trade disputes, and in Clause 5 it said, "this Act may be cited as the Trade Disputes Act, 1906, and the Trade Union Acts, 1871 to 1876, and these Acts may be cited together as the Trade Union Acts, 1871 and 1906. Therefore it was very evident that a definition such as this should be inserted unless it was intended that it should apply to every dispute in any trade of any sort or kind. One of the chief objects of the Amendment was to prevent non-unionists being deprived of work. He did not think anyone would say that a man was not entitled to work because he was not a member of a trade union. Trade unionists themselves said that unless the employer dismissed any non-union men he might have in his employ and replaced them with union men, other persons with whom he dealt would have men withdrawn from their work. That was a very serious thing. He believed if, when this Bill was passed, such a thing as that were done it would arouse such feeling in the country that the result would be very different from what hon. Gentlemen below the gangway anticipated. He thought they would have Pinkerton men, a type well-known in the United States, brought over here. [A LABOUR MEMBER: They would soon go back.] The hon. Gentleman evidently thought the power behind trade unions so strong—and he presumed he meant that they would not be very particular as to the means they used— that these people would go back, but he could not be so sure. It must be remembered that employers and employed both came from the same stock. They were both Englishmen as a rule, and they had the same feelings. He hoped his Amendment would be accepted if only for that reason. He pointed out that there might be, through no fault of the hon. and learned Gentleman, no Report stage. The first thing to do to make sure of a Report stage was to accept an Amendment. He asked the right hon. Gentleman to accept his, and if he did not like it when the Report stage was reached, he could move to omit it.

Amendment proposed— In page 1, line 10, after the word ' dispute,' to insert the words ' as to wages or other (condition: of labour.' "—(Sir Frederick Banbury.)


said the hon. Baronet had made such a winning appeal to him that if he could have done so he should have quite cordially accepted his Amendment, but the objections to it were twofold. In the first place, it restricted the operation of this clause within very narrow limits, because it only legalised combinations which had for their object the improvement of the conditions of labour or the raising of wages, and shut out altogether other combinations which trade unionists might consider essential to their interests or the advancement or extension of their organisations which did not involve any broach of the law. The second objection was that it infringed the whole principle of the clause, because the object of the clause was to make it free to trade unionists to decide upon the policy which they should pursue. They were the best judges of that. The object of the clause was to give perfect freedom, with the one restriction that the conduct they decided upon must be lawful conduct if it were the conduct of an individual.

MR. STUART WORTLEY (Sheffield, Hallam)

said the remarkable thing about the Amendment was that it would not carry out the object which the hon. Baronet had in view. It would not exclude conduct which had for its ob- ject the shutting out of non-union men. It was none the less interesting and necessary to point out that, although it had been most forcibly brought to the attention of the Government, the clause as it stood went far beyond their avowed object, viz., the legalising of the application of the process of combination to all legitimate objects pursued by the employed. It could be shown to legalise combinations of a totally different kind and which, whilst it might not be possible to call them unlawful, wore yet most undesirable. Although this was the second opportunity offered to the Attorney-General, he had not shown the slightest desire to exclude these other political and trade combinations from the very odious privilege of this clause, which would probably be forced upon the House by the Government majority and would legalise combinations which nobody by the widest possible stretch of imagination could describe as desirable.


said he really did not understand the speech of the hon. Gentleman. He had said he would consider the desirability of giving such a definition of "trade disputes" as to shut out disputes between traders and disputes not connected with the relations between employers and their workman.


said the last phrase of the right hon. Gentleman showed that they had not yet been able to make quite clear the point he had pressed upon him. The very disputes he referred to were disputes between employers and workmen, and they showed that they had a very real danger, which existed in a number of countries all over Europe and in America, to fear.


That is quite a different thing.


said it was not. They must have some limitation of "trade disputes" which would exclude those kinds of combinations and their actions which they had already alluded to and which formed a serious danger. Although the Attorney-General might not like their words, it would have been more satisfactory if he hail shown an appreciation of the arguments they had submitted and had made some attempt to deal with them.

Balcarres, Lord Forster, Henry William Salter, Arthur Clavell
Baling, Hon. Guy (Winchester) Hervey,F.W.F.(BuryS Edm'ds Smith. F.E.(Liverpool,Walton)
Barrie, H. T.(Londonderry.) Hill, Sir Clement (Shrewsbury) Talbot,Rt.Hn J. G. (Oxf'dUniv
Beach, Hn. Michael Hugh Hicks Hunt, Rowland Valentia, Viscount
Bowles, G. Stewart Law, Andrew Bonar (Dulwich Williams, Col. R. (Dorset, W.)
Carson, Rt Hn. Sir Edw. H. Lyttelton, Rt. Hn. Alfred Wortley, Rt. Hon. C. G. Stuart-
Corbett, A. Cameron (Glasgow) Mason, James F. (Windsor)
Craig, Chas, Curtis (Antrim, S.) Morpeth, Viscount TELLERS FOR THE AYES—Sir
Douglas, Rt. Hon. A. Akers- Nield, Herbert Frederick Banbury and
Faber, George Denison (York) Parkes, Ebenezer Lord Robert Cecil.
Fell, Arthur Pease,Herbert Pike(Darling ton
Finch, Rt. Hon. George H. Rawlinson, John Frederick P.
Abraham, William (Cork, N.E.) Clynes, J. R. Glover, Thomas
Abraham, William (Rhondda) Coats, Sir T. Glen(Renfrew,W.) Goddard, Daniel Ford
Acland, Francis Dyke Cobbold, Felix Thornley Gooch, George Peabody
Adkins, W. Ryland D. Cogan, Denis J. Greenwood, G. (Peterborough)
Agnew, George William Collins, Stephen (Lambeth) Grey, Rt. Hon. Sir Edward
Alden, Percy Collins, SirWm.J.(S.Pancras,W. Gulland, John W.
Astbury, John Meir Cooper, G. J. Hall, Frederick
Atherley-Jones,L. Corbett,C.H.(Sussex,E.Grinst'd Halpin, J.
Baker, Sir John (Portsmouth Cornwall, Sir Edwin A. Hammond, John
Baker, Joseph A. (Finsbury,E.) Cotton, Sir H.J.S. Harcourt, Rt. Hon. Lewis
Balfour, Robert (Lanark) Cowan, W. H. Hardie,J.Keir(Merthyr Tydvil)
Baring, Godfrey (Isle of Wight) Cox, Harold Hardy, George A. (Suffolk)
Barlow, JohnEmmott (Somerset Craig, Herbert J. (Tynemouth) Harmsworth, Cecil B. (Worc'r)
Barlow, Percy (Bedford) Crean, Eugene Harrington, Timothy
Barnard, E. B. Crooks, William Hart-Davies, T.
Barnes, G. N. Crosfield, A. H. Harvey, A. G. C. (Rochdale)
Barry, E. (Cork, S.) Cullinan, J. Haslam, James (Derbyshire)
Beaumont, Hubert(Eastbourne Dalziel, James Henry Haworth, Arthur A.
Beaumont, W. C. B. (Hexham) Davies, Timothy (Fulham) Hazel, Dr. A. E.
Bell, Richard Delany, William Hazleton, Richard
Bellairs, Carlyon Dewar,Arthur(Edinburgh, S.) Hedges, A. Paget
Benn, SirJ.Williams(Devonp'rt Dickinson, W.H.(St.Pancras,N. Henderson, Arthur (Durham)
Benn, W.(T'w'rHamlets,S.Geo. Dilke, Rt. Hon. Sir Charles Henry, Charles S.
Berridge, T. H. D. Dobson, Thomas W. Higham, John Sharp
Bethell, J. H. (Essex, Romford) Dolan, Charles Joseph Hills, J. W.
Bethell, T. R. (Essex, Maldon) Duckworth, James Hodge, John
Birrell, Rt. Hon. Augustine Duffy, William J. Hogan, Michael
Black,Arthur W.(Bedfordshire) Duncan, C. (Barrow-in-Furness Holden, E. Hopkinson
Boland, John Duncan, J. H. (York, Otley) Horniman, Emslie John
Bolton, T. D. (Derbyshire, N.E. Dunn, A. Edward (Camborne) Hudson, Walter
Boulton, A. C. F. (Ramsey) Dunne,Major E.Martin(Walsall Hutton, Alfred Eddison
Brace, William Edwards, Clement (Denbigh) Hyde, Clarendon
Bramsdon, T. A. Edwards, Enoch (Hanley) Illingworth, Percy H.
Brigg, John Edwards, Frank (Radnor) Isaacs, Rufus Daniel
Brodie, H. C. Esmonde, Sir Thomas Jackson, R. S.
Brooke, Stopford Essex, R. W. Jacoby, James Alfred
Brunner, J.F.L. (Lanes, Leigh) Eve, Harry Trelawney Jardine, Sir J.
Bryce, J. A. (Inverness Burghs) Farrell, James Patrick Jenkins, J.
Burns, Rt. Hon. John Fenwick, Charles Johnson, John (Gateshead)
Burl, Rt. Hon. Thomas Ferens, T. R. Johnson, W. (Nuneaton)
Buxton, Rt. Hn. Sydney Chas. Ffrench, Peter Jones,SirD. Brynmor(Swansea)
Byles, William Pollard Findlay, Alexander Jones, Leif (Appleby)
Cairns, Thomas Flavin, Michael Joseph Jones, William(Carnarvonshire
Carr-Gomm, H. W. Flynn, James Christopher Jowett, F. W.
Cherry, Rt. Hon. R. R. Fuller, John Michael F. Joyce, Michael
Clancy, John Joseph Fullerton, Hugh Kekewich, Sir George
Clarke, C. Goddard Gibb, James (Harrow) Kelley, George D.
Cleland, J. W. Gill, A. H. Kennedy, Vincent Paul
Clough, W. Ginnell, L. Laidlaw, Robert

Question put.

The Committee divided:—Aves, 30 Noes, 289. (Division List No. 281.)

Lamb, Ernest H. (Rochester) O'Dowd, John Stanley,Hn. A. Lyulph (Chesh.)
Lambert, George O'Grady, J. Steadman, W. C.
Lamont, Norman O'Hare, Patrick Stewart, Halley (Greenock)
Layland-Barratt, Francis O'Malley, William Strachey, Sir Edward
Lever, A. Levy (Essex,Harwich O'Mara, James Strauss, E. A. (Abingdon)
Levy, Maurice O'Shaughnessy, P. J. Stuart, James (Sunderland)
Lewis, John Herbert Parker, James (Halifax) Sullivan. Donal
Lloyd-George, Rt. Hn. David Partington, Oswald Summerbell, T.
Lough, Thomas Paul, Herbert Sutherland, J. E.
Lundon, W. Paulton, James Mellor Taylor, John W. (Durham)
Lupton, Arnold Pearce, Robert (Staffs, Leek) Thomas, Sir A. (Glamorgan, E.
Macdonald, J. R. (Leicester) Piekersgill, Edward Hare Thomasson, Franklin
Macdonald, J.M. (FalkirkB'gha Pollard, Dr. Thorne, William
Maclean, Donald Powell, Sir Francis Sharp Torrance, Sir A. M.
MacVeigh,Charles (Donegal, E.) Power, Patrick Joseph Toulmin, George
M'Callum, John M. Price, C. K. (Edinb'gh.Central) Verney, F. W.
M'Kean, John Radford, G. H. Vivian, Henry
M'Laren, Sir C. B. (Leicester) Raphael, Herbert H. Walker, H. De R. (Leicester)
M'Laren, H. D. (Stafford, W.) Reddy, M. Wallace, Robert
M'Micking, Major G. Redmond, William (Clare) Walsh, Stephen
Maddison, Frederick Richards,T. F. (Wolverhampt'n Walters, John Tudor
Mallett, Charles E.. Richardson, A. Walton, Sir John L. (Leeds, S.)
Manfield, Harry (Northants) Rickett, J. Compton Walton, Joseph (Barnsley)
Marks, G.Croydon(Launceston) Ridsdale, E. A. Ward, John (Stoke upon Trent)
Marnham, F. J. Roberts, Charles H. (Lincoln) Ward,W.Dudley(Southampt'n
Mason, A. E. W. (Coventry) Roberts, G. H. (Norwich) Wardle, George J.
Massie, J. Robertson, SirG.Scott(Bradf'rd Warner, Thomas Courtenay T
Masterman, C. F. G. Robertson, J. M. (Tyneside) Wason, JohnCathcart(Orkney)
Meagher, Michael Robson, Sir William Snowdon Waterlow, D. S.
Meehan, Patrick A. Rogers, F. E. Newman Watt, H. Anderson
Micklem, Nathaniel Rose, Charles Day Weir, James Galloway
Mond, A. Rowlands, J. White, J. D. (Dumbartonshire)
Montagu, E. S. Runciman, Walter White, Luke (York, E.R.)
Mooney, J. J. Schwann, C. Duncan (Hyde) White, Patrick(Meath, North)
Morse, L. L. Schwann, Sir C.E.(Manchester) Whitehead, Rowland
Morton, Alpheus Cleophas Scott,A.H.(Ashton-under-Lyne Whitley, J. H. (Halifax)
Murnaghan, George Sears, J. E. Wiles, Thomas
Murphy, John Seddon, J. Wilkie, Alexander
Murray, James Seely, Major J. B. Wills, Arthur Walters
Myer, Horatio Shackleton, David James Wilson, HenryJ.(York,W. R.)
Nicholson,CharlesN. (Doncast'r Shaw, Rt. Hon. T. (Hawick B.) Wilson, J. H (Middlesbrough)
Nolan, Joseph Shipman, Dr. John G. Wilson, P. W. (St. Pancras, S.)
Norton, Capt. Cecil William Simon, John Allsebrook Wilson, W. T. (Westhoughton)
Nussey, Thomas Willans Smeaton, Donald Mackenzie Woodhouse,SirJ.T.(Huddersf'd
Nuttall, Harry Smyth, Thomas F.(Leitrim,S.)
O' Brien, K. (Tipperary Mid) Snowden, P. TELLERS FOR THE NOES—Mr.
O'Connor, James (Wicklow, W. Soares, Ernest J. Whiteley and Mr. J. A.
O'Connor, John (Kildare, N.) Spicer, Sir Albert Pease
O'Donnell, T. (Kerry, W.) Stanger, H. Y.

moved to insert in line 10, after the word "actionable"the words "unless damage had been caused or."the object of Ins Amendment was to endeavour to safeguard the trade of the country, because if this clause would permit damage to be caused to the trade of the country it would be a very serious thing at the present time. We were in very keen competition with foreign countries, and he did think it would be a very serious thing if, because some provision of this sort was not put in, the trade of the country was to be injured. There were several reasons in the Report of the Royal Commission why something to this effect should be introduced. He admitted Lord Lindley signed the minority Report, but he remembered on very many occasions being in a minority in the House, and he was not at all sure that a Report, because it was a minority Report, was not to be received, sometimes, with great consideration—


Order, order ! The hon. Member must please speak to his Amendment.


said he wished to put in words to limit what might be done to actions which should not cause damage. The Attorney-General's argument was that this clause was not likely to cause any damage, because it only emphasised the law as it regarded one man, and that therefore damage could not ensue; but he was endeavouring to point out that unless "damage" was inserted a great deal of harm would result.


The hon. Member must really limit himself to his Amendment.


said he was endeavouring to prove that it would be possible unless these words were inserted to have damage caused which would be a very serious thing to the country, because a large combination of men could cause damage which could not be done by one person. It was very evident that a body of men might do a great deal perhaps in the heat of the moment which, they would not do in their calmer moments. They might do all sorts of violence and prevent people carrying on their business, and so cause them a great amount of damage. It was evident if a large number of people collected outside a man's dwelling, they could cause him considerable damage, whereas, if there was only one man, he would cause no damage. Under these circumstances, he hoped the Committee would accept the Amendment. He could not see that it was in any way likely to injure the desires of trade unions, because it did not prevent them taking any action unless by so doing they caused damage. He did not suppose it was their desire to cause damage to anyone in this country.

Amendment proposed— In page 1, line 10, after the word ' actionable,' to insert the words 'unless damage has been caused or.' "—(Sir Frederick Banbury.)

Question proposed, "That those words be there inserted."


thought the hon. Baronet was under a little misapprehension with regard to the clause. There must be damage to constitute a cause of action. They must show some damage in order to prosecute.


said he should like to emphasise what the "clause was doing. They were going to lay down by the legal declaration of the House that damage might be lawfully caused by combination, and there was to be no remedy. That was what the House meant to lay down, and he thought it was well that the Committee and country should understand it. They were going to give immunity, although a conspiracy had been entered into, and although damage in pursuance of that had arisen.


said he rose for two purposes: first of all to support, as far as he was able, the Amendment, and, secondly, for the more important purpose of making one personal explanation. During the speech which he had made earlier in the evening with regard to this Bill he had been betrayed into using an expression which was, now that he had come to look at it, obviously improper. He believed it was referred to during his absence, and he desired to say he did not in the least intend to make the reflection which that expression would suggest. He thought the reflection was totally unwarranted, totally unnecessary and untrue, and, in so far as the expression conveyed those impressions, he desired unreservedly to withdraw it. With regard to the Amendment before the Committee, he recognised that it was impossible to expect the learned Attorney-General to accept it. The Amendment went to the root of the clause, and, if it were accepted, would make the clause meaningless. He could not bring himself to agree to a proposal which undoubtedly would lead to real damage without there being any remedy, and upon that broad and general ground if his hon. friend went to a division he should support him.

MR. SHACKLETON (Lancashire, Clitheroe)

said on behalf of himself and his friends that they accepted the withdrawal the hon. Member had made of his previous statement.

Question put, and negatived.


moved "To leave out the words 'actionable as a tort,' in line 12, and to insert in their place the words ' a criminal offence'." He thought his hon. friends opposite and on that side of the House would agree with him that there had been no action more fruitful of disaster to trade unions I than those actions which had been founded upon molestation, coercion, or intimidation. His hon. friends opposite would also agree with him that the words "molestation, coercion, and intimidation" were words of a singularly ambiguous character. He need only say that his experience of trade union cases satisfied him that in the vast majority of them adverse verdicts had been founded and successfully maintained on the basis of the legal meaning of the words "Intimidation and coercion," and he might add to that observation that trade unions and trade unionists suffered no greater hardship under the existing law than the hardship suffered under the law relating to intimidation and coercion. The result of his amendment would be to relieve trade unions entirely from the legal consequences of intimidation of the character already indicated and which had hitherto been successfully enforced against them. He proposed to limit the responsibility of members of trade unions in respect of intimidation to intimidation when that intimidation was only of a criminal character. Hon. Members would understand that the words "only of a criminal character" meant when there was a threat of personal violence—violence to person or property. Trade unions were contented to be liable for any intimidation which partook of a criminal character and that was the object of his Amendment. The clause, as it at present stood, was absolutely useless. He said that with a full sense of his responsibility as a lawyer. It afforded no protection whatever to trade unions. The clause as it stood was that the conspiracy to do an act should not be actionable unless that act was actionable when committed without conspiracy. That was the proposal put into plain English. Molestation, intimidation, and coercion of the kind he bad indicated was an actionable wrong, whether it was the result of a conspiracy or the act of one man without conspiracy or conbination with others, and he ventured with great respect to point out to those responsible for the Bill that a civil action for conspiracy would only lie in respect to unlawful acts; that was to say, unlawful means to follow out a lawful object or lawful means to follow out an unlawful object. He wished to point out to hon. Members opposite that if they amended the clause in the direction he suggested, they got rid of the most dangerous weapon used against trade unions. It was perfectly true that the value of the clause would be much impaired, because, of course, if the new Clause 4 were passed employers of labour were hardly likely to bring an action against trade unionists, either officials or members, because they were not likely to get damages. For his part he said although the value of the clause would be much impaired by the new clause, which rendered trade unions immune, still at the same time there were the officials and members of unions liable to be shot at. He proposed that if it was a criminal act it ought to be actionable. The Attorney-General might say, "But why draw this distinction between crime and tort?" His reason for that was this. They were wise to provide exceptional legislation for trade unions, because having regard to the nature of the operations they had to conduct, they and their members were exceptionally exposed to the danger of transgressing a law so ambiguous and elastic as that which related to conspiracy, associated with "Intimidation" "coercion," and "molestation." He urged upon hon. Members the vital importance of insisting upon relieving the trade unions from what he could not help describing as the most disastrous effect of the present law with regard to actions of this character. Trade unions had suffered more from that law than anything else. It was a judge-made law. It was a law which had grown up in the old days when penal measures were ruthlessly enforced.

Amendment proposed— In page 1, line 12, to leave out the words ' actionable as a tort,' and to insert the words 'a criminal offenee."'—(Mr. Atherley-Jones.)

Question proposed, "That the word ' actionable ' stand part of the clause."


said he understood that his hon. and learned friend desired that civil action should not lie in regard to what he characterised as coercion, intimidation, or molestation.


Unless it is criminal.


said he understood that was his great object. Were the terms he had used terms of law or of rhetoric? An action at tort which was classified as coercion or intimidation or molestation.


said in the first place the word "Intimidation" was enshrined in an Act of Parliament, and in the second place the word "Intimidation" had a clear and definite meaning in law.


said he was bound to acknowledge the truth of his hon. and learned friend's remark that these words were enshrined in a Statute. That made them a crime, and therefore so far from relieving the trades unions from this class of action the only result would be that they would have to find what was meant by these words "intimidation," "coercion," and "molestation." and they would discover it in the Act of 1875. If they looked at that Act they would fee that defined the acts of coercion, intimidation, and molestation: The marginal note of that classification was in these terms— Penalty for intimidation or annoyance by violence or otherwise. Therefore they had a class of acts which were catalogued as crimes, and therefore the Amendment of his hon. friend would not accomplish the object he had in view. All the acts enumerated in Clause 7 of the Act of 1875 were crimes, and therefore for any of those acts an action could be brought such as: (1) Uses violence to or intimidates such other person or his wife or children, or injures his property; or (2) Persistently follows such other person about from place to place; or (3) Hides any tools, clothes, or other property owned or used by such other person, or deprives him of or hinders him in the use thereof; or (4) Watches or besets the house or other place where such other person resides, or works, or carries on business or happens to be, or the approach to such house or place; or (5) Follows such other person with two or more other persons in a disorderly manner in or through any street or road. All those acts were crimes, and therefore the Amendment would not prevent an action being brought in respect of them.


said the Amendment would produce the absurd result that an act which was wrong if done by one man would not be wrong if done by a hundred men.

Amendment negatived.


moved an Amendment to insert at end of line 12;" Provided always that nothing in this section shall prevent an action being brought in respect of an act done in pursuance of a malicious intention to injure another person."the object was to leave a remedy for any person who could prove he had been damaged by an act as the result of an agreement among two or more persons in respect of a trade dispute, which was done in pursuance of a really malicious intention to injure. He did not know that there was any better way of laying before the Committee what the intention and the effect of this Amendment would be, as he understood it, than to detail the kind of acts which he had in his mind. Among the many cases there was the case, he believed a well known one, of Carr against the Amalgamated Society of Painters. In that case what happened was extremely simple. A certain painter he believed, in Manchester, employed a foreman, and that foreman for one reason or another persistently refused to join the local trade union. The executive committee of the union by a resolution gave authority to call out the men who were working with that foreman in the employ of the painter in order that they should not work with a non-union man. In pursuance of this agreement, conspiracy, or whatever they chose to call it, the men were thereupon called cut, and did in fact leave their work. The painter, left with his foreman, tried thereafter to get contracts of various kinds for painting, and the contractors to whom this painter applied were approached by officers of the trade union in question, and informed that if they gave any contract to Mr. Carr their men would all be called out as a protest, and the effect of that was that the painter lost not only one particular contract but many contracts, and he sustained obviously great loss. It was found by the Jury in that case that the officials of the trade union did maliciously and in order to injure the plaintiff, conspire to obstruct, and did, in fact, obstruct, the plaintiff in carrying on his trade as a painter. That was a case of a real malicious intention—he used the word in the legal sense—to injure this particular person. The only object of this Amendment was to elicit a statement from the Government so that they might know exactly what their intentions were as regarded the effect of this clause upon acts of that kind. Of course, if the Government said they meant such acts should be really left without remedy, and if in contemplation or in furtherance of a trade dispute any number of persons might combine to do malicious damage without any remedy, then he supposed the matter must be left there, but he could not believe that the Attorney-General desired that. He did not believe that hon. Gentlemen below the gangway regarded that as a necessary part of the activities of real trade unionism, and he thought if there were any objection to his amendment it was an objection that this was an attempt to define things that were to be done and things that were not to be done, and that as this was unusual legislation for a particular set of circumstances, while resulting in good upon the one hand, it might result in hardship on the other. The question was a, short one; it was whether the Government,desired, whether hon. Gentlemen below the gangway desired that malicious acts done in pursuance of a malicious intention to injure a person should be left entirely without remedy, and it was with a view to getting an answer to that question that he begged leave to move the Amendment standing in his name.

Amendment proposed. In page 1, line 12, at end, to insert the words ' provided always that nothing in this section shall prevent an action being brought in respect of an act done, in pursuance of a malicious intention to injure another person.'' (Mr. Bowles.)

Question proposed, '' That those words be there inserted."


hoped the hon. Member would not proceed with this Amendment. It was quite impossible to impose the test which the hon. Member proposed.

Question put, and negatived.

Motion made, and Question proposed, "That Clause 1 stand part of the Bill.


said that, owing to an unfortunate accident, he was not in the House to move the Amendment standing in his name to leave out the words "as a tort." He could not move it now, but he could object to the passing of the clause in order to ask the Attorney-General what was the meaning of the words at the end. The clause ran in this way— An act done in pursuance of an agreement or combination by two or more persons shall, if done in contemplation or furtherance of a trade dispute, not be actionable unless the act, if done without any such agreement or combination, would be actionable as a tort. He asked the Committee to conceive quite a common case—an agreement among certain people that they would all on a certain day break their contracts. That would be an agreement between two or more persons, and if in consequence of the agreement they did break their contracts, that would be an act done in pursuance of an agreement, and it would not be actionable. It would be merely an agreement among certain people to break their contracts. It would not be an actionable tort. He knew that the Attorney-General would correct him if he was wrong. In an action for a tort one must either pursue a man for breaking his contract or for a wrong suffered independently of contract. That was the whole theory of civil litigation. What this clause said was that an. act done in pursuance of an agreement was not to be actionable unless the act, if done without any such agreement, would be actionable as a tort. He dared say that the hon.and learned Gentleman had a simple and easy explanation of the words of the clause. It seemed to him clearly wrong, and that it should stop at the word "actionable." It was just possible that they arose from too slavishly following the words in Section 3 of the Conspiracy and Protection of Property Act of 1875. He could not conceive what was the meaning of the words "as a tort," and he ventured to ask the Attorney-General whether he would introduce something in the clause to make the meaning clear.


said the noble Lord misapprehended the intention of the Bill. It did not contemplate an action for conspiracy being brought against three or more workmen who might break their contracts. The clause meant that an action for conspiracy should not lie where there was a simultaneous breach of contract on the part of a number of men. Where there was a breach of contract on the part of men in contemplation or in the course of a trade dispute, there was invariably a simultaneous act; and if labour acted together and in the course of acting together there was a breach of the contract of service,there were all the elements of an action for conspiracy at common law. There was a combination to break a contract, and therefore undoubtedly an action for conspiracy would lie. The object of the clause was not to allow such an action to be brought, because, in the view of the Government,it would be oppressive. They did not free men from responsibility, who, in the course of a trade dispute, left their work without serving out the whole time of their notice. They remained responsible under their contracts and their ordinary liabilities were not removed. What the Government said was that it was not their policy as part of legislation of this class to make these men as a body subject to an action for conspiracy where the act committed was not tortieous per se. Let the Committee suppose that an employer introduced a body of 200 or 300 under contract for three or six months. Let them suppose these men were engaged in Holland, Belgium, Germany, or elsewhere. They could not leave their work for the period of their engagement without a breach of contract. What was the position of these men? They found out possibly that they had been engaged under misrepresentations. They found out that they had been given a fallacious view of the dispute which had taken place in this country. They found out after experience that in their view the con- ditions of employment were intolerable and they declined to go on because they felt that they ought not to go on. If they did not go on they would be liable for actions for breach of contract and the employers had all those remedies in their hands, and all that was said here was that they should not under those circumstances subject these men to an action for conspiracy in addition to their liability to pay damages for breach of contract. In his view the liability to pay damages was quite sufficient sanction to enforce those contracts. He thought for those reasons the words "as a tort," not having been included without due consideration, should stand.

MR. RAWLINSON (Cambridge University)

said he did not wish to intervene in the merits of the dispute, but he ventured to submit to the Attorney-General that he had absolutely misapprehended his hon. friend's point on this matter. The Attorney-General had said that he had no intention of taking away from an employer his right of action against a single employee. But this section went far farther than that. Might he give a concrete instance of what he meant? Assuming there was a trade dispute and assuming that there was a contract that an employer should supply a large quantity of iron, of flour, or provisions, or anything of that sort, anyone could break that contract in pursuance of that dispute; and so carelessly was this section drawn that no action could be brought against any of them. He was not dealing with the merits of the case, but with the slovenly drafting of the section. If the Attorney-General would read the section again he would see what was meant. There was no question of an action for conspiracy at all. It was simply this. This section was drawn in such a way that what it said was that any act done in pursuance of an agreement by two or more persons should, if done in furtherance of a trade dispute, not be actionable unless the act if done without any such agreement or combination would be actionable as a tort. Therefore if it was simply actionable as a contract they could bring no action as a tort. Under that section the employer had no remedy against a single servant who broke his contract after three months employment. Supposing there were three people under contract to deliver flour and those three people did not deliver the flour because they had agreed to break their contracts to deliver it. The section said an act if done in contemplation of a trade dispute would not be actionable unless the act so done would be actionable as a tort. That would not be actionable here as a tort but as a contract. It was merely a question, of drafting. This section as it stood would prevent a person bringing an action for breach of contract against those millers who declined to deliver flour. He was not convinced that the omission of the words "as a tort" would be the best means of carrying out the intention of the Committee, and he suggested that the clause required redrafting in order to carry out what he gathered to be the full intention of the Committee in this matter.


said two reasons had been advanced for this clause. The first was that the law had been altered by the decisions in the Taff Vale case and in the case of Quinn v. Leathern. Those decisions were not in contemplation when the Act was passed in 1875 and therefore, as the law required a new interpretation, it must be amended. The next reason was that there really was not much in it. The reason given by the Attorney-General was because an action which was done by a number of people would still be liable to civil or criminal prosecution it was illegal if done by one person. In regard to the next point that this clause was necessary in order to alter a misconception in the Act of 1875, he pointed out that three Commissioners in the Report did not take that view. They said they were satisfied that the law laid down by the House of Lords involved no new principle and was not inconsistent with the legislation of 1871. It was indeed true, they proceeded, that that statute did not declare nor had any other statute declared that trade unions should be liable to an action in tort, and before the Taff Vale case there was not on record any case in which, the question of the liability of a trade union was distinctly raised and in which, a Court of Law pronounced a trade union liable. But this did not prove the trade unions as such possessed any special exemption from actions of tort. On the contrary it could not be disputed, the Commissioners pointed out, that theoretically the funds of trade unions had all along through their members been subject to the general law of liability. The Commissioners went on to say that— An action to recover damages in respect of a tort could be instituted only in the Courts of Common Law, and those Courts, although they did not allow the non-joinder of defendants to be pleaded in such an action either in bar or in abatement, adopted a rigid rule that judgment could not be recovered against any person or persons not named as defendants in the action. From this it followed that no property could be taken in execution which was not the property of the named defendants. If, therefore, an association consisted of so large a number of persons that it was impracticable to ascertain the names of all of them or to make them all defendants, the property of the association as distinguished from that of the individual members could not be taken in execution in a Common Law action. The same Commission had also stated that on the grounds of justice and equity the law as laid down in the Taff Vale case appeared insurmountable. That vast and powerful institutions ' they said— should be permanently licensed to apply the funds they possess to do wrong to others and by that wrong inflict upon them damage perhaps to the amount of many thousand pounds and yet not be liable to make redress out of those funds would be a state of things opposed tthe very idea of law and order and justice. Those words appeared to him to be extremely true. They were laid down by three Commissioners, and he had never heard in the course of the debate a single argument which would go to prove that the conclusion they then arrived at was wrong. With the single exception of an hon. Member below the gangway on the opposite side no Member of the Labour Party had got up and attempted to justify this clause. The justification which was used by the Attorney-General to the effect that the remedy would be that if the action done by one individual was illegal it would apply to this combination was dealt with by Sir William Lewis, who made some forcible quotations from some of the learned judges of the land. Sir William T. Lewis at page 130 of his minority Report quoted Lord Macnaghten who said— A man may resist with much difficulty the wrongful acts of an individual…but it is a very different thing when one man has to defend himself against many combined to do him wrong. Sir William Lewis also quoted Lord Lindley, who said— My Lords, it is said that the conduct which is not actionable on the part of one person cannot be actionable if it is that of several acting in concert. This may be so where many do no more than one is supposed to do. But numbers may annoy and coerce where one may not. Annoyance and coercion by many may be so intolerable as to become actionable and produce a result which one alone could not produce. But there are many ways short of violence, or the threat of it, of compelling persons to act in a way which they do not like. He thought that under this clause the damage that would result, not only to trade unions, but to employers and those possessed of capital must recoil upon the workmen. That damage would, in his judgment, be irretrievable. It would put power into the hands of people, honestly actuated no doubt by motives which were wrong and of which they did not perceive the effect, who ought not to be entrusted with it. It would allow them to do illegal acts from which misery and suffering would flow to other persons. He thought he had shown that, according, to the opinion of three of the Commissioners who were gentlemen of great ability and impartiality, there was an error in saying or believing that the decision in the Taff Vale case or in the case of Quinn v. Leathern was not absolutely right. They had shown that that was the law although people might not have generally known that it was the law. He had quoted opinions which showed that this clause could not be rendered harmless because the tort of one person was shared by many. He had shown that that was an illusion. He had shown that the clause gave the power to persons to combine for a perfectly illegitimate purpose for

the doing of which they should be prosecuted, and that if the clause were agreed to great injury would be cast upon the trade and industries of this country. The trade and industry of this country were not in too good a state now.


pointed out that the hon. Member must not make a Second Reading speech in Committee.


said he was only talking about the right of people to combine for an illegitimate purpose. If he was making a Second Reading speech he should be entitled to refer to any other clause of the Bill that he wished. He ventured to affirm that there was not a single Member present who would get up and prove, that what he said was wrong.


said he had listened to this debate with great attention, and he thought the question raised by his noble friend was an absolutely sound one. If the intentions of the Government a; he understood them were put into force, it would still be possible for 500 or 600 miners in a particular colliery to leave their work without warning, with the result that if the colliery became flooded, and £10,000 worth of damage was done, the colliery owner would have no effective remedy. Surely it would be a farce to suggest to him that his remedy was to sue separately 500 or 600 colliers for breach of contract.

Question put.

The Committee divided—Ayes, 313; Noes, 33. (Division List No. 282.)

Boulton, A. C. F. (Ramsey) Fullerton, Hugh M'Laren,Sir C. B. (Leicester)
Brace, William Gibb, James (Harrow) M'Laren, H. D.(Stafford, W.)
Bramsdon, T. A. Gill, A. H. M'Micking, Major G.
Brigg, John Ginnell, L. Maddison, Frederick
Bright, J. A. Gladstone,Rt.Hn. HerbertJohn Mallet, Charles E.
Brocklehurst, W. B. Glover, Thomas Manfield, Harry (Northants)
Brodie, H. C. Goddard, Daniel Ford Marks,G.Croydon(Launceston
Brooke, Stopford Gooch, George Peabody Marnham, F. J.
Brunner,J.F. L.(Lancs., Leigh Grant, Corrie Mason, A. E. W. (Coventry)
Brunner, Sir John T. (Cheshire) Greenwood, G. (Peterborough) Massie, J.
Bryce,J. A. (Inverness Burghs) Gulland, John W. Masterman, C. F. G.
Buckmaster, Stanley O. Hall, Frederick Meagher, Michael
Burns, Rt. Hon. John Halpin, J. Meehan, Patrick A.
Burt, Rt. Hon. Thomas Hammond, John Micklem, Nathaniel
Buxton, Rt.Hn.SydneyCharles Harcourt, Rt. Hon. Lewis Mond, A.
Byles, William Pollard Hardie, J.Keir(Merthyr Tydvil) Montagu, E. S.
Cairns, Thomas Hardy, George A. (Suffolk) Montgomery, H. G.
Cameron, Robert Hardy, Laurence(Kent,Ashford Mooney, J. J.
Carr-Gomm, H. W. Haimsworth, Cecil B.(Worc'r) Morgan, G. Hay (Cornwall)
Chance, Frederick William Harrington, Timothy Morgan, J.Lloyd(Carmarthen)
Cheetham, John Frederick Hart-Davies, T. Morse, L. L.
Cherry, Rt. Hon. R. R. Harvey, A. G. C.(Rochdale) Morton, Alpheus Cleophas
Clancy, John Joseph Haslam, James (Derbyshire) Murnagban, George
Clarke, C. Goddard Haworth, Arthur A. Murphy, John
Cleland, J. W. Hazel, Dr. A. E. Murray, James
Clough, W. Hazleton, Richard Myer, Horatio
Clynes, J. R. Hedges, A. Paget Nicholson,CharlesN.(Doncast'r
Coats, Sir T. Glen (Renfrew,W.) Henderson, Arthur (Durham) Nolan, Joseph
Cobbold, Felix Thornley Henry, Charles S. Norman, Henry
Cogan, Denis J. Higham, John Sharp Norton, Capt. Cecil William
Collins, Stephen (Lambeth) Hills, J. W. Nussey, Thomas Willans
Collins,SirWm.J.(S.Pancras,W. Hobhouse, Charles E. H. Nuttall, Harry
Cooper, G. J. Hodge, John O'Brien,Kendal(Tipperary Mid
Corbett,A. Cameron (Glasgow) Hogan, Michael O'Connor,James(Wicklow, W.)
Corbett,C.H.(Sussex,E.Grinst'd Holden, E. Hopkinson O'Connor, John (Kildare, N.)
Cornwall, Sir Edwin A. Horniman, Emslie John O'Donnell, C. J. (Walworth)
Cotton, Sir H. J. S. Hudson, Walter O'Donnell, T. (Kerry, W.)
Cowan. W. H. Hutton, Alfred Eddison O'Dowd, John
Cox, Harold Hyde, Clarendon O'Grady J.
Crean, Eugene Illingworth, Percy H. O'Hare, Patrick
Cremer, William Randal Isaacs, Rufus Daniel O'Malley, William
Crooks, William Jackson, R. S. O'Mara, James
Crosfield, A. H. Jacoby, James Alfred O'Shaughnessy, P.
Cullinan, J. Jardine, Sir J. Parker, James (Halifax)
Dalziel, James Henry Jenkins, J. Partington, Oswald
Davies, Timothy (Fulham) Johnson, John (Gateshead) Paul, Herbert
Delany, William Johnson, W. (Nuneaton) Paulton, James Mellor
Dewar, Arthur (Edinburgh, S.) Jones, SirD.Brynmor(Swansea) Pearce, Robert (Staffs. Leek)
Dickinson,W.H.(St.Pancras,N. Jones, Leif (Appleby) Philipps,Col. Ivor (S'thampton)
Dilke, Rt. Hon. Sir Charles Jones,William (Carnarvonshire Philipps, Owen C. (Pembroke)
Dobson, Thomas W. Jowett, F. W. Pickersgill, Edward Hare
Dolan, Charles Joseph Joyce, Michael Pirie, Duncan V.
Duckworth, James Kearley, Hudson E. Pollard, Dr.
Duncan,C.(Barrow-in-Furness) Kekewich, Sir George Powell, Sir Francis Sharp
Duncan, J. H. (York, Otley) Kelley, George D. Power, Patrick Joseph
Dunn, A. Edward (Camborne) Kennedy, Vincent Paid Price, C.E.(Edinb'gh,Central)
Dunne, MajorE.Martin(Walsall King, Alfred John (Knutsford) Radford, G. H.
Edwards, Clement (Denbigh) Laidlaw, Robert Raphael, Herbert H.
Edwards, Enoch (Hanley) Lambert, George Rea, Russell (Gloucester)
Edwards, Frank (Radnor) Lamont, Norman Reddy, M.
Elibank, Master of Layland-Barratt, Francis Redmond, William (Clare)
Esmonde, Sir Thomas Lover, A.Levy(Essex,Harwich Richards, T.F.(Wolverh'mpt'n
Essex, R. W. Levy, Maurice Richardson, A.
Eve, Harry Trelawney Lewis, John Herbert Rickett, J. Compton
Farrell, James Patrick Lloyd-George, Rt. Hon. David Roberts, Chas. H. (Lincoln)
Fenwick, Charles Lough, Thomas Roberts, G. H. (Norwich)
Ferens, T. E. Lundon, W. Robertson, Sir G.Scott(Bradf'd
Ffrench, Peter Macdonald, J. R. (Leicester) Robertson, J. M. (Tyneside)
Findlay, Alexander Macdonald,J.M.(FalkirkB'ghs Robson, Sir William Snowdon
Flavin, Michael Joseph Maclean, Donald Rogers, F. E. Newman
Flynn, James Christopher MacVeagh, Jeremiah (Down, S. Rose, Charles Day
Freeman-Thomas, Freeman MacVeigh,Charles(Donegal,F. Rowlands, J.
Fuller, John Michael F. M'Callum, John M. Runciman, Walter
Russell, T. W. Stewart, Halley (Greenock) Ward,WDudley(Southampton
Rutherford, V. H.(Brentford) Strachey, Sir Edward Wardle, George J.
Schwann, C. Duncan (Hyde) Strauss, E. A. (Abingdon) Warner, Thomas Courtenay T.
Schwann,SirC.E.(Manchester) Stuart, James (Sunderland) Wason,JohnCathcart(Orkney)
Scott,A.H.(AshtonunderLyne Sullivan, Donal Waterlow, D. S.
Soars, J. E. Summerbell, T. Watt, H. Anderson
Seaverns, J. H. Sutherland, J. E. White, J. D. (Dunbartonshire)
Seddon, J. Taylor, John W. (Durham) White, Luke (York, E.R.)
Seely, Major J. B. Thomas,Sir A. (Glamorgan,E.) White, Patrick (Meath, North)
Shackleton, David James Thomasson, Franklin Whitehead, Rowland
Shaw, Rt. Hon. T.(Hawick,B.) Thorne, William Whitley, J. H. (Halifax)
Sheehan, Daniel Daniel Toulmin, George Wiles, Thomas
Shipman, Dr. John G. Turnour, Viscount Wilkie, Alexander
Simon, John Allsebrook Ure, Alexander Wills, Arthur Walters
Smeaton, Donald Mackenzie Verney, F. W. Wilson, Henry J.(York, W.R.)
Smyth,Thomas F. (Leitrim, S.) Vivian, Henry Wilson, J. H, (Middlesbrough)
Snowden, P. Walker, H. De R. (Leicester) Wilson, W. T. (Westhoughton)
Soares, Ernest J. Wallace, Robert Woodhouse,SirJ.T(Huddersf'd
Spicer, Sir Albert Walsh, Stephen
Stanger, H. Y. Walton, Sir John L. (Leeds, S.) TELLERS FOR THE AYES
Stanley, Hn.A.Lyulph(Chesh.) Walton, Joseph (Barnsley) Mr. Whiteley and Mr. J. A.
Steadman, W. O. Ward,John (Stoke upon Trent) Pease.
Balcarres, Lord Douglas, Rt. Hon. A. Akers- Pease,Herbert Pike (Darlington
Baring, Hon. Guy(Winchester Fell, Arthur Roberts, S. (Sheffield,Ecclesall)
Barrie, H. T. (Londonderry,N.) Finch, Rt. Hon. George H. Salter, Arthur Clavell
Beach, Hn. Michael Hugh Hicks Forster, Henry William Smith,F. E. (Liverpool,Walton
Bowles, G. Stewart Hamilton, Marquess of Valentia, Viscount
Bridgeman, W. Clive Hervey,F.W.F. (BuryS.Edm'ds Williams, Col. R. (Dorset, W.)
Carson, Rt. Hon. Sir Edw. H. Hill, Sir Clement (Shrewsbury) Wortley, Rt. Hon. C. B. Stuart-
Castlereagh, Viscount Hunt, Rowland
Cavendish,Rt. Hn. Victor C.W. Law,Andrew Bonar (Dulwich) TELLERS FOR THE NOES—Sir
Cecil, Evelyn (Aston Manor) Lyttelton, Rt. Hon. Alfred Frederick Banbury and Mr.
Cecil, Lord John P. Joicey- Mason, James F. (Windsor) Rawlinson.
Cecil, Lord R. (Marylebone, E.) Nicholson, Wm. G. (Petersfield)
Craig, Chas.Curtis (Antrim, S.) Parkes, Ebenezer

said he rose to move the Amendment which stood in his name to insert "not exceeding three" after the word "persons."the clause would then read— It shall be lawful for one or more persons, not exceeding three, acting on their own behalf or on behalf of a trade union in contemplation or furtherance of a trade dispute, to attend, peaceably and in a reasonable manner, at or near a house or place where a person resides or works or carries on business or happens to be, if they so attend merely for the purpose of obtaining or communicating information, or of persuading any person to work or abstain from working. The effect of that Amendment was sufficiently clear on general grounds as it stood, but he hoped the Committee would allow him to suggest shortly one or two considerations which did not appear upon the surface, but which ought to influence the Committee in considering whether this Amendment should be adopted. Hon. Members were no doubt well aware that by Section 7 of the Act of 1875 it was already possible for any number of persons acting on their own behalf or on behalf of a trade union during a trade dispute to attend at the various places mentioned in the clause if they did so for the purpose of obtaining or communicating information. But it was not legal so to attend in order to persuade anybody to work or not to work whether peaceably or not. The purpose of this clause was to allow peaceable persuasion in that way. Now the Committee would perceive that this procedure which was to be legalised was to take place, in the words of the clause itself, "peaceably and in a reasonable manner," and he submitted this Amendment to the Committee on the sole ground that it or something like it was absolutely necessary, as a matter of fact, in order that there should be some security, at any rate, by the insertion of a provision in this clause which would make it operate in a "peaceable and reasonable manner." What were these persons to do? They were to obtain and communicate information and they were to peaceably persuade persons to work or to abtsain from working. What earthly reason could there be for a large crowd if these things were to be done in a peaceable and reasonable manner? What was the need of great numbers of persons? Was it to be asserted that two or three men of the highest intelligence, because they were the men who would be chosen, were incapable of obtaining or imparting information in connection with a trade dispute? Could it be really suggested that three persons were an insufficient number to persuade a man either to abstain from working or to work so long as that persuasion wasreally to be peaceable? He did not believe that any hon. Member would suggest that three persons were not amply sufficient for either of these things. He had endeavoured, but was unable to be convinced by the arguments that would probably be used against him. In the first place it would be said that if the number of men who were to be allowed to picket was limited, they would get into, the difficulty of whether these men were to be allowed to attend in many places at the same time. [Laughter.] Hon. Gentlemen laughed, but what he said was distinctly what he meant; whether these groups of two or three persons were or were not to be allowed to attend at more than one place at the same moment. Whether they were to have groups of two or three in many places at one time, or whether there were to be confined to one place. That was said to be one objection, but there was really nothing in that argument. If the intention of this clause was that these two or three persons might not go alone to one place, but that they might go to a man's house or any where else that he happened to be at; that if they could not find him at one moment they might have every security of being able to find him the next; then there was no limit to what they might do. The only object of limiting the number of persons to two or three was to ensure that what was really meant should be carried out, and that this clause should not be a tolerable pretence, and that such information as was imparted might be imparted in a really peaceable and reasonable manner. Then again it was said or might be said that this Amendment was not necessary because any proceeding which was not peaceable or reasonable was already dealt with by the law. He earnestly wish that he could take that view. He did not believe any hon. Gentleman on either side of the House would uphold the kind of thing which was, as a matter of fact, done—there was nobody in the House who would defend many things which, had been done in the past. Though he was sure that hon. Gentlemen below the gangway would do all they could to prevent such things being done, there was no security that such things would not be done again. Take an instance at random. There was a man in connection with the Taff Vale case, a man named Berry. He started for work on August 20th and he was met by four pickets. He was told not to go to work; that nobody else was at work; and that more pickets were waiting for him at the Rhymney Gate, and he was afraid and went home. He put it to the Committee, did any hon. Member assert that things should go on in this way? If they did he had nothing more to say, but if they did not let them take the only possible course and accept his Amendment or something of the kind. The truth was that if they allowed indeterminate numbers of men to attend at any place—at a man's house, or wherever he happened to be, at the entrance of works, or anywhere else, the mere fact that they did attend in considerable numbers was in itself unreasonable and likely to result, without any overt act, in intimidation. He himself would have been profoundly intimidated if he had been met by such pickets, and men would be intimidated if other men were given these large powers to be used on other men without the proper control which hon. Members below the gangway desired to exercise and who really desired that, in future, picketing should be carried out in a peaceable and reasonable manner. It was in those circumstances that he earnestly submitted that such an Amendment as he suggested was really necessary. He begged to move.

Amendment proposed— In page 1, line 13, after the word ' persons,' to insert the words ' not exceeding three."—(Mr. Bowles.)

Question proposed "That those words be inserted."


said the hon. Member had expressed what lie was sure was the desire of all. He was anxious that the right of picketing, which was exercised under this Bill, should not be exercised in such a way as to inspire terror in any class of workpeople, who might not agree with the strike. He had suggested that that object would be obtained by limiting the number in a way most likely to obtain it, and that some fixed figure mentioned in the Act would be the most effectual limit by which he could regulate the number of the picket. The answer to the hon. Member's argument seemed to be that any figure upon which the Committee might decide would be sure to be inapplicable to some conditions which might arise. Let them take his maximum figure of three. That figure certainly would be an excessive one if they were dealing with a very small works with a single entrance, in which case, one or certainly two men would be amply sufficient. On the other hand, if they were dealing with such works as Armstrongs, where several thousand men wore, employed, and where there were several entrances to the works, it would be impossible to limit the figure of the picket, and say they must not employ more than three. It was for that reason that instead of employing a figure the Government sought to find some expression which would restrict this right so that there should be no abuse, and they had put in the words "peaceable and reasonable." If the right was to be exercised in a peaceable and reasonable manner, a reasonable number of men had to be employed having regard to the particular case, and in that way the hon. Member's purpose was served in a better way than it would be by his proposal of three. He could not accept the Amendment


said he had come down with a fairly open mind on this question, having something like 100,000 trade unionists in his division. Therefore, he was not biassed in any way. Though he frankly admitted he was not very, familiar with the Bill, it did seem to him that this Amendment which had been moved by his hon. friend was entitled to some consideration and deliberation. A person approaching the Bill with an absolutely open mind would wonder why there was any objection to including this Amendment in it. The clause read thus: It shall be lawful for one or more persons, acting on their own behalf or on behalf of the trades union, in contemplation or furtherance of a trades dispute, to attend peaceably and in a reasonable manner at or near a house or place where a person resides or works or carries on business or happens to be, if they so attend merely for the purpose of obtaining or communicating information or of persuading any person to work or abstain from working. Approaching that with an open mind one would like to ask why, if the clause allowed persons to attend peaceably and in a reasonable manner, one or at most two should not be able to do that. There seemed to be no possible reason why more than that number should be allowed. It could not be maintained that eight or ten persons would be any more capable of communicating or imparting information or persuading any person to work or abstain from working than two, and that if more than two or three attended they were going to prevent by some force, which was expressly against the meaning of the clause. It appeared to him nothing short of monstrous for any Bill to be passed containing any clause which gave power to any number of persons to attend at a person's house for the purpose of annoying him in any possible way, and a considerable number of people attending the house would be an annoyance. If they were going to allow fifty persons to be employed for the purpose of picketing, the chance of injury being done to property and persons was infinitely greater than if they allowed only one or two to attend. He could not conceive in what way this Amendment was against the spirit or intention of the Bill. It seemed to him to be a most admirable Amendment, and if the hon. Member went to a division he should support him and in saying that he said he was representing the views of 98 per cent, of those in his constituency.


said that while it might be possible that picketing was in order until it became intimidation one could quite understand that, when 100 men were gathered round a man's house that that amounted to intimidation, and nothing less. The case which the Attorney-General took of Armstrongs' works was a very extreme case, but there were any number of cases in which men would be intimidated for all practical purposes by such a gathering. He could quite conceive a man who on leaving his house in the morning found it surrounded by a crowd of 100 persons being intimidated. As he understood, besetting and watching was not legal. Now would an action like that be besetting and watching? Because they had here a very narrow margin between peaceful persuasion and besetting and watching. As the Bill now stood any number of persons might attend whether they were connected or whether they were unconnected with the dispute, and they could attend on their own behalf or anybody else's behalf at the house where a person resided or at his place of business, whether he was in the house or at work or on his way to work. It seemed to be a very drastic provision that a man should be followed wherever he might go and that he might be followed for days and weeks and perhaps for months during the period of a strike. He put it to hon. Members if they were in the position of a man being watched in this way whether they would say it was a position that should be allowed. If that was the case it carried its own condemnation with it. It was only right to set some limitation on the number of men who should be allowed to watch any man and follow him about in this way. He thought the clause in this form was one of the strongest objections one could have to the Bill.


said that after listening to the Amendment and having given the best attention he could to the observations made upon it by the hon. and learned Attorney-General, he would say that if this clause had dealt and dealt only with the trade unions—if it was an exercise of these powers, though its defects were great, to carry out peaceful picketing at a man's place of business where he was to be subjected to the process known as "peaceful picketing," he should have been the first to recognise the weight of the argument of the learned Attorney - General, that if the place of buiness had as many as twenty or thirty places of entrance and as many exits, the Amendment of his hon. friend would be futile and inoperative. If that had been the fact then indeed he would say the fault was not that of the Amendment proposed, but of the looseness and the comprehensiveness of the clause for which the Government", had made themselves responsible. They had neither introduced nor proposed to introduce any words to make any distinction whatever between peaceful picketing at a place of business and the peaceful picketing of a place of residence which was in every conceivable sense objectionable. The clause for which the Government had made themselves responsible permitted a picket, the numbers of which were unlimited, not only to wait outside the numerous exits and entrances of a place of business, but also allowed any number of men bound on peaceful persuasion.


Any number of men would not be reasonable.


said he would like to test that problem a little further. He did not quite appreciate it. The proposition was, as he understood it, that a number of men were desirous of working and that a number of other men were desirous that they should not be permitted to work. He submitted that ten men might be a reasonable number of men peacefully to persuade men who were desirous of working to abstain from working—a hundred men would not be a reasonable number. What they wanted in this case was not a statement made in debate which they could not bring before a jury. What they wanted was some legislative signification, some legislative guarantee introduced into the Bill that this should not be made a brutal violation of the elementary rights of those who claimed—and, in the judgment of the Opposition rightly claimed—to be able to sell their labour in the best market they could find in this country. When he said that this clause as introduced and supported by the Government was a brutal violation of that claim, he was not confining himself to the, a priori argument. There was the evidence which Was given before the Commission—a Commission the constitution of which had not been, and could not be, impeached in this Home. He knew perfectly well the gravamen of the objection advanced below the Gangway. It was that no Labour Member sat on that Commission.


said the hon. and learned Gentleman would not be entitled to go into that question.


said the argument he was attempting to develop was that some numerical qualification was necessary to the right of peaceful picketing, and he was about to support that contention by arguments from evidence. That evidence had never been challeneged, and it illustrated the beautiful process of "peaceful" persuasion that would be applied under the provisions of this clause if there was no such limitation. An instance was afforded in the case of the strike at Aberamen on 2nd July, 1904, reported on page 125 of the Minutes of Evidence before the Royal Commission.


asked the hon. Member how he connected his quotations with the Amendment.


said the quotations went to show that in fact "peaceful picketing" was pursued by a larger number of men than the limit proposed. According to the South Wales Daily News of 10th August 1904— A non-union man was turned out of his lodgings and was followed by a good-humoured crowd as far as Ferndale just in time to meet the men there going home from work, and upon the non-unionist being recognised, the chase was taken up by the Ferndale men. The non-unionist, however, made good his escape.


rose to order. This was not a case of picketing.


ruled that the quotation was not irrelevant.


said that although he fully understood the objection of the hon. Gentleman below the Gangway to hear the evidence that was called before the Commission, he proposed to remind him of it in even greater detail so long as he kept within the ruling of the Chair. The next case was the Thames Steam Company strike in 1900. The evidence in that case would commend itself to those who still believed in the possibility of peaceful persuasion when exercised by large numbers of persons at the expense of small numbers of persons. He understood from the position that was taken up below the gangway that it was suggested that if authorised members of a trade union approached a man and reasoned with him on the basis that he was a blackleg, that was peaceful picketing. In the case he was quoting a man who desired to continue his work was met by members of the union at a public-house at Shadwell and called a "blackleg."


suggested that the case to which the hon. and learned Gentleman was referring had nothing to do with the question of picketing. It was a mere pothouse squabble.

MR. STUART WORTLEY (Sheffield, Hallam)

asked whether it was not relevant to the words "at or near a house where a person resides or works or carries on business or happens to be?"


said he did not think he could rule the hon. and learned Gentleman's remarks out of order


ventured to think that the words where a man "happens to be" which the Government had introduced into their Bill, in the imperfect state of modern society, were not unlikely to mean a public-house. He could give evidence to that effect if necessary if any of the cases he had quoted were challenged by hon. Members below the Gangway. The effect of the evidence referred to was that wherever there had been a strong attempt on behalf of trade unionists to prevent non-union men working, this form of picketing had been a form, of persuasion which had natuarally led to violence, and therefore he thought it would be extremely unwise of this Committee to allow men in future to exercise their powers of persuasion in that way. It was not merely as if the proposal were confined to the place of business in which the man affected was working. If that wore so there might be a great deal to be said for it, but it was a numerical limitation. No one familiar with the working classes of this country would refuse to accept this general proposition that they were not giving a man a fair chance of exercising an independent judgment as to whether he would work or not at a particular place when they entitled a crowd of men numbering between 100 and 150 to proceed to violence when their object had not been immediately satisfied. No member of this House would say that they were taking a step in the direction of individual choice or the freedom of judgment of the working men of this country as to the market in which they should sell their labour by authorising by law men, whose interests were not necessarily the interests of the whole of the working classes and whose only object was to force as many men as they could into the ranks of organised labour as contrasted with unorganised labour to indulge in, violence of this kind. This clause would allow a crowd of men to go not only to a workman's place of business but to his house, where his wife and children were, in order to induce him by acts of this kind to cease working at the place where he was earning his livelihood. During the Second Reading of the Bill introduced by an hon. Member below the gangway it was stated that trades unionists had not enough men to go in such large numbers in order to enforce peaceful persuasion. The hon. Member said they would only have perhaps two or three or four or five men for this purpose, and ridiculed the assumption that they might have 100 men at their disposal to attempt to enforce peaceful persuasion. The evidence given before the Royal Commission showed that over and over again not only had large and inordinate numbers of men gone to the places of business at which non-union men were working, but large numbers had gone to the houses at which non-union men resided and had exercised the most brutal intimidation in order to get those men to leave their employment.


said he could not regard the statements which had just been made by the hon. and earned Member for Liverpool as facts. The Attorney-General had really shown that any such limitation of numbers was an absurdity. To suggest that three could peacefully picket was an absurdity, and the hon. Member himself had admitted that three would be out of the question to picket peaceably in hundreds of cases in this country. He could understand the anxiety of hon. Members sitting on the Opposition side of the House if all these cases had to be settled by a bench of magistrates composed of Labour men or of judges belonging to the labouring class, but when all these points had to be settled by men who were far removed from the workmen's position surely hon. Members could place sufficient trust in them to decide what was peaceful and reasonable when dealing with trade disputes. The Courts were composed of men of their own class, and it was entirely unnecessary to insert any further restriction in the clause. The statement that they had the right of cross-examination in regard to the evidence was as far from the truth as it could possibly be. On the contrary the Labour Party asked for that right and repeatedly asked for it, and were refused it. On the other hand the employers were granted that right by having one of their own class placed upon the Commission. Therefore the statement that they had a right to cross-examine witnesses was absurd. The hon. Member for Liverpool had quoted a host of cases of what he had called peaceful persuasion in which violence was used, but there was not a single instance which it would not be illegal to do if this Bill were passed. That was his answer to the hon. and learned Member for Liverpool's charge that Labour Members wanted peaceful persuasion in anything like the terms which he had put before the House. It would be a deplorable thing when they had got to that point to engage in such proceedings without running the risk of the consequences of their own actions. If one man chose of his own free will to assist three of his colleagues to picket, to say they should be in the clutches of the law was absurd. They knew why that number was put there. They could appoint three men as a trade union, but they had no control whatever over the employer, who might send another three men. He know cases where this had been done, and therefore they were not going to have any limitation of this character. They trusted to the reasonable, action of the men, and they left it to those in charge of the administration of the law to say whether they had broken the law or not. He hoped there would be no attempt made to fasten upon them anything like a limitation of this description.


said there was no desire that anything should be legalised in the shape of intimidation. What had been said by the learned Attorney-General might be so in the case of certain strikes, but he would like to call to mind the case of the dock strike. In that case he could quite imagine that the limitation of the pickets to the number of three would be quite impracticable, but if they agreed that there ought to be no limitation except such as would prevent intimidation surely they ought to be able to frame words to make that perfectly clear before the Committee, and what he had intervened for was to ask whether the Attorney - General was prepared to accept an Amendment upon this point which stood in the name of the hon. Member for Maidstone, which proposed to insert in line 10, after the word "manner"the words, "and in such manner as are not calculated to cause intimidation. "That seemed to him to be exactly what everybody appeared to desire, and that would leave it open to any person carrying on the strike to add any number they liked so long as those numbers, per se, were not calculated to cause intimidation. That was the way in which they ought to limit this enactment, and it would be in the direction of the views expressed during this debate. Therefore, he asked the learned Attorney-General whether he considered what he had suggested a reasonable way out of the difficulty.

*MR. EVELYN CECIL (Aston Manor)

said he understood the Attorney-General to say that he considered the numbers would be necessarily reasonable because the word reasonable had been introduced. He gathered that the hon. and learned Attorney-General was of opinion that he did not wish in this Bill that any numbers should be employed which tended in the direction of intimidation. He questioned whether, owing to the loose drafting of this clause, his intention would be carried out because the words of the Bill were — It shall be lawful for one or more persons, acting on their own behalf or on behalf of a trade union, in contemplation or furtherance of a trade dispute, to attend, peaceably and in a reasonable manner. He did not think that the words "In a reasonable manner "necessarily applied to the number at all, but they applied to the manner of behaviour. At any rate it was a doubtful point and open to that interpretation. That being so it was most desirable to introduce some such words as those which stood in the name of the noble Lord the Member for Maidstone. He hoped the learned Attorney-General would clearly explain to the Committee exactly what he considered was the meaning of the words "In a reasonable manner ' '


said he did not assume that such extraordinary things as those which had been put forward could possibly occur. This was a right to be exercised by trade unions and it was for all the unions to persuade men to join their ranks in a reasonable manner. It therefore con templated the collective action of the union, and that collective action must be peaceably and reasonably exercised. He had no objection to say that the right should be exercised in a reasonable manner and by a reasonable number. He did not think that the expression added to the strength of the clause, because in his opinion the words "reasonable manner" also governed the question of numbers, but he did not at the moment see any objection to saying that it should also be by "a reasonable number," and he would certainly consider that point.


thought the statement that the Attorney-General had made was a very fair one, and so far as he was concerned he should advise the withdrawal of the Amendment,


as a personal explanation, said he should just like to say a word in reference to what was said by the hon. Member to the effect that the Labour Members had the power of cross examination before the Commission. He was very sorry that it had been thought that he somewhat misled the Committee. [Cries of "No, no!"] He should like to say what was in my mind at the time.


I am afraid I cannot allow that. The whole question is entirely out of order. In fact the hon. Member's first reference to it was also out of order.


said that after the very sympathetic manner in which this Amendment had been received by the Attorney-General and in view of his promise to meet them upon the Report stage, he hoped the Committee would give him permission to withdraw his Amendment.

Leave to withdraw the Amendment was refused.

MR. KEIRHARDIE (Merthyr Tydvil)

hoped the Attorney-General would consider this matter very seriously before making any further concession. [OPPOSITION cries of "Oh, oh" and laughter.] This might be a matter for amusement with some hon. Members, but it was not a matter of amusement with them. The clause as drafted was already an exceedingly dangerous one from the point of view of those who desired to conduct picketing in a perfectly reasonable manner, they had had experience to show that any loophole of the kind provided by the words "peaceable and reasonable manner" was used to make picketing impossible altogether. He only rose to say that they objected, not because they desired picketing which was either unreasonable or not peaceable, but because they objected to the proposal as it stood, and their objection to the present words would be very much strengthened if the clause was to be further weakened in the way suggested by the learned Attorney-General. Therefore he hoped that the hon. and learned Gentleman would not too readily either give a promise or agree to the insertion of words which would make picketing even more difficult in the future than it was at the present moment.


said he did not wish to be misunderstood upon this point. What he said was that according to his view at present the words "reasonable manner" must have regard to the number of men employed, but he stated that he would consider between this and the Report stage whether the introduction of a limit of number into the construction of reasonableness would strengthen the clause, and if so he would prepare and introduce words for that purpose. It must be understood, however, that he did not give any explicit pledge.


said the Attorney-General had now stated what he intended to say and he accepted what he had said. He had told them that reasonable numbers would avoid intimidation and he had promised that oven if his own view was right and was included in "reasonable manner" he would not object to make it perfectly clear by the insertion of the words "reasonable number." Those words were the words of the noble Lord the Member for Maidstone, and it was the Attorney-General himself who suggested "reasonable number." Of course he could not now go behind what the Attorney-General said, but he hoped he would see his way to make the matter perfectly clear by putting into the Bill what he said was his own intention that this great power should only be exercised by a reasonable number. It must be apparent to the whole Committee that no matter in what manner the power was given if 100 men went in a perfectly peaceable way smoking round the door of the house of one man that per se was intimidation. He hoped the Attorney-General in consequence of the speech which had been made from below the gangway would not in any way detract from what he had already said, I but would really put in those words. He was sure he wished to act impartially between the parties concerned upon this point.


hoped the hon. and learned Gentleman would hesitate very much before accepting the suggestion which had been made. They had already introduced the words "peaceably and in a reasonable manner," and he was quite sure that those familiar with the way in which those words had been interpreted in the Courts and with the question of whether an act was done in a reasonable manner or not, which would have to be determined by a jury, would not have any hesitation in coming to the conclusion that those words were quite sufficient to cover all the points which had been raised in the debate. If as his right hon. friend said just now 100 men were standing outside waiting for one man who was inside he did not suppose there would be anyone who would hesitate to say that that would be found to be not attending "peaceably and in a reasonable manner." [Cries of "Why "?] In the case of these 100 men standing outside a house smoking it

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Baring, Godfrey (Isle of Wight) Burt, Rt. Hon. Thomas Davies, Timothy (Fulham)
Barlow, John Emmott(Somers. Buxton,Rt.Hn.SydneyCharles Delany, William
Barlow, Percy (Bedford) Byles, William Pollard Dewar, Arthur (Edinburgh,N.)
Barnard, E. B. Cairns, Thomas Dickinson, W.H(S.Pancras, N.)
Barnes, G. N. Cameron, Robert Dilke, Rt.. Hon. Sir Charles
Barran, Rowland Hirst Carr-Gomm, H. W. Dobson, Thomas W.
Barry, E. (Cork, S.) Causton,Rt.Hn.Richard Knight Dolan, Charles Joseph
Beale, W. P. Chance, Frederick William Duckworth, James
Beaumont,Hubert(Eastbourne Cheetham, John Frederick Duncan, C. (Barrow-in-Furness
Beaumont, W.C.B.(Hexham) Cherry, Rt. Hon. R R. Duncan, J. H. (York, Otley)
Bell, Richard Churchill, Winston Spencer Dunn, A. Edward (Camborne)'
Bellairs, Carlyon Clancy, John Joseph Dunne,MajorE.Martin(Walsal)
Benn, Sir JWilliams(Devonp'rt Clarke, C. Goddard Edwards, Clement (Denbigh)
Bonn, W.(T'w'rHamlets,S.Geo. Cleland, J. W. Edwards, Enoch (Hanley)
Berridge, T. H. D. Clough, W. Edwards, Frank (Radnor)
Bethell, J.H. (Essex, Romford) Clynes, J. R. Elibank, Master of
Bethell, T. R. (Essex, Maldon) Coats,SirT.Glen(Renfrew,W.) Esmonde, Sir Thomas
Birrell, Rt. Hon. Augustine Cobbold, Felix Thornley Essex, R. W.

had been suggested that they were standing outside in a manner amounting to intimidation, and that was not peaceably and in a reasonable manner. Therefore, that case "was covered by the words in this clause. He hoped that they would not have any further difficulty and complications introduced by the insertion of words which would only give rise to greater trouble, and more litigation.

Two hon. Members rose to continue the discussion, but


rose in his place and claimed to move, "Thai the question be now put." [Cries of "Oh. oh "and" Gag "from the OPPOSITION benches.]

Question put.

The Committee divided:—Ayes 319; Noes, 49. (Divison List No. 283.)

Eve, Harry Trelawney Lover, A.Levy(Essex,Harwich) Reddy, M.
Farrell, James Patrick Levy Maurice Redmond, John E.(Waterford)
Fenwick, Charles Lewis, John Herbert Redmond, William (Clare)
Ferens, T. R. Lloyd-George, Rt. Hon. David Richards, T. F. (Wolverh'mptn
Ffrench, Peter Lough, Thomas Richardson, A.
Findlay, Alexander Lundon, W. Rickett, J. Compton
Flavin, Michael Joseph Macdonald, J. R. (Leicester) Roberts, Charles H. (Lincoln)
Flynn, James Christopher Macdonald, J. M.(FalkirkB'ghs Roberts, G. H. (Norwich)
Fowler, Rt. Hon. Sir Henry Maclean, Donald Robertson, SirG.Scott(Bradf'rd
Freeman-Thomas, Freeman MacVeagh, Jeremiah (Down,S. Robertson, J. M. (Tyneside)
Fuller, John Michael F. MacVeigh,Charles (Donegal,E. Robson, Sir William Snowdon
Fullerton, Hugh M'Callum, John M. Rogers, F. E. Newman
Gibb, James (Harrow) M'Hugh, Patrick A. Rose, Charles Day
Gill, A. H. M'Killop, W. Rowlands, J.
Ginnell, L. M'Laren, Sir C. B. (Leicester) Runciman, Walter
Gladstone, Rt. Hn. Herbert John M'Laren, H. D. (Stafford, W.) Russell, T. W.
Glover, Thomas M'Micking, Major G. Rutherford, V. H. (Brentford)
Goddard, Daniel Ford Maddison, Frederick Samuel, Herbert L. (Cleveland)
Gooch, George Peabody Mallet, Charles E. Scarisbrick, T. T. L.
Grant, Come Manfield, Harry (Northants) Schwann, C. Duncan (Hyde)
Greenwood, G. (Peterborough) Marks, G. Croydon(Launcesten Schwann,Sir C.E. (Manchester)
Grey, Rt. Hon. Sir Edward Marnham, F. J. Scott, A. H. (Ashton-under-Lyne
Griflith, Ellis J. Mason, A. E. W. (Coventry) Sears, J. E.
Gulland, John W. Massie, J. Seaverns, J. H.
Hall, Frederick Masterman, C. F. G. Seddon, J.
Halpin, J. Meagher, Michael Seely, Major J. B.
Hammond, John Meehan, Patrick A. Shackleton, David James
Harcourt, Rt. Hon. Lewis Micklem, Nathaniel Shaw, Rt. Hon. T. (Hawick B.)
Hardie,J. Keir(MerthyrTydvil Mond, A. Shipman, Dr. John G.
Hardy, George A. (Suffolk) Montagu, E. S. Simon, John Allsebrook
Harmsworth, Cecil B.(Worc'r) Montgomery, H. G. Smeaton, Donald Mackenzie
Harrington, Timothy Mooney, J. J. Smyth, Thomas F. (Leitrim.S.)
Hart-Davies, T. Morgan, G. Hay (Cornwall) Snowden, P.
Harvey, A. G. C. (Rochdale) Morgan, J. Lloyd (Carmarthen Soares, Ernest J.
Haslam, James (Derbyshire) Morse, L. L. Spicer, Sir Albert
Haworth, Arthur A. Morton, Alpheus Cleophas Stanger, H. Y.
Haydon, John Patrick Murnaghan, George Stanley, Hn. A. Lyulph (Chesh,
Hazel, Dr. A. E. Murphy, John Steadman, W. C.
Hazleton, Richard Myer, Horatio Stewart, Halley (Greenock)
Hedges, A. Paget Napier, T. B. Stewart-Smith, D. (Kendal)
Henderson,Arthur (Durham) Nicholson,CharlesN.(Doncast'r Strachey, Sir Edward
Henry, Charles S. Nolan, Joseph Strauss, E. A. (Abingdon)
Higham, John Sharp Norton, Capt. Cecil William Stuart, James (Sunderland)
Hobart, Sir Robert Nussey, Thomas Willans Sullivan, Donal
Hodge, John Nuttall, Harry Summerbell,T.
Hogan, Michael O' Brien,Kendal(Tipperary Mid Sutherland, J. E.
Holden, E. Hopkinson O'Connor, James (Wicklow, W.) Taylor, John W. (Durham)
Horniman, Emslie John O'Connor, John (Kildare, N.) Thomas,Sir A.(Glamorgan, E.)
Hudson, Walter O'Doherty, Philip Thomasson, Franklin
Hutton, Allied Eddison O'Donnell, C. J. (Walworth) Thompson, J.W.H.(Somerset,E
Hyde, Clarendon O'Donnell, T. (Kerry, W.) Thorne, William
Illingworth, Percy H. O Dowd, John Toulmin, George
Isaacs, Rufus Daniel O'Grady, J. Ure, Alexander
Jackson, R. S. O'Hare Patrick Verney, F. W.
Jacoby, James Alfred O'Malley, William Vivian, Henrys
Jardine, Sir J. O'Mara, James Walker, H. De R. (Leicester)
Jenkins, J. O'Shaughnessy, P. J. Walsh, Stephen
Johnson, John (Gateshead) Parker, James (Halifax) Walters, John Tudor
Johnson, W. (Nuneaton) Partington, Oswald Walton, Sir John L. (Leeds,S.
Jones, Leif (Appleby) Paul, Herbert Walton, Joseph (Barnsley)
Jones, William (Carnarvonshire Paulton, James Mellor Ward, John (Stoke upon Trent
Jowett, F. W. Pearce, Robert (Staffs. Leek) Ward, W Dudley (Southampton
Joyce, Michael Philipps,Col. Ivor (S'thampton) Wardle, George J.
Kearley, Hudson E. Philipps, Owen C (Pembroke) Wason, John Cathcart(Orkney
Kekewich, Sir George Pickersgill, Edward Hare Waterlow, D. S.
Kelley, George D. Pirie, Duncan V. Watt, H. Anderson
Kennedy, Vincent Paul Pollard, Dr. White, J. D. (Dumbartonshire
King, Alfred John (Knutsford) Power, Patrick Joseph White, Luke (York, E.R.)
Lamb, Ernest H. (Rochester) Price, C. K. (Edinb'gh,Central) White, Patrick (Meath, North
Lambert, George Rainy, A. Holland Whitehead, Rowland
Lamont, Norman Raphael, Herbert H. Whitley,J. H. (Halifax)
Law, Hugh A. (Donegal, W.) Rea, Russell (Gloucester) Wiles, Thomas
Layland-Barratt, Francis
Wilkie, Alexander Wilson, J. H. (Middlesbrough) TELLERS FOR THE AYES—Mr.
Wills, Arthur Walters Wilson, W. T. (Westhoughton) Whiteley and Mr. J. A.
Wilson, Henry J. (York, W.R.) Woodhouse,iSir,JT.(Huddersfd Pease.
Aubrey-Fletcher, Rt. Hn. SirH. Craik, Sir Henry Nicholson, Win. G. (Petersfield)
Balcarres, Lord Douglas, Rt. Hon. A. Akers Parkes, Ebenezer
Banbury, Sir Frederick George Fell, Arthur Rawlinson, John Frederick P.
Baring, Hon. Guy (Winchester) Finch, Rt. Hon. George H. Roberts, S. (Sheffield, Ecelesall
Barrie, H. T. (Londonderry,N.) Fletcher, J. S. Salter, Arthur Clavell
Beach, Hn.MichaelHugh Hicks Haddock, George R. Smith,F.E.(Liverpool, Walton)
Bowles, G. Stewart Hamilton, Marquess of Starkey, John R.
Bridgeman, W. Clive Hardy,Laurence (Kent,Ashford Talbot',Rt.Hn.J.G.(Oxf'dUniv)
Butcher, Samuel Henry Hervey, F.WF(BuryS.'Edm'ds Thomson,W.Mitchell- (Lanark)
Carson, Rt. Hon. Sir Edw. H. Hill, Sir Clement (Shrewsbury) Thornton, Percy M.
Castlereagh, Viscount Hills, J. W. Turnour Viscount
Cave, George Hunt, Rowland Williams, Col. R. (Dorset, W.)
Cavendish,Rt.Hon.Victor C.W Keswick, William Wortley,Rt. Hon. C. B. Stuart-
Cecil, Evelyn (Aston Manor) Lambert, George
Cecil, Lord John P. Joicey- Law, Andrew Bonar (Dulwich) TELLERS FOR THE NOES
Cecil, Lord R. (Marylebone, E.) Lyttelton, Rt. Hon. Alfred Viscount Valentia and Mr.
Corbett, A. Cameron ((Glasgow) Mason, James F. (Windsor) Forster.
Craig, Charles Curtis(Antrim,S Morpeth, Viscount

Question, "That the words ' not exceeding three' be there inserted," put accordingly, and negatived.


moved to report progress. They had been in the House, he said, since twelve o'clock; it had been a long and tiring day; and at that late hour it was not worth while going on with another Amendment.

MR. SHACKLETON (Clitheroe)

asked the Patronage Secretary when the Government proposed to take the Bill again.

MR. GEORGE WHITELEY (Yorkshire, W.B., Pudsey)

said it was rather difficult to say. The Government were very anxious that the Committee stage of the Bill should be finished before the holidays. The Bill, however, could not be taken before Friday, but it would be put down as the first order on that day and, if necessary, the House would sit till eleven o'clock to discuss it. If the Committee stage was not finished by eleven o'clock on Friday night the House would have to devote a good many hours to it on Saturday. And should the Committee stage be still unfinished he was afraid it would have to go over to October.


Might I suggest that we should sit on Sunday?


said he was afraid the rules of the House did not permit them to do so. [Cries of "Yes they do."] If, however, the Committee stage of the Bill was not concluded on Saturday night the Government must seriously consider the question of taking it on the Monday of the following week.

Motion made, and Question, "That the Chairman do report Progress; and ask leave to sit again,"—(Sir Edward Carson)—put, end agreed to.

Committee report Progress; to sit again upon Monday next.

Adjournment,—Motion made, and Question, "That this House do now adjourn until To-morrow."—Mr. Whiteley)—put, and agreed to.

Adjourned accordingly at live minutes before Eleven o'clock.