53 and 54. Mr. Davidson
asked the Secretary of State for Scotland (1) when the Claigan Farm, Dunvegan, Syke, small landholders' settlement was constituted; how many holdings were formed; what was the total compensation paid to the landowner; whether such compensation covered the claim for extra factoring; and how many holdings are now vacant;
(2) whether tenants who vacated their holdings on the Claigan Farm, Dunvegan, Skye, landholders' settlement, have received settlement of their claims for permanent improvements and respective shares of the club sheep stock; who paid such claims; whether State loans to former tenants of vacated holdings have been repaid and, if so, by whom; and what arrangements are being made for future tenants and continuation of the settlement?
§ Mr. Colville
The settlement at Claigan, which forms part of a private estate, was constituted at Whitsunday, 1926, and comprised 14 holdings. The total compensation paid to the landowner was £2,350, which covered any claim for additional factoring. Nine holdings are temporarily vacant, but I am not in possession of particulars as to the settlement of the claims of the former tenants in respect of permanent improvements. Payment of compensation for such improvements is a landlord's obligation. As regards the sheep stock club, the responsibility for paying the valuations of outgoing tenants has been assumed temporarily by the Department of Agriculture and the obligations of former tenants in respect of shares so taken over have accordingly 1076 been extinguished. Repayment of outstanding balances of building loans made to the former tenants has not yet been arranged. As to the future of the holdings, the owner has agreed to consider a revision of the scheme, and the Department are about to make proposals on this subject.
What is the total amount that was paid to the owner in compensation at the beginning of this settlement scheme, and has any immediate scheme been brought forward for the resettlement of those who have vacated their holdings?
§ Mr. Colville
I think my answer gives the figure of the total amount paid to the landowner at the outset and, as I have said, we are bringing forward proposals for a new scheme and I hope to be able to make a statement about it in a short time.
Will the right hon. Gentleman keep in mind that many answers from the Government Front Bench are more satisfactory than others?