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Local Studies Department

The Gordon Bennett Motor Race 1903 - Leinster Leader June 1903

Back to Introduction | June list of articles

Leinster Leader, Saturday 27 June 1903 – Page 6

Before Right Hon. H. Bruen, P.C. (in the chair), Messrs. C. J. Engledow, J.P.; W. B. Clayton and R. R. Kennedy, R.M.

Mr. Heard, D.I., said it was suggested to him he should bring a matter before them in connection with the Motor Race, and that was in regard to granting occasional licenses for the day of the Race. Athy had already passed a resolution, and he was directed to make the suggestion to their worships. A resolution they would adopt would be binding on the magistrates who were not in attendance.– Mr. Engledow: Legally Binding? Mr. Heard said that he meant they would probably be bound by their decision. An individual magistrate outside could, of course, grant an occasional license.– The Chairman said he understood that the Resident Magistrate (Mr. Kennedy) had a communication from the authorities contradicting that view. He referred to a communication from the Privy Council which stated it was the opinion of the law advisers of the Crown that it was not competent for magistrates out of Petty Sessions to give those occasional licenses.- Mr. Heard: They have done it. It has been done very well all over Ireland.– Mr. Kennedy: I can only repeat what Mr. Bruen has said. I was directed to bring to the notice of the local magistrates that licenses should be given only in Petty Sessions and collectively.– Mr. Engledow said this was the first he heard about the matter.– Mr. Kennedy said he showed it to the magistrates in the court, and wired to the magistrates in Kildare and Queen’s County.– Mr. Engledow said he had not previously seen or heard of the communication.- The Chairman expressed the opinion that a person who acted on the occasional license granted by a magistrate out of Petty Sessions would be liable to prosecution, but Mr. Heard said that was not so. If the magistrate granted the license, it could be acted upon.– After a consultation among the magistrates, the Chairman said:- I think from a conversation we had that the Petty Sessions Clerk will be directed to inform each of the magistrates of the Petty Sessions district that this opinion has been given from the Castle “that no magistrate is entitled to issue occasional licenses unless acting in Petty Sessions with other magistrates.”