11th June 1877
This case has been under consideration together with the copy Minutes of the Vestry Meeting of 1st March last, which accompanied your letter of the 2nd and the Order of the Board has been passed establishing the Scheme in the matter.
The Commissioners have made some alterations in the proposed Scheme with the View of meeting the objections which have been made as far as is consistent with a due regard to the terms of the Foundation and rendering the Charity of the greatest benefit to the Poor inhabitants.
With regard to the Trustees it would be to a great extent a departure from the original terms of the foundations, as well as from the recognized practice for a long series of years, to omit, as ex-officio Trustees, those specified in the scheme as now prepared. The Rector and the Churchwardens have been always the administrators of Latham’s Dole. The 9a 0r 28p of land in Wollaston were expressly awarded under the Act of the 28th George 3rd to the Churchwardens and Overseers. The Constables were in some cases taken as concurrent administrators.
Trustees of the land were appointed by deed up to the year 1834, the retiring Trustees conveying the same to their successors.
Under the altered circumstances of the present time it has not been thought necessary to introduce the Overseers and Constables as Trustees, but the Commissioners see no ground for excluding the rector or Churchwardens.
There does not appear to have been any instance of election by the Parish of the administrators of the Charities, and the election of such distributors, if frequent, would probably be liable to much objection, where some of the electing body may seek to be participators in the gifts. The Commissioners are, however, disposed to assent to the election by the Vestry at reasonable intervals of a certain number of Trustees to fill up the number as they are casually reduced. An alteration in the 4th Clause of the scheme has therefore been made with that object.
The intention of the founders mentioned in the resolution which has been forwarded refers it is presumed to William May’s Charity. The Commissioners have, to remove all such ground of objection, added to the 15th Clause the precise words of the will as stated in the Parliamentary Report of the Charity By the same Clause any interest which may be claimed, by the poor kindred of the founder is preserved.
The Scheme now proposed (Clause 15 subsection 1) differs in few respects from the Clause No. 72 which was suggested as a form sometimes in use, and an addition has now been made of some words that had been omitted. The introduction of subsections 2 and 3 in the present Scheme does not alter the first subsection, but only enables the Trustees to exercise a wider discretion in rendering the Charities as far as possible beneficial.
The distribution of doles of a few shillings a-piece among a number of persons is found to be universally of a demoralising character encouraging the poor in habits of solicitation and opposed to self dependence. The subsections 2 and 3 are designed to promote an application of the fund which by improving the condition of the poor and raising their standards of well being shall tend to remove or diminish the causes of poverty. There does not seem any reason why the Trustees should not be authorised to deal with the Charities in this direction when they see their way to doing so.
A print of the Order establishing the Scheme as altered is now transmitted and your explanation to the memorialists of the changes which have been made and of the reasons for adhering in other respects to the proposed Scheme will, it is hoped, be satisfactory.
I am Sir
Your obedient Servant
Hen M Vane
Mr Wm Wilkins