Wednesday, 14 October 1942
Dáil Éireann Debate
Mr. O'Neill: asked the Minister for Defence if he is aware that Mr. Seán  McCarthy, who is in occupation of a small house in the yard of Bantry House at a rent of £2 per month since August, 1935, has been ordered by the military authorities to leave the house and has been fined £3 for not obeying the order, and whether as this man is unable to get any alternative accommodation in Bantry the Minister will reconsider the decision to pursue his course, which would mean throwing Mr. McCarthy, his wife and five children, on the roadside.
When portion of Bantry House, with out-offices, was acquired for military purposes in August, 1940, it was thought that it would not be necessary to disturb him and his family, though the undesirability of leaving them in residence in the heart of a military post was self-evident.
Almost immediately on occupation, the officer commanding the command urged that the McCarthy family be evacuated. He referred to the danger of an accident to any of the family and to the fact that McCarthy was making himself obnoxious by using his house as a shop and trading with the troops in opposition to the official canteen. Consequently, in November, 1940, an effort was made to negotiate with McCarthy, and an offer was made to him to the effect that if he secured alternative accommodation the Department was prepared to defray any difference in rent between his existing rent of £24 per annum and £50 per annum. McCarthy, however, made no effort to secure alternative accommodation.
Consequent on an increase in the number of troops in this post, further accommodation was required and some additional rooms were obtained in the residence, and McCarthy was told that if he did not get alternative accommodation the Emergency Powers Act would be invoked. McCarthy not only continued to reside there but also continued to trade with the troops and, in addition, had brought to reside with  him two children evacuees from England. In addition, he was responsible for a certain amount of indiscipline amongst the troops as, despite orders to the contrary, they continued to purchase goods from his house, principally because credit was given to them.
On the 10th September, 1941, a notice was served on Mr. McCarthy under the Emergency Powers Order, 1939, requiring him to evacuate the house on or before the 16th September. The notice was ignored. Subsequently McCarthy was prosecuted for failing to comply with the notice and was fined £3.
Following this, McCarthy was, on the 2nd instant, given notice that the possession of his house was required by the military authorities on the 3rd idem and, failing his surrender thereof, possession by force, if necessary, would be taken on the 5th idem. It was only then that McCarthy made an effort to move, and as he did then secure alternative accommodation in Bantry and proceeded to move his furniture, he was facilitated by the military authorities until he finally evacuated the premises on Friday, the 9th instant.
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