HC Deb 19 April 1910 vol 16 cc2009-13

Resolution reported, That it is expedient to authorise the payment, out of the Consolidated Fund, of the Salaries and Pensions of two additional Judges of the High Court who may be appointed under any Act of the present Session.

11.0 P.M.

Motion made, and Question proposed, "That the House doth agree with the Committee in the said Resolution."


I thought we understood the Prime Minister to say yesterday that this would not be taken if not reached before eleven o'clock.

The ATTORNEY-GENERAL (Sir William Robson)

That it would not be taken yesterday.


If I can get any to vote with me I shall divide the House on this question. In my opinion it is absolutely ridiculous for the Government to come down and ask for additional judges. The judges' holidays are represented by 119 days out of every year excluding Sundays. There are 365 days in the year, and some years there are fifty-three Sundays. There are 313 working flays, and of these the judges have 119 holidays. In Hilary term they have twenty-two days, at Easter fourteen days, at Trinity eleven days, and at Michaelmas seventy-two days—a period of 119 days in all. I say that is a time out of all proportion to what other business men in this country are able to afford, and for the life of me I cannot see why the judges, who are paid large salaries, which no one can say is not reasonable remuneration for the work they do, should have this large amount of time, or why the Government should ask for additional judges. In the House of Lords we have four judges drawing £6,000 a year each. I have not been able to find out how many days these judges sit throughout the year, and cannot therefore give the House information on that point.

We have in the Supreme Court and the Court of Appeal five judges each drawing a salary of £5,000 a year, and the Master of the Rolls, who draws £6,000 a year. In addition, there are other judges drawing £5,000 a year, with a pension amounting to two-thirds of their salaries after serving twenty years. I do not think anyone will deny that that is a fair remuneration for the work they do. If that be the ease, let us now see what amount of time they devote to their work. The judges meet at the courts at eleven o'clock on Mondays, and they adjourn at four o'clock, and on other days they meet at ten and adjourn at four, after adjourning at 1.30 for half an hour, and often for a much longer period. This gives them an average working day of something like six hours. On Saturdays, the judges sit for a short time only, and on many occasions they do not sit at all. The question, therefore, is what amount of time do they devote to their duties outside the ordinary time when they are not sitting in the courts? It is impossible for a layman to answer that question, and no doubt judges have a great deal of work outside their official hours. Assuming that the amount of time they are occupied outside their official hours is two hours per day, that brings their work up to about seven hours per day. I say as a business man, having business to attend to myself, if I can get a week's holiday in the course of the year I am well contented, and I do not see why judges receiving these large salaries and pensions should be entitled to take 119 days holiday out of 313, together with half a day's holiday on Saturdays as well. What section of the community except the judges are able to take at the expense of their employers or their trade holidays to this extent? I contend that if the judges took the same amount of holidays as other citizens in the State we should have plenty of judges, to do the work required. Probably owing to the fact that there are 150 lawyers in this House these privileges are accorded to these weary Willies. The working men of this country are asked to contribute to the salaries of these men. Many working men have to work twelve hours a day all the year round, Sundays included. [An HON. MEMBER: "Shame."] Yes, it is a shame, but highly paid State servants are able to take the very large amount of leisure which other citizens are unable to take. Therefore, if I can get anybody to divide with me, I shall certainly do so against this Resolution.

Question put, "That the House doth agree with the Committee in the said Resolution."

The House divided: Ayes, 238; Noes, 69.

Division No. 43.] AYES. [11.10 p.m.
Adam, Major W. A. Furness, Sir Christopher O'Neill, Hon. A. E. B. (Antrim, Mid)
Addison, Dr. C. Gelder, Sir W. A. Orde-Powlett, Hon. W. G. A.
Ainsworth, John Stirling Gilmour, Captain J. Paget, Almeric Hugh
Allen, Charles P. Goldsmith, Frank Palmer, Godfrey Mark
Anderson, A. Grant, J. A. Pease, Rt. Hon. Joseph A.
Anson, Sir William Reynell Greenwood, G. G. Peel, Capt. R. F. (Woodbridge)
Archer-Shee, Major M. Grenfell, Cecil Alfred Perkins, Walter F.
Bagot, Captain J. Gulland, John W. Peto, Basil Edward
Baird, J. L. Haldane, Rt. Hon. Richard B. Pickersgill, Edward Hare
Baker, H. T. (Accrington) Hall, D. B. (Isle of Wight) Pollock, Ernest Murray
Baker, Joseph A. (Finsbury, E.) Hamersley, A. St. George Pretyman, E. G.
Baker, Sir R. L. (Dorset, N.) Hamilton, Marquess of (Londonderry) Price, C. E. (Edinburgh, Central)
Balcarres, Lord Harcourt, Rt. Hon. Lewis (Rossendale) Pringle, William M. R.
Balfour, Robert (Lanark) Harcourt, Robert V. (Montrose) Proby, Col. Douglas James
Banbury, Sir Frederick George Harrison-Broadley, H. B. Quilter, William Eley C.
Barclay, Sir T. Harvey, T. E. (Leeds, W.) Raffan, Peter Wilson
Barnston, H. Haslam, Lewis (Monmouth) Ratcliff, Major R. F.
Barrie, H. T. (Londonderry, N.) Havelock-Allan, Sir Henry Rawlinson, John Frederick Peel
Barry, Edward (Cork, S.) Haworth, Arthur A. Rawson, Colonel R. H.
Barry, Redmond J. (Tyrone, N.) Healy, Maurice (Cork, N.E.) Reddy, M.
Bathurst, Hon. A. B. (Glouc, E.) Heath, Col. A. H. Rees, J. D.
Beale, W. P. Helmsley, Viscount Rice, Hon. Walter F.
Benn, W. (Tower Hamlets, S. Geo.) Henderson, H. (Berks, Abingdon) Roberts, Charles H. (Lincoln)
Bentinck, Lord H. Cavendish Higham, John Sharp Robson, Sir William Snowdon
Beresford, Lord C. Hill, Sir Clement Roche, Augustine (Cork)
Bird, A. Hillier, Dr. A. P. Roe, Sir Thomas
Birrell, Rt. Hon. Augustine Hobhouse, Rt. Hon. Charles E. H. Ronaldshay, Earl of
Black, Arthur W. Hohier, G. F. Rothschild, Lionel de
Boyton, James Hooper, A. G. Runciman, Rt. Hon. Walter
Brackenbury, H. L. Hope, Harry (Bute) Rutherford, Watson
Brassey, Capt. R. (Banbury) Hope, James Fitzalan (Sheffield) Samuel, S. M. (Whitechapel)
Bridgeman, W. Clive Horner, A. L. Sanderson, Lancelot
Brotherton, E. A. Howard, Hon. Geoffrey Sandys, G. J. (Somerset, Wells)
Burdett-Coutts, W. Hughes, S. L. Seely, Col., Right Hon. J. E. B.
Burns, Rt. Hon. John Hunt, Rowland Shechan, Daniel Daniel
Burt, Rt. Hon. Thomas Illingworth, Percy H. Shortt, Edward
Buxton, C. R. (Devon, Mid) tsaacs, Sir Rufus Daniel Soames, Arthur Wellesley
Buxton, Rt Hon. Sydney C. (Poplar) Jackson, Sir J. (Devonport) Soares, Ernest J.
Campbell, Rt. Hon. J. H. M. Jackson, John A. (Whitehaven) Stanier, Beville
Carllie, E. Hildred Jardine, E. (Somerset, E.) Starkey, John R.
Castlereagh, Viscount Jessel, Captain H. M. Staveley-Hill, Henry (Staffordshire)
Cator, John Johnson, W. Steel-Maitland, A. D.
Cautley, H. G. Jones, Edgar (Merthyr Tydvil) Stewart, Gershom (Ches. Wirral)
Cave, George Jones, H. Haydn (Merioneth) Strauss, A.
Cawley, Sir Frederick (Prestwich) Jones, William (Carnarvonshire) Summers, John Wooiley
Cawley, Harold T. (Heywood) Keswick, William Talbot, Lord E.
Cecil, Evelyn (Aston Manor) Kinloch-Cooke, sir Clement Taylor, Theodore C. (Radcliffe)
Cecil, Lord Hugh (Oxford University) Knight, Capt. E. A. Tennant, Harold John
Chaloner, Colonel R. G. W. Lambert, George Thomas, D. A. (Cardiff)
Chambers, J. Law, Hugh A. (Donegal, W.) Thynne, Lord Alexander
Chancellor, H. G. Levy, Sir Maurice Toulmin, George
Channing, Sir Francis Ailston Lewis, John Herbert Trevelyan, Charles Philips
Churchill, Rt. Hon. Winston S. Lewisham, Viscount Ure, Rt. Hon. Alexander
Clyde, J. Avon Llewelyn, Venables Valentia, Viscount
Collins, Sir Wm. J. (St. Pancras, W.) Lloyd, G. A. Verney, F. W.
Corbett, A. Cameron (Glasgow) Lloyd-George, Rt. Hon. David Verrall, George Henry
Courthope, George Loyd Locker-Lampson, G. (Salisbury) Walker, Col. W. H. (Lancashire)
Craig, Captain James (Down, E.) Low, Sir F. A. (Norwich) Walrond, Hon. Lionel
Craig, Norman (Kent) Lyttelton, Rt. Hon. A. (Hanover Sq.) Ward, John (Stoke-upon-Trent)
Crawshay-Williams, Eliot Mackinder, Halford J. Ward, W. Dudley (Southampton)
Crean, Eugene Macmaster, Donald Warner, Thomas Courtenay T.
Croft, H. P. Macnamara, Dr. Thomas J. Wason, Rt. Hon. E. (Clackmannan)
Crossley, Sir William J. McKenna, Rt. Hon. Reginald Wheler, Granviile C. H.
Dairymple, Viscount M'Laren, F. W. S. (Line, Spalding) White, Major G. D. (Lanes., Southport)
Dalziel, D. (Brixton) Manfield, Harry White, J. Dundas (Dumbartonshire)
Davies, E. William (Eilion) Masterman, C. F. G. White, Sir Luke (York, E.R.)
Davies, Sir W. Howell (Bristol, S.) Meagher, Michael Whitehouse, John Howard
Dawes, J. A. Meysey-Thompson, E. C. Williams, Aneurin (Plymouth)
Denman, Hon. R. D. Middlebrook, William Williams, P. (Middlesbrough)
Dickson, Rt. Hon. C. Scott Millar, J. D. Williams, Llewelyn (Carmarthen)
Dixon, C. H. Morpeth, Viscount Wilson, Hon. G. G. (Hull, W.)
Elverston, H. Muspratt, M. Wilson, John (Durham, Mid)
Esmonde, Sir Thomas Neilson, Francis Wilson, T. F. (Lanark, N.E.)
Falconer, J. Newman, John R. P. Wing, Thomas
Fell, Arthur Nicholson, Charles N. (Doncaster) Wood, T. M'Kinnon (Glasgow)
Fenwick, Charles Nolan, Joseph Worthington-Evans, L. (Colchester)
Ferens, T. R. Norton, Capt. Cecil W. Younger, George (Ayr Burghs)
Fitzroy, Hon. E. A. Norton-Griffiths, J. (Wednesbury)
Forster. Henry William O'Doherty, Philip TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—Master
France, G. A. O'Donnell, T. (Kerry, W.) of Elibank and Mr. Fuller.
Armitage, Robert Henry, Charles S. Pointer, Joseph
Bentham, G. J. Hodge, John Ponsonby, A. W. H.
Bewerman, C. W. Hogan, Michael Radford, George Heynes
Brace, William Hudson, Walter Rendall, Athelstan
Brunner, J. F. L. Jowett, F. W. Richards, Thomas
Chapple, Dr. William Allen Joyce, Michael Koch, Walter F. (Pembroke)
Clough, William Kilbride, Denis Roche, John (Galway, East)
Clynes, J. R. Lardner, James Carrige Rushe Seddon, J.
Cowan, W. H Leach, Charles Shackleton, David James
Craig, Herbert J. (Tynemouth) Lehmann, R. C. Smyth, Thomas F. (Leitrim, S.)
Delany, William Lundon, T. Stanley, Albert (Staffs., N.W.)
Duffy, William J. Macdonald, J. R. (Leicester) Sutton, John E.
Duncan, C. (Barrow-in-Furness) MacVeagh, Jeremiah Taylor, John W. (Durham)
Edwards, Enoch Meehan, Francis E. (Leitrim, N.) Thomas, J. H. (Derby)
Ferguson, R. C. Munro Nannetti, Joseph P. Twist, Henry
Ffrench, Peter Newton, Harry Kottingham Wads worth, J.
Flavin, Michael Joseph O'Connor, John (Kildare, N.) Walsh, Stephen
Gill, A. H. O'Donnell, John (Mayo, S.) White, Patrick (Meath, North)
Glover, Thomas O'Dowd, John Whyte, Alexander F. (Perth)
Gwynn, Stephen Lucius (Galway) O'Shaughnessy, P. J. Wilkie, Alexander
Hancock, J. G. O'Sullivan, Eugene Wilson, W. T. (Westhoughton)
Harvey, W. E. (Derbyshire, N.E.) Parker, James (Halifax)
Haslam, James (Derbyshire) Philips, John (Longford, S.) TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—Mr
Mealy, Timothy Michael Pirie, Duncan V. Markham and Mr. Watt.