Mr W Fowler MP to [unknown man]

Scope and Content

Written from 30 Lombard St, London EC. Saying 'It is my intention to bring in a Bill as soon as possible, being tired of Mr Bruce's delays'

Administrative / Biographical History

'being tired of Mr Bruce's delays' - The Report of the Royal Commission to enquire into the workings of the CD Acts was published 7 Jul 1871. Then everyone waited to see what action the Govt would take to implement the Report. This was announced on 6 Feb (1872) and he introduced the Bill commonly known as Bruce's Bill on 13 Feb 1872. The Bill pleased nobody and it was finally withdrawn 15 Jul. (See 'Shield' 9 Aug p 1033). After the withdrawal of Bruce's Bill the cause of Repeal was a low ebb in Parliament. When in Fower's absence through illness, Mr Charles Gilpin introduced his Repeal Bill on 9 Jul (1872) no more than 34 MPs were in their places and the Bill was ignominiously counted out. A better attended attack on the system took place on Jul when Jacob Bright moved to reduce the pay of the police in charge of the Acts. After a lively debate he obtained 74 votes v 140. The next year 1873 the Govt took no further action about Bruce's Bill. On 21 May Fowler brought forward his Repeal Bill for its 2nd reading. He pointed out that there had been no division on the main question since 1870. ... There were 128 votes for Repeal against 251. (James Stansfeld by J L and Barbara Hammond p.180)

Biog: William Fowler, MP; Henry Austin Bruce, MP