I beg to ask the President of the Board of Trade whether the New Code of Railway Bye-laws, which was submitted to the Board of Trade upwards of three years ago, and remitted to the railway companies with certain modifications and suggestions, has again been submitted to the Board for confirmation; and, if not, will he state the general tenor of the replies given by the railway companies to the Board's repeated requests for the adoption of a satisfactory code of railway bye-laws.
As the House is aware, railway bye-laws are submitted to the Board of Trade by individual companies desiring to adopt them, and any confirmation by the Board is a confirmation of a particular system of bye-laws so submitted. It is obviously desirable, however, that the bye-laws of the railway companies should be, as far as it is possible to make them, uniform; and the Board of Trade have been using their best efforts to procure that there shall be submitted to them a system of bye-laws, which may be discussed and accepted as a model code. Up to the present the Board of Trade have not succeeded in these negotiations. I am assured that there is no indisposition on the part of the companies to bring the matter to a conclusion, and I venture to hope that they will succeed in agreeing among themselves as to a system of bye-laws submitted either by an individual company or by the Railway Association, and which may be discussed with the representatives of the companies and other persons interested, with a view to their adoption as a model code.