§ MR. J. C. FLYNN (Cork, N.)
I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland—(1) whether he is aware that a very large number of processes (stated at over 200) have been issued at the suit of the Land Commission against the tenants of what was formerly the Salters' and Drapers' estates for the half-yearly instalments due in November last, and that nearly 200 1597 processes were issued last year by the Land Commission against these tenants; (2) if he can state the number of years' purchase at which these tenants purchased their holdings; and, (3) whether, view of these proceedings, instructions will be issued to the Land Purchase Commissioners not to sanction advances of public money in future to intending purchasers in cases in which the holdings are purchased at high prices?
§ MR. GERALD BALFOUR
Out of 1,933 tenant-purchasers on the Salters' and Drapers' estates, whose annual instalments amount to £16,845, the outstanding arrear in respect of the last November gale was only £744 due by 176 payers, and instructions were given by the Land Commissioners to proceed for the recovery of these by civil bill process. The average number of years' purchase on the rents on these two estates was 18.1 on the Salters' estate, and 17.4 on the Drapers' estate. As regards the last paragraph, it would be quite outside the functions of the Executive to do as suggested, but I may state that I have no reason to believe the prices paid on these estates were other than moderate; and I may also observe that on a large section of the Drapers' estate the prices were fixed on the arbitration of an hon. and learned Member, a colleague of the hon. Gentleman.