HC Deb 19 April 1907 vol 172 cc1269-339

Order for Second Reading read.

MR. HOGAN (Tipperary, N.)

, in moving that this Bill be read a second time, said he only desired as an Irish farmer who knew something about land to say it was no use to pass a Land Purchase Bill unless compulsion was put into it, because the landlords and agents in Ireland would always study how to get round it. He begged to move.

MR. CLANCY (Dublin County, N.)

, in seconding the Motion, said the object of the measure had been very briefly indicated by his hon. friend, and perhaps it would be regarded as desirable that, at the beginning of the debate, a somewhat more detailed explanation should be given on behalf of those who were responsible for its provisions. He believed that the Bill was the natural and inevitable consequence of existing legislation and of the experience of the last few years. Let them take the question of land purchase with which the Bill was for the most part concerned. Whatever anyone might think or might have thought of the policy of land purchase, it was several years now since most people came to the conclusion that in that direction alone, so far as Ireland was concerned, might be found the solution of one of the most difficult and thorny problems which had ever engaged the attention of any Legislature in modern times. For one reason alone it was now useless to think of any other solution whatever. Too many occupiers of land in Ireland had already become the owners of their own holdings for anyone to think it possible that the process of purchase should cease till the whole body of ordinary occupiers had been turned into proprietors. But at least two vital facts had been brought into special prominence since the passing of the Irish Land Act of 1903, which showed that, without further legislation, the end which practically all persons now admitted to be inevitable could not in some cases be attained at all, and, in other cases, could be attained only at a risk which Ireland could not afford to run. One of those facts was that the price of land sold under the Land Purchase Acts had gone up in a very extraordinary way without any corresponding increase in the value of the land having taken place. He should not weary the House by going into statistics. It was enough to say what was universally admitted—that the price had gone up since 1903 by at least live or six years purchase of the rent, while at the very same time the price of agricultural commodities had either gone down or remained stationary. No one could deny that that was a very serious matter for Ireland, and he said for Ireland advisedly, because it was Ireland which would suffer if the price turned out to be one which could not be paid by the Irish tenant purchasers. Even within the last few days Answers to certain Questions which had been put to the Secretary for Ireland had brought this fact unpleasantly home to Irish Members and their constituents. They had got in this matter the aid of Imperial credit—no small thing, but the late Government and its Unionist predecessor in 1891 took right good care to surround the lending authority with a triple safeguard against loss. Before the Imperial Treasury could lose a penny by land purchase in Ireland, the land bought, the Imperial grants to Ireland, and the local rates in Ireland, those paid by persons who were not farmers as well as those paid by people who were, must first be exhausted. It was, therefore, a very serious matter for all classes of people in Ireland that the prices paid for Irish land should have risen as they had done, without any known cause beyond that furnished by the conditions on which the purchase money, as the law now stood, was advanced. He confessed he was himself one of those who did not see much or any harm in the establishment of zones within which money must be advanced without the delay caused by inspection. He thought that it would hasten sales, and that it would not lead to the enhancement of prices. But he had come to the conclusion, like most others, that the mere pointing at prices which might be asked and paid, and the dispensing with any inquiry as to whether proper security was taken for the money advanced, had directly and unmistakably tended to inflate artificially the price of the landlords' property, and, accordingly, the first proposal they made in this Bill was to abolish the zones and to revert to the practice, in the case of sales by agreement, of requiring the Land Commission not to advances any money unless they were satisfied that the agreed price was equitable to tenants as well as to owners, and that the repayment of it was amply secured. That was the first proposal in this Bill, and it was one in which Ireland as a whole was interested, though he imagined that the Treasury might well conclude that it was one in which they were interested also. Ireland, as a whole, would have to pay, and Ireland, therefore, must take care, as far as it could, that it did not run too great a risk. The other vital fact to which he had referred as having been brought into special prominence in recent years was that many landlords would not sell at all, no matter what inducements they might receive. This, again, was a very serious matter from more points of view than one. From the point of view of social order it was extremely dangerous to have on one side of the hedge or wall a body of tenant occupiers still groaning under excessive rents, assessed partly on their own improvements, and still in some fear of agents and bailiffs; while on the other side was to be found a contented, if not a very thriving, body of occupying owners. The co-existence of two such bodies would necessarily produce intolerable results. Moreover, one of the duties cast upon the Estates Commissioners appointed under the Act of 1903 was to redistribute the grazing ranches, from which the people were evicted wholesale in the time of the dreadful clearances of the last century, amongst the thousands of tenants now eking out in some mysterious way a miserable existence on patches of land too diminutive to afford them a decent subsistence. But this duty, which was not only cast on the Estates Commissioners, but was one of the principal duties of the Congested Districts Board, could never be performed effectively by either body under the law as it stood, or as long as certain owners of land refused to facilitate its performance; and yet it was absolutely safe to say that till the land to which he referred was opened up to the landless people the Irish land question would remain unsolved. It was really very amusing to hear the right hon. Member for Dover, when dealing with the Land Bill of 1903, repeatedly make statements to the effect that there was "not land enough to go round" amongst the various classes of the agricultural population of Ireland who were without any land, or possessed only too small a portion and asked for some land or for a larger portion than they had. Certainly there would not be enough for all the claimants if a comparatively few graziers, many of whom were not even tenants at will, were allowed to monopolise thousands of acres apiece. But there would be land enough and to spare for those who had none or too little, if those big grazing ranches were made available for division, and it was absolute nonsense to say the reverse. But there was another consideration which must be taken into account. It was surely time to put an end to the reign of the Clanricardes of the country. There were more of them than one. He need not describe them. They were a standing menace to social order; their action as landlords was a perpetual invitation to social strife; from various motives into which he would not enter, they would neither act with consideration or even justice towards their tenants, nor take a fair price for their interest in their estates and go away with the money. Was it expedient that they should be allowed to remain as landlords? It was quite evident that the answer to that question must be in the negative. For these reasons they had come to the conclusion that compulsory sale and compulsory purchase must at last be resorted to and, accordingly, they proposed to give the Estates Commissioners power, where no agreement could be arrived at, and where either the landlord or three-fourths of the tenants put them in motion, to compel the landlord to sell either to themselves or to the tenants,. and to compel the tenants to buy at a price to be fixed by the Commissioners, after having heard the views of all the parties interested, including the tenants, and after having made it certain that the sum advanced was properly secured. That was as regarded the sale of tenanted estates. As to the sale and purchase of parcels of laud for re-distribution amongst the landless people, they proposed to empower the Estates Commissioners, if they could not acquire much land by agreement, to acquire it by compulsion. But the sort of land in regard to which they proposed to give this power was strictly denned, because they did not want to Lear hardly on any large tenant of land who was doing useful service not only to himself, but to the community, by, for instance, the employment of labour. They did not aim at any large farm on which a rent could be fixed, which, though it was one on which the tenant did not reside, was worked by him in conjunction with the holding on which he did reside. They aimed chiefly at those large grazing ranches, a great proportion of which were not tenanted land at all in the technical sense of the term, because they were let out for only eleven months of the year, and the rest of which, though tenanted, were held on an uncertain tenure, and were, therefore, holdings in which the tenants of them had no real interest, and had, as a rule, enough of land without them. They proposed that all such lands as were necessary for the purpose of relieving congestion, for enlarging uneconomic holdings, and for providing land for people who were now without any, should be purchased, by agreement if possible, by compulsion if agreement was unattainable. In regard to purchases of this kind also, they proposed that the Estates Commissioners should have due regard to the owners, and other persons interested in the land, and to the security for the money advanced. Those same powers, he must add, they proposed to give to the Congested Districts Board, by whom, he believed, they were desired, and who at present were hampered on all sides in the performance of the most important work now going on in Ireland, by the want of such powers. He did not think that they were called upon at this time of day to defend the principle of compulsion as applied to land. Since the year 1845 that principle had been embedded in their legislation. Every session power was given to local authorities to acquire compulsorily land at a price fixed by an authority independent of owners and purchasers. In Irish land legislation it had been reported to again and again. Before the Act of 1893, if there were, say, an owner in fee, a leaseholder with a term of 1,000 years, another leaseholder of 200 years, and another with a sixty years term at the time of sale, the lowest down in the scale of owners was the soiling owner, as he was still, for the purpose of sale under the Land Purchase Acts, and, once he made an agreement with the occupying tenants, every owner above him was compulsorily bought out at a price fixed by the constituted tribunal. The Act of 1893 went a step further and provided that, if there were owners between the sixty-year man and the occupying tenants, they also were to be compulsorily redeemed in the same way. The question in all cases was whether there was a public necessity for the application of the compulsory principle, and what they said on that subject was that such a necessity had never existed if it did not exist in the cases now under consideration. When there were thousands and tens of thousands of people without any land at all; when tens of thousands of others were living on patches of land wholly insufficient for their support in decent comfort; when, in consequence of those two facts, there was still a deadly drain of emigration of the very flower of the population, the time in their opinion was past for peddling measures, or for academic discussions on the abstract merits or demerits of the principle of compulsion, or for waiting, like Micawber, for "something to turn up." Ireland could not afford to wait; that was the short and the long of it. At present, a railway company would be empowered to purchase by compulsion the choicest spots of land in England, if it proved that it was for the public advantage that a railway should run through it. Was it of any importance to save a whole people? He would not argue the matter of compulsion further, especially in a House of Commons which was predominantly Liberal, and for the reason that the Liberal Party was pledged to the application of the compulsory principle to Irish land. In 1901 and 1902 the question was specifically raised, and on both those occasions the Leaders of the Liberal Party as well as their followers, speaking of them as a body, voted in favour of compulsion. Amongst them he might mention the present Prime Minister, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, the Secretary of State for War, the Home Secretary, and several others in the front rank of the Party. He could not suppose that they would now recede from the position they adopted five and six years ago. This Bill contained several other proposals dealing with land purchase, but he should notice only two or three of the more important. A good deal had been heard in recent years of the grievances of town tenants in Ireland. Something was done last year to remove those grievances. Clause 13 of this Bill was intended to supplement the Town Tenants Act in a way which would be at once effective and, he believed, entirely unobjectionable to the landlords. The Act of 1903 enabled owners in fee of an estate which was mainly agricultural to sell all non-agricultural holdings on the estate, such as houses in villages and towns, provided they were not the main part of the estate. But the Act also provided that where those non-agricultural holdings were held by middlemen under long leases the provision regarding the compulsory redemption of interests intervening between the owner in fee and the occupying tenants should not operate. It was, in his opinion, an objectless and stupid Amendment, and it had tended to prevent the sale of many small villages and towns, particularly in the West of Ireland. They sought to repeal it, and thus to allow the town tenants in those places to become their own landlords, and thus solve for ever, so far at least as they were concerned, the town tenants question. The matter of sporting rights had been the cause of much friction, bad feeling, and obstruction to the sale of estates. Landlords in many cases had insisted, when selling, on retaining those rights, while the tenants generally had objected to their doing so, on the very intelligible ground that if they did not possess those rights they would constantly be subjected to all sorts of interference in the management of their holdings. There was a very general feeling that sporting rights might be made in many parts of the country a valuable asset, but they could only be made so with the consent and goodwill of the new proprietors, and they therefore proposed that they must henceforth go with the fee simple, unless the new proprietor voluntarily gave them to the old proprietor for his life. They similarly proposed that all gravel, sand, stone and clay should go with the land purchased, except where a quarry was being actually worked by the landlord at the time of the sale, and they did so for a similar reason, namely, that as long as a landlord was allowed to retain such things, which might be absolutely necessary for the proper cultivation and management of a holding, sales would be as they had been, obstructed. The only other proposal regarding land purchase to which he would refer was that regarding the bonus. The Act of 1903 itself contained a provision under which the arrangements then made regarding the bonus might be revised towards the close of next year. It seemed to him that the time had already come for a different arrangement. The original idea in giving a bonus at all was to facilitate sales by bridging the gap between the figure at which the landlord could afford to sell and that at which the tenant could afford to buy. But the provision whereby the bonus given to the landlord rose in proportion to the price he exacted for his land had naturally had the effect of forcing prices up and thus depriving the tenants of the pecuniary advantage which was intended for them by Parliament. They accordingly reverted to the proposal of which he gave notice in 1903, that henceforward the bonus should be in inverse ratio to the price, and, to enable the Estates Commissioners to improve estates and redistribute them, if necessary for the advantage of the tenants, they made the additional proposal that the bonus should be paid only when sales were made to the Commissioners. The landlords were warned four years ago by the provision in the Act of 1903 to which he had referred that if they sought to obtain a very high price and at the same time to pocket the bonus, some such change as this would be made, and they thought it was high time now to make the bonus, before it was exhausted, what it was intended to be by Parliament. He had now gone through the principal provisions of the Bill as far as land purchase was concerned. It remained for him to say a few words regarding the proposed Amendments of the Land Law Acts. They proposed to reduce the statutory term of fifteen years to ten. It might be sufficient to say in defence of that proposal that it was one of the recommendations of the Select Committee over which the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Montrose presided some years ago. They proposed to abolish the right of the landlord to buy in at a price lower than what might be obtained in the open market a tenancy which was put up for sale. It was manifestly unjust that that right should exist. They proposed to repeal what was properly and truly called the "eviction-made-easy" section of the Act of 1887. It was their firm conviction that that provision was responsible for the great majority of the cases in which old tenancies had been broken and their owners thereby deprived of the right to get a fair rent fixed. They proposed that the presumption regarding improvements should be made universal in favour of the tenants. That provision would simply give legal effect to what was the notorious fact in ninety-nine out of every hundred cases that came before the tribunals which fixed rents. Finally, they proposed, by giving a certain class of future tenants the right to fix fair rents, to undo the most disastrous effect of hard and unjust evictions which were made possible mainly by the eviction-made-easy provision which he had just mentioned. He had now to say a few words in anticipation of some objections which might be made to the main and certainly the most far-reaching provision in the Bill, that, namely, regarding compulsory sale and purchase. It might be objected that the machinery provided for carrying out compulsory sales was not adequate. He did not admit anything of the kind. They had deliberately avoided as too cumbrous and expensive such machinery as that provided under the Land Clauses Acts. But, as a matter of fact, the principle on which that machinery was constructed—namely, that independent arbitrators should fix the price—was the very principle of the existing machinery for carrying out sales of which they availed themselves. The Estates Commissioners were a body independent in the same sense in which an arbitrator so-called was independent, and even at present they practically fixed the price, or might do so, in cases of sales outside the zones. If the compulsory principle was applied, they would do exactly the same sort of work as they were doing now in those cases, and if they wanted further assistance the Treasury might provide it. A more important objection that might be made was that such an operation as universal compulsory sale could not be financed. That was the objection taken by the late Prime Minister in 1901 when it was suggested that £120,000,000 would be required. He said that it would be political lunacy to talk of such a thing, though two years after he had become sufficient of a political lunatic as to give his consent to an Act which contemplated an advance of £112,000,000. But he ventured to say that to raise this financial objection was to raise a bogey. In the first place, under this Bill all the land of Ireland now left unsold would not be sold compulsorily. In the second place, the sale of such land as was liable to compulsory sale could not possibly be completed in a year or two years or five years, or even in a longer period. The Treasury at present interposed delays that had astonished most persons, and their resources in creating fresh causes of delay were not exhausted. Besides, the distribution of the purchase money was not, as many landlords and tenants knew, an easy matter or one shortly dealt with. Even as it was, it took years before it was completed, and not till the final order of the Land Commission on that subject was made need the advance be made by the Treasury. At the present moment, without compulsion, but with the zones in operation, which, so far as the Treasury was concerned, had much the same result, there was over £1,000,000 intended for land purchase lying in bank unused. The objection was, he repeated, a bogey. Compulsory sale and purchase, so far as it could operate under this Bill, would not be a short operation; but the difference it would make was that it would absolutely secure that every perch of land required to be sold to occupying proprietors would pass, at all events long before the present, generation had passed away, into such hands. The Irish land question was not yet solved. He lamented the fact because that question blocked, more or less, the way to all other reforms on which the Irish nation was bent. They desired sincerely to solve it as soon as possible without injustice to a single landlord in Ireland; and with that desire they presented this Bill to the judgment of Parliament.

Motion made, and Question proposed, "That the Bill be now read a second time."


said he did not think that at the present time there was money ready to pay any man whose property might be taken from him. He believed in land purchase in Ireland, and he had done so since the Act of 1870 was passed. Since then it had become more and more inevitable by each of the almost annual Land Acts which had been passed. That was the only way out of the morass into which the kind question in Ireland had got—the only way to terminate the dual ownership which had been working so unfortunately. He believed in the principle of compulsory purchase as a means of ending the question in all cases where it could be shown that there had been a reasonable effort to bring about voluntary purchase and the effort had failed to accomplish the desired end, and where the persons whose lands were compulsorily taken could be paid in prompt cash. But to take lands from a man who did not wish to sell and leave him to wait years for his money was essentially unjust; and, further—even in the interests of a prompt settlement—no man ought to be compelled to sell against his will until he had had a fair chance to sell at a reasonable price and the money was ready to pay him. The Bill now before the House would retard and not accelerate land purchase, involve disputes and the hearing of cases in court with attendant costs and delay, and was an attempt to break through the fundamental principle of the Act of 1903—by far the most successful of all Irish land legislation. The basis on which the Purchase Act of 1903 was passed with the assent and approval of all parties in Ireland was that in sties under the Act the price should, with the bonus percentage, be such as to secure to the landlord his present net income less the cost of collection. The Land Conference; recommended that basis, and the provisions of the Act were, if fairly and properly used by landlords and tenants, well calculated to settle the Irish land question. It was regarded hopefully as a treaty of peace, and a vast number of sales were arranged under its provisions in the first two months after it came into force. Amongst other landlords who sold estates was the hon. Member for Waterford, who obtained a very satisfactory price for an estate of which he was the owner as defined by the Act. Unfortunately the treaty of peace was not fairly observed. An influential section of the Nationalist Party, backed by an important newspaper, set itself to advise the tenants of Ireland to offer prices very much lower than Land Conference terms, and ever since persistent attempts had been made to get rid of, or render unworkable, certain provisions of the Act, more particularly the zone system, by which alone it was possible for a landlord willing to sell his estate to make a definite bargain within the limits of the zones as to the amount of the purchase money he was to receive. If the zone system were done away with he believed the greatest possible blow would be dealt at the sale of land in Ireland. No man cared to offer for sale his whole estate at a price to be settled by somebody else, particularly if he had not the smallest confidence in the somebody else, and believed that he would be actuated by political pressure or other motive to offer an insufficient price. He would not particularise what those motives might be. The earlier Purchase Acts no doubt left it to the Land Commission to decide how much of the agreed price they would advance; but they dealt only with the sale of single holdings separately, and it was quite a common thing for landlords to refuse to sell any holding where the sum sanctioned was in their opinion too small. Many a tenant thereby lost a chance of buying at a price he was quite content with. The Act of 1903 dealt with the sale of whole estates, and the Estates Commission refused to deal with lets than an estate and, therefore, the landlord could not sell one holding and retain another according as the prices sanctioned by the Estates Commissioners were, or were not, satisfactory to him. It must be all or none. The zone system was of the greatest value in enabling both landlords and tenants to agree definitely on a price they considered fair, and binding the Estates Commission to advance it provided it was shown to the Land Commission that the public who were advancing the money were protected by the price being within the limits of what were called the zones—neither too high nor too low. The vast majority of landlords had been quite willing to sell on the terms of the Act. Already about one-third of the tenanted land of Ireland had come under its operation in the three-and-a-half years the Act had been in force. The sales would he oven faster but for the terrible delay in getting paid, which had resulted, from the very success of the Act, in crowding the Court of the Commission, and the state of the money market, which compelled the Treasury to hold back from supplying funds. There were few, if any, landlords who would not accept the terms obtained in the case of the estate of the hon. Member for Waterford. To interfere with the zone system would, he was perfectly certain, put a serious stop on sales. It would also prevent the application of the principle of compulsory purchase in which with proper safeguards he was an entire believer. If any landlords refused to negotiate for sale on Land Conference terms when there was a prospect of reasonably prompt payment of the purchase money, he considered that in the interests of the country, the tenants, and themselves, they should be compelled to sell their tenanted lands. He thought this Bill would delay and not accelerate the application of compulsory purchase. The Bill, in addition to the abolition of the zones, contained a compulsory purchase section, but it would be unworkable. It did not deal with how the money was to be got promptly, and surely there could be no compulsion to sell unless there was money available to pay. The very fact that this block had occurred was preventing the sale of land to-day. As soon as the block was removed and there was a probability of getting a sale he had no doubt that the Estate Commissioners would be fed with applications for sale under the Land Act of 1903. The existence of encumbrances on estates in Ireland rendered it impossible for the landlord in many cases to sell, seeing he could only get a price which would yield him 3½ per cent. while he had to pay interest at the rate of 4, 5, and 6 per cent on the encumbrances. If the zones were abolished more estates would come into the market for sale to the tenants. It seemed to be rather an idle suggestion that there should be at present compulsory purchase, until it had been shown that the landlords had had a reasonable chance of carrying out a voluntary sale. At the present time there were a great many landlords who had not had an opportunity of sale by voluntary agreement owing to the enormous delay caused by the very success of the Land Act of 1903. As to untenanted land, it was proposed by the Bill that it should be purchased at a price to be fixed by the persons who were to become the purchasers. He would not object to buy land even in Ireland on those terms. It appeared to him that that amounted to pure confiscation. On many of those lands there were no tenants—[An HON. MEMBER: That is untrue.]; on large areas there had never been any tenants; there was no question of tenants' rights or tenants' improvements. [Nationalist cries of "Oh, oh."] On portions of them there never had been any tenants or tenants' improvements.

MR. REDDY (King's County, Birr)

That is false.

MR. LANE-FOX (Yorkshire, W.R. Barkston Ash)

said that the hon. Member for King's County had twice interrupted, saying that one statement of the hon. Member for Fermanagh was untrue and that another was false. Was that in order?


said that it was not in order. The hon. Member might use the term that the statement was inaccurate.


said he did not desire to get into any controversy with the hon. Gentleman. What he maintained was that large parts of those untenanted lands had never been in possession of tenants. There was, therefore, no question of tenants' right or of tenants' improvements. Mr. Parnell used to say that Ireland had need of all her sons; and he had read speeches by prominent Nationalists expressing the hope that landlords who had sold to their tenants would continue to live in Ireland on their own lands. The clause in this Bill for providing for their compulsory expropriation at any price the Estates Commission might choose to offer was a curious commentary on that pious hope—a reminder how loyalists of all sorts would be treated by an Irish elective Assembly. And the Bill also proposed to expropriate tenants of non-residential holdings. He was perfectly well aware that in parts of Ireland, more particularly in the west, with which he had been all his life connected, there was pressing need of more land and better land for the people. No one regretted more than he did that economic causes had led to the growth of large grazing farms, and that legislation, such as the Land Act of 1881, had greatly increased the evil by making owners prefer keeping large grazing farms in their own hands as a source of revenue to smaller tillage holdings in the hands of tenants, which involved almost perennial litigation with regard to fixing rent, etc. Was it just that owners of grass lands, whether landlords or tenants, should be compelled to part with them for the benefit of the smaller holders? Let the Congested Districts Board be authorised and be provided with funds to enable them to offer a fair price and they would get plenty of land. He believed there were few if any western landlords who would not be delighted to reduce to a minimum their ownership of land if they could only do so without a loss of income which they could not afford to incur. He did not believe any landlord in the west would refuse to accept the twenty-four and a half years purchase which the hon. Member for Waterford obtained.

MR. JOHN REDMOND (Waterford)

That statement has been made before and publicly contradicted. The figures of the Land Commission have been published more than once. The statement is wholly untrue.


said that of course he accepted the statement which the hon. Member for Waterford had made. But at any rate the purchase price that the hon. and learned Member had obtained was an exceedingly satisfactory one. There would be abundance of land in the West of Ireland to be obtained if the Congested District Board had the funds to offer a similar price. To ask landowners to sell these lands not at such a price as might be agreed upon but at the valuation of the Congested Districts Board, or, worse still, of the Estates Commissioners, was unjust. There was another provision in the Bill of which he desired to speak, and that was the provision to increase the bonus payable to the vendor in proportion to the lowness of the figure at which he agreed to sell. He believed that that extraordinary idea was suggested by one of the Estate Commis- sionerin his evidence before the Viceregal Commission. To a lawyer's mind the whole arrangement as to bonus provided by the Act of 1903 was a very doubtful one when it was considered how many vendors of land were limited owners. It was a sort of legislative bribe to owners to sell, even if they were only tenants for life, as they thereby got the bonus percentage for themselves. The Act of 1903 carefully guarded against abuse by the zone system of prices, whereas the present Bill went in quite a contrary direction. It held out a direct bribe to the limited owner to sacrifice the interests of those in remainder. The cheaper the tenant for life agreed to sacrifice the estate the more he put into his own pocket. An old tenant for life, whose interest from age and encumbrances might be merely nominal, could by selling the property at fifteen years purchase get a personal gift of 15 per cent. of the price; while a conscientious tenant for life who stood out for twenty-three years purchase, less than the hon. Member for Waterford got, and less than Land Conference terms, would get no bonus at all. Such was the idea of an Estates Commissioner, whose decision on prices the Bill proposed to impose on owners. Surely he could not have realised the effect of his words when he suggested such an idea. He (Mr. Fetherstonhaugh) intended to vote for compulsory purchase of tenanted lands. He would vote for any amendment of the Act of 1903 that was well calculated to carry out the purpose and intention of that Act, but he could not vote for such expropriation of untenanted lands as the Bill proposed, nor for any clause that offered bribes to limited owners to commit fraud on those who came after them. He begged to move the rejection of the Bill.

MR. DILLON (Mayo, E.)

said the admirable speech of the hon. Member for North Dublin who seconded the Motion for the Second Reading of the Bill had certainly made the task of those who followed him in support of the Bill very much easier than it might have been, because he had relieved them of the necessity of endeavouring to explain any of its provisions. The Bill was undoubtedly a comprehensive one. It dealt with a great many points of the Irish land question, which, as the hon. Member for North Dublin had truly said, was not settled or nearly settled. At the outset he wished to offer a word of explanation. There were two very important aspects of the Irish land question with which this Bill did not attempt to deal—the finance of Irish land system and the administration of the Acts. They had deliberately abstained from including in their Bill either of those great subjects, because they were really subjects for a Government measure, and a private Member's Bill could hardly usefully attempt to deal with them, although they were questions of vital importance. The financial position of Irish land purchase was at present in an impossible condition. It was impossible for the Government, in his opinion, to leave things as they stood. Ireland had been startled within the last few weeks by the large demands which had been made upon the ratepayers of the country to meet deficiencies in the land system of finance, which it seemed the Treasury had been obliged to take a fortnight to explain. They could not explain it in reply to a Question, and it was a most astonishing condition of things that that should be the case. The Treasury must have ordered these demands to be made on the Irish ratepayers and yet they were unable to explain why. He thought the reason they delayed answering was that they knew that the storm of indignation which would be raised in Ireland would be very great indeed, and they were considering what was the most plausible answer they could give. The ratepayers of Ireland could not say, however, that they had not been warned and repeatedly warned. There was hardly a Member sitting around him who had not in the last three years warned the ratepayers and the tenants of Ireland that they were not justified as Irishmen in assenting to these extravagant prices, because by so doing they were putting a burden on the ratepayers which would bankrupt and destroy the whole community. In his opinion these demands were only the first few raindrops of the coming storm in regard to the finance of Irish land, and the whole public of Ireland, and not the tenants alone, were threatened with financial demands which would be infinitely in excess of the capacity of the country to meet. In his opinion the Government ought to appoint some expert Committee of inquiry, with repre- sentatives of all the interests concerned, including, of course, the Treasury and the ratepayers of Ireland, to inquire into the narrow subject of the soundness or unsoundness of the financial arrangements in respect of land and to report without delay. It was unnecessary for him to recapitulate the main features of the Bill. Its object was, first, the abolition of the zones; secondly, the organisation of the bonus on a rational and just basis, so that it might carry out the intention of Parliament; and, thirdly, the provision of compulsory powers. And then there was the second part of the Bill, to which he attached little less importance than to the first part, as it removed certain grievances in the rent fixing and general arrangements of the Land Court. These were grievances which had been again and again protested against by Irish Nationalist Members. The promoters of the Bill did not make their proposals with any intention or expectation that the old dual ownership system and the rent-fixing system would be revived as against the system of purchase and sale. They had no such expectation, and they held that it was essential to the just and sound working of the provisions of sale which were being carried out that access to the Land Courts under fair conditions should not be denied to the people. Thus, those landlords who were seeking to force people to pay unreasonable prices for their holdings by the use of the machinery of intimidation and pressure now in their hands would have notice that the tenants had an alternative policy; if they did not get fair terms of purchase they would be able to go to the Land Court which was set up by Mr. Gladstone for their emancipation. That was the reason why the promoters of the Bill proposed the necessary alterations in the rent-fixing portion of the Land Court. He believed that if these amendments were introduced into the law it would not have the result which some people feared, of producing an immense crop of demands for judicial rents. It would emancipate the people of Ireland from the intimidation and pressure to which they were subjected by the landlords. The first great provision of the Bill, to which he attached primary importance, was that abolishing the zones. He never had any doubt in his mind as to what the effect of the zone system would be. He had always held and said, while the Bill of 1903 was going through the House and ever since, that the zones combined with the reduction in the rate of interest on the money advanced for purchase and the approval of the reduction of the sinking fund, would result in an enormous and dangerous rise in the prices paid for Irish land. That rise was dangerous to the Irish public, dangerous to the tenant, and in the long run, it would be dangerous to the Treasury, because, although he agreed with the hon. Member for North Dublin that the Treasury had fenced itself round with a triple wall of Irish security before loss could fall upon it, did anybody believe if all the tenantry in the west and other portions of Ireland were reduced to begging and were unable to pay their rent that, in spite of the triple wall, the Treasury would not have to bear some loss? All these elements, therefore, were interested in a sound system of finance. He noticed long before the Act of 1903 was proposed that every year at the landlords' conference the first article of their creed was the abolition of inspection for security, and he said to himself that even if his own moderate intelligence and acquaintance with arithmetic and finance did not inform him, these gentlemen knew what they were about, and if they were so exceedingly anxious for the abolition of inspection for security, they must have an object in putting it in the forefront of their policy. What had been the operation of the Land Purchase Acts up to now? This was an ordinary everyday transaction which was constantly taking place under his own eyes. In regard to a purchase transaction the landlord very often put on pressure in order to induce a tenant to accept his terms. There might be arrears, there was the hanging gale, and there might be a threat to deprive a man of turbary or one of the other innumerable means possessed by Irish landlords for coercing their tenants. The agreement for purchase laid down a certain price, but then the Government valuer came down in order to estimate the security, and in many cases he cut the price down ton or twenty per cent. The effect was that landlords who owned similar estates in the district had ceased to attempt to squeeze the tenants, because they knew by the experience of their neighbour that if they did so they would only be put to the expense of making a new agreement, as the old agreement would be disallowed. The result was that silently and almost unobserved a certain rough standard was sot up in regard to price by the Government inspectors, who were the only protectors of the tenants against the landlords, and the end was peace, because it would no longer pay the landlord to put on pressure. But the moment that condition of things was removed in consequence of the clamour of the landlords under the zone system—an abominable system—the landlords were allowed and even invited to put on all the infinite varieties of pressure which they still possessed in spite of the Land Acts. These restraints having gone it was to the landlords' distinct interest to squeeze the tenant by every moans in his power to agree to the higher price. What was the result? As the hon. Member for North Dublin had said in his admirable speech, the landlords thought that the slightest reason would justify an increase in the price of agricultural land. As the consequence of these transactions the price of land in Ireland had risen in three years by six years purchase. The hon. Member had, however, understated the case, because the price of purchase of land in Ireland had risen on the average all over the country by seven years purchase. In addition to that, the bonus which the House voted in order to enable poor tenants to meet their landlords had been grasped by the latter. That very feebly stated the grievance and the injury which had been inflicted upon the tenants of Ireland. In one district the price had doubled. He could take any hon. Member to the county of Galway and show him two estates side by side, one sold under the Ashbourne Act for twelve years purchase, and the other under the 1903 Act for twenty-four years purchase, and the bonus in addition—twenty-seven years purchase. But that was not all: the forces of the law had been let loose by this Act, and in his own division three landlords were prosecuting their tenants for old arrears of rent in order to compel them to sign agreements for twenty-four years purchase of land which in his opinion was not worth seven years purchase. He would call the attention of the House to the last Report of the Estates Commissioners—an invaluable document which he wished all Englishmen would study. He asked hon. Members to look at the table which set forth the average price of land for the whole of Ireland for the five years preceding the passing of the Act of 1903. That was worked out in terms of cash, and Members should keep in mind the fact that as years went on the number of second term rents included in those purchases had rapidly increased. From 1897 to 1903 the number of second term rents must have been rapidly on the increase. These were the figures for prices of Irish land: second term and first term rents were all lumped together: in 1899 the average price was 19.4 years; in 1900, 19.1 years; in 1901, 18 years; in 1902, 16.8 years; and in 1903, 17 years. He protested against the notion that the purchase should be based on first term rents. Purchase should be based on a fair rent now, and because a man was drawing to a close of his first term rent, which ought to have , come to an end under the Scottish system in seven years, and under the system recommended by the Committee of 1894, in ten years and had been unable to exercise the right of getting a second term rent he protested against the first term rent being used. What was the result of the Act? The average number of years purchase paid in case of sales by landlords direct to tenants with the bonus was equivalent to twenty-five and a half years purchase to the vendor, an increase of something like 50 per cent. on the price in the year immediately preceding the passing of the Act. It had been said, "Oh, but that does not represent the true facts of the case, because in the previous figures you are dealing with first term rents and the last with second term rents. In reality the prices now are just on a par with what they were before." He was very glad the Estates Commissioners had come down to the bedrock and given the price per acre. The average rates per acre paid for all classes of holdings sold by landlords direct to the tenant under the Land Purchase Acts before and since the passing of the Act of 1903 were as follows: Under the Act of 1885, 10.8 cash; Act of 1901, 9.2 stock; Act of 1903, 13.4 cash. That was up to 31st March, and the average rate per acre paid during the five years immediately preceding the passing of the Act of 1903 was 8.9 stock, which amounted to less than £8 in cash, against 13.4 cash paid under the Act of 1903, exclusive of bonus, which with the bonus would realise £15 per acre. The rise had not been justified by anything in the nature of agricultural values. As every farmer in Ireland knew to his bitter cost, the profits of his holding were being steadily eaten into by increased cost of labour, and he hoped in that respect they would be more eaten into. It was far more difficult to make a living out of Irish farming to-day than it was ten years ago, and yet these men were asked to pay 68 per cent. per acre more for the land than was the case before the Act of 1903 was passed. It was to put a stop to that system that they were anxious to do away with the zones. He remembered during the discussion on the Act of 1903 there was a great deal of contention as to what the effect of these zones would be. In his opinion the effect would be to raise the price of land in Ireland to twenty-five years purchase. The right hon. Member for Dover said that was an outrageous statement, and said that what the Government had in contemplation was eighteen years purchase. He (Mr. Dillon) had turned out the truer prophet. The fact was, the zones had raised the price of land to the middle point between the two zones, and that was twenty-five years purchase. But they were not without full warning as to what the intentions of the landlords were. He would read a short extract from a letter written by a leader of the moderate landlords, Mr. Lindsay Talbot Crosbie. That gentleman, writing to the Irish Times of 25th April, 1904, said— It is thus perfectly clear that all the facilities afforded by the employment of State credit and all the bonus or grant in aid is given to the tenant; the tenant and the State between them have to make up the price which they have both agreed should be given to the landlords. Somewhere about twenty-eight years purchase is what the landlord requires, and it is quite immaterial to him how this is made up. If the tenant can give twenty-five years purchase and the State three—which is about what the £12,000,000 would do—the transaction will go forward. That was the deliberate intention of Mr. Talbot Crosbie, an intention he had done his best to carry out. His idea was twenty-five years purchase from the tenant and three years from the State. Therefore he (Mr. Dillon) was perfectly justified in the forecast he made as to the effect of the zones. One great argument constantly used by landlords in Ireland was: "What right had the State to interfere in a free bargain made between the landlord and his tenant? They were agreed that the best course was to sanction the bargain." Those who took that view know little of Irish land. That was the old argument used against Mr. Gladstone in 188l. He remembered Captain O'Callaghan when they went down and started a campaign on his estate. It was a, very hot fight on the most rackrented estate in the whole of Ireland. What did Captain O'Callaghan say? He was charged with rackrenting, and he wrote a letter to the Press, and said a more grossly unjust charge was never made against an Irish landlord. He said he never rackrented his tenants. The people fixed their own rents. "I put up my farms every seven years, and the people fix their rents themselves." That was the old idea of rackrenting. The Irish tenant was not a free agent in these bargains, and until hon. .Members get that into their minds they did not know the A B C of the Irish land question. The tenant was no more a free agent in settling the price of his farm than be was in settling the rent of his farm in Mr. Gladstone's time. In his own district at the present moment landlords were proceeding for rent at dates at which they never called for them before, because these people had refused to sign bargains to pay twenty-four years purchase for land that was not fit to maintain a family even if it were rent free. Therefore, he said the withdrawal of the zone system ought to be brought about. The price of Irish land had been inflated in a manner most dangerous to the Trish community and to the State. It was no wonder that hon. Members who were landlords should be enthusiastic for the Act of 1903—the only men who came off with flying colours were the Irish landlords. Hon. Members talked about their net incomes. Why, landlords now would look with contempt upon their not incomes. Ha would tell the House of a case that crime under his notice. A man had a small estate, from which he never drew a penny of rent for fourteen years. He came over to Ireland after the Act of 1903 was passed, sold his estate, and went back to England saying that this Act was the greatest ever passed, for he was able to secure an income of £400 in gilt-edge securities with the money he received for the purchase of his estate. That was net income in the opinion of some Irish landlords. Another case, illustrating the idea of net income, was that of the Duke of Leinster, one of the first to sell on the security of £l,250,000 of the taxpayers' money. The Duke sold at a price of twenty-four and a half years purchase and he got a bonus from the State of £l12,000; he promptly invested the whole sum in 4½ per cent. security, and added six or seven thousand a year to his net income.

MR. CARLILE (Hertfordshire, St. Albans)

Quite right.


Yes, but was it for that that the Act of 1903 was passed? He was delighted to have that interruption. Was it for that the State advanced the money, that dukes and earls who were millionaires already should add five, six, or seven thousand a year to their net income? Let him turn to one other aspect of this zone system. Let him take an estate in the south-west of Ireland, near Castletownbere, the Pelham-Clinton estate. There the landlord demanded twenty-four years purchase. The tenants, headed by their parish priest, offered eighteen. The landlord would not listen. There was a dispute; the landlord served notice of eviction, and the tenants fortified their houses. That was a nice way to make a bargain. That was the kind of thing into which the Irish people were driven; the tenants fortified their houses and prepared for war. If they had not fortified their houses they would have been compelled to pay twenty-four years purchase, or, at least, twenty-two. Then under the new regulations which the Government substituted for the old regulations under the Land Act last March, and which had been most beneficent in their operations, the Estates Commissioners had power to offer their mediation, and they did offer it, and the landlord agreed to allow the Land Commissioners to send their inspector upon the estate. The Commissioners had no power of compulsion, and if the landlord had been like Lord Clanricarde he would have told them to go to the devil. What was the result in this case? The result was that a schedule was drawn up by the Commissioners under which the tenants were divided into classes. The higher classes were fixed at twenty years purchase, the next at nineteen years purchase, the next at eighteen years, the next at seventeen years, the next at sixteen years, and the next at fifteen years. Bridget Brennan was fixed at twelve years purchase, and Charles O'Neillat twelve years. Non-judicial rents were graded at an average of nine years, and first term rents were graded on an average up to twelve years purchase, coming down to seven and a half years purchase, and in the case of the seven and a half years purchase the poor unfortunate man, who was scraping his living out of that wild country, if his farm had not been valued, and if the tenants had not fortified their houses, would have had to pay three or four times the price—

MR. GILHOOLY (Cork County, W.)

said it was owing to the intervention of the right hon. Gentleman the .Member for Dover that the evictions were abandoned. He intervened between the landlord and the tenants, and Canon McDonnell and he (Mr. Gilhooly) had an interview with the agent, and if it had not been for the intervention of the right hon. Member for Dover the evictions would have been carried out.


That may be true.


It is quite true.


said he was not questioning the statement at all. It did not affect his argument, but rather strengthened it, because, according to that statement, it was only the refusal of the Chief Secretary to carry out the law that prevented that eviction. He humbly submitted that that was not the way to ensure respect for the law, and that it was far better for the Government so to amend the law as to cause it to do justice instead of driving unfortunate tenants into fortifying their houses in order to get justice, and then having the Chief Secretary coming in and refusing to put the law into force. Let him take another case of the operation of the zones, the ease of Mr. J. D. Crosbie, in which the Court of Appeal gave judgment the other day. Mr. Crosbie acted perfectly frankly in the matter. The question was whether arrears could be added to the purchase price, and whether, having added these arrears, the landlord was to get the bonus upon the arrears as well as on the price. The Estates Commissioners thought that a large order, and the Land Judge decided against Mr. Crosbie; but it went to the Court of Appeal. The British Treasury were appalled by the idea that they were to advance British money—Irish money in reality—to pay off these irrecoverable arrears, and in addition give the bonus. What was the judgment of the Court of Appeal? They gave judgment to the effect that the Irish landlord was undoubtedly justified in adding what arrears he could get tenants to agree to pay to the purchase price, which was to be advanced by the Commissioners, and that he was entitled to the bonus on the added price. In the case of Mr. Crosbie's estate, the amount of arrears added to the purchase money was not large, and he did not say that Mr. Crosbie treated his tenants badly, but it was the principle he objected to. Outside of a lunatic asylum there never was a more outrageous principle than that in large parts of Ireland where these rents were not real rents, but were impossible rents, where, in many cases twelve, thirteen, and fourteen years arrears had been carried on over the heads of the people for years and years, the Treasury should be called upon to advance, at the risk of the Irish ratepayers, money to pay landlords those irrecoverable arrears, with the bonus in addition. That was a most monstrous condition of affairs, and it was one which, if it alone stood against the zone system, ought to damn it. In this case it was brought out that a farm on which large arrears—if he remembered rightly, amounting to £243—had accumulated, was a second term judicial rent; it was fixed so high that the man was unable to pay it, and Mr. Crosbie would have made him pay if he was able; that bad debt was to be shifted on as a burden to the ratepayers of Ireland, while the landlord walked away with twenty-four years purchase. He would give one other case illustrative of the effect of the zones, because he was really very anxious to destroy these provisions. In the case of the Baker Estate there was a large farm in the county of Tipperary, of which the rent was considerably over £200—a judicial holding—and an application came before the Commissioners for an advance of £4,500. That sum was within the zones, and that being so, the Commissioners had no right but to advance the money, without inquiry. It so happened, however, that the solicitor, residing in the City of Dublin, got alarmed before the transaction was concluded, and through no virtue of the law, which gave the Commissioners no power to interfere, but through the awakening of the conscience of the solicitor—he was glad to find some solicitors had consciences—notice was given to the Commissioners that the transaction was an unusual one, and they were invited to pronounce upon it. What was that transaction? Mr. Commissioner Bailey in giving judgment said— It was admitted that the advance of £4,500 applied for by the tenant, apparently for the purpose of enabling him to purchase his holding, was made up as follows—seventeen years purchase of rent, £3,400; addition for arrears of rent, £740; and a further addition of £410 to be refunded to the tenant by the owner when the advance was made, to be used by the tenant to pay off a family charge of £350 and an old bill for £60 for rent. It was all within the zones, and all would have been advanced but for the Dublin solicitor. Let the House observe that the zones sanctioned that the effect would be that the credit of the State was to be used for the payment of old family charges, and that had been done on many estates. The system had been largely resorted to in Ireland when the landlord and tenant agreed to apply for twenty-five years purchase, and the landlord agreed to give back two years purchase as a bribe to the tenant. The tenant being a poor man might find that a potent argument which he could not resist, and the Irish taxpayer was sacrificed. He thought that was a corrupt arrangement, although one recognised by the Government. If that transaction on the Baker estate went through, in a case where the solicitor was, he would say, more scrupulous than most solicitors for their clients, the State would have advanced money for private purposes at 2¾ per cent., and the landlord would have obtained the bonus. If he wanted to borrow money it would be quite another story, but landlord and tenant entering into a corrupt arrangement were able to do what he had described. That was the result of the zone system in Ireland. He appealed to the Government not to allow the grass to grow under their feet in putting an end to a system which was hurtful to every class, dangerous in a general way to the community at large, and most dangerous to the well-earned reputation for honesty in making their payments which had been won by the Irish tenantry. With regard to the bonus he would say deliberately that outside of Bedlam nothing more ridiculous was ever put into action. The House would never have passed it except for the relief of a great necessity in Ireland, to oil the springs of an essential industry. It was naturally understood that the bonus was to be at least as much for the benefit of the tenant as of the landlord, but he need hardly say that that disappeared the moment the Act was passed. The tenant never benefited one farthing by it, and he greatly feared he never would. He had said that the present system was a bad system. What was the system? It was this: That the greater the price the more bonus the landlord got. The great gift of £12,000,000, intended to settle the cases of the poor tenantry in the West of Ireland, and generally to make it possible to buy out the poor estates, had been seized upon by the great landlords of Ulster and Leinster, who had obtained under it prices which would make the mouth of any English landlord water, He asserted positively that no English landlord dreamt of getting such prices. And the bonus was availed of by the landlord to squeeze the last cent out of the tenants. Their proposal was very simple: that the man who got more than twenty-three years purchase needed no inducement to sell, whereas the man who sold at a low price required the inducement. Their proposal was one which would make the bonus of some use. He would give the House one instance—a recent instance—of the way in which the bonus was being used. He had mentioned the case of the Duke of Leinster who increased his income by £7,000 a year. Was it for what happened there that the House of Commons passed the Act of 1903? Well, the Earl of Shaftesbury was selling near Belfast at the present moment, and was holding out for twenty-seven and a half years purchase, and if he got that he would at the same time obtain a bonus of 12 per cent. to reward him for the great sacrifice he was making in parting with his lands on those terms. At the same time, if the landlord of a poor estate in Connaught sold at ten or twelve years purchase he would only get half the amount of bonus. Could there be imagined a more criminal waste of the money of the State than that which was accomplished under such a system? He would now say a word about the question of compulsion. The hon. Member for Fermanagh did not undertake to oppose the principle of compulsion, but he drew a picture of the delay in the working of purchase that would be produced by the application of compulsion. He was a lawyer. Heaven protect the Irish tenants from lawyers of that kind. He drew a picture of the delay that would ensue. There was not a single iota of force in his contention. Every single condition he dwelt upon as the result of compulsion existed in the present law. The whole matter of delay or expedition in carrying through sales depended upon the efficiency and adequacy of the staff, and nothing else. In the discussion of the Act of 1903 great weight was laid on the argument with respect to zones, but they had really had no effect on the expedition of sales. He did not pretend that the land of Ireland could be sold in less than five or six years, though he was absolutely certain that it would be possible, by proper machinery, to sell the whole of the land of Ireland within, at the very outside, the next six or seven years. Until the land was sold they would have Ireland studded all over with points of disturbance, which was a most unfortunate condition in which to keep a country. The question of sales was a question of staff. Once they set the law right and doubled the number of men on the staff they would double the quantity of land sold in any single area. There was no difficulty about it, and the whole operation would not be so costly, because the entire business would be soon brought to an end. Nobody would deny that the operating cause which brought about the series of Acts of which the Act of 1903 was the culmination was the disturbed and restless state of the country. If Ireland had been composed of properties like the Leinster and Shaftesbury estates, did they suppose that they would have had all these land Bills? It was a cruel irony of fate that the very men who brought about those great legislative reforms were left in misery still and untouched by them. That was the unanswerable ground on which they claimed compulsion. Unless they had compulsion the present condition of things would go on; and those districts where land purchase was least urgently required would be precisely those districts in which the Act would operate, and the west, south-west, and north-west would be left to stew in their misery, and to create trouble and embarrassment for Chief Secretaries to come. How could a Liberal Chief Secretary face that condition of things with any degree of equanimity? These western people had suffered and fought and won for others that which was denied to them—the right to live decent, civilised lives in the land of their fathers. Could the right hon. Gentleman tell them to wait indefinitely, and that the law must be carried out? It was very difficult for the Chief Secretary, and especially a Liberal Chief Secretary, to see the law carried out. Morally speaking it would be impossible to move great armies of police to carry out the law. Yes, but in what sense to carry out the law? By enabling the landlords, who were deliberately defying the oft-repeated policy of the House, successfully to persist in their defiance, and to maintain a system which had been condemned by the moral sense of England as well as of Ireland—a condemnation which had been sealed by the great Act of 1903. The question was one which would abide no delay. They knew the state of things in the present session, and they were aware of the difficulties, but he most earnestly warned the Government that unless they held out to those western people some such definite hope as was held out by the right hon. Gentleman at the opening of the session—the results of which were more beneficial than perhaps he would ever know to the evicted tenants in Ireland—it would be impossible for Irish Members to give counsel, or if they did give counsel to enforce it upon the tenants, and it would be beyond the limits of human nature to endure what was now going on under their eyes in many instances, namely, great ranches, which within the memory of living persons were inhabited by some of the finest peasantry that ever inhabited any country, being left desolate wastes that it was appalling to see; it would be impossible to teach the people patience when these great ranches were being taken from them by the cupidity of the landlords and graziers—stolen from them, perhaps for ever.

*MR. T. W. RUSSELL (Tyrone, S.)

regretted that the hon. and learned Member for North Fermanagh had left the House, for there were one or two statements of his to which he wished to refer. The hon. Member had said first of all that some of those engaged in this warfare had practically been guilty of a breach of faith, and that he looked upon the Bill itself as nothing less than the breach of a treaty. The second statement which he made was a more extraordinary one, namely, that one of the virtues of the Act of 1903 was that it compelled whole estates to be sold and prevented their being sold in parts. There never was a greater misapprehension of the facts, and if the hon. and learned Member had been present he would have culled his attention to a singular case in point. Mr. Denny, a landlord in the hon. and learned Member's own constituency of North Fermanagh, was engaged in selling his estate, upon which there were some eighty or ninety tenants. He was quite willing to sell to the whole of the tenants, save one, and that one was Mr. Edmund Mitchell. Mr. Mitchell was the opponent of the hon. and learned Gentleman at the late election, and Mr. Denny, whilst willing to sell to all his other tenants, absolutely declined to sell to Mr. Mitchell on any terms whatever. [An HON. MEMBER: Why?] It was not for him to say why. All he had to say was that if the Estates Commissioners declined to purchase because of Mr. Mitchell being excepted—on purely political grounds, he believed—they would have to deprive eighty or ninety tenants of the benefits of purchase. There was not any doubt whatever that all over Ulster people were being left out of purchase agreements for various reasons, and it was a total mistake for the hon. and learned Gentleman to say that the Act secured the sale of estates as a whole. As to the breach of treaty, if he had arrived at many of the conclusions of Nationalist Members on this question, it was because Irish landlords had driven a coach and four through the whole of the arrangements made at the Land Conference and under the Land Act of 1903. What was the arrangement into which the Irish landlords entered when the Land Conference sat? The main arrangement was that the landlords should be secured their second term net income with a fair equivalent for the first term rent. That was accepted by the Landlords' Convention, so that the whole of the Irish landlords, as far as their organisation could bind them, agreed to those terms. That was the contract he himself had entered into as a member of the Land Conference; and that was the contract which the Irish landlords had deliberately and ruthlessly broken. They on their side had not been guilty of a breach of contract. Hon. Members opposite had not been guilty of a breach of contract in introducing this Bill. It was perfectly certain that a great measure like the Act of 1903 would require amendment. This Bill was more than amendment, he agreed; but, whatever it was more had been rendered absolutely necessary by the deliberate breach of faith on the part of the Irish landlords. Let him point out that the zones of the Land Act were not the same as the zones of the Land Conference. In the zones under the Act the price under which sales could be made without inspection was fixed at from 10 to 30 per cent. reduction on second term rents. The zones of the Land Conference were from 15 to 25 per cent. The change was radical. The 10 per cent. reduction enabled the landlord to get the advantage. The tenant never got the advantage of the 30 per cent. reduction throughout the whole progress of the Act. In Ulster estates were being sold right and left, estates belonging to Members of the House, estates belonging to men who attended the Land Conference, and who agreed to what the Conference decided. They sold at 10 per cent. reduction on second term rents. What did that mean? It meant close upon twenty-seven and a half years purchase of those rents and three years bonus in addition—thirty and a half years purchase of second term rents. Would anybody tell him, would the right hon. and learned Gentleman on the Opposition Front Bench contend, that that merely secured the landlord his second term rent? Was that carrying out the terms of the Land Act, or the terms the landlords entered into with the tenants' representatives? The Duke of Leinster's estate was only a sample; many had added thousands of pounds to their incomes by the Act of 1903, though they had covenanted before the whole country that they would be content with the terms winch he had stated. That was a deliberate broach of faith on the part of the Irish landlords. On the question of compulsion he had listened to the hon. and learned Member for North Fermanagh with a great deal of interest. He was glad to think the hon. and learned Member was in favour of compulsion, though he did not think the time had come for it. He (Mr. Russell) would take a case in his own constituency—the estate of Benburb. There were 800 tenants, seven-eighths of whom were what were called loyal men. Most of them were Orangemen. He knew every family on the estate, which was a model one. There was probably not £10 of arrears on the whole place, and the tenants were fairly comfortable men. All round the estate men were buying right and left. The Benburb tenants had offered high terms, but on that estate an impossible price was asked. How long was that to continue? Had they a right to draw a ring fence of occupying owners round these men who were ready to buy but were prevented from doing so? Had a single landlord, a rich and powerful man, the power to thwart the will of Parliament and tell his tenants, "Unless you pay my price, you shall not get the privileges which your neighbours round about you have got?" When was the time for compulsion to come? That case could be matched in every part of Ulster, and the time had come for Parliament to say that the tenants should not be treated in that way, at the will of one man, who was setting aside the clear will of Parliament. Such instances made the case for compulsion. He did not deny that there were very great difficulties in the way of carrying out a complete system of land purchase. He did not doubt that there were great difficulties in the way of compulsion; he did not question the financial difficulties, but they had put their hands to the plough and they were bound to go forward. He did not take the ground that there would be trouble if something were not done. In Ulster they were not given to that sort of thing. [An HON. MEMBER: They never do anything.] He agreed that they never did anything to bring about a change, and that was the reason he said it. They never did anything; they only reaped where others had sown. Parliament was morally bound to see this thing through, and to prevent such difficulties arising. Let him give another instance of how the Act might be evaded. He would take Section 5 of the Act, the most extraordinary section ever put into an Act of Parliament. When the Bill of 1903 was being discussed they contended that it was not fair to put non-judicial tenants, who had never had a rent fixed, on the same terms as men who had had their rent fixed, either a first or a second time. They said that those rents had never been revised, and that the principle that applied to rents which had been fixed ought not to apply to rents which had not been fixed. The then Chief Secretary opposed them, but after a very long debate, lasting more than a day, the Government consented to exempt those men, and to put them under a special clause by themselves. That was to say, they recognised that the prices ought not to be so high as in the case of rents which had been fixed. A new clause was brought up. There was all too little discussion of the Act of 1903; there was anxiety to get it passed at all hazards and costs. What happened? The clause was brought in, and it was now Section 5. It provided for the non-judicial tenants, and allowed the Estates Commissioners, after taking all the circumstances into account, to fix a fair price. It fell into the hands of the law officers of the late Government, and how did it turn out? It turned out that all the circumstances of the case and the interests of the parties merely represented the interests of the landlords and the remainder man, and that the interests of the tenants had not to be taken into account at all. What was happening? Parliament had tried to protect these men, but they were actually paying higher prices under Section 5 than under the zones. Could they be accused of being guilty of a breach of treaty if they asked that these things should be rectified? Then there was the bonus. He agreed with the Member for East Mayo that the present arrangement as to bonuses could not possibly last. Those who were engaged in the discussion outside Parliament had, some of them, contended for a bonus; but they were laughed at, and the idea that Parliament would ever give a bonus was ridiculed. But their contention in the country and when they reached the House was that the State should intervene and make up the difference between what the honest tenant could pay and what an embarrassed landlord could afford to accept. That was the principle on which the bonus was founded and passed. What had happened? Why, the landlord had taken the highest price, twenty-seven and a half years; he got all he wanted, and he collared the 12 per cent. bonus as well. The whole thing was impossible, and could not be put before any Parliament and accepted; it must be revised or go. There were other parts of the Act which he thought ought to receive more attention than they had been given. When they passed the Bill it never was intended, and they never believed that those zones would be applied to congested districts. Unquestionably the Land Conference exempted the congested districts. They specially declared that they should be subjected to altogether different treatment from the ordinary parts of the country. He spoke for himself at all events. When the Act passed he had no idea that it would be possible for the Courts so to construe it as to apply to congested districts. Yet it had taken place. If any of them wanted to have a picture of Irish landlordism, and what it was capable of, he asked them to think of Irish landlordism at the Land Conference, full of moderation, full of fair play, full of a desire to settle the question, and then transfer themselves to the Congested Districts Commission, sitting sometimes at one place and sometimes at another; and he advised them to get a mental photograph of Mr. W. H. Boyd. He advised them to read his evidence. Mr. Boyd was representative of Irish landlords. That gentleman was adopted by the Irish Landlords' Convention, and he sat for live or six days in the witness chair, and there was no antiquated principle of Irish landlordism which he did not revive. Such men seemed to forget that they were not the owners of the soil as an English landlord was. Much of their land belonged to the tenant. The landlord got the land for nothing in the main and never did anything for it. He would be perfectly willing to agree to what he signed at the Land Conference if the landlords would keep their share of the bargain, but they had freed him from the compact because there was not a paragraph in their Report they had not destroyed.


said he could not address the House in the stirring tones of the hon. Member for South Tyrone or of the hon. Member for East Mayo. In the few remarks he desired to make he wished to deal with the question in moderate terms. He must express his surprise at hearing the hon. Member for South Tyrone say that because of what certain landlords had done he freed himself from all the obligations, promises, and undertakings he agreed to at the time of the Land Conference. All he could say was it was a very serious and strange position for a person occupying the position of the hon. Member to take up.


I am afraid I have not made my meaning clear. What I did mean to say was that while I am still ready and willing to give an Irish landlord the privilege of his second term net income, he has broken every engagement at the Land Conference, and therefore I do not feel myself bound to stand by the Land Conference so much as I did at first.


said that was exactly what he understood the hon. Member for South Tyrone to say. Taken all round and not the isolated cases mentioned by the hon. Member for East Mayo and the hon. Member for South Tyrone, the landlords of Ireland as a whole had acted absolutely up to the spirit of the Land Conference and to the spirit which dictated the Act of 1903.

MR. FLAVIN (Kerry, N.)

asked how many landlords had sold at twenty years purchase.


said he would tell the House what had happened in his own part of Ireland. He happened to be the landlord of a small property in Ireland, and after the Act of 1903 became law his tenants came to him and asked if he proposed to sell. He said he would, and they asked for his terms. The majority of his tenants had second term rents fixed, and those who had not he fixed by agreement for the purpose of the sale. He then offered to sell at a reduction of 20 per cent. from the second term rents, which offer was accepted. That was exactly half-way between the top and bottom limit of the zone, and his tenants agreed to those terms. That transaction was typical of the vast majority of transactions in Ireland. [NATIONALIST cries of "No."] He was quite sure that was the case. It had been admitted from the Irish benches that one of the chief objections to the zone system was that it stereotyped the middle price as the price to be paid all round. It had undoubtedly done so in the majority of cases, and landlords and tenants had agreed to an arrangement by which the land was sold at the middle price, a state of things which was contemplated by the Act of 1903.


asked if the hon. Member contended that the Act of 1903 fixed the price at twenty-four years purchase?


said the Land Conference laid down that the landlord was to receive the equivalent of his net income, and a 20 per cent. reduction on the second term rents produced almost exactly that sum. If that were conceded, if it were allowed that by far the greater number of transactions which had taken place under the Act had had that effect, then there could not be any reasonable objection taken to the Act of 1903. It seemed an extraordinary thing that three years after the passing of that Act they should be asked to reverse entirely the policy which was acquiesced in at the time by all parties. He claimed that it had not been shown that the Act of 1903 had failed. There might be isolated anomalies, and it was impossible that in the administration of an Act of such magnitude it could he otherwise. His point was that the cases which had been cited did not necessarily bear the construction which had been placed upon them. Even if they assumed for the moment that they were as bad as they had been pictured it was no argument against the Act of 1903. With reference to the zone system of which the hon. Member for South Tyrone had said so much, and which he seemed to look upon as one of the worst points in the Bill, the zones were arrived at in the Con- ference between the landlords and tenants. Roughly speaking, since 1881 rents had on two occasions been revised in Ireland, once after the passing of the Act of 1881, and then after the lapse of fifteen years from that date. The whole question of the value of a farm was thoroughly gone into in the Land Commission Court and formed the basis and data on which the fair rent was fixed, and it was properly felt by both landlords' and tenants' representatives as well as by the Government of the day, that it was unnecessary that every estate should be re-examined, and the question of the security of the purchase money gone into a second time, and that it would only occasion expense and delay to do so. It was felt that the operation and fixing of fair rent had settled the question sufficiently clearly for all the purposes of the Act of 1903. He maintained that the Government of the day had fulfilled all the obligations upon it in seeing that the holdings were security for the money paid upon them. It was urged that the zones should be removed, and that the Government should see that the current price for land in Ireland was considerably reduced from what it was at present. That was not fair. The House of Commons three years ago and the Land Conference practically settled what was to be a reasonable price to be paid for land in Ireland. That was the chief subject discussed at the Land Conference, and in the House, and the conclusion was deliberately arrived at that a reduction of something between 20 and 40 per cent. would be the proper basis for fixing the price for land in regard to which a fair rent had only been fixed once, and something between 10 and 30 per cent. the price of land where second term rents had been fixed. That conclusion was deliberately arrived at, and there was no reason why, seeing that the decision was come to only three years ago, it should now be violently uprooted and changed by the removal of the zones. Absolutely no case in the course of the debate had been shown why that should be done. He disagreed with the hon. Member for East Mayo on the picture he had drawn of the ordinary landlord in Ireland coercing his tenants. That picture was more than exaggerated, because except in very rare cases it was absolutely untrue. The ordinary landlord in Ireland did not coerce his tenants, and even if landlords were inclined to use coercion they had not got the powers to do so, they had no weapons. But in Ireland the landlord had no desire to coerce his tenants. While he was a landlord had he possessed the desire to coerce his tenants he had no earthly power to do so. His tenants' rents were fixed once every fifteen years, and so long as they were duly paid—and they always were—he had no power over them at all. He did not know whether the picture drawn by the hon. Member for East Mayo was intended to create the impression that it was typical of the ordinary landlord in Ireland, and that he seized every opportunity of bringing pressure on his tenant to pay a higher rent than he could afford. If such a time ever existed it had passed away years ago, and now the rents were fixed by the Land Courts, which were absolutely independent of both landlord and tenant. It was hardly necessary to point out that hon. Members below the gangway represented the tenants alone in this matter. He did not claim to represent the landlords particularly, because he owed his position to the votes of a good many tenant farmers. He entered Parliament in 1903 when this question was uppermost in the minds of Irish representatives. There was a great amount of feeling on the subject in the North of Ireland at that time. The complaint of hon. Members below the gangway was not so much that the tenant was paying too much for his land, but that the landlord was getting too good a bargain. The idea now seemed to prevail that no matter what terms the tenants got, whether they were good or bad, the landlord must at all costs be prevented from making even a tolerable bargain for himself. He would have thought the object of the Nationalist Members would have been achieved if the tenant made a good bargain and acquired his farm at a reasonable price. It was distinctly understood that under the then existing circumstances something more would have to be given to the landlord than had been given in the past in order to bring about a sale. He did not think they had a right to go back now on the principle which guided the House in the passing of the Land Act of 1903. The cases in which landlords had reaped an unfair advantage from the Act of 1903 were very few and far between, and the vast bulk of them had parted with their land on terms and conditions which had left the tenants in a better position than they were before and at the same time had secured the landlords the net income they were getting before the passing of the Act. That was the proper picture to draw of the operation of the Land Act. Instead of being looked upon as a failure, the Act ought to be considered one of the most sucessful measures ever passed. With regard to the Leinster estate he deprecated that the landlord there should be able to make such a large profit out of the sale of his estate to his tenants. It was not his wish that that should happen, and he was sure it was not the wish of the House when the Act was passed. The hon. Member for East Mayo referred to the Leinster estate as a bad case and objected to the Duke of Leinster receiving £1,112,000. He agreed that that was a very large sum of money, but the hon. Member omitted to tell the House that in receiving that immense sum there were a very large number of persons who were turned from tenants to proprietors of their farms, and the annual amount payable by each of these tenants was probably reduced by from 15 to 20 per cent. Would the hon. Member for East Mayo have raised the same objection if the immense estate of the Duke of Leinster had been in the hands of five or six landlords instead of under one landlord? He claimed that the arrangements made on that estate were satisfactory because the tenants were perfectly satisfied. He did not think the House of Commons ever intended that the landlords should make a profit out of the Act. He did not think any good purpose would be served by going into the instances mentioned by the hon. Member, for, even if the facts bore the construction put upon them, they were not typical but exceptional cases, affording no ground or argument for the complete reversal of the principle embodied in the Act of 1903. The hon. Member for East Mayo had called the bonus a fatal gift. [NATIONALIST cheers.] He attributed those cheers to the intense dislike which hon. Members had of the landlords getting anything out of the land. [A NATIONALIST MEMBER: They have already got too much.] The whole objection of hon. Members to the Land Acts was not that the tenants were not getting fairly good terms, but that the landlords were getting far too good terms. If they looked at the question from that point of view they were not likely to arrive at a satisfactory solution of it. The hon. Member for North Dublin County had said that Ireland could not afford to wait any longer for compulsory powers. But even if a Bill for the compulsory acquisition of land were passed to-morrow they would have to wait a considerable number of years before they could get the purchases carried out. The argument of the opponents of the Bill was that there was no use passing the measure now when they had not even the money required by the Voluntary Act at present in force, and working wonderfully well. It was a fact that at no time since the passing of the Act of 1903 had the funds at the disposal of the Estates Commissioners been at all adequate to deal with the cases brought before them at any one moment. That was really the one unfortunate fact in connection with the Act which every Irishman who was anxious for the transfer of property from the landlords to the tenants must deeply deplore. He did not say that there had not been very fair reason for the shortness of money, but it was that fact which had deterred not only landlords, but tenants, from entering into agreements for purchase or sale of holdings. The fact that there was not sufficient money to finance the transactions made it uncertain whether, wider an agreement entered into, no matter how clear or simple, the landlord would receive the money, and that the tenant would actually become the owner of the farm for two or three, or possibly five years. In the circumstances persons could not be expected to make bargains. He felt convinced that, apart from one or two exceptional cases which might either now or at a later date require some exceptional treatment, the Act of 1903 was bringing about tenant proprietorship of the land in Ireland at a rate which was at least as quick as would be secured by any compulsory system that could be introduced. With reference to any exceptional cases or districts which might exist—he had no doubt they did exist—where possible requirements were not met by the provisions of the Act of 1903 he said, "Let there be fresh legisla- tion on fair terms." He was not a representative particularly of the landlords, although he might be called upon to champion their cause from time to time in the House of Commons, and he said that if fresh legislation was necessary to deal with the peculiarities of exceptional districts, precisely the same principle must be adhered to in dealing with those cases as was adhered to in the Act of 1903. That was to say, a landlord, whether in the west, south, or any other part of Ireland, must not be asked to part with his property unless he was property compensated for the same. They had heard of land being sold at seven, eight, nine, or ten years purchase in the West of Ireland. He was afraid his knowledge of the West of Ireland was not sufficient to enable him to say whether those prices were proper or not, but what he said was that if a man was receiving a rental of a certain amount in the West of Ireland where, he presumed, there were fixed rents as in other parts—[NATIONALIST cries of "No"]—if a man was receiving a certain rental from his property, and if in the view of the Land Commission it was likely to be of as much value twenty years hence as to-day, and if that man was forced to sell, he should be assured of a definite income equal to the not income he was at present receiving out of the land. It was a perfectly fair thing to ask. He was certain that if the landlords in the West of Ireland or other exceptional districts were assured that they would receive an income which was approximately equal to the present second term rental, there would be no more difficulty in getting them to sell their property than in the case of landlords like himself in the North of Ireland, who had availed themselves of the Act of 1903.


said they might congratulate themselves that all the hon. Members who had taken part in the debate had advocated the continuation of the policy of selling the land of Ireland to the tenants, which was initiated so far back as 1869, which had been going on ever since, and to which the Act of 1903 gave a great impetus. The hon. Member for South Antrim had represented the Bill now before the House as a complete reversal of the Act of 1903. He did not take that view at all.


I said as regards the compulsory provisions of the Bill.


said that he would deal with the Bill in detail. He could not answer in a moment questions with respect to all the matters it contained. He would endeavour to show, and the House would judge whether he succeeded, that the effect of the Bill would not be to set aside the Act of 1903, but to carry it out in its essential details. The Act of 1903 had provided great benefits for the landlords. It had given them a market where there was no market before. It had given them a bonus of 12 per cent. It had enabled money to be advanced on such reasonable terms, by enlarging the period of repayment, that tenants were induced to give larger prices than they had previously given. The average price of land had risen by six or seven years purchase since the passing of the Act of 1903. Therefore the landlords had undoubtedly obtained very great advantages in addition to the bonus. Had the purchasing tenants obtained similar advantages? [An HON. MEMBER: "Yes."] His hon. friend said "Yes," but he himself did not think they had. The purchasing tenants looked to purchase price with reference to the annuities paid rather than to the amount of money. Comparing the annuities before 1903 with the annuities under the Act of that year, it would be found that they were very much the same in proportion to the rent, and that the purchasing tenant was not receiving any substantial reduction. Before 1903 the annuity ran for a shorter period, and was subject to a decadal reduction. Now it run to sixty-eight and a half years without any hope of remission. If anyone examined impartially what had happened, it was clear that enormous benefits had been conferred by Parliament, benefits which were intended by Parliament to be equally participated in by both landlords and tenants, but which had been practically monopolised by the landlords. That had been the effect of the working of the Act. He did not want to throw any discredit on landlords who had sought to get high prices, but the practical effect had been that the advantage had been obtained by the landlords and not by the tenants. He understood that the main object of the Bill now before the House was to secure a more equal distribution of the benefits. The object, as hon. Members opposite had stated, was to seek to reduce the amount of the purchase money so that some share of the benefit which was intended by Parliament for the tenants would be obtained by them. The State also had undoubtedly a great interest in the matter. The risk involved in the high rates of purchase which prevailed in some districts was a very great one, whilst that involved in the absence of any investigation as to security was also very serious. It was a matter of interest to everyone to see that the prices paid were not excessive but represented the fair value of the land. He did not propose to go through all the clauses of the Bill, but would deal with what appeared to him to be its main features and endeavour to show how far the Government considered its provisions desirable, and how far they were able to give their support to them. The effect of the first clause would be practically to abolish the zone system and to establish a system of inspection in all eases of sales, whether in the case of judicial or of ordinary tenancies. He had never been particularly enamoured of the system of zones. He had always thought that it was rather a risky transaction. The advance of money by the State in large sums without any investigation at all was a system open to the obvious danger that fraud of various kinds might be perpetrated. He believed that in some cases there had been fraud, There was nothing to prevent the tenant who was willing to help his landlord agreeing to a rent absurdly above the value of the land and getting the land on a twenty-seven year purchase, and then the two dividing the purchase money between them. Unless there was some investigation as to security a transaction of that kind might be successfully carried through. Then again rents were fixed for a period of fifteen years, and the rent-fixing authority only took those fifteen years into account. It was quite possible that in respect of turbary, at the end of fifteen years all the turf might have been entirely cut away. On a great many farms the turbary was a consideration which was taken into account. The question whether there was sufficient turbary to last fifteen years was considered, and a considerable portion of the rent was in respect of turbary which was not security. When they applied the zone the term would not be for fifteen but for sixty-eight years, and there was the risk that all the turf would be cut away and that no security would remain. That showed that the more fact that judicial rent had been fixed at a certain sum could not be safely taken as proving that a particular holding was fit to bear for sixty-eight years annuities only 10 per cent. less than the amount of the rent. He had no hesitation in saying that some Modification of the system was necessary and must be enacted by Parliament. He would suggest one modification at least as desirable, namely, that in every case where judicial rent had been fixed by agreement the Estates Commissioners should be directed to inspect the holding. Fully one-third of the judicial rents had been fixed not by the Courts but by agreement. In such cases there was no certainty whatever that the rent represented the value of the holdings as fixed by a judicial tribunal without including the tenants' improvements. Further, routs were frequently fixed by agreement between the parties in cases which were excluded from the Land Acts. The transactions so carried out sometimes involved the fixing of rents at amounts far higher than would be fixed by the Court, and that was a matter which must be considered, because the rents in such cases might have a bearing on the purchase prices. He thought also that it might be desirable to deal with the zone system. The Estates Commissioners should have discretion, if they thought right, and if they had any reason to think that the purchase price was too high, to make an investigation into the whole merits of the case. Another provision of the Bill which entirely commended itself to his mind was that which enabled and, he thought, required the Estates Commissioners, when considering a case outside the zones, to inquire into the question of the equity of the price as between landlord and tenant. As the hon. Member for East Mayo had pointed out, it had been ruled by the learned Judge that Section 5 of the Act of 1903, which directed the equity of the price to be considered before a loan was sanctioned, referred to the equity, not as between the landlord and tenant, but as between the tenant for life effecting the sale and the persons in remainder. They all knew that, in cases where there were a large number of tenants on an estate, there were some exceptional tenants who had not the same privileges as their neighbours owing to the large amount of arrears, and that great pressure was put put upon them, not only by the landlord, but by their fellow-tenants, to agree to what was more than a fair price for the holding in order to carry through the sale of the whole estate. He thought that was a case in which the equity of the price ought to be investigated, and he could see no reasonable objection in point of law against its being done. As to the bonus, it had been pointed out that the effect of the present arrangements was actually to stimulate a man to obtain as high a rent as he could. Was that just? Was it reasonable and right that a man should get a higher bonus because he got a high price for his land? If the bonus was intended to help the tenant to buy as well as the landlord to sell, the logical thing to do was to make the bonus vary inversely with the number of years purchase obtained. But if Parliament did not sanction such a radical change, he thought it was desirable that there should be some limit to the number of years purchase on which the bonus was paid say up to twenty-seven or twenty-eight years. Under the Act of 1903 the scale of bonus came up for consideration every five years, and, therefore, it would have to be considered next year. When the matter did arise the question of the distribution and the payment of the bonus would be considered, and the Government would endeavour so to use the money available for the bonus as to promote its distribution in those parts of the country where the sales were most wanted. The parts that most wanted it on the ground of the poverty of the people were generally the last to obtain it. In the prosperous counties like Kildare and the North of Ireland tenants were anxious to take advantage of the legislation, and the landlords were anxious to sell; but in the West and the South it had been found difficult to carry out a voluntary arrangement. It was desirable that something should be done, and he hoped something would be done to alter the system. As to the question of compulsion, those who voted in favour of the principle when in opposition were not going to shrink when in power from putting it in force. The principle was in full operation now in several respects; and he did not think any great complaint had been made. A Royal Commission was appointed by the late Government to consider the case of Trinity College. It was presided over by Lord Justice Fitzgibbon, and there were two other Commissioners equally learned and influential. Some of their recommendations were distinctly in favour of compulsory purchase, in order to get rid of the tangle of dual ownership. If the principle was applied in that case, what arguments could there be against extending it to other cases also? If ever there was a case in which the principle should be applied, it was to those congested districts in the West of Ireland where the holdings were so small that people could not possibly live upon them, and where immediately adjoining them were large ranches of grazing land fit for distribution. As regarded compulsion it had been pointed out that it was a question of money. The Government could not commit itself to an immediate application of the principle of compulsion without providing the means. Money must be provided by the Treasury, and the machinery, troublesome and difficult, must also be provided by Parliament. So far as the present year was concerned, if this Bill was fortunate enough to pass, the question of the compulsion as regarded direct sales certainly could not be entertained. He thought all were agreed that the sales actually agreed upon under the Land Commission ought to be completed before they applied the principle to other cases. As regarded untenanted lands in congested districts the case was quite different. A Royal Commission was now sitting with reference to that matter, and, he hoped, would shortly publish its Report. If that Report recommended the adop- tion of compulsion as the necessary means of getting possession of a sufficient amount of land to carry out the objects which the Commission recommended, the Government would not hesitate to adopt their recommendations and put them in force as far as they could possibly do so. But pending the Report of the Commission he did not suppose that any hon. Member would expect the Government to pledge themselves to adopt the principle even as regarded this matter. In reference to sporting rights, he thought there was a great deal to be said for the view that they should in all cases be conveyed with the land to the purchasing tenant. The reservation of sporting rights was apt to cause friction and annoyance, and he did not see why they should be dealt with differently from other rights attaching to the land. He thought that the good relations between the farmer landlord and the farmer tenant would be better promoted by the landlord letting the sporting rights go to the tenant. Already in some cases, in the county of Waterford, a good deal of trouble and annoyance had been caused by the reservation of the sporting rights. It was all a question of price, and the price should be arranged on the assumption that all rights should pass. As to minerals, he did not understand on what principle the Act of 1903 provided that a man who had sold his property out and out and had been paid full value should, perhaps twenty years hence, on the discovery of coal or other minerals under the land, be entitled to 25 per cent. of the gross profits of the working of those minerals. What claim had he to the 25 per cent? He had sold the land on the assumption that the mineral rights were of no value. Surely if there was a loss to the ratepayers in Ireland through the financing of the Land Act the proceeds of any minerals subsequently discovered ought to be applied towards that rather than to the former owner. It seemed to him a reasonable thing that such rights should be used not for the benefit of the former owner but for the benefit of the public generally. Of course existing rights must not be interfered with, but future rights ought to be vested in the Land Commission for the purpose of financing the Act. With reference to the amendment of the Land Law Acts and the rent-fixing portions of the Bill, the question of improvements was at the very root of the Irish land question, and they were bound to see that in the fixing of rents as well as in the sales of property every tenant secured the full benefit of all improvements made by him or by his predecessor. In no case should the rent be fixed on improvements made by the tenant, and the tenant be compelled to purchase improvements which he had himself made. Power should be given to the Commissioners to investigate each case within or outside the zones to see whether the rent was fair and reasonable, and whether the improvements on the holding had been included in the purchase price or not. Another provision which was harmless and against which not a word had been said, was that which provided that tenants who had lost the status of present tenants by eviction, should for the future be treated as present tenants and enabled to have fair rents fixed. He could see no reasonable objection to that. He did not suppose there were many such cases—[An HON. MEMBER: There are between 50,000 and 60,000 of them]—but whether many or few, he saw no reason why a man who was a present tenant and who forfeited that position owing to default in paying rent—for which he might not have been to blame—should not be allowed to have a fair rent fixed, and the purchase price fixed on the fair rent. It was also proposed to repeal Section 7 of the Act, but that was not a matter upon which he thought he ought to make any pronouncement of policy at that moment. The House was fully engaged, and he feared the chances of the Bill passing this session were very slight; but the Government would support the Second Heading, because they approved the principle contained in the Bill, and because, in their opinion, it not only did not contradict, but carried out, the intentions of the Legislature in passing the Act of 1903, and would promote the wellbeing of Ireland in the future.

MR. JAMES CAMPBELL (Dublin University)

said it would be a very unwelcome and startling piece of news to the English taxpayer to find to-morrow morning, when he read his paper, that the arrangement contained in the Land Purchase Act of 1903, which he was led to believe was to be a final settlement of the difficult and complicated question of land purchase in Ireland, and on the faith of, which he consented to lend £100,000,000 to Ireland and to give as a; free gift £12,000,000, was to be no final settlement after all, but an instalment leading up to the larger policy of confiscation and compulsion. It was certainly not a little startling that, within four years of the passage of the Land Purchase Act as the result of what was, at any rate, believed to be a concensus of opinion on all sides of the House that it contained within it the materials for an ultimate and final settlement of the question, those who took part in that arrangement should be told, not merely by hon. Members below the gangway from Ireland, but also from the lips of the representative of His Majesty's Government, that practically the settlement arrived at in 1903 was now to be torn up and treated as waste paper. He had gone through every section of this Bill, and he ventured to say that there was not one but bore upon it the stamp of injustice and confiscation. What were the main and essential elements of the arrangement or compromise, arrived at in 1903, with the approval and almost the applause of all sections of the House? The essential elements of the Land Purchase Act of 1903 were, first the absence of compulsion, secondly, the system of zones, and thirdly, the bonus. These three things were the essential and material conditions for the successful passing of that measure, and they were all the special subject of attack in the present Bill—an attack made with the approval of his right hon. friend opposite. Yet the right hon. Gentleman had told them that the effect of this Bill, the express object of which was to disrupt and disturb everything which was arranged, and as they thought concluded, in 1903, would be simply to supplement and carry out the policy of the Land Act of 1903. What was the purpose of the zones? In the first place, it was to do away with the necessity for all that complicated legal investigation and judicial decision which had been found to clog to such an extent the operation of the ordinary rent fixing Acts passed prior to 1903, and the hon. Member for Waterford, standing up in his place to comment on the Land Purchase Act, had stated that in his opinion the great merit of the proposal was that the tribunal or body of gentlemen to whom the duties under the Act were to be entrusted were to have no judicial authority, but were to be non-judicial and purely administrative. Unfortunately, that was not the view these gentlemen took of their own functions, and their desire to acquire judicial discretion and power for themselves resulted in a majority of the Estates Commissioners from the first displaying a most active and patent hostility to the zones. By the zones, it was proposed to get rid, by a sort of automatic system based upon fair and reasonable lines, of the necessity for all these judicial investigations. How was it proposed to do that? First of all, he would ask hon. Members opposite to recollect, what perhaps had been forgotten, that the system of the zones applied only to the purchasing tenants who had had judicial rents fixed, and the proposal was that, in the case of tenants who had had their rents fixed on only one occasion, in order that the purchase should go through automatically and without inspection, they should get a further reduction of at least 20 per cent. on their judicial rent. In other words, every tenant coming under Section 1 of the Land Purchase Act of 1903 if he was a first term tenant was to get at least 40 per cent. off his rackrent, 20 per cent. being taken off by the fixing of the first term, and 20 per cent. under the Act of 1903. That was not a bad bargain for a purchasing tenant, because he was to start in the first place with an immediate reduction on his original rent of 40 per cent. and after a certain period of time the rent, which took the shape of an annuity, would cease altogether. But more than that, what was to be the bargain in the case of the second term tenant, whose purchase was to pass through automatically under Section 1 of the Act? Speaking in round numbers, practically the assumption was that by the first fixing of the rent the tenant got a reduction of 20 per cent., and that he got a somewhat similar reduction on the second term. Therefore, if he was a second term tenant, coming in under the zone, he was to get a further reduction of at least 10 per cent. on his rent, so that his original rent was to be reduced by 50 per cent. and the rent was to be changed at that figure into an annuity which was to cease after a certain number of years. It was suggested that all that was done in the interests of the landlord. It was done in the interests of both landlord and tenant. It was part of the arrangement. He would not say that that arrangement was assented to by hon. Gentlemen below the Gangway, because he agreed that the hon. Member for East Mayo was a bitter opponent of the zone system from the first, but on the part of hon. Gentlemen opposite there was no protest of any sort or kind raised against the system incorporated in the first section of the Act of 1903. What was the result of that? The system had been attacked because by virtue of it the landlords had got a certain number of years purchase in excess of those which prevailed before the Act of 1903 was passed. Everybody who knew anything about Ireland was aware of the real cause and the true explanation of that state of things. It was given in the most graphic way in which it could be given by the hon. and learned Member for Waterford himself, who in season and out of season had with conspicuous courage, loyalty, and honour, stood by what he believed to be the spirit of the Land Conference and the spirit manifested by all Parties in the House when they passed the Act of 1903. In addressing a meeting in county Wicklow, in that year, the hon. and learned Gentleman said that he met a farmer who said to him— ''We farmers do not think we shall gain much by this Land Purchase Act of yours, because we have got to give twenty-two or twenty-three years purchase, when we could under the Ashbourne Acts have purchased for eighteen years. The hon. and learned Gentlemen said he asked the farmer why he did not purchase under the Ashbourne Acts, and the farmer said— My landlord would not sell. That was the real explanation of the matter, and as the hon. Gentleman the Member for South Tyrone—whom he was glad to welcome back to the House after his severe illness and who always contributed so effectively to debate—had pointed out, the main reason why land purchase before the Act had almost ceased in Ireland was that the landlords were not willing to sell at the prevalent prices. The hon. Member had said that the bankrupt estates could be got rid of by eighteen years purchase, as could also the estates of landlords who had only a small property in Ireland as compared with large estates elsewhere and who, being wealthy, wanted to get out of the country. That class of landlord did not care whether it was seventeen, eighteen, or nineteen years purchase, but now those two sets of landlords had been exhausted. They had got rid of the bankrupt landlords and the landlords who were prepared to sacrifice their property with a view of getting out of the country, and they now had to deal with the men who wanted to get a fair price for their property. Therefore the prices prevalent before the Act of 1903 could no longer be relied on, and some fresh inducement was required to bring the property of the remaining landlords into the market. It was with that express view and object that the system of bonus was devised and introduced into the Irish purchase legislation—in order to give to the solvent landlord who hitherto had been unwilling to sell at the prevalent prices an inducement to part with his property. Yet the hon. Member for East Mayo had in that debate denounced the bonus, because, forsooth, it had gone into the pockets of solvent landlords.


said he did not denounce the bonus, but he denounced the distribution of it.


said that was precisely the point he was making. The hon. Member denounced the bonus because it went into the pockets of the landlords—into the pockets of the Duke of Leinster, and other persons who the hon. Gentleman said had no right or claim to it. But it was impossible to please the hon. Member. "Hit high or hit low," he never wag satisfied. He said there was no reason why the Duke of Leinster should have this money, because he was a wealthy man, but then he complained in regard to the case of a landlord who had parted with his property, and had had to leave the country with a sum which was only capable of producing £100 a year. There was no satisfying him, and the result was that the Act of 1903 was to be torn into shreds. When hon. Gentlemen below the Gangway brought in Bills he always looked carefully into them to see whether there was anything with which he could agree, and he did not in this Bill find anything. There was one point made by the hon. Member for East Mayo which was a grave and serious matter, but which was unfortunately not in this Bill. He referred to the claim made by the Treasury in certain districts of Ireland in regard to the alleged losses on land stock. Speaking from his recollection of the Act of 1903, the hon. Member said he believed that to be a breach of faith. So far as he himself understood the financial provisions of that Act, however, it amounted to this, that the county councils were only to be responsible for the burden when they neglected to obtain these instalments. He did not think the Act made the county council liable to make good the loss sustained in floating land stock. The most extraordinary feature of this Bill was that for the first time in Irish legislation it introduced coercion with regard to the Irish tenant. He did not know if hon. Members had read the Bill, but he thought it would come as a surprise to them that by one section of it power was taken to buy the holding of a tenant who did not live on it. As everyone knew, in Ireland many farmers lived in the villages, and any tenant who lived in a village or town and hold a farm in the vicinity might have that farm under the compulsory powers of this Bill purchased compulsorily by the Estates Commissioners. [NATIONALIST cries of "No."] By one section power was to be conferred on the Land Commission compulsorily to purchase the holding of any tenant who did not live on it.


said the hon. Member was quite wrong.


assured the hon. Member for East Mayo that he was absolutely right.


You should read the Bill.


said he proposed to do so. Clause 3, Section 1, provided that the Land Commission should have power, for the purpose of providing parcels of land, to purchase "any untenanted land not being land purchased under the Land Purchase Acts, or may purchase any tenanted land on which the tenant does not actually reside." [NATIONALIST cries of "Go on."] There was nothing further in the section.


said the hon. Member was absolutely wrong. The Bill was perfectly clear—"or may purchase any tenanted land on which the tenant does not actually reside, or which does not adjoin, or is not ordinarily used in conjunction with the holding on which he so resides, and on which a fair rent cannot be fixed under the Land Law Acts."


said he failed to see the force of the interruption. His point remained exactly where it was before the interruption. [Cries of "No."] He had no hope of reaching the intelligence of some hon. Gentlemen, but there were some who had some intelligence and anyone who understood the King's English would see at once that two cases were dealt with—first, where the tenant did not live on the holding, and, secondly, where he had another holding which was not used in conjunction with the one on which he lived. Those were the two cases, and in either of them power was given to the Land Commission to buy it up against the tenant's will. But coercion was also applied in respect to sporting rights. If a tenant purchased to-day and left to the landlord the sporting rights the landlord gave something more. The Bill proposed that in every case, whether he liked it or not, the tenant should be compelled to take over the sporting rights, the only reservation being that he could reserve them to the landlord for the landlord's life. Fine preservers of game the tenants would be! Did hon. Gentlemen think in the case of a tenant with four or five acres, on which he lived when he was not away at work in the fields of England or elsewhere, that that tenant would ever become a preserver of game? If that section was carried there would be an end to game preservation in Ireland. As to the bonus, the Bill contained the provision that the smaller the purchase price the greater the bonus, and there was no provision to protect the remainder man from this manifest bribe. A more unjust or dishonest suggestion it would be inpossible to conceive. Under the Act of 1903 any dispute as to casements or boundaries was by agreement to be referred to the Land Commission. The Bill proposed to take away that voluntary jurisdiction and to make it obligatory upon any party to a dispute to submit it to the Commission, if any one person applied for a hearing; and that was proposed by the very same hon. Gentleman who in 1903 hailed the Act of that year with such delight because it created a non-judicial body with nothing but administrative functions. The real cause of the late delay in land purchase was not so much a want of money as the want of sufficient staff. Another reason was that they had been devoting themselves with great diligence to the restoration of evicted tenants. He did not quarrel with that, except that it had been overdone The hon. Member for East Mayo in 1903 said there were only about 800 families of evicted tenants, and he thought about 400 of those cases had been already disposed of. He believed that to-day there were over 5,000 or 6,000 applications from evicted tenants pending before the Commissioners, and the Estates Commissioners had in reality turned themselves into a manufactory of evicted tenants. The thing had become an intolerable abuse. The introduction of this Bill was to be attributed to the very unhappy and mischievous speech which the Chief Secretary made in reference to the Marquis of Clanricarde.


Not at all.


said that when the right hon. Gentleman referred in a jaunty and flippant way to the expropriation of landlords he was afraid he did not realise how dangerous it was to trifle in that way with landlords in Ireland. He opposed the Bill on the substantial ground that it was a distinct violation and rupture of the treaty supposed to have been arrived at on the question between all parties in 1903.


said be had no objection whatever to being lectured by the right hon. Gentleman, but if he might make a suggestion to him he would beg of him not to apply to his most serious observations, made with the full sense of responsibility, the expressions jaunty and light-hearted, of which he was beginning to get a little tired. He spoke perfectly seriously, and he did not think that those terms should be applied. Neither did he ever suggest the expropriation of Lord Clanricade, or that he should be deprived of the emoluments he obtained from his estate. All that he suggested—and the suggestion had been made by men of greater weight than himself—was that sometimes in the history of a country they might come across landlords whose property might very well be vested in the hands of a committee, who would exercise all the rights of ownership in a way more consonant with the general feeling of the country than Lord Clanricarde had hitherto exhibited. That was not expropriation.


It is very like it.


Not at all. If the right hon. Gentleman mismanaged an estate which brought him in £16,000 a year, and he (Mr. Birrell) took it and brought in £17,000 a year, what wrong did he suffer? On the contrary, it was very much better to substitute a sensible man than to retain a foolish one. It was with very much trepidation that for the first time in his life he plunged into the jungle of the Irish Land Law. When he had to cross the dangerous bogs of the finance of the Act of 1903 he wished his lot were cast in pleasanter places. He thought anybody looking at this particular measure would agree that the three principal provisions in it were those relating to the zones, to the extension of the principle of compulsory purchase, and to the bonus. Upon those points he did certainly protest very strongly against the notion that it was not open to any member of that House to introduce measures to amend the Act of 1903. It had been apparent for some time, and he ventured to say there was not a single intelligent man in Ireland or elsewhere conversant with the working of the Act who was not thoroughly convinced that it did need, and would benefit by, some amendment. Certainly the gentlemen representing the great body of Irish opinion and the tenants of Ireland, who were intended to be benefited by that Act, were at liberty to attempt its amendment, and any Government to whom they presented the measure was bound to consider whether or not it contained suggestions which ought to be thoroughly investigated. He was not in Parliament when the Act was passed, but he was bound to say that, if he had been in Parliament he would have known nothing more about the zones than the present occupants of the smoking-room. There was no Imperial law which required people to take an interest in any question which did not concern them, and he had never heard of a measure of the importance of this Act which had received so little notice either from the public or from the ordinary Members of the House. He confessed that until he became Chief Secretary he did not know what zones were. It was a fantastic term not found in the Act of Parliament; only in the rubric. Nobody would, however, deny that the object of zones was, in the first instance, to create areas of free bargain between the landlord and tenant, in which the Treasury was left out of account; and inspection of the property was not required to ascertain the goodness of the security and the equitableness of the bargain, unless the tenant could show that he was under duress. An arrangement of that kind in a matter which involved the whole value of the land of Ireland—a great deal more than £100,000,000—showed that the complaisance of the Treasury in those days was at a very high-water mark. He did not think anyone would deny that the zones system had increased the price which the landlord had obtained. It had tended to fix the price at an amount equal to twenty-four and a half years purchase. That was a greater number of years purchase than was contemplated by the landlords themselves. He did not blame anybody; it was one of the results which had followed from establishing this arbitrary system of zones. He thought, therefore, they might well review the question of zones; that they required some modification. With regard to compulsion, he had pledged himself to apply to that House during this session it might be for the necessary powers to enable him to restore evicted tenants. He was still enthusiastic enough to believe that it was a noble work to attempt to restore evicted tenants to their holdings. It was not the case that whore they had an evicted tenant they immediately got a holding. The investigations that were going on had resulted in the exclusion of a large number of persons who had made this claim. The object of the Government was that the evicted tenants, be their number great or small, after investigation, should be restored either to their original holding or to some other land. If for that purpose compulsory powers were necessary, they would be applied for, and they would, he did not doubt, be granted by that House. The general question of compulsion all round brought him to the question of the finance of the Act, and he spoke, subject to the Treasury, with some natural anxiety on the subject. He did not think he would be doing his duty if he did not call attention to the present grave position of the financial obligations of the country. Under the provisions of the Acts the cost of flotation was thrown, in the first instance, upon the Irish development grant, and, secondly, upon the guarantee fund. The Act of 1903 gave the landlords cash instead of stock, and enlarged the number of years which the tenants had for repayment from forty-eight to sixty-eight and a half. The result, he thought, was that when they went to the market to obtain the money necessary to supply the wants of the landlords and the tenants they had to submit to a loss of something like 12 per cent., which on £1,000,000 spread over sixty-eight and a half years amounted to a very considerable sum. They had thrown upon the Irish development grant a loss of £70,000 a year. It was quite certain that by the time they had obtained £10,000,000 or £15,000,000 of money, in order to carry out this system, the Irish development grant would be bankrupt and exhausted. That being gone, they would have to fall back on the guarantee fund, and in a very short time the loss on the flotation of loans necessary to carry out land purchase would have to be borne by the rate-payers of Ireland. Then there was the other loss, not by flotation but by certain banking operations, amounting in two years to £72,000. A man who bought on the 1st March obtained on the 1st July the whole of the percentage from the previous January. That was one of the transactions which had contributed to this loss. The other two might be described as banking losses occasioned by the dealings between the National Debt Commissioners and the Treasury. But they found they would continue. There was no reason to suppose they would stop, and those also had to be borne by the county council rates. The whole scheme of land purchase under the Act of 1903 would most certainly be endangered if the ratepayers of Ireland found that they had to pay heavy contributions. That was a matter that would have to be gone into. He mentioned that because it lay at the bottom of the whole case of general compulsory powers. He was afraid they could serve no useful purpose by obtaining compulsory powers to buy up the whole of the land of Ireland when they had not got the means—the present machinery having broken down—of obtaining the necessary funds. He could not contemplate a proposal which would increase the demand for advances from £10,000,000 to £40,000,000, right up to the £160,000,000 that would be required, until they had reviewed the whole question of the finance of the Act of 1903. He did not wish to speak in any alarmist spirit, or to disturb the equanimity of the people in Ireland, but they were face to face with a great and grievous financial difficulty in this matter, and it would be absurd, rash, and improper on his part to hold out any hope of his being able, by any proposals such as those contained in this Bill, to increase the area of this work. Compulsion, no doubt, would have to come. The Act acknowledged that it must come, and the Government had acknowledged that it must come in the case of evicted tenants. If the Congested Districts Commission recommended compulsion, the Government would accept the recommendations of that Commission if they commended themselves to their minds. All that they could do; but he was afraid that was all they could do at present. The Government were willing to agree to the Second Reading of this Bill because they found many parts of it capable of approval. Many of its clauses they were perfectly ready to adopt, and they were quite prepared to consider the Bill in a proper spirit. When they would be able to deal with the matter themselves he was unable to say; but, in his opinion, Parliament would fail in its responsibility if it did not express its intention of dealing at an early date with the whole question.


said there was a reply to the two main parts of the right hon. Gentleman's speech. The first was his contention that his Party was at liberty to make the alteration contemplated by this Bill, and the second was his reference to the question of finance. The Act of 1903 was not hastily arrived at. They worked at it for over two

years before it was presented to the House. The Act had naturally failed in certain directions, but if they accepted this proposal for remedying that failure, they would run themselves into a greater difficulty which the Act had been drawn to avoid. He would almost lay it down that they could not revert from the cash basis of the Irish Land Act. He thought all that had happened since the Act was passed proved that the late Government were right.

And, it being Five of the clock, Mr. SPEAKER proceeded to interrupt the Business.

Whereupon Mr. JOHN REDMOND rose in his place, and claimed to move, "That the Question be now put."

Question put, "That the Question be now put."

The House divided:—Ayes, 209; Noes, 62. (Division List No. 136.)

Abraham, William (Cork, N. E.) Bryce, J. Annan Dolan, Charles Joseph
Adkins, W. Ryland D. Burke, E. Haviland Duckworth, James
Ainsworth, John Stirling Burns, Rt. Hon. John Duncan, C. (Barrow-in-Furness
Alden, Percy Burt, Rt. Hon. Thomas Dunn, A. Edward (Camborne)
Ambrose, Robert Byles, William Pollard Edwards, Clement (Denbigh)
Armstrong, W. G. Heaton Cairns, Thomas Elibank, Master of
Ashton, Thomas Gair Cameron, Robert Erskine, David C.
Baker, Joseph A. (Finsbury, E.) Cheetham, John Frederick Esslemont. George Birnie
Balfour, Robert (Lanark) Cherry, Rt. Hon. R. R. Evans, Samuel T.
Baring, Godfrey (Isle of Wight Churchill, Winston Spencer Everett, R. Lacey
Barnard, E. B. Clancy, John Joseph Faber, G. H. (Boston)
Barnes, G. N. Clarke, C. Goddard Farrell, James Patrick
Barran, Rowland Hirst Cleland, J. W. Fenwick, Charles
Barry, E. (Cork, S.) Cobbold, Felix Thornley Ferguson, R. C. Munro
Barry, Redmond J. (Tyro re, N.) Cogan, Denis J. Ffrench, Peter
Beale, W. P. Collins, Stephen (Lambeth) Field, William
Benn, Sir J. Williams (Devonp'rt Collins, Sir Wm. J. (S. Pancras. W Fiennes, Hon. Eustace
Benn, W. (T'w 'r Hamlets, S. Geo. Condon, Thomas Joseph Findlay, Alexander
Berridge, T. H. D. Corbett, CH (Sussex. E. Grinst'd Flavin, Michael Joseph
Bethell, T. R. (Essex, Maldon) Craig, Herbert J. (Tynemouth) Flynn, James Christopher
Billson, Alfred Crean, Eugene Foster, Rt. Hon. Sir Walter
Birrell, Rt. Hon. Augustine Cremer, William Randal Fowler, Rt. Hon. Sir Henry
Blake, Edward Crooks, William Gilhooly, James
Boland, John Crosfield, A. H. Ginnell, L.
Bowerman, C. W. Davies, Timothy (Fulham) Gladstone, Rt. Hn. Herbert John
Brace, William Delany, William Glendinning, R. G.
Branch, James Devlin, Joseph Gooch, George Peabody
Brunner, J. F. L. (Lanes., Leigh) Dewar, John A. (Inverness-sh.) Grant, Corrie
Brunner, Rt Hn Sir J.T (Cheshire Dillon, John Gulland, John W.
Gurdon, Sir W. Brampton M'Killop, W. Roberts, Charles H. (Lincoln)
Gwynn, Stephen Lucius M'Laren, H. D. (Stafford, W.) Roberts, G. H. (Norwich)
Halpin, J. Maddison, Frederick Robertson, J. M. (Tyneside)
Harmsworth, Cecil B. (Wore'r Marnham, F. J. Roche, John (Galway, East)
Harrington, Timothy Masterman, C. F. G. Rogers, F. E. Newman
Hart-Davies, T. Meagher, Michael Rowlands, J.
Haslam, Lewis (Monmouth) Meehan, Patrick A. Russell, T. W.
Hayden, John Patrick Menzies, Walter Rutherford, V. H. (Brentford)
Hazleton, Richard Montagu, E. S. Samuel, Herbert L. (Cleveland)
Hedges, A. Paget Mooney, J. J. Schwann, C. Duncan (Hyde)
Henderson, Arthur (Durham) Morgan, J. Lloyd (Carmarthen Scott, A. H. (Ashton under Lyne
Henry, Charles S. Muruaghan, George Seddon, J.
Higham, John Sharp Murphy, John Sheehan, Daniel Daniel
Hogan, Michael Murray, James Sheehy, David
Howard, Hon. Geoffrey Norton, Capt. Cecil William Sherwall, Arthur James
Illingworth, Percy H. Nugent, Sir Walter Richard Shipman, Dr. John G.
Jackson, R. S. Nuttall, Harry Smyth, Thomas F. (Leitrim, S.
Jones, Leif (Appleby) O'Brien, Kendal (Tipperary Mid Stewart, Halley (Greenock)
Jones, William (Carnarvonshire O'Brien, Patrick (Kilkenny) Straus, B. S. (Mile End)
Jowett, F. W. O'Connor, John (Kildare, N.) Taylor, Theodore C. (Radcliffe)
Joyce, .Michael O'Doherty, Philip Tennant, H. J. (Berwickshire)
Kekewich, Sir George O'Donnell, T. (Kerry. W.) Thomas, David Alfred (Merthyr
Kennedy, Vincent Paul O'Dowd, John Toulmin, George
Kettle, Thomas Michael O'Grady, J. Ure, Alexander
Kilbride, Denis O' Hare, Patrick Verney, F. W.
Kincaid-Smith, Captain O'Malley, William Walters, John Tudor
Lamb, Ernest H. (Rochester) O'Mara, James Ward, John (Stoke upon Trent
Lambert, George O'Shaughnessy, P. J. Waring, Walter
Lamont, Norman O'Shee, James John Wason, Eugene (Clackmannan)
Law, Hugh A. (Donegal, W.) Parker, James (Halifax) Wason, John Cathcart (Orkney)
Lea, Hugh Cecil (St. Pancras, R Pease, J. A. (Saffron Walden) White, George (Norfolk)
Lundon, W. Philipps, J. Wynford (Pembroke White, Luke (York, E.R.)
Lupton, Arnold Philipps, Owen C. (Pembroke) White, Patrick (Meath, North
Lyell, Charles Henry Pollard, Dr. Whitehead, Rowland
Macdonald, J. M. (Falkirk B'ghs Power, Patrick Joseph Whittaker, Sir Thomas Palmer
Macnamara, Dr. Thomas J. Radford, G. H. Wiles, Thomas
MacVeagh, Jeremiah (Down, S. Rainy, A. Rolland Williams, J. (Glamorgan)
MacVeagh, Charles (Donegal, E.) Rea, Waller Russell (Scarboro' Wilson, P. W. (St. Pancras. S.)
M'Callum, John M. Reddy, M.
M'Crae, George Redmond, John E. (Waterford TELLERS FOR THE AYES—Sir
M'Hugh, Patrick A. Redmond, William (Clare) Thomas Esmonde and Captain Donelan.
M'Kean, John Rickett, J. Compton
Acland-Hood, Rt Hn Sir Alex. F. Cross, Alexander Mildmay, Francis Bingham
Arnold-Forster, Rt. Hn. Hugh O. Dixon-Hartland, Sir Fred Dixon Nield, Herbert
Balcarres, Lord Doughty, Sir George O'Neill, Hon. Robert Torrens
Banbury, Sir Frederick George Fardell, Sir T. George Powell, Sir Francis Sharp
Banner, John S. Harmood Fell, Arthur Rawlinson, John Frederick Peel
Beckett, Hon. Gervase Fetherstonhaugh, Godfrey Roberts, S. (Sheffield, Ecclesall
Bignold, Sir Arthur Finch, Rt. Hop. George H. Rothschild, Hon. Lionel Walter
Boyle, Sir Edward Fletcher, J. S. Sandys, Lieut.-Col. Thos. Myles
Butcher, Samuel Henry Forster, Henry William Smith, Abel H. (Hertford, East)
Campbell, Rt. Hon. J. H. M. Gardner, Ernest(Berks, East) Stanley, Hon. Arthur (Ormskirk
Carlile, E. Hildred Hamilton, Marquess of Talbot, Lord E. (Chichester)
Cavendish, Rt. Hon. Victor C.W. Harrison-Broadley, H. B. Turnour, Viscount
Cecil, Evelyn (Aston Manor) Hill, Sir Clement (Shrewsbury) Vincent, Col. Sir C. E. Howard
Cecil, Lord John P. Joicey Hunt, Rowland Walrond, Hon. Lionel
Cecil, Lord R. (Marylebone, E.) Kimber, Sir Henry Wolff, Gustav Wilhelm
Channing, Sir Francis Allston Lambton, Hon. Frederick Wm. Wyndham, Rt. Hon. George
Cochrane, Hon. Thos. H. A. E. Lane-Fox, G. R. Younger, George
Corbett, A. Cameron (Glasgow) Liddell, Henry
Corbett, T. L. (Down, North) Long, Rt. Hn. Walter (Dublin. S. TELLERS FOR THE NOES—
Courthope, G. Loyd Lonsdale, John Brownlee Viscount Dalrymple and Captain Hervey.
Craig, Charles Curtis(Antrim, S. Lyttelton, Rt. Hon. Alfred
Craig, Captain James(Down, E.) M'Calmont, Colonel James

Question put accordingly.

The House divided:—Ayes, 208; Noes, 60. (Division List No. 137.)

Abraham, William (Cork, N. E.) Esslemont, George Birnie Masterman, C. F. G.
Adkins, W. Ryland D. Evans, Samuel T. Meagher, Michael
Ainsworth, John Stirling Everett, R. Lacey Meehan, Patrick A.
Alden, Percy Faber, G. H. (Boston) Menzies, Walter
Ambrose, Robert Farrell, James Patrick Micklem, Nathaniel
Armstrong, W. C. Heaton Fenwick, Charles Montagu, E. S.
Ashton, Thomas Gair Ferguson, R. C. Munro Mooney, J. J.
Baker, Joseph A. (Finsbury, E.) Ffrench, Peter Morgan, .J. Lloyd (Carmarthen)
Balfour, Robert (Lanark) Field, William Murnaghan, George
Baring, Godfrey (Isle of Wight) Fiennes, Hon. Eustace Murphy, John
Barnard, E. B. Findlay, Alexander Murray, James
Barnes, G. N. Flavin, Michael Joseph Norton, Capt. Cecil William
Barran, Rowland Hirst Flynn, James Christopher Nugent, Sir Walter Richard
Barry, E. (Cork, S.) Foster, Rt. Hon. Sir Walter Nuttall, Harry
Barry, Redmond J. (Tyrone, N.) Gilhooly, James O' Brien, Kendal (Tipperary Mid
Beale, W. P. Ginnell, L. O'Brien, Patrick (Kilkenny)
Benn, Sir J. Williams(Devonp'rt Gladstone, Rt. Hn Herbert John O'Connor, John (Kildare, N.)
Benn, W. (T'w'r Hamlets, S. Geo. Glendinning, R. G. O'Doherty, Philip
Berridge, T. H. D. Gooch, George Peabody O'Donnell, T. (Kerry, W.)
Bethell, T. R. (Essex, Maldon) Grant, Corrie O'Dowd, John
Billson, Alfred Gulland, John W. O'Grady. J.
Birrell, Rt. Hon. Augustine Gurdon, Sir W. Brampton O'Hare, Patrick
Blake, Edward Gwynn, Stephen Lucius O'Malley, William
Boland, John Halpin, J. O'Mara, James
Bowerman, C. W. Harmsworth, Cecil B. (Worc'r) O'Shaughnessy, P. J.
Brace, William Harrington, Timothy O'Shee, James John
Branch, James Hart-Davies, T. Parker, James (Halifax)
Brunner, J. F. L. (Lanes., Leigh) Haslam, Lewis (Monmouth) Pease, J. A. (Saffron Walden)
Brunner, Rt Hn. Sir J T. (Cheshire Hayden, John Patrick Philipps, J. Wynford (Pembroke
Bryce, J. Annan Hazleton, Richard Philipps, Owen C. (Pembroke)
Burke, E. Haviland Hedges, A. Paget Pollard, Dr.
Burns, Rt. Hon. John Henderson, Arthur (Durham) Power, Patrick Joseph
Burt, Rt. Hon. Thomas Henry, Charles S. Radford, G. H.
Byles, William Pollard Higham, John Sharp Rainy, A. Holland
Cairns, Thomas Hogan, Michael Rea, Walter Russell (Scarboro'
Cameron, Robert Howard, Hon. Geoffrey Reddy, M.
Channing, Sir Francis Allston Illingworth, Percy H. Redmond, John E. (Waterford)
Cheetham, John Frederick Jackson, R. S. Redmond, William (Clare)
Cherry, Rt. Hon. R. R. Jones, Leif (Appleby) Rickett, J. Compton
Churchill, Winston Churchill Jones, William (Carnarvonshire Roberts, Charles H. (Lincoln)
Clancy, John Joseph Jowett, F. W. Roberts, O. H. (Norwich)
Clarke, C. Goddard Joyce, Michael Robertson, J. M. (Tyneside)
Cleland, J. W. Kekewich, Sir George Roche, John (Galway, East)
Cobbold, Felix Thornley Kennedy, Vincent Paul Rogers, F. E. Newman
Cogan, Denis J. Kettle, Thomas Michael Rowlands. J.
Collins, Stephen (Lambeth) Kilbride, Denis Russell, T. W.
Collins, Sir Wm. J. (S. Pancras, W Kincaid-Smith, Captain Rutherford, V. H. (Brentford)
Condon, Thomas Joseph Lambert, George Samuel, Herbert L. (Cleveland)
Corbett, C. H. (Sussex, E Grinst'd Lament, Norman Schwann, C. Duncan (Hyde)
Craig, Herbert J. (Tynemouth) Law, Hugh A. (Donegal, W.) Scott, A. H. (Ashton-und.-Lyne
Crean, Eugene Lea, HughCecil (St.Pancras, E.) Seddon, J.
Cremer, William Randal Lundon, W. Sheehan, Daniel Daniel
Crooks, William Lupton, Arnold Sheehy, David
Crosfield, A. H. Lyell, Charles Henry Sherwell, Arthur James
Davies, Timothy (Fulham) Macdonald, J.M (Falkirk B'ghs) Shipman, Dr. John G.
Delany, William Macnamara, Dr. Thomas J. Smyth, Thomas F. (Leitrim, S.)
Devlin, Joseph MacVeagh, Jeremiah (Down, S. Stewart, Halley (Greenock)
Dewar, John A. (Inverness-sh. MacVeigh, Charles (Donegal, E. Straus, B. S. (Mile End)
Dillon, John M'Callum, John M. Taylor, Theodore C. (Radcliffe)
Dolan, Charles Joseph M'Crae, George Tennant, H. J. (Berwickshire)
Duckworth, James M'Hugh, Patrick A. Thomas, David Alfred(Merthyr
Duncan, C. (Barrow-in-Furness M'Kean, John Toulmin, George
Dunn, A. Edward (Camborne) M'Killop, W. Ure, Alexander
Edwards, Clement (Denbigh) M'Laren, H. D. (Stafford, W.) Verney, F. W.
Elibank, Master of Maddison, Frederick Walters, John Tudor
Erskine, David C. Marnham, F. J. Ward, John (Stoke-upon-Trent
Waring, Walter White, Patrick (Meath, North) TELLERS FOR THE AYES—Sir
Wason, Eugene (Clackmannan) Whittaker, Sir Thomas Palmer Thomas Esmonde and Captain Donclan.
Wason, John Cathcart(Orkney) Wiles, Thomas
While, George (Norfolk) Williams, J. (Glamorgan)
White, Luke (York, E.R.) Wilson, P. W. (St. Pancras, S.)
Acland-Hood,. Rt Hn Sir Alex. F. Cross, Alexander Mildmay, Francis Bingham
Arnold-Forster, Rt. Hn. Hugh O. Dalrymple, Viscount Nield, Herbert
Banbury, Sir Frederick George Dixon-Hartland, Sir Fred Dixon O'Neill, Hon. Robert Torrens
Banner, John S. Harmood Doughty, Sir George Parker, Sir Gilbert (Gravesend)
Beckett, Hon. Gervase Fardell, Sir T. George Powell, Sir Francis Sharp
Bignold, Sir Arthur Fell, Arthur Rawlinson, John Frederick Peel
Bowles, G. Stewart Fetherstonhaugh, Godfrey Roberts, S. (Sheffield, Ecclesall)
Boyle, Sir Edward Fletcher, J. S. Rothschild, Hon. Lionel Walter
Campbell, Rt. Hon. J. H. M. Gardner, Ernest (Berks, East) Sandys, Lieut.-Col. Thos. Myles
Carlile, E. Hildred Hamilton, Marquess of Smith, Abel H. (Hertford, East)
Carson, Rt. Hon. Sir Edw. H. Hervey, F. W. F (Bury S. Ed m'ds Stanley, Hon. Arthur (Ormskirk
Cavendish, Rt. Hon. Victor C. W. Hill, Sir Clement (Shrewsbury) Talbot, Lord E. (Chichester)
Cecil, Evelyn (Aston Manor) Hunt, Rowland Turnour, Viscount
Cecil, Lord John P. Joicey- Kimber, Sir Henry Vincent, Col. Sir C. E. Howard
Cecil, Lord R. (Marylebone, E.) Lambton, Hon. Frederick Wm. Walrond, Hon. Lionel
Cochrane, Hon. Thos. H. A. E. Lane-Fox, G. R. Wolff, Gustav Wilhelm
Corbett, A. Cameron (Glasgow) Liddell, Henry Wyndham, Rt. Hon. George
Corbett, T. L. (Down, North) Long, Rt. Hn. Walter (Dublin, S. Younger, George
Courthope, G. Loyd Lonsdale, John Brownlee
Craig, Charles Curtis(Antrim, S. Lyttelton, Rt. Hon. Alfred TELLERS FOR THE NOES—Mr.
Craig, Capt. James (Down, E.) M'Calmont, Colonel James Forster and Lord Balcarres.

Bill read a second time.

Motion made, and Question put, "That the Bill be committed to a, Com-

mittee of the Whole House." — (Mr. Wyndham.)

The House divided:—Ayes, 61; Noes, 184. (Division List No. 138.)

Acland-Hood, Rt Hn Sir Alex. F. Dalrymple, Viscount Morgan, J. Lloyd (Carmarthen
Banbury, Sir Frederick George Dixon-Hartland, Sir Fred Dixon Nield, Herbert
Banner, John S. Harmood Doughty, Sir George O'Neill, Hon. Robert Torrens
Barran, Rowland Hirst Fardell, Sir T. George Parker, Sir Gilbert (Gravesend)
Beckett, Hon. Gervase Fell, Arthur Powell, Sir Francis Sharp
Bignold, Sir Arthur Fetherstonhaugh, Godfrey Rawlinson, John Frederick Peel
Bowles, G. Stewart Fletcher, J. S. Roberts, S. (Sheffield, Eeclesall)
Boyle, Sir Edward Gardner, Ernest (Berks, East) Rothschild, Hon. Lionel Walter
Campbell, lit. Hon. J. H. M. Hamilton, Marquess of Sandys, Lieut.-Col Thos. Myles
Carlile, E. Hildred Hervey, F. W. F (Bury S. Edm'ds Smith, Abel H. (Hertford, East)
Carson, Rt. Hon. Sir Edw. H. Hill, Sir Clement (Shrewsbury) Stanley, Hon. Arthur (Ormskirk
Cavendish, Rt. Hon. Victor C. W. Hunt, Rowland Talbot, Lord E. (Chichester)
Cecil, Evelyn (Aston Manor) Kimber, Sir Henry Turnour, Viscount
Cecil, Lord John P. Joicey Lambton, Hon. Frederick Wm. Vincent, Col. Sir C. E. Howard
Cecil, Lord R. (Marylebone E.) Lane-Fox, G. R. Walrond, Hon. Lionel
Cheetham John Frederick Liddell, Henry Wolff, Gustav Wilhelm
Cochrane, Hon. Thos. H. A. E. Long, Rt. Hn. Walter (Dublin. S) Wyndham, Rt. Hon. George
Corbett, A. Cameron (Glasgow) .Lonsdale, John Brownlee Younger, George
Corbett, T. L. (Down, North) Lyttelton, Rt. Hon. Alfred
Craig, Charles Curtis (Antrim, S. M'Calmont, Colonel James TELLERS FOR THE AYES—Mr.
Craig, Captain James(Down, E.) Mildmay, Colonel James Forster and Lord Balcarres
Cross, Alexander Mildmay, Francis Bingham
Abraham, William (Cork, N. E.) Ambrose, Robert Baker, Joseph A. (Finsbury, E.
Ainsworth, John Stirling Armstrong, W. C. Heaton Balfour, Robert (Lanark)
Alden, Percy Ashton, Thomas Gair Baring, Godfrey (Isle of Wight)
Barnard, E. B. Gilhooly, James O'Brien, Kendal (Tipperary Mid
Barnes, G. N. Ginnell, L. O'Brien, Patrick (Kilkenny)
Barry, E. (Cork, S.) Gladstone, Rt. Hn. Herbert John O'Connor, John (Kildare, N.)
Barry, Redmond J. (Tyrone, N.) Glendinning, R. G. O'Doherty, Philip
Beale, W. P. Gooch, George Peabody O'Donnell, T. (Kerry, W.)
Benn, Sir J. Williams (Devonp'rt Gulland, John W. O'Dowd, John
Benn, W. (T'w'r Hamlets. S. Geo. Gurdon, Sir W. Brampton O'Grady, J.
Berridge, T. H. D. Gwynn, Stephen Lucius O'Hare, Patrick
Bethell, T. R. (Essex, Maldon) Halpin, J. O'Malley, William
Billson, Alfred Harmsworth, Cecil B. (Worc'r.) O'Mara, James
Birrell, Rt. Hon. Augustine Harrington, Timothy O'Shaughnessy, P. J.
Blake, Edward Hart-Davies, T. O'Shee, James John
Boland, John Haslam, Lewis (Monmouth) Parker, James (Halifax)
Bowerman, C. W. Hayden, John Patrick Pease, J. A. (Saffron Walden)
Brace, William Hazleton, Richard Philipps, J. Wynford (Pembroke
Branch, James Hedges, A. Paget Power, Patrick Joseph
Brunner, J. F. L. (Lancs., Leigh) Henderson, Arthur (Durham) Radford, G. H.
Brunner, Rt Hn Sir JT (Cheshire Henry, Charles S. Rainy, A. Rolland
Bryce, J. Annan Higham, John Sharp Rea, Walter Russell (Scarboro'
Burke, E. Haviland Hogan, Michael Reddy, M.
Burns, Rt. Hon. John Howard, Hon. Geoffrey Redmond, John E. (Waterford)
Byles, William Pollard Jackson, R. S. Redmond, William (Clare)
Cairns, Thomas Jones, Leif (Appleby) Rickett, J. Compton
Cameron, Robert Jones, William(Carnarvonshire) Roberts, Charles H. (Lincoln)
Charming, Sir Francis Allston Joyce, Michael Roberts, G. H. (Norwich)
Cherry, Rt. Hon. R. R. Kekewich, Sir George Robertson, J. M. (Tyneside)
Churchill, Winston Spencer Kennedy, Vincent Paul Roche, John (Galway, East)
Clancy, John Joseph Kettle, Thomas Michael Rogers. F. E. Newman
Cleland, J. W. Kilbride, Denis Russell, T. W.
Cobbold, Felix Thornley Kincaid-Smith, Captain Rutherford, V. H. (Brentford)
Cogan, Denis J. Lambert, George Samuel, Herbert L. (Cleveland)
Collins, Stephen (Lambeth) Lamont, Norman Scott, A. H. (Ashton under Lyne
Condon, Thomas Joseph Law, Hugh A. (Donegal, W.) Seddon, J.
Corbett, C.H(Sussex, E. Grinst d Lea, Hugh Cecil (St. Pancras, E. Sheehan, Daniel Daniel
Craig, Herbert J. (Tynemouth) Lundon, W. Sheehy, David
Crean, Eugene Lupton, Arnold Sherwell, Arthur James
Cremer, William Randal Lyell, Charles Henry Shipman, Dr. John G.
Crooks, William Macdonald, J. M. (Falkirk Bg"hs Smyth, Thomas F. (Leitrim, S.)
Crosfield, A. H. Macnamara, Dr. Thomas J. Straus, B. S. (Mile End)
Davies, Timothy (Fulham) MacVeagh, Jeremiah (Down, S.) Taylor, Theodore C. (Radeliffe)
Delany, William MacVeigh, Charles (Donegal, E.) Tennant, H. J. (Berwickshire)
Devlin, Joseph M'Callum, John M. Thomas, David Alfred (Merthyr
Dewar, John A. (Inverness-sh. M'Crae, George Ure, Alexander
Dillon, John M'Hugh, Patrick A. Verney, F. W.
Dolan, Charles Joseph M'Kean, John Walters, John Tudor
Duckworth, James M'Killop, W. Ward, John (Stoke upon Trent
Duncan, C. (Barrow-in-Furness Maddison, Frederick Wason, Eugene (Clackmannan)
Elibank, Master of Marnham, F. J. Wagon, John Cathcart(Orkney)
Erskine, David C. Masterman, C. F. G. White, George (Norfolk)
Esslemont, George Birnie Meagher, Michael White, Luke (York, K. R.)
Everett, R. Lacey Meehan, Patrick A. White, Patrick (Meath, North)
Farrell, James Patrick Menzies, Walter Whittaker, Sir Thomas Palmer
Fenwick, Charles Micklem, Nathaniel Wiles, Thomas
Ferguson, R. C. Munro Montagu, E. S. Williams, J. (Glamorgan)
Ffrench, Peter Murnaghan, George Wilson, P. W. (St. Pancras, S.)
Field, William Murphy, John
Fiennes, Hon. Eustace Murray, James TELLERS FOR THE NOES—Sir
Findlay, Alexander Norton, Capt. Cecil William Thomas Esmonde and Captain Donclan.
Flavin, Michael Joseph Nugent, Sir Walter Richard
Flynn, James Christopher Nuttall, Harry

Bill committed to a Standing Committee.