Rooney v Department of Agriculture for Ireland

CourtCourt of Appeal (Irish Free State)
Judgment Date01 January 1924
Docket Number(1918. No. 300.)
Date01 January 1924
Rooney v. Board of Agriculture
(1918. No. 300.)


Food supply - Maintenance of - Entry on land for purpose of - Lands sublet - Unreasonable withholding - Jurisdiction - Compensation to owner - Defence of the Realm Acts - Regulation 2 L.

Lands were compulsorily acquired by the defendants for the maintenance of food supply under Regulation 2 L of the Defence of the Realm Act, which lands were at the time sublet in conacre. In an action by the owner of the lands against the defendants for damages and an injunction:

Held, by the Court of Appeal (affirming the decision of the Master of the Rolls), that the question whether the use of the lands had been unreasonably withheld was one solely for the opinion of the Department of Agriculture, whose conclusion thereon was not open to review in an action.

Held, also, that the omission from the Regulation, as applied to Ireland, of sub-s. 4, providing for compensation on the determination of the occupation to any person injuriously affected by the exercise of the powers under the Regulation does not amount to a statutory rescission of any existing right of compensation vested in such person.


The plaintiff was the registered owner in fee simple of certain lands containing 7 acres 3 roods and 2 perches, and 6 acres 2 roods and 10 perches respectively, situated near Cabra, in the city of Dublin, all of which she had let under conacre lettings for eleven months from the 1st February, 1918, for lairages for sheep and cattle, and for dairying purposes.

The plaintiff by her statement of claim alleged that the defendants broke and entered the said lands, and authorized the entry therein without lawful warrant of certain persons acting under the directions of the defendants, and broke up the same, and rendered them unfitted for the purposes for which they had been let; and she claimed an injunction and damages.

The defendants by their defence relied upon the provisions of the Defence of the Realm Act (4 & 5 Geo. 5, c. 29) and of Regulation 2 L made thereunder, and pleaded that being of opinion that, with a view to maintaining the food supply of the country, it was expedient that they should exercise their powers under the said provisions; and being further of opinion that the said lands, which were in the county borough of Dublin, were immediately required for the purpose of being cultivated in allotments in order to provide necessary food for the residents in the locality, and that the use of the said lands was unreasonably withheld, they by an order under their seal, dated the 16th March, 1918, decided to enter upon the said lands and arrange for their cultivation in accordance with the said regulation; and in pursuance of the said order and under the powers given them in that behalf by the said regulation by an authorization in writing, dated the 16th March, 1918, duly authenticated under their seal, authorized the council of the borough of Dublin to exercise on behalf of the defendants the powers conferred upon the defendants by the said regulation of entering upon the said lands and arranging for the cultivation of the same, and that save as aforesaid they did not enter or authorize any entry upon the said lands.

The plaintiff by her reply pleaded that the said...

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1 cases
  • Foley v The Irish Land Commission and Attorney General
    • Ireland
    • Supreme Court
    • 19 December 1952
    ...that the purchaser has failed to comply with the direction shall be conclusive evidence for all purposes of the facts so certified. (1) [1919] 1 I. R. 302 (2) [1950] I. R. (1) [1944] Ir. Jur. Rep. 55. (2) 21 Ohio 41. (3) [1935] I. R. 170, at p. 236. (1) [1950] I. R. 67. (2) [1899] 2 Ch. 710......

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