§ MR. D. MACALEESE (Monaghan, N.)
I beg to ask the Attorney General for Ireland, (1) if he has seen a Resolution passed in Dublin, on Friday last, by the Council of the Irish Tourists' Association, condemnatory of the attempt now being made to exclude the public from the right of way to the Giants' Causeway; (2) whether the Causeway comes within the law for the protection of ancient monuments; and (3) whether, in the event of this being so, he will advise the Crown to step in and stop the preparations now in progress by a syndicate of speculators to interfere with the right of access to this great natural wonder?
§ THE ATTORNEY GENERAL FOR IRELAND (Mr. J. ATKINSON,) Londonderry, N.
My attention has been called to the Resolution mentioned in the first paragraph of the hon. Member's Question. There has been much speculation as to the Giants' Causeway and to what it owes its present formation; but I am not aware that it has ever been suggested that it is the work of man, and it cannot, therefore, be an ancient monument within the statute. [Laughter.] As regards the last paragraph, the Executive have no power whatever to take the course suggested.
§ MR. PATRICK O'BRIEN (Kilkenny)
asked the Attorney General if he was aware that it was claimed to have protection of the law for buildings to be erected at the Causeway; and, if it was public property, would he see that no grabbers were allowed to take it from the public?
§ MR. VESEY KNOX (Londonderry)
asked, as to that part which was below high-water mark, if it was not public property and could not, therefore, be protected from the syndicate?
§ THE ATTORNEY GENERAL FOR IRELAND
All below high-water mark is, of course, the property of the Crown; but that does not entitle the Executive to prevent access over the dry land.