§ MR. COX
asked the Financial Secretary to the Treasury, Whether the Treasury, in the month of June last, intimated their willingness to aid undertakings under the Tramways (Ireland) Act by loans to be made through the Irish Board of Works, and the West Clare Railway Company applied in the same month for a loan on the security of shares having dividends guaranteed in perpetuity by the county of Clare; has the granting of this loan been delayed by the Board of Works down to the present time, although the adequacy of the proposed security is not questioned; has the result of this delay been that the works of the Railway had been partially suspended about two months ago, by which several hundred men were thrown out of employment; whether representations have reached the Government that great distress exists in the district; and, whether they will cause the Board of Works to hasten the completion of this loan, and enable the works to be resumed, which will give large and immediate employment where it is now so badly wanted?
§ THE SECRETARY TO THE TREASURY (Mr. H. H. FOWLER)
said, that serious legal difficulties had arisen in the way of granting to the West Clare Railway Company the loan for which they applied on the security offered by them. The Board of Public Works had had every desire to facilitate in every way in their power the advance of the loan, in order that the works might not be stopped, and that the railway might be completed and opened for traffic. Their Surveyor was now on the spot, and it was hoped that in the course of a few days his Report would be received, and such arrangements made as would enable the works, a portion of which only were suspended, to be resumed.