List of commissions and officials: 1840-1849 (nos. 29-52)

Pages 28-41

Office-Holders in Modern Britain: Volume 9, Officials of Royal Commissions of Inquiry 1815-1870. Originally published by University of London, London, 1984.

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Four Commissioners were appointed in 1840 to inquire throughout the United Kingdom into the employment of the children of the poorer classes in mines and collieries, and in the various branches of trade and manufacture not included in the provisions of the acts for regulating the employment of children and young persons in mills and factories. They were instructed to collect information as to the ages at which they were employed, the number of hours they worked and as to the effect of their employment on their morals and bodily health. (fn. 1) To collect this information, the Home Secretary appointed between November 1840 and March 1841 twenty Sub-Commissioners, who were assigned to specific industrial areas. (fn. 2) The Commissioners reported on the employment of children in mines and collieries on 21 April 1842 ([380] HC (1842) xv) and on the employment of children in trade and manufacture on 30 January 1843 ([430] HC (1843) xiii). The reports of the SubCommissioners were published as appendices to the main reports ([381-2] HC (1842) xvi, xvii; [431-2] HC (1843) xiv, xv).

Two of the Commissioners, Tooke and Smith, were awarded allowances of £500 for their services. No allowances were awarded to Horner and Saunders, who were already in receipt of salaries as Inspectors of Factories. (fn. 3) The Sub-Commissioners were awarded allowances of £100 for their services in addition to their actual travelling expenses and a daily personal allowance of one guinea whilst travelling. (fn. 4) The Secretary, named in the commission, was awarded an allowance of £500. (fn. 5)

Commissioners 20 Oct. 1840 Tooke, T.; Smith, T. S.; Horner, L.; Saunders, R. J. (C 66/4609).

19 Nov. 1840 Mitchell, J. (HO 74/1 pp. 225-6).
19 Nov. 1840 Stewart, L. (ibid.).
19 Nov. 1840 Scriven, S. S. (ibid.).
19 Nov. 1840 Kennedy, J. L. (ibid.).
19 Nov. 1840 Grainger, R. D. (ibid.).
19 Nov. 1840 Symons, J. C. (ibid.).
7 Dec. 1840 Roper, F. (ibid.).
6 Jan. 1841 Tancred, T. (ibid. pp. 233-4).
9 Jan. 1841 Franks, R. H. (ibid. p. 236).
22 Jan. 1841 Austin, A. (ibid. p. 237).
22 Jan. 1841 Leifchild, J. R. (ibid. p. 238).
Jan. 1841 Wood, W. R. ([380] p. 2 HC (1842) xv, 14). (fn. 6)
12 Feb. 1841 Martin, T. (HO 74/1 p. 239).
12 Feb. 1841 Burns, J. G. (ibid.).
17 Feb. 1841 Horne, R. H. (ibid. p. 241).
20 Feb. 1841 Waring, E. (ibid. p. 242).
25 Feb. 1841 Fellows, J. M. (ibid. p. 243).
3 March 1841 Barham, C. (ibid. p. 244).
12 March 1841 Jones, R. W. (ibid. p. 248).
13 March 1841 Jones, H. H. (ibid. p. 249).
Secretary 20 Oct. 1840 Fletcher, J. (C 66/4609).


Five Commissioners were appointed in 1841 to inquire into the defaults of any official assignees of the court of bankruptcy and into the best means of preventing such defaults in future. (fn. 7) The number of Commissioners was reduced to four on the death of Cross in 1842. Three of the Commissioners, Rose, Ellis and Hawes completed a report, dated 20 June 1843, which was sent to the Home Secretary on 29 July 1843. The report was printed in the form of a House of Commons paper, but was not presented to the House. It was not sent to the Home Secretary by the commission's official Secretary, William Vizard, who at the time of his appointment was the Lord Chancellor's Secretary of Bankrupts, an office which he lost in September 1841, but by Richard Clarke, the new Lord Chancellor's Secretary of Bankrupts. (fn. 8) In 1846 the House of Commons sought information on the commission's progress and addressed its inquiry to Vizard, who replied that he had ceased to be Secretary to the commission at the time he ceased to be Secretary of Bankrupts. (fn. 9) There is no evidence that any remuneration was paid to the Commissioners or any officials.

Commissioners 15 May 1841 Cross, Sir J. (fn. 10); Rose, Sir G.; Ellis, W.; Crawford, W.; Hawes, B. (C 66/4629).

Secretary 15 May 1841 Vizard, W. (ibid.).


Thirteen Commissioners were appointed in 1842 to inquire into the most effectual means of improving the metropolis and of providing improved facilities of communication within it. One of the Commissioners, Humphery, was Lord Mayor of London at the time of his appointment, and provision was made that both he and the lord mayor for the time being should be represented on the commission. (fn. 11) Two additional Commissioners were appointed in 1846. (fn. 12) The chairmanship of the commission was held successively by Lincoln, Canning and Morpeth as holders of the office of First Commissioner of Woods and Forests. (fn. 13) The commission issued seven reports: 27 January 1844 (HC 15 (1844) xv); 7 May 1845 (HC 348 (1845) xvii, 1); 9 April 1845 ([619] HC (1845) xvii, 341); 23 April 1845 ([627] HC (1845) xvii, 439); 23 July 1845 ([682] HC (1846) xxiv, 321); 15 July 1847 ([861] HC (1847) xvi, 349); 7 August 1850 ([1356] HC (1851) xxix, 287). Hope did not sign the second, third and fourth reports; Canning and Barry did not sign the sixth report; and Lincoln did not sign the sixth and seventh reports.

The Commissioners were unsalaried. Their Secretary, named in the commission, was awarded a salary of £250. (fn. 14)

The lord mayors of London, who sat on the commission ex officio, are not included in the following list. (fn. 15)

Commissioners 23 Nov. 1842 Lincoln, Earl of; Lyttelton, Lord; Colborne, Lord; Herries, J. C.; Humphery, J.; Inglis, Sir R. H.; Lemon, Sir C.; Hope, H. T.; Gally Knight, H. (fn. 16); Milne, A.; Gore, Hon. C. A.; Smirke, Sir R. (fn. 17); Barry, C. (HO 38/42 pp. 241-7).

30 March 1846 Canning, Viscount (HO 38/46 pp. 276-8).

29 July 1846 Morpeth, Viscount (ibid. pp. 482-3).

Secretary 23 Nov. 1842 Philipps, T. W. (HO 38/42 pp. 241-7).

32. MIDLAND MINES 1842-3

A single Commissioner was appointed in 1842 to make a special inquiry into the condition of the persons employed in mines in Worcestershire, Warwickshire, Staffordshire and Shropshire; into their opportunities for obtaining religious instruction and school education; into the work they performed and the wages they received. (fn. 18) Commissioner Tancred reported on 30 May 1843 ([508] HC (1843) xiii).

Tancred was remunerated at the rate of £50 a month in addition to a personal expenses allowance of £1 a day and his actual travelling expenses. (fn. 19) He did not employ a secretary.

Commissioner 7 Dec. 1842 Tancred, T. (HO 38/42 pp. 269-72).

33. HEALTH OF TOWNS 1843-8

Thirteen Commissioners were appointed in 1843 to inquire into the state of large towns and populous districts in England and Wales with reference to the causes of disease among the inhabitants, and into the best means of promoting and securing public health. (fn. 20) The commission divided the country into six districts to be visited by one or more members of the commission and allotted miscellaneous towns not included within the districts to individual Commissioners. (fn. 21) The commission issued its first report on 27 June 1844 ([572] HC (1844) xvii) and its second report, to which were appended the district reports, on 3 February 1845 ([602, 610] HC (1845) xviii, 1, 299). There is no evidence that the Commissioners held any formal meetings after the signing of the second report, and in August 1845 the Home Secretary reported that their work was complete. The commission, however, was kept in being until April 1848 so that salaries could be paid to its Secretary and a clerk, who were seconded to the office of the First Commissioner of Woods and Forests, the government official with responsibility for the introduction of public health legislation. (fn. 22)

Of the Commissioners, Buccleuch, the Lord Privy Seal, Lincoln, the First Commissioner of Woods and Forests, Slaney, a former Member of Parliament, and Graham, the Registrar-General, were offered no remuneration. Cubitt, whose professional commitments had prevented his devoting many days to the work of the commission, declined to take any payment. The remaining eight Commissioners were remunerated at the rate of 3 guineas a day whilst actually employed on the business of the commission in London or in the country, and with the exception of Stephenson, were awarded an additional payment of 50 guineas for 'special services'. (fn. 23) The Secretary, named in the commission, received a salary of £600 payable until 1 April 1848. (fn. 24) Although not a Commissioner or an official, Edwin Chadwick, the Secretary of the Poor Law Commission, was active at all stages of the inquiry, and in December 1845 submitted a request for remuneration amounting to £1,575. As 'a public servant in the receipt of a salary' Chadwick was denied any remuneration, but was grudgingly allowed a sum of £180 for 'expenses out of pocket'. (fn. 25)

Commissioners 9 May 1843 Buccleuch, Duke of; Lincoln, Earl of; Slaney, R. A.; Graham, G.; de la Beche, Sir H. T.; Playfair, L.; Reid, D. B.; Owen, R.; Denison, W. T.; Martin, J. R.; Smith, J.; Stephenson, R.; Cubitt, W. (C 66/4686).

Secretary 9 May 1843 Hobhouse, H. (ibid.).


Three Commissioners were appointed in 1843 to inquire into the state of the laws as administered in South Wales which regulated the maintenance and repair of turnpike roads, highways and bridges and also into the circumstances which had led to the recent acts of violence in certain districts (i.e. the 'Rebecca Riots'). (fn. 26) The Commissioners pursued inquiries in South Wales 25 Oct. - 13 Dec. 1843 and reported on 6 March 1844 ([531] HC (1844) xvi, 77).

The Commissioners were allowed no salaries but received an allowance of two guineas a day each for personal expenses whilst in South Wales in addition to their actual travelling expenses. (fn. 27) The Secretary, named in the commission, received an allowance of five guineas a day for salary and personal expenses whilst in South Wales, and a sum of £100 for his services in London. (fn. 28)

Commissioners 11 Oct. 1843 Lewis, T. F.; Clive, Hon. R. H.; Cripps, W. (C 66/4696).

Secretary 11 Oct. 1843 Rickards, G. K. (ibid.).


In response to representations that where persons were employed in framework knitting, the truck system prevailed, a single Commissioner was appointed in 1844 to inquire into the manner in which the wages of the persons engaged in that trade in the counties of Leicester, Nottingham and Derby were paid and generally into the condition of the framework knitters in those counties. (fn. 29) Commissioner Muggridge reported on 20 February 1845 ([609, 618, 641] HC (1845) xv, 1, 151, 665).

Muggeridge was remunerated at the rate of £50 a month in addition to a personal expenses allowance of £1 a day and his actual travelling expenses. (fn. 30) He did not employ a secretary.

Commissioner 5 Feb. 1844 Muggeridge, R. M. (HO 38/43 pp. 492-5).


Two Commissioners were appointed in 1844 to investigate the causes of the collpase of a cotton mill belonging to Messsrs. Radcliffe at Oldham and of the partial collapse of the prison at Northleach, Gloucestershire. (fn. 31) They reported on 28 February 1845 ([628] HC (1845) xvi, 539).

The Commissioners were unsalaried, but were awarded expenses of some £45 each. (fn. 32) They did not employ a secretary.

Commissioners 28 Nov. 1844 de la Beche, Sir H. T.; Cubitt, T. (HO 38/45 pp. 1-4).


Nine Commissioners were appointed in February 1845 to inquire into the state and condition of the tidal harbours, shores and navigable rivers of the United Kingdom and as to the powers of the Admiralty with respect to their conservation. Three of the nine were ex officio members: the holders of the offices of Admiralty Hydrographer, Astronomer Royal and Admiralty Counsel. (fn. 33) In April 1845 Lowry Corry was succeeded as chairman by Bowles and an additional Commissioner was appointed. (fn. 34) The Commissioners issued a preliminary report on 8 July 1845 ([665] HC (1845) xvi, 269) and a second report on 20 March 1846 ([692] HC (1846) xviii). Seventeen reports on English and Irish harbours were printed with the second report. Reports on the harbours of Scotland were not presented to the House until 1847 ([874] HC (1847) xxxii).

The Commissioners were unsalaried. They were not empowered to appoint a Secretary. (fn. 35)

In the following list, ex officio members are omitted. (fn. 36)

Commissioners 1 Feb. 1845 Lowry Corry, Hon. H. T. (fn. 37); Hume, J.; Chapman, A.; Rice, E. R.; Baring, T.; Washington, J. (C 66/4734).

4 April 1845 Bowles, W. vice Lowry Corry; Bremer, Sir J.J. G. (C 66/4739).


As the circuits of the judges in England and Wales were very unequal, ten Commissioners were appointed in February 1845 to inquire whether it would be expedient to make any alteration in the division of the country into circuits and in the times for holding circuits. (fn. 38) They reported on 3 June 1845 ([638] HC (1845) xiv, 535). Heathcote did not sign the report.

The Commissioners and their Secretary, appointed by the Commissioners, served without remuneration.

Commissioners 14 Feb. 1845 Parke, Sir J.; Alderson, Sir E. H.; Coleridge, Sir J. T.; Stuart Wortley, Hon. J. A.; Kelly, F.; Whateley, W.; Greenwood, J.; Heathcote, Sir W.; Denison, E.; Bucknall Estcourt, T. G. (HO 38/45 pp. 140-6).

Secretary by 9 May 1845 Bayley, W. P. ([638] p. 9 HC (1845) xiv, 543).

39. RAILWAY GAUGE 1845-6

Three Commissioners were appointed in 1845 to inquire whether, in future private acts of parliament for the construction of railways, provision ought to be made for securing a uniform gauge; and whether it would be practicable to take measures to bring the railways already constructed in Great Britain into uniformity of gauge. (fn. 39) Their undated report ([684, 699, 700] HC (1846) xvi, 1, 29, 383) was presented to the House of Commons on 17 February 1846. (fn. 40)

The Commissioners were unsalaried. Their Secretary, appointed by the Commissioners, was awarded an allowance of one guinea a day. (fn. 41)

Commissioners 11 July 1845 Smith, Sir J. M. F.; Airy, G. B.; Barlow, P. (C 66/4750).

Secretary by 21 July 1845 Watson, W. (HO 36/28 pp. 180-1).


Five Commissioners were appointed in April 1846 to investigate the various railway projects, the termini of which were proposed to be established within, or in the immediate vicinity of the metropolis. (fn. 42) They reported on 27 June 1846 ([719, 750-I and II] HC (1846) xvii, 1, 25, 399).

The Commissioners were unsalaried. Their Secretary, appointed by the Commissioners, was awarded an allowance of one guinea a day. (fn. 43)

Commissioners 2 April 1846 Canning, Viscount; Dalhousie, Earl of; Johnson, J.; Herries, J. C.; Smith, Sir J. M. F. (C 66/4776).

Secretary by 9 April 1846 Watson, W. ([750-1] p. 250 HC (1846) xvii, 278).


Three Commissioners were appointed in 1846 to inquire into the management of Millbank Prison and into certain allegations made in two petitions to the House of Commons by Edward Baker, a former warder of the prison. (fn. 44) Their report, dated 8 January 1847 ([760] HC (1847) xxx, 1) was signed by only two of the Commissioners. The third, Escott, produced a separate minority report dated 1 February 1847, but as it was not submitted with the majority report, the Home Secretary refused to present it to the Queen. It was, however, later laid before the House of Commons. (fn. 45)

The Commissioners were unsalaried. They employed only a clerk to assist them. (fn. 46)

Commissioners 17 Aug. 1846 Chichester, Earl of; Seymour, Lord; Escott, B. S. (C 66/4789).


Fourteen Commissioners were appointed in 1847, in view of the intention to create a bishopric of Manchester and three other new bishoprics, to consider the state of the bishoprics in England and Wales. (fn. 47) They quickly produced a first report, dated 20 April 1847, concerned only with the sees of St. Asaph and Bangor and the proposed new diocese of Manchester (HC 324 (1847) xxxiii, 115). They then went on to consider the sees of Norwich, Ely, Peterborough, London, Rochester and Canterbury and the proposed new dioceses of St. Albans, Southwell and Cornwall. (fn. 48) On 7 July 1847 the Secretary forwarded to Lord John Russell, who with the Archbishop of Canterbury shared the leadership of the commission, a draft second report, commenting that there was now no reason why it should not be ingrossed and signed. However, it appears never to have been signed and was certainly not made public. (fn. 49) On 2 August the Secretary issued a circular stating that meetings of the commission were suspended for the present. (fn. 50) There is no evidence in the surviving minute book of any formal meeting later than 2 July 1847.

The Commissioners were unsalaried. Their Secretary, Murray, who was named in the commission, was also Secretary to the Ecclesiastical Commission, and was presumably expected to serve as Secretary to the New Bishoprics Commission without salary. In 1849 he was forced to resign from his post as Secretary to the Ecclesiastical Commission because he had diverted the Commission's funds to his own use. (fn. 51) William Good, one of his former officials at the Ecclesiastical Commission, then submitted to the Home Secretary a statement concerning the affairs of the New Bishoprics Commission which he claimed was still in existence 'although all business has been suspended since March 1848'. He also claimed that he and seven other officials of the Ecclesiastical Commission had been employed in the service of the New Bishoprics Commission. Good and the other officials were unsuccessful in their claims for remuneration, although they may have received small payments from two sums of £350 paid to Murray in August and December 1847 to meet the expenses of the New Bishoprics Commission. (fn. 52)

Commissioners 10 Feb. 1847 Canterbury, Archbishop of; Cottenham, Lord; York, Archbishop of; Lansdowne, Marquess of; Chichester, Earl of; Powis, Earl of; Russell, Lord J.; London, Bishop of; Durham, Bishop of; Winchester, Bishop of; Lincoln, Bishop of; Chester, Bishop of; Grey, Sir G.; Wood, Sir C. (C 66/4804).

Secretary 10 Feb. 1847 Murray, C. K. (ibid.).


Seven Commissioners were appointed in 1847 to inquire whether the burdens on land could be diminished by the establishment of an effective system for the registration of deeds and the simplification of the forms of conveyance, and by what means this could be effected. (fn. 53) Their first report on the registration of deeds was received in chancery on 1 July 1850 ([1261] HC (1850) xxxii). It was not signed by Humphry and Broderip, who submitted a supplementary paper to the report expressing their differences of opinion. (fn. 54) Although the first report concluded with the promise to report speedily on the simplification of the forms of conveyance, no second report was ever produced. It is not clear who took over the chairmanship on the death of Langdale in 1851. The commission was formally closed on 7 February 1854 following the appointment of a commission on the registration of title. (fn. 55)

The Commissioners were unsalaried. Their Secretary, named in the commission, was awarded in August 1851 an allowance of £1,200 for his services up to that time, and in May 1854 a further sum of £350 for his work after August 1851. (fn. 56)

Commissioners 18 Feb. 1847 Langdale, Lord (fn. 57); Beaumont, Lord; Humphry, J.; Ker, C. H. B.; Coulson, W.; Frere, G.; Broderip, F. (C 66/4805).

Secretary 18 Feb. 1847 Sanders, G. W. (ibid.).


Five Commissioners were appointed in 1847 to inquire into the condition, prospects and management of the Merchant Seamen's Fund regulated by statutes 20 Geo. II c.38 and 5 & 6 William IV c.19. (fn. 58) Their undated report ([931] HC (1847-8) xxviii, 439) was presented to the House of Commons on 19 April 1848. (fn. 59)

The Commissioners were unsalaried. Their Secretary, named in the commission, who was already in receipt of a salary as Précis Writer to the Board of Trade, (fn. 60) was also unsalaried.

Commissioners 5 June 1847 Ellenborough, Earl of; Codrington, Sir E.; Clay, Sir W.; Loch,J.; Enderby, C. (C 66/4814).

Secretary 5 June 1847 de Lousada, F. (ibid.).

45. BRITISH MUSEUM 1847-50

Eleven Commissioners were appointed in 1847 to inquire into the constitution and government of the British Museum, into the administration of its funds, and into the condition of its several departments with the view of ascertaining in what way it could be made more effective for the advancement of literature, science and the arts. (fn. 61) The number of Commissioners was increased to fourteen in 1848, (fn. 62) and fell to thirteen on the death of the Bishop of Norwich in 1849. The commission issued its report on 28 March 1850 ([1170] HC (1850) xxiv). (fn. 63) It was not signed by Langdale. (fn. 64)

The Commissioners were unsalaried. Their Secretary, appointed by the Commissioners, was awarded a salary of £300. (fn. 65)

Commissioners 17 June 1847 Ellesmere, Earl of; Norwich, Bishop of (fn. 66); Langdale, Lord; Wrottesley, Lord; Grey Egerton, Sir P. de M.; Lemon, Sir C.; Murchison, Sir R. I.; Rutherfurd, A.; Hume, J.; Rogers, S.; Milnes, R. M. (C 66/4815).

4 May 1848 Seymour, Lord; Canning, Viscount; Shaw Lefevre, J. G. (C 66/4840).

Secretary by 1 July 1847 Collier, J. P. (HO 74/2 p. 61).

46. MARRIAGE LAWS 1847-50

Six Commissioners were appointed in 1847 to inquire into the state and operation of the laws of marriage as relating to the prohibited degrees of affinity and to marriages solemnised abroad or in the British colonies. (fn. 67) The number of Commissioners fell to five on the death of Blake in January 1849 and was increased to seven in February 1849. (fn. 68) Their first undated report ([973] HC (1847-8) xxviii, 233) was presented to the House of Commons on 3 July 1848. (fn. 69) Their second report, concerning East Indian marriages, was dated 18 April 1850 ([1203] HC (1850) xx, 363). It was not signed by the Bishop of Lichfield or Williams.

The Commissioners were unsalaried. The commission's two Secretaries, both of whom were appointed by warrant under the royal sign manual, also served without salary.

Commissioners 28 June 1847 Lichfield, Bishop of; Stuart Wortley, Hon. J. A.; Lushington, S.; Blake, A. R. (fn. 70); Williams, Sir E. V.; Rutherfurd, A. (HO 38/47 pp. 409-13).

19 Feb. 1849 Arundel and Surrey, Earl of; Ryan, Sir E. (HO 38/49 pp. 84-6). Secretary 28 June 1847 Merivale, H. (fn. 71) (HO 38/47 pp. 409-13).

10 Nov. 1847 Haggard, J. vice Merivale (HO 38/48 pp. 69-71).


Six Commissioners were appointed in 1847 to inquire into the conditions to be observed by engineers in the application of iron in structures exposed to violent concussions and vibration and to illustrate by theory and experiment the action which took place under varying conditions in iron railway bridges. (fn. 72) They reported on 26 July 1849 ([1123] HC (1849) xxix).

The Commissioners and their Secretary, named in the commission, received no remuneration.

Commissioners27 Aug. 1847 Wrottesley, Lord; Willis, R.; James, H.; Rennie, G.; Cubitt, W.; Hodgkinson, E. (HO 38/47 pp. 513-18).

Secretary27 Aug. 1847 Galton, D. S. (ibid.).


Five Commissioners were appointed in 1847 to. inquire whether any and what special means might be requisite for the improvement of the health of the metropolis. (fn. 73) The commission issued three reports, dated 19 November 1847 ([888, 895] HC (1847-8) xxxii, 1, 57); 19 February 1848 ([911, 921] HC (1847-8) xxxii, 0. 253, 293); and 13 July 1848 ([979] HC (1847-8) xxxii, 339). The formation in October 1848 of the General Board of Health, to which many of the commission's officials were appointed, effectively concluded its labours, although the commission was not formally closed until 22 January 1850. (fn. 74)

Of the Commissioners, Grosvenor and Jones received no remuneration; Smith and Owen were awarded allowances of £300 and £200 respectively; and Chadwick was awarded the salary of £1,200 which he had previously received as Secretary to the Poor Law Commission. (fn. 75) Their Secretary, Austin, named in the commission, was awarded an allowance of £200. (fn. 76) As Austin was much occupied as a civil engineer, an Assistant Secretary, with a salary of £200, was also employed. (fn. 77)

Commissioners 24 Sept. 1847 Grosvenor, Lord R.; Chadwick, E.; Smith, T. S.; Owen, R.; Jones, R. L. (C 66/4823).

Secretary 24 Sept. 1847 Austin, H. (ibid.).

Assistant Secretary Dec. 1847 Bain, A. (A. Bain, Autobiography (1904), 197).


Six Commissioners were appointed in 1849 to inquire into the system of leasing and managing the real property of the church, belonging to the archbishops and bishops and to the cathedrals and collegiate churches and also that vested in the Ecclesiastical Commissioners. They were authorised to consider how the property could be made most conducive to the spiritual welfare of the people and how fixed instead of fluctuating incomes could be made available to archbishops, bishops and the officers of cathedrals and collegiate churches. (fn. 78) They issued two reports: the first, dated 31 January 1850, on the management of farms and lands ([1135, 1175] HC (1850) xx, 35, 45); and the second, dated 30 July 1850, on the management of manorial lands, house property and mines ([1263] HC (1850) xx, 353). The commission remained in existence until the passing of the Episcopal and Capitular Estates Management Act (14 & 15 Vict. c.104) in 1851. (fn. 79)

The Commissioners and their Secretary, appointed by the Commissioners, received no remuneration. (fn. 80)

Commissioners 8 Jan. 1849 Harrowby, Earl of; Lyall, W. R.; Wood, W. P.; Armstrong, R. B.; Shaw Lefevre, J. G.; Jones, R. (HO 38/49 pp. 34-9).

Secretary Johnson, J. J. (fn. 81)


Seventeen Commissioners were appointed in 1849 to inquire into the practicability and mode of subdividing into distinct and independent parishes for ecclesiastical purposes, all the densely peopled parishes in England and Wales in such manner that the population of each should not exceed four thousand souls. (fn. 82) The number of Commissioners fell to sixteen on the death of Raikes. The Commissioners issued three reports: 27 July 1849 (HC 582 (1849) xxii, 119); 3 May 1850 ([1224] HC (1850) xx, 29); and 14 March 1855, on the proposed removal of some of the churches in the City of London ([1922] HC (1854-5) xv, 877). (fn. 83) The third report was not signed by Hook, Cotton or Jelf. The commission was formally closed in February 1856. (fn. 84)

The Commissioners were unsalaried. Their Secretary, named in the commission, was awarded a salary of £800. (fn. 85)

Commissioners 4 April 1849 York, Archbishop of; Harrowby, Earl of; London, Bishop of; Lichfield, Bishop of; Ashley, Lord; Herbert, Hon. S.; Buxton, Sir E. N.; Raikes, H. (fn. 86); Sinclair, J.; Hook, W. F.; Dale, T.; Cotton, W.; Champneys, W. W.; Murray, C. K. (fn. 87); Woodrooffe, W.; Haslegrave, J.; Seeley, R. B. (HO 38/49 pp. 163-8).

3 Dec. 1849 Jelf, G. vice Murray (ibid. pp. 445-50).

Secretary 4 April 1849 Kingscote, H. (ibid. pp. 163-8).

51. CHARITIES 1849-51

Nine Commissioners were appointed in 1849 to inquire into those cases which had been investigated by the commission appointed in 1818 to inquire into charities (5), but had not been certified to the Attorney General. (fn. 88) They issued two reports dated 25 June 1850 ([1242] HC (1850) xx, 15) and 29 May 1851 ([1373] HC (1851) xxii, 303).

The Commissioners and their Secretary, whose appointment was in their gift, were unsalaried.

Commissioners 18 Sept. 1849 Chichester, Earl of; Ducie, Earl of; Vane, Lord H.; Wharncliffe, Lord; Peel, F.; Sotheron, T. H. S.; Blunt, J. E.; Hill, J.; Kingscote, H. (HO 38/49 pp. 389-94).

Secretary Fearon, J. P. (fn. 89)

52. SMITHFIELD 1849-50

Seven Commissioners were appointed in 1849 to consider whether any means could be adopted for carrying into effect the recommendations of a select committee of the House of Commons appointed in 1849 to report upon Smithfield Market; and also to inquire into the state and management of all markets for the sale of meat in the City of London. (fn. 90) The report dated 24 May 1850 ([1217] HC (1850) xxxi, 355) was signed by all but two of the Commissioners, Duke and Wood, who submitted a minority report. (fn. 91)

The Commissioners were unsalaried. Their Secretary, appointed by the Commissioners, was awarded an allowance of £200 for his services. (fn. 92)

Commissioners 23 Nov. 1849 Lewis, G. C.; Duke, Sir J.; Verney, Sir H.; Miles, W.; Owen, R.; Byng, Hon. F. G.; Wood, J. (HO 38/49 pp. 435-8).

Secretary by 5 Dec. 1849 Redgrave, S. ([1217] p. 137 HC (1850) xxxi, 519).


  • 1. LPGS 20 Oct. 1840 (C 66/4609). By letter of 11 Feb. 1841 the Home Secretary ordered the Commissioners to include within the inquiry 'young persons' designated as such by the provisions of the factory acts ([380] p. iv HC (1842) xv, 4).
  • 2. Mitchell to South Staffordshire, Shropshire, Warwickshire, Leicestershire and South Durham; Stewart to Dorset, Devon, Somerset and Norwich; Scriven to North Staffordshire, Worcestershire and West Riding; Kennedy to South East Lancashire and North Cheshire; Grainger to Birmingham, Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire, Leicestershire and London; Symons to West Riding and Cumberland; Roper to South Ireland; Tancred to West Scotland; Franks to East Scotland and South Wales; Austin to West and North Lancashire; Leifchild to North Durham and Northumberland; Wood to Bradford and Leeds; Martin to North Ireland and Cumberland; Burns to South East England; Home to South Staffordshire; Waring to Forest of Dean and South Gloucestershire; Fellows to Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire; Barham to Devon and Cornwall; R. W. Jones to South Wales; H. H. Jones to North Wales. Inquiries were also made by the Secretary, Fletcher, in Lancashire, Scotland and South England.
  • 3. HO 36/26 pp. 80-1; T 13/1 p. 305.
  • 4. HO 74/1 pp. 225-6; HO 36/26 pp. 453-4; T 13/1 p. 394. Wood did not claim the allowance as poor health prevented his completing his inquiries (HO 36/26 p. 461). R. W. Jones, whose work was slow, was allowed only £50 (HO 74/1 pp. 302-3, 308-9; T 13/1 p. 399).
  • 5. HO 36/26 pp. 80-1; T 13/1 p. 305.
  • 6. Letter of appointment not traced.
  • 7. LPGS 15 May 1841 (C 66/4629).
  • 8. A copy of the report is to be found in HO 45/463. The file contains no information as to why the report was not presented to the House.
  • 9. HC 187 p. 9 (1846) xxv, 307.
  • 10. D. 5 Nov. 1842.
  • 11. WRSM 23 Nov. 1842 (HO 38/42 pp. 241-7).
  • 12. WRSM 30 March, 29 July 1846 (HO 38/46 pp. 276-8, 482-3).
  • 13. [1356] p. 9 HC (1851) xxix, 295; [861] p. 3 HC (1847) xvi, 351.
  • 14. HO 74/2 p. 57.
  • 15. Only two, Sir George Carroll (the sixth) and Thomas Farncomb (the seventh) signed reports.
  • 16. D. 9 Feb. 1846.
  • 17. Res. by 14 June 1848 (HC 669 p. 6 (1847-8) xxxix, 300).
  • 18. WRSM 7 Dec. 1842 (HO 38/42 pp. 269-72).
  • 19. HO 36/27 p. 16; T 13/1 p. 416.
  • 20. LPGS 9 May 1843 (C 66/4686). The commission's minutes are preserved in the PRO (MH 7/1). On its work see Finer, Chadwick, 231-7; R. A. Lewis, Edwin Chadwick and the public health movement 1832-1854 (1952), 83-105.
  • 21. North East district: Reid; Yorkshire: Smith; Lancashire: Playfair; North Midlands: Lincoln and Martin; Midlands: Slaney; Wales: de la Beche (MH 7/1 pp. 42-8; HO 45/416/1). Lincoln does not appear to have played any part in the North Midlands inquiry. Reports on Bristol and Bath were prepared by de la Beche; on Portsmouth and Norwich by Martin; on Lancaster by Owen; and on Woolwich and Salisbury by Denison.
  • 22. HO 36/28 pp. 199-200, 369-70; HO 36/29 pp. 76-7, 227; T 13/2 pp. 167, 234, 312-13.
  • 23. HO 36/27 pp. 449-50; HO 36/28 pp. 204-6; T 13/2 p. 89; T 1/4951/13247; T 1/5116/23993. Playfair was paid for 160 days; Martin for 112; Reid for 106; Smith for 86; de la Beche for 71; Owen for 65; Denison for 35; and Stephenson for 8.
  • 24. HO 36/27 pp. 449-50; HO 36/29 pp. 76-7; T 13/2 pp. 89, 312-13.
  • 25. HO 74/2 pp. 21-4.
  • 26. LPGS 11 Oct. 1843 (C 66/4696). On the work of the commission, see D. Williams, The Rebecca Riots. A study in agrarian discontent (Cardiff 1955), 274-81.
  • 27. HO 74/1 pp. 344-5. Clive did not claim the personal allowance (HC 187 p. 12 (1846) xxv, 310).
  • 28. HO 74/1 pp. 344-5. 363.
  • 29. WRSM 5 Feb. 1844 (HO 38/43 pp. 492-5).
  • 30. HO 74/1 pp. 361-2. His salary was paid until 30 June 1845 (HO 74/2 p. 12).
  • 31. WRSM 28 Nov. 1844 (HO 38/45 pp. 1-4). The use of iron in both buildings was the principal subject of inquiry. Cf. 47.
  • 32. HO 45/792B.
  • 33. LPGs 1 Feb. 1845 (C 66/4734).
  • 34. LPGS 4 April 1845 (C 66/4739).
  • 35. Cockburn Curtis, a civil engineer, was serving as Acting Secretary early in 1846 (HC 187 p. 19(1846) xxv, 317).
  • 36. F. Beaufort, the Admiralty Hydrographer, G. B. Airy, the Astronomer Royal, and R. Godson, the Admiralty Counsel, signed both reports.
  • 37. Lowry Corry, a Civil Lord of the Admiralty at the time of his appointment, was appointed First Secretary of the Admiralty on 13 February 1845 (Admiralty Officials, 138). He was succeeded as chairman of the commission, by Bowles, the Third Naval Lord of the Admiralty.
  • 38. WRSM 14 Feb. 1845 (HO 38/45 pp. 140-6). In response to a letter from the commission, the Home Secretary instructed it not to inquire as to the expediency of increasing the number of judges ([638] p. 9 HC (1845) xiv, 543).
  • 39. LPGS 11 July 1845 (C 66/4750).
  • 40. CJ ci, 159.
  • 41. HO 36/28 pp. 180-1; T 13/2 p. 155.
  • 42. LPGS 2 April 1846 (C 66/4776). On 8 April the Home Secretary, on behalf of the Queen, informed the Commissioners that they should direct their special attention to the problem of whether the extension of railways into the centre of the metropolis was calculated to afford such additional convenience or benefit to the public as would compensate for the sacrifice of property, the interruption of important thoroughfares and interference with other suggested plans of improvement (HO 74/2 pp. 30-1). On the work of the commission, see S. R. Hoyle, 'The first battle for London: a case study of the Royal Commission on Metropolitan Termini', London Journal, viii (1982), 140-55.
  • 43. T 58/8 pp. 95, 237.
  • 44. LPGS 17 Aug. 1846 (C 66/4789).
  • 45. HO 74/2 pp. 53-4; HC 62 pp. 7-9 (1847) xlvii, 609-11.
  • 46. HO 36/28 pp. 382-3.
  • 47. LPGS 10 Feb. 1847 (C 66/4804). The papers of the commission which include a minute book are preserved in the PRO (HO 73/70).
  • 48. HO 73/70, minutes of 20 April and 22 May 1847.
  • 49. A printed draft second report as resolved to be amended 14 June 1847 can be found at HO 73/70. Further amendments were made at meetings of 25 June and 2 July.
  • 50. HO 73/70.
  • 51. On Murray's resignation, see G. F. A. Best, Temporal Pillars (Cambridge 1964), 389-92.
  • 52. HO 45/2895; HO 74/2 pp. 73-5, 143-4, 167-8.
  • 53. LPGS 18 Feb. 1847 (C 66/4805).
  • 54. [1261] pp. 39-41 HC (1850) xxxii, 41-3.
  • 55. HO 74/2 p. 308.
  • 56. HO 74/2 pp. 191-2, 309; T 1/5863B/7563.
  • 57. D. 18 April 1851.
  • 58. LPGS 5 June 1847 (C 66/4814).
  • 59. CJ ciii, 459.
  • 60. Officials of the Boards of Trade, 94.
  • 61. LPGS 17 June 1847 (C 66/4815). On the work of the commission, see E. Miller, That noble cabinet. A history of the British Museum (1973), 172-83.
  • 62. LPGS 4 May 1848 (C 66/4840).
  • 63. 23 documentary appendices were not printed for the House of Commons. Some copies, however, were printed and preserved (HO 74/2 p. 100). One can be found in the British Library at BP 8/27.
  • 64. On Langdale's work as a Commissioner and on his disagreements with his colleagues, see T. D. Hardy, Memoirs of Henry Lord Langdale (2 vols. 1852), ii, 194-211.
  • 65. T 58/8 p. 422.
  • 66. D. 6 Sept. 1849.
  • 67. WRSM 28 June 1847 (HO 38/47 pp. 409-13).
  • 68. WRSM 19 Feb. 1849 (HO 38/49 pp. 84-6).
  • 69. CJ ciii, 677.
  • 70. D. 10 Jan. 1849 (Gent. Mag. (1849) n.s. xxi (i), 216).
  • 71. Res. by 10 Nov. 1847 following appointment as Assistant Under Secretary, Colonial Office (HO 38/ 48 pp. 69-71; [973] p. iv HC (1847-8) xxviii, 236).
  • 72. WRSM 27 Aug. 1847 (HO 38/47 pp. 513-18). The immediate cause of the inquiry was the collapse of the railway bridge over the river Dee. For a similar inquiry into the use of iron, see 36.
  • 73. LPGS 24 Sept. 1847 (C 66/4823). On the work of the commission, see Finer, Chadwick, 291, 314- 31, 391; R. A. Lewis, Edwin Chadwick and the public health movement 1832-54 (1952), 149-57.
  • 74. HO 74/2 pp. 145-7.
  • 75. HO 74/2 p. 66; HO 36/29 p. 101; T 13/2 p. 327.
  • 76. ibid.
  • 77. A. Bain, Autobiography (1904), 197; HC 720 p. 6 (1850) xxxiii, 270.
  • 78. WRSM 8 Jan. 1849 (HO 38/49 pp. 34-9).
  • 79. HO 74/2 pp. 184-5; HC 415 p. 7 (1856) xxxviii, 401.
  • 80. HC 720 p. 9 (1850) xxxiii, 273.
  • 81. Date of appointment not traced.
  • 82. WRSM 4 April 1849 (HO 38/49 pp. 163-8).
  • 83. The minutes of evidence taken by the Commissioners are to be found at HC (0.4) 1854 lxix, 313.
  • 84. HO 36/32 p. 19.
  • 85. HO 74/2 p. 118.
  • 86. D. 28 Nov. 1854.
  • 87. Res. 3 Nov. 1849 (HO 74/2 p. 140).
  • 88. WRSM 18 Sept. 1849 (HO 38/49 pp. 389-94).
  • 89. Date of appointment not traced.
  • 90. WRSM 23 Nov. 1849 (HO 38/49 pp. 435-8).
  • 91. [1217] pp. 24-7 HC (1850) xxxi, 378-81.
  • 92. HO 36/30 p. 84.