§ Mr. BOLAND
asked the Chief Secretary for Ireland can he state whether the recent contract for the heating and ventilation of the Four Courts in Dublin was advertised; whether he is aware that a special ventilating fan of English manufacture was specified, which precluded Irish manufacturers from competing; whether he is aware that a patented fan is manufactured in Belfast, which is used in the ventilation of battleships and of public buildings throughout the United Kingdom and in the underground railway of New York; and can he state why Irish manufacturers were precluded from competing for this contract?
§ Mr. HOBHOUSE
The contract was not advertised, as the work is difficult and of a special nature. The Board invited competitive tenders from three firms with whose work they are acquainted. Two of these firms are Irish and one Scotch. The Board did not specify any make of 1121W fan, but left each firm tendering to specify the fan it thought most, suitable, subject to consideration and approval by the Board. No tender has yet been accepted. Two types of patent fan manufactured in Belfast are known to the Board, and their merits, with those of other types, are under consideration.