§ MR LEA (St. Pancras, E.)
To ask the First Lord of the Treasury whether his attention has been drawn to the Acts 23 Geo. 3, c. 86, and 33 Geo. 3, c. 77, whereby an annuity of £2,000 has been conferred on all and every the heirs to whom the title of Lord Rodney shall descend; whether he is aware that to date the nation has paid seven holders of this title £248,000; and whether he can promise that the Government will bring in a Bill to end this annuity.
§ (Answered by Sir H. Campbell-Banner-man.) In 1890 terms wore agreed between the Treasury and Lord Rodney for the commutation of this pension. The sum proposed to be paid was approximately twenty-seven years purchase, that being the high test rate which the Treasury felt justified in allowing, in view of the opinion expressed by a Select Committee of this House in 1887. The agreement was duly submitted to the Court of Chancery, but the Court refused its consent on the ground that the arrangement was not sufficiently beneficial to the persons interested in the remainder. The commutation could not, therefore, be effected. The public faith has been pledged by Parliament to the payment of this pension, and I do not think that Parliament would be likely to entertain proposals for its termination otherwise than on equitable terms.
§ MR. LEA
To ask the First Lord of the Treasury whether his attention has been drawn to the letters patent dated 22nd December, 8 Will. 3, to the letters patent dated 29th June, 1715, and Acts 1 Geo. 1, No. 78, and 19 and 20 Vic, c. 59, whereby a pension of £2,880 net was conferred on the heirs of the Duke of Schomberg; whether he is aware that this pension has been reduced by commutations in 1855, 1876, 1877, and 1883, until at the present time £720 still continues to be paid to the heirs of this individual; will he state the 937 amount to date that has been paid by the public to the heirs under these letters patent and Acts, including the capital amounts paid under the commutations dated above, and the names of those heirs to-day to whom the £720 is paid, specifying the amounts paid to each; and whether he will give this House an assurance that he will introduce a short Bill next session to end this annuity.
§ (Answered by Sir H. Campbell-Banner-man.) The sums paid for commutation of the portions of this pension which have been redeemed were—
§ To calculate the total sum that has been paid in respect of this pension during the last 200 years would require a great deal of research, even if complete records are in existence, which is more than doubtful. Of the annual sum of £720 which remains payable, one moiety is paid to the trustees of the will of the late H. P. Powys and the other moiety to Mr. R. Gosling. Those recipients have never been willing to accept commutation on such terms as the Treasury has been able to offer, namely a sum approximately equal to twenty-seven years purchase. I cannot undertake to introduce a Bill next session to make acceptance compulsory.
§ MR. LEA
To ask the first Lord of the Treasury whether his attention has been drawn to the Act 46 Geo. 3, c. 146, whereby an annuity of £5,000 has been conferred on such persons to whom the title of Earl Nelson shall descend; that this annuity was in addition to a sum of £120,000 as a further provision for the family of the said Earl Nelson; whether he is aware that under this Act the nation has paid the Nelson family £625,000 to date; and whether he can give an assurance that next year this Government will bring in a short Bill to end this annuity.
§ (Answered by Sir H. Campbell-Banner- man.) The particulars of this pension (and of the others referred to in the two 938 previous questions) are shown at page 45 of the published Finance Accounts. The sums paid under the Act of 46 Geo. 3, in addition to the pension, amounted, I understand, to £110,000. The circumstances in regard to the possibility of determining this pension are the same as in the case of Lord Rodney.