§ MR. CREAN (Cork, S.E.)
I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland whether he is aware that it takes from three to four weeks before a reply can be got from the Public Record Office, Dublin, to applications for 1277 certified copies of Census Returns made by people whose names do not appear on local baptismal registers, and who need those Returns immediately to enable them to prove their claims for old-age pensions: whether this delay is due to insufficiency of staff; and, if so, in view of the fact that an advance fee of 2s. is paid by each applicant, thus providing for the cost of any temporary increase of staff, he will take steps to have all such certificates sent to the applicants so as to enable pension Committees to complete the claims before 1st January.
§ MR. BIRRELL
The facts are as stated in the Question. The Deputy-Keeper of the Records informs me that every effort is being made to meet the demand for evidence of age, and that a considerable temporary increase has been made in the staff of the Public Record Office for the purpose. He has no reason to doubt that all cases in which applications have been received up to the present will be dealt with before 1st January.