§ Mr. CLOUGH
asked the President of the Board of Education whether, in view 837 of the fact that in connection with the formulation of new educational endowment schemes Sir Robert Finlay is retained by the National Society, he will say if Sir Robert Finlay is consulted by the Board of Education before any draft scheme is issued to the public; and, if so, whether this course was adopted in the case of the proposed new schemes for Gisburn and Giggleswick, situated in the West Riding?
§ The PRESIDENT of the BOARD of EDUCATION (Mr. Runciman)
The Board have no means of knowing whether Sir Robert Finlay is or is not retained by the National Society in the connection suggested or in any other connection. The answer to both parts of the question is in the negative.
The HON. MEMBER
also asked the right hon. Gentleman whether he has received any suggestions from the West Riding education authority and others with regard to the proposed new scheme for the Halstead and Stanley Foundations, at Gisburn, to the effect that the present vicar and owner of Gisburn Park be trustees for life, but that the future vicars of Gisburn and the owners of Gisburn Park shall not beex officiotrustees of the foundation, and that upon the death or prior resignation of the present vicar an additional representative trustee be appointed by the West Riding County Council and upon the death or prior resignation of the present owner of Gisburn Park an additional representative trustee be appointed by the Gisburn parish council; if so, whether he can see his way to embody these suggestions in the new scheme; and, if not, will he say why he cannot do so?
§ Mr. RUNCIMAN
The answer to the first paragraph of my hon. Friend's question is in the affirmative. The answer to the second paragraph is in the negative. It is impossible to compress within the limits of an oral reply to a question the considerations, legal and historical, upon which the Board's decision is based. These considerations have been communicated at length by letter to the local education authority and to my hon. Friend himself. I have nothing to add to the information thus conveyed.
§ Mr. CLOUGH
May I ask the right hon. Gentleman whether for the future, in drafting new schemes for educational endowments he will adopt the principle of committing these trusts to some 838 public body like the parish, district or county council, instead of perpetuating as ex officio trustees the State clerics and their confederates the largest local landowners?
§ Mr. RUNCIMAN
I cannot give an answer to a general question of that nature in respect of every trust which comes within the province of the Board of Education.