§ SIR THOMAS ESMONDE (Dublin Co., S.)
I beg to ask the right hon. Gentleman the First Commissioner of Works whether he can give the House any information as to the cause of the rising of the tiles in the Central Hall?
MR. J. W. LOWTHER
My right hon. Friend the First Commissioner of Works has asked me to reply to the question of the hon. Baronet. I am informed that the rising and breakage of the tiles at the south-east side of the Central Hall was produced by the expansion of the tiles and their setting, causing the surface of the floor to rise about six inches in the shape of a small arch. This was the result of the pouring of the rays of a very hot sun through an open casement, and of their falling directly upon a portion of the floor affected. The expansion may probably also, to some extent, be accounted for by the fact that the ornamental centre of the Hall has been recently re-laid in cement, which would probably swell in setting, and so produce pressure on 217 the portion of the tiling which was lifted. Such occurrences are not unknown to persons experienced in tiling, but in this case upheaval took place to an unusual extent. The necessary repair has been temporarily effected, and hon. Members may rest assured that the bed of cement from which the tiles lifted was almost intact and that the defect is only superficial, and can be permanently made good at small cost.