§ 36. Mr. MACPHERSON
asked the Minister of Agriculture if it is the custom to advertise for leasing the salmon fishings belonging to the Crown; if so, whether this was done in the case of the Kintail salmon fishings and of the Letterfearn salmon fishings; and whether, seeing that two ex-service men have offered the highest bid for the Letterfearn fishings, and in view of the fact that they are the present leaseholders and that this 3209 is their means of obtaining a livelihood, he will give favourable consideration to their offer?
§ The MINISTER of AGRICULTURE (Mr. Guinness)
The answer to the first and second parts of the question is in the affirmative. The Letterfearn fishings were advertised for tender in July last; two offers only were received: one from the two ex-service men to whom the right hon. Gentleman refers, and the other on behalf of the proprietors of the Kintail, Glenshiel and Inverinate Estates jointly. The latter offer was substantially the higher of the two and was accepted by the Commissioners of Crown Lands by letter dated 27th July, 1928.
§ Mr. MACPHERSON
Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that one of the three proprietors has withdrawn from that joint offer and that the two ex-service men have now made an offer equal to the joint offer made by the two proprietors, and will the right hon. Gentleman see if the two proprietors can be induced to withdraw their offer, and will he give special sympathetic consideration to the ex-service men's offer?
§ Mr. GUINNESS
I was not aware that anyone had withdrawn from the offer, but the draft lease was sent to these three estate owners at the beginning of August, and, in spite of constant reminders, we have not had it back. If the other owners would withdraw like the owner mentioned by the right hon. Gentleman, we should be very glad to let to the two ex-service men on the amended terms that they have now offered.