HC Deb 11 May 1891 vol 353 c482
DR. CAMERON (Glasgow, College)

I beg to ask the President of the Board of Trade whether, since the question on the subject addressed to him on the 30th ult., he has received information on the subject of Mr. Wigham's recent invention, by which it is alleged that the illuminating power of the most powerful lighthouse light can be increased five or six times; whether he is aware that these improvements were devised subsequent to the Trinity House Report of their experiments at South Foreland, and the Report respecting it of the Committee of the Royal Society, and therefore were not referred to in their Report; and whether he will, in the interests of trade and navigation, direct the attention of the Lighthouse Authorities to the subject with the view of their investigating it?


Yes, Sir; I have now received from Mr. Wigham a copy of a report of the lecture which he recently delivered, describing his new system of lighthouse illumination. I am not aware whether the improvements referred to were devised subsequent to the Report of the Committee of the Royal Society upon the experiments at the South Foreland; but I willingly accept Mr. Wigham's assurance upon that point. I am not prepared to suggest to the General Lighthouse Authorities to incur further expense in investigating the inventions of Mr. Wigham or of other inventors. It is the duty of the Board of Trade to control expenditure rather than to initiate it.