HC Deb 10 April 1912 vol 36 cc1275-6

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) whether he was aware that by the Statute 51 Geo. III., c. 49, the Bishop of Bangor was enabled to enclose certain common lands in the parishes of Penrhos and Abererch, in Carnarvonshire; and whether the Welsh Disestablishment Bill will provide for the restitution of public rights or for compensation for their loss in respect of these enclosures; (2) whether he was aware that the Statute 6 and 7 Vic, c. 14, gave power to the Bishop of Bangor to enclose lands in the manor of Gogarth, at Llandudno; if so. how much land was so enclosed; find how the rights over that land will be affected by the Welsh Disestablishment Bill; and (3) whether his attention had been called to the acreage of lands which have been enclosed under various Acts of Geo. III. and subsequent reigns on manors belonging to the Welsh sees; whether he had formed any estimate of the present value of rights thus taken away from the public by Parliament; and whether he will provide in the Welsh Disestablishment Bill that rights of public and monetary value now held by the Church shall as far as possible be restored to the nation?


As I informed my hon. Friend last Wednesday, considerable powers of enclosure were given at this period under various Acts of Parliament to bishops, amongst others. The estates of the bishops have, however, since that date passed over to the Ecclesiastical Commissioners. It would be impossible without prolonged inquiry to give any estimate either of the acreage or present value of the rights which accrued to Welsh sees in consequence of these enclosures, though a considerable amount of information may be gathered from the Volume of Appendices to the Report of the Royal Commission on Land in Wales and Monmouthshire (1896, Cd. 8242, pages 208 to 213). I can only repeat that it would be premature to state what the effect of the Bill will be in regard to these lands.