§ MR. FOLEY (Galway, Connemara)
I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland whether he is correctly reported as having recently stated to a deputation on the subject of Irish fisheries, that—Only that morning. he had heard from a benevolent lady who had two large boats constructed regardless of expense, costing, he believed, nearly £1,000 a piece, and she sent them to Clifden for the purpose of developing the fishing industry, but the fishing population there did not know how to manage them, and if they had tried, the only result would have been that the boats would have been wrecked and the crews probably drowned;whether he has since been informed that such statement is incorrect; and whether the Government will, during the present period of intense distress, assist in its alleviation by employing the people in the erection of suitable piers and harbours along the west coast which are greatly required, and the erection of which would facilitate the development of the fishing industry referred to?
§ THE CHIEF SECRETARY FOR IRELAND (Mr. A. J. BALFOUR, Manchester, E.)
The report of the statement attributed to me is substantially correct, except that the vessels were to be used at, not had been actually sent to, Clifden. That statement, which I have no ground for believing to be otherwise than accurate, was based upon the report of the shipbuilder who had built the vessels, and who had, by direction of the proposed donor, visited the neighbourhood with a view to make arrangements for their reception. The erection of piers 223 and harbours is seldom the best way of providing employment in districts where acute distress prevails.