HL Deb 29 July 1861 vol 164 cc1731-3

Bill read 3a (according to Order).


protested both against the measure and against the reasons which had been given for adopting it. He had received Returns from a very well managed union in Ireland where the system as to residence was the same as would be introduced into England under this Bill, which showed that while in 1835 the paupers chargeable on the union at large were 1 to 11; the proportion in 1861 was 1 to 2 1/2. He moved to omit from the end of the first clause the words which gave to residence in any part of a union the effect of residence in a parish.


said, he could not consent to the Amendment. The words proposed to be omitted contained a very valuable part of the Bill, and if struck out would defeat one of the main objects for which the measure was introduced. One of the purposes of the Bill was to mitigate, for it was not pretended that it would remove, the great hardships which arose from the removal of poor persons from one part of the country to another. It was obvious that where there were, as in London, a large number of small parishes, removal from one to another would at present destroy the status of irremovability which a person had acquired. These removals were a great source of expense to the ratepayers, and if diminished would tend to a saving. The arguments of the noble Lord being drawn from Ireland were not strictly applicable, as there was no settlement in that country.


was as anxious as the noble Lord to secure a diminution of expense, but doubted whether that would he attained by the Bill.


entered his protest against a Bill of such importance being brought forward at that late period of the Session.

Amendment (by Leave of the House) withdrawn.


said, the question of rating had not yet been fairly and fully considered. On a former occasion he had shown the disproportion between the rating in Berwick and Lancaster. He had since received additional returns, from which it appeared that while in one of the parishes of Croydon there would be, under the Bill, an increase of £1,000 a year, there would be a decrease of £800 in another parish. These discrepancies were very unjust and inexpedient. He thought the Bill would also bear unfairly on the owners of tithes, which, when commuted, were an unimprovable property. He should move the omission of Clause 9, and subsequently move the addition of a clause limiting the continuance of the Bill to three years. The Bill was being passed with a great deal too much haste, and as it was doubtful whether the change would be just it ought to be an experimental and not a permanent measure. The noble Lord proposed to leave out Clause 9.


did not deny that the Bill would shift the burden from parishes which were unfairly taxed to parishes which were unfairly exempted, but he maintained that it was a desirable object, and that the omission of the clause would aggravate the inequality, because other provisions in the Bill would bring on the open parishes a still larger burden, and leave those which did not bear their fair share more exempt than before. As regarded unions in two different counties, inequalities might arise from the county assessment being taken as the basis; but, as the county justices could order a new assessment and correct any injustice, he did not deem it a defect in the Bill. With regard to tithes, the Act of 1848 first made a change, and this Bill merely adjusted the burden more fairly. Some tithe owners might have to bear an increased charge, but others would bear a less charge. It could not be contended that the bargain with the tithe owners was such as to preclude Parliament from making any change. He should not consent to omit the 9th Clause, or to make the Bill temporary. They had been passing temporary Acts for fifteen years, and the time was arrived when they were bound to render their legislation permanent. As to the Bill being passed in haste, he would remind their Lordships that in the other House it had received a great deal of consideration, and that their Lordships being well acquainted with the subject could have proposed Amendments if they had thought them necessary at any of the previous stages.

Question put, "Whether the said Clause shall stand part of the Bill."

Resolved in the Affirmative,


then moved "at the end of the Bill to add the following Clause: 'This Act shall continue in force for Three years only.' "

Amendment put, and negatived.

Bill passed.