HC Deb 17 November 1884 vol 293 c1824

asked the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, What decision the Government have arrived at regarding the continuance of Captain Whelan in the position of a Resident Magistrate; and, if the services of District Inspector Smith are to be continued at Portadown?


The riot which occurred at Portadown on the 22nd ultimo has been the subject of the careful consideration of the Government. I very much regret that my hon. Friend and others should have suffered from the extreme violence of the mob. I further very much regret that the Local Authorities did not come to the determination of having a larger force of police upon the ground on the occasion. The Resident Magistrate, Captain Whelan, is now, and has been for some time previous to this disturbance, in a state of health which quite incapacitated him from discharging the duties of his office, at all events for the time being. He is seriously to blame for not having acquainted the Government with the fact, and having some arrangement made to have a properly qualified magistrate placed in charge of the police. A medical examination will be made of his case, and if it is found that he is not capacitated for further duty he will be retired on pension. As regards District Inspector Smith, he has been censured for not sending for reinforcements of police upon the second occasion, as His Excellency is not satisfied that so small a force should have been provided for the protection of the persons present. On the other hand, Mr. Smith is to be commended for having taken the control of the police in hand himself while he was temporarily upon a sick bed. Under all the circumstances, the Government does not see any necessity for removing him from Portadown.


I beg to give Notice that I shall, upon this day week, ask, Whether Captain Whelan has not sent in his resignation?