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therefore, any adult elector or resident in the union, of either sex, is qualified for

Disqualifications are the same as those of parish councillors, referred to antet but the
disqualification is not removable as it is in certain cases of parish councillors, and certain
iurther disqualifications as to guardians are applicable to rural district councillors.


Notice of election must be published by returning officer (the clerk of the counoil).

Candidates must be nominated as in case of parish councillors.

Nomination paper, properly filled in, must be sent to the returning officer.

Nomination papers may be obtained free from returning officer or overseers.

No parochial elector can sign nomination papers for more than the number of rural
•district councillors to be elected in any one parish or area.

Returning officers deal with nomination papers, as the chairman does in the case of
parish councillors. Candidates may withdraw their candidature by giving the pre-
Boribed notice.

The number of rural district councillors is in each parish or area the same as the
number of guardians.

If the candidates validly nominated are not more in number than the number of
^Muncillors to be elected, me returning officer gives notice that no poll will be taken.

If there is to be a poll, notice is given at least five clear days before date fixed.

The date and hours of the election are the same as for parish councillors elected
for the same parish.

An elector cannot vote in more than one parish in the district, although his property
may be in several.



Under rural district councillors, antey the status and election of the guardians, and
the term of office have been explained, so far as they relate to a guardian for rural
districts, and the same apply to all guardians, whether in rural or urbMu districts outside
liondon, with one or two minor differences in the case of guardians in boroughs, which
sre noted below.


The qualification is the same whether in rural or urban districts, except in the case
of a borough, where, additionally, in case of a parish wholly or partly situate in the
borough, the residence qualification of a municipal councillor is that to qualify for a


The Polling hours for Guardians in urban districts, oth^r than boroughs, and for
urban district councillors, are the same.

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The number of copDcillors is that provided by any local or personal Acts, the County
Council having power from time to time to add to the number.

The parochial electors of the parishes in the district are the electors of the coun-
cillors of the district, and if the District Council is divided into wards the electors of
the councillors for each ward are such of the parochial electors as have qualifications
within that ward.

Each elector gives one vote and no more for each of any number of persons not
exceeding the number to be elected.

The term of office of a councillor is three years, one-third of the Council as nearly
as possible (and if the district is divided into wards one-third of such ward) going
out of office on the 16th April in each year. The County Council may, on request of an
Urban District Council, direct the members to go out simultaneously at the end of
the third year. The chairman, unless a woman, is, ex officio^ a Justice of the Peace
for the county.


A councillor must be a parochial elector of some parish within the district, or have
resided in the district during the whole of the twelve months immediately preceding
the election. No person shall be disqualified by sex or marriage.

Disqualifications are the same as those for rural district councillors and guardians.


(a) Notice of election is given by the returning officer (the clerk to the council).

Nomination paper is provided by the returning officer free of charge.

It must be signed by two parochial electors of the district, or ward, if there are

Each candidate must be nominated by a separate nomination paper, and no elector
shall sign more nomination papers than there are councillors to be elected for the district
or ward, nor shall he sign nomination papers for more than one ward.

The returning officer deals with the nominations as in the case for district coimoillors,
and publishes the names of those persons validly nominated.

A candidate may withdraw from his candidature by a notice in writing to the
returning officer.

(6) Election, — If the valid nominations do not exceed the number to be elected there
shall be no poll.

(c) Poll. — If there is to be a poll the returning officer gives notice at least five clear
days before date fixed, with full particulars of candidates.


The London Government Act, 1899, established in London, in lieu of the Parish Vebtries
and District Boards, a number of Councils which for all intents and purposes converted .
the various areas into Municipal Boroughs. Each of these boroughs is governed by a
Council, consisting of a Mayor, Aldermen, and Councillors. The qualification for the
office of Councillor is the same as for members of Parish Councils, and the electors are
the parochial electors as defined by the Local Government Act of 1894. Any person on
any list of voters for the parish is a parochial elector, and, therefore, is entitled to vote
and to be a candidate (except women) for the office of Councillor.


If a candidate, or a number of candidates combined, determine to institute a canvass
of the parish, and to hold meetings, distribute bills, &c., with a view to their election, it
is desirable that they should know the provisions of the law as regards such matters,
and the limitations which it puts upon their action.


The Local Government Act, 1894, does not apparently contemplate that any large
expense will be incurred by candidates at Elections under the Act, since no maximum
sum has been laid down by it, nor is any return of expenses required to be made by
Candidates, as in the case of Parliamentary and Municipal Elections.

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The general provisions of Election law against bribery, treating, nndne influence,
personation, illegal practices, illegal uayments, employment and hiring, apply, however,
to Parish Council Elections, and snould be carefully studied

It is considered that some of the restrictions imposed by the Municipal Elections Act,
1884, also apply to Parish Council Elections. Among such are the following : —


One Committee Room only is allowed to be hired by a Candidate. An additional
Committee Room may be hired if the number of electors is above 2,000.

The following premises may not be used by a Candidate as a Committee Room : —

Premises licensed for the sale of intoxicating liquor for consumption on or off the
' premises.

Premises where refreshments of any kind, whether food or drink, are ordinarily sold
for consumption on the premises.

Premises where any intoxicating liquor is supplied to the members of a Club, Society,
or Association.

The use of Public Elementary Schools as Committee Rooms is not in terms prohibited,
as at Parliamentary Elections, but it would be highly unwise that they should be used
for the purpose.


Two persons, but not more, may be employed for payment, either as Clerks or Mes-
sengers, when the number of Electors is below 2,000. One additional person is allowed
for every farther 1,000 electors, or part of that number, over 2,000.

Candidates who stand jointly are only allowed to hire the number of Committee Rooms
and to employ the number of paid Clerks or Messens^ers authorised for a single Candidate.

If there are only two Candidates, each may appoint one Polling Agent for each Polling
Station, who may be paid or unpaid.

If there are more than two Candidates, any number of them, being not leas than one-
third of the whole number of candidates, may appoint one Polling Agent for each Polling
Station, who may be paid or unpaid.

Unpaid Agents to attend the counting of votes on the Candidates' behalf may also be
appointed. Notice of the polling and counting Agents' names and addresses must be
given to the Retaming Officer not less than two clear days before the polling. Each
must make a declaration of secrecy before a magistrate or the Returning Officer.

Electors who are employed for payment may not vote.


The arrangements for meetings should be well considered beforehand, and the plans
for engaging rooms, announcing the meetings, selecting Chairman and Speakers, &c.,

All printed Bills, Notices of Meetings, &c., must bear the name and address of the
printer and publisher at foot.


If a personal Canvass of the parish is decided upon, voluntary canvassers must be
obtained in sufficient numbers.


When the list of nominations is closed, and a poll is certain to be held, the candidates
should send to each elector a card, entering thereon particulars of his register number,
and the time and place for the polling.


All payments for conveyance of voters being prohibited by law, reliance must be
placed upon such private vehicles as may be voluntarily lent for the purpose. No vehicle
or animiu which is usually let for hire may be used for the conveyance of voters to or
from the poll.

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The following pages contain a reaumi of the Proceedings in Parliament from
February 17th, lft)3, to August 14th, 1905.

The proceedings are collected under headings indicative of the subject-matters of dis-
cussion, with cross-references when necessary, so as to show the chronological course of
each Bill or question throughout the Session. They are, as far as possible, arranged in ^
alphabetical order, with the exception of debates " in Supply," which generally appear '
in order of date under that heading, unless the subject is noticed elsewhere, when
it is so stated. Matters relating exclusively to Scotland, Ireland, or Wales are inserted
under the headings of the respective countries.

The Summary deals only with such matters of public business as are of general
importance or mterest, and gives, as far as space permits, an outline of the leading
speeches and argpmentig in both Houses, including the principal business dealt with in
Standing Committees.

Business in the House of Lords is prefixed by the letter L, and in the House of Com-
mons by O. Government business is denoted by an asterisk.

The Third Session of the First Parliament of King Edward YII. was opened by His
Majesty in person, accompanied by the Queen, in full State, on Feb. 17.

L—*King'fl Speech.— His Majesty read the Speech from the Throne as follows:—

" My Loros and Gentlemen,

**My relations with all the foreign Powers continue to be friendly.

"The blockade of Venezuelan ports, rendered necessary by outrages on the British
flag a^d wrongs inflicted on the persons and property of British subects by the
Venezuelan Government, has led to negotiations for the adjustment of all matters in
dispute. I rejoice that a settlement has now been arrived at which has justified the
blockading Powers in bringing all hostile naval operations to an immediate close.
Papers on the subject have been laid before you.

"Negotiations have taken place for the adjustment of the questions which have
arisen with regard to the boundary between my possessions in North America and
the territory of Alaska. A Treaty providing for the reference of these questions to an
Arbitral Tribunal has been signed and ratified.

" The condition of the European provinces of Turkey gives cause for serious anxiety.
I have used my best efforts to impress upon the Sultan and his Ministers the urgent
need for practical and well-considered measures of reform. The Governments of
Austria-Hungary and Russia have had under their consideration what reforms it would
be desirable that the Powers who were parties to the Treaty of Berlin should recommend
to the Sultan for immediate adoption. I trust that the proposals made will prove to
be sufficient for the purpose, and that I shall find it possible tq give them my hearty
support. Papers on the subject will be laid before you.

"I regret that the efforts which my Government have been making to arrive at a
joint delimitation with the Turkish Government of the boundaries of tne tribal country,
adjoininp^ Aden have hitherto failed to bring about a settlement. Negotiations upon
this subject are being urgently pressed forward.

" A body of my troops, including a small corps of mounted infantry raised from the
inhabitants of the Transvaal and Orange Biver Colony, has been disembarked at
Obbia, in Italian Somaliland, to operate against the Mullah Abdullah, and an advance
inland is about to be made. The co-operation of the Italian Government in this under-
taking has been most cordial, and I trust that as a result of these operations, the
tribes of both Protectorates may be secured from further molestation.

"The progress of events in South Africa has been satisfactory. The visit of the
Secretary of State for the Colonies to that portion of my dominions has already been
productive of the happiest results; and the opportunity which it has provided for
personal conference with Lord Milner, with the Ministers of the self-governing Colonies,
and with the representatives of all interests and opinions, has greatly conduced to the
smooth adjustment of many difficult questions, and to the removal of many occasioni
of misunderstanding.

"It has been found necessary to send an expedition to Kano in consequenoe of the
hostile action of the Emir of that place. My troops have successfully occupied his
capital, and I trust that it will now become possible to proceed in safety with the
delimitation of the boundary between my territory of Northern Nip^eria and the adjoin-
ing possessions of the French Republic. Papers upon this subject will at once be

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L— ^King's Bp^eeh.— continued.

" My succession to the Imperial Crown of India has been proclaimed and celebrated
In an assembly of unexampled splendour at Delhi. I there received from the feudatory
Princes and Chiefs, and from all classes of the peoples within my Indian dominions,
gratifying marks of their loyalty and devotion to my Throne and family. I am glad
to be able to state that this imposing ceremony has coincided, in point of time, with
the disappearance of drought and agricultural distress in Western India, and that
the prospects both of agriculture and commerce throughout my Indian Empire are more
encouraging and satisfactory than they have been for some years past.

" Gentlemen of the House of Commons,

"The Estimates for the coming year will be laid before you. Although they have
been framed with due regard to economy, the needs of the country and of the Empire
make a large expenditure inevitable.

"My Lords and Gentlemen,
, "A Bill will be laid before you which will, I trust, complete the series of measures
wtiich have already done much to substitute single ownership for the costly and unsatis-
factory conditions still attaching to the tenure of agricultural land over a large portion
of Ireland.

"Proposals will be submitted to you for completing the scheme of educational
reform passed last Session by extending and adapting it to the Metropolitan area.

"Measures will be introduced for th^ purpose of carrying into effect engagements
arising out of the Convention for the Abolition of Bounties on Sugar which has recently
been ratified at Brussels ; and for guaranteeing a loan to be raised for the development
of my new Colonies in South Africa.

" A Bill will ,be laid before you for improving the administration of the Port and
Docks of London, the condition of which is a matter of national concern.

"A measure amending and consolidating the licensing laws in Scotland is greatly
desired in that country and I trust will pass into law.

"Measures will also be proposed to you for improving the law of valuation and
assessment; for regulating the employment of children; for dealing with the sale
of adulterated dairy produce: for amending the law relating to savings banks; and
for reconstituting the Royal Patriotic Fund Commission.

" ^ S£?y *^** *'^® guidance and blessing of Almighty God may direct all your labours."

L— The Address.— The Duke of Roxburghe (C.) moved, and the Earl of Leitrim (C.)
seconded, the Address in reply to His Majesty's Speech. — Earl Spencer (L.), Leader
of the Opposition, first referred to the question of Venezuela, and expressed a doubt
whether the joint action with Germany might not bring about disastrous results. The
Govt, ought to have published earlier the communications with Germany and the
United States as to the troubles in Macedonia. The French Govt, had published much
more information than our own Govt. He hoped the latter would support the Russian
and Austrian proposals to Turkey. He also asked for further information as to the
expedition in Somaliland. Referring to Mr. Chamberlain's visit to South Africa, he
admired the energy and ability of his endeavour to bring things to a happy conclusion.
The Grovt. proposals for the Session were exceedingly sanguine as to the Irish land
question, and he hoped that the two parties would have noticed with some satisfaction
what had occurred in Ireland during the last few months, and work together for a
common end. — The Duke of Devonshire (L.U.), Lord President, referred to the
Yenezuelan negotiations, which had resulted in the raising of the blockage; but certain
elements of risk and danger still existed, and he deprecated premature discussion
on the subject. Our co-operation with Germany had been for a definite object. It
was not an alliance, and it would not have been desirable that each nation should
have made its claims separately. As to Macedonia, the immediate dangers mainly
affected Russia and Austria, and it was for them to press the necessity of restoring
order. The operations in Somaliland were necessitated by the attack of the Mullah,
and were being undertaken for the express purpose of breaking his power and authority.
It was a matter which affected Imperial interests of the very highest importance.
With regard to the Irish Land Bill he hoped the fuller information the Govt, now
possessed would enable them to deal with the question favourably. As to the London
Education Bill, it would be dealt with on principles similar to those applied to the
rest of the country. — ^The Address was agreed to. Feb. 17.

C — The sessional order against the interference of Peers in elections having been
<!arried by 270 to 68, the Address in reply to the King's Speech was moved bv Mr. Gret-
ton (C), and seconded by Capt. Greville (C.)— Sir H. Campbell-Bannerman (L.), Leader
of the Opposition, first asked for information as to Venezuelan affairs, and repudiated
the doctrine that it was our duty to go to war in support of bondholders' claims. He
believed there was in the country nothing but a friendly feeling for Germany, but he
objected to the Govt, having bound us not to desist from action against Venezuela
except with Germany's approval. We ought to have gone to arbitration in the first
initance. Turning to Somaliland, he said our proceedings were haphazard, and might
result in serious difficulties. As to Macedonia, he hoped the remonstrance against the
state of affairs there would be effective. He approved of Mr. Chamberlain's mission to

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C— Address, Tlie— continued.
S. Africa and the conciliatory sentiments he had expressed. As bo the labour ques-
tion, we could not rid ourselves of our obligations towards the coloured races, and the
Liberals would never sanction compulsory labour, direct or indirect. He hoped the
Govt. Education Bill for London would not renew the controversies of last Session.
On the Irish land question he was glad to note the friendly co-operation of represen-
tatives of classes who had long been in antagonism. The Govt, had left out of their
programme important subjects like local taxation and the law of trade combinations.
The expenditure was growing, and the condition of the Army was nevertheless un-
satisfactory. Few people had any confidence in the army corps system. The nation
ought to be told what really were the military requirements of the Empire. — Mr.
Balfour, in reply, referred to the Brussels Sugar Convention, and asserted that it did
not interfere with the most-favoured-nation clause. Russia, he admitted, held a
different view, but in no circumstances would the Govt, consent to penalize colonial
sugar. As to the Transvaal, Mr. Chamberlain had consulted his colleagues before
coming to any important decisions, and they entirely endorsed his policy. Defending
the operations in Somaliland, he said it was impossible to allow the Mullah to raid
tribes under our protection. The expedition would put a stop to these inroads.
Turning to Venezuela, he justified the naval operations as necessary, in consequence
of insults to the flag and brutal assaults on British subjects. If separate action had
been taken Venezuela would have tried to play off one power against the other, and to
produce as much international friction as possible. The negotiations had been carried
on by us with great consideration not only for the feelings of the American Govt., but
also for those of Venezuela. — The debate was continued by other members, among sub^
jects discussed being the Commission on London traf&c, the state of Macedonia, and
the expedition to Kano in Nigeria. Feb. 17.

The discussion of specific amendments was then entered upon, for which see under
various headings, as follows: —
1. — Housing of the working classes. — Amendment by Dr. Macnamara (L.) in favour of
immediate legislation.—Negatived by 205 to 166: Feb. 18.

2. — China and Persia. — ^Amendment by Mr. J. Walton (L.) in favour of measures for
safe-guarding Imperial interests. — ^Withdrawn after debate. Feb. 18.

3. — Labour Question. — The Unemployed. — ^Amendment by Mr. K. Hardie (Soc.) con-
demning the omission of legislation for the acquisition of land upon whicli the
unemployed might be set to work. — ^Negatived bv 201 to 161. Feb. 19.

4. — London and Globe Finance Corporation. — ^Amenament by Mr. Lambert (L.) ex-
pressing regret that the Govt, had not prosecuted the directors of this Company.
—Negatived by 166 to 115. Feb. 19,

5. — Ministers and Directorships. — Amendment by Mr. McNeill (N.) declaring the
directorship of a public Company to be incompatible with the position of a
Minister of the Crown. —Negatived by 147 to 109. Feb. 20.

6. — Navi/. — ^Amendment by Sir W. Allan (L.) describing the state of the Navy as un-
satisfactory. — Withdrawn after debate. Feb. 20,
7. — Scotland. — Deer Forests. — ^Amendment by Mr. Weir (L.) against the extension of
deer forests in the Highland crofting counties. — ^Negatived by 158 to 98. Feb. 20.
8. — Army. — ^Amendment by Mr. Beckett (C.) condemning the new Army organisation
as unsuited to the needs of the Empire. — Rejected, after two days' debate, by
261 to 145. Feb. 24.
9. — Ireland. — Land Question. — Amendment by Mr. J. Redmond (N.) in favour of
legislation on the lines of the conference between landlords' and tenants' represen-
tatives.— Withdrawn after debate. Feb. 25.
10. — Agriculture. ^Cattle Disease. — ^Amendment by Mr. Price (L.) for admitting
Canadian store cattle to the United Kingdom.— ^Negatived by 190 to 38. Feb. 25.
11. — Alien Immigration. — Amendment by Sir H. Vincent (C.) calling attention to the
increase of alien immigration and the necessity for checking it. — ^Withdrawn
after debate. Feb. 26.
12. — India. — Finance. — ^Amendment by the late Mr. Caine (L.) in favour of the reduc-
tion of military expenditure in India.— Negatived. Feb. 26.
13. — Ireland. — Bailioays. — ^Amendment by Mr. O'Mara (N.) declaring the necessity for
a reform in administration. — ^Withdrawn. — ^Address agreed to. Feb. 26.

Online LibraryNational Unionist Association of Conservative andThe Constitutional year book → online text (page 46 of 77)