§ Mr. P. A. MEEHAN
asked how many Private Bills authorising the making of railways in Ireland other than those promoted by existing railway companies had been passed during the last ten years; how many Bills of a like nature were before, or had passed, the Standing Orders Committee on Private Bills this year; how many of those projected lines had been made, and how many were in course of construction; and how many of those projected lines had been promoted by speculators who had no connection with or knowledge of the districts through which the proposed lines were to run?
§ Mr. BIRRELL
I am informed that eight Private Bills authorising the con- 1658 struction of new railways in Ireland (other than Bills promoted by existing railway companies) have been passed during the last ten years. So far as the Board of Trade are aware one of these lines (the Strabane and Letterkenny Railway) has been opened, and one (the Castleblaney, Keady and Armagh Railway) is in course of construction. In the present Session there are two Irish Railway Bills promoted by new companies, namely, the Kilkenny, Castlecomer, and Athy Railway Bill, and the Sligo and Bundoran Railway Bill. Neither of these Bills has yet been read a second time. I have no means of obtaining the information asked for in the concluding portion of the question.