HL Deb 21 April 1836 vol 33 cc4-5
Earl Minto

said, as on the occasion of the noble Marquess having moved for a copy of the instructions issued from the Admiralty to Lord John Hay, so far as related to their authorisation of the letter sent by that officer to the General-in-chief of her Spanish Majesty's forces, he informed the noble Marquess that no such letter had come into his possession; and as since that time he had received a copy of the letter from Lord John Hay himself, he thought it would not be fair or candid if he did not give the noble Marquess information of that fact. He had no objection to the production of that letter if the noble Marquess thought it desirable: but as it had already been communicated to the public, and as he found that nothing could be inferred from it more than he was fully prepared to admit, namely, that it was conformable with the instructions given to Lord John Hay by the Government, to enter into an efficient co-operation with the Spanish Government, under these circumstances the noble Marquess would probably not think the production of the letter necessary.

The Marquess of Londonderry

felt grateful for the information afforded him by the noble Earl. With respect to the production of the letter he must say, that he thought it important to have it on the table of the House as a record, which it might be useful to refer to hereafter. Before he sat down he begged to ask whether there would be any objection on the part of the noble Viscount to produce the dispatch alluded to by him the other night on stating that the convention of Lord Eliot had been productive of an exceedingly beneficial effect? He would move that a copy of the letter be laid on the Table.