Municipal Corporations (Ireland) Act 1840
|Long title||An Act for the Regulation of Municipal Corporations in Ireland|
|Chapter||3 & 4 Vict. c. 108|
|Royal Assent||10 August 1840|
|Commencement||25 October 1840|
|Repealing legislation||Local Government Act 2001 (Ireland), Local Government Act (Northern Ireland) 1972 (Northern Ireland)|
The Municipal Corporations Act (Ireland) 1840 (3 & 4 Vict. c. 108), An Act for the Regulation of Municipal Corporations in Ireland, was passed by the Parliament of the United Kingdom on 10 August 1840. It was one of the Municipal Corporations (Ireland) Acts 1840 to 1888.
The Act followed similar lines to the Municipal Corporations Act 1835 which reformed municipal boroughs in England and Wales. Prior to the passing of the Act, there were sixty-eight borough corporations in Ireland, many of them were ineffective, some virtually defunct and none of them in any way representative of their populations. The Act dissolved all but ten of the corporations.
The Reformed corporations
The ten reformed corporations, which were named in Schedule A to the Act were to be styled as Mayor, Aldermen and Burgesses, with the exception of Dublin where the title Right Honourable Lord Mayor was retained.
|1||Belfast||Antrim and Down|
|3||Cork (County of the City)||Cork|
|4||Drogheda (County of the Town)||Louth and Meath|
|5||Dublin (County of the City)||Dublin|
|6||Kilkenny (County of the City; merging the former boroughs of Kilkenny and Irishtown)||Kilkenny|
|7||Limerick (County of the City)||Limerick|
|10||Waterford (County of the City)||Waterford|
Under section 13 of the Act, the remaining 58 borough corporations were dissolved on 25 October 1840. The extinguished boroughs were listed in schedules B and I of the Act. Boroughs in schedule B could petition for a grant of a charter restoring borough status, as could any town with a population of more than 3,000. Boroughs in Schedule I were already effectively extinct at the time of the passing of the Act, and so were not permitted to apply for such a charter.
Only one town, Wexford, applied for a charter restoring borough status, which was granted in 1846.
Boroughs in Schedule B
|3||Athlone||Roscommon and Westmeath|
|5||Bandon or Bandon Bridge||Cork|
|9||Carrickfergus (County of the Town)||Antrim|
|31||Portarlington||Queen's County and King's County|
Boroughs in Schedule I
Many of the extinguished boroughs had an additional form of local government in place, in the form of commissioners appointed under the Lighting of Towns (Ireland) Act, 1828. Where such a body existed, it was deemed to be the successor to the corporation. Section 16 of the Act provided that any borough dissolved with property worth more than £100, and which did not have commissioners under the 1828 Act, should have a board of "Municipal Commissioners" established. In most cases, the commissioners appointed under the terms of the 1840 Act eventually adopted the terms of the 1828 Act or its replacement, the Towns Improvement (Ireland) Act 1854. By 1876, only Carrickfergus was still governed by commissioners appointed under the 1840 Act.
- "Municipal Corporations (Ireland) Act 1840". The Statutes of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. Vol.XV Part II. Her Majesty's Printer's. 1840. pp. 599–669. Retrieved 31 July 2013.
- Mark Callanan & Justin F Keogan (editors), Local Government in Ireland Inside Out, Dublin, 2003
- Desmond Roche, Local Government in Ireland, Dublin, 1982