HL Deb 07 August 1866 vol 184 cc2126-7

in moving the third reading of this Bill, thought it necessary to make a few remarks upon a question which was of great public importance. A Notice of Motion for the suspension of the Standing Orders had been given by his noble Friend opposite (the Marquess of Clanricarde), with a view to the introduction of Amendments, the object of which was to create out of the existing income of the Company a separate fund upon which a loan of £1,000,000 was to be raised; and, as he understood, these clauses had received the approval of the Board of Trade. Now the income of the Company was insufficient to pay its existing debt, and the proceedings which had been taken in the Court of Chancery showed most distinctly that such was the case. Their Lordships would, therefore, see that it was impossible to listen to an application the effect of which would divert from its proper object the money which was now pledged to the payment of interest upon certain debentures already existing. In order to create a new fund an additional income should be raised and an additional burden thrown upon the Company. It would be impossible to carry on the affairs of companies with a just regard to the interest of their creditors if such a course of proceeding were allowed, and he therefore felt it his duty to decline to sanction the introduction of the Amendments to which he had referred.


in explanation, said, it had been represented to him that if the proposition to which his noble Friend the Chairman of Committees alluded were sanctioned by Parliament, it would be of the greatest use to the Company, and the opinion of the Board of Trade was that the object for which these clauses had been drawn up was desirable. Without knowing anything of the particulars of the case himself, or intending to take any Motion on the subject on his own account, he had thought that an opportunity ought to be afforded to any noble Lord who might think proper to do so of submitting the matter to the consideration of Parliament by moving the clauses which the Company desired to have introduced into the Bill. It was with that view that he had given notice for the suspension of the Standing Orders, which would be a necessary proceeding in such a case. He, however, quite agreed that the course proposed could not be permitted unless it received the sanction of all existing creditors. No such assent was alleged, and therefore he was not disposed to press the matter.

Order for taking into Consideration the Standing Order No. 179. sect. 6 in order to its being dispensed with; read, and discharged; Bill read 3a, with the Amendments, and passed, and sent to the Commons.