Court House in the town. The occupiers were the only bidders and they had a total of £12,200. The bids were submitted to Judge Ross when the landlords were represented by Messrs Casey and Clay, solicitors, Dublin who had carriage of sale, and the tenants by T. M. Healy, KC, instructed by Mr. T. Hennessy Solr., Millstreet.
Bids were not approved. On the application of Messrs Casey and Clay, the Judge refused to approve of the bids and fixed a date at the end of the Long Vacation for a sale in his own Court in Dublin. The tenants renewed their bids, but there was a surprise bid of £12,800 from Mrs. Wallis, wife of the owner. Her counsel naively explained that she had not any money but was getting it from a Mr. Lane, a London financier. Judge Ross, whose sympathy with the landlords was well-known, gave her until Jan. 1st. 1902 to lodge the money.
When the matter again came before the Judge, Mrs. Wallis still had no money and the late Mr. D. D. Sheehan, B.L. who represented the tenants on this occasion, succeeded in getting the Judge to make a definitive order that if Mrs. Wallis did not lodge the money before March 1st. he would reject her offer.
When March came Mr. Sheehan again represented the tenants with the Rev. Chairman and the Secretary as the tenants' solicitor was unable to travel.
Mrs. Wallis again had no money and Judge Ross, after an appeal from Mr. Sheehan, made an order accepting the tenants as purchasers provided they increased their offer to the amount bid by Mrs. Wallis.
As it meant only an increase of about 2%, Mr. Sheehan agreed. This was on Monday and the judge asked that the amended bid be lodged in the court on the following Wednesday.
Instructions were wired home to the parish clerk, Mr. John M. Murphy, to have new bids signed in blank by the tenants and to send them on that night to the Rev. Chairman and the Secretary, who remained in Dublin. This Mr. Murphy did and the forms reached Dublin all right on Tuesday. Mr. Hennessy, solicitor, and some members of the Committee travelled, and the calculations were made and the amount filled in in a room very kindly placed at the disposal of the Committee by the Manager of the Clarence Hotel. The documents were lodged in Court and accepted by the Judge on Wednesday morning, and it was then the real trouble began.
Whilst the people in the Main Street had the money or could find it, how were all the weekly tenants, whose wages would be about 9/- per week, to find the money, which would be from £60 to £80 each?
Various suggestions were made and rejected as not feasible until the Secretary happened to see in an English paper news of a somewhat similar sale in that country through the Small Dwellings Acquisition Act.