§ MR. EDWARD BARRY (Cork County, S.)
I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland whether the instructions issued to inspectors under the Land Act of 1903 suggest, in the case of labourers paying rent either in money or in kind to the farmer and not to the vendor, that their status should remain the same as it was previously; and, whether, in view of the specific provisions of the Act requiring each man in exclusive occupation of a parcel of land to be made the owner of it subject to the purchase annuity, he proposes to take 317 any, and, if any, what action in the matter.
The answer to the first part of the Question is in the affirmative. As regards the second part, there are, so far as I am aware, no provisions of the Act requiring that every man in exclusive occupation of a "parcel of land" should be made the owner thereof subject to a purchase annuity; though the policy of the Act certainly seems to require that tenants and sub-tenants of holdings should, as far as possible, be all so dealt with upon the sale of an estate. The interest of the labourer in a plot is not technically a holding within the meaning of the Act. The Estates Commissioners carry out the policy of the Act, so far as they can, and the Government do not consider that any further action in the matter is required.