HC Deb 08 September 1887 vol 320 cc1656-7
SIR SAVILE CEOSSLEY (Suffolk, Lowestoft)

asked the Under Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Whether the Government has yet received the Report of Her Majesty's Consul General at Antwerp, who was sent to Ostend to report fully on the case of the Morning Star, the owner of which lost a considerable sum by not being able to land fish, or communicate with his agent, at Ostend on the 23rd August, and on other similar cases; and, whether he will take such stops as are necessary to secure compensation for British subjects who have suffered losses from Ostend rioters?


Mr. Grattan was sent to Ostend to report generally on the whole question of the fishery riots, and on the case of each individual British vessel which suffered in consequence of them. His general Report has not yet been received; but lie has reported the result of his inquiries into the case of the Morning Star. This vessel, it appears, entered Ostend Harbour on the morning of the 21th—not the 23rd. Her captain employed two boatmen to make his vessel fast to the dock wall. From them he learned what had happened, and they advised him to put to sea. He spoke to the Sluice Master, who alleges that he merely confirmed the statements of the men as to the general state of affairs. The Sluice Master was then asked by the captain as to procuring a tug, and he replied that at that early hour one was not procurable; but he asked the pilot of the English steamship Medley, which was about to leave, to tow the Morning Star out, which was done. The Sluice Master emphatically denied having advised or ordered the master of the Morning Star to quit the port. As regards compensation to British subjects who have suffered losses from the Ostend rioters, it appears that such claims should be addressed to the Municipality of Ostend. Her Majesty's Consular officers will be instructed to give such assistance as may be necessary to persons having cause to prefer them.