§ Mr. BIRRELL
Mr. Gibbons has not so far lodged with the Congested Districts Board the maps and documents for the section of his estate referred to, but he has informed the Board that he will do so as soon as possible. The Board have already received the necessary maps and documents for sections of his estate situate in the unions of Swinford and Westport
§ Mr. HAYDEN
asked the Chief Secretary for Ireland whether he is aware that the estate of George A. Newcomen, in the county of Roscommon, was offered for sale to the Estates Commissioners under Section 6 of the Irish Land Act, 1903, about the year 1908 and is entered at Record No. 5978; that, in the month of July, 1912, 2272W the Estates Commissioners issued a proposal to purchase the said estate, and said proposal was accepted by the vendor, and the tenants on this estate signed undertakings to purchase their holdings on the 15th August, 1912; have the said undertakings to purchase been lodged with the Estates Commissioners; and, if so, when; and have the Estates Commissioners agreed to purchase the said estate; and, if so, what is the date of their agreement; if the Estates Commissioners have not yet agreed to purchase the said estate, what is the cause of the delay and when do they intend to do so; and is the vendor entitled to collect the old rents from the tenants who signed undertakings to purchase their holdings?
§ Mr. BIRRELL
The reply to the first paragraph of the question is in the affirmative. The great majority of the tenants have signed undertakings to purchase their holdings at the prices fixed by the Estates Commissioners, and such undertakings were lodged with the Commissioners last month. Some of the tenants have not yet signed, and pending the lodgment of these outstanding undertakings the Commissioners are not in a position to issue their formal agreement to purchase and take over possession of the property. Meanwhile the tenants are liable to rent, but the Commissioners understand that as regards the last half-year's rent the vendor is only asking the tenants to pay interest in lieu of rent calculated on the prices fixed by the Commissioners.