HL Deb 16 June 1890 vol 345 cc991-2

in rising to ask Her Majesty's Government whether the scheme of the Charity Commissioners for the management of Christ's Hospital has the sanction and approval of the present Governors, and whether the 148th clause of the scheme will allow the Charity Commissioners to alter the scheme without obtaining the sanction of Parliament, said: My Lords, I do not desire to enter into the merits or demerits of the case before your Lordships, but simply to ascertain whether the scheme proposed has the consent and approbation of the Governors of Christ's Hospital; and with regard to the second part of the question it seems to me that either the 148th clause is a redundancy if the Commissioners in bringing in another scheme are obliged to lay it on the Table of your Lordships' House—or under it they might effect a great change without the knowledge of Parliament. I beg to ask the question which stands in my name.


My, Lords, the scheme to which my noble Friend refers is one which has been a long time maturing; I may almost say for the last 12 years. When it first emanated from the Charity Commission it was considered very care fully by the Education Department, and passed on, as there was an opportunity of taking the opinion of the Judicial Committee. I understand that Committee considered all objections made, sitting for 11 days, and eventually passed the scheme with one exception. The new scheme rcetified in that respect is now before Parliament, and, so far, has passed without OF position in the House of Commons on the part of anyone, except as to a point of detail regarding which a Division was taken the other night—quite a small part of it. With regard to the attitude of the Governors when the scheme was before the Judicial Committee it was opposed by many of the Governors and the Corporation of the City of London, but they have determined now not to" oppose the scheme, and, so far as I know, opposition will not be carried into either House of Parliament. At least, I have no knowledge on the subject if that is intended. With regard to the second matter which has been called attention to by my noble Friend, under the 148th clause power is reserved for ordinary alterations to be made when the Governors call upon the Charity Com mission to make amendments for the better working of the scheme; not with the view to make it a different scheme, but with a view to make it a scheme which, under the management of the Governors, can be made operative. If the Charity Commissioners should make alterations, there is an appeal to the Court of Chancery provided for. If there should be on the initiation of the Charity Commission a change of scheme it will have to go through all the steps which the scheme itself has gone through.