§ Amendments reported (according to order).
said, he wished to ask a question as to Clause 10, which said that certain sections of a certain Act already in existence should be incorporated into this Act. That mode of legislating was, he was sorry to say, now very often adopted; but it was a slovenly and objectionable way of proceeding. In the first place, it was very difficult for a person who did not know the old Act to understand what was done; and, in the second place, it was very hard to amend the imported clauses. Under the section with regard to the appropriation of seats in the case of the church of a united parish, while reserving half seats free, power was given to the Bishop to appropriate the remaining seats. In the City churches there were a great many old appropriated seats. When he was a Member of one of the Committees on this question, he found that the Sheriffs and Lord Mayor had certain rights to seats in a great number of those churches. If their rights were taken away in regard to other churches, the Bishop had the power by this clause to make up for the deprivation by giving them seats in the churches of the united parishes. As many of the old churches were doing good work, because they had entirely thrown open the seats, it seemed very hard, when the parishes were united, that the Bishop should turn half these seats into appropriated seats.
THE BISHOP OF LONDON
said, it appeared to him that the difficulty was a small one, as no church would be pulled down where there was any large body of parishioners; but where there were a few persons left in a parish, who were entitled to appropriated seats in the church pulled down, they should be in the same manner accommodated with seats in the church to which their parish 220 was joined. The Bill, as it stood, would do no one any harm.
§ THE EARL OF POWIS
begged to move, after Clause 14, to insert as a new Clause—(Provision for special services.)On the application of the patron of any church, and with the concurrence of the bishop of the diocese, the Commissioners may by any scheme under this Act provide for the appropriation of such church for holding services for sailors or any other special class of population, and for nominating and licensing, and for the remuneration of any spiritual person or persons to serve such church, subject to the provisions of section nineteen of the Act twenty-third and twenty-fourth Victoria, chapter one hundred and forty-two, with respect to repair and monuments, and also for the application of any repair funds or endowments belonging to such church in furtherance of the objects of the scheme: Provided that on a representation by the Ecclesiastical Commissioners to the effect that such appropriation has become unnecessary, Her Majesty in Council may at any time approve any scheme to determine such appropriation and provide for the future use and appropriation of the church and its endowments, if any.
THE BISHOP OF LONDON
said, he had no objection to the Amendment. The object of the Bill was to remove the churches which had no adequate use; but if churches could be made useful for services for sailors and the like, by all means let them stand. If an appropriation of that kind was found on trial to be inexpedient, power was given to the Commissioners to determine it.
§ Amendment agreed to.
§ Bill to be read 3a on Tuesday next; and to be printed as amended. (No. 118.)