HL Deb 13 May 1853 vol 127 c315

asked the noble Duke the Secretary for the Colonies what had been done with the convicts sentenced to transportation in Ireland, since the Government had ceased to send convicts to Van Diemen's Land?


said, that the objection which had been made by a noble Earl (Earl Grey) on a previous night to the course adopted by Her Majesty's Government, did not apply to Ireland, for it so happened that, although there was an accumulation of convicts in England in consequence of the new rule not to send any more convicts to Van Diemen's Land, as regarded Ireland, two vessels had been sent to convey convicts, not to Van Die-men's Land, but to Western Australia. Since the commencement of the present year, as large a number of convicts had been sent from Ireland as if transportation to Van Diemen's Land had not been stopped.


asked whether all those convicts under transportation in Ireland were really to be sent out to a foreign country? He also wished to know whether, up to this time, any of those convicts had been detained, who it was originally intended should be sent out of the country: and whether the Government intended to improve the prison accommodation in Ireland?


thought that the answer he had already given was sufficiently satisfactory upon this point. He was not officially responsible for the gaol accommodation in Ireland; but it was not deemed necessary to investigate this subject with a view of laying down any such rules as were adverted to the other night. The noble Viscount at the head of the Home Department (Viscount Palmerston) and he (the Duke of Newcastle), having heard that the prison accommodation of Ireland was not so good as it was in this country, felt that it would be much more convenient that the convicts who were to have been sent out under the new regulations should be detained in this country rather than in Ireland.