HC Deb 01 June 1883 vol 279 c1480

asked the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, If the Irish Local Government Board received, some months ago, certain letters complaining of irregular and grossly immoral conduct on the part of some of the officials of Lurgan Workhouse; if it has been charged that the pauper diet has been greatly curtailed; if it has also been charged that female pauper lunatic inmates have given birth to illegitimate children, the putative fathers being men employed in the Workhouse; and, if so, whether any steps will be taken to institute a searching inquiry with a view to the punishment of the guilty parties?


Sir, no charges of the kind referred to have been received, except such as were contained in two anonymous letters from the same individual, who signs himself "A Heavy Ratepayer," and, therefore, professes to be a person of position. If the charges are true, he ought to come forward and make them publicly. If they are not true, all I can say is that his letters are as foul and atrocious libels as I ever read. If the hon. Member has any authenticated statements on the subject, and will furnish them to me with the authority, I will have inquiry made.


The ratepayer referred to in the right hon. Gentleman's Answer is a most respectable man; and I shall communicate with him, in order to endeavour, if possible, to induce him to come forward personally and substantiate his charges.