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The vintage Hansard trawl - featuring surprise butter competition and the vexed issue of prams in Kew Gardens

I am not making this up:

Surprise Butter Competitions (Ireland)
.

Mr. SHEEHAN (Irish Nat (1)) asked the Vice-President of the Department of Agriculture (Ireland), how many creameries were sending butter to the surprise competitions in June, 1907, when the central council of the Creamery Managers' Association notified he Department that their members would withdraw from the competitions; and how many creameries have forwarded exhibits this season?

The VICE-PRESIDENT of the DEPARTMENT of AGRICULTURE (IRELAND) (Mr. T. W. Russell) In June, 1907, exhibits for a surprise butter competition were received from 122 creameries. At that time 128 creameries were eligible to participate in the competitions. At the surprise butter competition held in July last, exhibits were received from 73 creameries out of the total of 80 then eligible to compete. In 1907, the competitions were open to all creameries from which applications for registration under the Department's creamery scheme had been lodged. In the present year those creameries only which have been found, on inspection, to satisfy the requirements of Clause 8 of the scheme can take part in the competitions.

I do wonder what might have been buried in the butter that would constitute a surprise. The mind boggles.

Sheehan, it would seem, was suffering from some form of dairy obsession, as there's more:

Rattoo Co-operative Dairy Society

Mr. SHEEHAN asked the Vice-President of the Department of Agriculture (Ireland) whether, as a result of the refusal of the manager of the Rattoo Cooperative Dairy Society to send butter to the Department's surprise competitions in furtherance of the protest made by the Creamery Managers' Association against the appointment by the Department of an incompetent instructor...

Or rather the Rattoo UnCooperative Dairy Society, perchance.

Mr. T. W. RUSSELL I have already had occasion, in reply to the hon. Member's question of 17th May last, to say that there is no ground for the statement that an incompetent instructor has been appointed by the Department.

And so on.

Having milked that theme dry, on to the crème de la crème of the days proceeedings:

Kew Gardens (Perambulators).

Mr. BRANCH (Lib) asked the hon. Member for South Somerset, as representing the President of the Board of Agriculture, if his attention has been called to the exclusion of children from Kew Gardens who are in perambulators; and will he have this prohibition removed, as it restricts the pleasure of families in visiting these gardens?

Sir E. STRACHEY The adoption of the suggestion made by my hon. Friend would not, I think, be conducive either to the pleasure of the general public or to the utility of the gardens as a scientific institution, especially in view of the very considerable growth of population in the neighbourhood in recent years.

And a grateful nation offered up its thanks to Strachey.

Rather weightier matters:

Mr. HAZLETON asked whether the right hon. Gentleman is aware that, in connection with the recent grave rioting at Lurgan, the urban district councillors and other prominent citizens undertook to act as special constables and to use their influence on the side of peace; can he state if their services were availed of and with what result; and whether representatives 1934 of both parties joined in this effort to secure peace and order?

Mr. W. MOORE Before the right hon. Gentleman answers that question, may I ask whether it is not the fact that when the chairman of the urban council carried out the policy in the question he was at once felled to the ground by a bottle thrown from a Nationalist public-house in Portadown?


... And so on...


Mr. JOSEPH DEVLIN Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that there was peace both in Portadown and Lurgan until the hon. Member for North Armagh introduced a blackthorn stick and challenged—

And then he snapped


Mr. BIRRELL It is perfectly obvious that I cannot enter into these wretched disputes between two factions, but I hail with joy any proposal made by respectable portions of both communities to put an end to these miserable disturbances.


(1) Sheehan looks to have been an interesting character in that while an Irish Nat, he sought the consent of Northern Prods to an independent Ireland, rather than ignoring them or seeking to compel them. He also served with distinction on the Western Front.

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Blogger JuliaM said... 6:43 pm

Ah, if only we had more Stracheys in Paliament...  



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