HC Deb 22 February 1887 vol 311 cc288-9
MR. MACLURE (Lancashire, S.E., Stretford)

asked the Secretary to the Board of Trade, How many harbours are exempt by special Act from the 16th section of the Harbour, Docks, and Piers Clauses Act of 1847, which provides that the undertakers, before they shall be entitled to take any rates in respect of the harbour, dock, or pier, shall provide, and always thereafter maintain in good repair, an efficient and well-appointed lifeboat, a Manby's mortar, and a sufficient supply of Cartes rockets, unless specially exempt; and, in view of the advance of the times, will he cause the word "steam" to be added to the word "lifeboat?"

THE SECRETARY (Baron HENRY DE WORMS) Liverpool, East Toxteth)

It would take a long time to search throngh all the Harbour Acts of the last 40 years; but I may say that, of late years, owing to the activity of the Royal National Lifeboat Institution, and to the fact that the particular rockets and mortars named in the Act of 1847 have been replaced by more efficient life-saving apparatus, the section to which the hon. Member refers has practically remained in abeyance; and it has become the practice, when incorporating in Private Bills the Harbours, Docks, and Piers Clauses Act, 1847, to provide that that section, and the three following ones, relating to lifeboats, and to tide and weather gauges, shall not come into operation unless and until and except so far as the Board of Trade from time to time require. I am not aware that any lifeboats have yet been fitted with steam, except for purposes of experiment, and, therefore, can give no undertaking on the subject.