MR. PATRICK O'BRIEN
On behalf of the hon. Member for South Monaghan, I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland whether he is aware that a number of tramps have been frequenting the workhouse of Carrickmacross during the past years, and that members of this class attempted to burn that workhouse recently; whether the inspector to the Local Government Board of Carrickmacross district has reported upon this tramps nuisance, and suggested any remedy, or will he ask a report from him on this subject; and whether, seeing that casuals to workhouses do not work, but walk from workhouse to workhouse, which are built so near to each other that it is recreation for them, he will consider the advisability of compulsory amalgamation of workhouses, which would be an inducement to make able bodied tramps work if they had longer journeys from one workhouse to another.
§ THE CHIEF SECRETARY FOR IRELAND (Mr. G. W. BALFOUR,) Leeds, Central
I have already stated that it is probable a large number of the admissions to the Carrickmacross workhouse belonged 651 to the tramp class. Three persons of this class were recently sent for trial to the assizes charged with an attempt to set fire to the dormitory of the workhouse. As respects the second paragraph, I have nothing to add to the statement made by me on the 26th July. If the guardians desire to confer with the Local Government Board inspector on the subject, he will be instructed to attend before them at any time they may appoint. With reference to the third paragraph, I do not think, having regard to the requirements of the deserving sick and poor, that it would be advisable to close workhouses merely for the purpose of imposing on tramps longer journeys in travelling from one workhouse to another. If amalgamation on general grounds is desirable, and can be carried out without hardship to the sick and destitute, the Board will at all times be glad to further the wishes of the local authorities in the matter.