§ MR. SEAVERNS (Lambeth, Brixton)
I beg to ask the Secretary to the Treasury what is the acreage of land covered by the Zoological Gardens; what is the rent paid to the Government for its use; and what is the estimated rent which would be procurable for the same if offered in the open market.
§ THE FINANCIAL SECRETARY TO THE TREASURY (Mr. MCKENNA,) Monmouthshire, N.
The acreage of the Gardens is approximately 30½ acres and the rent paid to the Commissioners of Woods is £358 Os. 9d. I have no means of estimating what rent would be procurable in the open market.
§ MR. SEAVERNS
I beg to ask the Secretary to the Treasury if, in view of the smallness of the rent which the proprietors of the Zoological Gardens pay to the Government for the use of the land occupied by them, he will suggest to them the propriety of opening the Gardens to the public during certain hours in the week, preferably on Sundays, either without charge or at a nominal charge for admittance, so that the educational advantages of the Gardens may be more generally enjoyed than at present.
§ MR. MCKENNA
I do not think under all the circumstances that the course proposed would be at all desirable. The ordinary charge for admission to the Zoological Gardens is 1s. for adults and 6d. for children, but on Mondays throughout the year, on four days at Easter and again at Whitsuntide, and on two days at Christmas the charge is only 6d. Specially reduced rates are given throughout the year to excursion and school parties, whilst children from the public elementary schools, in charge of their teachers, are admitted on five mornings in each week at the rate of 1d.