hoped that a little more information would be given by his noble and learned Friend touching the law reforms intended to be introduced by the Government. The Queen's Speech alluded distinctly to such changes; and, as his noble and learned Friend must know what they were, he hoped he would state their object.
The Lord Chancellor
said, he could not inform his noble and learned Friend, nor could he explain the course which her Majesty's Government might take, until he saw how far the bill of his noble and learned Friend went, and to what point it extended. He, begged, however, to assure his noble and learned Friend and their Lordships that her Majesty's Government had not lost sight of the object which his noble and learned Friend had 195 in view; and further, that every endeavour would be made to accomplish that object with all possible speed. The attention of the Government had been recently occupied by several measures for the improvement of the law, and for its better and more effectual administration. A most important bill had been prepared for the improvement of the ecclesiastical courts, and was now complete. This bill would shortly be laid before their Lordships. Another bill which her Majesty's Government had it in contemplation to introduce, corresponded with that which was before their Lordships in the course of the last Session relating to the establishment of certain local courts. The object of this measure was to facilitate the recovery of small claims by a more expeditious and less expensive process than was now required for that purpose. A third and most important measure was intended to effect an improvement in the law relating to insolvency, and, would, he believed, provide for the better administration of that law. He felt it was not necessary that he should go further than to say that these measures would be brought under the consideration of their Lordships without loss of time.
had heard the announcement of his noble and learned Friend with great satisfaction, and hoped the measures to which his noble and learned Friend had alluded would be laid before the House as speedily as possible, in order that they might meet with that full discussion which from their importance they deserved. Many measures had in the last Session of Parliament been introduced at a later period than was desirable. The Bankruptcy Bill was brought forward at so late a period that those noble Lords who entertained objections to particular clauses in that measure had no fair opportunity of discussing them. He therefore hoped that these measures would not only be introduced early, but that they would be pressed forward in their progress, in order that they might come back to their Lordship's House at a conveniently early period of the Session.
The Lord Chancellor
begged to assure his noble and learned Friend that the Bankruptcy Bill of last Session was introduced at a sufficiently early period. It was fully discussed by their Lordships, before it went to the other House of Parliament. It was there discussed fully, 196 deliberately, and repeatedly. It was there discussed in all its stages, and for several successive nights. Indeed, he might venture to say that no measure was ever more fully discussed than the Bankruptcy Bill of the last Session. As to the suggestion which had been offered by his noble and learned Friend, he could not accede to it. He felt it to be impossible that a system so complicated and intricate as the bankruptcy law of this country could be satisfactorily administered by an ambulatory tribunal, as suggested by his noble and learned Friend. In regard to the Local Courts Bill, her Majesty's Government had used all diligence to carry that measure into a law. It had been sent down to the other House of Parlament, and was there discussed on the first and second reading, was committed and recommitted, and he (the Lord Chancellor) had never been able to ascertain the precise reason why it was not passed.
§ Conversation at an end.