§ Motion made, and Question proposed, "That the Bill, as amended, be now considered."
Mr. FREDERICK HALL (Dulwich)
I beg to move, to leave out the word "now," and, at the end of the Question to add the words "upon this day three months."
I think we are in a somewhat difficult position in opposing this Bill, because I know full well it has been very carefully considered by a Committee upstairs, and, naturally, every Member of the House pays the greatest care and attention to the decisions that may be come to by Committees of the House. But I think that even before Committees of the House of Commons sometimes various facts are not prominently brought forward which would help them to come to a decision that might be to the advantage of those interested. I think I am right in saying that, although the Committee that considered this Bill was a small Committee, nevertheless, the result that was originally arrived at was not unanimous. It is in these circumstances that I crave the indulgence of the House in bringing forward a Motion which stands in my name. This Bill intends to make an increase in the cost of shipping, both for wharfage and for dock use. It may be asked what is the meaning of this, and I call the attention of the House to the fact that there are at the present time statutory charges which are now charged upon the various tonnage entering the port of Cardiff, and for the use of the appliances by which cargoes chiefly of coal are placed on board these 2353 steamers. It is proposed by this Bill that there should be an increase in the charges, ranging from 22 to 37½ per cent. It may be assumed that for this increase in the cost there is to be given to the shipowners some compensating advantages in regard to improved facilities for loading or other matters.
In this case—and I think I am safe in saying it almost forms a precedent—there is no improvement to be given for the increased charges. It has been argued, if these increased charges are placed upon shipowners coming to load their cargoes at Cardiff they will be able in the natural course of events to protect themselves by going to other ports besides Cardiff, but that cannot be done because there is a form of charter by which steamers coming into South Wales District must go to Cardiff, Penarth, and Barry, and the shipowner has to send his ship to either of these places, and the reason is that the cargo may be placed on board as quickly as possible in order that the colliery proprietor should not run the risk of additional charges for demurrage incurred in consequence of the delay of the steamer for a certain number of days. Therefore, the House will realise that the power of shipowners in this direction is entirely gone, and that they will be at the mercy of the shippers as to whether their steamers are to be loaded at one port or another, and that if the shipowners had the misfortune to be sent to various other ports he would be mulcted in additional charges for loading which he would not have to pay either at Penarth or Barry. I should like to direct attention to the importance of this matter because of the enormous amount of tonnage which leaves the port of Cardiff during the year. According to the 1912 figures, there were nearly 8,500 steamers carrying 10,000,000 tons of coal that left Cardiff during that year, and the House will at once appreciate the importance primarily to the shipowner of any increase in the due. It may be said that as far as this House is concerned we are not here for the protection of any specific industry. I grant that that is the case, and although this Bill has been opposed by practically all the leading shipowners throughout the country, I cannot help thinking it would be very detrimental to the interests of the country at large if these additional charges were allowed to be placed upon the shipownsrs which might necessarily lead to an increase in the price of the commodity they are desirous of shipping.
2354 I know full well that steam coal we get from the South Wales District is utilised enormously, and some people may say that an additional ¾d. per ton would be neither here or there; but I would point to the increase that has taken place in the coal that has been supplied from Westphalian coal fields, and I am sorry to say that an enormous amount of the coal that used to be shipped to the German ports before o troubles arose, which I am not desirous of discussing here to-night, is now taken, to a very large extent, from the Silesian coalfields. I believe it was argued in the Committee upstairs that the shipowners at the present time are enjoying peace and prosperity, but we have often heard of the seven fat years and the seven lean years, and I think anybody who knows anything about shipping at all must be conversant with the fact that from 1902 to the middle of 1912 the shipowners in many cases were not able to send their steamers from one port to another and to pay the expenses that were naturally incumbent upon them. It was not: a question of saying what profit was going to be made, but a question of finding the smallest loss that was to be incurred in sending from one port to another. Shipping is not in the miserable state it was in 1912. It has been stated in Committee that in consequence of prosperous times the shipowners can afford to pay an increase in the dues. It was during those times of prosperity that this Bill was promoted. Had it been promoted in 1911 there would not have been the smallest chance of getting it through. With the ordinary business aptitude prevalent with the promoters of these Bills, they have waited until better times, but even at the present moment the condition of the shipping trade is not as happy as it was in the autumn of last year, and the freights from Cardiff to ports in the Mediterranean are between 3s. and 4s. a ton less than they were at this time last year. The increased dues would have to be paid by the shipowners themselves, and in the ordinary course of events they have been asked to contribute towards the expenses of lighting round the coast and other matters, and they have borne their fair share of those charges.
With regard to these docks, powers have been given by which they can charge a maximum amount. In 1894 power was sought to construct the Alexandra Dock. This had been found necessary in consequence of the large increase of shipping in Cardiff and the South Wales district, and 2355 it was decided to go ahead and build another large dock, for which the necessary powers were obtained. When one goes into such matters as the construction of docks it will be readily understood that often the original estimates are wrong, but they adopt the designs which are deemed best in the general interest. It o so happened in the case of this new dock, because the estimates contemplated for the construction were exceeded by over 100 per cent. This was not entirely in consequence of the required alterations, but a difficulty was experienced with regard to sinking the dock, and the depth of the foundations had to be increased from fifty-four feet to seventy-two feet. In 1907 this dock was completed, but various anticipations in regard to it were not realised. Whether they were genuinely expected or not I am not able to say, but, at any rate, the revenue expected has not been realised. When you construct a dock you cannot expect that the full revenue will be realised from its inception, because you cannot utilise the whole of the dock from the first. Besides, one has to look to the natural expansion of trade, and this has been so regarded in the case of the Alexandra Dock, and although large sums of money have been expended upon it, the whole of the slips have not been utilised to the full extent. According to the drawings it is the intention of the Cardiff Dock to complete fourteen of these appliances, and only ten have been installed, and there are four more to be fixed.
The House will realise that the promoters could not possibly expect to be receiving the full benefit they had anticipated under these circumstances. From 1910 to 1912 various difficulties arose with regard to the loading of ships through labour troubles, which I am glad to say do not exist at the present time. It is not my intention to go into those disputes, but I wish to say 'that during the second half of 1912 I find that according to the figures the revenue was sufficient to pay a return of 3 per cent. on the money invested in the ordinary stock, the whole liabilities having already been met on the preference stock and the debenture stock. I admit that there has not been a reasonable return on the money up to the present time invested in the ordinary stock, but although the whole of the arrangements contemplated have not yet been completed, the result shows that it was possible to pay 3 per cent. on the investment. 2356 I do not say that 3 per cent. on an investment of this description is as much as one could reasonably expect, but you have to weigh against that what will be the ultimate result of the benefit that will accrue to the ordinary shareholders. I think we are justified in comparing the figures of the Taff Vale and the Barry Railways, which are able to earn from 8 per cent. to 10 per cent., and they pay a dividend to that amount, and I do not see why the same results should not be eventually forthcoming to the shareholders of the Cardiff Railway. I do not think that this House is justified at the present time in placing an additional charge of £60,000 per annum on the shipowners of this country, when it is admitted that they cannot possibly obtain anything in return. The whole of that £60,000 is going into the pockets of the shareholders of that company, to the detriment of the shipowners, without any limit as to the eventual interest that is to be obtained and paid to the ordinary shareholders. I cannot help thinking that is rather an important fact, and it is one to which I hope the House will give its most careful attention. It was stated in Committee that there was a question with regard to the increased cost of wages. I am entirely in favour of an increase in the charges that a railway company may make if it has been satisfactorily proved that increase is in consequence of the increased cost of labour. We all know full well that during the past three or four years there has been a general rise in the cost of living, and that has naturally, to a certain extent, been met by additional wages to the working classes.
I am not one of those who say that the increased cost of wages should not be recoverable from those who utilise the railways. I have, therefore, carefully gone into the question to see whether the additional cost is justified by the wages bill. I find that in 1895 the Cardiff Railway Company paid £111,000 odd in wages; in 1900, £127,000; in 1905, £136,000; in 1910, £161,000; and in 1912, £154,000. I am afraid those figures do not give much information to the House; but, when I say that the amount paid in wages per £100 of earnings was 29.4 per cent., 29.4 per cent., 32.2 per cent., 31.7 per cent., and 30.1 per cent., respectively, I think that the information will be of great assistance to the House. It will be seen that, as compared with 1895, the wages have only increased from 29.4 per £100 of earnings to 2357 30.1 per cent., and that as compared with 1905 they have actually fallen from 32.4 to 30.1 per cent. Therefore, so far as the question of any increased cost in consequence of increased wages is concerned, I do not think that the promoters of the Bill have any locus standi. It will be readily realised that if this increase is placed upon the shipowner he will not be able to recoup himself in any way whatever. In view of the enormous amount of British money that is invested in British shipping and the small revenue that has been obtained from that money over a period of years, I certainly hope that this House will not agree to any additional charges being placed upon shipowners to the possible disadvantage of the country in general. The importance of the industry has been admitted to the House. The First Lord of the Admiralty, only a few months ago, stated that he had agreed that certain steamers of the mercantile marine should be adapted as cruisers. We want to do everything in our power to increase in a reasonable manner the shipbuilding of this country. It is of the utmost importance that we should do so. It is of the utmost importance that we should remember that we have, practically speaking, to bring the whole of the foodstuffs of this country in our steamers across the seas, and when the percentage of profits over a period of years has been so small, I do hope that this House will by a large majority say that they are not prepared to agree to the increases that have been proposed in the Cardiff Railway Bill, and against which I think I am right in saying even the Chairman himself protested.
§ Mr. WALTER REA
In seconding the Resolution which has been moved by the hon. Member opposite, I recognise at once that I am taking a somewhat unusual course in asking the House to reverse the decision that has already been come to by a Committee upstairs; but, if the Motion is an unusual one, I think that it is justified in that the Bill which we are now considering is not only unusual, but almost unique. It is unique intrinsically, and I think in its Parliamentary history, for I am fortified in the action I am taking to-night by the knowledge that I have beside me ready to support this action the hon. Member who presided over the Committee which heard this case this year, and, more than that, by the support of the hon. Member who was Chairman of the Committee which rejected this measure last Session. I speak with even 2358 more confidence in that I know I am voicing the views of the vast majority of the commercial classes in South Wales. I am, I think I may say, authorised to speak for the Chamber of Commerce of Cardiff, for the colliery proprietors of South Wales, and for the Cardiff Steamship Owners' Association, who are supported in their views by ten other steamship associations representing practically all the ports in the United Kingdom. I may therefore say that opposed to this Bill is practically the whole of the commercial community which knows anything about it. I said that this Bill was intrinsically almost unique, and my reason for so saying is that so far as I can ascertain, its sole aim is not to provide extra facilities for the public at a fair charge approved by this House, but to increase the charges to be placed upon the public without giving any return in additional facilities. It is true that as the Bill stands at present there is a small concession in regard to the provision of certain sidings for the storing and sorting of coal. But these are very insignificant in comparison with the main object of the Bill They were only introduced in the Committee stage to meet the wishes of the Committee, and, therefore, I am correct in saying that the sole object with which the Bill is introduced is to place increased charges on the public, and not to provide increased facilities.
It is sought to be shown under this Bill that the Cardiff Railway Company has incurred considerable loss, which it ought to be reimbursed; but I am prepared to argue, taking everything into account, and considering the matter from a judicial standpoint, that it is not possible to show that a real loss has been sustained. We have heard from the Mover of the Motion that the Bill arises out of the construction of a new dock, but we have to go a little further back into the history of the company when we consider its present position. At the time when this dock was opened, and when it became a charge upon the company, the company was able to pay over 4 per cent. on its capital, not a very handsome return, but still one not altogether unremunerative. If these new docks are not paying a profit return on the capital, that is only the experience that is to be expected by everybody who undertakes a new enterprise. When a man builds a house, he does not expect to get rent before it is finished, and it is unreasonable for the Cardiff Railway 2359 Company to expect to receive a full revenue from the dock before it is fully occupied, and, indeed, before it is fully completed. It ought to be brought to the attention of this House that although the dock has been nominally opened a very long period it is not satisfactorily completed, and it is very far from getting the trade for which it was constructed and which the dock, when fully occupied, may be expected to have. I have not the least doubt that when once it is in full working order a proper return will be obtained upon the capital expended upon it.
Before it, is stated that a loss has been incurred, we must see that the accounts are properly kept. I have some knowledge of docks in various parts of the country, and I know that, as a rule, they do not depend entirely on dock dues. They also derive income from subsidiary industries, and rents from lands and warehouses. But in this case all these rights have been reserved. I have not a word to say against the Marquis of Bute or his ancestors, who have done a very great deal for the development of Cardiff, but we are bound to bring into the account the revenues which are received by the Marquis from this dock estate, revenues which, under ordinary circumstances, are received by the dock company. Again, there is a royalty, amounting to £42,000, payable to the Marquis of Bute, and such payment, if the docks were at Southampton, Liverpool, or Newcastle, would be brought into account in calculating the revenue and profits of the estate. It is not fair, therefore, to say that this company is making a loss, unless you take into account all the revenues which do not go into the Cardiff Company's profit and loss account. This so-called railway company, which is in reality a dock-owning company, has been ambitious, and has attempted to build a railway within the past fifteen years to connect its docks with the mines. I am told it has spent a sum of no less than £700,000 on this railway, which has not yet been brought into use. Therefore, before we consider that this company has made a loss, we ought to deduct from the capital upon which a return is expected the £700,000 invested in this railway, which, for reasons best known to the Cardiff Railway Company, has not been brought into profit earning, although some fifteen years have elapsed since it was authorised.
2360 I notice in the statement circulated in support of this Bill it is said that labour is costing more, and, therefore, the company should be entitled to additional rates. I entirely agree with the hon. Member opposite that if that were the case everyone in this House would be very willing that the consumer—the user of the dock—should bear his share of any extra wages that may have to be paid, and nobody would begrudge it. Although, undoubtedly, there is an increase in the amount of wages paid, the percentage that the wages bear to the total amount of revenue earned is a diminishing one, and, therefore, the dock company is carrying on its undertaking at a less and not a greater cost for labour. That argument consequently falls to the ground. Even if we were to admit that this company is making a loss at the present time, I would put it very strongly to the House that it is not our business to provide dividends for private or public companies, although they may have made a bad investment. There are other companies in South Wales owning docks very simliar to the Cardiff docks. They receive the same amount in dues, and yet these companies, the Taff Vale Railway Company and the Barry Railway Company, which own docks close to the Cardiff Dock estate, and are doing precisely the same kind of trade are able to make a handsome profit and pay dividends amounting to 10 per cent. per annum. If these companies can pay dividends out of the existing rates, I submit it is evident that there is mismanagement in connection with this Cardiff Company, and they should set their house in order before they ask us to authorise an increase in their charges to the public.
If it was desirable that these dues should be increased, I put it strongly that the fair and honourable course to-take would have been, when powers were asked for the construction of the new dock, for the House to be told honestly and straightforwardly that, while the company was prepared to construct the dock, they would require additional dues. But it was told nothing of the sort, and the House should know the reason why. Of course, one cannot read the minds of the promoters of a Bill. In this case the facts point very strongly to the assumption I am going to make. At the time this dock was under consideration, at any rate, before its construction, there was a rival scheme for the construction of another 2361 dock, which would have robbed this dock of a large part of its trade. The rival company were perfectly willing to construct the dock without asking for any extra dues. It is perfectly obvious, if the Cardiff Company had come to this House and said they were prepared to construct the dock, but would require to impose extra dues, this House would have given the concession not to the Cardiff Company, but to the Windsor Company, their rivals. But, as a matter of fact, the Windsor Dock scheme is dead. There is no possibility of competition, and so the Cardiff Company now come and ask Parliament to permit it to increase the dues and thereby place a burden on the community, so as to enable them to earn a dividend. Furthermore, I should like to point out that the £60,000 which it is proposed to raise by this Bill is not the limit of the amount the public will have to pay. If the Cardiff Railway Company are to be allowed to increase the dues, it is only to be supposed that their neighbours the Taff Vale Railway Company, the Barry Railway Company, and the Newport Docks Company will demand that they too shall be allowed to raise their dues, and I do not see how this House, in justice, could refuse that demand, although the companies are making a profit at the present time, and are not at the moment asking for the increase. It is admitted that the money has been spent and somebody has to bear the loss. Someone has to pay, and this Bill is an attempt to make the community and the shipowner pay. I am aware it is a popular thing to make the shipowner pay at the present time, because, admittedly, he has had a rather good time lately. After all, good times come and go. I regret to say that for the shipowners the good times are passing away much too rapidly. When the good times have passed away, these increased dues will still remain. There is no sliding scale by which these dues are to be reduced in bad times, and, from our experience of the Cardiff Railway 'Company, we may confidently assume that once this Bill has been passed the dues that will be charged will be the maximum dues and nothing less.
It is surely not a fair thing that because one section of the community, after ten lean years, has had one or two good ones that it should be asked to bear somebody else's loss. There is more rough justice in Robin Hood than one would expect from this House, at least. Even if it 2362 should be stated that the shipowners and the community to whom the shipowners will endeavour to pass on this charge are to pay a part of this cost, when we look into the details and find that the increased dues mean an additional 37½ per cent. on a considerable portion of the trade, I submit that is not a fair proposal to bring before the House. It may be asked, "How is this Company to make ends meet?" It is suggested that it will be unable to raise further capital unless we pass this Bill. But this Bill does not propose to give the company powers to raise further capital. If revenue is required for this company, I would venture in all earnestness to suggest to them that they should drop these expensive Parliamentary fights in which they and everybody else in South Wales have been so prone to indulge during the last few years, and that they should devote the time, energy and money they have wasted in the Committee Rooms upstairs to developing their estate and looking after their own business. In fact, I would suggest they should cease to rely on spoon-feeding by Parliament and attend to their own business. I am aware that in this House it is sound practice to trust to Committees upstairs and to be very slow to reverse any decision arrived at by them, particularly when the decision has been arrived at after hearing evidence upon a. great deal of detail which cannot properly be placed before the House. The point I submit is that this is not a question to be judged on minute details of evidence, but that it raises a broad new principle, in that this Bill asks statutory authority to increase charges upon the public merely because the promoters have failed to invest their money with common prudence. This House does not exist to guarantee dividends, but is here to safeguard the interests of the public, and in this case, at any rate, it is their sole protector. It is in the interests of the public that I ask the House to refuse to sanction what I cannot help considering in this case is an imposition upon them.
§ 9.0 P.M.
§ Mr. GOLDSTONE
The hon. Members who have moved and seconded the rejection of this Bill have spoken from a point of view somewhat different from that I take up. I oppose tins Bill from the point of view of the working community at Cardiff. That community is represented by the Trades Council of Cardiff, which, by a very considerable majority—that so far as the executive committee of the 2363 council is concerned is something like thirteen to one—is strongly opposed to this Bill being proceeded with. The council takes the view that if the powers which are suggested are given to the company the effect may very well be to remove some of the trade which at present comes to Cardiff to other ports on the Bristol Channel. The point has been made and is worthy of reiteration that the dues charged at Penarth, Barry, and Newport on this channel are identical with those charged at Cardiff. It is evident, if Cardiff increases its rates, that Newport, which is a competitor in the coal-exporting industry, may very well annex the business which at present goes to Cardiff. That will entail upon a considerable portion of the working community of Cardiff the necessity of transferring themselves, and possibly their families, to another sphere of industry—if not their families at least themselves, with a rise in their outgoings which at present they are not called upon to meet. They would of necessity have to travel to Newport and back, even if they did not remove their families to Newport. I can well conceive that we should have a great disturbance in that South Wales area, first, because of the removal of the business to Newport, and then there would be a sort of battledore and shuttlecock game as between all the ports of the channel, each being in competition with the other to get the maximum rates from the ship-owning community. I am not so much concerned with the shipowning community as I am with the people they employ. If the shipowners are to be called upon to meet considerable increases in dues charged by the owners of docks, there will of necessity be very much less with which to pay their seamen and firemen. From the point of view of the seamen and firemen their appeals to their employers for increased wages will pass unheard or, at least, unnoticed, if the dues are increased and the shipping community have to meet charges which at present are not placed upon them. The working people of Cardiff as represented by their trades council, which is entitled to speak for several thousands of the working men and women in that place, feel that even if the trade does not pass from their town it will possibly result in the passing on of the increased dues to the working classes.
What will, of course, happen will be that those who have to meet the increased dues 2364 will charge more for their commodities. It' will not only be the £60,000 which is anticipated, which is the problematical figure, but supposing we assume that the trade does not go and that this dock company—it is a dock company passing under the name of a railway company—will first of all take the £60,000 it estimates it will receive, and those who meet it will pass that £60,000 on to some of the commodities. We know from experience that that passing on of amounts which have been collected at the source tends to very largely increase the cost of the commodities when they are retailed. The ultimate result will undoubtedly be that the cost of commodities as sold in the retail shops of Cardiff and other towns which are served by the Cardiff Docks will be increased and the consumer will undoubtedly pay. Let us see for whose benefit. So far as I understand the position, the ordinary stock of this Cardiff Dock Company is in the hands of two per-.sons, and, in the main, in the hands of one person. The whole of this £60,000 will go to augment the income of a nobleman who is at present passably rich.
It seems to me that the case which is made out on behalf of this company is not sufficiently good to warrant the £00,000 which, it is anticipated, will go into the pockets of these shareholders so limited in number. The disquieting aspect of the question is that the Committee upstairs did not seem able to get at the correct figures as to the income from the subsidiary concerns associated with this new venture, and it may very well be that by a clever process of bookkeeping these new concerns may only be paying 1½ per cent., but there may be figures not disclosed to the Committee, which we have not been able to reach, which may show on the subsidiary concerns a very high percentage of profits, and probably that is the case. What ought to be done, it seems to me, is to lay the facts and figures clearly before the House so that we may know without question what the dividends of this concern are if you lump the various capital accounts together, and take the whole as one complete concern, instead of by a process of differentiation and clever bookkeeping, showing a 1½ per cent. return on this particular dock concerned, while not disclosing the larger profit which is made on the subsidiary account. It would appear to me, therefore, that on that ground, because the House has not been taken fully into the 2365 confidence of those who are promoting this Bill, there is no good reason why we should give our assent to it, and, on behalf of the working community of Cardiff I oppose the Bill.
May I adduce an additional reason. It is urged on behalf of the promoters that railway companies generally, under the conciliation scheme, recently adopted by this House in the settlement of the strike of two years ago, with the exception of this particular company, are being empowered to pass on their charges for increased wages to the community, and it is urged on behalf of the promoters of this Bill that they are the exception in this matter and are not allowed the power to pass on the increased amounts they have spent in wages to the community. But this is not a railway company primarily. It has a length of rail which it does not work, I understand. Primarily, it is a dock company. In the second place, it has not been able to show any rise in wages of any considerable amount which would warrant the charges being increased as it is now proposed they shall be increased, and in fact under this Bill we are just reversing the process which a railway company ordinarily, under the conciliation scheme, is expected to follow. Under that scheme a railway company which proposes to increase its rates must show clearly that it has first expended in wages an amount which warrants its getting powers to increase its charges. We are just having the exact reverse in this case, and we are having a suggestion of increased charges in order possibly that there may be some slight increase in wages. I believe it is urged that the workers who are the employés of this concern may expect some slight addition to their wages if this Bill is allowed to go through. In my view that is the wrong way to begin a process of that kind. The increase is problematical, and I doubt whether, in view of the past experience of the employés of this company, any considerable proportion of that £60,000 which is expected in additional revenue will be expended in wages. But I object to the reversal of the process which the ordinary railway company has been compelled to follow, that of showing an increase in wages before it secures an increase in rates. Now this company asks for an increase in rates as an excuse for possibly, but with no guarantee, increasing the wages of their employés to some small extent. I join with those who have asked 2366 the House to reject the Bill, speaking, I believe, on behalf of a majority of my colleagues on these benches.
§ Mr. DENISON-PENDER
I appeal to the House to treat me rather gently, because I happen to be in the rather unenviable position of addressing the House for the first time. I certainly should not have done so on a subject that is so controversial and so complicated as this Cardiff Railway Bill had I not happened to, be a Member of the Committee which considered it. I am rather glad my first remarks in this House should be devoted to a Bill which, as the very names which are down opposing it show very clearly, is by no means a party question. The Cardiff Railway Company, I might almost say, have been forced to bring the Bill to the House to amend the rates which were authorised as far back as 1865. Since those rates were authorised very great changes have come over the conditions that prevailed at these docks. This, I think, puts in very few words the reason why this Bill is before us to-night, as the change in these conditions has very naturally favoured the coal owners, the freighters, and the shipowners, but the owners of these docks have not shared in the general rise in prosperity. Let us take, in the first place, the actual cost of construction of to-day, and compare it with the cost of those days gone by. In 1865 the price of the West and East Docks, at the time they were constructed, was £37, roughly, to the 100 ft. of quay space. The next docks to be constructed showed a very big increase—in fact, the figure reached was £104 per 100 feet. Then we have the final case of the Queen Alexandra Dock, and there they rose to £194 per 100 feet. These enormous increases have been rendered necessary by the very big increase in the size of the ships. The following figures will show the very big rise in the tonnage of these ships since these first powers were authorised. In 1875 the biggest ship that came into those docks was not bigger than 3,000 tons. In 1912 they got to the figure of 16,000 or 17,000, and that is immensely to the advantage of the coal owners, shipowners and traders, but, again, it puts the dock company to a very great expense. I cannot but help seeing that they are quite right in taming to the House and asking for an amended rate according to these different conditions. Besides the original outlay and the very big expense for building these new docks, 2367 because of the enormous depth of water required, and the big quay walls which have to be built, there is the very much higher cost of maintaining these big docks.
Having finished with the construction, the troubles of the Cardiff company have only just begun. With bigger ships it means that you have got to hoist your coal to very much greater heights, and whereas in the old days that did not entail very big expenditure to the company, a few years after they had to go to a height of 50 feet, and recently the height is 50 or 60 feet. Everyone knows that if you wish to get an extra knot out of a ship's steaming it means that every extra bit of speed requires so much greater consumption of coal, and a very big increase in the cost. It is exactly the same in this case, where you have to lift to these greater heights. Every little bit tells, and increases the cost to the dock companies. That has been rendered necessary. But I should like to point out that that has all been for the extra convenience of the shipowners. An hon. Member in the course of his speech to-night alluded to the fact that if these new rates were imposed, the people of Cardiff were afraid that the trade would go from that port. All I can say is that the Lord Mayor of Cardiff came before the Committee and gave evidence in support of this Bill. Can you conceive it possible that a man in the position of Lord Mayor of Cardiff would come before the Committee and give evidence in support of the Bill, if he thought for a moment that the trade would leave the city with which he is connected? I do not intend to go very deeply into the details of the evidence given before the Committee, but I should like to refer to one other remark which was made by the hon. Member with regard to the principle at stake in this Bill. I submit that there is no principle of any sort or kind at stake in this Bill. That there is no precedent I grant, but I think the objection to this Bill of a great many people was got over—I mean the view that the House has never granted powers to any concern which does not grant special favours in return to the public. I know that the Committee intended that the objection should be removed by their imposing sonic very onerous conditions on the Cardiff Company. I may say that it was some little time before that company accepted the 2368 conditions imposed, but eventually they did, and the Committee passed this Bill which the House is asked to consider tonight. I should like to add that I wish this task had been undertaken by a Member who has more knowledge of the subject, and who could have clone more justice to it than myself, but I can only say that the reasons which induced me to give my vote upstairs in support of the Bill will lead me to support it in the Lobby to-night.
§ Mr. R. THOMPSON
I should like to express my sympathy with the promoters of this Bill. I have been associated with the Harbour and Docks Board of the City of Belfast for a good many years, and I have been for a number of years chairman of that board. I can testify to the enormously increased expenditure that has been entailed during late years owing to the greatly increased size of ships using the ports. I think it was in 1865 that the scale of charges at Cardiff was regulated by this House. Since then the conditions have very much changed, and I am greatly mistaken if hon. Members on both sides of the House do not recognise that change. We, in Belfast during the past few years, have expended over £500,000 in improving and extending our docks. I can very well understand the enormous expenditure that has been entailed in connection with the docks at Cardiff. Two years ago I had the honour to be appointed an arbitrator in a question that arose between the Docks Board at Cardiff and their employés. The hon. Member for the Blackfriars Division (Mr. Barnes) was associated with me in that arbitration. We gave a very substantial advance to the employés, and I am pleased to say that the Cardiff Dock authorities, whom I represented on the occasion, met the award without a murmur, and paid the increase in a manly way. The employés were most thoroughly satisfied with the decision arrived at. I understand that the conditions are so different; now from what they were in 1873, that the revenue of the Cardiff docks then would show a profit of £61,000 more than the same tonnage in 1912, with absolutely the same rates, charges, and tonnage. I think that is a very strong argument in favour of some increase in the dues of the Cardiff docks.
I understand that a Committee of this House sat for nineteen days investigating the evidence brought before them, and voted in favour of this Bill going through the House by a majority of three to one. 2369 The House of Lords also examined the evidence in favour of the Bill for seven days, arid ultimately decided in favour of it. An hon. Member has said that the Lord Mayor of Cardiff had given evidence, but the city of Cardiff has gone further. The corporation of Cardiff have passed, I think, a unanimous vote. [HON. MEMBERS: "No."] A vote of twenty to seven. [HON. MEMBERS: "Fourteen."] At all events, a vote in favour of this Bill. The Bill provides an advance of only ¾d. in the £ on tonnage dues, and seven-sixteenths of a penny on dock dues. These are very small charges considering how the position has changed since 1865. Further, I understand that the Marquis of Bute, who I believe is the principal owner, has borrowed a large sum of money which was spent on these docks, for which he pays 4 per cent., and on which up to the present he has been receiving less than 1 per cent return. I do not think that anyone can accuse the Marquis of Bute of unfairness in trying to get this remedied. I appeal to hon. Members opposite to support this Bill, because it will be in favour of the workmen of Cardiff. The dock authorities have shown in the past that they are prepared to pay good wages to their workmen, and I have a promise from the same authorities that if this Bill passes so as to put them in a better position with regard to finance, they will give a still further advance.
§ Mr. SOAMES
I am in a somewhat unusual position. In the first place, it is unreasonable for me to ask the House to reverse the decision of a Committee given upstairs, but in this particular case this decision, in my opinion, involves a very considerable departure from the settled practice of Parliament, and, therefore, I think it a very exceptional case. One other unusual feature about the decision is that, unfortunately, I am not in accordance with other members of the Committee, and for that reason I feel it my duty to give the House my reasons for differing from them. The duty of a Private Bill Committee upstairs, which has a scheme brought before it, is to constitute itself the guardian of the interests of the public, and, so far as I know, it has invariably been the practice of Parliament, when a corporation or a company, or a public utility, or any other body has come before Parliament and asked for compulsory power for the purchase of land or the, charging of rates, that they do so because they are able to 2370 show that they are providing better facilities or benefits for the public. It is because this Bill does not conform to that general principle that I have not found myself able to vote for the Preamble. This Bill only enables the undertakers to raise their charges. It simply asks for that power and for nothing else, and it does so on the plea that the capital invested in the company has not earned a sufficient dividend on the ordinary shares. In my opinion it is the duty of the Private Bill Committee to see in all these cases that there is a substantial quid pro quo, and inasmuch as there is no quid pro quo whatever—it is true that there was a small duty imposed on the railway by the Committee, but that was not a real quid pro quo——I do not feel myself able to support the Bill. The principle appears to me to be a dangerous one. We might have any railway company, train company, water company, or any other public company coming to the House and applying for leave to increase their charges because they are not earning what they consider a. sufficient dividend.
In my opinion it is not the duty of Parliament to see that persons who venture their money in these undertakings receive sufficent dividends. In any case it appears to me that this application is premature for the reason that the Queen Alexandra Dock is not working nearly up to its full capacity, and until that dock came into existence, the company was earning a very reasonable dividend. It is only since upwards of £2,000,000 were spent on the new dock that the dividends on the ordinary shares have come down. We have no proof that when the dock is earning to its full capacity and when the railway, representing a dead sum of £750,000, is also brought into work, that the company will not again pay a decent dividend. I have been somewhat confirmed in that idea that it is capable of earning a good dividend by the fact that I have seen in the papers since the decision of the Committee was given, in fact, I think it was the very next morning, that the company have announced a dividend for the first half of this year of 1 per cent more than for the first half of last year. This Bill was considered last year by a Committee of the House of Commons, of four Members, who unanimously rejected it. This year it has been considered by another Committee of four Members. Three were in favour of it and one against it. Therefore, of the eight Members of the 2371 House of Commons who have considered this Bill, five were against it, and three in favour of it. Therefore, in this particular case, there are special reasons for this House to reconsider the decision of the Committee upstairs; but the principal reason to my mind is that the principle which is admitted by this Bill is a new one in the practice of Parliament, and one which to my mind is quite unsound, and would lead to endless trouble in the future.
Mr. CLEMENT EDWARDS
I rise to support the Motion for the rejection of this Bill. I do so as representative of a great area in Glamorganshire, which will, in view of those able to judge, be affected very seriously by the Bill if it becomes an Act of Parliament. I also desire to say certain things with regard to what I may call the merits of this measure. Within the memory of the oldest Member of this House there has not been a more impudent attempt to seek legislation which was unjustifiable. The hon. Member who made such an admirable maiden speech to-night spoke of the difficulties of the company by reason of the large price that had to be paid for the railway. There was some allusion made by the hon. Member for Belfast (Mr. Thompson) to the fact that there has been a serious outlay in other directions, but from the beginning to the end the whole thing is the purely personal affair of the Marquess of Bute. To begin with, the ordinary shareholder is only a synonym for the Marquess of Bute, and it applies to one individual who, I understand, owns a single share. The person to whom such a large price per hundred feet is to be paid for the land of this company is the Marquess of Bute. The person, by reason of whom this company is so seriously handicapped because of royalty to the amount of £42,000 having to be paid, is the Marquess of Bute. We have heard from the hon. Member for Scarborough that the dock estate which he sold is the element of the property which would—when included within the four corners of the dock estate—in every other part of the country, by reason of subsidiary industries add to the revenue of the Dock Company, and the owner of these choice bits of land is the Marquess of Bute. If a reasonable price had been charged by the Marquess of Bute as the owner of the land, if he had not charged £42,000 royalty in respect of the approaches to the dock, if he had sold the 2372 estate to this practically one-man company concern, letting in the whole of these choice bits of property, then, instead of this company coming to Parliament and appealing to us in forma pauperis, they would have been able to come here and show that they were earning a substantial dividend.
It has been suggested that these freights, these dock dues, those shipping rates, were all fixed as far back at 1865. That is perfectly true, but in that day, as compared with the present day, there was a comparatively limited traffic, and what is now called the Cardiff railway was purely a dock concern. So long as it was in that position there was a substantial dividend earned on the capital outlay at the rates fixed in 1865. What is the position now? The position is that there has been super-imposed upon the old capital a large capital for what is truly the Cardiff railway. In addition to that there has been super-imposed a large capital for an additional dock which is not yet developed, beyond probably less than one-half of its actual capacity. What is the position in regard to this railway? It has been in a large part constructed over a number of years. It only requires a very little more work to complete the original scheme with regard to this railway by connecting it up with other railways in my constituency, and, if that railway were completed according to the original scheme, it would be earning a substantial dividend. But there it lies, unused and unoccupied, and yet the capital spent in its construction is being included in the total capital of this so-called Cardiff Railway Company, and the earnings from the dock dues are not only spread over what I call the purely dock capital, but they are spread over the purely dock capital, plus the capital of this railway, which is not yet being used. With that fact brought to the notice of this House it is impossible for this House to seriously entertain such a monstrous suggestion as that this Bill should become law.
But there is another fact, a fact which came up three or four years ago, and of which I think it is well that the House should be reminded. As every hon. Member is aware, according to the Trustees Investments Act of 1893, trustees cannot legally invest trust money in preferential stock of a railway company unless that railway company's ordinary stock has earned 3 per cent. over a period of ten years. Four years ago an attempt 2373 was made to pass through this House a measure for the fusion of this Cardiff Railway Company with the Rhymney Railway Company, and it was then represented to the House that the ordinary stock of the Cardiff Railway Company, was earning a dividend of 3 per cent. That had to be, and was, carefully investigated, and it was discovered that the whole of the ordinary shares of the Cardiff Railway Company, with the exception of one single share, were owned by the Marquess of Bute. The ordinary share capital was £1,000,000, and the Marquess of Bute handed out of his private account to the secretary of the company £30,000, which the secretary handed back after the farce of the meeting, to Lord Bute as dividend at the rate of 3 per cent, on the ordinary stock, and the preferential stock in this company was advertised to the world as a stock in which trustees could easily invest their money. It was, I submit, very largely that fact, in connection with this concern, that caused the House to reject contemptuously the attempt that was then made to secure a Bill to fuse this company with the other company.
But above and beyond all there is this perfectly amazing proposition: Let us assume that there had not been all this juggling and all this "jiggery-pokery," and that there had not been all this time all this dealing with the Marquis of Bute in so many aliases, and that the whole thing had been genuine and a perfectly properly conducted commercial concern, and let us then assume that they had come to the House with the proposition now before it, there is not, I venture to say in Parliament, not at all events in the modern Parliamentary history, not since the days the railway era began, a single precedent to be found for this simple and naked proposition, that because a concern which has obtained a franchise from Parliament is not earning a dividend, that, therefore, its rates and dues should be increased to enable it to earn a dividend. Take the modern case of the Great Central, and of the difficulties in the old days of the Great Eastern Railway Company, and take the case of the Chatham Railway Company before the fusion with the London and South-Eastern Company, and, apart altogether from those cases, take the hundreds of cases where railway companies have been constructed on a Parliamentary franchise, and have been unable to earn a dividend. Yet nobody has ever 2374 thought that they ought to come to Parliament and Parliament has never sanctioned an attempt on the part of a company of any sort or kind that has taken a franchise from Parliament that that franchise should be enlarged simply and solely for the purpose of enabling them to appear on the profitable side instead of on the losing side. I do ask in the particular circumstances of this case that the House will not sanction the introduction of this new and perfectly amazing principle. This is a Bill, I repeat, for no other purpose except for the endowment in perpetuity of Lord Bute, and if there were no other reason than that—
§ Sir F. BANBURY
The hon. and learned Gentleman has just made the statement that Parliament has never altered any dock dues. How about the present Government, which altered the dock dues when the Port of London Authority was constituted
Mr. C. EDWARDS
Perhaps I have not made my meaning clear. I have not suggested that Parliament has not altered, or I did not mean to suggest, that Parliament has not sanctioned the alteration of dock dues. It has sanctioned the alteration of dock dues, and it has sanctioned increases in dock dues and alterations in railway rates and charges, and increases in railway rates and charges, but it has never done either of those things simply and solely for the purpose of enabling either a dock company or a railway company to earn a dividend, but it has been invariably done in return for some special benefit which was given for the community or for some section of the community. The hon. Baronet, though he has made many novel proposals, and many surprising proposals, has never yet asked this House, in the interests of any railway company, that it should grant an increase in railway rates so as to enable that railway company to obtain a dividend. I am quite sure he knows of no such precedent, with his vast knowledge of precedents, in regard to railway cases in Parliament. In the absence of any such precedent, I again express the profound hope, especially in view of the particular circumstances, many of which are so unpleasant in connection with this case, that the House will reject this Bill.
§ Lord EDMUND TALBOT
I recognise the position which I happen to occupy and my connection with this company is rather peculiar, and on that account I do not 2375 intend either to discuss the merits of this Bill, or to record a vote upon it. I do not think I should have intervened in this Debate at all had it not been for the remarks which have been made by the last speaker and by one or two former speakers, with reference to the position of Lord Bute, and I think the House ought to understand that since Lord Bute succeeded to the estate, he has put back in the shape of capital, not only every penny that he has earned, as the owner of the shares of this company, but also no less a sum than more than half a million of his own money in addition. I think it is only fair that the House, after the attacks that have been made upon him, should realise that fact. As regards the merits of the Bill, in my position I do not propose to discuss them.
I only had this afternoon sent to me by post the cases of the two sides, and I had not intended to intervene in this Debate. I am not interested, as a shipowner, or a colliery proprietor, or a trader. I have no interest in docks of any kind except a small sum of money on loan at 4 per cent, to a dock in the North of England, the name of which I forget. There is very great opposition to this Bill, entirely by shipowners, freighters, colliery proprietors, and traders, and the people who petitioned against the Bill include chambers of commerce, colliery proprietors, a steamship association, and a traders council. How, I ask, can this House do justice to a private Bill of this kind in a Debate of this character surely a Committee of this House is a trusted tribunal, and the Committee has sat for nineteen days, and it is not the first Committee that sat on this Bill, but the second. Therefore the evidence was well thrashed out, and it was well known at the second inquiry what had transpired at the first, and instead of that being an argument against the Bill being carried, as mentioned by the Chairman just now, it should be an argument in its favour. A Committee of the House of Lords also sat for seven days, and under those circumstances, if Committees of this House are to be trusted at all in these matters, there must be an overwhelming case for a rejection of their decision. What is that overwhelming case? A very forcible speech has just been made by the hon. Member for Glamorgan (Mr. C. Edwards), and it has always been my experience through a long life that the 2376 stronger and more violent the language of the charges, the weaker the case. It is entirely based upon three things. The first is that the person concerned is a marquess. Give a dog a bad name and you may as well hang him at once, and because it is a marquess the Bill is to be rejected. The whole of the, hon. Member's speech was based upon the fact that all these things were done by and all this money belonged to the Marquess of Bute. Suppose it had been Mr. Jones, he would not have put it in that way at all.
Mr. C. EDWARDS
The' hon. Member is really misrepresenting what I said. The case I made with regard to the Marquess of Bute was that he was one of the persons to whom this company owed its difficulties by reason of the enormous price that had to be paid for land and royalties, and that he was also the sole ordinary shareholder, with the exception of one, who stood to reap the entire benefit under the Bill.
I quite understand that. I did not intend to misrepresent, nor do I think I have misrepresented the hon. Member. The hon. Member accused the Noble Marquess of being guilty of what was tantamount to fraud in pretending to pay a 3 per cent. dividend, in order that the preference shares might become a trustee investment. A charge like that and the statements as to ownership which the hon. Member has made are matters that could very fairly be put before the Committee, because they could there be cross-examined upon and their accuracy ascertained. Here nothing of the kind can take place. We are obliged to take every statement as Gospel; we have no means whatever of testing its accuracy. The hon. Member used in connection with the Noble Marquess such words as "jugglery" and—
And "jiggery pokery." That was the kind of argument on which he based his opposition to the Bill. The only other solid argument was that if the railway had been built in a different way the £700,000 invested in the railway would be paying a dividend now.
Mr. C. EDWARDS
The hon. Member has not followed my argument. I did not suggest that the railway should have been built in any different way. What, I did suggest was that you have no right to 2377 spread over the capital of a railway which is not used and then come to Parliament and represent that you are not earning a dividend on the capital.
§ 10.0 P.M.
I know the hon. Member said that, but he also said that if the railway had been built in a certain way it would be earning a substantial dividend now—if it was a longer railway. That is a statement which ought not to be made in this House, as it cannot be investigated and cross-examined upon as it could in Committee. Every argument which has been used to-night was put before the Committee and fully investigated with the assistance of learned counsel, who left no stone unturned to get at the truth for their respective clients. The Committee decided by three to one. We have the Chairman of the Committee stating tonight that there is a great question of principle for us to decide for the first time, because in every previous Bill there was a quid pro quo—the man who got something had to pay for it. That very often happens. But in this case it was not a question of providing fresh facilities for the public. As I understand, the facilities had already been provided, but circumstances had since arisen so that the company was put in an unfair position and was unable to Work the docks except at a loss. If it be true that the rates were fixed in 1865, nearly fifty years ago, and that conditions have changed in the way set out in the company's case, namely that the alterations in the construction of vessels and the applications of the rule for ascertaining their registered tonnage on which the dock dues are calculated have resulted in a loss to the dock owners on account of modern vessels carrying a bigger amount of cargo in proportion to their registered tonnage than was formerly the case, and that the amount of dues they would have had for vessels carrying a similar tonnage in 1912 to what they did in 1873 represents a difference of £61,000, so that whilst the dock people are providing these facilities for the public they are unable to work them except at a loss. it seems to me that a primâ facie case was made out before the Committee in favour of some relief being given to the dock company. The fact that the Corporation of Cardiff is in favour of the Bill carries great weight with me, 'because, if there was any danger of the trade of the town being injured, it would be the duty of the Corporation to watch the Bill carefully. They would 2378 consider its provisions, and oppose or support it according to the circumstances.
I appeal to the House to do justice in this case, in spite of the fact that the gentleman concerned is a Noble Marquess. I am rather surprised that a Member of the Labour party should have scoffed at the idea that wages would be raised. He seems to consider that that would be no advantage to the working men of Cardiff. How can you expect wages to be raised if the company is working practically at a loss'? One o hon. Member stated that there was an actual increase in the amount of wages paid since 1895. There was an attempt to discount that statement by saying that the percentage had fallen. It does not at all follow because the percentage has fallen that wages have been lowered. It. depends upon the number of men employed. One hon. Member—I think it was the hon. Member for Glamorgan—in dealing with the statement in the promoters case that it was proved in evidence before the Committees of both Houses that the return upon the ordinary capital of the company was under 1 per cent. and that it was impossible for the company to raise further capital, said that was due to the mismanagement of the company. That is just one of those questions which the Committee had to inquire into, and they came to an entirely different conclusion. What does the hon. Member who made that statement. know of the conditions under which the company is worked? What right has he to get up and say that the company is mismanaged? What right has the hon. Member for Glamorgan to say that the railway would pay a dividend if something which in his opinion ought to be done was done? It seems to me that there is a danger of great injustice being done in this case. I do hope the House will support the Committee upon the general principles of justice. I was not prepared to speak on this Bill one way or another. It is my sense of justice alone that made me rise to do justice to the promoters of this Bill, although it may practically be the Marquess of Bute.
§ Sir LUKE WHITE
I should not have intervened in this Debate except for the exceptional circumstances under which this measure is brought before the House. I has been mentioned that a Bill similar to this passed its Second Reading in the House last Session and was sent upstairs to Committee. The Committee, of which 2379 I was Chairman, considered the measure for a great number of days. They went through the whole of the evidence, and we were unanimous in rejecting the measure. We rejected the measure because we came to the conclusion that whatever alterations had been made in regard to the Cardiff Railway and its docks, that the time had not arrived when the docks, and the Alexandra Dock in particular, had not been fully equipped. We found that three-quarters of a million of money had been expended upon the railway, and that railway was not used, was left derelict, doing nothing, and earning no interest. We came to the conclusion that we were bound to reject the Bill. If we had passed the measure we should have passed a far different measure to that which is now before the House. In any scheme which hereafter may come before Parliament we shall have to make out a condition that there must be a sliding scale in any alterations of
§ dues. There must also be many other considerations which shall be taken into account. I say to the promoters of this Bill, who to-night say to the House of Commons: "A majority of the Committee have passed this measure upstairs, therefore it ought to be passed through the House of Commons," that you were not satisfied with the unanimous decision of the Committee last year which came to the conclusion that the Bill should be rejected. For myself, I am bound to support those who are opposing this measure, and I trust that the House of Commons will reject it.
§ Question put accordingly, "That the word 'now' stand part of the Question."
§ The House divided: Ayes, 76; Noes, 159.2381
|Division No. 275.]
|Agg-Gardner, James Tynte
|Guinness, Hon. Rupert (Essex, S.E.)
|Phillips, John (Longford, S.)
|Baird, John Lawrence
|Guinness, Hon. W. E. (Bury S. Edmunds)
|Pollock, Ernest Muray
|Baker, Harold T. (Accrington)
|Gwynne, R. S. (Sussex, Eastbourne)
|Pretyman, Ernest George
|Bathurst, Charles (Wilts, Wilton)
|Hamilton, C. G. C. (Ches., Altrincham)
|Pryce-Jones, Colonel E.
|Beach, Hon. Michael Hugh Hicks
|Harris, Henry Percy
|Raphael, Sir Herbert Henry
|Boyle, William (Norfolk, Mid)
|Henderson, Major H. (Berks, Abingdon)
|Rawlinson, John Frederick Peel
|Henderson, Sir A. (St. Geo., Han. Sq.)
|Roberts, Sir J. H. (Denbighs)
|Bridgeman, William Clive
|Henderson. John M. (Aberdeen, W.)
|Campion, W. R.
|Herbert, Hon. A. (Somerset, S.)
|Salter, Arthur Clavell
|Hewins, William Albert Samuel
|Samuel, Samuel (Wandsworth)
|Cecil, Lord Hugh (Oxford University)
|Hibbert, Sir Henry F.
|Sanders, Robert Arthur
|Cecil, Lord R. (Herts, Hitchin)
|Hope, James Fitzalan (Sheffield)
|Smyth, Thomas F. (Leitrim, S.)
|Clive, Captain Percy Archer
|Howard, Hon. Geoffrey
|Stanley, Hon. G. F. (Preston)
|Jones. Rt. Hon. Sir D. Brynmor (Swansea)
|Cotton, William Francis
|Lloyd, George Butler (Shrewsbury)
|Sykes, Sir Mark (Hull, Central)
|Davies, Sir W. Howell (Bristol, S.)
|Lyell, Charles Henry
|Terrell, George (Wilts, N.W.)
|Thomas, James Henry
|Denniss, E. R. B.
|Thompson, Robert (Belfast, North)
|Eyres-Monsell, Bolton M.
|Meehan, Francis E. (Leitrim, N.)
|Wheler, Granville C. H.
|Mills, Hon. Charles Thomas
|White, Patrick (Meath, North)
|Munro-Ferguson, Rt. Hon. R. C.
|Williams, John (Glamorgan)
|Fisher, Rt. Hon. W. Hayes
|Fitzroy, Hon. Edward A.
|Yate, Colonel C. E.
|Fletcher, John Samuel
|Gilmour, Captain John
|O'Shaughnessy, P. J.
|TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—Mr. Denison-Pender and Sir F. Banbury.
|Grant, J. A.
|Abraham, William (Dublin, Harbour)
|Bryce. John Annan
|Acland, Francis Dyke
|Burke. E. Haviland-
|Buxton, Noel (Norfolk, North)
|Duffy, William J.
|Byles, Sir William Pollard
|Duncan, C. (Barrow-in-Furness)
|Allen, Rt. Hon. Charles P. (Stroud)
|Carr-Gomm, H. W.
|Edwards, Clement (Glamorgan, E.)
|Cawley, Sir Frederick (Prestwich)
|Esmonde, Dr. John (Tipperary, N.)
|Balfour, Sir Robert (Lanark)
|Chancellor, Henry George
|Esmonde. Sir Thomas (Wexford, N.)
|Barlow, Sir John Emmott (Somerset)
|Clancy, John Joseph
|Essex, Sir Richard Walter
|Barlow, Montague (Salford, South)
|Condon, Thomas Joseph
|Ferens, Rt. Hon. Thomas Robinson
|Beauchamp, Sir Edward
|Cory, Sir Clifford John
|Benn, W. W. (T. Hamlets, St. George)
|Craig, Herbert J. (Tynemouth)
|Flavin, Michael Joseph
|Bethell, Sir J. H.
|Gill, A. H.
|Gladstone. W. G. C.
|Davies, David (Montgomery Co.)
|Boland, John Pius
|Davies, Timothy (Lincs., Louth)
|Greig, Colonel J. W.
|Booth, Frederick Handel
|De Forest, Baron
|Guest, Major Hon. C. H. C. (Pembroke)
|Bowerman, Charles W.
|Guest, Hon. Frederick E. (Dorset, E.)
|Gulland, John William
|Redmond, William (Clare, E.)
|Gwynn, Stephen Lucius (Galway)
|M'Callum, Sir John M.
|Redmond, William Archer (Tyrone, E.)
|Markham, Sir Arthur Basil
|Richardson, Albion (Peckham)
|Hall, F. (Yorks, Normanton)
|Marshall, Arthur Harold
|Roberts, Charles H. (Lincoln)
|Harcourt, Robert V. (Montrose)
|Meehan, Patrick J. (Queen's Co., Leix)
|Roberts, George H. (Norwich)
|Hardie, J. Keir
|Harmsworth, R. L. (Caithness-shire)
|Money, L. G. Chiozza
|Roche, Augustine (Louth)
|Harvey, T. E. (Leeds, West)
|Mooney, John J.
|Roe, Sir Thomas
|Hayden, John Patrick
|Morgan, George Hay
|Rutherford, Watson (L'pool, W. Derby)
|Scott, A. MacCallum (Glas., Bridgeton)
|Hemmerde, Edward George
|Morton, Alpheus Cleophas
|Henry, Sir Charles
|Smith, Albert (Lancs., Clitheroe)
|Higham, John Sharp
|Soames, Arthur Wellesley
|Hogg, David C.
|Norton, Captain Cecil W.
|Strauss, Edward A. (Southwark, West)
|Hogge, James Myles
|Sutton, John E.
|Holmes, Daniel Turner
|O'Brien, Patrick (Kilkenny)
|Taylor, Thomas (Bolton)
|O'Connor, John (Kildare, N.)
|Thorne, G. R. (Wolverhampton)
|Hughes, Spencer Leigh
|O'Connor, T. P. (Liverpool)
|Thorne, William (West Ham)
|John, Edward Thomas
|Toulmin, Sir George
|Jones, William S. Glyn- (Stepney)
|O'Kelly, Edward P. (Wicklow, W.)
|Walsh, Stephen (Lancs., Ince)
|Jowett, Frederick William
|Ward, John (Stoke-upon-Trent)
|O'Neill, Dr. Charles (Armagh, S.)
|O'Shee, James John
|Warner, Sir Thomas Courtenay
|Outhwaite, R. L.
|Watt, Henry A.
|Kennedy, Vincent Paul
|Palmer, Godfrey Mark
|Parker, James (Halifax)
|Wedgwood, Josiah C.
|Lambert, Richard (Wilts, Cricklade)
|Parry, Thomas H.
|White, J. Dundas (Glasgow, Tradeston)
|Lardner, James C. R.
|Pearce, Robert (Staffs, Leek)
|White, Sir Luke (Yorks, E.R.)
|Lawson, Sir W. (Cumb'rid, Cockerm'th)
|Pearce, William (Limehouse)
|Wilson, Hon. G. G. (Hull, W.)
|Ponsonby, Arthur A. W. H.
|Wilson, W. T. (Westhoughton)
|Price, C. E. (Edinburgh, Central)
|Young, William (Perth, East)
|Lynch, Arthur Alfred
|Pringle, William M. R.
|Yoxall, Sir James Henry
|Raffan, Peter Wilson
|MacNeill, J. G. Swift (Donegal, South)
|TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—Mr.Walter Rea and Mr. F. Hall
|Macpherson, James Ian
|Redmond, John E. (Waterford)
Question, "That the Question be now put," put, and agreed to.
§ Words added. Main Question, as amended, put, and agreed to. Consideration of the Bill, as amended, put off for three months.