MR. GIBSON BOWLES (Lynn Regis)
I beg to ask the Secretary to the Admiralty, are the Admiralty aware that the London and South-Western Railway Company proposes to substitute for the existing swing bridge a permanent bridge across the channel leading from the head of Portsmouth Harbour round Portsea Island to the sea at Langston Harbour; would such a permanent bridge wholly prevent this channel from being used by torpedo boat destroyers, and thus close the alternative entrance to Portsmouth Harbour; does the Admiralty propose, either by remonstrance with the Company or by opposition to any Bill it may introduce for authorising the alteration, or otherwise, to procure the abandonment of the proposal; if not, what steps do they propose to take.
§ THE SECRETARY TO THE ADMIRALTY (Mr. ARNOLD-FORSTER, Belfast. W.)
The Admiralty have sanctioned the construction of a permanent bridge over the Hilsea Channel after full con- 101 sideration of the proposal in all its aspects, including, of course, that to which the hon. Member's Question relates. The Admiralty do not, therefore, intend to take any steps in opposition to the project.
MR. GIBSON BOWLES
The hon. Gentleman says full consideration was given to this matter. Did the Admiralty consult the Admiral Commanding at Portsmouth?