Tuesday, 5 May 2015

Foyle College Act 1896



The Royal Assent was given to the Foyle College Act of 1896 on 20th July of that year. Confirmation of this appeared in the London Gazette on 21st July. This was the Act which provided the legal authority for the amalgamation of Foyle College and the Londonderry Academical Institution.

The passing of the Act was not entirely straightforward. The Hansard reports regarding the first reading of the Bill indicate that Foyle's incumbent headmaster, (Maurice Hime), had initially objected to the Foyle College and Londonderry Academical Institution (Amalgamation) Bill. The MP for Londonderry City one Vesey Knox stated that the Irish Society had come to an arrangement with the headmaster and that, "that gentleman's objections had been entirely removed." It also seems that the Bishop of Derry & Raphoe, (William Alexander), who was in 1896 elevated to the position of Primate of All Ireland, had not signed the memorial in favour of the amalgamation.

Mr. W. Johnston who was MP for Belfast South thought that Foyle College was being dealt with very unjustly. He expressed similar views as to the treatment of Maurice Hime, although the comments of Mr Knox did placate him on that point.



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