HC Deb 11 June 1861 vol 163 cc936-7

said, he would beg to ask the Vice President of the Council of Education, "Whether the Department of Science and Art have received any information from the Royal Dublin Society that, at a special meeting of its members on Monday last, it was resolved to refuse compliance with the desire of the Department that the Botanic Gardens at Glasnevin should be open to the public after the hours of Divine Service on Sundays; and, if so, whether it is intended to take any further steps to secure the carrying out of this object?


said, he had to express his regret that he had been prevented by unavoidable business from attending in his place on the preceding evening for the purpose of answering that question. The Department of Science and Art had received a communication of the description to which the hon. Gentleman referred from the Royal Dublin Society. That Department had given it as their opinion that the Glasnevin Gardens should be open on the Sundays in the same way as the gardens at Kew and at Hampton Court; but they had no power to coerce the Society to throw open those gardens, unless they were to recommend to Parliament to withdraw the sum voted for that purpose; and that course they were not prepared to take. The Society were to receive £8,000 from Parliament this year, against a sum of £1,300 subscribed by its members; and the proper time for the consideration of the question would be when the Estimate was brought before the House.