§ Motion made, and Question proposed, "That a sum, not exceeding £2,995,300, be granted to His Majesty, to defray the Expense of Works, Buildings, and Repairs, at Home and Abroad, including the cost of Superintendence, Purchase of Sites, Grants in Aid, and other Charges connected therewith, which will come in course of payment during the year ending on the 31st day of March, 1911."
§ The CIVIL LORD of the ADMIRALTY (Mr. George Lambert)
Usually this Vote is taken a great deal earlier, and I hope that the fact that it has not been desired to discuss it shows that there is not the same anxiety about docks that there was three years ago. I shall console myself with the fact that from the Parliamentary point of view, "blessed is the Department which does not invite Parliamentary criticism." When we have not Parliamentary criticism we think we are conducting our work with a good deal of efficiency. The total of this Vote shows an increase of £79,000 over last year. The total includes annuities, for works in the past, of £1,330,000. It has been stated that the Admiralty have by some false economy starved the Works Department, and that certain works were delayed for want of money. I desire to repudiate that in the strongest possible way. As a matter of fact, we did not spend all the money which was voted last year. We returned something like £200,000 for other services. The policy of the Works Department is to conduct and expedite the works in every possible way, believing that it is the best economy to finish any particular work at the earliest moment. We have very considerable difficulty in estimating what may be spent, for the money to be spent in March, 1911, has to be estimated for in December, 1909. We, therefore, have to provide a margin, which is some palliative for the somewhat large Estimate that we made last year. In regard to Rosyth we took, and we expected to spend, £120,000, but the contractor only earned £75,000, and naturally he was only paid what he earned.
1146 But the question of docks really has given the Admiralty a very great deal of anxiety. You may vote money for building "Dreadnoughts," but there is the collateral expenditure of providing docks for their repair and their upkeep. At Portsmouth, even after the Naval Works Loan Acts, when the "Dreadnought" was commenced, there was only one dock capable of taking her, and now that dock will be superseded owing to the size of the later "Dreadnoughts" and "Invincibles." Of course, this gave the Admiralty cause for anxiety as Portsmouth is our chief naval base. We have only one dock there capable of taking the largest type of ship, and that is not at all satisfactory. But there are very many difficulties in adapting old docks or putting new docks into an old dockyard. In the first place, the work of the dockyard has to go on, and even now there is very considerable inconvenience experienced at Portsmouth through the contractor utilising space which is wanted for dockyard work. The new proposals which we now put forward provide for a lock, and we hope to place side by side with it a new dock, which later can be converted into a lock as well. At present the only method by which a "Dreadnought" can get into the only dock at Portsmouth is through an emergency entrance, and then only at certain states of the tide. Our predecessors provided two locks, so that if one were blocked the other could be used, and we hope that within a measurable distance of time we may have two lock docks, which will enable one of these big ships to get in at any state of the tide.
§ Mr. LAMBERT
We hope the first dock will be finished in the early part of 1913 and the second in the early part of 1914. That is the contract date. To show that there is no reason at all for supposing that the Admiralty wish to curtail expenditure in this work, we have offered to the contractor a bonus for the first lock of £400 a week for rapid completion, and that has been increased to £250 extra per week for the rapid completion of the second dock, which will mean that the contractor can, if he expedites matters, earn a bonus of 1147 £650 a week by completing before the contract time. I hope this will show that at any rate, the Admiralty are pressing on this matter with the utmost possible speed. At Rosyth, again, the increasing size of ships necessitated reconsideration of the size of the dock. The new dock there will be increased by 100 feet in length, ten feet in width, and three feet in depth, even over the proposals of two or three years ago. When finished it will be 110 feet wide, 850 feet long, and 38 feet deep. We propose to order another new dock at Rosyth, which will cost an additional £280,000. I think the Noble Lord (Lord Charles Beresford) has fallen into some confusion, because he has taken the total estimate of the work and compared it with the amount of the present contract, but the present contract will only complete a certain portion of the work, and the total estimate of £3,055,000 includes an enormous amount of other things, such as shops, machinery, and all the various paraphernalia which go to make up a dockyard.
§ Mr. LAMBERT
I quite agree, and that is the reason why we have to explain the apparent confusion. The Noble Lord has taken the amount which the contractor will earn, whereas we have to take the total estimate for the whole of the work, and that is not included in the present contract. Demands have been made from all parts of the coast for docks, and consequently for Admiralty establishments. We have listened to every one of these proposals with the greatest possible respect. Some have been very carefully considered, and we have found that it is expensive to subsidise any private dock. We went into one case on the East Coast, near Hull, and we found it would cost something like £730,000 to get a dock there, and, in addition to that, another £100,000 for shops. We are going to build a new dock at Rosyth for £280,000, and, therefore, it is much wiser economy to build more docks at Rosyth than to scatter them up and down the coast. It is a very attractive idea for any port to get an Admiralty dock. They like to have Government wages paid, and they think it is a very excellent thing; but I know from my own experience at Plymouth that it is a very doubtful advantage indeed to have an Admiralty dockyard in a commercial port, because the Admiralty will exercise 1148 restriction upon the free flow of commerce. At Devonport commercial interests are sacrificed for the sake of naval exercises. I would respectfully commend that to the Gentlemen from the Tyne who waited on the First Lord the other day. It may appear very attractive at first sight, but may be more than counterbalanced by proving a restriction to their commerce. From the point of view of the Government there is not the smallest doubt. The establishment charges go up and the cost of police goes up with every establishment that you create, and, therefore, from the point of view of economy, we wish to concentrate these dockyards in the fewest places
In addition to "Dreadnought" docks we have had to look forward as regards torpedo-boat destroyers. There has been a large number of torpedo-boat destroyers ordered, old ones are constantly in need of repair, and further accommodation was urgently needed. We obtained Treasury sanction last year for a new graving dock at Devonport which will take two destroyers. The cost of this will be £45,000. We propose to alter a dock at Pembroke which will enable two building slips to be utilised also for repairing destroyers. As to the dock at Haulbowline, I am sorry to inform the House that the contractor failed in his contract, but the Admiralty is completing the work with Departmental labour. Another question which the Noble Lord (Lord Charles Beresford) was good enough to give notice of has reference to the fairway at Portsmouth. He says there is only twenty-five feet of water there at low tide.
§ Lord CHARLES BERESFORD
The fairway was dredged up to thirty feet, and it is now silted to twenty-six or twenty-seven feet. There is a patch in the fairway between the Spit Buoy and the Bell Buoy of twenty-five feet.
§ Mr. LAMBERT
The Noble Lord has great experience which is of great value to us in all technical matters, but I went into this question this morning, and I find there is a very small patch of twenty-five feet. There are two patches of twenty-six feet, but the rest of it is from twenty-seven to thirty-three feet. I may inform the Noble Lord that we are spending in dredging £41,000. This is a matter under the control of the Commander-in-Chief, and if he wishes the dredger to be used in dredging the patch referred to, he has the right to say so. 1149 But if the Commander-in-Chief does not think it necessary to utilise the dredger in that particular patch, that shows, at any rate, that in his opinion safety is observed at the present moment. We have a large and complete dredging plant at Portsmouth, and the Commander-in-Chief can utilise it where he pleases. There is an item of £70,000 for a suction dredger. We can only dredge now to a depth of fifty feet, but the new suction dredger will dredge to sixty-five feet. That dredger will first be used for the new floating dock berth and will afterwards be useful for dredging wherever wanted, in other ports as well.
The removal of the torpedo factory from Woolwich to Greenock is a matter in regard to which we have had a considerable amount of trouble. The torpedo factory itself is progressing very rapidly. It is a somewhat difficult matter to transfer 500 or 600 workmen from Woolwich to Greenock and to find proper housing accommodation for them. Naturally every Government Department would like its men to be well housed. To send men to Greenock without assisting to find proper accommodation for them would be contrary to Admiralty policy, and we have taken the rather unusual course of guaranteeing a portion of the rent of 100 houses which are to be provided by a private company for the habitation of these men. I think we have done everything in our power to make it easy for the men to be removed from Woolwich and placed down comfortably at Greenock. We have taken a lot of trouble and I hope we may succeed in moving them with the least possible inconvenience to themselves. I have briefly adumbrated the chief points, and I shall be very glad to answer any question that may be asked on this Vote.
§ Lord CHARLES BERESFORD
I described the management of our Naval Service by this Government the other day as the most incompetent and the most extravagant we have ever had in this country, and I tried to give proofs of that, but of all their management the worst has been that with reference to docks. The hon. Member (Mr. Lambert) tried to make a great point about the Admiralty giving a bonus to its contractors to hurry up with the contracts both at Portsmouth and Rosyth. Why was that necessary? Because they deliberately delayed carrying out or finishing Rosyth Dock—or beginning it. These docks have always been necessary since you began to have 1150 "Dreadnoughts." They are now giving a bonus to the contractors to try to hurry up these docks which they deliberately delayed. They cannot get out of that. It was bad business, very extravagant for the country, and to a certain extent dangerous if we went to war. I have already said that we have got to have docks before war so that the bottoms of the ships can be cleaned, and that you will not have one ship going four knots less than another. Last year the Admiralty only spent £88,000 on Rosyth out of £160,000 voted. How much of the £263,000 voted this year is the Admiralty going to spend?
§ Mr. LAMBERT
We spend as much as the contractor earns. We cannot spend more. All that we can do is to take a sufficient sum, and if the contractor does not earn up to that amount we do not pay out of this sum more than he earns.
§ Lord CHARLES BERESFORD
That is a most important point. The Admiralty have no right to say that they will finish the dock in a certain time. The Admiralty have laid it down that this dock will be finished at a certain time. I make out that you have £2,862,000 left to spend on Rosyth. The First Lord of the Admiralty assured the House that the Dock will he finished in five years. Therefore, he has to spend £600,000 a year for the next five years. I say he cannot do it, and he has no right to encourage this House and the people of the country to believe that that dock, which is most important for us in the North Sea, for we have no dock there at all at the present, can be finished in the time he states. The right hon. Gentleman says it rests with the contractor. Last year the Admiralty were in the amount spent a long way short of the money voted, and this year they will be in the same position, so that the dock, according to the present rate of progress, will not be finished for eight years.
§ Mr. LAMBERT indicated dissent.
§ Lord CHARLES BERESFORD
You have to spend £600,000 a year in order to finish it in five years. The Admiralty deliberately stopped the building of the dock, and now they take the taxpayers' money and give the contractors a bonus for hurrying up work which was delayed through their own fault in years gone by. The case with respect to Portsmouth Dock is just the same. The Admiralty spent last year £200,000 out of £245,000. I suppose the hon. Member will say the 1151 same thing in regard to that. He is justified in saying it, but that is not my point. I say that you have no right to tell the public that you will finish these docks in a certain time when you cannot do it. It is all through the fault of the Admiralty that these delays have occurred. I make out that at Portsmouth Dock there will be still £915,000 to spend by 1913. The Admiralty will have to spend, besides the £600,000 a year at Rosyth, the further sum of £450,000 a year on Portsmouth Dock. No wonder the Chancellor of the Exchequer is crying when he sees what his estimates will be next year. These Estimates have arrived at their present enormous amount by the carelessness of the Admiralty, because they did not undertake their work properly. If they had looked ahead with ordinary common sense we would not have been in this state now. I believe that to make Portsmouth a proper naval base the basin will have to be increased enormously. Portsmouth will cost alone £6,000,000 to £8,000,000 before the port is made efficient for modern ships of the enormous size and draught that are being built now. With regard to the fairway, it is not a very clever thing to build these big ships without having the fairway open. It is easy to say that the Commander-in-Chief reported that the fairway was silting up, and that the dredgers were employed at something else in the northern part of the harbour. The fairway some years ago was dredged to 30 feet on an average. Now it is 26 to 27 feet, and there is a patch 25 feet between the Spit Buoy and the Bell Buoy. The hon. Member wants to make out that that is safe. It is safe in ordinary weather, but it is not safe at other times, because if a ship is damaged in any way, and is down at the bow or the stern, and cannot steer in the fairway, it might go on that patch. My point is that the patch ought never to have been there. The fairway ought not to have been silted up, and it would not have been if ordinary forethought had been exercised, and if the Admiralty had seen to its being dredged directly it began to silt up. This all means the expenditure of extra public money on account of their want of foresight. The harbour is to be about 34 feet deep. What is the use of having a harbour of that depth if the fairway is at the depth I have described owing to silting up? At spring tides in Portsmouth Harbour you cannot get vessels of the "Dreadnought" class into dock more than three days a 1152 fortnight. The hon. Member tried to make out that it was a great deal more. There is only in Portsmouth Harbour 40 feet, and that is subject to the wind twice a year. If the wind is north-east it cuts the tide afoot, and if it is south-west it only adds 6 inches. This is for ships under normal conditions.
I say that is disgraceful, it is scandalous, that we should have Portsmouth Harbour, the nearest port on the east coast, in a condition in which we have only got one dock for all our "Dreadnoughts." We have got ten at this minute and ten more are building, and they could only get in three days in the fortnight. And it is very much worse than that, because none of these ships can get into the harbour unless they get out their ammunition and coal and oil. Any seaman knows what it is to clear the coal out of the ship. I wish the First Lord of the Admiralty were here, because I want to call him to account. I hope that the hon. Gentleman opposite me will write down all I say. The right hon. Gentleman said, in answer to me a little time ago when I was speaking about this question of the docking of "Dreadnoughts" and how devoid of common-sense and dangerous the existing system might be:—When docking is in contemplation arrangements are made to obtain the necessary draft by not completing with fuel and stores.Nothing that has ever been put into "Punch" is so humorous as that. What are we going to do when arrangements are made for a ship to go into dock? We are to take out all our oil, our coal, and stores. The thing is absurd. It ought never to have happened. It shows at once what I complain of, that there is no forethought and no scheme, and this was because there was no war staff to carry these things out and get ready in time of peace the fighting machines we should require in time of war. It is a most disgraceful thing that you have got in time of peace to clear these ships out of their coal, oil, and ammunition before you can get them into the biggest harbour of the greatest naval base in the whole Empire. That is the position at the present moment. It is all very well to say that there is plenty of water when you have cleared them out, but these ships ought never to have less than three feet under them. The "Prince George" tried to get out of harbour with a foot under her. As she went out she filled up her condensers with sand, and she had to go back to the dockyard for 1153 a long time to get her condensers and bearings cleaned of sand before she could get out again.
Hon. Members will remember the case of the "Gladiator." She was only a 4,000-ton ship. She drew normally twenty-four feet. When she was damaged they could not get her to draw less than thirty-four feet. She was right down on the ground in the basin at thirty-four feet. These heavy ships draw thirty-one feet under their normal conditions, but the point is this, that the ship must draw a big extra draught of water owing to being damaged, and in the case of these heavy ships they might go down thirteen, fifteen, or seventeen feet extra. It is impossible to tell how far they might go down as the result of damage which they would sustain, and such a ship would have to remain at Spithead—I am talking of the next four years—in that damaged condition, and get out all her coals, oil, and ammunition before she could get into harbour at all. And then she would be subject to the wind. You cannot have tugs all around getting her into this big dock if there is any wind, and you have to wait. Can anything be in a more ludicrous position than that? When a ship is damaged you want to get her into dock as quickly as you can, because at a time like that something is always disloyal, either a valve, a bulkhead, or a ventilating shaft, and the ship might have to remain four or five days before you could get into the harbour at all owing to the silting-up of the harbour. There is only one dock which has to be used for these ships that are fitted out, and they have to come in and out very often. I think the "Neptune" has been in four or five times, and has had to be pulled in and pulled out. Look at the expense of that! Look at the extra work entailed on the yard! Look at the delay entailed on the ship that is being made! That is all because these ships were built without any thought at all as to what was necessary in order to make them effective. The "Orion" will not be launched until September, and it will be in and out of that dock until it is finished. There is only the one dock, and in the intervals ships will come from the Fleet. It shows the folly of building ships without having docks to put them into.
Another point on which I desire information is why have we not got a floating crane? We should have a floating 100-ton crane. Suppose that something 1154 goes wrong with one of the 12-inch guns, something of a minor character, but which requires that the gun should be lifted. That ship has first to get out its oil, its coal, and its ammunition at Spithead, and then it has to go up the harbour. It goes in, and there are only two cranes, one of fifty and one of seventy tons, in order to lift this gun for some minor detail. All this has to be done because we have not got a floating crane. The expense is enormous, and the ship is out of action for several days simply because the gun has to be lifted for some minor defect. She is then docked to get the chance of catching the wind because, although the floating dock is promised in two years, this is the only dock we have at Portsmouth, and the ship that is being refitted or being built, or the ship that comes in from the Fleet, is entirely subject to the wind. But if there is a minor defect such as I have described to the Committee, the ship has to go in to get under the shears. All these different points that I have mentioned will have to be looked into. I hope that the hon. Gentleman will tell us something about a floating crane, and that he will at once see that the fairway into the harbour is dredged properly, because it is not a question of safety, as the hon. Gentleman pointed out. Pilots there will take the ship in with a twenty-five-foot patch; but the twenty-five-foot patch ought not to be there, and when a ship is damaged, even a ship like the "Gladiator," it is perfectly liable to go on that twenty-foot patch, because if she draws more water, either forward or aft, than she ought to do or has a list, she cannot steer even if you put tugs around her. I want to call the attention of the Committee to what I can only describe as the disgraceful condition in regard to the docking of these heavy ships. The Government had no right to allow the great delay that has taken place in the building of these docks, and then go and give the contractor an enormous bonus to finish them within the time specified.
§ Mr J. WARD
The speech of the Noble Lord was very interesting, especially when he referred to the want of foresight on the part of the Admiralty in reference to the construction of these works The Civil Lord referred to the difficulties which naturally arise from attempting to build a new dock on an old one. I have no doubt there is considerable difficulty, but anyone going to Portsmouth will see that there was no necessity whatever why the 1155 Admiralty should decide to build a new dock on an old one. There is plenty of space a little higher up, including a lake, and it is absolutely unoccupied save by gulls and other wild birds. The entrance of a dock constructed there no doubt could have been brought down to within fifty yards of the present entrance of the new dock and lock now being constructed. As has been pointed out by experts on both sides, accommodation for these big "Dreadnoughts" will yet be required, and this site will eventually have to be used. The earth which is taken out of the new deck and lock is now being dropped into the middle of the ocean—I suppose to assist the process of silting up to which the Noble Lord referred; I daresay a good deal of it comes back to the fairway again. It does seem strange, even if you did not require this splendid site for the next fifty or 100 years, why you should not use the earth that you are excavating in reclaiming it for increased accommodation. Of course, this is not done because you have not a scheme for further development, looking years ahead instead of living merely from hand to mouth. While it is admitted on both sides of the House that extra dock accommodation is required for this new style of battleship at Portsmouth, yet you are building the present new dock on the old one, largely because the Admiralty have no definite plan with reference to the future development of the great naval base at Portsmouth. I have risen to draw attention to another matter of very great importance from my point of view, namely, the conditions under which the workpeople engaged on these works at Portsmouth are employed. It is not a complaint with reference to the Dock so much as to the Lock—the old part of the contract. I am very pleased that the Civil Lord is in attendance, because I understand he is responsible for what I think I shall be able to prove is an evasion of the Fair Wages Clause passed by this House a year or two ago. The contract for the lock was let, I think, to Messrs. Morrison and Mason, for a sum of about £900,000. The wages paid were very low indeed. The contractor in the first instance paid, I daresay, the proper rate of the locality, as he would have to do, namely 6d. an hour, but after he obtained a certain type of men he paid a lower rate, as in the case of other works he had in different parts of the country. He began to pay in some cases as low as 1156 4½d. and 5d. an hour for work which in the district was paid for at the rate of 6d. per hour. That is admitted. I am very pleased to say that so far as the old contract is concerned it was admitted that it was not within the Fair Wages Clause recently passed by the House of Commons, but under the old terms which practically left the matter of wages to the contractor to decide what he would pay.
§ Mr. J. WARD
That meant that if a sweater paid his men 3½d. an hour or nothing, the contractor would pay his men at the rate of 3½d. an hour or nothing. The word "current" was the whole point in dispute, and so long as anyone was paid a sweating wage that was the current rate.
§ Mr. J. WARD
I believe so far as the discussions of this House were concerned that was undoubtedly the interpretation which was placed on the Fair Wages Clause at that time, among others, by such Members as Mr. Richards and the late Member for Wolverhampton. At any rate this much is clear, that we have signed a contract with the local contractor that 6d. an hour should be the minimum wage to all navvies and labourers employed.
§ Dr. MACNAMARA
The current rate was taken, and my hon. Friend knows that I was at great pains to ascertain what the current rate was.
§ Mr. J. WARD
All I can say is that, so far as our men who work in the locality are concerned, ever since 1896 they have always received 6d. per hour. In addition to that, there were communications from the Corporation stating that they also insisted on 6d. per hour being paid to them. That was the current rate for labourers in the locality. Yet on the interpretation of the Admiralty of the previous Fair Wages Clause in this House, it was not insisted that the contractor should pay it. I am pleased to say that eventually, after a great deal of discussion, a compromise was effected. The Financial Secretary went to Portsmouth, and it was decided that certain classes of 1157 men who could be called navvies should be paid 6d. an hour. Knowing that the old Fair Wages Clause of this House was so ill-conceived as not to fix any particular rate, as a compromise I accepted it, but only for the work which was let to the contractor previous to the passing of the last Fair Wages Clause in this House. My complaint is that we made the compromise on the definite understanding that any new contract which was let should be under the new Fair Wages Clause of this House, and that the local trade union rate of wages should be insisted upon as part of the new contract. The original contract was for £900,000 or thereabouts for a new lock. Since then we have passed in this House the new Fair Wages Clause, which binds the contractor to pay the rate of the locality which is generally adopted, and, therefore, it we can show that there is an agreed rate between the contractors of the locality and ourselves as to what wages should be paid, I take it that the new Fair Wages Clause, as passed by this House, should be accepted, and the labourers engaged on those works should be paid accordingly. If it had not been that the Admiralty had a contractor already there doing work to the extent of £900,000, and if a new contract had been made for this additional work, then it is a moral certainty that the new Clause passed by the House of Commons relating to fair wages in Government contracts would be in that new contract. What has happened is this: that the Government have proceeded to give this old contractor, who made these previous contracts under the old Fair Wages Clause, the new contract for another million of money.
§ Mr. J. WARD
It is getting on that way—£400,000, I believe. I beg the Civil Lord's pardon with reference to that. I meant to have said about half a million, and even that is a big job. That amount of work has been let since the new Fair Wages Clause was passed by this House. I am now given to understand by questions across the floor of this House that while that new contract has been given to the contractor since the last Fair Wages Resolution was passed, it is only the old Fair Wages Resolution that is to apply to the new contract. Therefore, as anyone can see, a large proportion of those who are called labourers will be excluded from the benefits of the Resolution of this House so far as fair wages are concerned. 1158 I confess it looks at first blush almost as if it were a deliberate attempt to evade the Resolution of this House as to fair wages. I wish the Civil Lord to understand that when I first heard that this contract was about to be signed, that is, the second contract or the additional contract, I put a question in this House on the subject. I asked if it was signed, and I was informed that it was not signed, and I also asked would care be taken that the new terms under the new Fair Wages Clause passed by the House of Commons should be included as part of this additional work. The reply was that at the time they did not wish to answer me on the subject so far as details were concerned. The reasons which were given seemed to me to be very good reasons at the time, but in view of the fact that the new Fair Wages Resolution, which gives great benefit to the men employed on works of this description, is not to apply to any of the additional work voted by the House since the Resolution was passed, that in itself does look like an evasion of the Fair Wages Clause.
Supposing in all your building work you were merely to say that the old contract applied in the case of the old contractors, then the new contract would never come under the new Fair Wages Clause, and if you were do so with all the contractors, then the Fair Wages Clause would not apply all round. That is what you are going to say in this case, at all events, that is that the new work is under the old contract, and that therefore the old scale of wages applies even though the work has been sanctioned and passed by the Admiralty since the last Fair Wages Clause was passed. I am bound to say that that looks like an attempted evasion of the Resolution of the House upon this particular subject. I was in Portsmouth a fortnight ago, and I am informed that the conditions that the Parliamentary Secretary and myself agreed upon with reference to certain classes of workmen there are not being complied with, and that men whom he and I agreed were to receive a certain wage have been dismissed for asking for that very wage which we agreed upon. I am sure if I call the direct attention of the Parliamentary Secretary to the Admiralty to the specific cases that he would investigate them, and I hope that they will be rectified. With reference to Rosyth, the Noble Lord (Lord C. Beresford) has complained that it is not going on as fast as it ought to. The Civil Lord himself declared that they had some 1159 hundred and odd thousand pounds which had been set aside for work connected with the naval base there, and that about £75,000 was the only sum that had been expended. I understand that the grievance of the Noble Lord is that this money is not being spent, and he suggests that it is because the docks were not commenced soon enough. There is another and a better reason, as I think the Noble Lord will admit when I mention it. There is not the slightest doubt that so far as space and working conditions are concerned that the contractors could get at least three to four thousand men on those works if they wanted. I do not suppose that any engineering expert would pretend for one moment that the docks could not be completed even now well within the contract time.
§ Mr. J. WARD
I have not the slightest doubt of the fact that they could be, but I doubt whether they will be. I am exactly of the opinion of the Noble Lord opposite, but for an entirely different reason. I have put questions backward and forward in this House I suppose scores of them, until I am nearly tired of them, with reference to the housing accommodation of the men there. As a matter of fact, no man can get lodgings, that is if he is going to take his wife and family with him, within miles of the place. Although there is any amount of vacant land on which houses could be erected quite near and belonging to the Government, the Government excuse themselves by saying that they have set aside six acres of Government land on which the contractors can build accommodation for the men if they choose to do so. As these contracts only last four or five years naturally the contractors are not going to build houses on Government property unless they know whether the Government are going to take possession of them when the works are completed, and so they merely salve their consciences by offering those acres of land to the contractors, knowing very well that under the conditions they could not use them to build anything like decent housing accommodation for the men.
I do not know whether either of the representatives of the Admiralty know that that is the case, but anyone connected with public works and buildings knows that contractors would not think of put- 1160 ting up anything like permanent decent buildings on Government property which they would be able to use for only four or five years, and then have to pull them down or give them to the Government. Therefore, the offer of Government land to the contractors for the housing of the men is an absolute farce. The offices of the Navvies' Union is inundated with letters from men in all parts of the country who have been to Rosyth and found it impossible to obtain accommodation for themselves and their families. They can get lodgings about twenty in a room at Inverkeithing, and also at Dunfermline, but otherwise there is no accommodation whatever. It is true that quite recently a huge barracks has been built accommodating 400 or 500 men; but is that the kind of accommodation that the Admiralty want? Do they want to destroy absolutely the domestic life of 4,000 of 5,000 men? When the Civil Lord goes to Rosyth, the contractors will be able to tell him that hundreds and possibly thousands of the best men have worked there for a week or a fortnight, but, finding it absolutely impossible to obtain accommodation for their families, they have been obliged to seek work elsewhere. That is the reason why as much work as ought to have been done has not been done on these works during the last year. There is ample space for the employment of thousands of men, and the works are in such a condition that they could be proceeded with at full speed and completed in an incredibly short time, if only proper accommodation was provided for the men in the locality.
There is, however, an additional reason. We had a whole night's Debate with reference to the housing of workmen on public works, and we were given a promise. If promises would improve conditions, the navvy population would be living in an El Dorado or Arcadia; but we get nothing beyond promises. Here is a great work, with plenty of land at the disposal of the Government, but no effort whatever is made to provide housing accommodation for the people. When the docks are completed there must be an immense number of Government workmen transferred there permanently for whom housing accommodation will have to be provided. Are the Admiralty relying absolutely upon private enterprise? If so, they are making a great mistake, and a very irksome period is in store for the men employed on the work. 1161 Such a condition of affairs ought not to prevail. I have asked times without number what kind of conditions the Admiralty intended to impose in the contract with reference to fair wages, seeing that there are no wages paid within nine miles which could be pointed to as being fair. I thought that some rate ought to be fixed, such as 6d. an hour for navvies, as has been done in the case of Portsmouth, and I suggested that it should be decided before the contract was let. Some local men who have been there making roads have employed farm labourers from the locality, and paid them in some cases, I believe, as much as 3d. an hour, with the result that the present contractors declare that when they pay 5d., or 1d. under the proper rate, they are really doing better than anyone has done there before. This is not carrying out the decision of the House of Commons that fair wages should be paid, and there is considerable grievance on the part of the men. Some minimum ought to have been fixed for work of this description. All the Government contractors are not paying the same rate. One firm is paying its navvies 5d. an hour, another 5½d., and another 6d. But you may take it for granted that the fifteen or sixteen contractors who form the ring for these great Government works and largely share the work between them are not going to pay 6d an hour if they can get out of it. We rely upon the Department to see that these grievances are real. If some rectification of the wages and working conditions is not considered I should not be surprised if the work is considerably delayed by the possibility of trouble in the district. There is a bonus offered to the contractors to complete the work in less than the contract time. I think it is £650 a week in the case of Portsmouth and £400 in the case of Rosyth.
§ Mr. J. WARD
Just think of it: thousands of men with the most miserable housing accommodation, while a bonus of £900 a week is offered to the contractor, who could get the men there, carry on the work as fast as he pleased, and get it done quite easily within the next three years, and possibly in less time than that, if only decent housing accommodation were provided and proper wages paid! I make these observations because I think it is nearly time that these matters were considered. Not only is it the wages, not 1162 only is it the house accommodation, but I will ask the Financial Secretary whether he has any record, or whether he can get from any of the contractors who sit in this House a record, of work ever started before involving nearly £1,000,000, and possibly before it is finished £2,000,000 or £3,000,000—I refer to Rosyth—in which the contractor has ever, before starting, not prepared hospital accommodation for accidents? No, you go to a place like the Manchester Ship Canal; there the contractors proceeded at the beginning of affairs to do what I have indicated. I dare say the company who let the work insisted upon the contractors making proper provision to meet accidents. I dare say most companies do. It is only when it comes to a Government Department that no mortal provision is made by contractors for this purpose. These men have to be jolted four miles before they can get any accommodation. Men have been very seriously injured—very seriously interfered with. There is no doubt about it—not the slightest! I am going there myself next week to see. We have an agent there at the present time, and I do assure the hon. Gentleman, as a matter of fact, that there is no accommodation within anything like a reasonable distance, and accidents at works of this description are always occurring. It does not matter how carefully you conduct these works, you must have a largish number of accidents, serious and otherwise. I believe within your Portsmouth works at the present time serious accidents have already numbered some thirty or forty, with two or three fatal accidents. Well, then, I shall ask for the figures, seeing that the particulars have been sent to me to give to this House. There have been either two or three fatal accidents anyhow at the Portsmouth works. There have been accidents of a very serious character at Rosyth. But nothing whatever has been done by the Government to say anything to the contractor concerned. Evidently when contractors are working for the Government they do not think it necessary to make provision of this description. If they were working for a private company or a corporation, these would insist upon this accommodation being provided—probably in the contract. These are grievances which seriously affect the men, and which hampers the contractors in getting the best men there for the works. Therefore, from the point of view of the public interest, as well as 1163 that of the interests of these men I hope that the Admiralty will thoroughly investigate the statements which I have made.
§ Dr. MACNAMARA
Navvies' work is very hard, and very often performed under very hard conditions, and we all, therefore, I am certain, have listened sympathetically to what the hon. Gentleman has said, and to any plea put forward on the navvies' behalf, but I think the hon. Gentleman has spoken a little too heatedly.
§ Dr. MACNAMARA
No doubt, but take the case under the old Fair Wages Clause at the early part of the Portsmouth work: as a matter of fact, the rate paid was that current for competent men in the district. I can say as Financial Secretary, and I am certain that the Civil Lord will agree, that under that old form of contract we endeavoured to ascertain the rate paid by taking a number of employers and so getting a conspectus of what was the current rate. My hon. Friend knows that that was done, and that considerable pains were taken to carry out the spirit as well as the letter of the old Fair Wages Clause. I say, after taking all the circumstances of my hon. Friend's complaint into account that there is no case. I went down personally, and was very glad to examine the work and, so far as I was able, see what the men did. On the occasion referred to I saw the contractor and made an appeal to him in a number of cases without reference to the contract to give 6d. an hour to the men. This could not probably have been enforced, but my suggestion was accepted by the contractor, and personally I am very much obliged to him for having accepted my view—which was unofficial.
As to the question of extended contracts, the hon. Gentleman says: "Why do not you put them under the new Fair Wages Clause?" The answer to that is given in a reply which my right hon. Friend the First Lord of the Admiralty gave to the hon. Gentleman on 30th March:—Mr. McKenna: It was not possible to invite tenders for the dry dock at Portsmouth, and terms for its execution have been arranged with the contractors for the new lock on the general basis of their existing contract. The rates of wages must therefore he governed by the existing contract; but such work as the Admiralty find to be of a nature that entitles the men to the 6d. an hour rate will be paid for at that rate, as was arranged under the existing contract after investigation with my hon. Friend's assistance last year." [OFFICIAL REPORT, 30th March, 1910, col. 1293.]1164 Although the extended part is under the old fair wages contract, yet, according to the answer, such men as were getting 6d. an hour will get it under the extended contract.
§ Mr. J. WARD
My case is this, that there ought to be no old contract. You are making a new contract with labouring work and the men should be entitled to 6d. an hour.
§ Dr. MACNAMARA
If we were making a new contract we would put in the new Fair Wages Clause and we would have to see that the contractors carried out the purpose of that clause, but being an extension of the existing contract there was on obligation on the contractor but to give the men the same rate that he paid under the old Fair Wages Clause. He has given 6d. if they are doing similar work, the figure to which they have raised it on the representation of my hon. Friend and myself. The contractor there was dealing with the old Fair Wages Clause. I would be very glad to defer to my hon. Friend's views if I could, but I cannot hold out any hope that in this new work the new Fair Wages Clause is to be put in operation. Rosyth, also, is not under the new Fair Wages Clause. If it were so, if there is no rate of wages in the district you have to take the rate in the nearest similar locality. Rosyth contract was signed on 1st March, 1909, when the old Fair Wages Clause was in existence. If my hon. Friend will refer to his own Friends he will find that the new Fair Wages Clause of which I very much approve could not have been put into the Rosyth contract.
My hon. Friend referred to the want of hospital accommodation at Rosyth. I went very closely into this matter with the contractor. I went down there specially for the purpose and I found that there is first aid and that there is a hospital, it may be five miles away. My hon. Friend spoke of the injured men being jolted away over roads. As a matter of fact the injured man about whom he spoke to me was treated to first aid and then conveyed in a motor car to the hospital. When any considerable number of men have got to the works the question will arise whether the contractor ought not to consider—and here I am talking of smoothing that is outside the contract, and is not part of the contract—whether provision should not be made that persons injured should be treated on the spot.
§ Dr. MACNAMARA
I found the contractor's representative was very willing to do everything which was pointed out to him, and I have no doubt that if it is suggested to him that some provision should be made for greater assistance upon the spot he will give it every consideration. Then, with regard to the housing. The contractor has got six acres of ground. There is nothing in the contract to compel the firm to provide housing accommodation, but these six acres of land are placed at their disposal and they cannot use it for anything else. No doubt up to the present effort has been made to meet the needs of the men as they come there by private enterprise. I inspected the accommodation and I went into the big building to which my hon. Friend refers. I shall make personal representations again. I will go there for the purpose, and, although the contract lays no obligation, we, as a great public authority, cannot wash our hands of all responsibility in connection with the welfare of these men. I will go into this matter, although there is nothing in the contract which would compel the firm to put up any housing except, as I say, that they cannot use the six acres of land for any other purpose. I must say, on behalf of the contractors that the representative of the firm seems to me to be a man anxious to deal sympathetically with those in his employment. I do not want to carry this too far, but I was greatly pleased, and so, I am sure, was the Civil Lord, at the ready way in which he accepted any suggestion we made to him. I wish now to reply to the criticisms made by the Noble Lord the Member for Portsmouth. I understand he has now gone the length of describing the Admiralty as both incompetent and extravagant.
§ Dr. MACNAMARA
"The most extravagant and incompetent I have ever known." All the things we have done ought not to have been done, and all the things we have left undone ought to have been done. I do not want to go into any recriminations with regard to Rosyth, but the charge of having deliberately delayed Rosyth has so often been levelled against us that without importing any spirit of recrimination into it, there are one or two comments I should like to make. First of 1166 all as to our having deliberately and to the public danger delayed Rosyth. But before coming to that, I was very glad to hear the Noble Lord say we have got the ships although he said we have not got the docks. At all events, the first part of his statement, "We have got the ships," is a most admirable one. That is the first time I ever heard the Noble Lord say we have got the ships. He has told us also we have got the men, and now let me tell him, here we are about to get the docks. I do not know whether the Noble Lord is familiar with the history of Rosyth. I want to say one or two words which will throw light upon the matter. So far back as 12th March, 1900, a Committee called the Berthing Committee was appointed to go into the whole question of dock accommodation for berthing long ships and cruisers. That Committee reported on 31st January, 1902—eight years ago—and they reported a serious deficiency of berthing accommodation for those very long ships. They considered the question of whether you could provide that berthing accommodation by any extension of the existing docks, or whether you would require absolutely new docks, and they suggested it would be desirable probably to provide another naval establishment altogether, and they did that so far back as 1902. What follows that? The main purchase of land took place in 1903. Certain other smaller purchases were made in November, 1903, and in April, 1904, the final purchase took place. The late Civil Lord of the Admiralty knows that in 1904 a scheme was prepared at the Admiralty for the establishment of a naval base on a very large scale indeed. At that point there was a drastic change in the policy, and may I point out that it was not our policy. There was the proposal for the concentration of the Fleet and for the scrapping of a very large number of vessels, and that scheme appeared to have made a considerable change of policy. All the particulars of that scheme were set out in the Cawdor Memorandum of 1905. This far-reaching scheme was described by the Leader of the Opposition as "a courageous stroke of the pen." That changed the whole condition of affairs as to what was considered necessary in the minds of those who were responsible. A revised scheme was adopted on a smaller scale, which was no doubt capable of ultimate expansion, and this was in August, 1905, five years after the appointment of the Berthing Committee. If we are to go into the question of the 1167 charge of deliberate delay, may I point out that instructions were then issued that a definite scheme was to be prepared on a smaller scale, and therefore I do not think it lies in the mouth of the supporters of the late Administration in view of these facts to charge us with deliberate delay in this matter. We had the findings of the Berthing Committee in 1902 and the land was completely purchased in 1904. This changed scheme, into the merits of which I will not go, was finally adopted in 1905. In the year 1903–4 the expenditure on Rosyth under the late Administration was £147,719, of which £142,500 was for land, which left practically nothing at all for any other object. In 1904–5 the expenditure at Rosyth was £2,842, of which £1,440 was for land and £1,402 for operations in connection with the scheme. In 1905–6, the last year of the late Administration, the expenditure at Rosyth was £5,544. I admit if national needs change, and they do change from time to time, it is no particular argument to say, "Look what you spent in 1904, 1905, and 1906," but I am entitled to reply when we are charged with deliberate delay in this matter. Up to the year 1905–6, when the late Administration gave up office, the expenditure was £156,105, of which £143,957 was for land. In view of these facts I confess that I listen with some amount of objection to this constant charge of delay in connection with the work at Rosyth. In 1906–7 the expenditure was £5,663; in 1907–8, 21,887; 1908–9, £12,108; 1909–10, £72,074; 1910–11, the Estimate is £263,000. The Noble Lord opposite asks what is the use of voting £263,000 for Rosyth, and he says that, judging from experience in the past, you will have to surrender a lot of this money, and it is a mere paper figure. May I point out that the circumstances are now totally different, because the contract was signed on the 1st March, 1909, and the contractor will be paid the sum he will earn, and I should say he will go very far towards earning the provision which has been made in the Estimate. The total value of the contract is about £2,000,000. The hon. Member for Stoke complains that we propose to pay a bonus for every week's acceleration of the contract, but we have side by side with that provision a penalty for delay at the same rate. Section 1 of the contract gives the date of completion as four and a half years—that is, on the 1st September, 1913. The date of completion laid down in 1168 Section 2 is the 1st March, 1916, and I am inclined to think that the work will be finished much earlier. I do not wish to indulge in recriminations, but when we are charged with deliberate delay in this matter I think it only right to point out the extraordinary delay which took place during the early years in connection with the work at Rosyth by the party sitting opposite, who delayed the carrying out of this scheme, and ultimately left office without making anything like reasonable progress with the scheme. I am inclined to believe that, if the Noble Lord had been in the House at that time, he would have levelled precisely the same criticism against those with whom he now sits.
§ Dr. MACNAMARA
At any rate, I do not think it is quite fair to charge us with undue delay. Certainly all the provision we have made is in the direction of securing the most expeditious execution of this contract, and I think I was entitled to call attention to the remarkable fact that those who are charging the Government with delay are those who, having prepared a scheme, left it in the way I have tried to describe quite fairly to the Committee.
§ Mr. ARTHUR LEE moved to reduce the Vote by £100.
§ Really, after the extraordinary speech, or, at any rate, the latter part of the speech to which we have just listened, I feel bound to intervene, because the hon. Gentleman opposite, who is usually fair in his methods of Debate, has really indulged in most extraordinary misrepresentations with regard to the history of Rosyth. I do not know, but he appears to have been nettled by some remarks made by my Noble and Gallant Friend (Lord C. Beresford), which I did not happen to hear, and which seemed to have led him on to make a series—I am quite sure they must be unintentional—of gross mis-statements with regard to what transpired under the late Board of Admiralty on this very question of the building of Rosyth Docks. I have taken down his various statements, and I will try to deal with them in order. He began, quite rightly, by saying the Committee's Report dates from 1902. The Reports of that Committee had to be considered by the Board of Admiralty. They were considered very rapidly, and the question of the purchase of a site had to be taken in hand. No one knows better 1169 than the hon. Gentleman how long these negotiations for the purchase of land take, but, as a matter of fact, the purchase was completed by April, 1904. That comes into the actual time when I was in charge of the Works Department. I therefore speak from actual knowledge of what occurred, and not from hearsay, which the hon. Gentleman is bound to do.
§ In 1904, when the land was being purchased, as is always the case as regards every building scheme, the various Departments of the Admiralty were consulted. They were told to send in a full statement of their ideal requirement having regard to the modern naval race; and, in view of the unfortunate experience of the Admiralty in the past, which had led them so often to lay out these bases on too small a scale, with the result that if any extensions had to be taken in hand in later years great difficulties had to he overcome and great expense incurred, they were instructed to lay out the general plan in such a way that if future extensions, which no man could foresee, were necessary, none of the existing works should have to be destroyed or should be in the way of those subsequent extensions. That was done in 1904. A sketch was drawn out of a naval base which would contain everything that could be possibly required which the prophets of the Admiralty at that time could foresee. It was never intended to build a base on that scale. That is a misconception which exists in the hon. Gentleman's mind, and which he has repeatedly put before the House and the country during the last few years. There was no intention whatever of starting to build a base upon the scale suggested by the hon. Gentleman opposite. I go further, and say from that point there was no avoidable delay whatever. After all, the preparation of a scheme of that kind takes some time. The present Superintending Engineer, Colonel S. H. Exham, was sent to the Continent to study all the latest developments of foreign dockyards. He had to make his Report. He came hack, and the scheme was drawn up, as the hon. Gentleman admits, in August, 1905, a very short time before the late Government went out of office. As soon as it was drawn up it was approved by the Board of Admiralty, and steps were at once taken to get out the necessary drawings in order to enable the contract to be made on the nearest possible date. At the time I left the Admiralty, in December, 1905, the scheme was advanced to such a point, and all 1170 arrangements were made that the contract could be actually let by 1st June, 1906. It will be seen there was no avoidable delay up to that time.
§ Then the change of Government came at the end of 1905. I do not want to make this a party charge, but the hon Gentleman himself did so a few moments ago. He said the present Government is not responsible for any delay, and that the delay was due to the late Government. I have shown that up to the time when we left office we had pushed as steadily on with this scheme as it reasonably could be pushed on, and we had made all the arrangements for letting the contract on 1st June, and had actually included in the Draft Estimates a large provision for the ensuing year. That provision was struck out.
§ Mr. LEE
The total amount, if I remember rightly, which was put down for the contract was £1,000,000, but the amount for 1905–6 was bound to be small because the contract could not be let before 1st June, 1906. The Civil Lord has said again and again in defence of their own delay that it is impossible to spend very much in the first year of a contract. Did the hon. Member opposite think he was making a debating point and scoring a cheap party point by saying, "How much did you spend in 1904–5–6?" Who has ever heard of a Government Department or any sane individual spending money upon a job until the contract was let for it? How could you possibly spend money beforehand? It is absurd. The hon. Member knows just as well as I do that the small amount of money over and above the amount of the purchase of the land that we spent was simply and solely for the small staff on the spot who were working out the plans. Really it is hardly worthy of him to try and make a point of that description and to try and make out the Government were not spending money on the work but were dawdling, when the contract could not be let until six months after they had left office. Even if he had established his point and proved, as he failed to do, that the late Government neglected their duty in this matter, is that any excuse for the present Government going on delaying this work year after year? They only let the contract on 1st March, 1909. What were they doing all those three and a half years? 1171 They finally produced their scheme, and to all intents and purposes it is precisely the same plan we had drawn up before we left office. I would ask the Committee to remember that at the time the late Government left office there was no fleet of "Dreadnoughts" in existence. The idea of a "Dreadnought" had only just been evolved. The "Dreadnought "herself had only just been laid down, and there was not that same urgent need for immediate accommodation on the East Coast that has existed during the time of the present Government. Before that we had a dock at Chatham and several at Portsmouth capable of taking the largest ships in existence at that time. Yet the Government come in, make themselves responsible for a large programme—not as large as it should be—of ships for which no dock accommodation exists. They take over a plan which was complete in all its essentials, and a contract which could have been let six months after they Came into office, yet they dawdle on year after year until, in March, 1909, they finally screw up their courage to sticking point and produce practically the same scheme. Yet the hon. Gentleman has the face to come down here to-night and accuse us of having been responsible for all this delay. The point the hon. Member has made is really a very small one. Possibly he only brought it forward in order to draw attention off the neglect which the Government has shown generally in this matter of dock accommodation. At any rate, I do not know what his motive was.
§ Dr. MACNAMARA
I replied to a statement by the Noble Lord the Member for Portsmouth that this was the most incompetent Admiralty ever known, particularly with regard to docks.
§ Dr. MACNAMARA
It was said I had made gross misstatements. I have listened with every care and with great attention to the hon. Gentleman's speech, and I have not discovered proof of any one gross misstatement.
§ Mr. LEE
If the hon. Gentleman has not gathered from what I said that I nave demonstrated clearly—I said the misstatements must obviously have been unintentional, but they were misstatements in fact—and I have shown by the dates from my own personal knowledge—I was in charge of the Works Department at that time—I think I have completely disproved the somewhat ridiculous charge he brought against the late Board of Admiralty. With regard to the bigger question of general neglect, although I did not hear my Noble Friend's speech, yet from what I gather from the brief quotation which the hon. Gentleman has culled from it, I should say he was perfectly justified. I think there is no feature of the Admiralty's naval policy which is more open to attack and condemnation than their neglect in this matter of dock accommodation. Here we shall have in the near future a fleet of twenty "Dreadnoughts," the headquarters of which have been, by the Admiralty themselves, established on the East Coast; and yet on the whole of that East Coast by the time these twenty ships are completed there will only be one dock ready capable of accommodating them. There is, I am aware, one other dock, the Hebburn, about which there has been some controversy. The First Lord of the Admiralty, I think, said, about a year ago, that that dock could not be used by "Dreadnoughts" at normal draught, and he tried to explain that that did not affect the question, because if a ship wished to use it it could take out its stores and guns. Imagine a ship in war time, in urgent need of docking, coming to the mouth of the Hebburn, possibly in a half-sinking condition, and being told by the First Lord, "Take out your stores and extra weight in order to make yourself light enough to go into that dock." Surely that dock for use in war time would be really out of the question, and the only dock available on the East Coast for all the ships completed will be the one floating dock which the Admiralty has now under construction, and which, I understand, is to be placed somewhere on the Medway. The docks at Rosyth will not be ready till 1914.
§ Mr. LEE
That makes it all the worse. If the Government had proceeded with the Rosyth scheme as bequeathed to them by the late Government in 1906, these docks might have been ready three years earlier. But even now, as I have pointed out, the 1173 Government are proceeding with this work in a leisurely fashion. We had a speech just now from the hon. Member for Stoke, who, speaking with considerable experience of the number of men that could be employed on work of this description, stated clearly there could be thousands of men engaged if only the Admiralty made the necessary arrangements. But they have not done so, they have chosen to defer their liabilities year after year and to pile them up to a point so that, according to my Noble and Gallant Friend's figures, which I believe are quite accurate in future years you will have to find an enormous instalment—7£600,000 in the case of Rosyth—if it is to be finished by contract time, and if that contract time is to be shortened, as the Admiralty profess to be anxious it shall be, the future instalment will have to be even greater. The only result of this theory which the Admiralty put forward that we in the past were wrong in building works out of loans whereas they intend to pay for them out of the Estimates of the year, is that they have not paid for them out of the Estimates for the year but they have simply deferred the liability in the hope that these enormous instalments will not fall to be paid while they are in office. I think I have dealt at sufficient length with the charge made by the hon. Gentleman opposite—as far as I am concerned an entirely unprovoked charge, which I strongly resent, because it deals with the period when I was myself responsible for this question of works. I know, from actual experience, the facts he laid before the House were based entirely on a misapprehension.
One other point I have to draw attention to, and that is in regard to Rosyth. It is in the nature of a question which I addressed to the First Lord of the Admiralty as to the care and responsibility for these works. I have no direct knowledge of this matter, and I should like to assure the right hon. Gentleman that, so far as I am concerned, I have had no communication, direct or indirect, with any official concerned. But I have heard a rumour that it is proposed to make a change in the control of these works and to either retire or remove the extremely competent officer who has been in charge of the work from its very inception, and who knows far more about it than any other officer of the Department can possibly do. I shall be very glad indeed if the right hon. Gentleman can tell us 1174 whether it is true that the officer who has been in charge throughout is no longer to be allowed to remain there, and, if so, why, because it seems for a work of this description of the first importance, admitted by the Admiralty to be a job which should be pushed on with all possible speed, that to swop horses when crossing the stream is not likely to conduce either to speed or to the efficiency of the work? There are many other questions I could raise with regard to this matter of docks, but I want to give the First Lord of the Admiralty an opportunity of replying. In view of the speech which has been made by the hon. Gentleman opposite, and the absolutely unfounded and unjustifiable charges which he has made, in regard to which we ought to have some further explanation, I beg to move that this Vote be reduced by £100.
§ Sir WILLIAM GELDER
May I very briefly support the appeal which has been made by the hon. and gallant Member for Portsmouth (Lord C. Beresford) in respect of increased dock accommodation on the East Coast? I am not going to attempt to follow his criticism in respect to Portsmouth or Rosyth—I do not know either of those two places sufficiently well—but, it does appear to me, if his statements with respect to Portsmouth are correct, there is need that some inquiry should be made in respect to the depth of water which is available for "Dreadnoughts" at the present time. My object is, however, to emphasise his appeal in respect to dry docks on the East Coast. There is a distance of possibly 400 miles between these centres, Rosyth and Portsmouth, and we are told that in the future the chief ground of the manœuvring of the Navy will be in the North Sea. We are told that is the danger spot, that is the zone where operations will take place. It is thought by many people that the distance of those two places from each other is too far for a ship to travel and a convoy to take a ship in case of disablement. Only the other day a very influential deputation waited upon the First Lord of the Admiralty. It was a deputation composed of the Associated Chambers of Commerce—a body of gentlemen whom we are all aware have great commercial responsibilities and undertakings, and whose opinion, I think, ought to be very carefully considered by the Board of Admiralty. The deputation consisted of representatives from the Tyne and the Northern ports, from the Humber ports, from Liver- 1175 pool, Manchester, Leeds and district, Sheffield and the Midlands, so that the Committee will see that it was a very important one. They waited upon the First Lord in order to present the case in respect to the necessity for increased dry dock accommodation on the East Coast, but I am sorry to say they got very little in return for their pains for waiting upon the right hon. Gentleman. He sympathised with them, but that was the extent to which he would go. There was no promise of any kind that he would afford any means to help forward this very important matter.
The Tyne people presented their case; they thought they had a suitable place for the provision of a dry dock of a sufficient depth to take "Dreadnoughts," but the First Lord told them that the Tyne was not suitable—the river was too narrow and congested—and although they had plenty of skilled labour there in the shape of engineers yet they need not hope that the Tyne would be a suitable place for a naval base. Then the right hon. Gentleman came to the Humber, and he had not quite the same answer in regard to it. He did not say anything about the depth of the water, because there is a sufficient depth of water, and sufficient area to receive a fleet, but he said that the Humber was not a naval engineering centre of such magnitude as would justify him in considering the proposal. I maintain that if a shipyard is built at any point there is always sufficient labour to be obtained in the open market if there is a demand for it, and I go a little further than that, and I would point out to the First Lord that there is a great amount of engineering skilled labour at the Humber ports, amounting to several thousands of men, which number can be augmented at any time should the occasion require. The First Lord then said that so far as he was concerned he should be very glad—he would be only too happy—to tell the deputation that the Admiralty had it in prospect to build a large dock on the Tyne, although he had said before the Tyne was not quite suitable, and neither was the Humber, only in regard to the latter he said that there was not the right supply of labour. He would be very glad, he said, to tell the deputation that the docks should be built at these two important centres, providing the House could be prevailed upon to give him the warrant—the authority—by which he would be sure to get a sufficient Vote from the House to 1176 carry out these objects. I have here what he said:—He would be happy to build a large dock on the Tyne and another on the Humber, but he would have in that case to answer for them to the critics, who would want to know whether, from the point of naval strategy, his proposals were the best his advisers could put before him.I am quite sure of this, that, although there may be a difference of opinion as to whether we ought to have an increased number of "Dreadnoughts," even those who prefer peace on this side of the House will admit that if an increased number of "Dreadnoughts" have to be built, we ought to have sufficient docking accommodation for them; and, speaking for myself, I would even sooner see one "Dreadnought" less, and three or four docks erected to receive a damaged "Dreadnought." However many "Dreadnoughts" we have, if a war takes place, and they are damaged, they will be practically of no use—worse than useless—and a possible source of danger finless we have proper repairing bases at command, not 400 miles off, but at the nearest point to double back to—on the east coast—not at Portsmouth, not at Rosyth, but near to the place where any naval engagement may take place.
§ Mr. McKENNA
With regard to the Humber, I am unable to add anything to what I said before. In the interest of historical accuracy I should like to remind the hon. Gentleman (Mr. Lee) of what happened with regard to Rosyth and what is recorded upon the Statutes of Parliament. In the Naval Works Act of 1903 the Rosyth scheme figures, and a sum of £200,000 was taken to be expended in the year 1903–4 and 1904–5. A footnote as to that states:—This is the total sum only, and does not represent the total estimated cost.
§ Mr. McKENNA
No, it was more than that. Already in 1903 in the Naval Works Act the late Government had the Rosyth scheme before them and they had to spend £200,000 in the ensuing two years. In 1905 they introduced another Naval Works Loans Act. There again we find: "Naval establishment at Rosyth, £200,000."That £200,000 had not been expended in those two years. In 1905 a considerable proportion of it still remained to be expended, and we find then this footnote:—These figures refer to the preliminary works only. Subsequent expenditure will be charged in Navy Votes.So that as to the first point which the hon. Gentleman makes that the result of 1177 our transferring this scheme to the Navy Votes has caused delay, it was not we who transferred it to the Navy Vote, but the hon. Member's own Government. As to the second point he makes, with regard to inordinate delay, the scheme was already introduced in 1903, and by 1905 they had not then expended the £200,000 for preliminary work. The fact is, and it, is common knowledge, that after the introduction of the Rosyth scheme it was held up by both Governments in succession, because neither Government was fully satisfied that it was a proper scheme to undertake. The holding up by the new Government which came in in 1906 was only a continuation of the policy of the previous Government, and the two Statutes to which I refer are a sufficient confirmation of the truth of what I say.
§ Mr. LEE
The right hon. Gentleman has not made his case any better in trying to stand behind the mis-statement of the case made by the Secretary for the Admiralty. He knows very well that the £200,000 referred to in the Naval Works Acts was for the purchase of the land, for preliminary services, and for the making of the plans.
And it being after Ten of the clock, the Chairman proceeded, pursuant to Standing Order No. 15, to put forthwith the Question necessary to dispose of the Vote under discussion.
§ Question put, "That the reduced sum of £2,995,300 be granted for said Service."
§ The Committee divided: Ayes, 199; Noes, 276.1181
|Division No. 108.]||AYES.||[10.0 p.m.|
|Anson, Sir William Reynell||Du Cros, Arthur P. (Hastings)||Jackson, Sir J. (Devonport)|
|Arbuthnot, G. A.||Duke, H. E.||Jackson, John A. (Whitehaven)|
|Archer-Shee, Major M.||Dunn, Sir W. H. (Southwark)||Jardine, E. (Somerset, E.)|
|Arkwright, John Stanhope||Eyres-Monsell, B. M.||Jessel, Captain H. M.|
|Ashley, W. W.||Faber, George Denison (Clapham)||Kerry, Earl of|
|Attenborough, W. A.||Faber, Capt. W. V. (Hants, W.)||Keswick, William|
|Begot, Captain J.||Falle, B. G.||Kimber, Sir Henry|
|Baker, Sir R. L. (Dorset, N.)||Fell, Arthur||King, Sir Henry Seymour (Hull)|
|Balcarres, Lord||Fisher, W. Hayes||Kinloch-Cooke, Sir Clement|
|Baldwin, Stanley||Fitzroy, Hon. E. A.||Knight, Capt. Eric Ayshford|
|Banbury, Sir Frederick George||Flannery, Sir J. Fortescue||Lane-Fox, G. R.|
|Banner, John S. Harmood-||Fleming, Valentine||Law, Andrew Bonar (Dulwich)|
|Barnston, H.||Fletcher, J S.||Lawson, Hon. Harry|
|Barrie, H. T. (Londonderry, N.)||Forster, Henry William||Lee, Arthur H.|
|Bathurst, Hon. A. B. (Glouc., E.)||Foster, H. S. (Suffolk, N.)||Lewisham, Viscount|
|Bathurst, Charles (Wilts, Wilton)||Foster, J. K. (Coventry)||Llewelyn, Venables|
|Beach, Hon. Michael Hugh Hicks||Foster, P. S. (Warwick, S.W.)||Lloyd, G. A.|
|Benn, I. H. (Greenwich)||Gardner, Ernest||Lockyer-Lampson, G. (Salisbury)|
|Beresford, Lord C.||Gastrell, Major W. H.||Locker-Lampson, O. (Ramsay)|
|Boyton, J.||Gibbs, G. A.||Long, Rt. Hon. Walter|
|Brackenbury, H. L.||Gilmour, Captain J.||Lonsdale, John Brownlee|
|Brassey, H. L. C. (N'thamptonshire, N.)||Goldman, C. S.||Lowe, Sir F. W. (Birm., Edgbaston)|
|Bridgeman, W. Clive||Goldsmith, Frank||Lyttelton, Rt. Hon. A. (Hanover Sq.)|
|Brotherton, Edward Allen||Goulding, Edward Alfred||Lyttelton, Hon. J. C. (Droitwich)|
|Bull, Sir William James||Grant, J. A.||MacCaw, Wm. J. MacGeagh|
|Burdett-Coutts, W.||Greene, W. R.||Mackinder, H. J.|
|Butcher, J. G. (York)||Gretton, John||Macmaster, Donald|
|Butcher, S. H. (Cambridge Univ.)||Guinness, Hon. W. E.||Magnus, Sir Philip|
|Campion, W. R.||Haddock, George Bahr||Mallaby-Deeley, Harry|
|Carlile, E. Hildred||Hall, D. B. (Isle of Wight)||Mason, J. F.|
|Castlereagh, Viscount||Hall, E. Marshall (Toxteth)||Mildmay, Francis Bingham|
|Cator, John||Hambro, Angus Valdemar||Mills, Hon. Charles Thomas|
|Cautley, H. S.||Homersley, A. St. George||Mitchell, William Foot|
|Cave, George||Hamilton, Lord C. J. (Kensington, S.)||Morpeth, Viscount|
|Cecil, Evelyn (Aston Manor)||Hamilton, Marquess of (Londonderry)||Morrison, Captain J. A.|
|Chaloner, Col. R. G. W.||Hardy, Laurence (Kent, Ashford)||Mount, William Arthur|
|Clay, Captain H. Spender||Harris, H. P. (Paddington, S.)||Nicholson, Wm. G.(Petersfield)|
|Clive, Percy Archer||Harrison-Broadley, H. B.||Nield, Herbert|
|Colefax, H. A.||Helmsley, Viscount||Orde-Powlett, Hon. W. G. A.|
|Compton, Lord A. (Brentford)||Henderson, H. (Berks, Abingdon)||Ormsby-Gore, Hon. William|
|Cooper, Capt. Bryan (Dublin, S.)||Hermon-Hodge, Sir Robert||Perkins, Walter F.|
|Cooper, R. A. (Walsall)||Hickmann, Colonel T.||Peto, Basil Edward|
|Courthope, G. Loyd||Hill, Sir Clement||Pollock, Ernest Murray|
|Craig, Charles Curtis (Antrim, S.)||Hillier, Dr. A. P.||Proby, Colonel Douglas James|
|Craig, Sir Henry||Hills, J. W.||Quilter, William Eley C.|
|Cripps, Sir C. A.||Hope, Harry (Bute)||Randles, Sir John Scurrah|
|Croft, H. P.||Hope, James Fifzalan (Sheffield)||Rawlinson, John Frederick Peel|
|Dairymple, Viscount||Horne, W. E. (Surrey, Guildford)||Rawson, Colonel R. H.|
|Dickson, Rt. Hon. C. Scott||Houston, Robert Paterson||Remnant, James Farquharson|
|Dixon, C. H.||Hume-Williams, W. E.||Rice, Hon. W.|
|Douglas, Rt. Hon. A. Akers-||Hunt, Rowland||Ridley, Samuel Forde|
|Du Cros, Alfred (Tower Hamlets, Bow)||Hunter, Sir C. R. (Bath)||Roberts, S. (Sheffield, Eccleshall)|
|Rolleston, Sir John||Starkey, John R.||Warde, Col. C. E. (Kent, Mid)|
|Ronaldshay, Earl of||Staveley-Hill, Henry (Staffordshire)||Wheler, Granville C. H.|
|Rothschild, Lionel de||Stewart, Gershom (Ches. Wirrall)||White, Major G. D. (Lancs., Southport)|
|Royds, Edmund||Strauss, A.||Willoughby, Major Hon. Claude|
|Rutherford, Watson||Sykes, Alan John||Willoughby de Eresby, Lord|
|Salter, Arthur Clavell||Talbot, Lord E.||Wilson, A. Stanley (York, E.R.)|
|Samuel, Sir Harry (Norwood)||Terrell, H. (Gloucester)||Winterton, Earl|
|Sanders, Robert A.||Thompson, Robert (Belfast, North)||Wood, Hon. E. F. L. (Ripon)|
|Sanderson, Lancelot||Thomson, W. Mitchell (Down, North)||Wood, John (Stalybridge)|
|Sandys, G. J. (Somerset, Wells)||Thynne, Lord A.||Worthington-Evans, L. (Colchester)|
|Sandys, Lieut.-Col. T. M. (Bootle)||Tryon, George Clement||Wortley, Rt. Hon. C. B. Stuart-|
|Sassoon, Sir Edward Albert||Tullibardine, Marquess of||Younger, George (Ayr Burghs)|
|Stanier, Beville||Walker, Col. W. H. (Lancashire)|
|Stanley, Hon. Arthur (Ormskirk)||Walrond, Hon. Lionel||TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—Sir A. Acland-Hood and Viscount Valentia.|
|Stanley, Hon. G. F. (Preston)||Ward, Arnold (Herts, Watford)|
|Abraham, William (Dublin Harbour)||Davies, Sir W. Howell (Bristol, S.)||Jones, H. Haydn (Merioneth)|
|Abraham, William (Rhondda)||Davies, M. (Vaughan- (Cardigan)||Jones, William(Carnarvonshire)|
|Addison, Dr. C.||Dawes, J. A.||Jowett, F. W.|
|Adkins, W. Ryland D.||Denman, Hon. Richard Douglas||Joyce, Michael|
|Agar-Robartes, Hon. T. C. R.||Dickinson, W. H. (St. Pancras, N.)||Keating, M.|
|Agnew, George William||Dilke, Rt. Hon. Sir Charles||King, J. (Somerset, N.)|
|Ainsworth, John Stirling||Doris, W.||Lambert, George|
|Alden, Percy||Duncan, C. (Barrow-in-Furness)||Law, Hugh A. (Donegal, W.)|
|Allen, Charles P.||Duncan, J. Hastings (York, Otley)||Layland-Barratt, Sir Francis|
|Anderson, A.||Dunn, A. Edward (Camborne)||Lehmann, R. C.|
|Ashton, Thomas Gair||Elverston, H.||Levy, Sir Maurice|
|Asquith, Rt. Hon. Herbert Henry||Falconer, J.||Lewis, John Herbert|
|Baker, H. T. (Accrington)||Fenwick, Charles||Lough, Rt. Hon. Thomas|
|Baker, Joseph A. (Finsbury, E.)||Ferguson, Rt. Hon. R. C. Munro||Low, Sir F. (Norwich)|
|Balfour, Robert (Lanark)||France, G. A.||Luttrell, Hugh Fownes|
|Barclay, Sir T.||Furness, Stephen||Macdonald, J. R. (Leicester)|
|Barlow, Sir John E.||Gelder, Sir W. A.||Macdonald, J. M. (Falkirk Burghs)|
|Barnes, G. N.||George, Rt. Hon. D. Lloyd||Macnamara, Dr. Thomas J.|
|Barran, Sir J. (Hawick)||Gibson, Sir James Puckering||M'Callum, John M.|
|Barran, Rowland Hirst (Leeds, N.)||Gill, A. H.||M'Curdy, C. A.|
|Barton, A. W.||Glanville, H. J.||McKenna, Rt. Hon. Reginald|
|Benn, W. (Tower Hamlets, S. Geo.)||Glover, Thomas||M'Laren, Rt. Hon. Sir C. B. (Leics.)|
|Bentham, G. J.||Goddard, Sir Daniel Ford||Mallet, Charles E.|
|Bethell, Sir J. H.||Greenwood, G. G.||Manfield, Harry|
|Birrell, Rt. Hon. Augustine||Greig, Colonel J. W.||Markham, Arthur Basil|
|Black, Arthur W.||Grey, Rt. Hon. Sir Edward||Masterman, C. F. G.|
|Boland, John Pius||Guest, Major||Meagher, Michael|
|Bowerman, C. W.||Gwynn, Stephen Lucius (Galway)||Meehan, Francis E. (Leitrim, N.)|
|Brace, William||Hackett, J.||Menzies, Sir Walter|
|Brady, P. J.||Haldane, Rt. Hon. Richard B.||Middlebrook, William|
|Brigg, Sir John||Hall, Frederick (Normanton)||Millar, J. D.|
|Brocklehurst, William B.||Hancock, J. G.||Molteno, Percy Alport|
|Bryce, J. Annan||Harcourt, Rt. Hon. Lewis (Rossendale)||Montagu, Hon. E. S.|
|Burke, E. Haviland-||Harcourt, Robert V. (Montrose)||Morgan, G. Hay (Cornwall)|
|Burns, Rt. Hon. John||Hardie, J. Keir (Merthyr Tydvii)||Morton, Alpheus Cleophas|
|Burt, Rt. Hon. Thomas||Harmsworth, R. L.||Murray, Captain Hon. A. C.|
|Buxton, C. R. (Devon, Mid.)||Harvey, A. G. C. (Rochdale)||Muspratt, M.|
|Buxton, Noel (Norfolk, N.)||Harvey, T. E. (Leeds, W.)||Neilson, Francis|
|Buxton, Rt. Hon. Sydney C. (Poplar)||Harwood, George||Nicholson, Charles N. (Doncaster)|
|Bytes, William Pollard||Haslam, James (Derbyshire)||Nolan, Joseph|
|Cameron, Robert||Haslam, Lewis (Monmouth)||Norton, Capt. Cecil W.|
|Carr-Gomm, H. W.||Havelock-Allan, Sir Henry||Nussey, Sir Willans|
|Cawley, Sir Frederick (Prestwich)||Haworth, Arthur A.||Nuttall, Harry|
|Cawley, Harold T. (Heywood)||Hayward, Evan||O'Brien, Patrick (Kilkenny)|
|Chancellor, H. G.||Helme, Norval Watson||O'Connor, John (Kildare, N.)|
|Channing, Sir Francis Allston||Henderson, Arthur (Durham)||O'Grady, James|
|Chapple, W. A.||Henderson, J. McD. (Aberdeen, W.)||O'Malley, William|
|Churchill, Rt. Hon. Winston S.||Henry Charles S.||Palmer, Godfrey|
|Clough, William||Higham, John Sharp||Parker, James (Halifax)|
|Clynes, J. R.||Hindle, F. G.||Pearce, William|
|Collins, G. P. (Greenock)||Hodge, John||Pease, Rt. Hon. Joseph A.|
|Collins, Stephen (Lambeth)||Hogan, Michael||Philipps, Sir Owen C (Pembroke)|
|Collins, Sir Wm. J. (St. Pancras, W.)||Hooper, A. G.||Pickersgill, Edward Hare|
|Compton-Rickett, Sir J.||Hope, John Deans (Fife, West)||Pirie, Duncan V.|
|Corbett, A. Cameron (Glasgow)||Horne, C. Silvester (Ipswich)||Pointer, Joseph|
|Cornwall, Sir Edwin A.||Howard, Hon. Geoffrey||Pollard, Sir George H.|
|Cory, Sir Clifford John||Hudson, Walter||Ponsonby, Arthur A. W. H.|
|Cowan, W. H.||Hughes, S. L.||Price, C. E. (Edinburgh, Central)|
|Craig, Herbert J. (Tynemouth)||Hunter, W. (Govan)||Price, Sir Robert J. (Norfolk, E.)|
|Crawshay-Williams, Ellot||Illingworth, Percy H.||Priestley, Arthur (Grantham)|
|Crossley, Sir William J.||Isaacs, Sir Rufus Daniel||Priestley, Sir W. E. B. (Bradford, E.)|
|Cullinan, J.||Jardine, Sir J. (Roxburgh)||Primrose, Hon. Neil James|
|Dalziel, Sir James H. (Kirkcaldy)||Johnson, W.||Pringle, William M. R.|
|Davies, David (Montgomery Co.)||Jones, Sir D. Brynmor (Swansea)||Radford, G. H.|
|Davies, E. William (Elfion)||Jones, Edgar R. (Merthyr Tidvil)||Raffan, Peter Wilson|
|Rainy, A. Rowland||Soames, Arthur Wellesley||Wason, Rt. Hon. E. (Clackmannan)|
|Raphael, Herbert H.||Soares, Ernest J.||Wason, John Cathcart (Orkney)|
|Rea, Walter Russell||Spicer, Sir Albert||Waterlow, D. S.|
|Reddy, M.||Stanley, Albert (Staffs, N.W.)||Watt, Henry A.|
|Rees, Sir J. D.||Strachey, Sir Edward||Wedgwood, Josiah C.|
|Rendall, Athelstan||Summers, James Woolley||White, Sir George (Norfolk)|
|Richards, Thomas||Sutton, John E.||White, J. Dundas (Dumbartonshire)|
|Roberts, Charles H. (Lincoln)||Taylor, John W. (Durham)||White, Sir Luke (York, E.R.)|
|Roberts, Sir J. H. (Denbighs)||Taylor, Theodore C. (Radcliffe)||Whitehouse, John Howard|
|Robertson, Sir G. Scott (Bradford)||Tennant, Harold John||Whittaker, Rt. Hon. Sir Thomas P.|
|Robertson, J. M. (Tyneside)||Thomas, Abel (Carmarthen, E.)||Whyte, A. F. (Perth)|
|Robinson, S.||Thomas, Sir A. (Glamorgan, E.)||Wiles, Thomas|
|Roch, Walter F. (Pembroke)||Thomas, D. A. (Cardiff)||Wilkie, Alexander|
|Roe, Sir Thomas||Thomas, J. H. (Derby)||Williams, J. (Glamorgan)|
|Rowntree, Arnold||Thorne, G. R. (Wolverhampton)||Williams, P. (Middlesbrough)|
|Runciman, Rt. Hon. Walter||Toulmin, George||Williamson, Sir A.|
|Samuel, Rt. Hon. H. L. (Cleveland)||Trevelyan, Charles Philips||Wilson, Hon. G. G. (Hull, W.)|
|Samuel, J. (Stockton)||Ure, Rt. Hon. Alexander||Wilson, John (Durham, Mid)|
|Samuel, S. M. (Whitechapel)||Verney, F. W.||Wilson, J. W. (Worcestershire, N.)|
|Schwann, Sir C. E.||Wadsworth, J.||Wilson, T. F. (Lanark, N.E.)|
|Scott, A. H. (Ashton-under-Lyne)||Walker, H. de R. (Leicester)||Wing, Thomas|
|Seddon, J.||Walsh, Stephen||Wood, T. M'Kinnon (Glasgow)|
|Seely, Col., Right Hon. J. E. B.||Walton, Sir Joseph||Young, W. (Perthshire, E.)|
|Shackleton, David James||Ward, John (Stoke-upon-Trent)||Younger, W. (Peebles and Selkirk)|
|Sherwell, Arthur James||Ward, W. Dudley (Southampton)||Yoxall, Sir James Henry|
|Shortt, Edward||Wardie, George J.|
|Smith, H. B. (Northampton)||Waring, Walter||TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—Master of Elibank and Mr. Gulland.|
|Snowden, Philip||Warner, Sir Thomas Courtenay|
Original Question, "That the sum of £2,995,300 be granted for said service," put, and agreed to.
§ The Chairman then proceeded to put severally the Questions, "That the total amounts of the Votes outstanding in each class of the Civil Service Estimates, including Supplementary Estimates, and the total amount of the Votes outstanding in the Estimates for the Navy and Army (including ordnance factories) be granted for the said Services defined in those classes and Estimates.