HC Deb 06 December 1906 vol 166 cc1161-3
DR. AMBROSE (Mayo, W.)

To ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland whether his attention has been called to a resolution of the Westport board of guardians of the 1st instant, requesting the Congested Districts Board, owing to the almost total failure of the potato crop, to grant a reduction of rent to their tenants on the Stoney estate, near Newport, county Mayo, equivalent to that granted by the late landlord; will he see that such reduction is granted; will he see that the Board give a detailed statement of the expenditure of £3,397 on improvements on this estate, and what amount has been spent on the purchase of holdings in the village of Murrivagh; and can he say what amount, if any, Mr. Stoney received from the Board for the purpose of building a fence round the mountain resold to him by the Board.

Answered by Mr. Bryce.) The resolution of the Westport guardians referred to has been received by the Congested Districts Board. The Board had before them at their last meeting an application from some of the tenants asking for a reduction of rent on account of the failure of the potato crop, but decided that they could not grant this request. A considerable sum has been expended on the estate, and the delay in resale has been due solely to the Board's desire to enlarge the holdings of the tenants by dividing amongst them lands which they have purchased in the neighbourhood. The board have provided for a loss of £2,848 in dealing with this estate. Their expenditure has been as follows—

Supervision 319
Mearing Fences 184
Roads and Fences 443
Buildings 110
Drainage 271
Tools 39
Lockspitting 13
House Improvements 61
Miscellaneous 6
Annual charges 372
Annuities to Land Commission 1,520
Surveys 33
Live stock 33
Tenant Interests purchased 506
For the purchase of tenants' interest in the townland of Murrivagh the Board have paid £420. The figures £3,397 given in the Question were taken from the Appendix of the Board's last Annual Report, and included other expenditure besides improvement works. When Mr. Stoney recently agreed to sell to the Board a further area of arable land, on condition that the Board resold to him some mountain land, it was stipulated that the Board should pay half the cost of the construction of a wall between the lands retained by Mr. Stoney and those purchased by the Board, and the Board's share amounts to £165.