HC Deb 23 March 1907 vol 9 cc171-2

A message from the lords, announced their lordships' assent to the mutiny bill, and the sugar drawback.— Mr Whitbread observing that he had on a former evening stated it as his opinion that W. Drake had not received his wound in the battle of Camperdown, declared that a do. cument had since been put into his hands, by which it was proved that that person had actually lost his leg from a hurt received in that action. This document was a letter from captain Bligh of the Director, to Mr. Bewick, then Chairman of a committee at Lloyd's for the relief of the sufferers in that action. He begged, therefore, to be understood as retracting his assertion, and he would move for documents to explain the circumstance; but lest any false impression should go abroad, that when those papers should be produced, he would propose the liberation of the prisoner, he would observe, that the circumstance which he had just mentioned was not the only misrepresentation and falsehood contained in Mr. Drake's evidence. There were numerous others; among the rest he had declared, that he had never applied for relief to the admiralty, when in fact he had done so to the very person by whom he had been questioned. He therefore would first move for copies of all communications made by capt. Bligh, late of the Director, to N. Bewick, esq. chairman of the committee at Lloyd's, for the relief of wounded seamen. The Speaker observed, with regard to the latter part of the motion, that the Society were not known to that house, and therefore could not form part of a motion from the Chair. Mr. Windham concurred in this opinion, declaring, that however good the intentions of the society alluded to, it would be very improper that it should be recognized in that house. Mr. Fuller seemed to think that Drake ought to be liberated. After a few words from Mr. Rose, and Mr. Jeffery, Mr. Whitbread withdrew his motion on account of the improper recognition which it contained; but in reply to Mr. Fuller's observations, repeated, that the imprisonment of Mr. Drake, was not in consequence of the circumstance alone which he had just cleared up.—On the motion of Mr. Whitbread, the following papers were then ordered to be laid before the house: a copy of the Smart Ticket produced by. Mr. Drake, whereby he received a pension from the chest of Greenwich: also, a copy of the Sick Ticket sent by capt. Bligh, late. of his Majesty's ship Director, to the hospital at Yarmouth.—Mr. Bankes gave notice of a motion tomorrow respecting places granted in reversion. Lord Howick assured his hon. friend, that he should have his most complete support. Not a single reversion had been given away by the present adminis- tration, although it was well known that several very valuable ones had fallen in— Mr. Herbert obtained leave to bring in a bill to suspend for one year, the penalties on the regrating of Oak Bark.—Lord Temples, finding that the committee on this subject had not yet finished its investigation, intended to allow his bill to drop for the present session, and of course supported the hon. gent's. motion.