§ SIR JOHN LENG (Dundee)
I beg to ask the Lord Advocate if he can explain why the available convict labour for the construction of the harbour at Peterhead is so much less than originally contemplated as to increase the estimated cost of the work by £160,000?
§ THE LORD ADVOCATE
I am in-formed by the Prison Commissioners that in 1882, when the Peterhead Scheme was suggested, it was estimated that the working party of convicts which would be available would be 500, whereas at present the total available number is 235. The falling-off is due to a decrease in the annual average of sentences to penal servitude, and in their average duration.