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v. Justices of Sussex
MELLOR J. (after stating the substance of the writ and return.) It was urged before us that the Sessions were justified in their decision by the fact, that the appellant parish had been guilty of laches in not giving notice of the grounds of appeal in due time before the Sessions, either "with the notice of appeal,” or fourteen days at the least before the first day of the Sessions at Lewes, or before the 18th October, on which day the Sessions were held at Chichester for the Western division of the county. The latter point was not much pressed, and it appears to me to be the prudent course, in a matter of this kind, to abide by a former decision of this Court in the case of Reg. v. The Justices of Suffolk (a). The Sessions at Chichester must have been holden by adjournment from Lewes, and in contemplation of law were a continuation of those Sessions, and consequently the 15th, and not the 18th day of October was, for the purpose of computing the fourteen days for giving notice of the grounds of appeal, “the first day of the Sessions."
The question of laches, as it was put in the argument, is not disposed of by the determination of this point; and it becomes necessary, therefore, to consider the grounds upon
which it was contended that there was such laches on the part of the appellants in this case as disentitled them to respite their appeal. It was insisted that the appellants were bound to have given notice of the grounds of their appeal fourteen days at least before the first day of the Sessions, and that if, by reason of their availing themselves of the twenty-one days allowed by sect. 79 of the 4 & 5 W. 4. c. 76., extended by the additional days given by sect. 9 of the 11 & 12 Vict. c. 31., they were too late to give such fourteen days notice of the (a) 16 L. J. M. C. 36; 4 D. & L. 628. 2 x
B. & s.
1862. grounds of their appeal, it was owing to their own neg. The Queen lect, and that it followed as of course that they Justices of
not entitled to be heard in support of their appeal, and Sussex,
that the Sessions were not bound to respite the same. Upon consideration of the statutes and decisions, I have come to the contrary conclusion.
By the 4 & 5 W. 4. c. 76. s. 79. it was provided that no poor person should be removed or removable until twenty-one days after a notice in writing of his being chargeable, accompanied by a copy of the order of removal and by a copy of the examination upon which such order was made, should have been sent by the officers of the removing parish to the officers of the parish to which such order was directed, with a proviso for the case of earlier submission to the order in manner therein mentioned. It has been in several cases declared that the object of the Legislature, in giving this delay of twenty one days in the execution of the order, was to afford opportunity for the parish upon which such order was made to inquire and consider whether they had any sufficient ground of objection thereto; Reg. v. The Justices of Lancashire (a). And in Reg. v. The Justices of the West Riding (6), although under the particular circumstances of that case the Court discharged the rule for a mandamus, Lord Campbell, in delivering the judgment of the Court, said, p.718, "As a rule, we think that the parties appealing are entitled to take the twenty-one days and the fourteen days mentioned in stat. 11 & 12 Vict. c. 31. s. 9., and that, if, at the expiration of the last of those days, there is time to give effective notice of trial of the appeal at the then next Sessions, such notice ought to be given; but that, if there is not time to give such notice of trial, the appeal ought to be entered and (a) 4 Q. B. 910. 913.
(6) E. B. & E. 713.
V. Justices of
respited at the then next Sessions following the expi- 1862. ration of the fourteen days : such an entry and respite The Queen will be the only step the appellant can then take to shew his intention to prosecute his appeal, as he will do so at the peril of being obliged to pay costs in case he omits further to prosecute it: and this is in accordance with the modern practice.” The statute, referred to by Lord Campbell, of 11 & 12 Vict. c. 31., by sects. 1 and 2 substitutes a notice of grounds of removal for a copy of the examinations required to be sent with the copy of the order by the Act of 4 & 5 W. 4. c. 76.; but, by sect. 3, entitles the officers of the parish to which an order of removal is directed, to apply, within the twentyone days, for a copy of the depositions; and by sect. 9 extends the period within which notice of appeal must be given to fourteen days after the sending of such copy
of the depositions to the officers of the parish so applying for the same. By the 4 & 5 W. 4. c. 76. s. 81. it is enacted that, in every case where notice of appeal against an order of removal shall be given, the officers of the parish appealing against such order shall, “ with such notice, or fourteen days at least before the first day of the Sessions at which such appeal is intended to be tried,” send or deliver to the officers of the respondent parish a statement in writing under their hands of the grounds of such appeal, “and it shall not be lawful for the overseers of such appellant parish to be heard in support of such appeal unless such notice and statement shall have been so given as aforesaid.” The statute 11 & 12 Vict. c. 31. s. 4. gives a legislative declaration, if any were wanting, of the object of interchanging the grounds of removal and the grounds of appeal, by reciting as follows: "And whereas a state
1862. ment of the grounds of removal or of appeal is required The QUEEN to be communicated for the purpose of enabling the Justices of party receiving it to inquire into the subject of such Sussex.
statement, and, if need be, to prepare for trial" and, by sect. 11, the Act of 4 & 5 W. 4. c. 76. and that Act are to be construed as one Act.
These provisions enable us to understand the true meaning of the expression, “time to give effective notice of trial,” used by Lord Campbell in delivering the judgment of this Court in the case of Reg. v. The Justices of the West Riding (a).
Time to give an effective notice of trial of appeal must, I think, be calculated by allowing twenty-one days, with any addition arising from a copy of the depositions having been applied for under 11 & 12 Vict. c. 31. s. 3. If, at the expiration of that period, there be time to give the notice required by the practice of the Sessions and also to give the fourteen days notice at least of the grounds of appeal, before the first day of the next Sessions, then the entry and trial of the appeal must take place at those Sessions, unless adjourned under the general authority of the Court; but, if there be not time to give the fourteen day notice of the grounds of appeal before the first day of such Sessions, then no notice of trial can be effective, and the appellant parish is entitled, as a matter of right, to enter and respite the appeal, and no question of laches can arise.
Soon after the passing of the Act 4 & 5 W. 4. c. 76., it was decided that it did not alter or affect the time prescribed by the rules of practice of the different Courts of Quarter Sessions for giving notice of appeal; Rex v. The Justices of Suffolk (6), and Reg. v. The Inhabitants of Draughton (c). The time so required (a) E. B. f. E. 713.
(6) 4 A. & E. 319. (c) 2 P. & D. 224: 8 L. J. M. C. 92.
v. Justices of Sussex,
varies, as we know, very considerably; and it appears to me that it would frustrate to a great extent the object of the statute, in requiring the statement of the grounds of appeal to be sent or delivered to the officers of the respondent parish, if we were to hold that the words, “with such notice, or fourteen days at least before the first day of the Sessions at which such appeal is intended to be tried," meant to give the varying time required for the notice of appeal by the practice of the different Sessions, as the equivalent alternative of “fourteen days at least” for giving notice of the grounds of appeal.
I think that the true meaning of the section is that, if the time required by the practice of the particular Sessions for the notice of appeal be fourteen days at the least, or a longer period, then the statement of the grounds of appeal may be sent with such notice, so as “fourteen days at least" are secured to the officers of the respondent parish “to inquire into the subject of such statement, and if need be, prepare for trial.”
I cannot think that it could have been intended that the grounds of appeal should precede the notice of appeal, and that the appellants, in availing themselves of the time allowed by law for considering whether they would appeal or not, before sending the statement of the grounds of appeal, could be guilty of laches; and it appears to me that, by adhering to this interpretation of the statutes, the mischief will be avoided which might arise, from the Sessions having to decide whether there had been laches or not.
The cases of Reg. v. The Inhabitants of Sevenoaks (a) and Reg. v. The Justices of Peterburough (6), relied upon by Mr. Huddleston, are not at all inconsistent with this (a) 7 Q. B. 136.
b7 E. 8 B, 643.