§ MR. COGAN
said he wished to call the attention of the House to a letter from the Lords of the Admiralty to the Royal Western Yacht Club of Ireland, dated the 26th day of June, 1858, withdrawing the privilege of wearing the white ensign from that club, although granted them by Royal Warrant, dated the 6th day of February, 1832, and confirmed by letters of the Admiralty of the 30th day of July, 1849, and the 29th day of April, 1853, and ratified by Vote of the House of Commons, of the 29th day of July, 1853, and to move for—Copies of all Correspondence relating to the Warrant granted to the Royal Western Yacht Club of Ireland, especially those in the years 1832, 1842, 1849, 1853, and 1858, and particularly the Admiralty Warrant to the Royal Western Yacht Club of Ireland, of the 6th day of February, 1832, and Letters of the 31st day of July, 1849, the 29th day of April, and the 2nd day of May, 1853; also Letter addressed by the late Maurice O'Connell, Esq., M.P., to the Lords of the Admiralty, and Sir James Graham's reply, dated the 23rd day of May, 1853. Of any Letters or Minutes of any applications made by the Royal St. George's, the Holyhead, or any other Yacht Club, for permission to wear the White Ensign, with the Answers thereto. Of any Memorials or 1527 Letters from the Royal Yacht Squadron to the Lords of the Admiralty relative to their claim for the exclusive use of the White Ensign, with the Answers thereto, since the granting of the Warrant to that Club. Of Memorial presented by the Royal Western Yacht Club of Ireland through His Excellency the Lord Lieutenant to the Lords of the Admiralty, with the Reply thereto. And of General Warrants granted to all Royal Yacht Clubs, with the dates on which separate Warrants were issued to the Yacht Owners of the several Clubs, authorizing them to carry the respective Club Ensigns.This privilege involved the very existence of the Royal Western Yacht Club of Ireland. That club consisted of nearly 400 members, and possessed about 130 yachts. In 1832 it was authorized by Royal Warrant to wear the white ensign, but by a letter from the Admiralty, dated the 26th of June, 1858, that privilege was withdrawn, on the ground that the white ensign was restricted to the Royal Yacht Squadron. He must deny, however, on the authority of the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Carlisle, that the Royal Yacht Squadron ever had the exclusive right of using the white ensign, and what he wanted to know was, why the Admiralty had revoked the Warrant of 1832. He thought that after all that had taken place it was a harsh proceeding to withdraw the white ensign from the Royal Western Yacht Club of Ireland. It might appear ridiculous to make so much fuss about the matter, but it should be borne in mind that this was a point of honour with yatchsmen. He trusted that the Admiralty would, on reconsideration, revoke the decision at which they had arrived. He concluded by making the Motion of which he had given notice.
said, he also trusted that the decision would be reconsidered. The club consisted of 200 gentlemen, and they felt it was a harsh proceeding on the part of the Admiralty to withdraw the privilege of using the white flag from their squadron.
said, that the Admiralty had no objection to the production of the correspondence moved for, and though he could hardly say that they were prepared to reverse the decision arrived at, they would be anxious to meet the views of the hon. Gentleman as far as they could consistently with their duty.
§ SIR JAMES GRAHAM
said, that when at the Admiralty in 1832 he advised that the white flag should be extended to the Royal Western Yacht Club of Ireland, and he was sorry that the decision then come to had been revoked without any allegation of improper conduct on the part of 1528 the club being borne out. If the Admiralty reconsidered the matter he hoped that the flag would be given back as the two countries should be treated alike. There should be equality of Royal favour as well as in other matters.
§ COLONEL FRENCH
said, that no reason had been assigned for revoking the permission granted to the Royal Western Yacht Club of Ireland, and he trusted that the white ensign would be restored to them.
§ Motion agreed to. Copies ordered.