HC Deb 02 August 1905 vol 150 cc1320-1

To ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland whether his attention has been called to the overcrowding of the insane wards in the Belfast Workhouse, due to the fact that the Belfast Corporation refused to supply the necessary asylum accommodation for the patients, and whether this overcrowding was denounced by the official Inspector of Lunacy in December, 1904, who recommended that inexpensive asylum accommodation should be provided for these patients elsewhere; and whether, seeing that in spite of the official recommendation nothing has been done by the corporation in the matter, and that the number of these patients at the workhouse is increasing, he will order an inquiry into the subject, or cause effective representations to be made to the local authorities with regard to it.

(Answered by Mr. Walter Long.) The number of insane inmates of Belfast Workhouse has, in recent years, been greatly reduced by the transfer of such persons to the Belfast District Lunatic Asylum. Since 1898 the number of insane in the workhouse has been reduced from 436 to ninety-six. In December, 1904, the Inspectors of Lunatic Asylums recommended that inexpensive buildings should be erected in connection with the asylum for the accommodation of the insane inmates of the workhouse. The necessary buildings are now in course of erection.