§ LORD ROBERT MONTAGU
asked the First Lord of the Admiralty, Whether Her Majesty's Government intend to carry out the Recommendations of the Royal Commission of 1861 relative to the system of control and management of the Naval Yards, and to the purchase of materials, or any part of the Recommendations on pages vi. and vii. of the Report; whether the Controller of the Navy is the officer to whom the First Lord of the Admiralty looks for the efficiency and economy with which the Dockyards are managed; and, if so, whether it is, in his opinion, conducive to the efficiency or economy of such Establishments that an officer in the position of Storekeeper General (who is entirely independent of the Controller), should be entrusted with the duty of keeping up the necessary supply of material for the Dockyards; whether it is true that the 406 office of Storekeeper General is to be abolished, and his clerks, or some of them, to be transferred to the Controller's Office, so as to form a Store and Supply Branch in the Controller's Office; whether, if such abolition is to take place, the recently created Contract Office (now, as appears by the Navy Estimates, a separate department), is to be made the sole purchasing Department; whether any office is to be created for taking stock of stores and materials, and for accounting for them to Parliament; and, whether all the heads of Departments are to be made responsible directly to the Naval Minister, and, through him, to Parliament?
§ SIR JOHN PAKINGTON,
in answer to the first part of the Question, said, that in the course of the last six years the late Board of Admiralty carried out some of the recommendations, and others they had not adopted, but he hoped his noble Friend would not deem him wanting in respect if he did not reply fully to this voluminous Question, which would necessitate a long statement, more especially as the whole subject was to be brought forward in a short time by the hon. Member for Lincoln (Mr. Seely).