HL Deb 10 August 1883 vol 283 cc48-51

General Provisions.

Clause 52 (Commencement of Act) agreed to.

Clause 53 (Exception of non-agricultural and small holdings).

THE EARL OF CAMPERDOWN moved an Amendment, to insert words to provide that nothing in the Bill should apply to holdings "less than two acres in extent."

Amendment moved, in page 18, line 38, after ("holding") insert ("less than two acres in extent.")—(The Earl of Camperdown.)


said, he hoped his noble Friend (the Earl of Camper-down) would press his Amendment. It was most important to the small holder of land. It had been said in the other House that small holder had no compensation for improvements when he left. His father was one of the first to establish the allotment system in his own county, and he had a great many allotments on his property. All he would say was, that he knew of no case where there had not been a fair compensation given. It had been well remarked in the House of Commons that some provision ought to be made that the compensation should in no case case exceed half the value of the land. To let all these small holdings come under the Bill would be to discourage landlords from letting small plots of land, and to discourage the allotment system. It was said that all difficulty would be avoided by a weekly agreement. He believed such an agreement was beneficial to the tenant, for it enabled him to seek the best employment at short notice, without the tie of having to pay for land he did not want. At the request of some working men, he had let them about two acres each; it was an experiment he thought would answer well with good men—that was, as long as they could earn their wages besides. He believed it was of advantage to these men that they should have the power of giving six months' notice. If the two acre limit were retained, he would let them nearly two acres each without coming under the Bill. If it was not retained, this experiment would not be encouraged. The letting of large plots of land was very much appreciated. He hoped the Committee would agree to the Amendment.


said, that the House of Commons had agreed that the Bill should apply to market gardens; and, that being the case, it would be impossible to agree to the limit proposed. Further than that, he did not see why, if improvements had been made on a small scale, compensation on the same scale should not be awarded.


said, he should be glad to modify his Amendment to meet the case referred to by the noble Lord, so that it should read as follows:—"Nothing in this Act shall apply to a holding that, not being a market garden, is less than two acres in extent."


said, he preferred the clause as it stood.


said, he would remind their Lordships that the clause, as now framed, was not in the original Bill. He did not agree to the Amendment, however, on the ground that it might interfere with the letting of land in small allotments; and he would therefore suggest, as the best mode of meeting all the requirements of the case, that they should adopt the limit of one acre.


said, he should prefer the limitation being kept at two acres, because, besides the allotments of arable land, there were in some parts of the country small holdings of pasture land called cowgates, which would keep one or two cows, and these might be interfered with by this clause of the Bill.


said, he hoped the Committee would agree to the Amendment, otherwise he could not accept the clause, as it would cruelly affect the poorer tenants. The effect of this Bill would be to cause many landlords to evict their tenants.

Amendment amended, and agreed to.

Clause, as amended, agreed to.

Clauses 54 to 59, inclusive, severally agreed to.

Clause 60 (Interpretation).

On the Motion of The LORD PRESIDENT of the COUNCIL, the following Amendments made:—In page 20, line 38, leave out ("after the commencement of this Act"); and in line 40, after ("other") insert ("immediately after the commencement of this Act.")

Clause, as amended, agreed to.

Clause 61 (Repeal of Act of 1875).

On the Motion of The LORD PRESIDENT of the COUNCIL, the following Amendments made:—In page 21, line 32, after ("1875") insert ("and the Agricultural Holdings (England) Act, 1875, Amendment Act, 1876"); leave out from ("right") in line 34 to ("under") inline 35, both inclusive, and insert ("thing duly done or suffered or any proceedings pending under or in pursuance of"); line 36, leave out ("of a tenant"); page 22, line 3, after ("Act") insert ("or"), and insert as a separate sub-section— (d.) Any right in respect of fixtures affixed to a holding before the commencement of this Act. Line 4, leave out from ("such") to ("such") both inclusive, and after ("right") insert ("reserved by this section may be enforced"); and in line 6, leave out ("he would have been entitled.")

Clause, as amended, agreed to.

Clauses 62 and 63 severally agreed to.

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