HC Deb 22 November 1911 vol 31 c1344W

asked the Prime Minister (1) whether he is aware that at a public meeting held at Colchester on Saturday, 11th November, and attended by, amongst others, some twenty-eight small holders on the Salvation Army colony at Boxted, a resolution was unanimously passed to the effect that this public meeting, having heard the evidence from various small holders of the Boxted colony of the mismanagement of the Boxted scheme by the Salvation Army, considers the affair warrants a full public inquiry, and furthermore demands that steps should be taken to see that the Salvation Army officers concerned do not evade their responsibilities towards these men, who have left their homes and their employment and have been deceived by false promises, and have not been given full opportunity to justify the scheme; and whether, in the interests of the small-holding movement generally, he will take steps to ascertain whether the Salvation Army have adhered to their contract with the men or to what the failure of this experiment in small holding is due; also (2), whether he has received a letter signed by eighteen small holders on the Salvation Army small holding colony at Boxted, near Colchester, Essex, asking for a public inquiry into the conditions prevailing at Boxted; and whether he is prepared to cause such an inquiry to be held or has taken steps to ascertain whether or not there is need for such an inquiry in the interests of the small holders?


I will answer this and the following question together. I have received a letter from eighteen small holders of the Herring Booth Land Settlement, asking for an inquiry into the management of the scheme. The matter does not lie within my province, but it may be within that of the Charity Commission; and I understand that if specific complaint is made to them, the Commission are prepared to look into it and consider whether, under the terms of the scheme, they have power to take any action on the lines desired.