§ MR. J. P. FARRELL (Cavan, W.)
I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, whether his attention has been called to numerous reports of the existence of coal of a very bituminous quality in the immediate vicinity of Kilnaleck, in the western division of Cavan; whether he is aware that numerous Scotch and English experts have visited the mines and favourably reported on the feasibility of developing them; and, whether, in view of the fact that at present there is no nearer railway station than Ballywillan, on the Midland Great Western Railway, or Oldcastle, on the Great Northern Railway, the former being nine and the latter eight miles from these coal beds, and considering the great advantage to the people of this district which the opening of these mines would mean, the Government will favourably consider a proposal to give a free grant for the purposes of railway extension in this locality?
§ THE CHIEF SECRETARY FOR IRELAND (Mr. GERALD BALFOUR,) Leeds, Central
I am aware that there is a coal mine in this locality which has not 873 been worked for a number of years, and that several experts have visited the locality, though I have no knowledge of the conclusions arrived at by them. The Grand Jury of the County Cavan have passed a resolution in favour of the extension of the line of railway from Oldcastle to Kilnaleck, and this proposal will be considered in connection with other similar proposals.
§ MR. J. P. FARRELL
Can the right hon. Gentleman give any idea as to the time when the Government will introduce the promised Railway Bill?
§ MR. GERALD BALFOUR
I hope to be able to introduce it before Whitsuntide, but I cannot say anything more definite than that.