Page images
PDF
EPUB

pursuance of the powers vested in his / received. He admitted that the manageMajesty, by two acts passed in the 18th ment being left to a committee was preand 39th years of his present Majes. ferable, but still the public ought to possess ty's reign, his Majesty was graciously a full right of inspection and controul. pleased, by letters patent, bearing date He would not now enter fully into Mr. the 2d of February 1802, to grant to their Bentham's plan, but it was to be rememroyal highnesses the princesses Augusta- bered, that lightly as it had been spoken Sophia, Elizabeth, Mary, Sopbia, and Ame- of, it bad on mature deliberation been aplia, an annuity of 30,0001. agreeably to the proved of by Mr. Pitt and by lord Melville. provisions and subject to the limitations He had only recommended the plan of of the said acts, which grant was to take Mr. Bentham to the consideration of the effect from the demise of his Majesty; House on account of the advantages it had and his Royal Highness being desirous, in over other plans of a similar nature, on the present situation of the royal family, account of its superior economy, and the to be empowered to provide for the esta prospect it held out of furnishing the conblishment of their royal bigbnesses the victs with employment when the term of Princesses, by an immediate grant, re, their imprisonment expired. In support commends to the House of Commons, to of the utility of prisons being subjected to take the subject into their consideration, public inspection, he referred to a recent and to enable his Royal Highness to make work of Mr. Neild's, which disclosed such provision for their royal high- practices on the part of gaolers and others, nesses the Princesses, as in the liberality that could not take place if the public eye of parliament may be thought suitable to bad been upon them; for he believed in the actual situation of the Princesses, and every case, that there were no inspectors to the circumstances of the present time. or guardians so good as the public them

G. P. R.selves. With regard to the erection of Ordered to be taken into consideration Penitentiary Houses, he believed he might on Monday.

advert to the warm and zealous support

with which such a plan had been mainPENITENTIARY House Bill.) On the tained by Mr. Pitt and Mr. Dundas; at motion for going into a Committee on this least if he was wrong, he saw a right hon. Bill.

gentleman in his place who could set him Mr. Kenrick moved an instruction to the right. He wished that the Bill might not Committee, that provision should be made, be committed that evening, on account of that persons convicted of felony, without the thinness of the House, and that membenefit of clergy, should be kept to hard bers might have an opportunity of fully labour.

. possessing themselves of its object; and Mr. Holford rose, in consequence of in- he should therefore move as an amendment, formation he had received, that it was in that the House should go into a Committee tended to oppose the principle of the Bill. upon it on Wednesday the 15th of April. He entered into a minute examination of Mr. Long observed, in reply to the rethe plan of Mr. Bentham, which, he conference of his hon. and learned friend, that tended, was wholly inadequate to the ob. certainly no person was more anxious than ject; and he drew a comparison between Mr. Pitt, that some plan similar to that it and the scheme he had the honour of now proposed, should be adopted. Mr. proposing to the House this session. He Dundas was also of the same opinion, but dwelt particularly on the benefits likely to be was not prepared to say that they were result from the management being placed particularly attached to Mr. Bentham's in the hands of a committee, instead of plan, (which though it had many good an individual controulable only by the parts, and contained much that might be court of King's-bench.

adopted) it was impossible any person Sir S. Romilly lamented that the subject could wholly approve, who had attentively should be discussed in so thin a House. I examined it. One of his principal objections to the plan 1 Mr. Abercromby spoke in favour of Mr. now suggested had been removed, namely, Bentham's plan, though he had never rethat the institution was calculated to recommended its unqualified adoption. He ceive so few offenders. Still, however, would vote with his hon. and learned friend the objects to which it was to apply were against proceeding farther that night, and too much restricted, as criminals convicted hoped he would take the sense of the House in London and Middlesex were only to be on the subject.

Mr. Secretary Ryder stated his objec- , move for leave to bring in two Bills for tions to various parts of Mr. Bentham's regulating the Offices of Registrar of the plan. He strongly opposed the amendHigh Court of Admiralty and of Rememment, on account of the delay it would brancer of the Court of Exchequer. As occasion. He was desirous of making the he understood that his motion for leave to plan as perfect as possible; but he could bring in these Bills was not to be opposed, see no advantage likely to result from he should state nothing farther as to the postponing the Committee on the Bill, as necessity of them at present. His object he conceived the thinness of the House was to assimilate the Offices of Registrar was to be in a great measure ascribed to a of the Court of Admiralty, and deputy feeling on the part of the members absent, | Remembrancer of Exchequer, as far as the that to attend on this occasion was unne. custody of the money belonging to suitors cessary.

in those courts was concerned, to the Of. Mr. Wilberforce gave his testimony to the fice of Receiver-General in the Court of value of Mr. Bentham's plan, not indeed | Chancery. He accordingly moved for without amendments, which it had ever leave to bring in a Bill to regulate the Of. courted, and could not, therefore, be con- fice of Registrar of the High Court of Adsidered as pretending to perfection. He miralty, as far as concerned the custody particularly eulogised that part of it which of the money of suitors in that Court; also, provided for the restoration of the crimi- for leave to bring in a Bill to regulate the nal to society in a manner which would Office of Deputy Remembrancer of Exchenot, as it were, compel him to a renewal quer, in as far as concerned the custody of of his vicious courses. He trusted this the money belonging to suitors in that system would put an end to transportation, Court. except for life, to those whom it was ex The Chancellor of the Exchequer said, he pedient to banish altogether from their had no wish to oppose the motion of his countrymen.

hon. and learned friend for leave to bring Mr. Bathurst was against any further in the Bills. He should mark the progress postponement. It had appeared, from the of the Bills, however, through the House, report of the Committee, that the situation and should take an opportunity of proposof the felons in the several gaols of the me- | ing clauses granting compensations to the tropolis called for the most prompt atten- persons who were at present in possession tion. He objected to the plan of making the of the offices referred to, without which prisoners a public spectacle, which, in his he could not consent to the Bills now proopinion, had a tendency to defeat the posed passing into a law. main object, namely, that of affording Mr. Martin said, he should be prepared them every opportunity of solitary reflec. to meet the right hon. gentleman on this tion upon the nature of their offences, and subject, whenever the proper stage for the justice of their punishment.

doing so should arise. Mr. C. Adams supported the amendment, Leave was accordingly given to bring on the ground of the absence of many in the said Bills.' hon. and legal members on the assizes, whose opinions it would be satisfactory to receive on this question.

HOUSE OF LORDS. Mr. W. Smith saw no inconvenience in

Monday, March 23. putting it off for so short a period as that 1 ProvisioN FOR THE PRINCESSES.) The proposed by his hon. and learned friend. order of the day for taking into consideraThe House divided on the amendment. tion the Prince Regent's Message on the

For the Amendment. ............ 18 above subject being read:
Against it ......................... 35 The Earl of Liverpool rose for the pur-

Majority ..................... 17 pose of moving an Address to his Royal The House then resolved itself into a Highness, on the occasion. He observed, Commitiee, in which the various clauses that in a case such as that before their of the Bill underwent a discussion.

lordships, he felt it would be unnecessary The House having resumed, the report to call their attention but very generally was ordered to be received on Monday. to it. He felt confident it must be the in

tention of parliament to enable his Royal ADMIRALTY REGISTRAR's Bill.1 Mr. Highness to make a due and suitable proHenry Martin rose, agreeably to the notice vision for the illustrious personages adwhich he had repeatedly renewed, to verted to in the Message. The more so when the present peculiar situation of Highness of the cheerful concurrence of those illustrious ladies, and their exempla- their lordships in measures to enable bim ry conduct upon every occasion, were to make the desired provision. considered by parliament and by the coun. Earl Grosvenor certainly did not mean try. Under all the circumstances of the to oppose the grant. He only wished to case, he felt assured there must exist an know out of what fund it was to be paid. anxious desire that such a provision should The Earl of Liverpool answered, that it be made for them as was deemed suitable was to be paid out of the Consolidated and adequate for the occasion. The Ad- Fund. dress, which he should move for the con- The Earl of Esser expressed his wish to currence of their lordships, would not go be informed, whether in the Bill which it to pledge the House to any specific grant; was intended to introduce on the occasion, yet he was aware it might be desirable on it was proposed to make any arrangement this occasion, that he should, for the infor- with respect to the provision of her royal mation of noble lords, state the nature of highness the Princess of Wales ? the grant which it was proposed to bring | The Earl of Liverpool observed, that he under the consideration of parliament. had received no commands from his Royal Their lordships were aware, from the Highness on the occasion, and that the Mescommunication of his Royal Highness, sage before their lordships had merely rethat as the law now stood, the sum of ference to the establishment of their royal 30,0001. per annum was appropriated for highnesses the Princesses. the purpose in question, but this was not to ! The question was then put, and the Adtake place until the demise of his Majesty dress agreed to nem. dis. From the circumstances of the case, a new arrangement and farther provision became Mr. ChinNERY's DeFALCATION.] Earl necessary. What it was proposed now to Grosvenor rose to request, that the noble do would take place immediately, and Secretary would give the House some inin addition to the sum he had mentioned. | formation relative to the failure of the According to the pending arrangement, First Clerk of the Treasury: and it would that sum divided between the four Prin- depend upon the answer he should receive, cesses would yield an annuity of between whether be should, at some other time, 7 and 8,0001. to each, and in case of a re.) make a motion on the subject. The affair duction in the number of those illustrious was one of the very first importance, personages to be provided for, that income The defalcation, at the very lowest statewould be so divided, that if three remained, ment of it, was not less than 70,0001. He each Princess would have 10,0001. a year; should not, perhaps, have called their and the same sum to each, if reduced to lordships' attention to the matter in this two; but in case only one should remain, way, had this been an unique case; but then the annuity to such remaining prin. when they saw the same frauds taking cess would be only 12,0001. It was now place on other occasions, in the Ordnance proposed, forthwith, to increase this pend. Department, and elsewhere, it was not a ing annuity of between seven and 8,0001. subject to be passed over lightly. These to 9,0001. a year each, subject still to the frauds had now extended to the Treasury advantages of survivorship, by extending itself, which ought to be particularly it to the sum of 10,000l. in case of reduc vigilant against all frauds of this kind. tion to three or to two; but in case one only Still, however, he might not have thought should remain, then the annuity not to ex it necessary to mention the subject in ceed 12,0001. The operation of the mea- this manner, had it not been that this persure would be to render the pending ar. son had been long living in habits of extrarangement immediate, and to increase vagance, so that people were surprised how the respective amounts from between 7 a person in his situation should have been and 8,0001. per annum to 9,0001. This able to expend such large sums in buildwas the general outline of what was pro- ings, and other projects. This, therefore, posed. And as it was not competent to was not a common case, in which a default that House to originate a measure of the might have taken place without exciting kind, the Address he should move would any previous suspicion. Here the suspibe of a general nature, not pledging the cions of the Treasury ought to have been House to any specific sum. The noble roused, and then much of the money Secretary concluded by moving an Ad- might have been saved. The person in dress to that effect, and assuring his Royal question had been a protege of a righ$ hon. gentleman, now Vice-President of would afford, it was highly probable tbat the Board of Trade (Mr. Rose) whose full as much time would be allowed for the eyes, it might be imagined, should have discussion as was allowed on the last occa. been open to his proceedings.

sion the subject was under the considera. The Earl of Liverpool observed, that their tion of parliament. It was at that time lordships must be sure he could not regu. | the latter end of April when it was brought larly afford any information on the sub- forward. Their lordships would recollect ject. The transaction referred to was one that a committee of the other House had between the Lords of the Treasury and the subject long under their considera. one of the Clerks of that department; the tion; and he was confident that noble proceedings were of some notoriety, and I lords would be amply and satisfactorily inby the extent that was issued, a consider- formed on the subject. able sum had been obtained. It was un- The Earl of Lauderdale concurred in the doubtedly competent to the noble earl to opinion of his noble friend, that the subject bring forward a motion on the subject if ought to have been brought under the consi. he thought proper ; and it would be for deration of parliament at an earlier period. the House to consider how far such mo The noble viscount said, that as much time tion could be entertained.

as possible would be allowed for the con

sideration of the subject, but there was not ORDERS IN COUNCIL.] Earl Fitzwilliam | the least resemblance between the case, as addressed a few observations to the House it at this time presented itself, and as it then with reference to this subject. He said | stood. At that time they were to believe he should have several petitions to present that the East India trade could be only from manufacturers and other commercial carried on through a very extensive capi. persons, complaining of the injurious and tal, and preferably, by a joint stock comdestructive consequences resulting to their pany. Now it was carried on by a cominterests from the Orders in Council : and I pany who avowedly had no capital at that, when these petitions should be before | all. He was afraid there was no resem. the House, he should feel it incumbent on blance between the cases. A negociation, him, to come forward with a motion for it was said, was carrying on between gothe repeal of so injurious a system.

vernment and the company, but he would

ask, were the government and the comEast India Company's Charter. pany the only parties? Were not the disEarl Grey observed, that under the circum- tressed manufacturing and commercial in. stances of the case, he felt that the atten terests of the country to be consulted and tion of parliament should be speedily di. | attended to ? rected to another topic of the highest im- | Lord Melville said, he should not be portance. He meant the affairs of India, provoked by any thing which had fallen and the approaching expiration of the from the noble earl to enter into a premaCompany's charter. In this view he had ture discussion of topics not regularly be. to express bis surprise, that not a single do fore the House. When the subject should cument had yet been laid on the table by be before the public and parliament, he ministers. What he principally rose for would answer, and he trusted successfully, was to ask whether they meant to bring on the arguments of the noble earl. this great and important subject in the remaining part of the present session ; and

HOUSE OF COMMONS. to know their opinion whether, during the remainder of the session, there would be

Monday, March 23. adequate time for the due consideration of PETITION FROM PRESTON RESPECTING so extensive and important a question. Peace, PARLIAMENTARY Reform, &c.]

Lord Melville stated, that it certainly Lord Stanley presented a Petition from was intended to bring forward the subject several inhabitants of the town and neighadverted to, in the present session of par- |

bourhood of Preston, in the county of Lanliament. He had also to state, that a discaster, setting forth, cussion was going on between the Court of " That the major part of the Petitioners Directors and government on the subject; | are actually suffering, and all of them are and he had little doubt but soon after the compelled to see many thousands of their recess it would be produced. With re- | fellow-townsmen and neighbours suffer spect to what the noble earl had stated as great hardships, for want of the commonest to the time the remainder of the session | necessaries of life, which it is not in their power, by all the exertions they can use, humbly pray that the House will, as early to procure for themselves and families, as as possible, take into their consideration the House will readily believe, when the the present state of the representation of Petitioners assure them (as indeed was the Commons in parliament; and they proved before a Committee of the House have full confidence that the House will in the last session of parliament,) that the readily discover a means of reforming the wages of a respectable body of artisans many abuses which the Petitioners cannot resident in that once flourishing town doubt the House is well aware exist in this and the neighbourhood are less by more particular.” than one half of what they were previously Ordered to lie upon the table. to the war with France, which began in the year 1793, whilst the price of every! BREACH OF PRIVILEGE-COMPLAINT REnecessáry article of subsistence has risen SPECTING A WITNESS BEING ARRESTED.) since that time in more than a twofold Mr. Eden made a complaint against a per: proportion; and that, in the humble judg. son of the name of Hindson, an officer of ment of the Petitioners, these and like dis the sheriff of Surrey, for having arrested a tresses, to which most of them, as well as 1 person of the name of Campbell, who was a large portion of their beloved country on his way to be examined before a Com. men, are at this time subjected, are attri- mittee of that House. The hon. member butable, as an immediate cause to the war stated, that he was chairman of the comin which the country is at present en- mittee appointed to enquire into the state gaged ; tbe Petitioners, therefore, are and condition of the transports. It being most anxious that if there exist any possi- necessary to examine Mr. Campbell, he on bility of obtaining a peace, consistently | Friday issued his precept, requiring his with our honour and security, negocia attendance, and that person was in obetions may be immediately entered into for dience to that precept, on his way to the the attainment of this desirable object; committee room, when he was arrested by this anxiety, however, they beg to assure Hindson, Campbell shewed the officer the the House, is not created in them by any precept, but the latter disregarded the dread of the enemy; but being unacquaint. order and carried him to a place of coned with any desirable object, to the attain- finement, where he now remained. In ment of which a prosecution of the war such case, the hon, member observed, he will be conducive, they are desirous that should follow the practice which was no opportunity may be omitted of entering adopted on similar occasions, and which into negociations for the restoration of the was also recognised by the judges of the blessings of peace and amity; and that in courts below, who always protected wit. the humble opinion of the Petitioners, the nesses in going and coming to their courts, primary and principal causes of the evils and move, « That Richard Hindson, they have enumerated, and of many others officer of the sheriff of Surrey, and Mr. which they are unwilling to trouble the Campbell, do attend this House to-morHouse with a recital of, are to be found in row." -On the question being put, the admitting into the House of persons Mr. Lockhart apprehended that there sent from old and decayed boroughs, who was no necessity to order the attendance are, in most cases, returned at the instiga. of Mr. Campbell, as the mere statement gation of ministers of the crown, or peers of the matter of privilege to the House, of the realm, contrary to the express tenor would be sufficient to induce the officer to of our laws and constitution; and in the discharge him out of custody; therefore admittance also into the House of many all that was necessary to be done was, to minor placemen and pensioners, who have order the officer to attend to answer the an interest different, and, in most cases, in complaint. opposition to the great body of the Com- The Speaker observed, that the course mons of the United Kingdom, whom they of proceeding was so clear, that it was unought to represent; and praying, that the necessary for him to interpose his opinion House will, in its great wisdom, recom- before putting the question. The course mend to his royal highness the Prince Re- proposed by the hon. mover was the ordigent, that all possible means may be nary parliamentary course, namely, to adopted, consistently with the national require the attendance of the two parties honour and security, of restoring to his before the House-the one to state the Majesty's faithful subjects the blessings of cause and manner of his arrest, and the peace; and likewise the Petitioners most other to give such answer to the charge as

« PreviousContinue »