HC Deb 17 May 1888 vol 326 cc541-2
MR. CONYBEARE (Cornwall, Camborne)

asked the First Lord of the Ad- miralty, Whether it is the fact that some eight seamen belonging to the Indus are continually employed by the Admiral Superintendent of the Devonport Dockyards in his garden, and upon domestic duties in his official residence; whether the services of these men are allowed him in addition to the £200 per annum voted to him in lieu of servants; whether he can state the total cost to the country of these seamen in pay, provisions, and allowances; what was the cost of the floating bath recently constructed and equipped by Steam Reserve artificers with Government material for the use of the Admiral's family, and out of what Vote in the Estimates was the cost of such labour and material defrayed; and, what was the cost of transforming and furnishing the Dockyard Lower School into a card-room and billiard-room by the Director of Works Department for the use of the Admiral Superintendent and his friends, and under what Vote was the cost of the material and labour of such work accounted for?


, in reply, said, the insinuation running throughout the Question that the Admiral Superintendent had made improper use of his position for his own personal convenience was wholly unfounded. The eight seamen referred to formed a boat's crew, who had been employed in their legitimate duties, and not in the house or garden of the Admiral. The floating bath was for the use, not of the Admiral's family, but of the officers generally. The alterations in regard to the billiard-room had been sanctioned by the Admiralty for the use of the Dockyard officials; and similar billiard-rooms had for some time existed both at Portsmouth and Chatham.

MR. P. STANHOPE (Wednesbury)

asked, if it was to be laid down as a general principle that sailors were to be available for domestic service?

[No reply.]