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The 1909 Hansard Trawl - featuring an overcrowded police hut, larch obsessives and making a killing from opium

First up, Old Age Pensioners (Number and Cost).

Mr. DUNDAS WHITE asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he can say what were the numbers of old age pensioners on the books of the pension officers for England and Wales, Scotland, Ireland, and the United Kingdom as a whole respectively for the latest date to which figures are available; what has been the cost of the pensions in each country from 1st January this year to the latest date for which the figures are available; and what is the estimated total cost of old age pensions for the present financial year?

And the Welsh Wizard duly came up with the numbers   - 682,768.  And it cost £6,554,816 to provide said pensions.  The figures are broken down by age and three of the four nations of these islands, and something that struck me was either a greater proportion of Irish men lived to retire or Irish women did not, as 43% of Irish pensioners were male, compared to 37% for England &Wales and 34% of Scots.  Curious, no? 

Meanwhile, everyone's favourite larch obsessive has competition:

Mr. REES asked the Postmaster-General whether he has received any tenders from Wales for home-grown larch fir to be used in substitution for Norwegian fir for telegraph poles?

Mr. BUXTON I received four tenders. One has been accepted for the whole quantity offered, and one definitely declined, the price being prohibitive. The other cases are still under consideration.

I'm sure that got him an admiring paragraph in the Montgomery Bugle when he told them about it.   

One for the dreadnought spotters, so to speak:

Mr. GRETTON asked the First Lord of the Admiralty what increase in the capacity of Great Britain to produce gun-mountings for battleships has been made since last March?

Mr. McKENNA It is not considered desirable to enter into details on the subject, but a satisfactory increase in our capacity has been made.

Can't have Johnny Foreigner knowing that sort of thing, can we?

Meanwhile, a bumper opium crop in Assam:

Sir HENRY COTTON  asked the Under-Secretary of State for India if he can state what was the amount of opium issued and the amount of duty levied in the Assam Valley districts year by year from 1895–6 to 1907–8; what was the Treasury price of opium during this period; and to what figure was the Treasury price of opium raised on 1st April, 1909?

The MASTER of ELIBANK The figures are...  62410 sirs in 1907-08, raising 177684 rupees in duty.

The place where there would always be a policeman when you needed one, but the inhabitants did not like that arrangement.  At all.

Mr. DUFFY asked the Chief Secretary whether he will explain the object of keeping so many policemen in the Hut, at Rosburgh, Kilchreest, Loughrea; is he aware that the people of the district have protested repeatedly against the number of policemen quartered in the parish at present; can he state, respectively, the exact population of the parish, and the number of policemen stationed at Kilchreest and quartered all over the pariah at the present time; and, in view of the peaceable state of the district, will he cause the number of police there stationed to be reduced?

Mr. BIRRELL  I understand that there are eight police at Roxborough and eleven at Kilchreest, and that they are required for the protection of certain persons in the neighbourhood. The population of the parish of Kilchreest is approximately 500. Some of the inhabitants have from time to time protested against the employment of extra police, but the responsible police authorities are unable at present to recommend a reduction in the number of men at either of the above places.

So one for every 26.3 parishioners. Kilchreest is in Galway, and looks rather pretty. It is quite near Athenry, place noted for its fields, I believe.

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Blogger Pavlov's Cat said... 3:47 pm

they are required for the protection of certain persons in the neighbourhood.

I would suggest that they were the 1909 version of a Police Protection squad.

But who? MP's, Pop stars.

However being as it's 1909 Ireland it's more likely to be either Landlords or Magistrates.  

Anonymous puzzled of nether wallop said... 7:42 pm

Sorry to have been quiet of late old chap. I have a new project namely counting the hairs on my legs which takes up most of my time.

Should be finished soon, though!

Oh bugger! Lost count again!




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