§ Mr. J. P. FARRELL
asked the Home Secretary if he will say when it is pro-posed to divide the land of Monascallaghan, county Longford, recently acquired by the Estates Commissioners; whether it is proposed to hand over the best of these lands to neighbouring farmers with large holdings; whether he is aware that there are a number of de-serving applicants with uneconomic holdings looking for portions of such lands; and will he see that it is to such claimants and not to people with large farms that these lands will be given?
I am informed that the Estates Commissioners have issued a proposal for the purchase under the Irish Land Acts of the McCutcheon estate, county Long ford, which has been accepted by the owner, but the Commissioners are not yet in a position to say when they may be able to acquire the property. No scheme for the distribution of the un-tenanted land on the estate has yet been prepared, but in the preparation of the scheme inquiries will be made and due regard will be had to the wants and circumstances of the tenants ' in the neighbourhood.
§ Mr. FARRELL
asked the Home Secretary whether any complaint has been received as to the delay in carrying out the sale of the Sir George Fetherstone estate in county Long ford; whether he is aware that it is now eight years since the agreements were signed and whether anything will be done to expedite this sale?
The reply to the first part of the question is in the affirmative. The estate is the subject of proceedings for sale by the owner direct to the tenants under the Irish Land Act, 1903, and purchase agreements at prices agreed upon between the parties were lodged with the Estates Commissioners in May, 1908. Having regard to the position of the estate on the principal register of direct tales (all cash) and to the number of other estates in priority thereon, the Commissioners are unable at present to say when it will be reached in its order of priority to be dealt with. When reached, it will be dealt with as expeditiously as possible.