Ceisteanna—Questions. Oral Answers. - Co. Kerry Quarry Rights.

asked the Minister for Lands and Fisheries if he is aware (a) that certain tenants on the Ventry estate, Cordal, Castleisland, who purchased under the 1909 Act have a right to quarry limestone from the quarries situated in Mrs. Catherine O'Sullivan's farm, Ardnagraph, Cordal, Castleisland; (b) that the Irish Land Commission have recognised the right of these tenants to quarry limestone in the quarries mentioned; (c) that no effort has yet been made to hand over the quarries to the tenants, who are compelled to travel long distances for the lime so necessary for their lands; (d) and if the Minister will now state when his Department intends taking steps to hand over the quarries.

The estate referred to was sold by the owner direct to the tenants under the Irish Land Acts, 1903-9, in accordance with purchase agreements entered into by the parties, which were lodged with the Estates Commissioners. There is no reference in any of the agreements to a right of quarrying limestone on the quarry situated on Mrs. Catherine O'Sullivan's farm at Cordal East. During the proceedings before the Commission the purchasers alleged that one of the conditions of the sale was that the limestone quarry on this holding was to be reserved for their use, but on inquiry the owner's solicitors stated that such was not the case, and that the vendor could not have made such an agreement, as the minerals on the holding of Mrs. Catherine O'Sullivan were not his property, but belonged to the trustees of Lord Powis, deceased, from whom he held the lands under a fee-farm grant. The agreement signed by Jeremiah (now Catherine) O'Sullivan provided for the reservation of minerals to the trustees of Lord Powis, deceased, and the holding was vested in accordance with the purchase agreement. The Land Commission have no power to take any action as regards the quarry referred to.