HC Deb 13 November 1906 vol 164 c1305

I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland if ho will explain why the Estates Commissioners, according to their Returns of Advances, are allowing the Act of]903 to be used to perpetuate large grass tracts and uneconomic holdings side by side, and thus promoting the further emigration of working people from the depleted counties of Leinster; why do they not exercise in all such cases their discretion judicially recognised in the Blake-Foster case, and, if the Government disapprove of forcing young people to emigrate, will action be taken under Section 23, sub-section (8), to stop the present abuse of the law.


I have referred this Question to the Estates Commissioners, who inform me that they cannot, in reply to a Parliamentary Question, deal with a general statement as to the conclusions to be drawn from their returns, and as to the effect of their administration of the Act. The Commissioners add, however, that it is their policy to improve the poorer holdings where practicable, and that in their administration they pay due regard to the principles laid down in the Blake-Foster case, as they do to judicial decisions upon the Acts in all matters.