§ SIR WILLIAM PLOWDEN (Wolverhampton, W.)
I beg to ask the First Lord of the Admiralty who is the officer specially deputed to watch the result of compositions applied to ships of the Navy and those of the mercantile marine; is this officer an expert, and what previous technical experience and education has he had to qualify him for his duty; and when will Treasury sanction be obtained for his appointment?
§ THE FIRST LORD OF THE ADMIRALTY (Lord G. HAMILTON,) Middlesex, Ealing
The officer in question is Commander Pitt, R.N. Commander Pitt, in addition to his naval experience and training, was a member of an Admiralty Committee on compositions for coating ships' bottoms, and when that Committee, as a body, ceased their investigations, this officer was retained to watch the matter for a period of six months from the 1st of April, 1888. His services in this capacity were found so valuable that he has since been retained for two further periods of 12 months each, which were renewed as they expired. The term of his present appointment expires on September 30. The sanction of the Treasury has not been asked, the employment of this officer being special, and involving no addition to the permanent establishment.