§ *SIR CHARLES DILKE (Gloucestershire, Forest of Dean)
I beg to ask the Secretary to the Admiralty whether the Admiralty are able to assure the House that for the purpose of keeping the ships of the A Division of the Fleet Reserve at all times in efficient fighting condition there is maintained at present a sufficient staff of mechanics, and whether the full complement of mechanics' ratings for making good defects is as a fact obtained and kept up.
§ MR. ARNOLD-FORSTER
Owing to the great increase in the number of ships in the Fleet Reserve difficulty has been experienced in maintaining a sufficient number of mechanics in certain ratings, and steps are being taken with a view to increase the number of men available, and to maintain the ships of the A Division of the Fleet Reserve in their present efficient fighting condition.
§ MR. WILLIAM ALLAN (Gateshead)
May I ask the hon. Gentleman what class of men he includes under the head mechanics?