HC Deb 19 June 1907 vol 176 cc462-3
MR. GINNELL (Westmeath, N.)

I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland how much of the losses charged against the Westmeath County Council on account of land purchase arises in connection with Lord Longford's estate in that county; is he aware that the Estates Commissioners have, as part of the sale of that estate, passed agreements obtained by rent-office pressure at prices based upon fictitious judicial rents invented to exclude inspection, and have advanced to the vendor price and bonus ascertained by this device, and that some of the purchasers are now more embarrassed than when they were tenants; and does he intend, on the statutory rearrangement of the bonus next year, to relieve local authorities from liability for transactions of this character, of which they disapprove.


The total deduction from county Westmeath in respect of arrears of annuities was £262. The total amount of annuities payable on 1st December last by the 263 purchasers of the estate of Lord Longford was. £6,086, and the whole of this amount has been paid except an arrear in one case of £1 9s. 3d. As regards the suggestion that prices advanced in the case of this estate wore based on fictitious judicial rents, the Estates Commissioners inform me that in several cases in which the judicial rents had been fixed since the Act of 1903 was passed, they had the holdings inspected before sanctioning the advances. I am not at present in a position to make any statement in answer to the concluding part of the Question.