HC Deb 26 June 1891 vol 354 cc1589-90
MR. LAWSON (St. Pancras, W.)

I beg to ask the President of the Board of Agriculture whether he has sanctioned the employment and payment of the three veterinary officers, attached to his Department in London, by the Royal Agricultural Society of England and the Directors of the Yorkshire Show, to attend the shows of those Societies this year; whether the Principal Veterinary Surgeon to the Board, having an annual salary of £1,000, has, during the last three years, held the post of Principal to the largest Veterinary College in Great Britain; whether his predecessor resided at this institution; and why he is not required to give his whole time to the public service like the Principal Veterinary Surgeon to the Army?


In reply to the first paragraph, the facts are as stated in the question. It has for several years been the practice for one or other of the veterinary officers of the Board to attend certain agricultural shows. No loss to the public service is involved, as these officers deduct the time they spend at the shows from the annual holidays to which they are entitled, and considerable advantage arises from their intercourse with leading agriculturists and from the information they obtain as to the circumstances of the various districts of the country. With regard to the second portion of the question, it is the fact that Professor Brown, the head of the Veterinary Department, has for three years been principal of the Royal Veterinary College, and his predecessor did reside at that institution. In reply to the last paragraph, the reason why Professor Brown has not been required to give up that appointment is that I found the arrangement in existence when I succeeded to the charge of the Agricultural Department, and I have seen no reason up to the present to disturb it.