HL Deb 08 August 1878 vol 242 cc1499-500

House in Committee (according to Order).


explained that it was a Bill to confirm two Provisional Orders made by the Board of Trade under the Tramways Act relating to the Glasgow and Ibrox tramways and the Wrexham district tramways. By the Amendment he was about to propose to the Committee, all the clauses which related to the use of steam power upon tramways in regard to the Glasgow and Ibrox tramways were struck out, while the second Provisional Order, which related to the Wrexham tramways, had been abandoned. The other Provisional Order—the Glasgow and Ibrox tramways —would be amended in so far that the use of steam would not be allowed; but for the sake of making an experiment, the use of what was termed the Scott-Moncreiff system, which was a motive power supplied by compressed air, would be permitted. The operation of this confirming Bill, when amended as he now proposed, would be confined to two years. Their Lordships would see, therefore, that the scheme was a purely experimental one; and he hoped, by the beginning of the next Session of Parliament, the construction of the tramway would be so far advanced that the Select Committee that was proposed to be appointed to inquire into the subject of the use of mechanical power and steam on tramways would have the advantage of the experience gained by the working of this Scott-Moncreiff system before they made their Report. No other tramway could so well supply information on this subject as this one. The Provisional Order for the construction of this tramway was granted last year; and, therefore, if it were thought desirable not to allow the continuance of the Scott-Moncreiff system after the lapse of two years, they could use animal power only.


said, that he had no objection to the passing of the Bill with the Amendments made by the noble Lord; but, at the same time, he confessed that if the matter had been brought before him, he would not have assented to it, because it gave an advantage to a particular Bill which all the others which had been dealt with did not possess; and, considering that they were dealing with private undertakings, he thought that they ought to be treated all alike, whether it was proposed to propel the cars by means of compressed air or not.

Amendments made: The Report thereof to be received To-morrow.