12 JANUARY 1850, Page 11


TO THE EDITOR OP THE SPECTATORSIR—I have read with interest your comments on Sir Robert Peel's ad-

dress to his tenantry. Few people will doubt the truth of your remark, that the landowners of England generally are not in a position to give that im- petus to agricultural improvement, by drainage and other means, which Sir Robert recommends, and May be individually able to give. That the ready command of capital would enable the farmers of this country to add mate- rially to the productiveness of the land, is a fact which will not be denied even by those who doubt the possibility of removing the prevalent distress by such assistance.

Under present circumstances, however, we shall in vain expect this aid from the Treasury. But neither you nor the public generally seem to be aware that an act has been passed by the Legislature to promote the advance of private money for the improvement, by drainage and otherwise, of lands in Great Britain and Ireland, upon the same conditions and under the same management as are provided by the Public Drainage Act.

You would render an important service to the country by directing atten- tion to this act, (12 and 13 Vic. cap. 100,) which affbrds to capitalists an op- portunity_ of investing their money as a first charge on land, and to the agri- cultural interest the best means at present in their power of combating the enemy they most dread—free trade.

The two millions assigned to Great Britain by the original Drainage Act were speedily exhausted ; and my inquiries enable me to say that a very large additional sum was applied for. I understand that many of the parties who were too late in making their applications under the public act have availed themselves of the Private Money Drainage Act above mentioned. The rate of interest to be paid is left by the act to private arrangement between the parties. A rent-charge for twenty-two years (varying in _proportion to the rate of interest required by the lender) repays both principal and interest. Thus, the yearly rent-charge payable for twenty-two years for a loan of 100/. would be as understated.

When the interest demanded is Si per cent, the yearly charge is £6 11 11 If PP 81 PI 6152

618 5 7 1 9 7 5 1 7 8 6 7 12 0

The tione is not allowed to be advanced until a strict investigation of the validity of e security has been made by an Inspector from the Enclosure Office in, Spring Gardens ; and several large assurance companies are under- stood to be ready to advance any amount which may be required under the aot.

Itis right that I should add my belief that applications to the Enclosure Mee for information are in every ease promptly complied with.