asked the Chief Secretary for Ireland whether the Estates Commissioners have yet considered the applications for free grants made by John Floyd, Patrick M'Laughlin, Patrick Gallin, Michael Carlin, and John Kelly, reinstated evicted tenants on the estate of James B. Delap, Killygordon, county Donegal; if not, can they name an early date on which these applications will be considered, as the applicants have no means of stocking their farms or of rebuilding their houses which had been demolished; is he aware that civil bills for the recovery of interest in lieu of rent were served on Patrick M'Laughlin and John Kelly for periods during which they were not in occupation of their holdings, and that decrees were granted in October last against Patrick 2034W M'Laughlin and John Floyd for non-payment of interest in lieu of rent; whether, considering that these men were put in possession of bare farms which had largely gone out of cultivation, and that, owing to want of farming capital they have been unable to meet the sums payable as interest, he will have legal proceedings stopped and expedite the consideration of their application for grants?
§ Mr. BIRRELL
The Estates Commissioners have directed inquiries to be made as regards the cases of these tenants with a view to considering the expenditure, if any, to be sanctioned to assist them in working their holdings. The estate was sold by the owner direct to the tenants, and the purchase agreements signed by the parties provided for the payment of interest in lieu of rent from the dates mentioned in them. This interest is collectable under Statute by the Land Commission and payable to the owner, who, however, has intimated that he is prepared to accept two years' interest in satisfaction of all interest due by the reinstated tenants.