HC Deb 22 June 1893 vol 13 cc1650-1

I beg to ask the Secretary to the Admiralty whether it costs more to build similar vessels at one Government Dockyard than another; whether it is the fact that the Bonaventure, built at Devonport, has cost more than the sister ship the Fox, constructed at Portsmouth; whether this is due to the absence of proper plant at Devonport, or to what other cause; and whether steps are being taken to remove the causes of this difference?

MR. GOURLEY (Sunderland)

At the same time, may I ask whether the Bonaventure, recently built at Devon-port, cost £6,000 more than a sister ship, the Fox, constructed at Portsmouth; if so, can he state who is responsible for so large a difference—the Board of Admiralty, Naval Constructor, or the superintending Director of Dockyards?


The Bonaventure and Fox are both in an incomplete state. The former was launched on 2nd December, 1892, and the latter on the 15th instant. Consequently, more money has been expended on the former up to the present time. When complete the Bonaventure should cost more than the Fox, owing to the former being fitted as a flag ship, whereas the latter is not to be so fitted. There is no absence of proper plant at Devonport, and no cause exists why vessels should not be produced as cheaply there as at any other Dockyard, although, from various causes, there is sometimes a difference in the cost of similar vessels built at different yards.