Journal of the House of Commons: Volume 11, 1693-1697. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1803.
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Martis, 14 die Januarii ;
Earl of Torrington's Grant in Bedford Level.
MR. Harley, according to Order, presented to the House a Bill for confirming a Grant, under the Great Seal of England, to Arthur Earl of Torrington, by King William and Queen Mary, of several Parcels of Land, Part of the Great Level of the Fens, called Bedford Level; and for the better enabling the said Earl to recover the Arrears of Rent, and mesne Profits thereof.
Wye and Lugg Navigation.
A Petition of the Bailiff, Burgesses, and other Inhabitants, of the Borough of Leominster, in the County of Hereford, was presented to the House, and read; setting forth, That though the said County abounds with many useful Commodities; yet they stand in need of a great many more, that might be had at much easier Charge than now they are, if a free Water-passage was had in the Rivers Wye and Lugg, which is now obstructed by several Mills and Weirs erected thereon: And praying, That all Obstructions may be removed for making the said Rivers navigable.
A Petition of the Mayor, Aldermen, Citizens, Freemen, and Inhabitants, of the City of Hereford, was presented to the House, and read; setting forth, That the Petitioners do most heartily concur with the County of Hereford, in their Request to the House, That an Act may pass for making the Rivers of Wye and Lugg, in the said County, navigable; being deeply sensible, that the same will be very advantageous to the Petitioners, who lie under very great Want of easy Carriage of all Sorts of Commodities of the Product of Herefordshire; whereby they are become mere Drugs in the Proprietors Hands: And also, by such a Navigation, the Price of Coals and Fuel, which now is very dear, will be reduced by One Half; and the Poor be thereby relieved; and the Roads much preserved, which are now almost unpassable: And praying the Removal of all Obstructions in the making the said Rivers of Wye and Lugg navigable.
A Petition of divers Parishes, Townships, Hamlets, and Places, within the County of Hereford, was presented to the House, and read; setting forth, That many useful Commodities, which the said County affords, are become a mere Drug, and not worth the Rearing, for want of cheap Carriage; so, on the other hand, the said County wants other Commodities, as Salt, Coals, and other things; all which Necessities may be remedied, by making the Rivers Wye and Lugg, in the County of Hereford, navi gable; which will not only be a great Advantage to the said County, but to the Kingdom in general: And praying, That an Act may pass, this Parliament, for removing all Obstructions that may hinder the Navigation of the said Rivers; the County being willing to make the Proprietors of the Mills and Weirs thereon what Satisfaction the House shall think reasonable.
Wye and Lugg Navigation.
A Petition of the Bailiff, High Steward, Recorder, Justices of the Peace, and all the capital Burgesses, of the Borough of Leominster, in the County of Hereford, . . . . . setting forth, That the County of Hereford produceth Abundance of useful Commodities, which might be communicated to other Parts of this Kingdom, to the Advantage of all in general, if there was a free Passage by Water in the Rivers Wye and Lugg; but, by reason of several Mills and Weirs upon the said Rivers, Commerce with their Neighbours is lost; and Land-carriage is so excessive dear, and none at all in the most useful Seasons of the Year, by reason of the Deepness of the Roads, that their Commodities are scarcely worth the Propagating: And praying the Removal of all Obstructions in making the Rivers of Wye and Lugg, in the County of Hereford, navigable.
Commissioners of Accounts.
Duty on Coals.
A Petition of the Mayor, Aldermen, and Citizens, of the City of Worcester, in Council assembled, was presented to the House, and read; setting forth, That the said City is very populous, and is served with Coals from the River Severne; and, by reason of the Cloathing-Trade many Hundreds of the poorer Sort inhabit there: That the late Dearness of Dread hath sufficiently shewn their Inclination to mutiny: And Fire is as necessary to comfort the Body: That notwithstanding the City did lay out 200 l. in Coals, to supply the Use of the Poor in the Winter at a low Rate; yet they ramble, and destroy the neighbouring Woods and Fences, which does occasion great Inconveniencies: And praying, That the Tax upon Coals may be totally taken away, or made easier to the Poor.
Ordered, That the Consideration of the said Petition be referred to the Committee appointed to consider of the Act, made the last Parliament, for granting to his Majesty certain Duties upon Glass Wares, Stone and Earthen Bottles, Coals, and Culm, for carrying on the War against France; and the Doubts and Complaints relating thereunto.
A Petition of the Feltmakers, Dyers, Smiths, and other poor Inhabitants, of the Town and Borough of Southwark, in the County of Surrey, was presented to the House, and read, setting forth, That the Difficulties under which they now labour, are, not only the Decay of Trade in general, but the Duty of 5s. per Chaldron laid on Coals by an Act of the last Parliament; which has raised Coals from 15s. a Chaldron in time of Peace, to above 35s. per Chaldron now; and there is little Likelihood of their being cheaper, unless the said Duty, which is very burdensome to the Petitioners, be taken off; which they hope the House will the rather do, because the said Tax falls chiefly on poor Artificers: And praying, That the House will find out some other more equal and general Way to raise Money, than by continuing the said Tax.
Ordered, That the Consideration of the said Petition be referred to the Committee appointed to consider of the Act, made the last Parliament, for granting to his Majesty certain Duties upon Glass Wares, Stone and Earthen Bottles, Coals, and Culm, for carrying on the War against France; and of the Doubts and Complaints relating thereunto.
A Member discharged from custody.
Supply Bill; Duties on Wines, &c.
A Bill for continuing several Duties, granted by former Acts, upon Wine and Vinegar, and upon Tobacco, and East-India Goods, and other Merchandizes, imported, for carrying on the War against France, was read a Second time.
Leave of Absence
Remedying ill State of the Coin.
A Petition of the Refiners of Sugar in the City of London, in behalf of themselves, and the rest of the Sugar refiners in England, was presented to the House, and read; setting forth, That the Sugar Manufacture in England employs great Numbers of People; and, heretosore great Quantities of white refined Sugar was exported to Spain, Italy, Turkey, and the East Country, and made a great Article in the Balance of Trade; but, by means of some Discouragement the said Trade lies under, it has been lost to this Nation for some Years past: And praying the Consideration of the House in the Premises.
Ordered, That the Consideration of the said Petition be referred to the Committee of the whole House; to whom the Bill for continuing several Duties, granted by former Acts, upon Wine and Vinegar, and upon Tobacco. and East-India Goods, and other Merchandizes, imported for carrying on the War against France, is committed.
Grant to Earl of Portland.
A Petition of Sir Thomas Grosvenor, Sir Richard Middleton, Sir John Conway, Baronets, Sir Robert Cotton, Sir William Williams, Knights and Baronets, Sir Roger Puleston Knight, Edward Vaughan, Edward Brereton, and Robert Price. Esquires, on behalf of themselves, and other the Freeholders and Inhabitants in the County of Denbigh, was presented to the House, and read; setting forth, That the Lordships and Manors of Denbigh, Bromfeild, and Yale, and divers other Manors, Castles, and Lands, comprised in an intended Grant from the Crown, to William Earl of Portland, and his Heirs, are of great Extent and Value, containing near Four Parts in Five of the County of Denbigh; and are, for the most part, the Principality and Revenue of the Princes of Wales; and are the most valuable and populous Part of the County: That the Petitioners being informed such Grant was passing, with all the Regalities and Royal Franchises, which were ever enjoyed over the Subject by the Kings of England, or Princes of Wales; and finding, that much of the ancient Inheritance of the Petitioners, and other Freeholders, which they have many Ages quietly enjoyed, was also included in the said Grant; they opposed the Passing thereof, at the Treasury, but in vain; the said Earl still proceeding to pass the same at the Privy-Seal; in manifest Prejudice to pass Right and Principality of the Princes of Wales, the Diminution of the Revenue of the Crown, and to the great Injury and Oppression of the Petitioners: And praying Leave to lay the Premises before the House, to be considered, prevented, or redressed, by such Methods as the House shall think fit.
Resolved, Nemine contradicente, That an humble Address be made to his Majesty, to stop the passing a Grant, to the Earl of Portland, of the Manors of Denbigh, Bromfeild, and Yale; and other Lands in the Principality of Wales; and that they may not be disposed from the Crown. but by Consent of Parliament.
And it is referred to Mr. Boyle, Sir William Williams, Sir Edw. Seymour, Sir Rich. Middleton, Mr. Price, Sir Henry Goff, Mr. Harley, Sir Robert Davers, Mr. Gwyn, Sir Herbert Crofts, Sir Chr. Musgrave, Sir Richard Temple, Mr. Bromley, Mr. Ash, Sir John Bolles, Mr. Foley, Colonel Granville, Mr. Brerton, Mr. St. Johns, Sir Geo. Hungerford, Mr. Sloane, Mr. Finch, Sir Fra. Winington, and all the Members for North Wales; or any Five of them: And they are to meet this Afternoon at Five a Clock, in the Speaker's Chambers.