§ Mr. PATRICK MEEHAN
asked the Chief Secretary how many estates have been purchased in Queen's County under the Land Purchase (Ireland) Acts from the passing of the Ashbourne Act to the 1st April, 1914?
§ Mr. BIRRELL
Proceedings under the Land Purchase Acts prior to 1903 were for the sale of separate holdings, and not of estates as a whole. The number of holdings in Queen's County purchased or agreed to be purchased under the Land Purchase Acts from the passing of the Act of 1885 to the 1st instant is 5,632.
§ Mr. T. M. HEALY
asked the Chief Secretary if his attention has been called to the judgment of the Recorder of Cork, when granting decrees against tenant purchasers at Midleton, as to the hardship inflicted on the farmers sued by the Land Commission owing to their cattle being rendered unsaleable by the prohibitions of the Department of Agriculture respecting foot-and-mouth disease; will he say what numbers of decrees were granted at Midleton against tenant purchasers in 1914, and for the same period in 1913; and, as the Midleton fair has been forbidden this year by the Department of Agriculture, will the Land Commission abstain from enforcing the decrees until farmers are allowed to sell their cattle?
§ Mr. BIRRELL
I have seen a newspaper report of the observations of the Recorder of Cork at the recent Midleton Quarter Sessions on the subject referred to in the question. The number of decrees granted at the Quarter Sessions against tenant-purchasers was eighty-four; and the number of decrees granted at the corresponding Midleton Sessions in 1913 was fifty-five. The number at the corresponding Sessions in 1912 was seventy. The Land Commission are bound to enforce the prompt payment of Land Purchase Annuities 1877W and have no power to suspend the execution of decrees.