HC Deb 18 February 1904 vol 130 cc254-5
MR. COGAN (Wicklow, E.)

I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland whether he is aware that the Arklow Pier and Harbour was constructed by the Board of Public Works, that the people of Arklow and adjoining baronies guaranteed the repayment of the cost of its construction, that from an engineering point of view it shortly afterwards proved to be unsuited to its original purpose, and that for many months past navigation has been impossible, imposing loss and suffering upon the fishing population and threatening the chief industries of the town and district with extinction; and whether, seeing that the Board's engineer insisted on building the harbour on its present plan in opposition to the advice and warning of the people of Arklow, and that the Harbour Board and other local bodies have for years been calling upon the Government to remedy the existing state of things, he will now take the necessary steps to put an end to them and safeguard public interests in this harbour.


The existing harbour was constructed by the Board of Works to replace one previously built by local effort, and which was destroyed by the sea in 1877. The cost was defrayed by loans amounting to £23,500, and by free Government grants amounting to £18,500. The plan of the harbour works was favourably reported on by two independent engineers, a copy of whose report was presented to Parliament in 1886. The works were successful in keeping the harbour practically clear of sand from 1887, the date of their completion, until last year, when, as a result of heavy gales, a sand bar was formed at the entrance to the. harbour. An engineer of the Board of Works has recently surveyed the harbour, and his report is about to be communicated to the Harbour Commissioners.

MR. JOHN REDMOND (Waterford)

Is the statement correct that this harbour was built on a plan opposed by the local people, who, now it has gone wrong, are told they must remedy it?


Until I have the report I can express no opinion.


It is a very bad case. I hope the right hon. Gentleman will do something.