HC Deb 15 September 1893 vol 17 cc1294-5
MR. HANBURY (Preston)

I beg to ask the right hon. Gentleman the President of the Board of Trade whether he can give the House any information as to the extent and character of the outbreak of cholera at Ashbourne, and especially whether the Local Government Board have any knowledge of the general sanitary condition of the town and the very unsatisfactory condition of the water supply?


I despatched a Local Government Board Inspector to Ashbourne immediately on learning of this outbreak. He reports to me that this particular yard is of a very dirty and disreputable character. There are 39 residents in this one yard. There have been 15 attacks and nine deaths. In one house there were six cases and three deaths. When I tell the House the circumstances of the yard, I think they will not be surprised at the outbreak. There is a water-closet, used by tramps, paupers, and strangers, attached to a public-house. The soil pipe of this water-closet leaks into the soil within 2 ft. of the well. The well has now been pumped out and filled in with quicklime, and since those measures have been taken no fresh attack has, up to midday to-day, taken place. Dr. Low reports also that there is much enteric fever and diarrhœa in Ashbourne, and that it has a bad sanitary reputation. I can assure my hon. Friend and the House that I mean to push this case to the extreme, with a view to seeing what the powers of the Local Government Board really are, if the Rural Sanitary Authorities decline, as I have no reason to suppose they will, to deal with the matter.


Bearing in mind the statement made by the Leader of the Opposition yesterday as to the insanitary condition of towns in Ireland, may I ask the Chief Secretary if he has reason to believe any Irish town is in as bad a state as Ashbourne?


was understood to say he hoped not, but he had no information on the matter.