A public meeting was held today at the London Tavern,
Bisbopsgate Street, "for the purpose of taking into consideration the alarming dis- tress at present existing among the operatives of Paisley and other manufacturing districts in Renfrewshire." The meeting was not numerously attended. In taking the chair, Sheriff Rogers said, that several other civic Magistrates had been asked to preside, but their avocations took them elsewhere. He reminded the meeting, that there were no poor-laws in Scotland like those in England, and that con- sequently the poor sufferers of Scotland had no legal claim for relief. Dr. Burns, one of the deputation from Paisley, also alluded to the state of the poor-law in Scotland ; and observed, that if legislative remedies might be recommended, they could not be had recourse to in a day, but the instant necessity of the people of Paisley demanded an immediate appeal to the benevolence of the public in England. The people of the town itself, be ought to show, had not neglected their own duty to. their poor fellow-townsmen : in 1832 they bad raised nearly 20,000!.; but the resources of the town had been greatly crippled ; of 80 manu- facturing firms existing in Paisley in 1837, 50 had since failed, and the number of those who had the best means of affording relief was re- duced more than one-half. Dr. Burns repeated the statistics which we have given under the head of " Scotland " ; and he added, that of the 6,000 destitute persons in Paisley, 4,200 were receiving relief from the Committee when he left Paisley, and he understood that that number had been increased by 1,400. To these 5,600 poor persons the Com- mittee were giving what little was in their power ; but that little was scarcely sufficient to keep body and soul together. The meeting was afterwards addressed by the Reverend Mr. Baird, Captain Atcherly, Lord Kinnaird, Dr. Sleigh, the Reverend Mr. Pren- dergast, Mr. Johnston, and Mr. Carlisle. Resolutions were passed, and a subscription commenced. Among the sums received at the meeting,. were 50/. from Sir Robert Peel, 25/. from Sir James Graham, 50/. front Mr. Hastie the Member for Paisley, 25/. front Mr. Rogers the Chairman.