§ MR. HARRY FOSTER (Suffolk, Lowestoft)
I beg to ask the Secretary to the Admiralty if his attention has been called to the fact that, on Thursday night last, a Lowestoft fishing boat, belonging to MR. T. E. Thirtle, while fishing about eight miles east of Lowestoft, had its nets trawled into by an Ostend trawler; and that, on Friday night last, two Lowestoft fishing boats, belonging respectively to Mr. W. Turrell and Mr. G. Watford, endured a similar experience from an Osteud trawler when fishing about 1778 seven miles east of Lowestoft; whether these facts were duly reported to Her Majesty's Customs at Lowestoft on Saturday morning, with the request that the one gunboat, now on I he station for fishing protection duty, should be reinforced, and a sharper look-out kept in view of the frequency of these depredations during the past few months; and whether any steps have been taken by the Admiralty, in view of these complaints and the serious loss to the fishermen which such occurrences frequently occasion?
* SIR U. KAY-SHUTTLEWORTH
Inquiry has been made respecting the facts stated in the first paragraph of the question, and they appear to be correct. They were reported to Her Majesty's Customs at Lowestoft on Saturday, and by them to the gunboat. The Admiralty greatly regret the loss to the fishermen, but are of opinion that for the protection of the fisheries the force at present employed is sufficient—namely, one gunboat and two sailing cruisers, besides H.M.S. Hearty.