HL Deb 22 July 1912 vol 12 cc581-3

Order of the Day for the Third Reading read.

Moved, That the Bill be now read 3a.—(Lord Willingdon.)

On Question, Bill read 3a.


I move an Amendment to leave out Clause 7 of the Schedule, which runs—

Purchase of Tramways outside City by Local Authorities.

7. The provisions of Section 43 of the Tramways Act, 1870, shall apply to the intended tramways so far as situated outside the city. Provided that in the application of those provisions the period of forty-two years shall be substitutes for the period of twenty-one years therein mentioned.

This Bill provides, among other things, for the making of tramways inside and outside the city of Glasgow, and General Order No. 130, under the Procedure Act, repeats the Standing Orders of both Houses of Parliament. The effect of that is that if any local authority makes a. tramway outside its own particular area the Commissioners have to put in powers to the outside authority through whose area the tramway goes to purchase the tramway within a certain period. The Commissioners have inserted Clause 7 to carry out this particular Order, but it has been represented to the Commissioners that, under previous legislation on the same lines, the Glasgow Corporation in the years 1901, 1904 and 1905 had this provision omitted. Therefore the Commissioners have recommended to the Secretary for Scotland that, having regard to these precedents, to the relative unimportance of the intended outside lines, and to the advantages of uniformity, these tramways should be exempt from the operation of Section 43 of the Tramways Act, 1870, and they recommend that the clause in question be deleted. The Secretary for Scotland approves the recommendation, and I therefore move to leave out the clause.

Amendment moved— Schedule, page 11, lines 1 to 5, leave out Clause 7—(Lord Willingdon.)


The precedent which the noble Lord proposes to make is a serious one. I remember that some years ago when I was sitting on either a Scottish Commission or a Committee the Glasgow Corporation made a similar proposal. They were proposing to construct tramways in the district of another authority, and they proposed that the other authority should be deprived of the power which all local authorities possess of purchasing the tramway after a certain time. Glasgow thus stretches out its feelers into the surrounding district and obtains a foundation for a claim at some future period to annex that district. On that occasion we came to the conclusion that there was no reason for interfering with the existing law. I do not know anything of the circumstances of the case now before the House, but I should very much like to hear what the Lord Chairman has to say. I venture to think it is a matter that ought to be submitted to the Lord Chairman.


When this matter was submitted to me I was given to understand that there had never been a case in which Glasgow had been refused the privilege for which they are now asking.


I refused it myself.


I have no doubt that the noble Earl's statement is perfectly accurate, but had that side of the case been submitted to me I should have hesitated very much in saying that I would not object to the request made this afternoon that this clause should be omitted. I think it would be for the convenience of your Lordships—it would certainly be for my convenience—if the present stage of the Bill were postponed in order that we may make further inquiry into the matter, because the fact stated by Lord Camperdown puts a different complexion on the affair.


I am perfectly willing that the Bill should be postponed if that is thought desirable.

The further debate adjourned sine die.