HC Deb 27 November 1914 vol 68 cc1507-8W

asked the Prime Minister why a lease of the Island of Herm, renewable at the option of the tenant only, was granted to a German company called the West Bank Liegnitz, Limited, at a rent amounting to £14 a year, and if he can now say the nature of the business carried on by the company and the date of the original lease; if it was leased before that date, the name of the lessee and the date of that lease; if there was a wireless telegraph station on the island; and if it has been, and the date when it was, taken down?


The Prime Minister has asked me to reply to this question. As my right hon. Friend explained in his answer of last Monday, the lease is an old one. It was first granted about the middle of the eighteenth century, and the lessee is entitled to have it renewed every twenty-one years at the same rent and on the same conditions on payment of a fine of three years' rent. The lease has passed through many hands, and came into the possession of the German company by assignment from the previous holders who, I understand, were a community of Trappist monks. I have no information as to the business of the West Bank Leignitz beyond what has been already given. I am informed that after thorough search no wireless station has been found on the island.