§ Order of the Day for the Third Reading read.
§ Moved, "That the Bill be now read 3a"—(Lord Burghclere.)
§ THE EARL OF FEVERSHAM
My Lords, I wish to express my satisfaction that His Majesty's Government have not given any support to this Bill. I do not propose, in the present condition of the House, to move its rejection, but I protest strongly against the Bill. The noble Lord in charge of it did not state any grievance on the part of any particular individual on the ground of permission 734 not being given for public meetings, and we know, as a matter of practice, that it is usual to give leave for public meeting to be held in these schools; but it is a very different thing, in the case of schools which are erected and carried on by private individuals and managers, to make it compulsory that they should be available for public meetings. Those who promote this Bill think more about political agitation than they do about the interests of parochial schools, and I, for one, cannot believe that it is in the interests of the education of the people that these schools should be at the disposal of political agitators, who are empowered by it to go into a parish and say whether the managers of the school like it or not, that they must allow their school to be made the arena of political discussion. I did not like the Third Reading of the Bill to pass without making this protest.
§ On Question, Bill read 3a. Drafting Amendments made. Bill passed, and sent to the Commons.
§ House adjourned at twenty minutes before Eight o'clock, till Monday next, a. quarter before Eleven o'clock.