HC Deb 27 July 1869 vol 198 cc797-8

said, he would beg to ask the First Lord of the Admiralty, Whether the present Board of Admiralty have considered the proposal understood to have been contemplated by their predecessors, of bringing together the Channel and Mediterranean Fleets during a part of the summer months.


In reply, Sir, to my hon. and gallant Friend, I have to say that, although I have no official information on the subject, I have reason to believe that the late Board of Admiralty had this proposal before them, and received it favourably; but I imagine that there was some difficulty in carrying it out in consequence of the two Commanders-in-Chief being Vice Admirals of nearly the same standing, and of the objection which might be felt to place one under the orders of the other. We are much impressed with the advantage of bringing the two fleets together for some weeks, and we have it in contemplation, if the state of Public Business permits, to get over the difficulty I have alluded to by my gallant Friend (Sir Sydney Dacres) and myself going out with the Channel Fleet towards the end of August, hoisting the Admiralty flag in the flag-ship—or one of the ships of the squadron—and joining the Mediterranean Fleet at Gibraltar for a cruize.