HL Deb 16 June 1896 vol 41 c1150

in moving the Second Reading of this Bill, said that it was a very simple Measure. It was not intended to deal with great calamities, but was intended to provide the local authorities with moderate powers for preventing floods in cases where no such power could be exercised at present. It was a permissive Bill, and proposed that where there were no drainage areas the County Council might have power to remove obstructions, repair works, facilitate the passage of water, cleanse watercourses, etc. There was no compulsory power of rating. The County Council might, if it thought that it would be for the benefit of the county, pay the expenses out of the county rate, or, if the local authorities were willing to consent and desired to be assisted, the charges might be made partly on the locality and partly on the county.


thought the noble Lord was too modest in representing this as a very simple Bill. Some of its provisions might be very necessary, and he did not wish to oppose the Second Reading, but it seemed to cover a very large area of operation, and he saw in it no saving of the powers of the Thames Conservancy.


said that he should in Committee move to insert a clause saving all the conservancy boards and all elected drainage boards, and it was not intended to interfere with the existing drainage areas.


said he did not suppose such an idea would cross their minds, but if the County Council were disposed to make a new bid for the River Thames, it would be in their power to do so under this Bill. He had no cause to think that any County Council would go so far mad, but still the powers were very extensive, and rather in excess of the modest language used by the noble Lord.

Read 2a (according to Order), and committed to a Committee of the Whole House on Tuesday next.