§ MR. FIELD
To ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland whether it is within the province of the Board of Control of the Royal Canal to use the power vested in them by statute to prevent the Midland Railway Company closing the Broadstone section of the canal, or by their default, in not dredging it, allowing it to become silted up, and thus prevent loads being conveyed by lighters on it; and whether he is aware that at present only about twenty ton loads can be carried, whereas, if kept in order, full loads of fifty tons could be conveyed.
§ (Answered by Mr. Bryce.) As the hon. Member is aware, the Midland Great 1692 Western Railway Company have applied to the Board of Trade, under Section 45 of The Railway and Canal Traffic Act, 1888, for a warrant to abandon the Broad-stone branch of the Royal Canal, and the Board of Trade have deferred the consideration of this question in view of evidence on the subject to be given before the Royal Commission on Canals and Waterways. If it should be decided that the branch is not to be closed, it will be within the province of the Board of Control to see that the railway company put it into proper condition for traffic. The Board of Control are aware that it is not at present in proper condition.
§ MR. FIELD
To ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland whether he can state who are the members of the Board of Control of the Royal Canal; and whether they hold regular meetings and make any attempt to use the powers vested in them by statutes to compel the Midland Great Western Railway Company to carry out their obligation imposed by 8 and 9 Vic, s. 36, c. 119.
§ (Answered by MR. Bryce.) Up to August, 1906, the Board of Control consisted of the three Commissioners of Public Works in Ireland, Sir George Holmes, MR. Stevenson, and MR. Hanson, and at that date two unofficial members, MR. Nooney and MR. Ross, were added. I am informed that the members of the board then conferred together and agreed upon action which they are taking by letter, and otherwise, to put pressure on the railway company to carry out its statutory obligations. Future meetings will be held quarterly to consider the quarterly report transmitted by the railway company, and oftener if there should be occasion.