§ Sir THOMAS ESMONDE
asked the Financial Secretary to the War Office what is the cause of the delay in dealing with the claims of the Irish railway companies lodged so far back as last April; whether Lord Terrington's Commission has, after full argument in October, 1917, decided in favour of the railway companies on the principle of their claims, and whether now it is merely a question of the sum to be paid to each railway company; whether he is aware that representatives of the War Office recently proceeded in Dublin, without any previous notice to the railway companies concerned, and were consequently not able to proceed with the investigation of the claims; and what course the War Office intends now to adopt to bring this 1127W long protracted matter to a conclusion, with a view to an early payment to the railway companies concerned?
§ Mr. FORSTER
Lord Terrington's Committee decided that the railways might proceed to prove the amount of their claims for loss (if any) directly due to specific military interference. This has turned out to be a very complicated matter, and in spite of every desire on the part of the War Office to bring it to a head the progress made has been slow. Arrangements have been made for an expert to examine the books of the companies this week, and I hope the matter will shortly be brought to a conclusion.