Inasmuch as the county council of Banff and the county council of Moray have in view using the waters of the watershed of the River Spey for the manufacture of electricity for use within the areas under their authority the provisions of the immediately preceding Section in so far as they relate to the River Spey and all streams and tributaries flowing into the same shall not come into operation until the expiration of 10 years after the passing of this Act, and then only in the event of the said county councils or either of them not having obtained authority for the supply of electricity within their areas as aforesaid.—[Mr. C. Barrie.]
I beg to move, "That the Clause be read a Second time."
Those who oppose this Bill, the county councils of Banff and Moray, might, in view of the nature of the proposals which have been put forward, have moved its rejection, but they have no desire to take up an uncompromising attitude, and so long as they are protected in the manner proposed in this Clause they will not take what would appear to be an extreme course. The promoters of the Bill have not quite considered the point of view of the counties of Banff and Moray. They, no doubt, have their own view, and think that by promoting the Bill they are conferring a great benefit on the counties of Inverness and neighbouring counties, and that they will bring a certain amount of employment into those areas. I am not here to say that this will not be the case, but we in Moray and Banff feel that this is a selfish Bill, and I will endeavour to show the House in a few words that that is the case.
The North of Scotland, as many hon. Members may know, is not a rich country. Each county has more or less to live on itself. There are no large pits or works, and therefore each county has to try to make the best of its natural resources. There is agriculture, and the lettings of fishings, which constitute a very large source of revenue to those who live in the counties, and, indeed, to the county
council itself. For some time past the counties of Moray and Banff have been considering the possibilities of making use of the River Spey for electrical power, and when I was in Banff last August the county council saw me in regard to the matter as to what best could be done. I advised them that the proper course to take was to get a hydro-electrical engineer to advise them. They at once took the matter in hand, and negotiations were still proceeding when this Lochaber Water Power Bill was produced. They were further encouraged to do so by the Electrical Supply Act of 1919, which, as the House knows, was the first Bill of its kind to encourage communities to utilise electricity for motive and lighting purposes. That Bill only obtained the Royal Assent in December, 1919, and it cannot be suggested that either of the counties has delayed very long in taking the necessary action for rinding out what the River Spey can do in the way of providing necessary electrical force. I will give the promoters of the Bill this credit, that they are very honest in the Clauses of their Bill, and the candour with which the Clauses are presented in view of the Act of 1919 is very refreshing indeed. For instance, Clause 63 says:
Subject to the provisions of this Act the company may by means of the waterworks or some of them raise and lower or regulate the level of the water in Loch Laggan, Loch Treig and Idir Loch and may take, appropriate, impound, store, use, collect, abstract, divert and distribute for the purposes of the undertaking, (a) The waters of the River Spey," and so on.
So far from the diversion or abstraction or appropriation of these waters which the Bill proposes being encouraged by Parliament, entirely the reverse is the case, for it was the deliberate and considered instruction of the House, expressed in Section 15 of the Electricity Supply Act, 1919, which imposed a distinct veto on taking water from any river unless provision was made for the return of the water to the place from which it was taken, so as to avoid the unnecessary destruction of fishings or injury to public health. Clause 15 of that Act said:
The Board of Trade, on the representation of the Electricity Commissioners, may, by Order, authorise any Joint Electricity Authority or any authorised undertakers to abstract water from any river, stream, canal, inland navigation, or other source and to do all such acts as may be necessary for the
purpose of enabling the Joint Electricity Authority or authorised undertakers to utilise and return the water so abstracted," and so on.
This Bill does not propose to return the water. It proposes to divert it and to take it away down to an entirely different county altogether, and to use it for commercial purposes. If the counties of Banff and Moray make use of the water they will return it, but here you have a Bill which is in direct contravention of the Electricity Act, 1919, and I wish to say quite candidly that it is a very one-sided Bill indeed that allows anything of that sort. One of the most important points in the Electricity Act was the Clause which I have quoted, and I would ask what is the good of the House of Commons passing an Act of Parliament as a protection for the community if private Bills are to be promoted in direct contravention of it. In this Bill not only is there no provision for the return of the water to the parent stream, but they are taking the water to an entirely different stream altogether for use for commercial purposes. What is going to happen to the counties through which this water previously went? What the promoters say in effect is: "We will take the water so long as there is a flow of 40,000,000 gallons in 24 hours at certain times." In other words, they propose to attempt to teach Nature her business. Look at Clause 54 of the Bill. Sub section (2) says:
On any day during such time as the flow of water in the River Spey at Laggan Bridge shall be less than at the rate of 40,000,000 gallons per day of 24 hours the company shall not be entitled to abstract or divert any water from the said rivers . … but during such time as the flow of water in the River Spey at Laggan Bridge is in excess of the aforesaid rate the company may abstract or divert all or any part of the water of the said rivers . … in excess of what is required to provide the foresaid rate of flow in the River Spey at Laggan Bridge.
One likes the candour of that. Nature has arranged the contour of the country, and who is to say that Nature is wrong? I have had some experience in other places as to diverting the course of water, and I know how dangerous it is to interfere with the works of Nature. Sanitation, fishing, everything else that follows is interfered with, no matter how certain the authorities may feel that everything will be right. The county councils of Banff and Moray do not think that in this
matter they are being protected. What is the real position in regard to this Bill so far as those councils are concerned? The Spey belongs to the counties of Banff and Moray, through which it flows most, and in which the greatest volume of its water is. It may begin in Inverness, but the better part of the river is in Banff and Moray, and it is idle for the supporters of the Bill to say that it flows mainly through Inverness. I see that they have issued a paper in support of the Bill, and I must say that I think Paragraph 14 is—I do not say intentionally—a little misleading. For the benefit of English Members who may not know that part of the world, I may say that it is much the same as saying that the Thames has nothing to do with London simply because it flows mostly through Oxfordshire, and that, because there is sometimes too much water flowing down, it should be diverted. The Spey has never been considered an Inverness-shire river. I understand that the promoters require some 60,000 horse-power, and that can be had from rivers there other than the Spey; but here is 10,000 horse-power which lies hard by, and it is a great inducement for them to carry their works a little further along, and impound or, as they say in the Bill, appropriate, another 10,000 horse-power which they can get practically for nothing. This Bill, so far as the waters of the Spey are concerned, is nothing less than a piece of what I consider to be daylight robbery.
I suppose it does. 10,000 horsepower is what they expect to get from the waters of the Spey. How much is that worth? How much would any commercial man pay for an extra 10,000 horsepower? He would pay a good deal, but what do the people promoting this Bill propose to pay for it? Nothing at all. They simply take it—impound it. Do they imagine that the people of Banffshire and Morayshire will sit quietly by and see the River Spey appropriated at its source, even although only 25,000,000 gallons of water are taken from it? Let me give another example. What would the people in the Thames Valley think if the people, say, at Bristol thought that they would like to have a little of the Thames water, and impounded it in the Cotswolds, saying to the people in the Thames Valley that because they had too much they would take a little from them. Who is to benefit by this Bill? Is it the community of Inverness? I do not think it is. Although, undoubtedly, there will be some benefit to them, most of the benefit goes to a private commercial company, the British Aluminium Company, the profits of which are not held in Inverness, but all over the country. It will go into other people's pockets, so that there will be very little advantage, although there may be some, accruing to the people of Inverness. A certain amount of employment will be given for a time, but I doubt very much whether as much employment will be given as would be the case were electricity developed in Banffshire and Morayshire for the running of mills and factories. The river belongs to them; why should they not have the water power of which these people literally intend to rob them from the Spey?
As I said at the beginning, we do not wish to adopt what may be called a dog-in-the-manger policy, and, so far as Clause 53 is concerned, we think that nothing could be fairer than to add this proposed Clause 53A. We might have moved to reject the Bill, but we prefer to take this course. I think it will appeal to the House that, while the counties of Banff and Moray might have taken the obvious course of moving to reject the Bill altogether, they would like to see it go through, provided that the waters of the Spey are not taken. There is another point to which I desire to draw attention, namely, the pollution of the river. The medical officers of health have said that, in their opinion, in a dry summer season the sewage is just approaching danger point, and they warn the county councils that if the water is impounded at the source of the river, as proposed in this Bill, they will not be responsible for the consequences. I hope that the House will agree with me that the councils of Banff and Moray are behaving with great generosity in making this proposal.
I beg to second the Motion. It has been said that this Bill comes before the House as an agreed Measure, but on that there is a very direct conflict of opinion. I understand that the proposal of the promoters of the Bill was that compensation
water should be sent down the Spey to the extent of 25,000,000 gallons per day, coupled with the condition that, upon 12 days in the year, there should be an artificial spate sending down 100,000,000 gallons. That was the position when the Chairman of the Committee announced the decision of the Committee in the following words:
The Committee are of opinion that the Preamble of the Bill is proven, subject to the learned counsel for the promoters of the Bill submitting Clauses to carry out the following alterations. The natural flow of the Upper Spey above the point of intake is not to be obstructed up to a flow of 30,000,000 gallons per 24 hours. In addition, the Spey District Fishery Board shall have the right to demand that on any 12 days in the year, when the flow of the river shall be sufficient for the purpose, it shall not be obstructed until it reaches a flow of 100,000,000 gallons.
That being the decision of the Committee, the counsel representing the county of Moray, and also the counsel representing the county of Banff, retired from the scene, as the matter was then, so far as they were concerned, decided against them, and they did not in any way acquiesce in that decision. However, it seems that on a subsequent day the promoters of the Bill and the Committee had some further interview and communication, and on that occasion the Chairman had before him a proposal which, apparently, had been arrived at with the counsel representing the Spey Fishery Board—not the counsel representing the County Council of Moray or of Banff; and that that particular counsel, representing the Spey Fishery Board, and the Committee, came to an agreement to increase the 30,000,000 gallons per day to 40,000,000, but to do away with the requirement that there should be an artificial spate on 12 days in the year. The terms were, therefore, completely varied after the County Councils of Moray and Banff had disappeared from the scene. Then the Chairman asks, on this agreement being come to between this particular party and the Committee:
I first of all require from somebody responsible a serious and valid undertaking that this is now an agreed Bill and that no party of any sort or kind would oppose the Bill while it is in another place.
The Council for the Spey Fishery Board answered:
I can give an absolute undertaking on the part of the Spey Fishery Board. I can give an absolute undertaking on the part of the Seafield Trustees. I believe I am right
in saying that the County Council's opposition here was to support the case of the Spey Fishery Board, and I believe I am right in saying that so far as they are concerned the settlement with the Board will be a settlement with the County Council.
The chairman said:
Is counsel here representing the Count Council?
Mr. CLODE: They have now gone away.
The CHAIRMAN: I really do not think I can vary the finding.
Mr. CLODE: Might it he put in this way, that it shall be conditional on the withdrawal of the opposition of the County Council, which I believe will be withdrawn.
Well it is not withdrawn, and we are here to voice it. That, I think, clears the ground as to the agreed Bill.
We come to another point. In this Bill we have a new precedent being created. We have had in this country a good many cases where the head waters of a river have been impounded and diverted to some other water shed for the benefit of some public authority. We have never had, as far as I know, a single case where the water of the upper part of the river has been diverted from one watershed to another for the benefit of the shareholders in a public company—a private company in one sense, but a public company, of course, in the other. Here is the House of Commons, if it passes this Bill without this new Clause, going to create a dangerous precedent that private adventurers, if you may call shareholders in a company adventurers, should come to the House of Commons, and in a small Committee of four Members, not one of whom, as far as I know, was a Scotsman, or knew very much personally about it, pass this Bill to take away the waters from the Spey to give them to a company, to divert them at the head waters of the Spey and send them down to the other side of Scotland for the benefit of a private company. I ask the House to pause before it agrees to such a policy as that.
Another point is that this is a gift of very great value, and there is nothing being paid for it. There is no compensation whatever. The only compensation suggested is that the flooding of certain Laughlands in the upper part of the river's source will be minimised, if not prevented. I very gravely doubt whether that would be the real effect, because, as far as I know, there is a minimum guarantee, but there is no thing in the Bill to prevent the promoters letting the whole flood go down Morayshire. It is true they have to give a minimum every day, but so far as I have read in the Bill there is nothing to prevent them sending the whole flood down Morayshire, though they say they intend to do something else with it. Therefore there is no benefit to the people on the banks of the Spey, either in Inverness-shire or in Morayshire, in connection with the proposal to divert the waters from their natural flow.
The next point I should like to make is this: It is very necessary, both from the point of view of health and of the fisheries, which are valuable on this river, that there should from time to time be strong floods, or spates as we call them, clearing the course of the river to benefit the public health and to allow the salmon to go up the river. It is in the upper regious of the Spey, in the very catchment area that the promoters of the Bill have coveted, that the clouds burst and the rainfall comes, and if that area is to be dealt with and that storm water to be diverted somewhere else, certainly the River Spey will lose a great benefit of Nature which we can hardly estimate in words, because no one knows what the amount of water is that falls in these floods in the upper part of the Spey, but it rises in the highest part of the mountains in Scotland where the clouds sometimes burst and the water comes down in great volume, and it is very necessary for the benefit of the Spey, both on health grounds and on the ground of the preservation of the fisheries. I want to represent this case from the point of view of the people of the county of Moray on three grounds. First of all, the fisheries, and, secondly, in connection with health, because it is very essential that there should be a good scouring of the river. In the opinion of the medical officers of health, the quantity of water that flows in the Spey at its lowest point is barely sufficient to keep the river scoured and the conditions healthy for the inhabitants who live on its banks.
There is another very important point—the generation of electric power. I have taken a great deal of interest in this question of electric power. I was the Chairman of a Committee that investigated the subject very patiently for a long time, and on whose Report the Electricity Bill of 1919 was largely founded. It was contemplated in that Bill that the Electricity Commissioners, when established, should take into consideration schemes for different areas in the country whereby electricity might be most economically and beneficially produced. That Bill only became an Act of Parliament on 23rd December, 1919, and in October, 1920, ten months later, this company takes proceedings to get these powers that it now seeks from Parliament, so that the County Councils of Moray and Banff had a period of ten months during which they might have initiated action and the Electricity Commissioners had an equal period during which they in their turn might have initiated action. But the Electricity Commissioners did nothing during that time in connection with the area of Scotland to which I have referred. They did nothing to investigate the need, or the possibilities of supplying that need, from the waters of the Spey. The local County Councils, both for Moray and Banff, as is usual with Scotch county councils, have the characteristics of the Scotsman. They are deliberate, they are cautious, and they are prudent, and small blame to them. Consider what was the position in 1920. Wages at their highest point and prices at the highest point. Could you expect that any reasonable county council would, during such conditions as that, have taken in hand a scheme to develop electric power from the Spey? Moreover, how was it possible, in a condition of such abnormal prices as ruled in 1920, to know what was going to be the cost of your scheme, and at what price, therefore, you could supply electric power? It was not possible, and it is only fair to those county councils to give them the longer time which is proposed under this new Clause, so that they may deliberately, when things are normal, consider the situation. They have already made some inquiries. The hon. Member for Banff has told the House that the county council there appointed an engineer to investigate the matter from their point of view. The County Council of Moray did not appoint an engineer, I understand, until this Bill was introduced or foreshadowed, at any rate until notice was given, and then they appointed an engineer, who has made some investigations of a tentative character for that county. So far as those investigations go they show that there would be a considerable consumption of electricity both for power and light in those areas. We all know that these are not the great industrial areas of the country, but for that reason why should we starve or in any way interfere with the development of such industries as they have. Moreover, no one can fore tell what other industries may grow up in a district of that kind. Who would have thought of aluminium going to Fort William, even a few years ago? When we were boys no one would have dreamed of such a thing. Are we to say that the Spey or the Spey Valley is to be precluded from developments in the future? I think not. Therefore, I say, give the county councils time to consider this matter with that deliberation and that prudence which shoul be rightly conceded to them.
I want to put these considerations very strongly before the House. With respect to the witnesses who were called, I have no doubt they got before the Committee the hearing to which they were entitled; but I do not think that the Committee fully appreciated the position of Scottish counties such as Moray and Banff. I do not see that any harm could be done to the promoters of this Bill by the new Clause that we ask the House to pass, because the promoters have given the Committee to understand that even if the 10,000 horse-power which they look to obtain from the Spey was not conceded to them, that that would not necessarily interfere with the scheme. The total horse-power that they are going to get from the other watersheds on the Inverness-shire side and Fort William side is, I understand, 62,000 horsepower, and they wish to get 10,000 horsepower in addition from the upper waters of the Spey. I understand that they gave the Committee to understand that even if they did not get their 10,000 horsepower from the Spey it would not wreck the scheme. If that be so, and as they have said that 50,000 horse-power is the economical unit they desire to set up, that is another argument why we might well dispute their getting possession of the extra 10,000 horse-power from the Spey, if the counties of Moray and Banff require it for themselves.
I am sorry to have to intrude my presence to-night, and I do so, having no personal interest of any kind in this Bill, merely as Chairman of the Committee which considered the Bill. I have been one of the chairmen of Private Bill Committees in this House for 11 years, and I and those who sit with me have always felt it to be our duty to give very serious consideration to all the matters that come before us. Therefore, I cannot accept for one single moment the statement made by the right hon. Gentleman (Sir A. Williamson) that the evidence did not receive the greatest possible consideration, and did not have due weight with the Committee. At the present time it is the absolute duty of a Committee of the House of Commons to see that there shall be no great waste of money if they can possibly avoid it, and that districts should be put to very heavy expenses for the duplication of evidence, is a thing against which, so long as I am Chairman of a Private Bill Committee, I shall set my face.
This Bill, in the unanimous opinion of the Committee before which it came, is one of the very greatest national importance. It is not a question of profits going into the pockets of ordinary shareholders, but it is a great attempt by what we have always supported in this House, namely, the action of private individuals to endeavour to conserve for the national welfare a very great public asset. During the War we suffered intensely from the want of many of those things that were necessary. It is well known that the want of aluminium was a very great misfortune, and that we had to make our purchases abroad. In this country there is the British Aluminium Company, and there is a company in Wales. These were facts which the Committee had to take into consideration. Moreover, the Committee had evidence that the British Aluminium Company were endeavouring to get 72,000 horse-power for the purpose of making this absolutely necessary article, which is vital to the interests of the country, and in so doing they give increased employment and would take another 3,000 more people into their works. That was another point that I as Chairman and my fellow-members were bound to take into serious consideration. It is not for me to point out the troubles of the present time, or to point out the unemployment that exists and the difficulties which must face any Government in finding means of employment, but I say that it is necessary that any Committee upstairs should take into serious consideration these vital points.
I come to the Bill itself. We had to consider the points I have mentioned, and it was our duty to go very carefully into the evidence. First of all, we had to decide whether it was possible in any shape to obtain 72,000 horse power. Another scheme was brought forward by those opposing the Bill, but it broke down on the evidence of their own engineer, who said that it was impossible for them to do it, because of the enormous length of pipe and the enormous cost to the promoters. Therefore, we were driven back to the waters of the Spey. I allow at once that the waters of the Spey are in a different watershed from the rest of the waters which this Bill proposes to take. I consider that you are entitled to divert waters from one water-shed to another if you are going to serve a great national purpose. The Mover and Seconder of the new Clause say that it will not wreck the Bill. It is absolutely a wrecking Clause, and there has never been a Clause devised with greater certainty than that if accepted by this House it would absolutely wreck the Bill with which it was concerned.
Let us consider the proposed diversion of the waters of the Spey for this national purpose. From what source are the waters to be diverted? From the head waters of the Spey. The opponents of the Bill would not say that they have any proprietary rights over the head waters of the Spey. I put that question to a witness. I asked him whether they had any right if anybody else diverted it, and what possible action they could take. He suggested that they would be poachers, and I said: "You would seem to be as much poachers yourselves, if you insisted upon taking these waters, as those who were taking them now, and whom you dub as poachers." The county councils of Moray and Banff say they want the waters of the Spey for electricity purposes, but we had evidence, which they were absolutely unable to disprove, that it was impossible for them to erect any real power station there, and that any power they got would be of no value because the fall of the Spey to the sea is so gentle that they would never get sufficient power to develop any real horse power. I am trying to put the case which for seven anxious days I had to consider, and it is not an easy task be- cause I want to cover all the points and yet to be brief. I am not interested except to prove that the chairman and his colleagues on this committee gave the greatest possible consideration to the subject and gave the decision which they thought was right. On the Spey proper there is not sufficient fall for the erection of a power station of any value.
The engineer opposing this Bill was examined and cross-examined, and I put some leading questions to him myself, and his evidence was that he had been consulted for the first time exactly one month before he put in an appearance in the box. I leave the House to draw its own conclusions, but those who have been engaged in work for a great many years in this House know that this is not the first time that this procedure has been taken, where you want to oppose a Bill and hastily call in people in order to have an opinion given which will lead to the supposition that they have been for a long time, considering these points. I was told by my hon. Friend opposite that under the Electricity Act one was not allowed to abstract water without returning it. I have here the Electricity Supply Act, 1919, and I find that that does not apply to this case. If the case of my hon. Friends opposite is as good as they say, they might at all events deal fairly with us.
We sat for seven days. We had evidence before us, clear and concise, that this was a national project which would be of immense service to the country, that it would employ very many people, and that though it would divert the waters of the Spey, it would divert waters which could be of no possible use on any great scale if left as they are. The very last thing I would like to do is to ruin a small industry, a sporting industry—for I regard the salmon industry as a sporting industry. One does not ruin one industry to help another. Therefore, we had to consider carefully the evidence of witnesses brought forward to oppose this on behalf, of the Spey Fishery Board, and we came to the conclusion that what they desired was, in order that the salmon might run, that they might have the full advantage of the summer freshets. When the river is at its lowest, we were told that 10,000,000 gallons flow down the Spey on a very dry day in summer. The Com- mittee very carefully considered all the points and gave their ruling. They were unanimous on this question, and I believe that their decision was right.
They decided that the average amount of water flowing down the river, guaranteed, must be increased by 5,000,000 gallons, but in order that we might obtain for the salmon industry, so that the fish might run, the full value of the summer freshets, our ruling was that on 12 days—the choice of those whose duty it was to protect the fisheries—they should be able to call for 100,000,000 gallons a day if they so chose. There were many points put afterwards to show that this was difficult or impossible, but there is no difficulty. Those who have charge of the fishing industry have only got, to say: "The river is low. The salmon are not running, and the next time there is a summer freshet we want 100,000,000 gallons in 24 hours." That was quite easy, and that was the ruling. The following day it was arranged that the Clause should be brought up. I well recollect our legal friend appearing next day on behalf of the Spey Fishery Board. His opening words were: "Mr. Chairman, I appear before you in a white garb. I have to ask you to alter your ruling." I said to him on behalf of the Committee: "It is a very serious thing to ask us to alter our ruling. On what grounds do you do it?" He said: "We had a meeting of the parties concerned and we agreed that we would prefer to have an average daily flow of 40,000,000 gallons rather than an average flow of 30,000,000 with 12 selected days of 100,000,000." I said on behalf of the Committee: "This is entirely against the weight of all your evidence and the Committee would only agree on one condition, that is that all the parties to this Bill will undertake to make it a guaranteed Bill and that there will be no further opposition to it in another place." Learned Counsel then agreed, so far as the Fishery Board were concerned and also everybody else except the Banff and Moray County Council. The Banff and Moray County Council had gone, but they were represented by their agent. In the absence of counsel the agent has a perfect right to say what he thinks, and he never raised an objection of any kind.
I disagree. There were Clauses to be considered, and there were other parties who had not been even heard on the Bill, and I take strong objection to the absence of the council, but the agent never raised any objection and left on the mind of the whole Committee the impression that this was to be an agreed Bill or we would not have varied our ruling, and if those who to-day moved the Amendment had only had the common courtesy to tell the Committee that they intended to take the action which they have taken to-night we would have communicated with the Chairman of Committees and told him, and the whole thing would have fallen through, because it was not an agreed Bill. I have formed a very strong opinion that there are other things behind this, but all I can say—
I really must ask whether the right hon. Gentleman has a right to make insinuations against the County Council of Moray without explaining what he has in his mind.
I have made no insinuations. I have said there are things behind this. I do not understand the action of my right hon. Friend now. There are motives behind this not apparent to the Committee. At all events, I cannot help thinking so.
Am I to understand that the Committee said to the promoters or the opponents, "We will do certain things if you will agree not to carry your opposition further"? If that is so, has the Committee any right to make such a stipulation? Are they not to judge whether a thing is right or wrong and not to make a bargain?
I think that is a matter left to the Chairman of the Committee to decide. If you get an agreed Bill, if it can be varied so that there will be no further opposition, and all expense will be spared, I think such action is proper action for a Committee to take. If I am Chairman of a Committee again, and the point arises, I shall do it again. I believe that the decision we gave was a right and proper decision. I believe that by our decision we have served a great industry. I believe we have given power to a great industry to employ a large number of men, and in doing that I believe we shall not have deprived any portion of Scotland of real benefit.
It will perhaps be for the convenience of the House if I explain where the Board of Trade stands in relation to this Bill and give, so far as it is in my power to do so, what advice I can to the House as to the reception of the new Clause. I use the word "advice" because I do not in the slightest degree wish any hon. Member to think that I can exert any pressure on him. At the same time it is my duty, with such knowledge as I have, to offer advice and I propose to try to do so. I doubt whether it has yet been wholly appreciated what is the effect of the new Clause. Both speakers in support of the Clause made admirable speeches from their own point of view, but they both claimed for the Clause a virtue which is about the last I should find in it—the virtue of moderation. The hon. Member for Banff (Mr. C. Barrie) said he was moving the Clause because he wished to display a spirit of moderation, and the right hon. Member for Moray (Sir A. Williamson) said there would be no harm done to the Bill if the Clause were carried. In the interests of accuracy I am bound to let the House see exactly what the Clause is. The Clause says that certain works under the Bill, which are the works referred to in Clause 53, shall not come into operation until after the expiration of ten years. From listening to my right hon. Friend one might have inferred that the works referred to in that suspension were the works at the head waters of the River Spey. I might explain that the controversy which has arisen is as to whether a company which is promoting a large water power scheme on the Atlantic sea-board of Scotland is to be entitled to divert a certain quantity of water from the head waters of the River Spey which runs to the Eastern seaboard of Scotland. It might have been apprehended from the remarks of the right hon. Member for Moray that what it was desired to suspend was the work in connection with the River Spey.
Then the Clause has been altered since yesterday. My right hon. Friend has evidently anticipated the first point I was making on the subject. But the right hon. Member omits all reference to Clause 61, from which hon. Members will see that whereas under the proposed new Clause, if carried, nothing is to happen for ten years, under Clause 61, if the works authorised by this Act are not completed in ten years, the powers cease altogether. The House will therefore apprehend the true effect of carrying this Amendment. That effect will be to abrogate altogether the powers in the Bill. The function of the Government in cases of this kind is confined to two questions—first, is the proposed undertaking substantially for the benefit of the community; secondly, are the rights of the community duly safeguarded? There is a further point for consideration by this House. It is, Has due consideration been given to any possible prejudice to the rights of some individual members of the community if the proposal is carried into effect? I will offer such advice as I can as to the first two considerations. First, is it substantially for the benefit of the community? To that the answer is in the affirmative. With what commodity it is to deal? It is to deal with the manufacture principally of aluminium.
As has been said, aluminium is a substance with which during the War we had considerable concern. I refrain from saying anything about key industries. I do not put it quite as high as that, but the making of it is of very great interest and importance to this country, and it becomes increasingly important, as the production of aluminium has gradually increased. In 1900 the world production was 5,000 tons, and in 1913 it had risen to 100,000 tons, and now it is something like 200,000 tons per annum. The German production—which shows its importance in time of war—has increased from some thing like 800 tons in a year to something approaching 30,000 tons. Under these circumstances the House will see that aluminium is a substance of increasingly great commercial importance. There is another thing which deserves consideration. In the process of production an extraordinarily large—a surprisingly large—quantity of electric horse-power is consumed. To produce 1 ton of aluminium requires 5 electric horse-power going day and night for a year. It will be appreciated that when you come to production on a large scale if you are to produce cheaply you must also produce power on a large scale, so a further reason from the point of view of the community is in regard to the development of power. In these years in which we are living—as is borne out by contemporary circumstances—we are passing through a transition stage, and we are slowly passing from coal to some other power. After all, we are within conceivable sight of, I do not say the end of our coal resources, but the serious depletion of those coal resources. We have to find, and the world has to find, other sources of power. All over the world the keenest minds are trying to discover alternative sources of power. Oil, so far as our knowledge goes, is, like coal, a limited supply, but we have other possible sources which may be successfully developed, such as cheap power alcohol, as to which there are great hopes that somebody will one day invent a cheap process of distillation.
There is one source of power which is capable of development at the present moment, and that is water power. We are not very well off in this country in natural resources, but we have some resources, of which this, amongst other water schemes, is one of the most potent. Therefore the Government can take no action to discourage any attempt to develop a source of power of this character. This will involve the development of areas which at the present moment are comparatively waste areas, and I may add in that connection that a Clause has been put in for the preservation of amenities which, I understand, was agreed to by the promoters. Lastly but not leastly, there is the question of employment. If the power of the under-taking is fully exercised it will give employment to 2,000 or 3,000 men, and in the course of the construction work a much greater number will be engaged. Taking all these points into consideration, we are bound to answer in the affirmative the first question, namely, Is it substantially for the benefit of the community? The second question is, Are the rights of the community properly safeguarded? On that, I think, hon. Members will see we have done our best. The Electricity Commissioners have been consulted, and are satisfied as to the provisions made for the supply of power on reasonable terms to people living in the locality, and we have made provisions in Clause 107 for reserving an eventual option to the State to repurchase or re acquire the undertaking on terms from the promotors at the expiration of a period of 30 years on one set of terms, and at the end of 60 years on another set of terms. We have done the best we can to protect the rights of those in the locality.
There only remains a third point which, as I say, is not a point really for the Board of Trade to advise upon. It is the question of whether full consideration has been given to the rights of those individuals, county councils, and others who may be prejudicially affected by the proposal. As to that, I can only speak to my fellow Members of the House, not officially, but as voicing my own opinion. I am bound to say I cannot see how in a matter of this kind this House can hope to set itself up successfully against the considered and weighty decision of its own Committee. I see no use in having a Committee at all if that is to be done. That is my opinion, and I would not be fair to the House if I did not express it. For this House to take the view that it is to act like Penelope, holding itself free to unravel all the fabrics we have most carefully woven ourselves, is a procedure that I do not think in the long run will be found desirable. In this instance the advice which I give to the House is that they shall reject the Clause which has been proposed.
As I was one of the Members who listened to the cases of the promoters and opponents of this Bill respectively, I may mention that during seven days we paid close attention to very able counsel and very voluminous evidence. I think the right hon. Gentleman and the hon. Gentleman who moved this additional Clause had not the knowledge which we had after listening to the evidence. If they had had that evidence fully before them they would hardly find themselves able to support this Clause. The mover of the Clause never mentioned that the only water which the promoters propose to take are flood waters. They do not propose to interfere with or obstruct any water from the upper reaches of the Spey. These flood waters are, and have been for the last 60 years, a source of very considerable damage to the lands in the region of the River Spey above the town of Rothes. The Committee insisted upon the promoters increasing the size of the conduit by which they brought off these flood waters so that the damage to the lands, so far as it was caused by floods by the Upper Spey, might be entirely avoided. I understand that on this Clause there is no longer any question of damage to the fishing industry. We very carefully considered that on the Committee, and the representatives of the Spey fishing interests agreed, on concessions being made to them, to withdraw their opposition. As to the objection on the score of health, I think the medical witnesses who gave evidence before us hardly regardly the matter as serious. If the Spey were in the state which some of them hinted the Committee might believe, there would be no fish in it at all.
In regard to the reason for this new Clause, which is that the counties of Moray and Banff might, at some future time, desire to use this water for the development of electric power for industries in their own counties, that contention is entirely baseless, because the flood water from the Spey is quite unsuitable and unusable for the development of electric power in those counties. In the first place, no sane engineer would suggest building a power station to utilise only flood water, and it could not be used except by the construction of enormous reservoirs. No fall can be obtained on the Spey of any importance except by the construction of entirely unthinkable works. The engineer who had studied the matter on behalf of these counties for one month in order to give evidence before the Committee said that he did not find, and did not think it would be possible to find, in the main course of the Spey, even after considerable expenditure, a fall exceeding 80 feet. These waters, when utilised by the promoters of this Bill, would have a fall exceeding 800 feet. That is to say, the use of the water, as proposed under this Bill, will be ten times as economic as it would be with the expenditure of great sums of money if utilised in the Spey fall. As a member of that Committee I must say I think the Councils of Moray and Banff were very badly advised when they used their ratepayers' money on sending witnesses to London and on being represented before the Committee by counsel. It appeared to me that they had the very, very slightest interest in this Bill at all. The House will hardly believe that none of the promoters' works are even in or anywhere near the two counties. The Mover of this Clause drew a comparison with London and the Thames. The position of these counties is just what it would be if the counties of Essex and Kent spent their ratepayers' money on opposing a scheme, say, of the County Council of Oxford shire to divert the flood waters of the Thames. It is a matter in which these counties have a very slight interest, and certainly not enough to incur the expenses which they have incurred. However, that is a matter for them.
I can assure the House that it is practically impossible for these counties, or the County of Inverness, which might have the first claim on the waters which fall and run through their counties to utilise those waters to develop electric power in any way whatever. If the counties of Banff and Moray do want to develop electric power with the waters of the Spey, it has many tributaries, quite as important as the Upper Spey, which have a good fall in their territory and can be used to develop a very considerable amount of power. It appears to me that the House should entirely reject this Clause, which is, in effect, a wrecking Clause. [HON. MEMBERS: "NO, no!" and "Hear, hear!"] After hearing what the objects of the Bill were, and the opponents of the Bill, I say that, in my opinion, this is a wrecking Clause, and nothing else. I think it is in the interests of the nation, and therefore it is an interest that ought to be forwarded by this House, that this Bill should become law and be carried into effect, because it will provide, not only an important national industry, but a great deal of labour on the construction of the works and permanent employment for 2,000 or 3,000 men, which is very much wanted.
The effect of this Clause has been rightly pointed out by the hon. Baronet the Parliamentary Secretary to the Board of Trade. If it is accepted the scheme of the British Aluminium Company, which they have promoted under this Bill, will be effectively wrecked. I rise for the purpose of making, on behalf of the county of Inverness, which I represent in this House, some observations in reply to the speeches made by my hon. Friends the right hon. Member for Moray (Sir A. Williamson) and the hon. Member for Banff (Mr. C. Barrie). I rather think that the House may be under the impression that the purpose and scope of this Bill is to take and divert waters from the River Spey to the detriment of the counties of Moray and Banff. That is a total misconception of the scheme promoted by this Bill. The Bill incorporates for the first time in the highlands of Scotland a power company, which is composed of eminent commercial and business men, with a strong financial backing behind them who promote this company, with a capital of £3,000,000, which is to be devoted to development of very great water power at present running to waste in the county of Inverness. There are two great valleys in Inverness. One is the valley of the Spean, and on the other side of the hill there is the valley of the Spey. The two valleys, however, are closely connected with each other, so much so that it is known that upon large floods the waters which naturally would have gone into the Spey have fallen into the other valley of the Spean. The main proposals in this Bill are to develop the water power of the Spean, and, by using the lakes Loch Laggan and Loch Treig for storage purposes, to acquire 50,000 horsepower per annum from the water there stored. The reason why the headwaters of the River Spey come into this scheme at all arises partly by accident. For over 50 years the people who live in the top of the Spey Valley, between Kincraig and New to more, have been suffering very great loss by the floodings of the top waters of the Spey. I have myself seen haystacks and stock being carried down by those flood waters. Every person who knows the district knows that the roads in the locality have been seriously damaged by flood water and also that the interests of agriculture have seriously suffered, not merely by the destruction of the stock, but also by injury to the land, and what the promoters of this Bill did was to say, "We shall impound, not the average flow of the River Spey at all, but a certain proportion of the flood waters of the river, and use these for the purposes of developing power in our power station which will have the result of freeing the inhabitants of Speyside from all the loss and injury which these floods have caused them." That is the aim and scope of the Bill. It is suggested that the people of Moray and Banff will be prejudiced, but before one gallon of floodwater can be taken from the Spey, its flow must not be less than 40,000,000 gallons per 24 hours, which is five times in excess of the ordinary summer flow of that river.
The right hon. Baronet has not really read the evidence. Before one gallon of the headwaters of the Spey can be taken by the promoters, there must flow down the river five times the average flow of the river during the summertime, and, therefore, when that is the situation, it seems idle to suggest that there is any difficulty arising in connection with this scheme. The other suggestion that I think was made by the hon. Member for Banff was that the provisions of the Electricity Act, 1919, had not been complied with. There again he is under a complete misconception. That matter was dealt with fully, and I am sure the Committee would never have passed this scheme if the Statute had not been fully complied with. My hon. Friend referred to the engineer to his county, whose services had been engaged to give evidence in connection with the scheme. What does this gentleman say about the value of the floodwaters of the Spey to the county of Banff?
I am obliged for the correction. It corrects a mistake. At all events the fact now appears to be that the county of Banff did not take the trouble to send an engineer to the Committee to give evidence. The engineer who was examined on this particular subject was asked this question:
You have got to get a certain length of the river before you can get a heading, have you not?
Answer: "I think I made that clear. I consider that the upper part of the Spey is out of the question.
That is to say, the effect of that gentleman's evidence was this, that Moray and Banff could not make any use whatever of the waters which the promoters of this undertaking were taking. The opinion of all the engineers is to this effect, that the counties of Moray and Banff strike the River Spey 40 miles away from the works which the promoters propose to undertake, and that the Spey when it flows through Moray and Banff is a very slow flowing river, and it seems very difficult to suppose that these counties would ever be able to make any economic use of the Spey River under any circumstances. My point is that neither in the evidence nor in the speeches of my hon. Friends can you get any real foundation for any complaint in regard to this scheme when one under stands that it is confined to the flood-waters, to the top of the Spey, 40 miles away from these two counties. I should like to mention that every riparian proprietor on the Spey supports this scheme.
I can only deal with the reported evidence, and not with the opinions of those not called; but in regard to what appears on the notes of evidence every proprietor supports the promoters of the scheme. In addition to that, let me say this, that every district committee, the county council of Inverness, and every parish council in Inverness supports it. They think this scheme only does justice to the County of Inverness, because it permits the water power of the county to be used for industrial and public purposes within it. It is fair to say that a private company are the promoters of the scheme, but I do not think the scheme is any the worse on that account. The broad fact is that this scheme will provide employment for a great many people in the Highlands and will give permanent employment to between 2,000 and 3,000 more. Although the scheme is promoted in a district which has relied mainly upon agriculture, I think the House, which has always been indulgent to the Highlands of Scotland, will be quite ready to approve of the setting up of an industry in the Highlands which can confer very great benefit on them. The Highlands are no doubt sparsely populated, and they suffer from high costs and high rates, and the agricultural conditions of the County of Inverness are such that the solution of these problems cannot be left to agriculture alone. If the development of the water power of Inverness is undertaken and industry is introduced and production increased, we can hope to find a solution of the many Highland problems which have given anxiety and consideration upon many occasions to the House of Commons. I hope my horn. Friends will not press this Clause and that the House will be unanimous in permitting the scheme to proceed.
Lieut.-Colonel A. MURRAY:
It seems to me that the House, if it passes this Bill as it stands, will be creating a precedent which may have very far-reaching consequences. I am bound to say that I am not quite sure how I ought to vote if this matter is pressed to a Division. I have the honour of representing a district which includes the watersheds of both the Dee and the Don. I am bound to ask myself, if this Bill is passed to-night, how the precedent created will affect these particular districts—
I bow to your ruling, Sir. May I refer to a certain remark which fell from the Lord Advocate? The hon. and learned Gentle man held out to the House as one of the things to which they should give consideration, and with regard to which they ought to pass this Clause, this fact: He alleged the spates which come down the Spey carried with them destruction to livestock, haystacks, and the agricultural industry generally. He said one of the objects of this Bill was to free the inhabitants of Spey side from the injury inflicted by these floods. If that is one of the objects of the Bill in respect of the Spey, undoubtedly this House will be inundated by appeals, if not from local bodies, from the inhabitants of every district in Scotland, to free them from the injuries to which the Lord Advocate has pointed.
Because that is not, as I understand it, the reason why the promoters of this Bill have brought it forward. It is one of the reasons the Lord Advocate has given to the House for passing it. If that is one of the reasons, or the main reason, for passing this Clause to-night, where is it going to stop? I am bound to say that if the House passes this Bill it will create a precedent which may be in the national interests or it may not. If it is, no one will give it more hearty support than I, but there are dangers in allowing Bills of this nature which take away in the interests of a private company water powers which might be converted to the national interest if the national interests were properly consulted. In the national interest, as against private interests, I am bound to record my vote against the Bill.
I would not have intervened, except that the Lord Advocate said that he represented Inverness. I speak as one of the Lord Advocate's voters, and in opposition to this Bill. I do not think sufficient attention has been paid to the fact that very great danger will be done to those lands on the side of the Spey, and through which the Spey passes—through Newton moor, Kingussie, and all that most beautiful country. I do not want to get outside the point of Order, but I understand that if this new Clause is carried it will wreck the Bill. I do not wish to wreck the Bill, nor do I wish to wreck the Spey. I want to see the Spey kept out of the Bill. Why will it wreck the Bill? I understand that it is only one-seventh of the water proposed to be impounded which comes from the Spey. Surely if that is the case we are only using by one-seventh the water-power that is proposed to be accumulated for the purposes of private gain, and you are taking away from the East of Scotland water which the Almighty intended should go to the East of Scotland. I question whether the whole of Inverness is in favour of this Bill. The County Council has given its decision in favour of it, but we often hear that majorities have given decisions in favour of a certain thing, and have not considered the smaller localities. I am in one of the smaller localities. I see certain parishes mentioned in this Bill, but I do not see the parish of Duthil, in which I reside, mentioned in the Bill.
Again, I am told that no water is to be taken from the Spey until 40,000,000 gallons has come down. If that is so, what does the Sub-section of the Bill mean where it talks about 20,000,000 gallons; and that weir No. 10 is to be erected so that it would not come into action until 20,000,000 gallons has passed down the Spey. There seems to be some considerable discrepancy in these two sets of figures. I have seen the Spey almost dry at certain places, places where you usually look for water, places where additional charm is lent by the river to the beautiful landscape—and hon. Members of this House might do worse than go for their holidays to Speyside. If great care is not taken the House is going to inflict great hardship on the people who live on the banks of the Spey. Where are you going to stop? I have had to do with water companies before. I am dealing with one at the present time in one of the Eastern Counties. They said they were only going to take a very little of the water, and they said they would put up five or seven miles of fences
for me if it were necessary. They have had to do it because they have taken the whole of the water. I ask the House to pause before interfering with this water supply created by the Almighty, before they pass this Bill which may be doing great harm to a very important section of the Scottish nation.
It has been said that you cannot possibly do any harm to a river by taking out its water, but that is not so. Up to the present the Government has not given us any hint as to which lobby we should go into upon this Bill. All I wish to say is that if you are going to take the waters of the Spey in the manner provided by this Bill you are going to do a great deal of harm to the salmon fishing in that river. I hope hon. Members will recollect when they go into the Division Lobby that this Bill will do harm.
I am not going to discuss this Clause on its merits because it is simply a wrecking proposal, and on that account I am going to vote against it. If this Bill is wrecked it will be a calamity to the whole of the Highlands. The scheme proposed in this Measure provides work for a large number of people who are engaged at certain seasons of the year in the fishing industry. I should have liked it better if this Measure had been promoted by a public authority, but we cannot wait for the millennium although people live for a long time in the Highlands. I have known schemes of this kind have been talked about in the days of my grandfather, and we are talking about them still and nothing has been done, and I am sure this Measure will confer very great benefit upon the Highlands.
|Division No. 157.]||AYES.||[10.0 p.m.|
|Adamson, Rt. Hon. William||Graham, D. M. (Lanark, Hamilton)||Marriott, John Arthur Ransome|
|Banbury, Rt. Hon. Sir Frederick G.||Grant, James Augustus||Mills, John Edmund|
|Barker, G. (Monmouth, Abertillery)||Griffiths, T. (Monmouth, Pontypool)||Morgan, Major D. Watts|
|Betterton, Henry B.||Hartshorn, Vernon||Murray, Hon. A. C. (Aberdeen)|
|Bowerman, Rt. Hon. Charles W.||Hoare, Lieut.-Colonel Sir S. J. G.||Myers, Thomas|
|Bowyer, Captain G. W. E.||Hogge, James Myles||Nicholson, William G. (Petersfield)|
|Boyd-Carpenter, Major A.||Houston, Robert Patterson||Oman, Sir Charles William C.|
|Cape, Thomas||John, William (Rhondda, West)||Perkins, Walter Frank|
|Cautley, Henry Strother||Johnstone, Joseph||Richardson, R. (Houghton-le-Spring)|
|Chadwick, Sir Robert Burton||Kennedy, Thomas||Robertson, John|
|Craik, Rt. Hon. Sir Henry||Lawson, John James||Roundell, Colonel R. F.|
|Davies, Thomas (Cirencester)||Lyle, C. E. Leonard||Royden, Sir Thomas|
|Edwards, G. (Norfolk, South)||Maclean, Neil (Glasgow, Govan)||Spencer, George A.|
|Falle, Major Sir Bertram Godfray||MacVeagh, Jeremiah||Surtees, Brigadier-General H. C.|
|Townley, Maximilian G.||Waterson, A. E.||TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—|
|Ward, Col. L. (Kingston-upon-Hull)||Wills, Lt.-Col. Sir Gilbert Alan H.||Mr. C. Barrie and Sir A. William-|
|Waring, Major Walter||Wilson, Lt.-Col. Sir M. (Bethnal Gn.)||son.|
|Allen, Lieut.-Colonel William James||Harmsworth, C. B. (Bedford, Luton)||Pownall, Lieut.-Colonel Assheton|
|Austin, Sir Herbert||Harmsworth, Hon. E. C. (Kent)||Prescott, Major W. H.|
|Bagley, Captain E. Ashton||Hayday, Arthur||Raffan, Peter Wilson|
|Baldwin, Rt. Hon. Stanley||Henderson, Rt. Hon. A. (Widnes)||Rankin, Captain James Stuart|
|Balfour, George (Hampstead)||Hennessy, Major J. R. G.||Reid, D. D.|
|Barlow, Sir Montague||Hewart, Rt. Hon. Sir Gordon||Remnant, Sir James|
|Barnes, Rt. Hon. G. (Glas., Gorbals)||Hilder, Lieut.-Colonel Frank||Renwick, George|
|Barnett, Major Richard W.||Hinds, John||Richardson, Alexander (Gravesend)|
|Barnston, Major Harry||Hirst, G. H.||Roberts, Rt. Hon. G. H. (Norwich)|
|Bell, Lieut.-Col. W. C. H. (Devizes)||Hohler, Gerald Fitzroy||Roberts, Samuel (Hereford, Hereford)|
|Bellairs, Commander Carlyon W.||Hood, Joseph||Roberts, Sir S. (Sheffield, Ecclesall)|
|Bird, Sir A. (Wolverhampton, West)||Hopkins John W. W.||Robinson, S. (Brecon and Radnor)|
|Bird, Sir William B. M. (Chichester)||Hopkinson, A. (Lancaster, Mossley)||Rose, Frank H.|
|Blades, Sir George Rowland||Horne, Sir R. S. (Glasgow, Hillhead)||Royce, William Stapleton.|
|Blair, Sir Reginald||Hotchkin, Captain Stafford Vere||Samuel, Samuel (W'dsworth, Putney)|
|Blake, Sir Francis Douglas||Hurd, Percy A.||Sanders, Colonel Sir Robert Arthur|
|Borwick, Major G. O.||Irving, Dan||Scott, A. M. (Glasgow, Bridgeton)|
|Bowles, Colonel H. F.||Jackson, Lieut.-Colonel Hon. F. S.||Shaw, Capt. William T. (Forfar)|
|Bramsdon, Sir Thomas||James, Lieut.-Colonel Hon. Cuthbert||Smith, Sir Harold (Warrington)|
|Briant, Frank||Jephcott, A. R.||Smith, W. R. (Wellingborough)|
|Brittain, Sir Harry||Jodrell, Neville Paul||Smithers, Sir Alfred W.|
|Bromfield, William||Johnson, Sir Stanley||Sprot, Colonel Sir Alexander|
|Brown, Major D. C.||Jones, Sir Edgar R. (Merthyr Tydvil)||Stanley, Major Hon. G. (Preston)|
|Brown, James (Ayr and Bute)||Jones, Sir Evan (Pembroke)||Steel, Major S. Strang|
|Bruton, Sir James||Jones, J. T. (Carmarthen, Llanelly)||Stewart, Gershom|
|Buchanan, Lieut.-Colonel A. L. H.||Kellaway, Rt. Hon. Fredk. George||Sturrock, J. Leng|
|Buckley, Lieut.-Colonel A.||Kenworthy, Lieut.-Commander J. M.||Sutherland, Sir William|
|Butcher, Sir John George||King, Captain Henry Douglas||Swan, J. E.|
|Cairns, John||Law, Alfred J. (Rochdale)||Taylor, J.|
|Carew, Charles Robert S.||Lewis, T. A. (Glam., Pontypridd)||Terrell, George (Wilts, Chippenham)|
|Carter, W. (Nottingham, Mansfield)||Lindsay, William Arthur||Thomson, T. (Middlesbrough, West)|
|Churchman, Sir Arthur||Locker-Lampson, G. (Wood Green)||Thomson, Sir W. Mitchell-(Maryhill)|
|Cobb, Sir-Cyril||Locker-Lampson, Com. O. (H'tingd'n)||Thorne, G. R. (Wolverhampton, E.)|
|Colvin, Brig.-General Richard Beale||Lorden, John William||Waddington, R.|
|Cowan, D. M. (Scottish Universities)||McLaren, Robert (Lanark, Northern)||Wallace, J.|
|Davison, Sir W. H. (Kensington, S.)||Macleod, J. Mackintosh||Walsh, Stephen (Lancaster, Ince)|
|Dewhurst, Lieut.-Commander Harry||Macnamara, Rt. Hon. Dr. T. J.||Walton, J. (York, W. R., Don Valley)|
|Edgar, Clifford B.||Macpherson, Rt. Hon. James I.||Warren, Sir Alfred H.|
|Edwards, C. (Monmouth, Bedwellty)||Mallalieu, Frederick William||Watson, Captain John Bertrand|
|Elveden, Viscount||Malone, Major P. B. (Tottenham, S.)||Weston, Colonel John Wakefield|
|Entwistle, Major C. F.||Matthews, David||Wheler, Col. Granville C. H.|
|Erskine, J. M. M.||Mitchell, William Lane||White, Col. G. D. (Southport)|
|Evans, Ernest||Molson, Major John Elsdale||Wignall, James|
|Fell, Sir Arthur||Moore-Brabazon, Lieut.-Col. J. T. C.||Williams, Aneurin (Durham, Consett)|
|Finney, Samuel||Moreing, Captain Algernon H.||Williams, Col. P. (Middlesbrough, E.)|
|Ford, Patrick Johnston||Morison, Rt. Hon. Thomas Brash||Willoughby, Lieut.-Col. Hon. Claud|
|Foreman, Sir Henry||Morris, Richard||Wilson, Rt. Hon. J. W. (Stourbridge)|
|Forrest, Walter||Munro, Rt. Hon. Robert||Wilson, Colonel Leslie O. (Reading)|
|Fraser, Major Sir Keith||Murchison, C. K.||Wilson, W. Tyson (Westhoughton)|
|Galbraith, Samuel||Murray, Hon. Gideon (St. Rollox)||Wintringham, Thomas|
|Gilbert, James Daniel||Murray, William (Dumfries)||Wise, Frederick|
|Gillis, William||Nall, Major Joseph||Wood, Sir H. K. (Woolwich, West)|
|Gilmour, Lieut.-Colonel Sir John||Neal, Arthur||Wood, Sir J. (Stalybridge & Hyde)|
|Glanville, Harold James||Newman, Sir R. H. S. D. L. (Exeter)||Wood, Major S. Hill- (High Peak)|
|Goff, Sir R. Park||Nield, Sir Herbert||Woolcock, William James U.|
|Gould, James C.||Norris, Colonel Sir Henry G.||Worsfold, T. Cato|
|Gray, Major Ernest (Accrington)||Norton-Griffiths, Lieut.-Col. Sir John||Worthington-Evans, Rt. Hon. Sir L.|
|Green, Joseph F. (Leicester, W.)||Ormsby-Gore, Hon. William||Young, E. H. (Norwich)|
|Gregory, Holman||Parker, James||Young, Sir Frederick W. (Swindon)|
|Greig, Colonel James William||Parkinson, Albert L. (Blackpool)||Young, Robert (Lancaster, Newton)|
|Gretton, Colonel John||Parkinson, John Allen (Wigan)||Younger, Sir George|
|Gritten, W. G. Howard||Pease, Rt. Hon. Herbert Pike|
|Grundy, T. W.||Percy, Lord Eustace (Hastings)||TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—|
|Guest, J. (York, W. R., Hemsworth)||Perring, William George||Dr. Murray and Mr. Hugh|
|Hall, F. (York, W. R., Normanton)||Pinkham, Lieut.-Colonel Charles||Morrison.|
|Hannon, Patrick Joseph Henry||Polson, Sir Thomas A.|