§ MR. G. MURNAGHAN (Tyrone, Mid)
I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland (1) whether he is aware that certain tenant farmers in Ireland, commonly known as glebe tenants, purchased in 1874 their holdings at 22½ and 25 years' purchase 1347 of the then rental, and that the rent of 1874 is an impossible one now owing to the great fall in price of farm produce; (2) is he also aware that a number of these tenants have been paying for 23 years interest at a high rate on three-fourths of the purchase money advanced by Government to purchase their holdings; and, (3)as these tenants can no longer pay high interest on the money due to the State, will he consider their case with a view to giving them a share in the benefits of recent land legislation?
§ MR. GERALD BALFOUR
The average rate at which glebe tenant purchasers purchased their holdings under the Irish Church Act of 1869 may be taken at 22½years' purchase of the rental. The fact is not as stated in the second paragraph. The cases of these tenant purchasers were dealt with by the Land Acts of 1885 and 1887 with the result, generally, that their instalments have since been at a similar rate to those of purchasers under the Ash-bourne Act—the instalments including interest being at the rate of 3⅛per cent. Moreover, Section 26 of the Land Act of last year extended further advantages to Church purchasers as well as to other tenant purchasers. The question in the third paragraph seems, therefore, to have been put in ignorance of the facts.