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The Fifth Report Fees, Gratuities, Perquisites Ireland

18/03/1807

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The Fifth Report Fees, Gratuities, Perquisites Ireland

Date of Article: 18/03/1807
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No. 47.] ON FEES, GRATUITIES, hz.-( E: cc: fc.~) No. 47. 99 The Examination of Mr. ALEXANDER STEWART ; taken on Oath, the 29th and 3lit of January 1807. This Examinant faith, . , He is a Diltiller in the Town of Sligo ; he works a 500 Gallon Still. Undemanding fome l ime ago, that, on an Average, 15 Puncheons of Spirits were permitted weekly into Shgo, he was induced to commence the Bufinefs of a Diftiller ; for the laft Ten Months he worked, he does not tl ink he fold above Seven or Eight Puncheons Weekly in his . Neighbourhood ;.. jie attributes. that to the great Increafe of unlicenfed. Diftillation in his Vincinity, which he believes to be in confequence of the Increafe in monthly Charges latterly impofed on the licenfed Diftiller, and their thereby paying a greater Proportion of Duty than heretofore; the unlicenfed Diftillers fold their Spirits from Two to Three Shillings per Gallon below the Price of his permitted Spirits. He has not w rkedTThce the 29t1rSepfembef,"' ahd his Stock was exhaufted early in No- vember ; notwithftanding which, he does not believe that more than Five Puncheons of Spirits made by a licenfed Di iller have fince that Time been received into the Town, though there is no hrenfed Still in any Direction within the Diftanceof6o or 70 Miles of Sligo. He believes the Confumption is now chiefly fupplied by the unlicenfed Diftillers, and he thinks that the Number of unlicenled Stills is increafing. He believes Seizures of unlicenfed Spirits have very rarely been made in Sligo ; and as they were generally brought in at Night, attended by Bodies of armed Men, he don't think the Officers would have been able, if they had been difpofed, to feize them. He thinks it would tend very much to the Suppreffion of unlicenfed Diftillation, if Wafh or Pot Ale, or the Veffels ufed for their Fermentation being found, fubjected the Townland or Parifli to the fame Penalty as finding a Still or other Utenlil ufed for Diftillation. He thinks that allowing fmaller Stilis to be fet up, would alfo tend to difcourage unlicenfed Diftillation ; but that if the Stills were confined to large Towns, private Diftillation would increafe confiderably. He thinks the People of the Country prefer the Spirits made by the unlicenfed, to thofe made by the licenfed Diftillers, as thev are generally made from Malt, and the latter from raw Grain. The private Diftiilers purchafe great Quantities of Corn in the Market of Sligo, and carrv it from thence to the Places where they work their unlicenfed Stills. Thefe Purchafes have latterly advanced confiderably the Price of Grain in the Market of Sligo. The Officer dare not vifit Places fufpected of unlicenfed Diftillation, without being fupported by a Party of Soldiery, which caufes their Approach to be immediately per- ceived, when the Still is conveyed away and concealed ; but if the Penalty on the Townland attached on the finding Wafh, Singlings, or the Veffels ufed for Fermen- tation, they would frequently be difcovered, from the Difficulty attending their fudden Removal. flI, ,, ,, , , The Spirits made by unlicenfed Stills are fold in his Neighbourhood, at an average Price of 5d. per Gallon of the Strength of Proof, and the Quantity of Malt ufed is fo great as generally to increafe the Price of Earley from 4d. to 6d. per Stone, beyond the Market Price of Diftrids where private Diftillation does not prevail. Alexr Stewart. J. S. Rochfort. Fred' Geale. Robert Alexander. Cba' Saxton.
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