§ 66. Mr. ROYCE
asked the Minister of Agriculture whether it is his intention to redeem the tithe on some 5,000 acres of land in the parishes of Sutton Bridge and Lutton; whether the present tithe owner pays £809 in rates for these two parishes; whether, if redemption is brought about, the other ratepayers, mainly occupiers of land, will have to pay that amount between them; and whether in the parish of Sutton Bridge redemption of tithe will mean an addition of a 2s. rate?
The MINISTER of AGRICULTURE (Sir Arthur Boscawen)
The Ministry is taking steps to redeem the tithe rent-charge charged on its lands at Sutton Bridge and Lutton. The usual particulars as to the rates paid on the tithe rent-charge have not yet been received 38 from the local rating authorities, but the Ministry is informed by the collector of the lay tithe rent-charge that the amount of rates paid by the lay impropriator for these two parishes last year was £809. This payment was, however, apparently in respect of the whole of the £1,938 lay tithe rent-charge payable in these two parishes, of which sum the Ministry is redeeming £1,134 only. The effect of the redemption is to increase the rateable value of the property liable to the tithe rent-charge. I am not in a position to express an opinion as to the extent (if any) to which the redemption will involve an addition to the rates on the properties of the other owners in these two parishes.
§ Mr. ROYCE
Will the right hon. Gentleman take into consideration the fact that the redemption of these tithes will impose on some very poor persons a very considerable additional burden?
Sir A. BOSCAWEN
As I have pointed out, I do not know that it will, because if you redeem tithe rent-charge and in future rates are not paid, that ipso facto increases the rateable value of the property on which the tithe was formerly paid.