HC Deb 03 February 1904 vol 129 cc192-3
MR. JAMES O'KELLY (Roscommon, N.)

To ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland whether, in view of the failure of the crops, and the consequent distress in the West of Ireland, he will bring in a Bill enabling district councils to purchase and distribute seed potatoes among the small tenant farmers.

(Answered by Mr. Wyndham.) It is unfortunately true that there has been a shortage in the yield of the crops in parts of Ireland due to the unfavourable climatic conditions that prevailed in the latter months of the past season, but it is not apprehended that the shortage is such as to lead to the occurrence of anything approaching exceptional distress. Although the potato crop was rather below the average it was by no means a failure, and I am advised by the Local Government Board that there are not sufficient grounds for introducing legislation with the object mentioned.