« ZurückWeiter »
the defence of the country. The measure which he had now to propose was to follow up the former, and which was not only of the utmost importance to that part of Great Britain, but to the commerce of every part of the United Empire, Ireland as well as this island.
From the third report of this Committee upon the Highland Survey, of which he had the honour to be chairman, and which report was now upon the table, ihe Committee was already apprised that the project to which he alluded was the opening of a navigable canal across the Highlands of Scotland, from the Ealtern 10 the Western Sea. The project might at first appear not only arduous, but impracticable ; but it appeared upon a minute survey, that though the tract through which this canal was intended to pass, was extremely mountainous, yet there was a chain of deep valleys to favour the operation, and these containing in the line of 59 miles (which was to be the extent of the navigation from sea to sea), shirty-eight miles of lakes of unfathomable depili, and capable of navigaring the largest ships in the riavy of England. The remaining line to be artificially cut, was about 21 miles, which it was purposed to make 20 feet deep, and of a proportionable widih, navigable for frigates. This work in its operation would be attended with much less difficully, and with infinitely less expense, ihan the Royal Junction and many other canals cut through different parts of this country; for the highest point of land, through which this cut was proposed to be made, was but 100 feet above the level of the sea, at high water-mark. The advantages of this measure, when completed, would not only be of incalculable benefit to that part of the United Kingdom, but of the utmost importance to the commerce and naval operation of the empire. It would not only ensure without risque, or uncertainty the p.Ifage of the whole Baltic and North Sea trade to the Irish Channel during the Summer months, and that probably in seven days, which, by the present dangerous navigation, round by the Shetland and Orkney islands, is nog generally effected in less than a fortnight or three weeks, and with the most contrary winds, and bad weather, ensure in twelve days that conveyance, which, by the old navigation, can rarely be effected, under the same disadvantages, in less than three months, and this with the most imminent risque, and frequently immense loss, not only of valuable ships and cargoes, but of the invaluable lives of able British seamen; and the whole expence may perhaps not exceed the atnount of the
3 C 2
losses by shipwreck on the average of the last five years. A project such as this, which would not only enable this copintry to carry on with lirule or no risk, and with such certain and ex'saordinary celeriiy, a commerce which now amounted tofoor millions annually, and must encrease, with all : he ad vantages this canal will afford, was a project of such high national importance, as induced hiin to rely upon the prompt concurrence of the Committee in the motion he had been instructed, as Chairman of a Select Commitiee, 10 make, namely, that a fum not exceeding 20,cool. be granted 10 bis Majesty for the purpose of opening the faid navigation by the way of Fort William and Inverness. The motion was agreed to nem. con. and ordered to be reported next day.
Further Committee of Supply on Friday.
Mr. Huichinson asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer for Ireland, whether any additional duty was imposed on falt in this cale? & Mr. Ccrry said, there was not.
The bill was then ordered to be referred to a Committee of the whole House.
On reading the order of the day for going into a Committee of the whole House on the falıpetre bill, 4. Mr. Hutchinson took occasion to observe, that the A&t of Union was not paffed with an intention that the business of Ireland thould be iransacted in the House when the benches were' empty, and expressed a wish for a fuller attendance in general than he had observed on these occasions. ? Mr. Corry answered all the observations of the hon. Gentleman, aflured him there had been no intention in any quarter to neglect the affairs of Ireland in that House, and ihat the utmost affiduity had been employed in the management of them; that with regard to ihe House being sometimes thinly attended, it was not peculiar to the affairs of Ireland, for that inilJions of money were voted on the service of England in the House when thinly attended, not because Members were indifferent to public business for England or Ireland, but because when once they were convinced of the propriety of the principle of a measure, they did not think it necessary to discurs or to attend to all the pages of its detail, and indeed it would be impracticable if it were otherwise. Subjects were discussed in those stages which called for discussion, and what was over the detail, proceeded from the principle which
had been decided in that discussion, and that he was fully fa- , tisfied that none of the affairs of Ireland or of England had been neglected in that respect now betore the Committee, and concluded with enforcing the propriety of it.
After a few words in explanation from Mr. Hutchinson and Mr. Corry, the House resolved i:self into a Committee of the whole House, when the resolutions were pailed, and the House being resumed, the report was ordered to be received next day.
HOUSE OF LORDS.
THURSDAY, JUNE 30. Counsel was heard in the appeal cause, M'Farlane v. Merhuin; the farther proceeding' in which was deterred till Monday following:
The House having forwarded the several bills before them, ädjourned.
HOUSE OF COMMONS,
THURSDAY, JUNE 30, The East India dock bill was ordered to be re-commirred the next day.
Mr. Alexander brought up the report of the Irish faliperre' bill.
The resolutions were agreed to, and instructions ordered to be given to the Commiiice on the Irish duries, to make regulations for carrying the provisions of the bill into eff &, ,
The Irish mililia pay-bill was committed. Repuried ine next day,
The Irish revenue regulation bill was ordered to be commilied on Monday following.
Mr Corry gave police, ihat the next day he would mive for leave to bring in a bill for the better regulation of difilleries in Ireland.
Sir John Anderson moved, that the report of the bill for the improvement of the ports of London Mould now be raken into farther confideration. The ameridients were agreed in, and the bill ordered 10 be read a third time on Monday following.
The Secretary at War moved for leave to bring in a bill for enabling his Majelly to call out the yeoiranry cavalry in the different districts, for putting into a tale of discipline
those serjeants, trumpeters, and drummers, belonging to the cavalry and volunteers, that received pay, and for the better regulations of the yeomanry and volunteer corps.
SCOTCH CANAL. Mr. Alexander brought up the report of the Committee of supply, by which it was resolved that 20,000l. should be given for making a canal between Inverness and Fort William, in Scotland. This resolution was agreed to by the House.
SCOTCH MILITIA FAMILIES. Sir James Sinclair Erskine moved the order of the day for the third reading of the Scotch militia families' bill.
Mr. Ferguson suggelted, that provision ought to be made only for the families of those upon whom the ballot bad actu. ally fallen, and who served in consequence.
Sir James Sinclair Erskine said, that in England, at first, the provisions had been confined within the limits mentioned by ihe hon. Gentleman. The principle, however, had been afterwards extended to all those who served in the militia. He should have been very well plealed that the principle 1hould have been confined according to the idea of the hon. Gentleman; but it was but fair that the Scorch militia should enjoy the same advantage as the English, with whom they 'served. Mr. Ferguson explained ; after which the bill passed.
PÁPERS. Mr. Tt'illiam Dundas rose and said, that the papers, for which a noble Lord had lately moved, and for the production of which he had obtained an order, respecting the carrying of corn coaft:ways in Scotland, could not, he understood, from the best authority, be now produced. A Committee was to be appointed to examine into this matter. He therefore suggested to the hon. Baronet (Sir William Pulteney), the propriety of withdrawing the order at present, and fixing it for the beginning of next session.
Sir William Pulteney agreed on the part of the noble Lord alluded to, and the former order was discharged.
Upon the question, whether it ought to be renewed for next Session,
Sir James Sinclair Erskine said, that Gentlemen ought 10 pause befure the order was made, as he doubted, upon good authority, whether the papers in question could be produced even next feffion. He therefore suggested the propriety of putring off the motion till Monday, that the matter might be considered in the mean linie. This was agreed to.
Mr. Rose also gave notice that he should the next day move for leave to bring in a bill, directing overseers of parishes to deliver in an account of the number of poor persons relieved in their respective parishes, together with the amount of the fums expended for that purpose.
ARMY OF RESERVE. The Secretary at War moved the third reading of the bill. for raising 40,003 men as an additional force for that
of the United Kingdom called England.
Mr. Johnstone rose, and said, that no man in or out of that House, was more disposed than himself to employ the most vigorous efforts, and make the most important facrifices, that might be necessary for the support of the honour and independence of the country, or more defirous to use the most strenuous measures, than he was, to weather the enormous and overgrown power of France. But, fully impressed as he was with these sentiments, and determined as he ever should be in that difpofition, he did not know that any exertions however great, or any facrifices however large, could place the country in a greater degree of security, than it would have been maintained in, had the late peace been preserved. If there should appear to be any force either in what he had said, or what he had yet to add, it would only lead to give some effect to the mediation which he understood to be now offered through the interference of the Court of Russia. What, he would ask, were the objects which led to the war? Ostensibly, as he understood it, the objects were these: the annexation of Piedmont, the invafion of Switzerland, the demand of the surrender of Malta, and soine other points, which, however, appeared to be of a subordinate nature. But, on a due consideration, however conspicuous these points stood in his Majesty's declaration, he was convinced that the two first at least were not the grounds of the present war. On the 29th of January, it appeared, from the papers now on the table, that the Ministers resolved to conform to the stipulations of the treaty of Amiens, and considered the guarantee of Rusia as a sufficient security for Malta. Nothing happened to alter their minds or shake their determination, from that time till the 9th of April, except the mission of Sebastiani to Egypt. He would not at present argue, whether it was or was not that