§ MR. TALBOT (Oxford University)
I beg to ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether his attention has been drawn to the Return recently issued of all boroughs having a separate Court of Quarter Sessions, with the number of prisoners tried at each Court during the last three years, whereby it appears that in three boroughs no prisoners were tried during the three years, in some only one prisoner, and in many others not more than an average of one or two yearly; and whether he will consider the propriety of gradually bringing this inconvenient system to an end?
§ THE SECRETARY OF STATE FOR THE HOME DEPARTMENT (Mr. MATTHEWS,) Birmingham, E.
My attention has been drawn to this Return, from which it appears that there are not a few boroughs in the fortunate position of having very little crime, and consequently very little to do for their Recorder and his officials. Boroughs having less than 10,000 inhabitants are enabled under the Local Government Act by petition to obtain a revocation of the grant of Quarter Sessions. I have invited some boroughs to avail themselves of this provision. Some have done so: others have preferred to retain an ancient jurisdiction to which they are attached.