§ MR. LYELL (Orkney and Shetland)
I beg to ask the President of the Board of Trade whether he has recently received a Memorial from Shetland asking that a lighthouse may be erected on the Vee Skerries; whether he is aware that this light has long ago been approved by the Northern Lights Commissioners, but objection has been raised by the Trinity House Corporation; and whether he proposes to take steps at once to have the question settled, and start the erection of some light to protect the dangerous west coast of Shetland?
§ THE PRESIDENT OF THE BOARD OF TRADE (Mr. MUNDELLA,) Sheffield, Brightside
No Memorial has been received by me during the present year on the subject of the hon. Member's question. On the 31st December last the Commissioners of Northern Lighthouses informed me that they intended to apply to the Trinity House for the requisite statutory approval to the erection of this light. I was not aware that the Trinity House had raised any objection, but until their decision is given the Board of Trade can take no statutory action in the matter. I must, however, add that a very expensive work is now in course of construction off the northwest coast of Scotland, and this, on financial grounds, precludes the possibility of any extensive now works being undertaken for the present.
§ MR. BUCHANAN (Aberdeenshire, E.)
May I ask the right hon. Gentleman whether I did not place before him the document on the subject mentioned in the last paragraph of the question, and did not that Memorial strongly urge on the attention of the Board of Trade the necessity of proper lighting at that part with a view to facilitating navigation?
§ MR. MUNDELLA
I do not recollect the document to which the hon. Member refers. No doubt he has correctly described it. But we are at present engaged in extensive works on the northwest coast of Scotland which will cost a large sum of money, and until we have 526 completed the work in hand we can undertake no new works. In fact, we have practically exhausted the money at our disposal.