§ 34. Mr. FIELD
asked the Financial Secretary to the War Office whether he can state, approximately, the amount ex pended in Great Britain and Ireland on the erection of buildings for war purposes; whether he is aware that a promise was given to have an examining and receiving depot provided with suitable accommodation in Dublin; and whether a committee recommended building a depot on the Liffey Bank, near Kingsbridge?
§ The FINANCIAL SECRETARY to the WAR OFFICE (Mr. Forster)
The expenditure to 31st March last was, in round 1772 figures, £30,000,000. The matter was considered recently by a conference at which some of my hon. Friend's colleagues were present, and it was decided that there were no existing buildings in Dublin suitable for an inspecting and receiving depot. The present difficulty of supplying timber and other building materials makes it impossible to erect the new building now, and I fear I see but little prospect of doing so before the end of the War.
§ Mr. FORSTER
I do not think that there is any connection between what is spent in this country on building and what is spent in Ireland. The difficulty in Dublin at present is one of providing material rather than one of finance.
§ Mr. MOONEY
Is the effect of the answer that after all the promises of the Government no receiving depot is to be established in Dublin?
§ Mr. CLANCY
Can the right hon. Gentleman say what proportion of the £30,000,000 has been spent in Ireland?
Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that a deputation has been received in Dublin by a body delegated by the War Office, and that they agreed that it was desirable and necessary that a 1773 temporary building should be erected, and that arrangements were to be made immediately for the erection of a temporary building which would serve until after the War?
§ Mr. FORSTER
I am quite aware of that, but I am also aware that the matter was considered by some of the Gentlemen representing Nationalist constituencies in Ireland with the Major-General in charge of the administration of the Irish command; and they came to the conclusion that it was impossible to find an existing building which was suitable for the purpose.