§ MR. O'NEILL
(Antrim, Mid): I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland if he will state the reasons for the proposed change of the head quarters of the Royal Irish Constabulary from Ballymena to Lisburn; 1848 if he is aware that Ballymena is the centre of the county, with railway communication north, south, and east, and sufficient hotel accommodation, whereas Lisburn is situated at the extreme south of the county, and, therefore, much more difficult of access to the greater part of the county; and what steps he will take to prevent the proposed change?
§ THE CHIEF SECRETARY FOR IRELAND (Mr. A. J. BALFOUR,) Manchester, E.
I do not know that I can add anything to the answer which I gave to a question on the same subject by the hon. and learned Member for North Longford (Mr. T. M. Healy), namely, that—The removal of the head quarters of the Royal Irish Constabulary of the County Antrim from Ballymena to Lisburn has been for some time under consideration, and has been decided upon in the public interest. Next to Belfast, Lisburn is now the largest and most important town in the county; its population has within a few years largely increased. It is close to the Assize town where all the county officers reside, and possesses the requirements necessary for the accommodation of the county head quarters of the Force. The change is being made on the recommendation of the Inspector General.The Inspector General, however, adds that a difficulty is now experienced in obtaining a suitable house for the County Inpector at Lisburn, and that the removal of the head quarters has, therefore, been, for the present, suspended.