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The 1909 Hansard Trawl - with Posties, a menace to the people of Stockport and electoral malpractice in West Belfast

Thin pickings today, alas.

Behold the long arm of the law, dealing with the menace of unlicensed saw sharpeners:

Mr. TYSON WILSON asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if his attention has been called to the action of the Stockport magistrates, who, on the 4th instant, fined a man named Mark Hope 5s. for following his occupation of a saw sharpener without having a licence; and, if not, whether he will make inquiries into the case with the object of remitting the fine?


Mr. GLADSTONE I have made inquiry in the case, but find no ground for advising a remission of the sentence. The man, though warned, persisted in acting as a pedlar without having a licence. He had ample means to pay for the licence, which costs only 5s.

I am sure the burghers of Stockport (twinned with Beziers, by the way) were really grateful for being rid of this menae to the commonweal.

Yet more horrors from across the Irish Sea:

Mr. DEVLIN asked the Chief Secretary for Ireland whether his attention has been called to the statement made by Mr. W. J. Johnston, barrister-at-law, revising barrister for Belfast, in the Belfast Revision Court, on Monday, 4th October, to the effect that the question of rates in connection with the franchise plays an important part in Belfast; that since the commencement of the revision he had acquired a judicial knowledge of the fact that hundreds of voters in West Belfast, who otherwise would be entitled to the franchise, had lost their votes on account of the non-payment of rates; that this result happened through agents or landlords wrongly returning to the corporation as vacant houses that are in reality occupied by tenants; that in this way large sums of money are lost to the ratepayers, and a large number of citizens deprived of their political and civic rights

Now that's low.

Mr. BIRRELL My attention has been called to the statement in question, and I have communicated with Mr. Johnston on the subject. He informs me that the statements are based upon the evidence which came before him in the various cases during the course of the revision, but that it would not be possible for him now to furnish the names of the persons disfranchised for non-payment of rates or of the landlords and agents concerned. It It is presumed that the mention in the question of wrong returns by landlords and agents as to houses being vacant which are not so in fact, refers to returns made in pursuance of requisitions delivered under the ninth Section of the Representation of the People Act, 1884. If so, I am advised that the delivery of such false returns would be a failure to comply with the requisition to fill up the forms accurately, and that the person so offending would be liable to the penalties specified in the section to be recovered on summary conviction.

Indeed.  Makes a change from the shenanigans one normally associates with the electoral roll in West Belfast.

And in the best traditions of contrived linkage of past events with contemporary ones, turbulent posties.  Ish.

Mr. STEADMAN  asked the Postmaster-General whether, in view of the fact that a scale of wages to govern the electric light employés in his Department has been submitted by the executive of the association to which the men belong, he is in a position to signify his acceptance of the rates; and, if not, will he state the grounds upon which his objection to the rates is based?

 

Mr. BUXTON  The Select Committee on Post Office Servants recommended (paragraph 598 of Report) that, as regards the electric light staff, the Post Office should pay the wages and observe the conditions of service which are from time to time agreed upon in the various districts by the organised masters and men. Inquiries on the subject are proceeding, and I hope the matter will soon be settled.


Thrilling stuff.

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