HC Deb 09 June 1921 vol 142 cc2039-40
18. Mr. C. WHITE

asked the Chief Secretary whether he is aware that shooting by the police took place at the town of Tralee on the 8th August, 1920, and again on the 14th August; that on the 31st November the county hall and a number of houses were destroyed by the police; and that on the 16th April a creamery and several houses in the neighbourhood were burnt down, on the 19th April the offices of the newspapers, the "Kerryman" and the "Liberator," were destroyed, and on the 21st April more houses destroyed and a man named Bell killed; and whether any members of the Crown forces have yet been arrested or punished for any of these outrages?


As regards the first of these occurrences, the police, confronted by a dangerous and threatening crowd, fired over their heads in order to disperse them. In the early morning of 14th August some shots were fired in the streets of Tralee, but no evidence could be found as to who fired them. On 1st November a military patrol found the town hall on fire. No definite evidence of the origin of the fire has been obtained. The allegation that St. John's Parish Church was fired on with a machine gun on 23rd March is denied by the Commander-in-Chief, and was officially contradicted in the Press on 30th March. The burning of certain houses in the village of Ballymacelligot on the night of 16th April has been investigated by a court of inquiry. In their finding the court declare that they have taken every step to ascertain the true facts of the case, and are unable to come to any decision other than that the burning was carried out by persons unknown. The Commander-in-Chief states that there is no indication that members of the Crown forces were implicated in the bombing of newspaper offices on 19th April. As regards the last part of the question, I would refer the hon. Member to my reply to the right hon. Gentleman the Member for the Camborne Division (Mr. Acland) on 26th May.


In connection with the Ballymacelligot inquiry, was a verbatim report taken, and, if so, is the right hon. Gentleman prepared to lay it on the Table of the House for Members to see?

Colonel NEWMAN

Can the right hon. Gentleman say how many houses have been burnt in the county of Kerry by Sinn Feiners within the last six months?


I must have notice of those questions.