HC Deb 08 August 1844 vol 76 cc1931-2
Captain Pechell

As the right hon. Baronet had laid papers on the Table concerning Captain Warner, he would ask the right hon. Gentleman a question. He had received a model of a vessel from Shoreham, the port from which the ship destroyed by Captain Warner had sailed; and from that it appeared the ship had ropes fitted on board her, fastened from stem to stern, and that after the process it appeared that from 150 to 200 fathoms of line had been thrown overboard from the steam-vessel applied to the barque blown up, showing that a direct communication had been established between the steam vessel and the ship. He wished to know if the Government had received from the naval officers any communication calculated to explain or to affirm the suspicions which most people entertained with regard to that experiment.

Sir R. Peel

had seen the reports which had been made to the Admiralty upon the subject by naval officers; but those officers had not been admitted into any very close communication with the vessels. He could not either confirm or deny the Report to which the hon. and gallant Member had referred. The experiment, he would not deny, might have been performed in the manner in which Captain Warner represented; but with respect to the ropes, he had no opportunity of satisfying him- self on the subject in such a manner as to enable him to answer the question, not that he meant to imply that the vessel had not been blown up in any other way than the one which had been represented. If the hon. Gentleman had read the correspondence he would see that it was not likely that he (Sir R. Peel) would enter into any incautious engagement. He would not give 400,000l. or even 100,000l. for the blowing up of a vessel, without having the vessel pretty closely examined beforehand; but he again repeated, that he did not mean to insinuate that there had been any unfair proceeding on the part of Captain Warner.