§ MR. MACKINNON
, in rising to move for leave to bring in a Bill, in accordance with the Resolution of the House last Session, wished to ask the right hon. Baronet the Secretary of State for the Home Department, whether it were the intention of Her Majesty's Government to take any steps in accordance with the recommendation of the Committee on this subject, and with the Resolution of the House of last Session? And, if the answer was in the negative, whether, in the event of the Motion being brought forward by him (Mr. Mackinnon), the right han. Baronet would give it his concurrence and support?
§ SIR J. GRAHAM
said, the House would remember that the Resolution referred to had been carried against his strong remonstrance; and that though he had voted against it, he was left in a minority. What he had stated then he was prepared to state now—that the subject, in his eyes, was only exceeded in its importance by its difficulty; but, having given it his best consideration, he had come to the resolution that he could not, on the part of the Government, frame any measure satisfactory to himself for the adoption of Parliament. Under these circumstances he should most gladly support the Motion of his hon. Friend; and when the measure which he proposed to introduce was before the House, he should give it all the attention in his power, and endeavour to make it as fit for the purpose in view as possible.
§ MR. MACKINNON
said, that after these observations of his right hon. Friend, he should proceed with the Motion of which he had given notice. He felt all the difficulty of bringing forward a question of such delicacy and such great magnitude; but he had letters from nearly every large town in the kingdom urging him to press it, and in some cases twitting him as for neglect of his duty in relation to it. He believed if it were adopted, that it would be most conducive to the health of these towns, and most beneficial to their inhabitants; while he was satisfied that it would not only not injure the clergy of the Church of England, but would do them a considerable service. He said this because he was a stanch supporter of that Church, and because he was satisfied that much of the opposition offered to the measure was founded on the erroneous impression that it would injure the clergy. He could state, for his own part, that the superior clergy were most anxious for it, and that the opposition which existed 468 did not emanate from the leading members of the Church. The only way to meet the difficulty which attended the question was, to give towns the opportunity of petitioning the Privy Council, who should have the power of deciding upon the report of their inspector. He trusted that there would be no opposition to the introduction of the Bill, or to its principle, and the House would, of course, do as it thought fit with it in Committee. As there was no opposition to his Motion, he begged leave at once to move—That the practice of interments within the precincts of the metropolis and large towns is injurious to the health of the population, and demands the serious attention of Parliament.
§ MR. HUME
said, the right hon. Baronet admitted the difficulty of the measure consisted principally of the impossibility to reconcile the interests of the Church with the details of this measure: this was a Bill that ought to have Government support, and be introduced by Government; for what was the use of having a Government if it refused to introduce measures that the public advantage imperatively required?
§ SIR J. GRAHAM
, in explanation, wished a right rev. Prelate in another House of Parliament had introduced a Bill on the subject, and then much of the difficulties of the question connected with the Established clergy would most likely have been avoided. The Dissenting bodies, it should be recollected, were also very deeply concerned in the measure.
§ Bill ordered to be brought in.