HL Deb 08 July 1853 vol 128 cc1409-10

having moved that this Bill he read 2a,


wished to observe that there was a Bill now before the House of Commons, introduced by the Government, for the future management of Savings Banks. According to the provisions of that Bill, the Government were to appoint receivers of the money, who were to be assisted by local trustees and managers in the same manner as at present. He conceived, however, that it would be extremely difficult to find any local parties willing to become trustees or managers under the conditions proposed; and that being the case, he was afraid that, without the assistance of such local co-operation, it would be quite impossible to carry on the savings bank system as proposed by Her Majesty's Government. By the latter part of the Bill it was provided that all Savings Banks throughout the country must adopt one of two courses: either they could submit themselves to the provisions of the Bill and participate in its benefits; or the trustees or managers, within three months after the passing of the Act, must become responsible to all parties contributing their money, to the amount of their contribution. Now, when he reminded their Lordships that there was something like 32,000,000l. deposited in the national funds on behalf of savings banks, he could not help thinking that they would coincide with him in a belief that trustees and managers were not very charitably dealt with in holding them responsible for so large an amount of money; and under the provisions of the Bill it would be quite impossible to persuade any party to take such a liability upon him. The effect of the Bill would therefore be, that if no persons were found willing to continue acting as trustees or managers, there would be no means available for working out the measure. Before, then, it was too late, and before their Lordships should be obliged to reject that Bill, he considered it highly desirable that some legal means should be devised to enable the carrying into effect its great object. Perhaps him statement on the occasion might be rather premature; but as the measure to which he referred was otherwise so valuable a one, he was anxious to guard in time against its becoming useless.

Bill read 2a, and committed to a Committee of the whole House on Monday next.

Back to