§ Order read, for resuming adjourned Debate on Amendment [this day] to Lords, Amendment, in page 4, line 20, after "authority," insert "provided that all damage due to fair wear and tear in the use of any room in the school house for the purpose of a public elementary school shall be made good by the local education authority [but this obligation of the local education authority shall throw no additional charge on any public funds]."1409
Which Amendment was—
To leave out the words 'but this obligation of the local education authority shall throw no additional charge on any public funds.' "—(Sir James Fergusson).
§ Question again proposed, "That the words proposed to be left out stand part of the Lords, Amendment."
§ (9.0) MR. ELLIS GRIFFITH
said that since half-past seven he had had an opportunity of looking at the steps taken in the other place in order to introduce this Amendment, and he thought they had a right to complain of the manner in which it had been done. He found that the Duke of Norfolk stated that the Amendment was purely formal—
§ *MR. SPEAKER—Order, order! The hon. Member is referring to the debates in the other House. It is not in order thus to carry on the debate in this House.
§ MR. ELLIS GRIFFITH
said he thought he was entitled to refer to the way in which those words had been placed upon the Paper, and to point out that, though they were treated as formal, they were actually introduced in order to put the Lords Amendment in order, and to escape the accusation of committing a breach of the privileges of the House of Commons. He believed the Lord Chancellor once said that the function of the House of Lords was to prevent the country being tricked, and, personally, he thought the function of the House of Commons was to prevent itself being tricked by the House of Lords. There could be no doubt that the words were introduced by a trick ordodge; that they were, in fact, a fraud upon the House of Commons, and that they were put in because without them it would be impossible to introduce a certain Amendment at that stage. The hon. Member for North Louth—speaking for himself, of course, for he was the only person in the Irish Party he was entitled to speak for—had referred to the precedent of 1898. But the hon. Member on that occasion said he did not attach much importance to his Amendment—which complained of an invasion of the rights of the House of Commons—except on principle. Now the present Amendment from the Lords consisted of two parts. Both of them, 1410 taken separately, made good sense, but, taken together, they made nonsense. The First Lord of the Treasury had himself referred to them as nonsense, but probably the nonsense which came from the House of Lords was very different from the ordinary kind of nonsense. He did not think they could accept the Amendment of the hon. Member for North-East Manchester. If the House of Lords chose to send them a nonsensical Amendment, all the worse for it. Their protest on that side of the House was against any alteration of the Bill. It must be perfectly clear to hon. Members on all sides that the Lords Amendment with the words deleted would consititute a serious charge on the rates, and, on that ground, he should vote against it.
§ MR. GRIFFITH BOSCAWEN () Kent, tunbridge
said he thought the attitude taken up by hon. Members opposite in regard to the Amendment was most unreasonable. They had before them a question of great importance, which had been introduced in another place. It referred to a matter already discussed in that House, to one on which there was a serious difference of opinion, and which he thought they were all anxious to have discussed and decided in a practical spirit at the present stage; yet the Opposition, knowing that there was this important subject to be debated, had begun by asking that certain words should be retained which they admitted had nothing whatever to do with the main question they had to discuss. They evidently wished to retain those words in order to cast a stigma on another place. Surely that was not approaching the question in a practical spirit. There was a most important question as to what repairs were to be paid for by the local authority, and what were to be imposed on the managers. That was a definite issue, and they could not possibly arrive at any sort of reasonable discussion on the question until the words between brackets and underlined had been removed. Hon. Members opposite, however, chose to wasts the time of the House—[Criesof "Oh, oh!"]—Well, it was his opinion that they were wasting the time of the House—in a preliminary discussion upon an Amendment which they admitted was nonsense 1411 and meant nothing. But he would like to point out to the hon. Member who had just spoken that, in his humble opinion, the words as they stood meant something, and that by retaining them they were doing that which he was sure was very far from the intention of the Opposition. They would impose a very serious obligation on the private resources of members of the local authority, for while they declared that damage due to fair wear and tear should be paid for by the local authority they also provided that no additional charge should fall, inconsequence, on public funds, and, therefore if the local authority were to make good those damages without throwing any burden on the public funds they would have to do it out of their private pockets. The result would be to impose upon members of the local authority a large personal obligation which he felt sure it was very far from the desire or intention of hon. Members to impose. He appealed to the House not to delay the discussion on really substantial points in order that they might, by a sort of back door arrangement, inflict a stigma upon the other House. Let them give adequate and proper discussion to the really important point which arose upon this Amendment from the Lords. In order that they might do that the first necessary step was to leave out the words which, if they were not nonsense, bore a meaning which it was far from the intention of hon. Members opposite to import into the Bill.
§ MR. HERBERT SAMUEL () Yorkshire, N. R., Cleveland
, on a point of order, submitted that if the hon. Member who had just spoken had given a correct reading of the effect of the words—if it were right that their retention would throw an obligation on the private resources of members of the education authority, then it involved a form of taxation upon those particular individuals, and not consitute a breach of the privileges of the House.
Order, order! I have already decided that this Amendment does not raise a question of privilege.
§ Lord EDMUND FITZMAURICE () Wiltshire, Cricklade
said the hon. Member for North Louth had alluded to what had happened in the year 1898 in regard to the Irish Local Government Bill. Now, he took some part in the discussions on that Bill, and he spoke ib several occasions on points which were afterwards debated in another place. He could not altogether agree with the whole statement of the hon. Member as to what actually occurred in regard to the Amendments sent down from the Lords. No doubt the hon. Member had stated quite correctly that he himself raised the very point which they were now discussing as to what was done in another place although the view he then took was adverse to the one he was now supporting. The hon. Member used exactly the same arguments on that occasion as had been raised on the present debate, but he had not said anything to show that he was right in declaring the conduct of the Government unjustifiable in 1898, and in now championing exactly similar conduct on the part of the present Government. If the hon. Member thought that the conduct of the Government, when there was no really substantial dispute between both sides of the House and both Houses, was wrong. were they not far more justified in holding it to be wrong when there was a really substantial difference of opinion between the two Houses? The hon. Member had also said not a w single Liberal in 1898 uttered a word of protest, but that they allowed the matter to pass sub silentio. Now, in that he was inaccurate. If the hon. Member had turned over the page of Hansard from which he quoted he would have found a speech by himself—
§ MR. T. M. HEALY
May I remind the noble Lord that the question had already been decided when he spoke. My point of order had already been ruled against me before the noble Lord spoke.
§ LORD EDMUND FITZMAURICE
Both speeches were in the same debate. They are only separated by two columns.
§ MR. T. M. HEALY
No doubt they were in the same debate, but they were on entirely different questions.
§ LORD EDMUND FITZMAURICE
I beg the hon. Member's pardon, they were both on the same point. The hon Member spoke first and I spoke last. It was the same debate, and on that point I challenge contradiction. Continuing, the noble Lord said he would like to ask the House to remember what happened on that occasion. No doubt the precedent, technically speaking, was on all fours up to a certain point. But Mr. Gladstone, who had used this form of procedure himself, said on that occasion that it was a procedure which ought only to be used with the most extreme care and caution, because it contained in itself a possibility of great abuse. Could anyone doubt what Mr. Gladstone was then thinking of was that a procedure which might be perfectly harmless in a case where ther was substantial agreement, might, if it were not carefully watched, be used for other purposes which in 1898 were not present to the mind of the House. That was exactly what was occurring on the present occasion. They were having this machinery used in order to overcome a technical difficulty, but it was being used in reference to a subject which had excited a great amount of feeling, he was almost going to say ill-feeling in the country, and upon which there was a marked difference of opinion between the two sides of the House and the two Houses. He could not help thinking that in this case there had been a most unfortunate use of the precedent. There had been an abuse, too, of the privileges of that House, and by the course they were taking they were seriously endangering the liberties of the House.
§ MR. THEODORE TAYLOR () Lancashire, Radcliffe
said the question of repairs was very small in comparison with the questions of the credit of the House and its power over the public purse which were involved in the Amendment, and there was no question which was more supreme in the history of the English Constitution than that, nor was there one which ought to be more 1414 jealously guarded. It was, in fact, a constitutional question. The question of repairs did not raise a vital principle; it was not a matter on which the future legislation of this country had to depend; it could easily be dealt with in a oneclause Bill before the Education Bill came into operation. But if the Lords Amendment were accepted the result would be that a charge would be levied on the people which would not have been levied if the Bill had remained in the form in which it left the House of Commons. It was said that the Amendment was only a technical means of getting over the difficulty. Was the power of the House over the purse a technicality? They ought to be jealous of the power of the House, and he appealed even to those in favour of the principle of the Amendment not to give the House of Lords the power of initiating taxation. Nothing could so discredit a grave and serious assembly as making its procedure farcical on a very important constitutional point.
said he had hoped that every Member of the House would have appreciated the importance of the constitutional principle involved in this question. Primrose Leaguers, who posed as the peculiar guardians of constitutional liberty, ought to oppose the Amendment that had come from another place, but to Liberals the act of the Upper House appealed with especial force because it cut directly at the privilege which enabled a Liberal Government to get through important measures of domestic reform, like the budget of the right hon. Gentleman the Member for West Monmouthshire, without interference from the other House. It would be admitted that there were not many Liberal bishopsin the other House. There was only one, though he was a real good one. It seemed to him that those Bishops must have thought that in carrying this Amendment they were killing two birds with one stone. They thought they would be altering the constitution to the detriment of the Liberal Party. and also getting considerable pickings for themselves. The whole question was amply and thoroughly discussed in the Amendment of the hon. Member for Gloucestershire, which raised the point of 1415 structural repairs, and was defeated by a very considerable majority. The Bill had been an unconstitutional Bill from the very beginning. I involved taxation without representation, and it could not he denied for a moment that if this Amendment was accepted, an unconstitutional act would have been committed which would be bad for the State, bad for the Liberal Party, and bad for the Democracy which were interested in the fate of the Liberal Party. He hoped the Amendment would be defeated.
§ MR. LLOYD-GEORGE
said he wished to enter his protest against the method in which this question had been introduced. The House of Commons had deliberately refused to throw the burden of wear and tear upon the Councils. The friends of the voluntary schools had carried this Amendment against the Government in the House of Lords, and then, discovering that it was a breach of privilege, had descended to what he could not help describing as an unworthy trick. They introduced words which they knew to be foolish and nugatory, and an insult to the intelligence of both Houses. There was a touch of Jesuitism about the whole proceeding, and he
|Allen, Charles P. (Glouc.,Stroud||Foster, Sir Walter (Derby Co.)||Philipps, John Wynford|
|Ashton, Thomas Gair||Fowler, Rt.Hon. Sir Henry||Pilkington, Lieut.-Col. Richard|
|Atherley-Jones, L.||Fuller, J. M. F.||Rea, Russell|
|Barran. Rowland Hirst||Goddard, Daniel Ford||Rigg, Richard|
|Bayley, Thomas (Derbyshire)||Grant, Corrie||Roberts, John Bryn (Eifion)|
|Bowles, T. Gibson (King's Lynn)||Griffith, Ellis J.||Roberts, John H. (Denbighs.)|
|Brigg, John||Harcourt, Rt.Hon. Sir William||Robertson, Edmund (Dundee)|
|Broadhurst, Henry||Hardie, J. Keir (Merthyr Tydvil||Roe, Sir Thomas|
|Brown, George M. (Edinburgh||Harmsworth, R. Leicester||Rothschild, Hon. Lionel walter|
|Brunner, Sir John Tomlinson||Hayne, Rt.Hon. Charles Seale-||Samuel, Herbert L. (Cleveland)|
|Bryce, Rt.Hon. James||Heime, Norval Watson||Schwann, Charles E.|
|Burns, John||Hobhouse, Rt Hn H (Somerset, E||Shipman, Dr. John G.|
|Cald well, James||Hope, John Deans (Fife, West)||Sinclair, John (Forfarshire)|
|Campbell-Bannerman, Sir H.||Hutton, Alfred E. (Morley)||Smith, Abel H. (Hertford, East)|
|Causton, Richard Knight||Jacoby, James Alfred||Soames, Arthur Wellesley|
|Corbett, T. L. (Down, North)||Kearley, Hudson E.||Soares, Ernest J.|
|Cremer, John William||Layland-Barratt, Francis||Spencer, Rt. Hn. C. R (Northants|
|Crombie, John William||Leese, Sir Joseph F. (Acerington||Stevenson, Francis S.|
|Dalziel, James Henry||Levy, Maurice||Strachey, Sir Edward|
|Davies, Alfred (Carmarthen)||Lloyd-George, David||Taylor, Theodore C. (Radcliffe)|
|Davies, M. Vaughan-(Cardigan||Macnamara, Dr. Thomas J.||Thomas, Abel (Carmarthen, E.)|
|Denny, Colonel||Markham, Arthur Basil||Thomas, Sir A. (Glamorgan, E.)|
|Digby, John K. D. Wingfield-||Middlemore, John Throgmort'n||Thomas, David Alfred (Merthyr|
|Duncan, J. Hastings||Morley, Charles (Breconshire)||Thomas,F. Freeman-(Hastings|
|Edwards, Frank||Newnes, Sir George||Thomson, F. W. (York, W. R.)|
|Elliot, Hon. A. Ralph Douglas||Norman, Henry||Toulmin, George|
|Emmott, Alfred||Norton, Capt, Cecil William||Trevelyan, Charles Philips|
|Evans, Sir Francis H (Maidstone||Nussey, Thomas Willans||Wallace, Robert|
|Evans, Samuel T. (Glamorgan)||Partington, Oswald||Walton, John Lawson (Leeds, S.|
|Faber, George Denison (York)||Paulton, James Mellor||Walton, Joesph (Barnsley)|
|Fitzmaurice, Lord Edmund||Pease, Herbert Pike (Darlingt'n||Warner, Thomas Courtenay T.|
§ was not surprised when he recollected the quarter from which it emanated. He did not think it was fair that the House of Commons should be asked to become accomplices in a trick of this character.
§ MR. PAULTON () Durham, Bishop Auckland
said the First Lord had asked the House to assent to the deletion of these words in order that they should not pass a nonsensical Amendment. He thought he could suggest a better method of dealing with the matter. The House should allow these words to stand, and then vote unanimously against the nonsensical Amendment sent down by the House of Lords. If the House of Commons did not make a protest against what he believed to be an outrage on Parliamentary procedure, it would reflect little credit on the majority of that House for zeal for Parliamentary privileges and the business like and decent conduct of their proceedings.
§ (9.38.) Queation put.
§ The House divided:—Ayes, 104; Noes, 200. (Division list No. 639.)1417
|Wason, Eugene (Clackmannan||Whittakr, Thomas Palmer||TELLERS FOR THE AYES—|
|Mr. Herbert Gladstone and Mr. Wm. M'Arthur.|
|Weir, James Galloway||Wilson, Fred. W. (Norfolk, Mid.|
|White George (Norfolk)||Wilson,HenryJ.(York, W.R.)|
|Whiteley,George(York, W.R.)||Wilson, John (Durham, Mid.)|
|W'hitley', J. H. (Halifax)||Yoxall, James Henry|
|Abraham,William(Cork, N. E.)||Finlay, Sir Robert Bannatyne||Murnaghan, George|
|Agg-Gardner, James Tynte||Fisher, William Hayes||Murphy, John|
|Ambrose, Rubert||Fison, Frederick William||Murray, Rt Hn A. Graham (Bute|
|Anson, Sir William Reynell||Fitzroy, Hon. Edward Algernon||Murray, Charles J. (Coventry)|
|Arkwright, John Stanhope||Flannery, Sir Fortescue||Myers, William Henry|
|Arnold-Korster, Hugh ().||Flavin, Michael Joseph||Nannetti, Joseph P.|
|Arrol, Sir William||Fletcher, Rt Hon. Sir Henry||Nolan, Col. John P. (Galway, N.)|
|Atkinson, Rt.Hon. John||Fower, Ernest||Nolan, Joseph (Louth, South)|
|Bailey, James (Walworth)||Flynn, James Christopher||O'Brien, James, F. X. (Cork)|
|Bain, Colonel James Robert||Forster, Hegry William||O'Brien, Kendal (Tipperary Mid|
|Balcarres. Lord||Galloway, William Johnson||O'Brien, Patrick (Kilkenny)|
|Baldwin. Alfred||Garfit, William||O' Brien, P. J. (Tipperary, N.)|
|Balfour, Rt.Hon.A. J.(Manch'r||Gilhooly, James||O'Brien, William (Cork)|
|Balfour, Capt. C. B. (Hornsey)||Godson, Sir Augustus Frederick||O'Connor, James (Wicklow, W.|
|Balfour, RtHn. Gerald W(Leeds||Gordon, Maj Evans-(T'rH'ml'ts||O'Connor, T. P. (Liverpool)|
|Banbury, Sir Frederick George||Goschen, Hon. George Joachim||O'Doherty, William|
|Bartley, Sir George ('. T.||Gray, Ernest (West Ham)||O'Donnell, T. (Kerry, W.)|
|Bathurst, Hon. Allen Benjamin||Greene, Sir EW (B'ryS. Edm'nds||O'Dowd, John|
|Bignold, Arthur||Grenfell, William Henry||O'Kelly, James (Roscommon, N|
|Bigwood, James||Halsey, Rt.Hon. Thomas F.||O'Malley, William|
|Blundell, Colonel Henry||Hammond, John||O'Mara, James|
|Boltnd, John||Harrington, Timothy||O'Shaughnessy, P. J.|
|Bond, Edward||Hatch, Ernest Frederick Geo.||O'Shee, James John|
|Boscawen, Arthur Grittith||Hayden, John Patrick||Palmer, Walter (Salisbury)|
|Bouslield, William Robert||Healy, Timothy Michael||Percy, Earl|
|Brodrick, lit. Hon. St. John||Hickman, Sir Alfred||Platt-Higgins, Frederick|
|Bullard, Sir Harry||Hope, J. F. (Sheffield, Brightside||Plummer, Walter R.|
|Burke, E. Haviland||Hudson, George Bickersteth||Powell, Sir Francis Sharp|
|Campbell, John (Armagh. S.)||Hutton, John (Yorks, N. R.)||Power, Patrick, Joseph|
|Carson, Rt.Hon. Sir Edw.H.||Jordan, Jeremiah||Pretvman, Ernest George|
|Cavendish, V.C.W.(Derbyshire||Joyce, Michael||Purvis, Robert|
|Cecil, Evelyn (Aston Manor)||Kennaway, Rt. Hn. Sir John H.||Ratcliff, R. F.|
|Cecil, Lord Hugh (Greenwich)||Kennedy, Patrick James||Redmond, John E. (Waterford|
|Chapman, Edward||Kenyon, Hon. Geo. T. (Denbigh)||Ridley, Hon M. W. (Hackney)|
|Clancy, John Joseph||Kenyon-Slaney, Col. W. (Salop||Robertson, Herbert (Hackney)|
|Clare, Octavius Leigh||keswick, William||Royds, Clement Molyneux|
|Clive, Captain Percy A.||Kimber, Henry||Rutherford, John|
|Cochrane, Hon. Thos. H. A. E.||King, Sir Henry Seymour||Sackville, Col. S. G. Stopford-|
|'Cogan, Denis J.||Knowles, Lees||Seely, Charles Hilton (Lincoln|
|Cohen, Benjamin Louis||Langley, Batty||Sharpe, William Edward T.|
|Colomb, Sir. John Charles Ready||Law, Andrew Bonar (Glasgow||Sheehan, Daniel Daniel|
|Colston, Chas. Edw. H. A thole||Lawrence, Sir Joseph (Monm'th||Skewes-Cox, Thomas|
|Condon, Thomas Joseph||Lawson, John Grant||Smith, HC (North mb. Tyneside|
|Cox, Irwin Edward Bainbridge||Leamy, Edmund||Stanley, Edward Jas. (Somerset)|
|Cranborne, Viscount||Lecky, Rt. Hn. William Edw. H.||Stone, Sir Benjamin|
|Crean, Eugene||Legge, Col. Hon. Heneage||Strutt, Hon. Charles Hedley|
|Crossley, Sir Savile||Leigh-Bennett, Henry Currie||Sullivan, Donal|
|Cullinan. J.||Lockie, John||Talbot, Lord E. (Chichester)|
|Dalrymple, Sir Charles||Lock wood, Lt.-Col. A. R.||Talbot, Rt Hn. J. G. (Oxf'd Univ.|
|Delany, William||Loder, Gerald Walter Erskine||Thompson, Dr. EC (Monagh'n, N|
|Dickson, Charles Scott||Long, Col. Charles W. (Evesham||Thornton, Percy M.|
|Dimsdale, Rt.Hon. Sir. Joseph C.||Long, Rt.Hn Walter (Bristol, S.||Tomlinson, Sir Wm. Edw. M.|
|Dixon-Hartland, SirFredDixon||Loyd, Archie Kirkman||Tully, Jasper|
|Doogan. P. C.||Lucas, Col. Francis (Lowestoft||Valentia, Viscount|
|Dorington, Rt.Hon. Sir John E.||Lucas, Reginald J. (Portsmouth||Wanklyn, James Leslie|
|Doughty, George||Lundon, W.||Welby, Lt-Col A. C. E. (Taunton|
|Douglas, Rt.Hon. A. Akers-||MacDonnell, Dr. Mark A.||Welby, Sir Charles G. E. (Notts.|
|Doxford, Sir William Theodore||Maconochie, A. W.||Wharton, Rt.Hon. John Lloyd|
|Duffy. William J.||MacVeagh, Jeremiah||White, Patrick (Meath, North|
|Duke, Henry Edward||M'Govern, T.||Whiteley, H (Ashton-und-Lyne|
|Dyke, Rt.Hon. Sir William Hart||M'Kean, John||Willox, Sir John Archibald|
|Egerton. Hon. A.de Tatton||M'Killop, James (Stirlingshire||Wilson A Stanley (York E. R.)|
|Esmonde, Sir Thomas||M'Killop, W. (Sligo, North)||Worsley-Taylor, Henry Wilson|
|Fellowes, Hon. Ailwyn Edward||Mildmay, Francis Bingham||Wrightson, Sir Thomas|
|Fergusson Rt.Hn. Sir J.(Mane'r||Milvain, Thomas||Wyndham, Rt.Hon. George|
|Ffrench,Peter||Mooney, John J.|
|Field, William||More Robt. Jasper (Shropshire)|
|Finch, Rt.Hon. Gleorge H.||Morrell, George Herbert|
§ MR. ERNEST GRAY () West Ham, N.
said he wished to move an addition to the Amendment before the House, in order to provide that when the cost of maintaining the school was transferred to the new authorities, the schools should first be placed by the managers in a sound, healthy, sanitary condition. The Amendment left the matter very much in doubt as to which body would have to put the schools into a good condition. He, therefore, wished to add—Provided also that the managers shall place the school-house in such state of good repair as may be satisfactory to the local authority, before any payment in respect to repairs is made by the authority.
In order to make that relevant to this particular Amendment it must not relate to repairs generally.
§ MR. ERNEST GRAY
said he was not wedded to his form of words, and he would move the Amendment in the form suggested by Mr. Speaker.
Amendment proposed to the Lords Admendment:—
After the last Amendment, to insert the words 'and provided also that the managers shall place the said school house in such state of good repair as may be satisfactory to the local edution authority before any liability in respect of such damage is incurred by such authority.'
§ Question put, "That those words be there inserted in the Lords Amendment."
said the Amendment moved illustrated how very large a question was raised by these Amendments in respect to what was a very small matter. The whole proposal of the Lords Amendment was that there should be an allowance made in respect to any damage due to fair wear and tear by the use of the building as a public elementary school, and the fair wear and tear by the Amendment accepted by this House was to be assessed by the authority. The discussion that had arisen was out of all proportion to the question with which they were dealing. If the Lords proposal had been that the local authority should assume the liability of the managers with regard to all repairs of the premises, he could understand it, but under the circumstances he submitted that the Amendment showed a lack of all pro- 1420 portion, and therefore it should not be accepted by the House.
§ MR. BRYCE
expressed great surprise that the hon. Gentleman should have stated that this was a small matter, seeing that it involved a difference of £350,000 a year to the ratepayers. Under those circumstances the Attorney General could not say that this raised a small question, for it was one of the largest questions which the House had had to deal with. As questions might arise as to how much wear and tear in the buildings was due to something which had taken place before the schools were taken over, it was quite right that provision should be made that they should be taken over in good condition. He rather expected, when the Attorney General rose, that he was going to accept this Amendment, because if they wanted to prevent these troublesome questions from arising, and if they were desirous of starting the local authority and the managers upon good relations they should put the local authority in possession of those buildings in a thorough state of repair, and calculate the damage by the wear and tear from the buildings over. He thought this Amendment deserved the support of the House.
§ MR BOUSFIELD
thought it was not necessary to provide against the state of things which the hon. Member opposite had in his mind, because all those who had had to do with agreements involving questions of wear and tear knew that these questions had to be determined with reference to the wear and tear of the buildings from the start. In the case of a dwelling it always meant the state of repair when the house was taken over. They never could be liable for these repairs, because they had only got to do with deterioration and damage caused by wear and tear in regard to the state of things when the schools were taken over. He agreed that the buildings should be put in the best possible state of repair, but the liability of the local authority to put them in a proper state of repair in the first instance did not necessarily arise now,
§ (9.58.) Question put.
§ The House divided:—Ayes, 112; Noes, 233. (Division List, No. 640.)
|Allen, Charles P., Gloue, (Stroud||Hayne, Rt.Hon. Charles Seale-||Royds, Clement Molyneux|
|Ashton, Thomas Gair||Helme, Norval Watson||Samuel, Herbert L. (Cleveland)|
|Atherley-Jones, L.||Hope, John Deans (Fife, West)||Schwann, Charles E.|
|Balfour, Capt. C. B. (Hornsey)||Hutton, Alfred E. (Morley)||Shipman, Dr. John G.|
|Barran, Rowland Hirst||Jacoby, James Alfred||Sinclair, John (Forfarshire)|
|Bayley, Thomas (Derbyshire)||Kearley, Hudson E.||Soames, Arthur Wellesley|
|Brigg, John||Langley, Batty||Soares, Ernest J.|
|Broadhurst, Henry||Layland-Barratt, Francis||Spear, John Ward|
|Brown, George M. (Edinburgh)||Lecky, Rt Hn. William Edw. H.||Spencer, Rt Hn. C. R. (Northants|
|Brunner, Sir John Tomlinson||Leese, Sir Joseph F. (Accrington||Stevenson, Francis S.|
|Bryce, Rt.Hon. James||Leigh, Sir Joseph||Strachey, Sir Edward|
|Burns, John||Leigh-Bennett, Henry Currie||Taylor, Theodore C. (Radcliffe)|
|Caldwell, James||Levy, Maurice||Thomas, Abel (Carmarthen, E|
|Campbell-Bannerman, Sir H.||Lloyd-George, David||Thomas, Sir A. (Glamorgan, E|
|Causton, Richard Knight||Lough, Thomas||Thomas, David Alfred (Merthyr|
|Corbett, T, L, (Down, North)||Macnamara, Dr. Thomas J.||Thomas, F. Freeman-(Hastings|
|Cremer, William Randal||M'Arthur, William (Cornwall)||Thomas, J. A (Glamorgan, Gower|
|Crombie, John William||M'Kenna, Reginald||Thomson, F. W. (York, W. R.|
|Dalziel, James Henry||Markham, Arthur Basil||Thoulmin, George|
|Davies, Alfred (Carmarthen)||Middlemore John Throgmort'n||Trevelyan, Charles Philips|
|Davies, M. Vaughan-(Cardigan)||Mildmay, Francis Bingham||Wallace, Robert|
|Davies, Rt.Hon. Sir Charles||Morley, Charles (Breconshire)||Walton, John Lawson (Leeds, S.)|
|Duncan, J. Hastings||Newnes, Sir George||Walton, Joseph (Barnsley)|
|Edwards, Frank||Norman, Henry||Warner, Thomas Courtenay T.|
|Emmott, Alfred||Norton, Capt. Cecil William||Wason, Eugene (Clackmannan)|
|Evans, Sir Francis H. (Maidst'ne||Nussey, Thomas Willans||Weir, James Galloway|
|Evans, Samuel T. (Glamorgan)||Partington, Oswald||White, George (Norfolk)|
|Fitzmaurice, Lord Edmond||Paulton, James Mellor||Whiteley, George (York, W. R.)|
|Foster, Sir Walter (Derby Co.)||Pemberton, John S. G.||Whitley, J. H. (Halifax)|
|Fowler, Rt.Hon. Sir Henry||Perks, Robert Willam||Whittaker, Thomas Palmer|
|Gladstone, Rt Hn. Herbert John||Philipps, John Wynford||Wilson, Fred. W. (Norfolk, Mid.|
|Goddard, Daniel Ford||Rea, Russell||Wilson, Henry J. (York, W. R.)|
|Grant, Corrie||Reckitt, Harold James||Wilson, John (Durham, Mid.)|
|Grey, Rt.Hon. Sir E. (Berwick)||Rickett, J. Compton||Yoxall, James Henry|
|Griffith, Ellis J.||Rigg, Richard|
|Guest, Hon. Ivor Churchill||Roberts, John Bryn (Eifion)|
|Harcourt, Rt.Hon. Sir William||Roberts, John H. (Denbighs.)||TELLERS FOR THE AYES—|
|Hardie, J. Keir (Merthyr Tydvil||Robertson, Edmund (Dundee)||Mr. Ernest Gray and Mr. Fuller.|
|Harmsworth, R. Leicester||Roe, Sir Thomas|
|Abraham, William (Cork, N. E.)||Carew, James Laurence||Dorington, Rt.Hon. Sir John E.|
|Agg-Gardner, James Tynte||Carson, Rt.Hon. Sir Edw. H.||Doughty, George|
|Agnew, Sir Andrew Noel||Cavendish, V. C. W. (Derbyshire||Douglas, Rt.Hon. A. Akers-|
|Ambrose, Robert||Cecil, Evelyn (Aston Manor)||Doxford, Sir William Theodore|
|Anson, Sir William Reynell||Cecil, Lord Hugh (Green wich)||Duffy, William J.|
|Arkwright, John Stanhope||Chamberlain, Rt Hn J. A (Wore.||Duke, Henry Edward|
|Arnold-Forster, Hugh O.||Chapman, Edward||Dyke, Rt. Hn. Sir William Hart|
|Arrol, Sir William||Clancy, John Joseph||Elliot, Hon. A. Ralph Douglas|
|Atkinson, Rt.Hon. John||Clare, Octavius Leigh||Esmonde, Sir Thomas|
|Bailey, James (Walworth)||Clive, Captain Percy A.||Eaber, Edmund B. (Hants, W.)|
|Bain, Colonel James Robert||Cochrane, Hon. Thos. H. A. E.||Faber, George Denison (York)|
|Balcarres, Lord||Cogan, Denis J.||Fellowes, Hon. Ailwyn Edward|
|Baldwin, Alfred||Cohen, Benjamin Louis||Fergusson, Rt Hn. Sir J (Manc'r|
|Balfour, Rt. Hn. A. J. (Manch'r||Colomb, Sir John Charles Ready||Ffrench, Peter|
|Balfour, Rt Hn Gerald W. (Leeds||Colston, Chas, Edw. H. Athole||Field, William|
|Banbury, Sir George C. T.||Condon, Thomas Joseph||Finlay, Sir Robert Bannatyne|
|Bathurst, Hon. Allen Benjamin||Cox, Irwin Edward Bainbridge||Fisher, William Hayes|
|Bignold, Arthur||Cranborne, Viscount||Fison, Frederick William|
|Bigwood, James||Crean, Eugene||Fitzroy, Hon. Edward Algernon|
|Blundell, Colonel Henry||Crossley, Sir Savile||Flannery, Sir Fortescue|
|Boland, John||Cullinan, J.||Flavin, Michael Joseph|
|Bond, Edward||Dalrymple, Sir Charles||Fletcher, Rt.Hon. Sir Henry|
|Boseawen, Arthur Griffith-||Delany, William||Flower, Ernest|
|Bousfield, William Robert||Denny, Colonel||Flynn, James Christopher|
|Bowles, T. Gibson (King's Lynn||Dickson, Charles Scott||Forster, Henry William|
|Brodrick, Rt.Hon. St. John||Digby, John K. D. Wingfield-||Galloway, William Johnson|
|Burke, E. Haviland-||Dimsdale, Rt.Hon. Sir Joseph C.||Garfit, William|
|Butcher, John George||Dixon-Hartland, Sir Fred Dixon||Gilhooly, James|
|Campbell, John (Armagh, S.)||Doogan, P. C.||Godson, Sir Augustus Frederick|
|Gordon,MajEvans-(T'rH'mlets)||Macartney, RtHn. W. G. Ellison||Redmond, John E. (Waterford)|
|Goschen, Hon. George Joachim||MacDonnell, Dr. Mark A.||Ridley, Hon M. W.(Stalybridge)|
|Greene, Henry D.(Shrewsbury)||Maconochie, A. W.||Ridley, S. Forde(Bethnal Green)|
|Grenfell, William Henry||Mac Veagh, Jeremiah||Robertson, Herbert (Hackney)|
|Hall, Edward Marshall||M'Arthur, Charles (Liverpool)||Round, Rt.Hon. James|
|Halsey, Rt.Hon. Thomas F.||M' Fadden, Edward||Rutherford, John|
|Hammond, John||M' Govern, T.||Sackville, Col. S. G. Stopford-|
|Harrington, Timothy||M' Kean, John||Seely, Charles Hilton (Lincoln)|
|Hatch, Ernest Frederick Geo.||M' Killop,James(Stirlingshire)||Sharpe, William Edward T.|
|Hay, Hon. Claude George||M' Killop, W. (Sligo, North)||Sheehan, Daniel Daniel|
|Hayden, John Patrick||Milvain, Thomas||Skewes-Cox, Thomas|
|Healy, Timothy Michael||Mooney, John J.||Smith, Abel H.(Hertford, East)|
|Hickman, Sir Alfred||More, Robt. Jasper(Shropshire)||Smith, HC(North'mb. Tvneside)|
|Hobhouse, RtHn H(Somers't, E.)||Morrell, George Herbert||Smith, James Parker (Lanarks)|
|Hope,J. F.(Sheffield,Brightside)||Mureaghan, George||Smith, Hon. W. F. D. (Strand)|
|Hoult, Joseph||Murphy, John||Spencer, Sir E. (W. Bromwich)|
|Howard,J.(Midd.,Tottenham)||Murray,Rt. HnAGraham(Bute)||Stanley Edward Jas. (Somerset)|
|Hudson, George Bickersteth||Murray, Charles J. (Coventry)||Stone, Sir Benjamin|
|Hutton, Johh (Yorks, N. R.)||Myers, Will am H nry||Strutt, Hon. Charles Hedley|
|Jessel, Captain Herbert Merton||Nannetti, Joseph P.||Sullivan, Donal|
|Johnstone, Heywood||Notan,Col. John P.(Galway, N.)||Talbot, Lord E. (Chichester)|
|Jordon, Jeremiah||Nolan, Joseph (Louth, South)||Talbot, RtHon J.G. (Oxf'd Univ.)|
|Joyce, Michael||O' Beien, J mes F. X. (Cork)||Taylor, Austin (East Toxteth)|
|Kemp, George||O'Brien, Kendal(T'pp'rary, Mid)||Thompson,Dr EC (Monagh'n, N)|
|Kennaway,Rt, Hon. Sir John H.||O'Brien, Patrick (Kilkenny)||Thornton, Percy M.|
|Kennedy, Patrick James||O'Brien, P. J. (Tipperary, N.)||Tollemache, Henry James|
|Kenyon,Hon. Geo. T.(Denbigh)||O'Brien, William (Cork)||Tomlinson, Sir Wm. Edw. M.|
|Kenyon-Staney,Col. W.(Salop.)||O'Connor,James (W cklow,W.)||Tritton, Charles Ernest|
|Keswick, William||O'Connor, T. P. (Liverpool)||Tully, Jasper|
|Kimber, Henry||O'Dohe ty, William||Valentia, Viscount|
|King, Sir Henry Seymour||O'Donnell, T. (Kerry, W.)||Wanklyn, James Leslie|
|Knowles, Lecs||O'Dowd, John||Welby, Lt.-Col. A.C.E(Taunton)|
|Law, Andrew Bonar (Glasgow)||O'Ke ly,James (Rosecommon,N)||Welby,Sir Charles G.E.(Notts.)|
|Lawrence,SirJoesph(Monm'th)||O Malley. William||Wharton, Rt.Hon. John Lloyd|
|Lawson, John Grant||O'Maca, James||White, Patrick (Meath, North)|
|Leamy, Edmund||O'Sir ugh essy, P. J.||Whiteley, H (Ashton-und-Lyne)|
|Lee, ArthurH(Hants.,Fareham)||O'Shee, James John||Willoughby de Eresby, Lord|
|Lees, Sir Elliott (Birkenhead)||Palmer, Walter(Salisbury)||Willox,Sir John Archibald|
|Legge, Col. Hon. Heneage||Pease HerbertPike(Darlingt'n)||Wilson, A. Stanley (York, E.R.)|
|Lockie, John||Percy, Earl||Wodehouse,Rt. Hn. E.R. (Bath)|
|Lock wood, Lt. Col. A. R.||Pilkmgton,Lieut.-Col. Richard||Worsley-Taylor. Henry Wilson|
|Loder Gerald Walter Erskine||Plart- Higgins, Frederick||Wortley, Rt.Hon. C. B. Stuart-|
|Long, Col. Charles W. (Evesham)||Plummer, Walter R.||Wrightson, Sir Thomas|
|Long, RtHn. Walter (Bristol, S.)||Powell, Sir Francis Sharp||Wyndham, Rt, Hon. George|
|Lowe, Francis William||Power, Patrick Joseph||Yerburgh, Robert Armstong|
|Loyd, Archie Kirkman||Pretymen, Ernest George|
|Lucas, Col. Francis (Lowestoft)||Pryce-Jones, Lt.-Col. Edward||TELLERS FOR THE NOES — Sir Alexander Acland-Hood and Mr. Anstruther.|
§ SIR JAMES FERGUSSON
moved that this House do agree with the Lords Amendment as amended. He was interrupted in his remarks some hours ago by an hon. Member who had an Amendment to move in the early part of the debate. As he had had several opportunities of speaking on this subject in the course of the Committee Stage of this Bill, he should be very sorry at this hour of the night to trouble the House at any length, but the matter was of such importance that he thought it was incumbent upon him to make out a case to show why the House should be asked to agree with the Lords Amendment. Since this matter had been discussed in parliament, a great deal of new light had been thrown upon 1424 it Few of them were aware when the Bill was introduced how greatly the position of the voluntary schools would be damaged by the restrictions and burdens thrown upon them by this Bill. The Bishop of Manchester was reported to have moved the Amendment which was now before them, and he was sure that if the hon. Member for the Barnstaple Division had known the right rev. Prelate as he was privileged to do, he would have ackonwledged him to be one of the most liberal and broad-minded men, who was devoted earnestly to his duty, and who had at heart the preservation of the schools. He had no doubt that the Bishop of Manchester placed his case before the other House in terms which 1425 deeply impressed the minds of the Peers, and induced a considerable majority of them to vote against the Government. It was quite true that voluntary schools were doing their share in advancing the education of this country, and they were not, as some Members opposite appeared to think, of an inferior character, but many of them were of a very efficient kind. In Manchester the amount per head earned by the children in examination was actually greater in voluntary schools than in board schools. It showed that the managers of those schools had worked them up to a high state of efficiency. Hitherto thoseschools had been provided for by the managers out of the funds placed at their disposal, and they had been kept up not withstanding the competition of the board schools. Those School had been kept up at a great sacrifice. [An HON. MEMBER: Speak up!] He was not going to trouble the House with figures and quotations, but there were many cases where the voluntary subscriptions were not equal to the annual cost of repairs. No doubt in the future the repairs fo these schools would be more than they had been in the past. Taking an average of the cost of repairs per child in many large towns such as Birmingham, Hull, Bradford, Liverpool, and other places, the cost per child would not about 2s. 6d. for repairs, whilst the voluntary subscriptions would not amount to so much. In that case the result would be that many of those schools would have to be given up. Of course he knew that many hon. Members opposite maintained that the schools attached to religious denominations and giving definite religious education should be discontinued. But that was not the scheme of the Bill of 1870, and it was not the scheme of the present Bill. on the contrary, the country had given proofs of its attachment to the voluntary system, because after all these years the fact remained that a majority of the children were educated in them. It was too late to go back upon that, and it was not worthy of the opponents of the voluntary system that they should wish to ensure the more repid extension of one system at the expense of another. He could not see the justice of so handicapping these schools that they would be starved out of existence or be kept up 1426 in a struggling manner. He could not see that because religious instruction was given in them they should be placed in an inferior position to schools where the religion was colourless or of a general character. He did not care what trouble or odium he incurred, even if for a moment he was unfaithful to his Party if it was necessary in the discharge of what he believed to be his duty. He did not believe this House would stand on its privileges in such a matter as this. He made an earnest appeal to the Prime Minister, who, he was sure, wished to do what was right. He believed this Amendment brought home to the right hon. Gentleman in a manner which had not before been done how grievous would be the effect of the Bill as it formerly stood with respect to the prospects of voluntary schools in populous and poor places. It was not a question of the country districts where there might be a wealthy squire, and where it would be easy to keep up the local school. For the sake of the poor people in populous places who desired that their children should receive this kind of education he asked the House to accept the Amendment. He moved that this House do agree with the Lords Amendment.
§ Motion made and Question proposed, "That this House doth agree with the Lords in the said Amendment as a mended."—(Sir James Fergusson.)
§ SIR H. CAMPBELL - BANNERMAN
I have great hopes that the House will disagree with the Lords Amendment as amended. I hung back a little in the expectation and the hope that the Leader of the House might have at once risen to say what course the Government intend to take in this matter. For reasons, however, which I shall by and by state I do not see how they can take any but one course in regard to this Amendment consistently with what has happened in the past. There are two separte reasons why, in my opinion, the House should reject this Amendment— two separate reasons based on two separate orders of things. There is first of all the constitutional point affecting the dignity and rights of this House, and there are the questions which arise on the merits of the subject matter of the Amendment. We have 1427 heard a great deal to-night about this extraordinary proceeding to which the House of Commons has been subjected on this occasion, but something more, surely, must be said about it. I have already spoken of it as having been farcical and absurd and grotesque. But this is something more than that. It has a grotesque exterior appearance, but in its heart, au fond, it is a heavy blow dealt at the rights of this House, which are, after all, nothing more nor less than the rights of the general community of the taxpayers of this country. The reason we stand up for the rights of the House of Commons is not because of our pride in the body with which we ourselves are connected. It is not from any feeling of vanity or self-satisfaction that we may entertain as members of this House; it is because our privileges represent the privileges of the people of this country, and what we have seen on this occasion—I suppose the story must be recited again, although it is not a creditable one—is that an Amendment was introduced in the House of Lords and opposed by the Government of the day, and that it was carried against all the efforts of the Government of theday— an Amendment imposing a charge upon public funds. There is no question that the action of the Lords was an infringement of the privileges of this House. There is no one on either side of the House who will say that it was not an infringement of the privileges of the House. I can conceive it possible—in fact there have been many cases of it—that when this House was informed that a certain Amendment proposed in another place was an infringement of its privileges the House in its wisdom might waive its privileges and consider the Amendment. I do not sav that might not be done in this case. That was a course which could have been pursued. It is a straightforward course, perfectly intelligible, and in accordance with precedent. Instead of that it has been thought right to smuggle this into the House and to induce the House by its own action to remove the absurd words which had been added to the Clause, and thus, by its own action, not only to make this House responsible for what has been done in another place, but to take away from the Amendment its character of a 1428 breach of privilege. That is the course which the right hon. Gentleman recommends the House to take now, Surely, on the ground alone of the way the, House has been dealt with in this matter, I think it is only due to its dignity and to the maintenance of its rights that the House should decline to pass the Amendment, even if it were as good as in its nature it is bad. I will say no more on that question, for no multiplication of words will make the case any stronger.
Now I come to the merits of the Amendment itself. The right hon. Gentleman has gone over the whole story. He has discerned in the people of this country a desire for voluntary schools. We have nothing to do with that just now. We do not require to open the whole question on this occasion. What we have to do with is what has happened with regard to this particular Amendment. This particular proposal is that the public should undertake the cost of the wear and tear and the repair of these schools. There is no question about it. When the Bill was introduced we were told what was the foundation of the arrangement between the friends of the voluntary schools and the friends of what I would say are the democratic schools—the undenominational schools if you like to call them so. I speak especially of the Church of England schools, which have been maintained with great difficulty by friends who subscribed to support them, and who found that it was no longer possible to bear the burden put upon them. They agreed that the country should have the use of the schools, in which they claim some sort of property, on condition that the maintenance of the schools was to be put upon the public rates. On the ground of that arrangement they were to have a preponderating proportion of authority on the managing body that was established. In July last the right hon. Gentleman the Member for the Tewkesbury Division moved an Amendment substantially to the same effect as this—namely, that it should be the structural repairs only for which the managers were to be responsible. That was opposed by the Government. The Attorney General said that good repair included all the repairs necessary 1429 to adapt the buildings for the purposes for which they were required, and that the Government would adhere to the words of the Bill, throwing the responsibility on the managers to do all that was necessary to keep the buildings in a suitable condition. He stated that you could not dissect the repairs and separate one kind of repair from another. The hon. and learned Gentleman the Member for the Stretford Division supported the Attorney General in this matter. When the House went to a division, only thirty-five Members suppoted the Amendment, while three hundred and thirty-seven, or nearly ten to one, voted against it. Have the church and the Church schools become poorer since that time? Has it been discovered that there is some dreadful escape from which their money runs away and which requires to be filled up? Not at all. Since then they have received, in their share fees, in endowments, and in rents of school houses, large subsidies, the exact value of which it is very difficult to calculate, but which I have been told by experts may be put down at the moderate figure of at least£150,000 a year. [An HON. MEMBER: "It is more."] It may be more, but I put it at a low figure. I have taken some trouble to find out, and I believe that no expert puts it at less than that. I take the lowest. The Church therefore is so much the richer, and what would the Church gain if this Amendment were to become law? The right hon. Gentleman deprecated anything being said which would be derogatory to the character or disposition in this matter of the Bishop of Manchester. No one, I am sure, would wish to say a single word of disrespect of a man who is so universally regarded both by Members of his own communion and of others; but he is the author of this Amendment, and he has himself estimated the gain at£350,000 a year. Add to that amount£150,000, and you get£500,000 a year which is given to the Church schools in relief of the obligation they were taking on their own part when this Bill was introduced. I have been at some trouble to look up what has been paid on account of these schools, and I find from the report of the National Society of 1901 that the expenditure on voluntary school buildings since 1811 amounted to £14,500,000. But the capitalised value at 1430 3 per cent, of £500,000 a year would come to £16,500,000. I think that is enough to show the absolute unfairness of those interested in theAmendment.
Now I come to the attitude of His Majesty's Government. As I said when I began, I expected the right hon. Gentleman to state what the view of the Government, but I have not much doubt as to what their course should be, because not only did they, through the Attorney General oppose an Amendment to this same effect when it was originally proposed by the right hon. Gentleman the Member for the Tewkesbury Division, but in the House of Lords the Duke of Devonshire took the same course with regard to this Amendment. He deprecated it, and he enumerated all those subsidies which had been given. He said that they must not disturb the balance further, and that it would never do to entertain such a proposal. Accordingly the Government Whips in the other place were put on, but although it was a Gobernment division they contrived to get themselves beaten.
§ SIR H. CAMPBELL-BANNERMAN
I do not mean when I say "contrived" to suggest any sinister plan. I mean that the Government so managed, or perhaps I should say mismanaged, their affairs that they were beaten. These are the circumstances in which we are now invited, not withstanding the curious manner in which the matter is brought before us and the way in which our rights and privileges have been dealt with, to make this great concession which we refused before at a time when the concessions relating to fees and endowments had not been given. I do not see how the Government can do anything in consistency with their previous declarations except to oppose the Motion of the right hon. Gentleman. All the arguments he used today were used on that occasion and were rejected by the House. There might be occasions when the House would go back on a previous decision. If the situation had been altered as against the Church schools that might have been done, but everything that has happened since then 1431 has been an alteration in favour of the Church schools. It is in these circumstances that we are asked to reverse the decision of July last. I think these are arguments enough to justify us by a large majority expressing our disagreement with this Amendment.
(10.43.) MR. A. J. BALFOUE
The right hon. Gentleman seemed to pass some criticism, I will not say blame, upon me for not rising immediately to indicate the line the Government propose to take upon this Amendment. If I had thought the House required information on that point I should have risen to give it, but I have, in the clearest way and on more than one occasion during the debates we have had in the earlier stages of this Amendment, indicated to the House that so far as the Government are concerned we propose to leave this an open question. There have certainly been a great many statements made by the right hon. Gentleman from which I profoundly dissent. I dissent from his theory of privilege. He did not dwell upon it at great length, but he spoke with great emphasis, and almost indicated to this House that we were doing a great injury to ourselves by permitting ourselves to discuss perfectly, freely, and unhampered by any exterior influence, a question which we are greatly interested in. To say that we are bound in our own interest not to do what some Members of the House very much want to do, is, I think, a preposterous and untenable theory. With regard to the question as to the method that has been pursued. I can assure the right hon. Gentleman that all that has been done is in accordance with precedent, and perfectly constitutional. I have looked into this matter, and I find, no doubt, that there have been cases in which the House has dealt with far stronger cases of interference with the privileges we have got. They have been dealt with by a deliberate waiver of our privileges. My own delief is that it is not in the interest of this House to make it quite impossible for us to reconsider any question, whatever large lines of policy it may touch, whatever the interest it may affect, because the imposition of a rate or a tax is involved. To make it impossible for the House of Lords to 1432 make any alteration in a measure of this kind, and to preclude the House of Commons by that fact from ever dealing, with the question again, is, in my opinion, not in the interest of the legislature as a whole, and certainly not in the interest of the House of Commons. I am quite satisfied that the course taken is not inconsistent with the practice which this House has followed. We had. a discussion this afternoon, which I will, not repeat, as to the precedent of 1898. That precedent was perfectly clear; that precedent points back to preceding precedents, and I do not see how you could have a clearer parallel to the course that is now being adopted than, the precedent of 1898. It is perfectly true, and it appears to have offended some hon. Gentlemen very much, that there is in this, as in all these other cases, something in the nature of a method in getting round the strict privileges of the House of Commons. Of course, that is not denied. The right hon. Gentleman talked of it as a trick. There is no trick inthe matter. It is a perfectly plain and open method, often followed in the past, by which the House is enabled to reconsider questions if it desires, to do so. We are not compelled in any way to adopt the Amendment; we may kick the whole thing out with contempt; but this is a method by which the House regains a certain measure of liberty in regard to matters in which it is greatly interested; and I cannot understand, how anyone acquainted with constitutional development and procedure can seriously object to the course we have adopted.
I pass from that to the concrete merits of the proposal. I do not think I will be asked to say much on these, but this much I must say. The hon. Member for Carnarvon Boroughs, and the right hon. Gentleman who has just sat down, talked as if there had been a bond, a bargain, a financial arrangement, if; not put down in black and white, at all events, made in most specific terms, between those who framed the Bill and the ecclesiastical authorities to whom the Bill applies. That is not the fact. After all, nobody can speak with more authority than can and I say deliberately that the whole thing is a dream, a, delusion, and is all based on imagination.
1433 The Government brought forward the Bill in a certain shape. In a general way it was accepted and approved of by large sections of the community, including the managers of the voluntary schools; but that did not preclude Amendments being made in this or in the other House if these Amendments were in order. There was no contract; no kind of arrangement made with the ecclesiastical authorities. That is my first observation upon the Amendment. My second observation is this. For my own part, I did not realise in every respect the financial aspects of this Bill. I did not appreciate how much of the charge which the Bill would throw on the managers of the voluntary schools was at the present moment borne out of the public funds. It was an error, which at one time, I admit, I shared more or less, to suppose that this Bill relieves burdens which now exist in the case of managers of voluntary schools and imposes none. It does remove many obligations, but it certainly imposes some which do not exist at present, and the burdens it imposes are precisely in respect of repairs and minor improvements. I had occasion recently to look into these figures, and I believe a very large sum has been paid for these very purposes out of the public funds. Of course I do not deny for one moment that the balance of advantages, even if the Bill is not amended as the House of Lords proposed, is greatly in favour of the voluntary schools, as a whole. It is greatly in their favour: but it is not greatly in favour of a great many voluntary schools. There are, on the contrary, a not inconsiderable number of voluntary schools, and these schools are situated in the poorest parts of our large towns—some belonging to the English Communion, some of them to the Wesleyan Church, and a large number belonging to the Roman Catholic Church, who will not have their position improved by this Bill, if this Amendment by the Lords is not adopted. The House should face these facts before it comes to any final decision on this point.
There is one other observation I should like to make on this Amendment, and it is this, that whatever may be thought of the effect of this Amendment on voluntary schools— whether it be thought it gives them unfairly favour- 1434 able terms or not, I have no doubt that it is an Amendment which, in part will be in favour of education. I do not often have the advantage of agreement with the hon. Member for North Camberwell, but that hon. Gentleman will not dissent when I lay down that proposition. One of the things most required is an improvement in the structural condition of a large number of schools, especially in the towns; and I have not the least doubt that if this Amendment is passed, and if the education authorities are charged their share of current expenses and fair wear and tear, they will be emboldened to require the managers to make greater sacrifices than they otherwise would for these structural improvements which, let the House take my word for it, imposed great sacrifices on those interested in voluntary schools. After all, the question which the House has got to determine is not, in my judgment, how much ought the education authority to contribute to voluntary schools, but the converse question— what amount of sacrifice ought to be required from the voluntary schools, in order to justify their continued existence. Of course, the whole system is illogical and arbitrary. I have not often the pleasure of agreeing on these subjects with my noble friend below the Gangway, but I agree with him in this—that it is perfectly ludicrous and absurd to put a stigma on denominational education as such; but so long as our educational system is the mixed thing it is, so long as we are going to have the rate-provided school on the one hand, without denominational education, and to fill up the gap on the other hand, as we must fill it up, with denominational teaching, then I do not see how we are going to avoid some kind of money test, how we can avoid imposing some kind of monetary sacrifice on those who desire the advantages of a voluntary and denominational school system. The question is what should be the magnitude of that burden? I think, though it is very hard to say exactly, that this burden will become quite sufficient even if this Ammendment is passed. It is extremely diffienlt to get any figures on the point. I have been hampered all through the long debates on this Bill by the impossibility of getting to the bottom of the financial situation; but I am perfectly covinced that with the burden left on the managers for the ordinary current expenses of their schools, to which 1435 has to be added the burden of bringing these schools up to the educational level with which the Educational Department will be satisfied, there will be a monetary test placed on those who desire denominational teaching which nobody would describe as inadequate. If that is so, it appears to me that, on the whole, the main objection to this Amendment falls to the ground. I entirely agree with those critics of the Bill and the present Amendmend, that, if you give extravagantly good terms to the denominational managers, and ask of them nothing in return for all which this Bill gives them, you do them a very ill service. You would deliberately pass a measure which was destined to be transitory; and probably it would be in the highest degree inexpedient in the interests of denominational education itself that terms of that kind should be given. I do not think that this Bill will do that. I believe that the more the financial position is studied, the more it will be seen that there is an adequate sacrifice imposed upon the managers of the voluntary schools, a sacrifice sufficient to prevent the whole system from degenerating, and to prevent that curious compromise under which we, in England, live, as between the undenominational part of our primary school system and the denominational part, from becoming an absurdity and a farce. That being so, I think the House would be well advised not to dissent from the other House in the course they have adopted. I have attempted with all the impartiality in my power to place the issue before the House. I do not believe the general line of argument which I have adopted can be disputed as to the facts, and I can only leave it to the House to decide whether, under these circumstances, they can controvert the decision arrived at by the other House, or whether, on the other hand, they will agree with what I admit will confer another considerable benefit to the denominational schools of the country.
§ (11.3.) MR. T. P. O'CONNOR () Liverpool, Scotland
said the House would perfectly understand that they on that side of the House should not be called upon to decide between the two right hon. Gentlemen, although on the purely constitutional aspect of the question he himself would probably find himself 1436 more in agreement with the Leader of the Opposition than with the Leader of the House. But everybody knew that the position of the Irish party in the House was somewhat peculiar. They stood in aconstant and perpetual minority, protesting against their inclusion in the House at all, and therefore in a question between the two Chambers they were in a state of mutual hostility. He might say in passing that whenever an act of oppression to any minority in this House was contemplated or was justified, it was to the Irish minority—from the days when the action of the Irish Party was held to justify the revolutionary change of the Rules of the Closure, till the last few days—it was always with the Irish Party that the abuse began. That led him to this observation; that he believed that this House would some day come to the same conclusion as the Irish Party had done, that in the effort to deprive Ireland of her own liberties, this House was depriving itself of its own liberties. He earnestly pleaded with the House to grant him some indulgence while he put the case, which was not the case of either of the English Parties in the House—the case of a permanent minority in this House—the case of the Irish Catholics, for with all due respect to the English Catholics in the House, the Catholic question was mainly that of the Irish Catholics. This might be illustrated by what took place in the constituency he had the honour to represent. In that constituency there were nine Catholic Schools. The population was, he should think, the poorest in any part of the country, consisting maiidy of "dockers," who were not only insufficiently paid, but whose employment was precarious. And yet there they had this extraordinary state of things, that in the poorest part of the country, the school tax was highest and pressed most heavily on the poorest of the poor. The right hon. Gentleman had made a confession which was honourable in its candidness, but not to his mastery of his own Bill; he acknowledged that he did not quite realise the amount which the public authorities already gave to the assistance of the voluntary schools. That was a cardinal fact in this whole question. Take the Catholic schools in the Scotland Division of Liverpool. The arrangement at present wag that the rent of these 1437 was paid out of an Imperial grant, but that would disappear under this Bill. He understood that some hon. Members thought it an abuse to pay the rent of Wesleyan and Catholic Schools, but the fact remained that it had been done. What was the case with the Anglican schools? In large numbers of these schools the repairs which the managers provided amounted to more than the voluntary subscriptions. That might be perfectly true in regard to certain of the poor districts, but the right hon. Gentleman had frankly stated that in these poor districts there was a large Irish population, and a large number of Irish Catholic schools; and the constituencies which had poor Anglican schools had, therefore, poor Catholic schools as well. But, while in the Anglican Church there were some poor districts, it represented, as a whole, the wealth of the country. And yet it was granted enormous concessions in regard to a share of the fees, a share of the endowments, and the rent of the teachers' houses. But every Member on that side of the House knew that not one of these concessions touched the Irish Catholic case. The Irish Catholics had practically no fees, no endowments, or teachers' houses for which they could claim rent. Therefore they had received no conessions under this Bill. On the contrary, much had been taken from them and little had been given.
§ MR. T. P. O'CONNOR
said he would now go into the question of repairs. The figures were sometimes hard to get at, because, like most statistics used in political warfare, they were of a somewhat evanescent and changing character. At times they were put high and at other times low. In the London School Board district the repairs represented 5s. 8d. per child; in other districts he had seen it put down at 3s. and in others at 2s. But whether 5s. 8d., 3s. or 2s., it still formed a very appreciable addition to the burthen placed upon the Irish Catholics. If it was put at an average of 4s. it would be a burthen of £52,000. Even at the lowest figure suggested, it would mean a burthen of £26,000 per annum on the Catholic community. He appealed to 1438 hon. Gentlemen opposite, many of whom had Catholic schools in their constituencies, if they thought that it was acting in a generous or even a just spirit, to put this additional burthen on the poor Catholic population in Great Britain. In his own constituency, he was told that it would make the strain of supporting the Catholic schools more intolerable even than it was at present. Figures which had been given to him showed that the cost of repairs was a very appreciable amount of the total expenditure; and if these figures were correct, a sum of something like £15,000 a year would be added to the burthens of the Catholic schools in the single Catholic diocese of Liverpool, unless the Amendment were accepted. He thought the First Lord of the Treasury did not overstate the case when he said that it was more than doubtful whether, on the whole, Catholic schools in some parts of England would benefit or lose by the Bill unless this Amendment were accepted. He thought that, on the whole, without the Amendment, the loss would be greater than the gain. What would be the position of the Catholic schools under the Bill? In a large number of cases they would have to be changed if not revolutionised in their structure. What was the case now? Anyone who visited a Catholic school and a School Board school would be painfully and lamentably struck by the difference between one and the other. The School Board school was airy, had the latest hygienic appliances, the latest kind of school furniture, and the best class of study halls. That was the School Board school, which had the rates of the entire community to fall back upon. The Catholic school, on Che other hand, was often very squalid and always unequal to the strain upon it. He felt that poor as that school was, the contrast of its poverty with the wealth and splendour of the School Board school was a high testimony to the people who preferred a school of their own creed to a better school which was not of their creed. Hon. Gentlemen maintained that the School Board school was open to Catholics as well as to Protestants, and that, in their interpretation, it was not a sectarian school. But the position 1439 of Catholics was that even if religious education were excluded from a school altogether, or if it were reduced to a minimum by reading the Bible without comment, it still remained, from the Catholic point of view, a Protestant school as distinguished from a Catholic school. Therefore, the position of Irish Catholics in Liverpool and other cities in this country was that they had to pay a double school rate, the rate for the School Board Protestant school and the rate for the Catholic school. Was it not a monstrous injustice that the poorest part of the population should have to pay that double tax? The Catholic schools were necessarily very poor, often ill-constructed, and always inadequate. At present they were only allowed to remain in such a condition because they had their freedom, and because, to all intents and purposes, they were purely voluntary schools. What would happen under the? Why, the public authority would be compelled, whether they liked it or not, to demand great changes in these schools. Suppose the public health officer in Liverpool informed the City Council that St. Joseph's Catholic school, in the Scotland Division, was unhealthy, that the health of the children was endangered through bad drainage, insufficient ventilation, low ceilings, and other structural defects. In that case, the City Council would have no option but to compel changes in the school to make it healthier. It was very different at present. When Mr. Acland was Vice President of the Council he himself was constantly going to him with complaints from Catholic priests in his constituency, who were alarmed at the changes he was asking them to make in the schools. Of course, political or personal remonstrances might have an effect now; but the moment the Bill passed into law, the local authority in Liverpool, Manchester, and other great cities would be compelled to impose on the Catholic community vast and, in some cases, revolutionary changes in the structure of their schools. Take the question of study halls alone. In many Catholic schools now the children were taught in one large room. According to the latest educational methods, that room would have to be divided up 1440 into several small halls, which would make a considerable demand on the resources of the school. What had happened in London alone? He was informed by Father Brown, who was a member of the London School Board, that no less than 232 schools under the Board had had their drains torn up within the last few years, and that, at the present moment, the drains of forty-three schools were being reorganised. That was happening in regard to schools which were only thirty years old, which were built in this enormously rich city, and which had behind them the rates of all sections of the public. If that werethe case in regard to modern schools in this wealthy city, he asked the House to picture what would be the case of the schools built by the pence of the Catholic poor in the poorest quarters. He spoke of the question as affecting the poorest of the poor; and he wished to refer, in passing, to the unhappy social conditions of his own country, which had driven the Irish people into the slums of the great cities of England. That was a point which was always present to his mind; it must always be present to the mind of any Irishman dealing with the question; and, he thought, it should also be present to the mind of the Legislature. Hon. Gentlemen opposite differed from him as to the political remedies that were necessary for the relief of the impoverishment of the Irish people and the Irish race; but none of them would deny that it was a tragic chapter in the history of the Irish race that two millions of that race should have been driven to the worst and lowest forms of labour in the most unhealthy quarters of the cities of this country by the condition of their own country.
§ MR. T. P. O'CONNOR
said that his hon. friend the Member for the City of Cork had defined his digression as dealing with the wear and tear of the population of sIreland. Perhaps that was really as momentous and as vital a question as the wear and tear of the voluntary schools. An appeal had been made on several occasions, during the debates on the Bill, to the Irish Members to consider the 1441 amount of sympathy and support given to certain political principles by the party of which his hon. friend the Member for Carnarvon Borourghs was such a distinguished member. But he put it to his hon. friend that these appeals were irrelevant and even irrational, and that they showed an entire misconception of Irish character, Irish tradition, and Irish history. When, in the history of the Irish people, had they ever considered their material prosperity when their religious convictions were supposed to be involved. The race which allowed its whole land to be confiscated rather than give up its religious principles, was not going to give them up now for political considerations. On all these grounds, he strongly appealed to the House not to impose this additional burden on the poorest of the poor, but to display toleration and fair play towards their religious convictions and their religious schools.
§ (11.25.) MR. HENRY HOBHOUSE
said this was a question in which the ratepayer should be considered. He was not going to use the word "bargain,'' but what was created by the Bill was an arrangement between the managers and ratepayers. Under that arrangement the ratepayers were asked to provide funds and to give up a majority on the managing body of the schools in return for a certain valuable consideration. They had been led to describe this consideration as providing the school buildings free of charge. His first objection to the Amendment was that it modified, and to a great extent destroyed, the principle of that arrangement. At first it imposed an undefined liability on the load authority; it had now been converted into what he might call a fixed charge of substantial amount. It would be regarded as something equivalent to a rent paid for the school buildings. Was it desirable or fair still further to increase tho burdens of the ratepayers without giving them any equivalent? It was also most unwise still further to narrow the basis on which the denominational system of schools was to rest in future. It might be, as the First Lord of the Treasury said, that the Amendment might be, to the advantage of education. Certainly, to his mind, it would not be to the advantage or to the permanency of denominational teaching. If hard- 1442 ships were connected with any particular school, they ought to be left to diocesan funds rather than be thrown still further on the resources of the ratepayers. He ventured to urge on the House that the acceptance of the Amendment would not tend to make the denominational system more popular or more stable.
*SIR EDWARD STRACHEY
said it was refreshing to have the right hon. Gentleman the member for East Somerset on the other side protesting against this new imposition on the local ratepayers, especially in country districts. The agricultural districts were, at the present moment, very heavily burdened. The Prime Minister said that the Amendment would not impose a new burden, that it existed at present, but not on the ratepayer. The right hon. Gentleman seemed to forget that the repairs and other school expenses, estimated by the Bishop of Manchester at £300,000 at present, would not really represent the total charge. They were all aware that when the public authority took over buildings and executed repairs, the expenses always increased in a most alarming manner. That would be what would happen if the Amendment were carried. The right hon. Gentleman, the Member for the Sleaford Division, expressed himself in The Times newspaper as being quite satisfied with the amount of the extra grant, though it did not go as far as his Amendment, limiting the rate to one fourth of the total cost of education, which the Government promised towards the relief of the local rates; but the effect of this burden, put upon them by the House of Lords, would be to take away the whole of the extra grant; although it was not very valuable, as it laid down the principle that the local rates should never get off with less than 3d. in the £ If the right hon. Gentleman the Member for the Sleaford Division was satisfied that that was proper treatment, he himself was not satisfied; and he was glad that the Central Chamber of Agriculture, which he represented in this House, as its chairman, was also not satisfied with the grant, but much preferred the limitation of one fourth from the local rates. The Central Chamber desired to have it laid down that, in no case should the local rates 1443 ever have to bear more than a quarter of the total charge for education, both secondary and primary. Again, the County Councils' Association had unanimously declared that it was wrong and unfair that any further charge should be put upon the local rates. The education authority had the occupancy of the school buildings for about five hours a day for five days a week, so that practically for one day's occupancy they had to pay the entire cost of keeping the buildings in repair for the remaining six days a week. That was a very unfair bargain, and he hoped that many of the supporters of the Government, who were so fond of posing as the friends of the farmers, and who, at election times, claimed to be the party to keep down the rates, would on this occasion justify their claims by voting against this proposal.
§ MR. CHAPLIN () Lincolnshire, Sleaford
, said he had two reasons for opposing the Amendment. According to the Leader of the Opposition, the Bishop of Manchester had stated that the effect of this Amendment would relieve the supporters of voluntary schools to the extent of £350,000.
§ SIR JAMES FERGUSSON
pointed out that what the Bishop said was that the present charge in respect of repairs amounted to that sum.
§ MR. CHAPLIN
understood that to that extent the Bishop expressed the opinion that they were to be relieved of that charge. What did that mean? Two or three weeks ago the Leader of the House expressed the hope that he would be able to grant further relief to the agricultural districts, and within forty-eight hours the right hon. Gentleman made a concession which, in his view, was a liberal fulfilment of that conditional hope. But by the acceptance of this Amendment, the whole of that concession would be swept away, and if it was to form a precedent for the future, there was not a single decision of the House of Commons with regard to financial concerns that might not be overhauled by the House of Lords, and re-opened. In his judgment, the Amendment was technically a flagrant evasion 1444 of the privileges of the House of Commons, and he earnestly hoped the House would show by a large majority that it would have nothing whatever to do with it.
§ SIR GEORGE NEWNES () Swansea, Town
said he would not refer to the de-defence of the Amendment made by the hon. Member for the Scotland Division of Liverpool, as the Bill was introduced for the benefit, not of Roman Catholics, but of the Church of England, who had made a bargain in respect of the matter. ["No."] The bargain was that the Church, as the possessor of the largest number of denominational schools, should receive, not the monetary value of those schools, but the control of the religious education of the children therein. Surely, such a bargain had never before been made in bricks and mortar, nor had such property ever before been made to yield such exorbitant interest. But by this Amendment the Church sought to be allowed to run away from her part of the bargain. The Nonconformists, who numbered more than half the population of the country—["No"]—had been ignored; they had to keep to their part of the bargain, and, as a Nonconformist, he protested against the Church being permitted to run away from hers. This proposal would set up a rancour and bitterness, and create a sense of injustice, which would last as long as the Bill remained an Act of Parliament, and there would arise a state of religious strife and unrest which were not in the interests of the State or of education, and which would not be conducive to the welfare of the Church which had caused it.
§ MR. MIDDLEMORE () Birmingham, N.
thought the Amendment a deplorable one. There had been a clear understanding as to this repairing Clause. The words were very simple, and capable of only one construction. Some of the main elements of the understanding were that the Church should maintain the school fabric, that the State should give the school teaching and that the Church should have the majority of the managers. The supporters of the voluntary schools were willing to accept 1445 the Bill on these conditions, and were naturally glad to do so, as it would save the school from extermination under the "intolerable strain." The obligation to maintain the fabric had been not so repudiated as dodged. The Church was to maintain the outside of the fabric, but money was to be provided for her to do so. There had never been a more Machiavellian arrangement.
§ MR. M1DDLEMORE
said he meant the endowments, certain rents, and, finally, having only half the necessary work to do. The Clause would more properly read—The managers of a school should out of funds provided, not by them, but for them, keep, not the school buildings, but, the outside of the school buildings, in good repair, and do as they like with any surplus funds they may have.He frankly declared that this was a tortuous proceeding, and was paltering with the country in a double sense. He did not suggest that this evasion of the understanding was really premeditated. Unforeseen circumstances had doubtless put these emoluments in the way of the Church, but from his heart he wished the Church had refused them. By doing so it would have made for itself a great spiritual position in the country, but it had preferred the cash in hand to the spiritual position, and he believed that in making that choice, the Church had made a disastrous mistake. He had hoped that the Bishops, as the guardians of the loftiest interests of the Church, would have expurgated the Bill of these unworthy provisions; instead of doing so they had added a blot, not only to the Bill, but to their own cause. Not a single part of the understanding which existed on the Second Reading of the Bill remained. Money was provided, and only half the repairs were required. There was bound to be great agitation. The Dissenters would be a thoroughly contemptible set if there were, no agitation, and it were shown that all their denunciations had been so much froth, and in his view, one of the most potent elements in that, agitation would be the Clause now under discussion.
§ DR. MACNAMARA
said the original scheme was that repairs should be met by the managers out of funds provided by them, and that remained the scheme until the 2nd of October. It dawned, however, upon the members of the Church, that this would impose a very onerous burden on them. For his own part, he thought the burden ought to be onerous, when one compared the benefits derived by the Church on the one hand and the community on the other from this Bill. How did the matter stand? In 12,000 out of 20,000 elementary schools the Church of England was to have its specific denominational teaching provided entirely at the cost of rates and taxes; it was to be able to insist on the head, masters in those schools being members, of the Established Church, and four-sixths of the managers of those schools were to he trustee managers and members of the Church. It also got the free use of the buildings and the furniture on Saturday and Sunday, and on four nights in the week for denominational purposes. These were considerable items, altogether apart from the spiritual aspect of the case, to put on one side of the balance-sheet. On the other side the public were to have a general control over the secular instruction through the medium of the Education Committee, and the right to veto the appointment or dismissal of teachers in respect of secular education. They were also to have two managers out of six, and the free use of the buildings for six or seven hours a day on five days a week and on three nights a week. Originally the managers were to keep up the fabric out of funds provided by them, but that obligation was afterwards whittled down by their having half the fees, half the endowments, and all the rent of the teachers' houses to meet that charge. Under this Amendment the remaining half of the fees and endowments and any additional rate assistance that might be required would also go to the upkeep of the fabric. Then there was the case of the Catholic schools. The hon. Member for the Scotland Division of Liverpool had talked about the schools being starved. That was a matter of the past; there was no question of their being starved in the future, as voluntary subscriptions would disappear for purposes of maintenance. The question was this 1447 Was it worth while to the Roman Catholic Church to find the £26,000, the estimated cost of repairs, to have the right to appoint the headmaster and they thousands of other teachers in its 1000 schools, and to give specific Catholic teaching entirely out of public funds to the 250,000 children in those schools? Surely, from the point of view of the Catholic faith, it was worth while so to do. Those who desired to preserve denominational teaching would do well to leave a small margin for their own obligations, in order that there might be some financial justification for the continuance of the denominational system. This Amendment was carried in the other House by the speech of the Bishop of Manchester, and he wished to say in the most deliberate way that Dr. Moorhouse was singularly ill-informed in the statements he made, for they were ludicrously beside the mark. Dr. Moorhouse said that the average cost of repairs in the board schools was 2s. 10d. a child, which was correct; but he said also that, applying that estimate to the Church of England schools, the sum would come out at £700,000 a year. But the number of children in average attendance in the Church schools was£1,885,802, and the total sum came out, therefore, only at £267,155 5s. 8d. He hoped Dr. Moorhouse's theology was better than his simple multiplication. But he contended that the sum would not amount to more than 2s. per child. In a letter in The Times, Dr. Waller had shown that in the Wesleyan Schools, which were not less well equipped than other denominational schools, the cost of repairs worked out at 1s. 3d. per scholar. He had always taken the generous estimate of 2s. per scholar. That would work out in the case of the Church of England schools to £200,000. To meet that there were half the fees, amounting to £60,000, half the endowments, amounting to another £60,000 and rent amounting to £40,000, or £160,000 in all, leaving a balance of £40,000 to be provided by the Church. Was it worth £40,000 to retain the right to give denominational teaching in 12,000 out of 60,000 schools at the cost of public funds, to maintain theological tests for 12,000 head teachers, and to have four-sixths of the managers? So far from the State having driven a hard bargain with the Church, the Church had driven a hard 1448 bargain with the public, and a bargain from which she would in the future regret having departed. The Church had driven a hard bargain, which it would live to regret. He agreed with the Duke of Devonshire that this little contribution was the Church's one claim to the continuation of all its privileges which it now secured under this Bill, and it was in the interest of the perpetuation of denominational religious teaching that the Church should be prepared to make it.
MR. GIBSON BOWLES
agreed with the Prime Minister that this proposal should be debated on its merits, but he did not in the least agree that, in order that that should be done, it was necessary for it to be presented in its present form. The House of Lords constantly made Amendments affecting financial provisions of measures sent from the House of Commons. It was true that they sometimes adopted the uncandid, inconvenient, and improper course followed in the present instance, but as a general rule they had not done so. Usually they adopted an Amendment, and the House of Commons, having recognised in that Amendment an evasion of their privileges, agreed, if the circumstances warranted, to waive their privileges. That was the proper method to adopt. If the present practice was to be followed, a similar policy might be adopted in regard to a Money Bill. There was no reason why the House of Lords shoul not put a penny on the income-tax, and then add a paragraph saying it was not to involve any public charge. He was with the Government on the present occasion, but as they were originally, not as they now were. The Prime Minister seemed to expect his majority to turn, turn, and turn again. He however, could not change so frequently. Whether it was because he associated less with colleagues from Birmingham he did not know, but having started in one direction it took him longer to turn right about face. The right hon. Gentleman had said he would leave the House to express its unbiassed opinion in regard to this matter. But though he was not going to put on the Government Whips, he at once stated that he thought the House ought to accept the Amendment. What 1449 was the use of leaving off the Government Whips against an opinion like that? It used to be said that Napoleon was worth 20,000 men to any army he joined. How many votes was the First Lord of the Treasury worth? Certainly a great many. If the right hon. Gentleman intended to leave the House to express its unbiased opinion, he ought not to have exercised his great eloquence and fascination of manner in support of one particular side. Neutrality consisted in helping neither side, not in helping both sides, and still less in helping
|Abraham, William(Cork, N.E.)||Compton, Lord Alwyne||Greene, Henry D. (Shrewsbury)|
|Acland-Hood,Capt,Sir Alex F.||Condon, Thomas Joseph||Grenfell, William Henry|
|Agg-Gardner, James Tynte||Cranborne, Viscount||Halsey, Rt.Hon. Thomas F.|
|Ambrose, Robert||Crean, Eugene|
|Anstruther, H. T.||Cripps, Charles Alfred|
|Arkwright, John Stanhope||Cullinan, J.||Hamilton, RtHn LordG(Midd'x)|
|Arrol, Sir William||Hammond, John|
|Dalrymple, Sir Charles||Hatch, Ernest Frederick Geo.|
|Bailey, James (Walworth)||Delany, William||Hayden, John Patrick|
|Bain, Colonel James Robert||Dimsdale, Rt.Hon. Sir Joseph C.||Healy, Timothy Michael|
|Balcarres, Lord||Disraeli, Coningsby Ralph||Henderson, Sir Alexander|
|Balfour, Rt.Hn. A.J.(Manch'r.)||Dixon-Hartland, Sir FredDixon||Hickman, Sir Alfred|
|Balfour, Capt. C. B. (Hornsey)||Doogan, P. C.||Higginbottom, S. W.|
|Balfour, RtHnGeraldW.(Leeds)||Doughty, George||Hope, J.F.(Sheffield, Brightside)|
|Bartley, Sir George C. T.||Douglas, Rt.Hon. A. Akers.||Howard,John(Kent,Faversh'm)|
|Barhurst, Hon. Allen Benjamin||Doxford, Sir William Theodore||Hudson, George Bickersteth|
|Bigwood, James||Duke, Henry Edward||Hutton, John (Yorks., N.R.)|
|Blundell, Colonel Henry|
|Bond, Edward||Esmonde, Sir Thomas||Jameson, Major J. Eustace|
|Boscawen, Arthur Griffith||Johnstone, Heywood|
|Bousfield, William Robert||Jordan, Jeremiah|
|Brassey, Albert||Faber, Edmund B. (Hants, W.)||Joyee, Michael|
|Brodrick, Rt.Hon. St. John||Fellowes, Hon. Ailwyn Edward|
|Burke E. Haviland||Ffrech, Peter|
|Butcher, John George||Field, William||Kemp, George|
|Finch, Rt.Hon. George H.||Kennaway, Rt Hon. Sir John H.|
|Fisher, William Hayes||kennedy, Patrick James|
|Campbell, John (Armagh, S.)||Fison, Frederick William||Kenyon, Hon.Geo. T.(Denbigh)|
|Carew, James Laurence||Flavin, Michael Joseph||Keswick, William|
|Carson, Rt.Hon. Sir Edw. H.||Fletcher, Rt.Hon. Sir Henry||Kimber, Henry|
|Carvill, Patrick Geo. Hamilton||Flower, Ernest|
|Cavendish, V.C.W.(Derbyshire||Flynn, James Christopher|
|Cecil, Evelyn (Aston Manor)||Forster, Henry William||Knowles, Lees|
|Cecil, Lord Hugh (Greenwich)||Law, Andrew Bonar (Glasgow)|
|Chapman, Edward||Lawrence, Sir Joseph(Monm'th)|
|Clancy, John Joseph||Galloway, William Johnson||Lawson, John Grant|
|Clive, Capt. Percy A.||Garfit, William||Leamy, Edmund|
|Cochrane, Hon. Thos. H. A. E.||Gibbs, Hn. A.G.H.(CityofLond.)||Legge, Col. Hon. Heneage|
|Cogan, Denis J.||Gilhooly, James||Lockie, John|
|Colomb,SirJohn CharlesReady||Godson, Sir AugustusFrederick||Loder, Gerald Walter Erskine|
|Colston, Chas. Edw. H. Athole||Goschen, Hon. George Joachim||Long, Col. Charles W.(Evesham|
§ one side. Under the circumstances, he had no possible doubt as to the course he should take. He should vote against the Amendment, not only because it would put a considerable extra charge on the ratepayers and the public revenues, but also because he agreed with the earlier and better mind of the Government.
§ (12.8) Question put.
§ The House divided:—Ayes, 197; Noes, 159. (Division List No. 641.)
|Long, Rt.Hn. Walter(Bristol,S)||O'Connor, T. P. (Liverpool)||Smith, H.C (North'mb. Tyneside)|
|Loyd, Archie Kirkman||O'Doherty, William||Spencer, Sir E. (W. Bromwich)|
|Lucas,Reginald J.(Portsmouth)||O'Donnell, T. (Kerry, W.)||Stanley, Edward Jas. (Somerset)|
|Lundon, W.||O'Dowd, John||Sullivan, Donal|
|O'Kelly, James (Roscommon,N)|
|O'Malley, William||Talbot, Lord E. (Chichester)|
|Macdona, John Cumming||O'Mara, James||Talbot, Rt.Hn J.G.(Oxf'd Univ.)|
|MacDonnell, Dr. Mark A.||O'Shaughnessy. P.J.||Thompson, Dr E.C.(Monagh'n, N.)|
|MacNeill, John Gordon Swift||O'Shee, James John||Tollemache, Henry James|
|MacVeagh, Jeremiah||Tomlinson, Sir Wm. Edw. M.|
|M'Arthur, Charles (Liverpool)||Palmer, Walter (Salisbury)||Tully, Jasper|
|M'Govern, T.||Percy, Earl|
|M'Kean, John||Platt-Higgins, Frederick||Valentia, Viscount|
|M'Killop, W. (Sligo, North)||Plummer, Walter R.|
|Milvain, Thomas||Powell, Sir Francis Sharp|
|Moon, Edward Robert Pacy||Power, Patrick Joseph||Walker, Col. William Hall|
|Mooney, John J.||Pretyman, Ernest George||Wanklyn, James Leslie|
|More, Robt. Jasper (Shropshire)||Welby, Lt-Col, A.C.E.(Taunton)|
|Morrell, George Herbert||Wharton. Rt.Hon. John Lloyd|
|Murnaghan, George||Purvis, Robert||White, Patrick (Meath, North)|
|Murphy, John||Ratclitf, R. F.||Whiteley, H.(Ashton-und-Lyne)|
|Murray. RtHn A. Graham(Bute)||Redmond, John E. (Waterford)||Williams, Colonel R. (Dorset)|
|Murray, Charles J. (Coventry)||Remnant, James Farquharson||Willoughby de Eresby, Lord|
|Myers, William Henry||Ridley, Hon. M.W. (Staly bridge||Willox, Sir John Archibald|
|Ridley, S. Forde (BethnalGreen)||Wilson, A. Stanley (York,E. R.)|
|Roberts, Samuel (Sheffield)||Wodehouse, Rt.Hon. E.R.(Bath)|
|Nannetti, Joseph P.||Robertson, Herbert (Hackney)||Worsley-Taylor, Henry Wilson|
|Nolan, Col. John P.(Galway, N.)||Round, Rt.Hon. James||Wortley, Rt.Hon. C. B. Stuart|
|Nolan, Joseph (Louth, South)||Rutherford, John||Wrightson, Sir Thomas|
|O' Brien, Kendal(Tipperary Mid)||Wyndham, Rt.Hon. George|
|Sackville, Col. S. G. Stopford|
|Samuel, Harry S. (Limehouse)|
|O'Brien, Patrick (Kilkenny)||Seton-Karr, Henry||TELLERS FOR THE AYES—|
|sir James Fergusson Sir John Dorington.|
|O'Brien, P.J. (Tipperary, N.)||Sharpe, William Edward T.|
|O'Brien, William (Cork)||Sheehan, Daniel Daniel|
|Agnew, Sir Andrew Noel||Cremer, William Randal||Goddard, Daniel Ford|
|Allen, CharlesP.(Glouc.,Stroud)||Crombie, John William||Grant, Corrie|
|Anson, Sir William Reynell||Crossley, Sir Savile||Gray, Ernest (West Ham)|
|Arnold-Forster, Hugh O.||Grey, Rt.Hon. Sir E. (Berwick)|
|Ashton, Thomas Gair||Griffith, Ellis J.|
|Atherley-Jones, L.||Dalziel, James Henry||Guest. Hon. Ivor Churchill|
|Atkinson, Rt.Hon. John||Davies, Alfred (Carmarthen)|
|Davies, M. Vaughan- (Cardigan)|
|Denny, Colonel||Haldane, Rt.Hon. Richard B.|
|Bagot, Capt. Josceline Fitzroy||Dickson. Charles Scott||Harcourt, Rt.Hon. Sir Wm.|
|Barran, Rowland Hirst||Digby, John K. D. Wingfield||Hardie, J. Keir(Merthyr Tydvil)|
|Bayley, Thomas (Derbyshire)||Dilke, Rt.Hon. Sir Charles||Hayne, Rt.Hon. Charles Seale|
|Bignold. Arthur||Duncan, J. Hastings||Hayter, Rt.Hon. Sir Arthur D.|
|Bowles, Capt. H. F.(Middlesex)||Helme, Norval Watson|
|Bowles,T. Gibson (King's Lynn)||Holland, Sir William Henry|
|Brigg, John||Edwards, Frank||Hope, John Deans (Fife, West)|
|Broadhurst, Henry||Elliot, Hon. A. Ralph Douglas||Hoult, Joseph|
|Brown, George M.(Edinburgh)||Emmott, Alfred||Howard, J. (Midd. Tottenham)|
|Brunner, Sir John Tomlinson||Evans,SirFrancisH. (Maidstone)||Hutton, Alfred E. (Morley)|
|Bryce, Rt.Hon. James||Evans, Samuel T. (Glamorgan)|
|Faber, George Denison (York)|
|Caldwell, James||Finlay, Sir Robert Bannatyne|
|Campbell-Bannerman, Sir H.||Fitzmaurice, Lord Edmond||Kenyon-Slaney, Col. W. (Salop.)|
|Causton, Richard Knight||Fitzroy, Hon. Edward Algernon|
|Chamberlain, RtHn J. A. (Wore.)||Flannery, Sir Fortescue|
|Chaplin, Rt.Hon. Henry||Foster. Sir Walter (Derby Co.)||Langley, Batty|
|Cohen. Benjamin Louis||Fowler, Rt.Hon. Sir Henry||Layland-Barratt, Francis|
|Corbett, T. L. (Down, North)||Fuller, J. M. F.||Lecky, Rt. Hn. W illiam Edw. H.|
|Cox. lrwin Edward Bainbridge||Gladstone, Rt.Hn. HerbertJohn||Lee, Arthur H.(Hants, Faroham)|
|Leese,SirJoseph F.(Accrington)||Quilter, Sir Cuthbert||Thomas, Sir A. (Glamorgan,E.)|
|Leigh, Sir Joseph||Thomas, David Alfred (Merthyr)|
|Leigh-Bennett, Henry Currie||Thomas, F. Freeman-(Hastings)|
|Levy, Maurice||Rea, Russell||Thomas,J A(Glamorgan,Gower)|
|Lloyd-George, David||Reckitt, Harold James||Thomson,F. W. (York, W.R.)|
|Lough,Thomas||Rickett, J. Compton||Thornton, Perey M.|
|Lowe, Francis William||Rigg, Richard||Toulmin, George|
|Roberts, John Bryn (Eition)||Trevelyan, Charles Philips|
|Roberts, John H. (Denbighs.)||Tritton, Charles Ernest|
|Macartney, Rt.Hn. W.G. Ellison||Roe, Sir Thomas|
|Macnamara, Dr. Thomas J.||Rothschild,Hon. Lionel Walter|
|Maconochie, A. W.||Royds, Clement Molyneux||Walton John Lawson(Leeds,S.)|
|M'Arthur, William (Cornwall)||Walton, Joseph (Barnsley)|
|M'Kenna, Reginald||Warner, Thomas Courtenay T.|
|M'Killop, James (Stirlingshire)||Samuel, Herbert L. (Cleveland)||Wason, Eugene (Clackmannan)|
|Markham, Arthur Basil||Sandys,Lient.-Col. Thos. Myles||Wason,John Cathcart(Orkney)|
|Middlemore,John Throgmorton||Schwann, Charles E.||Weir, James Galloway|
|Mildmay, Francis Bingham||Seely, Charles Hilton (Lincoln)||Welby, Sir Charles G.E.(Notts.)|
|Morgan,J. Lloyd (Carmarthen)||Shaw, Charles Edw. (Stafford)||White, George (Norfolk)|
|Morely, Charles (Brecoushire)||Shipman, Dr. John G.||Whiteley, George (York, W.R.)|
|Sinclair, John (Forfarshire)||Whitley, J.H. (Halifax)|
|Smith,Abel H. (Herford,East)||Whittaker, Thomas Palmer|
|Norman, Henry||Smith,JamesParker(Lanarks.)||Wilson, Fred. W. (Norfolk, Mid.)|
|Norton,Captain Cecil William||Soames, Arthur Wellesley||Wilson, Henry J. (York, W.R.)|
|Nussey, Thomas Willans||Soares, Ernest J.||Wilson, John (Durham, Mid)|
|Soear, John Ward||Wolff, Gustay Wilhelm|
|Spencer, RtHn. C.R.(Nerthants)||Woodhouse, Sir J.T(Huddersf'd)|
|Partingtron, Oswald||Stevenson. Francis S.|
|Paulton, James Mellor||Stone, Sir Benjamin|
|Pease,Herbert Pike(Darlingt'n)||Strutt,Hon. Charles Hedley||Yoxall, James Henry|
|Pemberton, John S. G.|
|Perks, Robert William|
|Philipps, John Wynford||Taylor, Austin (East Toxteth)||TELLERS FOR THE NOES—|
|Mr. Henry Hobhouse and Sir Edward Strachey.|
|Pilkington, Lient.-Col. Richard||Taylor, Theodore C. (Radeliffe)|
|Pryce-Jones, Lt.-Col. Edward||Thomas, Abel (Carmarthen, E.)|
§ SIR H. CAMPBELL-BANNERMAN
I wish to ask the First Lord of the Treasury what he proposes to do with regard to the further course of the Bill. I do not ask this in consequence of the division which has just taken place, but in consequence of the late hour and of the stage at which we have arrived. We are now approaching the Amendment proposed in the celebrated Kenyon-Slaney Clause, and I think there is a general feeling that that is a question of such general importance to the public that it ought not to be discussed here at the small hours of the morning. [MINISTERIAL cries of "Oh, oh ! "] I ask hon. Members opposite not to be too premature. On the other hand, 1454 there is no desire whatever to prolong unduly the discussion on that or any other Clause, and therefore I would ask the right hon. Gentleman to suspend further proceedings on this Bill now, or at any rate, before we touch the Kenyon-Slaney Clause.
§ MR. A. J. BALFOUR
There was a hope entertained in some quarter, I think in many quarters, that we might dispose of the Lords Amendments in one night, but I admit that that hope has now become faint. In the general scheme of the session we had in view, and had always contemplated, the possibility, that the Lords Amendments 1455 would go over to part of the second night. If it will meet the general view of the House, I would suggest that we should finish drafting the Amendments down to the Kenyon-Slaney Clause, and leave the Kenyon-Slaney Clause over to Wednesday. I hope, however, that the Hose will consent to take tonight the final stage of the Uganda Railway Bill. The Kenyon-Slaney Clause and the other Amendments might, I think, be disposed of before the dinner hour. It might expedite business if I mention that it is my intention to advise the House to retain the Lords' Amendment in reference to teachers on education committees, and I propose to ask the House to disagree with that part. I do not believe there ought to be any difficulty in finishing our business before dinner tomorrow, but I must ask the House, in addition, to take the Lords Amendments to the Water Bill. If it had not been that certain hon. Members interested in the London Water Bill have left the House, I should have asked the House to take that measure tonight.
That is the whole scheme of business before the prolongation that I need ask the House to undertake, and if we can agree that that business shall be carried out, I am quite willing to take the course which has been suggested.
§ SIR H. CAMPBELL-BANNERMAN
I do not know that it would be discreet on my part to come to any positive agreement that the consideration of the Lords Amendments on this Bill should be finished by half-past seven tomorrow, but I may say that it is my full expectation that they can be finished by that time. If the right hon. Gentleman will 1456 be content with the pious wish instead of a positive agreement, I am quite agreeable to the course suggested. I gather from the remarks of the right hon. Gentleman that the London Water Bill Amendments are not very serious. That being so, I hope the right hon. Gentleman will accept what I call a pious wish or expectation in lieu of a positive agreement.
§ MR. T.P. O'CONNOR
asked if the First Lord of the Treasury would state what view the Government took of the Lord Amendment in regard to the Associations of Voluntary Schools.
§ MR. A.J. BALFOUR
I do not include that in the list of those Amendments with which we propose to disagree. I do not think I ought to give a pledge in regard to that question.
§ Lords Amendments as far as the Amendment in page 5, line 7, agreed to.
§ Further consideration of Lords Amendments adjourned till Tomorrow.