HC Deb 20 July 1876 vol 230 cc1629-30

asked the President of the Board of Trade, Whether the British steamer "Marie," which has been lying for two years past at Santander, and latterly at Bilbao, is about to sail for the river Niger with a cargo of gin; whether his attention has been called to the fact that the vessel is quite unseaworthy, on account of her having been built for river traffic, her engines being partly above deck, and her free board being only eight inches; and, whether, having regard to the fact that the local authorities at Bilbao have power to detain unseaworthy ships, he has taken steps to prevent the sailing of the "Marie?"


The circumstances relating to the British steamer Marie are these—About two years ago it was reported that she was lying at Bilbao, and her crew refused to sail in her, as unfit to go to sea. The Board of Trade instructed the Consul to summon a Naval Court, which, after survey, reported that she was unfit for a winter voyage. New owners having lately bought her, and being about to send her to sea, the Board warned them of what had occurred, and sent information to the Committee of Lloyd's and the Salvage Association. A telegram has this day been received from the Consul at Bilbao stating that she was going to sail for the Niger, and that the crew were willing to go, and that he was of opinion that there were no reasons for detaining her from the proposed voyage. There are, however, no local authorities having power to detain a British ship at Bilbao.