THE BISHOP OF CARLISLE
, in rising to move for a—Return of the storms which have visited the British Islands between 1st January 1874 and 1274 31st December 1883, and of which no warning has been issued from the Meteorological Office; with a notice of the quarter from which each unwarned storm has reached the coast,said, the Motion which stood in his name on the Paper was a renewal of the Motion in reference to which he had the honour of addressing their Lordships a week or two ago. He, therefore, need not address their Lordships on the present occasion at any length; but there were two points on which he desired to say a few words. A suggestion was made to him by the noble Earl on the Front Bench that he should alter the extent and scope of the Motion. He had taken counsel on that matter, and had come to the conclusion that for the purpose he had in view the Motion as it stood was more simple and more likely to be effective. Consequently, he had not altered his Motion. The other point was this. Since the last discussion of this subject, the noble Lord who represented the Government in matters of this kind had placed in his hands the Report of the Meteorological (Council of the Royal Society for the year ending the 31st of March, 1883. There were in that Report some sentences which entirely supported his Motion. For example, it was stated that last year formed no exception to its predecessor in the fact that more than once serious storms occurred of which no warning was issued. The Report went on to describe the arrangements, which certainly could not be regarded as satisfactory, for signalling the approach of storms. There was some little difficulty in identifying storms, and in guarding against the error of counting them twice over; but, as far as he could make out, about 10 storms reached our coasts in the year 1882 without any warning having been issued by the Meteorological Office. The matter, therefore, was a very serious one, and deserved careful consideration. The Report to which he had already referred stated that in the month of May the Council was requested by the Foreign Office to express its opinion on a proposal emanating from the Danish Government to lay a telegraphic cable to Faroe, Iceland, and Greenland. The Council thought that the scientific importance of such a cable was indisputable, but added that the financial considerations did not come within the province of a conference of meteorologists. In point of fact, the 1275 whole question was one of money; and, consequently, it must be decided by the nation. If we could increase the number of our stations and improve our system of telegraphing, he trusted a mere question of money would not prevent this great nation from doing its duty.
Moved, That there be laid before this House—
Return of the storms which have visited the British Islands between 1st January 1874 and 31st December 1883, and of which no warning has been issued from the Meteorological Office; with a notice of the quarter from which each unwarned storm has reached the coast."—(The lord Bishop of Carlisle.)
said, there was no objection to be made to the Return, provided the right rev. Prelate thought it worth while, and was desirous to persevere with his proposal; but he might, however, point out that much of the information required was already accessible in Blue Books. Would the right rev. Prelate be satisfied if the whole of the information sought for by the Return were included in the future publications of the Meteorological Office?
THE BISHOP OF CARLISLE
said, that the noble Lord's reply would be satisfactory if it were merely a matter of satisfying his personal curiosity. What he wanted to do was, if possible, to bring this matter before the mind of the public, and to influence public opinion upon the subject; and he thought that for that purpose a tabular statement for 10 years would have a very useful effect.
§ Motion agreed to.
§ Return ordered to be laid before the House.