§ (The Earl Granville.)
§ SECOND READING.
§ Order of the Day for the Second Reading read.1976
§ EARL GRANVILLE,
in moving that the Bill be now read the second time, said, the Bill was to enable the Trustees of the National Gallery to make loans of such pictures as from time to time, in the opinion of the Trustees and Directors, it might be desirable to lend to localities and public galleries in the country. The Bill originated on the proposal of the Directors and Trustees of the National Gallery.
§ Moved, "That the Bill be now read 2a."—(The Earl Granville.)
§ VISCOUNT HARDINGE
said, that, as a Trustee of the National Gallery, he viewed the measure with great satisfaction. The Trustees had been repeatedly applied to by the museums of large towns for the loan of works of Art, and they had hitherto been always obliged by the terms of their trust to refuse all such applications. Another reason why the measure would be welcomed by the Trustees was that it would give them great relief in the matter of space. The Trustees had expended considerable sums of money in purchasing pictures at the late Hamilton sale and at other times. At present it had been found necessary from want of room to place them on screens, where they could not be properly seen. At the present moment, three of their most recent purchases—by Leonardo da Vinci, Botticelli, and Luca Signorelli, respectively—were in the middle of the gallery on screens, where the light was bad, and where they were seen to great disadvantage. He hoped the Government would consider, as they already had the land, the desirability of erecting an additional wing to the building. If nothing were done by Parliament in this matter, the consequence would be that for a considerable time future purchases must go unhung. He would also like to hear whether it was intended to take up this Bill and carry it through the other House during the Autumn Session?
§ EARL GRANVILLE
said, Her Majesty's Government had declared that it was not their intention to promote legislation in the House of Commons during the Autumn Session. He presumed that no exception would be made in favour of this Bill.
§ Motion agreed to; Bill read 2a accordingly.