§ Mr. JOYCE
asked the President of the Board of Trade (1) whether his attention has been called to the repeated complaints of the butter traders of Limerick into the manner in which the Great Southern and Western Railway Company are constantly delaying consignments of butter for the English markets, so that very often this perishable produce has to be sold below its marketable value, and the consequent injury to this trade; whether the Board of Trade propose to take any steps to secure that the railway companies shall fulfil their obligations; and (2) whether his attention has been called to a number of complaints made by Irish pig-buyers against the Irish railway companies owing to the delay in forwarding pigs consigned to the English markets and the consequent loss to the owners on account of the deterioration of the animals, whereby the loss per head on the animals thus delayed amounts to as much as 5s.; and whether, seeing the amount of damage done to this trade by the action of those railway companies, the Board of Trade will take the matter up with the view of compelling those companies to give a better service and a quicker delivery, so as to ensure that the pigs will reach the English markets within the proper time?
The Board of Trade have received occasional complaints with regard to the pig traffic, but more recently with regard to butter. I have no compulsory powers in the matter, but I am always ready to communicate with the railway company concerned if the particulars of any case of hardship are brought to my notice.