HC Deb 01 March 1897 vol 46 cc1329-30
MR. JOHN BAIRD (Glasgow, Central)

I beg to ask the President of the Board of Trade whether representations have been received from various ship-owners and from Chambers of Commerce in Philadelphia, Boston, and elsewhere, complaining of the unfair discrimination which the operation of the Load-line Rules gives in favour of the ports of Baltimore, Newport News, and Norfolk for winter loading, and urging that all Atlantic ports north of Cape Hatteras be put on one footing; whether the Board propose to take any steps in this direction; and, whether the Board will furnish as a Parliamentary Paper all the communications which have been received from or sent to shipowners, Register Societies, Chambers of Commerce, Consuls, and others during the past three years on the subject of the winter North Atlantic Load-line?


Yes, Sir; the Board of Trade have received representations to the effect stated by my hon. Friend, and have carefully considered them. Before approving modifications of the Load-line Rules, the Board of Trade are bound by Statute to have regard to the representations of the several approved load-line authorities, and, in this instance, those representations have not been of such a nature as to enable the Board to take any steps at present. I should have no objection to the presentation of the correspondence, provided the other parties to it agree, and I will communicate with them on the subject.