§ Postponed proceeding resumed on Question, "That a sum, not exceeding £3,493,800, be granted to His Majesty, to defray the Expenses of the Personnel for Shipbuilding, Repairs, Maintenance, etc., including the cost of Establishments of Dockyards and Naval Yards at Home and Abroad, which will come in course of payment during the year ending on the 31st day of March, 1913."
§ Question again proposed. Debate resumed.
§ Sir R. POLE-CAREW
I was pointing out that without the Navy we could not possibly hope to keep our Possessions abroad, or feed our people in this country. Perhaps that would appeal to the hon. Member. If that is the case, is it possible that any hon. Member should get up and make the speech to which we have just listened? It is absolutely suicidal. Having said that, I turn to the question of the dockyards. I am half a dockyard Member myself. So far from joining with the hon. Member who last spoke in telling the Financial Secretary that he has not benefited the men in the dockyards, I wish to thank him most sincerely for what he has done. I should like to have a little more, but I am thankful for small mercies, and I hope that when the time comes he will see fit to give us a bit more on the top of what he has given us. One matter in connection with the dockyard he has not, attended to in the way I should like. I have asked him once or twice whether he could not see his way to increase the numbers of the established men in the dockyards up to what they used to be, namely, 25 per cent, of the total employed. I know he has not seen his way to do that at present. The numbers were allowed to go down considerably, but now I believe they have come up to about 17 per cent. I know that the hired men have had things done for them in the way of a pension—
§ Sir R. POLE-CAREW
A gratuity and other matters which have improved their position. Still I should like to see the 1267 establishment increased. After all, those on the establishment are the best men. I hope the right hon. Gentleman will be able to consider that point. I have never been able to understand why it is that we always insist upon giving a very large portion of our work to private firms. I know the old argument is that it is necessary to keep the private firms in full work, with up-to-date and proper machinery and plant, but so long as we have our private firms building, as they always are building, for foreign nations, they will keep their machinery and plant up-to-date. Why should we not fill up our dockyards and bring in as many hands as we can? We want them. I believe at the present moment the dockyards are fairly full, and possibly with regard to battleships we could not build any more, but it has been proved in this Debate that we are short of destroyers, and we could very well put in more hands to build them. By doing so we should not only advantage the men themselves, but the country, because when the time comes, and the time will come probably much quicker than we think, we shall want every hand we can get, not only for building, but for repairs, and you will be able to take all the ships which are being built for foreign nations by private firms and use them for yourselves. I hope the right hon. Gentleman will also consider that point. To come to the larger subject. So much has been said about it to-night by my Noble Friend the Member for Portsmouth (Lord C. Beresford) that possibly it may seem that a humble individual and a soldier like myself has no right to talk about the proper strength of the Navy.
There was one point my Noble Friend missed. The First Lord of the Admiralty told us that by dropping the Cawdor programme he had done us a good turn. He told us that instead of building four ships that would now have been out of date, he had built four extra ships in 1909 which were of the pattern we required. That is all very well, but he knows as well as I do that not only ought he to have built these four ships, but four more, and if he had built the four ships that were in the Cawdor programme, he would have had the men of whom we are now so sadly short. If he had built four extra ships, as he should have done in 1909, we should have four more crews, and should not be in the position in which we now find ourselves. Then he has the face to tell us 1268 that because he has added 5,000 men this year, and is going to add 5,000 next year and the year after, in three or four years' time he will be in a better position. But he is now 20,000 men short. Why did he bring the Fleet home from the Mediterranean? He did so confessedly because he had not got the men. Whatever the First Lord may say, anybody who has any knowledge of the Navy, and I think I have had more all my life than he has, can tell you that it is impossible to make an able seaman in these days of machinery in less than five years. It will probably take six. That is the reason why these ships have been brought home. I have had the advantage of going about the world a great deal all my life. I have visited almost all our own possessions; I have been in every sea. I cannot imagine how any man can think that by withdrawing the fleet from the Mediterranean he has not done a great deal to destroy our prestige. I have served a good deal in the East, and I say that we live there almost entirely by our prestige. We live by what we did before; we live by the strength of our Navy, and we live by the prestige of the force of our Army. Although the Prime Minister told us the other day that it is an absurd assumption to imagine that we should have to meet Austria and Italy, as well as Germany, it is going that way. They are Germany's allies. By the withdrawal of the Mediterranean fleet we have already done a great deal to wreck our reputation in Turkey, in Egypt, and, I believe, in India also.
As to the suggestion which has been made from the benches opposite that we should drop the Mediterranean and clear out, as a soldier I san say that even supposing it were possible to do so, which it is not, by that you would give up Gibraltar, Malta, and Egypt, and you would lose India. I was in Turkey a few years ago at the time the Young Turks were turning their heads very distinctly in favour of Germany and away from us. Why was it done? They were quite open. They had not the slightest hesitation in saying why. They said, "you have reduced already," as we had then, "your naval power in the Mediterranean; by so doing you are ignoring the fact that Austria and Italy are determined to become naval powers of importance. They are allied with Germany. Germany is very strong on the land, and we Turks consider that we had better to look out for ourselves." Surely that shows what sea power means 1269 independently of the fact that we cannot exist at all without it. Let me go a little farther off, to the Pacific, A short time ago we were the predominant Power at sea in the Pacific. What is the position now? We have a weak squadron compared with the very strong fleet of the Japanese. It is perfectly true that the Japanese are our allies, and they will be just as long as it suits them. The whole of our garrisons, and in every other part of the world, have been and are still based on our sea power. The garrison of Hong Kong would be ridiculous if we had not a fleet to look after it. Come a little further home. Come back towards India. You find precisely the same thing. You find that our garrisons are absurd. They could not be maintained for a single moment if it was not for sea power. Again in the Indian seas our sea, power has been reduced. Go to the Atlantic. Go to Halifax, go to Vancouver. What do you find? I know the value of the British flag, and I know the misfortune—aye, a worse than misfortune—when that flag has been either withdrawn altogether or sadly weakened in our other seas. In Vancouver you find our loyal brothers across the sea tell you that the withdrawal of our flag from those seas—we have two little footling gunboats—has had this effect, that the rising generation has no idea of what the strength of the British Navy is; they do not see it. They see the American navy, but they do not see ours. Is it likely that that is the best way to bring them up to honour and admire the British Navy? Go down to Jamaica. What has happened there? There have been disturbances and there have been eruptions of volcanoes. What has happened? Has it been the British flag that has arrived to help the people? Not at all; a foreign flag. After all, if we are to exist as an Empire there is only one possible means of doing it, and that is by maintaining our Navy at such a strength that it is not only difficult to defeat it, but that no country would venture to assail it. To talk, as the First Lord has talked to-day, of a margin of four ships in the North Sea, or even eight—is it right? What does it matter to Germany if we beat her at sea She remains, as we have been told before, the biggest military Power in Europe. Why is she building? What absurd nonsense it as to say that Germany is building this great fleet to protect her commerce. What commerce has she got to protect compared with ours? Have we not been twenty 1270 times as strong as Germany? we helped to build her commerce Have we ever attempted to assail it? Then, what about food? Will Germany depend for her food upon the other side of the water? No! but we do. If we have a reverse at sea, what does this House suppose will be the effect? It is common knowledge, if only people would appreciate it, that we should have a food panic and bread riots, and no Government could possibly continue the war. But without that, if we lost a food ship or two we should have an enormous rise in prices. We should have that the moment we went to war. Would Germany? Not like we should! What nonsense it is to compare us with Germany as a sea Power. We must be strong enough to beat Germany in these seas, and any possible combination in the Mediterranean, or in any other sea on the civilised globe. By giving up the Cawdor programme in the way this Government did, by their fooling, by their prevarication, and by their want of appreciation of the position, they have betrayed their trust, and the position in which we now find ourselves is solely and entirely owing to them.
§ Mr. WILKIE
I will not enter into the question of the number of ships here or there more than to say that, in my opinion, notwithstanding the imaginative speeches which have been delivered in some quarters of the House, the Admiralty would be well-advised to hasten slowly. If you build too many ships today, they are made obsolete by new designs and new destructive power. Of course experts, like doctors, differ. And the Admiralty, like the House, can only rely on those responsible to them for advice. I am glad I heard the speech of the Secretary to the Admiralty, and, as he pointed out, no party spirit has intruded itself to any great extent. I do not approach this in any party spirit, nor any political one, nor even from the dockyard point of view, but from the general industrial and economic spirit. A late hon. Member informed this House that the dockyard rates were governed by the rates outside, and, of course, the rates outside are more or less governed by the Admiralty and their employés inside, and, next to the Post Office, they are the largest Employers of labour in the country. He also said that the Admiralty desire to merit the title of good employers. Workers generally understand that good employers are 1271 those who pay the best wages and give the best conditions. I want to show that the Admiralty are not doing so, and that if they desire to merit the title of good employers, they must make a considerable advancement on the proposals which have been made. We want deeds and not words. It has been said that so far we have had words only. I am not going so far as that. My hon. Friend the Member for the Blackfriars Division (Mr. Barnes) criticised adversely the offer made in reply to the petition of the workmen. I am one of those who are always thankful for small mercies, and I wish to use the very small step we have got for the purpose of getting something further. The Parliamentary Secretary told us that out of 50,000 workers there are about 8,000 established. That is only something like 16 per cent. I hope that the statements as to establishment are not going to be much longer used as against the other 84 per cent, of the Admiralty employés. The argument as to "establishment" will not be so potent in the future as in the past because of the new position created by the National Insurance Act. I have never said a word against that measure, though I have been against some of the red-tape machinery adopted to put it in force. I have always been in favour of the principle of the Act, and now that it is in force workers will be more on a level footing. If, as the First Lord has told us, the strain of naval service is greater than before, and if better intelligence is now required, should that greater strain and better intelligence not be better remunerated both in pay and conditions? I am sure the necessity for improvement was shown by the Parliamentary Secretary himself in the domestic budget he detailed to the House on Monday. In that budget there was neither beer nor tobacco. Nor was there anything for entertainment, and we know that "all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy." We want him to be alert, and that ought to be secured by better remuneration.
The increased cost of living is admitted. Since 1906, when the question of pay was dealt with, the workers have actually had a reduction through the increased cost of living. The increase given to the shipwrights of 6d. brings up the establishment men to 34s, 6d., and the hired men to 36s., but the difficulty in regard to this, as the right hon. Gentleman himself admits, is that the rate on the Tyne, Clyde, and 1272 Mersey, and at Barrow is 40s. 6d. That is for new work. The First Lord emphasised the question of repairs to-day, and if you bring in that question you have to add 3s., which makes 43s. 6d. a week. The point is this: What have the men said in regard to this nimble 6d.? They say that the mountain in labour has brought forth a mouse; they really expected something more in accordance with the present rates of pay and the present conditions of competition outside. Of course, the right hon. Gentleman reminded us that the Admiralty men only work forty-eight, hours in the dockyards. But so do the men only work forty-eight hours in some of the districts which build warships. Even on the Tyne the average hours are fifty-two and a half, for which they have an average pay of 42s. That is 6s. more than the Admiralty give. On the Mersey the average hours are fifty-one and a quarter, and the pay is £2 2s. 9d. a week. On the Clyde the average hours are fifty-four, and the pay is £2 1s. 7½d. At Barrow the average hours are fifty-one and a half, and the pay is £2 2s., as against the dockyard pay of 36s. for forty-eight hours. These figures show that there is not so much difference on the question of hours. Therefore the question of hours cannot be trotted out against an advance as applying to all the other workers. Some of them have higher rates in the Admiralty than outside, whereas in the case I am putting before the Committee it is quite the reverse.
I am always reminded of the privileges the Admiralty men get. The workers appreciate these privileges. We are not going to belittle them, but I wish to inform the Committee that we get from outside firms as many privileges on certain lines as we get from the Admiralty. Therefore the one can be easily put against the other. The right hon. Gentleman told us that he was only dealing with time rates. He knows that if he dealt with piece rates it could be shown that the Admiralty rates are a long way worse than those paid by. outside employers. I wish the representative of the Admiralty and the Committee to take special note of this point. The Admiralty pay the rates I have quoted on the Tyne, Clyde, Mersey, and at Barrow, through their contractors. In the name of common sense, why do they not pay these rates themselves and get credit for it? Then they might claim to be good and model employers carrying out the Fair-Wages. 1273 Clause. The Parliamentary Secretary told us that the Admiralty pay as good rates as outside employers for work done in the localities where the dockyards are. The Committee know as well as I do that at Sheerness, Chatham, Portsmouth, Devonport, and Pembroke, there are no other yards where warships are built, though there may be a few building yachts in these places. Therefore, it is not fair to say they are paying as good wages as outside employers. That is an unfair way to put the Fair-Wages Clause, which says that it must be similar work, and there is no similar work to the work in His Majesty's dockyard in the places I have enumerated. I join my colleague the Member for Blackfriars in appreciating the advance which has been given to the unskilled labourer and what they call the skilled labourer. They have been given a shilling a week, but I wish that it had been double that amount. I do hope that some other means will be taken instead of the annual process of going through the whole of this question, because the matter is becoming serious. Unless this question of the limits of remuneration of the workers in the dockyards is dealt with discontent will get beyond control. Therefore I hope that it will not be allowed to go that length, but that some means will be found to deal adequately with the matter, and so increase the efficiency of the Admiralty workers at the dockyards and the tradesmen throughout the country.
I will not repeat the figures quoted by the hon. Member for Blackfriars from the Board of Trade Returns, but the rates paid for drillers, riveters and caulkers are very much higher outside. What we contend is that when the Admiralty employs skilled labour at the skilled work, which the contractor is carrying out under the Fair-Wages Clause that they compel him to adopt, they ought to have skilled men for that skilled work. If the men are able to do the skilled work they ought to get the money, and if they are not able the Admiralty should take the old way of indenturing them to the trade and apprenticing them to the work, which would then be more efficiently done. I would like to emphasise the appeal which I have made. Instead of having these long petitions every year, running into sixty-one pages this year, giving the officials and the Members of the Admiralty a tremendous amount of work, they should have some conference with those who are connected with the workmen. In the skilled trades, 1274 before a lad can go into the principal trades in a dockyard, he must pass a very severe examination, and his education is of the highest, and even for the less skilled work they have to pass a very severe examination. That being so, another method ought to be considered, which I believe would tend to allay the friction that has arisen and give more satisfaction to the workers. I hope that they will carry out their promise to give us in the Autumn Session something tangible for the men of the lower deck and for the men who are not advanced in pay or position in His Majesty's ships. I have been told of one Member of the Government that he managed to get there through helping to obtain for the dockers what is known as the "docker's tanner." I am just wondering if this advance will become known as "Dr. Mac's tanner," and be the cause of his advancement in the Government as a colleague of the right hon. Gentleman to whom I refer. I have made no statement in any antagonistic mood, but I have made these remarks in the best interests of the Navy, of efficiency, of good workmanship, of the worker, of the Admiralty, and of the nation as a whole.
§ Dr. MACNAMARA
I am a little disappointed at the comment of my hon. Friend the Member for Blackfriars (Mr. Barnes). My colleagues and I have worked very hard in endeavouring to settle this question of wages and have taken into consideration the increased cost of living; and then to be told that the concessions which we have made may fairly be described as the pauper's prize strikes me as a little ungracious. I cannot make the same comment, I am very glad to say, on the criticisms of my hon. Friend the Member for Dundee (Mr. Wilkie). He is thankful for small mercies. May I say in reference to the method by which we endeavour to arrive at what are proper concessions to make, that the Board of Admiralty go into every yard every year. They sit there and meet the workmen face to face. The workmen can come and be represented by two members of every class of workman, or if they like they can be represented by one of their own class and an outside trade union leader, and in many cases they take that latter course. I desire to say from my experience—and I have had as much experience at this as any other member of the Board for the time I have been there—that certainly 1275 the workmen themselves and the leaders of their union do state their case with great skill and great power. Since 1906, as the result of hearing these petitions, we added to the wage sheet on the present number, roughly £100,000 a year, and now we are proposing on the 1st August on top of that to add concessions which on the present numbers will be estimated to cost another £41,500 a year. I say that those concessions are well deserved and I am quite sure that the money will be well earned, but I do not think that any hon. Gentleman is entitled to speak of them as the pauper's prize; neither do I think he will represent the view of the sworkmen in the dockyards. Of that £41,500 a year, £25,000 as I said on Monday will be given, and rightly given, to men on the lowest rungs of the ladder, the labourer and the skilled labourer. I am very glad to have had the privilege of being a party to increasing the wages of these men. As I said, we propose to add on the 1st August a shilling to the flat rate for the unskilled labourer, a shilling to the minimum for the skilled labourer, and a shilling to the special maximum for the skilled labourer. Those three concessions together affecting as they do the men who are most poorly paid, mean an addition of £25,000 a year on the present number, and the other concessions into which I will not go now mean another £16,500, of which the shipwrights get a concession of 6d. per week.
I gather from my hon. Friend the Member for Dundee (Mr. Wilkie) that he does not think that enough. Really I never thought he would think it enough; but I think it is equitable and fair. Both the hon. Member for Dundee and the hon. Member for the Blackfriars Division (Mr. Barnes) referred to the skilled labourers, and to the fact that skilled labourers in the dockyards are engaged occasionally, frequently if you like, upon work which is paid for outside and in private yards at tradesmen's rates. It is due to the Committee to say a word or two about that. We have in the dockyard an organisation which comprises the labourer, the skilled labourer, and the mechanic. In the dockyard there is a variety of occupations, some of which have no precise counterpart in the industrial world outside. The dockyards—Portsmouth, Devonport, and Pembroke—are in areas where if any man were discharged he would find it difficult to get 1276 corresponding work in the locality. If a shipwright were dismissed from Devonport he might have to go to the Clyde or elsewhere to find a situation. My hon. Friend referred to the riveters, caulkers, and drillers as getting tradesmen's wages. But what would happen if in the dockyards we classified these skilled labourers as tradesmen? Whenever a piece of riveting was finished, the workman might have to stand off. I stand here and say deliberately that we have found by employing the skilled labourer we can give him more continuous work. We first take the labourer, who in time acquires a certain aptitude in working machinery, and by and by, after a few years, he also acquires a certain measure of skill. We have found that by allotting riveting work, caulking work, drilling work, and other work of that kind to the skilled labourer—intervening between the labourer and the mechanic—we by that means are able to afford him more continuous employment than if we said the riveting, caulking, and drilling were to be done by tradesmen. If that were done, I am afraid that we should have to cut off skilled labourers, as is done in private yards.
§ Mr. WILKIE
That is not what I suggested; I do not want them to be paid off; but what I do say is that if these men perform equally skilled work they ought to be paid at the rate which is given to the skilled workers outside.
§ 9.0 P. M.
§ Dr. MACNAMARA
I do not want to disparage the work of skilled riveters in other yards, nor do I want to discourage the skilled labourer in the dockyard. My hon. Friend may take it from me, however, that the work in the dockyard is not quite so responsible as that which the skilled tradesman, who is a riveter, does in the outside yard. It is good work which is done in the dockyard, and we are very glad to have this class of men to undertake this sort of work. Both my hon. Friend and I have the same object in view, to do the best we can for these men. I venture to say if you take, not the last two years, when shipbuilding has been very active, but the previous two years, or if you take a series of years, it will be found that the time which outside riveters have to stand off for lack of work makes the position of the dockyard skilled labourer, with the new special rate maximum 31s., and the old special rate maximum of 30s. in the past, favour- 1277 ably compare with the condition of the outside worker who is subject to the disadvantages of times of depression and of nonemployment. In regard to the question of shipwrights, I make no complaint about my hon. Friend's observations. He says: "On the Tyne, on the Clyde, on the Mersey, and at Barrow, the shipwright is getting 40s. 6d. for skilled work, while you are only giving the shipwright in the dockyard 36s. How can you justify a rate of 4s. 6d. a week less?" Let me remind the Committee that the principle of the Admiralty is that we shall pay rates and have conditions of employment in the dockyards which are not less favourable than the rates and conditions for corresponding work in the locality. I think that is the proposition. I do not think my hon. Friend would come to me and say that we ought to pay at Pembroke exactly the same wages as are paid on the Clyde. We undertake to pay a rate of wages which is not less favourable than the wages paid for corresponding work in the locality of the yard. Therefore we are not on common ground at all. The hon. Member says that the dockyard hired shipwrights will get 36s., and this "nimble 6d.," of which he spoke, whereas on the Clyde the wage is 40s. 6d. Even if you compare the 36s. in the dockyards with the 40s. 6d. in the private yards, if you take the pay hourly, and compare the forty-eight hours in the dockyards with the fifty-one hours, fifty-two hours, and fifty-three hours in private yards, the pay outside comes very much more near to the 36s.
§ Mr. BARNES
In not a single one of those private yards where forty-eight hours are in operation do they pay less wages on that account.
§ Dr. MACNAMARA
Forty-eight hours is not very general, and I think that the hours are generally fifty-one and fifty-two hours. Even with forty-eight hours a week—obviously it is a matter of arithmetic—you get much nearer than would be imagined to the pay of 36s. Roughly, there are 50,000 men in our employment, and 8,000 of them have absolute fixity of tenure, subject to good conduct. They have superannuation allowance, and even the non-established men, though it is fair to say they have not at present fixity of tenure like the established men, are, in fact, in three cases out of four, fairly certain of continuous employment, which you have not outside except in time 1278 of great prosperity. Although the non-established men are not pensioned, if they are dismissed after seven years they get a gratuity of one week's pay for every year's service, and if they are dismissed after fifteen years, for any reason except misconduct, they get one week's pay for every year they have been employed. I consider it a little ungracious to say that these concessions, which represent £41,000, added to £100,000 per year, are a pauper's prize, and I am glad to have the opportunity of telling that to the hon. Member to his face.
§ Mr. WILKIE
With reference to the forty-eight hours inside and outside the average weekly wage of private yards for forty-eight hours per week, and taking no other, is £2.
§ Dr. MACNAMARA
Then you have to add the value of the privileges which I do not want to put too high.
§ Dr. MACNAMARA
Since we arranged this 6d. increase my hon. Friend brought a deputation to me, a very influential deputation whose views were very powerfully expressed. The views of that deputation, which came on Monday week, will undoubtedly be seriously considered, and I will also give to the petitions for the coming year every consideration as will my colleagues; but I cannot go beyond the concessions which have been made to the shipwrights of 6d. per week. If I did I should, first of all, be going beyond my province, and I should be raising hopes which might not be realised, which is the last thing I should wish to do.
§ Sir C. KINLOCH-COOKE
The statement of the First Lord of the Admiralty this afternoon, like that which he made on Monday, was most interesting and informing; but I think I may say that so far as we on this side are concerned, it left us a little cold in regard to the question of new construction. We have been given much useful information with regard to the German fleet, and the First Lord reminded us that there has been added a sixth division, and that the German naval policy was marching unswervingly towards its goal. I only hope we might be able to say that the British naval policy was marching unswervingly to its goal. We also know that the Mediterranean is not to be abandoned, and that the First Lord and the Chancellor of the Exchequer are on the best of terms. So far, so good; but let us look at the 1279 position in the Mediterranean, or, rather, what it will be in the future. It will be, says the First Lord, stronger than it is to-day, by withdrawing the six older battleships from Malta, and replacing them with battle cruisers of the "Invincible" class, and substituting for the present cruisers more powerfully built vessels, while at Gibraltar there will be stationed six battleships which will increase in two years' time to eight. The weakness of the Gibraltar squadron is that it is to be ready to operate in the North Sea and the Mediterranean whenever occasion requires. The First Lord told us in March last that it was absolutely necessary that we should concentrate all our strength in the North Sea. Presumably, then, the eight vessels which are to replace the present vessels placed at Malta, will have to be drawn from the Fleet in the North Sea. Therefore, to this extent, the Fleet in the North Sea must be immediately weakened. Does the First Lord imagine that he is adding to the strength of the striking force by this process of disposition? His action reminds me of the Irishman who endeavoured to increase the size of his blanket by cutting a piece off the top and sewing it on to the bottom.
We shall have in 1914, we are told, a minimum of thirty-three battleships, fully manned and in full commission—I think those are the words of the First Lord this afternoon—against the German figure of twenty-nine. That in itself, to use the First Lord's own words, is certainly not an excessive proportion. He goes on to add, and he emphasises this in reply to the speech of the hon. and gallant Member for Portsmouth, that the quality of the ships of the squadrons must be measured. He asked us not to press him too closely on the point. I do not propose to press him on the point, but I think he will agree, and the House will agree, that it is idle to suppose that a German sailor is not equal in every way to a British sailor, and if one ship is better armed and of a larger size than the other, the difference is not so very great. I should like to have a statement from the First Lord, though as he has left the House I suppose I cannot get it, whether in 1914, on the present basis of new construction, our fleet of first-class battleships will satisfy the new standard of British naval superiority laid down by himself, namely, 60 per cent, superiority of vessels of the 1280 "Dreadnought" type over the German Navy on the basis of the existing Navy Law? To return to the figures twenty-nine and thirty-three, it must not be forgotten that the Fourth Battle Squadron, as we were reminded by several speakers to-day, consisting of eight ships, will be stationed at Gibraltar, which is at least three and a half days' sailing from the North Sea, and six days' sailing if it were operating in the Mediterranean, so that our North Sea Fleet will be twenty-five and not thirty-three. That is to say, we shall Have available in home waters only twenty-five as against twenty-nine German ships of similar size. Further, I would remind the House that all the while the North Sea Fleet will be weakened by the presence of the eight cruisers placed at Malta, because those must necessarily be taken from the North Sea.
I fully agree with the First Lord that it is wrong and wasteful to build a ship for the Navy before it is wanted, but I submit that the only way to meet the difficulty I have pointed out is to increase our margin. The First Lord will perhaps say, "That is exactly what I am going to do," because he stated that the construction for the next five years would have been three, four, three, four, three; but now, in view of the German expansion, he says that the programme will be five, four, four, four, four. That is true, but the Supplementary Estimate, if you will allow me to say so, takes no provision of any kind for this expansion, except in respect of men. If the recruiting of men, as the hon. and gallant Member for Portsmouth said, does not proceed faster than it has done in the past, it is by no means certain we shall be able to secure the men for which the money is being voted. That, however, is another matter, and does not come into this Vote, so that I cannot refer further to it. In reality, then, no addition whatever has been made to our First Fleet. With regard to the Mediterranean, the position there is only restored; at the expense of the position in the North Sea. With regard to the new ships that may be required to meet German expansion, all we have to depend on is the promise of the First Lord. Again, we have to face the fact that in home waters we shall only have twenty-five "Dreadnoughts" against Germany's twenty-nine. As I have already said, we should increase the margin, and the only way to do that, and to do it satisfactorily, is to lay down the extra ships required to meet the 1281 change in the German fleet and to lay them down at once; and to build besides that a new squadron of battleships and of cruisers for the Mediterranean without delay. If this were done, then I believe we should be safe for some years to come. Under present conditions we are not secure, and we cannot become secure. I think that all Members on this side will agree with what I have said. It is all very well for the Government to say, "We decline to regard Italy and Austria as possible foes." That is very nice. "The fact that these two nations will have eight, nine, or ten 'Dreadnoughts' in commission in January, 1915, need not be taken into account." That also is very nice. But either the Triple Alliance is in being, or it is not. Hitherto we have always considered that it was. If that is so, the combined fleet of the Triple Alliance in 1915 will, so far as "Dreadnoughts" go, exceed our 33 by 4, 5, or 6, as the case may be. It is all very well for the First Lord to say that the Gibraltar Battle Squadron in conjunction with the Navy of France would make a combined force superior to all possible combinations. No one will subscribe to that statement. Is it not a humiliation? Is it not a confession of our own weakness in the Mediterranean? After all, this would not be an entente, it would be an alliance. Are we prepared to hand over to a foreign Power our interests in the Mediterranean? Remember, the greater portion of our food comes through the Mediterranean. This sea is the key to Egypt, and Egypt is the key to India, to say nothing of Australia and New Zealand. I do, not think that the people of this country will be willing to hand over their interests to France.
Attention called to the fact that forty Members were not present. House counted; and forty Members being found present—
§ Sir C. KINLOCH-COOKE
Again, has the Government considered the position of Germany in this matter? How does an arrangement of the kind hinted at by the First Lord help on our friendly relations with Germany? We must have nothing to do with an entente or an alliance in the matter of naval supremacy. We must stand alone—yet not alone, because we should have the Dominions with us. We are one people, with one destiny, co-heirs of the same glorious inheritance, an Empire upon which the sun never sets. This inheritance and this Empire we intend to defend by land and sea, not by the 1282 help of foreign nations, but by the bone and sinew of the British race. The First Lord bids us look at the naval policy of Germany, which he says marches unswervingly to its goal. So, I say, should the British naval policy march unswervingly to its goal. What is that goal? It is to secure for all time the supremacy of the sea and the safety of our Empire.
I propose to say a few words about the dockyards. I regret to see the cutting down of the establishment. The establishment, which formerly numbered 70,000, has been cut down in six years by 5,000 men, a reduction of 9½ per cent. The object of the establishment is to have ready in the Royal dockyards a sufficient number of men skilled in all the technicalities of naval shipbuilding, on whose services the Government can depend in any emergency. The question we have to ask ourselves is, have we got that number? Does the right hon. Gentleman say that we have? I say that we have not. I submit to the Committee that instead of cutting down the establishment the safer policy would be to extend it. You are building more ships and increasing the personnel of the Navy, and on the other hand you are cutting down the establishment and impairing the reserve. To my way of thinking this is a short-sighted policy. The greater the number of ships, the greater the personnel of the Navy, the greater the establishment in the dockyards should be. Apart from the general question of establishment, there are special cases in which the workmen are prejudiced by this cutting down. The right hon. Gentleman will know what I mean by this. Shipwrights' apprentices ought to be established two years after they have served their time. At least, that used to be the custom, but I am sorry to say it has fallen into disuse. They have often to wait six or seven years before they are established, which makes a great deal of difference in the matter of their pensions. After twelve years' service naval shipwrights can claim to be established. How can this be done under present conditions without inflicting a further hardship on these dockyard shipwrights who are waiting to be established? The difficulty of obtaining shipwrights is great. There have been advertisements in the Labour Exchanges only recently, asking for shipwrights in the yards.
§ Sir C. KINLOCH-COOKE
No, but there is a shortage of shipwrights in the yards, and the right hon. Gentleman knows that a certain number are leaving at the present moment. I suggest that they are leaving because they are not well enough paid. In any case the difficulty remains. Shipwrights are leaving the yards, and the right hon. Gentleman has been kind enough to give them only an extra sixpence. I am not going to quarrel with the right hon. Gentleman for his generosity. I am sure be would give them a shilling if he could. But he has given them only sixpence, which is merely sufficient to pay their insurance. How other men in the yards will regard this payment I cannot say. I should have liked the right hon. Gentleman to have extended it to the joiners, who are very badly paid. They get 34s. 6d. a week; they want 36s. That is not a very great advance, seeing that outside wages range from 37s. at Barrow to 42s. in London and Liverpool. Thirty-four shillings and sixpence is the lowest wage paid to any workman in the Royal Dockyard; but, say the Admiralty, these men have continuous employment. How can the Admiralty say that, when the men are made to pay 2½d. a week towards the unemployment fund of the dockyard? I do not say that they do not have continuous employment, but it is not an argument which the right hon. Gentleman is in a position to use. It is said that they work only forty-eight hours. So do all the other trades in the dockyards, and yet in every case their pay is higher. It is true that after seven years they get a gratuity, based on a week's pay for every year's service. This would amount in seven years to £8 7s. 6d. If to that you add the wages for holidays you get £17 14s. 10d. as representing the bonus a man would get in seven years. But look at what he would get if he was working in private employment. If you place against this the 4s. extra which is the average of the outside men, he would get a bonus of £72 10s., as against £17 14s. 10d. I venture to say that that is hardly a fair way of dealing with the men who hold such an important and responsible position as the joiners. I beg the right hon. Gentleman, when he comes next year to consider the petitions, to consider that of the joiners. With regard to the chargemen, I asked the right hon. Gentleman to place these men in the same position. I do not gather what he has done in the matter, but it would appear that some have got Is. 6d. and some Is. All these chargemen have the same kind 1284 of work, and the reason for paying them 1s. and 1s. 6d. respectively is merely a question of economy on the part of the Admiralty. No doubt the right hon. Gentleman would say that a great number of them are paid on a higher scale. Take the shipwrights in the Devonport Dockyard. Only twenty-five of them have got the Is. 6d.; yet they all do the same work. Is that fair? Is that the proper way to treat the men in the dockyards? I say no! The Financial Secretary I understood had placed all the chargemen upon the same basis.
§ Dr. MACNAMARA
No. There are some chargemen who get 9s. a week and some 6s. a week. We are going to increase the number who get 9s. a week. There will still remain some who get 6s. a week. In addition we are going to give the chargemen leave of nine days a year with pay.
§ Sir C. KINLOCH-COOKE
There is something, then, in what I said as to twenty-five out of the 100 getting the increase? You propose fifty? What about the skilled labourers, whom you have kindly given the 1s. to? I am sure they will be grateful to you for it. But you must remember that these men are performing work which in private dockyards is done by mechanics who receive a much higher rate of pay. I do not want to instance any cases. I have not the time now. but I could give the right hon. Gentleman several cases in this connection. The Financial Secretary the other night read to us a very interesting document. I have a similar document in my possession. This interesting document contained the weekly budget of a skilled labourer earning 22s. a week, and it left him, after he had paid for the necessaries of life, with Is. 3½d. for clothing, boots, medical attendance, and other incidentals. That was what was in it.
§ Sir C. KINLOCH-COOKE
You said it was very hard, and that you were very sorry for these men, did you not? And you said you were going to give them a shilling extra, and you did. But you also gave the unskilled labourer a shilling extra. You brought the unskilled labourer from 21s. to 22s., and you therefore placed the unskilled labourer in exactly the same position as the skilled labourer. You have placed the ordinary labourer in exactly the same position as the particular man whom you said you 1285 were so sorry for, and whose case you said you would consider. I leave it to the House to say whether you have done right. On the other hand, I venture to hope that when next year comes round you will give a little more consideration both to the skilled and unskilled labourers in the dockyard. In the few moments at my disposal I wish to impress upon the right hon. Gentleman the necessity of considering the question of pensions for the hired men. I have already spoken in this House on this point. The Financial Secretary said to me on one occasion when I was pressing the case of the hired men that some must be disappointed; that all could not be established, seeing the established numbers were limited. Can he tell me on what equitable grounds the Admiralty refuses to recognise the claim for a pension of one set of workmen in the yard while granting a pension to another set of workmen, both sets of workmen doing exactly the same work, and being equally qualified? The national and shipbuilding work of this country cannot be carried on in this way, or ought not to be. Yet that is the way the matter stands at present. Two men are equally eligible for a pension: one is taken; the other is left. Will the right hon. Gentleman consider the propriety of discussing this question with a deputation of these men, and consider whether they can possibly, in conjunction with the Admiralty, formulate a scheme by which they can receive a pension?
§ Dr. MACNAMARA
If a deputation is arranged—accredited as the deputations are at the hearing of petitions—I will be prepared to hear what they have to say; but I can hold out no hope of a pension scheme except one self-maintained.
§ Sir C. KINLOCH-COOKE
I am sorry to hear the right hon. Gentleman say that. That is hardly what I want for these men. But I think the Noble Lord the Member for Portsmouth, myself, and other dockyard Members will probably bring a deputation before the right hon. Gentleman if he will only name the day to receive us. Perhaps it might be before the holidays or after the holidays, but perhaps in any case he will fix a day to hear these grievances from the dockyard.
§ Mr. DAVID MASON
I beg to move, to reduce the Vote by £100.
In my opinion a case has not been made out for a Supplementary Estimate; the *case has not by any means been proved.
§ The DEPUTY-CHAIRMAN (Mr. Maclean)
It is Vote 8, and not the Supplementary Estimate which is before us.
§ Mr. DAVID MASON
Of course, I referred to the Supplementary Estimate, which forms part of Vote 8. Vote 8 is before us. I should like to say that I listened with amazement to the speech of the right hon. Gentleman the First Lord of the Admiralty on Monday, and also to his speech this afternoon. He held the House entranced by the masterly way in which he moved in and out amongst battleships, cruisers, and torpedo-boat destroyers, showing undoubtedly that he had mastered, as he generally docs, the technique of his office. He knew his problem, and I think he demonstrated to this House that certainly he has become an expert. We all congratulate him on his knowledge of everything connected with his office, and particularly on everything connected with the technique of his office; but although we may congratulate him on all that I think we may feel very grave dissatisfaction, because what he has gained in reputation as an expert he has lost in reputation as a statesman. After all, we surely are governed by statesmen, not by experts! Even the Noble Lord opposite, in his very interesting speech, pointed out that he deplored our taking into this controversy the name of any single Power; he deplored our continual comparisons of the strength of the British Navy with that of Germany. I think that sentiment is one with which many of us on this side of the House will agree. After all, surely the needs of the British Empire are the protection of her trade routes, and it is quite unnecessary, as the First Lord intimated in his introduction, that we should drag in talk about what Germany is doing, and that we should resolve this House into a Committee Room of the Admiralty to discuss competitive formulæ and whether we have a certain number of ships more than Germany or any other Power.
In round figures the total expenditure of this country on the Navy is now £44,000,000. I believe that is double that of Germany, and surely that colossal preponderance ought to be sufficient to demonstrate that there is no necessity of going into details so far as that or any other Power is concerned, as to the components of their Fleet. The right bon. Gentleman went on to give us figures with regard to the future. On 1287 these particular comparisons I think also if we look to the past we have no reason to assure ourselves that the forecasts of the future are likely to be any more accurate than the forecasts of the past. The Noble Lord, the Member for Portsmouth pointed out quite rightly, and was perfectly entitled to make a party point out of it. that the original scare of 1909 originated on this side of the House, and we ought to remember that the scare with regard to the future may have no better foundation. If my memory serves me right, the First Lord of that date pointed out that Germany this year would have seventeen "Dreadnoughts," and the right hon. Gentleman, the Member for the City of London, pointed out that we would have twenty-five, I think I am right in saying that Germany at this date has but twelve, or at most thirteen, and I am entitled to say in these circumstances that the present First Lord will be just as likely to be wrong in his forecasts of the future, and that when he spoke of facts he spoke of contingent facts or possible facts, and not existing facts. We have to contend with the position as it is to-day, and, as was pointed out by my hon. Friend the Member for Montrose Burghs—
§ Mr. ROBERT HARCOURT
My argument was the precise contrary. When the hon. Gentleman speaks of forecast, I agree with him, but I took a different view with regard to building.
§ Mr. DAVID MASON
I was referring to the matter of building. My hon. Friend referred, I think, to the rapidity with which we could build in this country, and very properly pointed out that in the matter of building we should take advantage of securing the very latest scientific engines. We are asked to subscribe to increase future Estimates on the ground of security. But I submit there are other elements of security. To be obsessed with the idea that great ships and enormous fleets are the only security is, in my humble opinion, to ignore other attributes which go to make up the strength of a country, and a country which may possibly be—though we hope not—dragged into war. There is surely the question of financial reserve to be considered. On a previous occasion I took the opportunity to refer to that, and if I may again refer to the illustration I gave to the House, which was the war between Japan and Russia, I should like to 1288 do so for a moment. There was the case of Japan, triumphant in the high seas, when the Russian navy was at the bottom of the sea; and Japan had also obtained great successes on land as well as at sea, yet Japan was compelled to come to terms, with Russia for no other reason than that she was unable financially to continue that war. I did not suggest that the British Empire is in the same position as. Japan; but it is an illustration having regard to your strength and security of which we should take a broad survey. You should have regard in your expenditure on naval armaments, and also in regard to. social reform, some ideas of economy. Our national credit is not in a high position at the present, and if we were under the strain of the money market, which is very considerable to borrow £100,000,000 if faced with a European war, we would be in great difficulty to obtain the capital, and we would probably be faced with a very grave reduction in our national credit as a result. I submit any wise First Lord of the Admiralty, or any Government, while maintaining a strong Navy to which we all subscribe, should" have regard to other attributes that go to build up strength and security, and which go to obtain that success which we all wish this country to attain.
Therefore, I submit in a time like the present of absolute peace, when our relations with this particular power were described by the Foreign Secretary as excellent, to come down to this House and' make speeches such as we have heard made here, supporting such important and' grave expenditure and unlimited expenditure is not to do the wise and commonsense thing in view of the situation as it exists to-day, but is to show that Liberalism is bankrupt of ideas. It is to. show that there is no alternative, no hope, no policy held out to us. When our statesmen tell us in their speeches that they have no alternative policy, when there is no reference made to better understandings, to the possibility of arbitration treaties, or any other possible method, to arrive at some understanding except by this folly—for it is folly on the part of Germany and other Powers as well as ourselves, wasting the great reserves of loanable capital of the world—is to offer us a policy of despair. Although I rejoice that the Dominions are prepared to come in and join forces with us, yet I regret the fact that Canada, for example, which has been able to continue during all these 1289 years on such friendly terms with her great neighbour the United States without expenditure on armaments should be drawn into this great orbit of wasteful and devastating expenditure. I rejoice, if this expenditure is to be continued, that our Colonies are willing and patriotic enough to join forces with the Mother-country, and to support her; but I deprecate, and deplore that it is a Liberal Government particularly that makes no effort either by policy or statesmanship to allay this devastating and sterilising and impoverishing expenditure to which we are asked to subscribe. I submit with many others on this side of the House, that we are now at present in a position of strength and security and that we have an adequate Navy for our immediate needs, and that while keeping up this strong Navy we should also maintain our financial reserves and do something to improve the condition of our people and to make them more contented and happy, and that we should do something to reduce the cost of living which this expenditure undoubtedly does a great deal to aggravate and increase. Any one who gives attention to that subject must know if you carry through economics you reduce the cost of living. By doing something to do away with the Sugar and the Tea Taxes, or something to improve the conditions of the working classes, you are also adding to the strength and the physique of your people, and thereby improving the conditions of your Navy and your Army. Therefore, anything that tends to improve the condition of the people must improve the strength of this nation, and it is wise for the Government to keep that in view. I hope that in the few minutes I have addressed the Committee I have made good the point that in view of the present position of things, and with the present facts before us, no case has been made out for this policy, which has been announced as the policy of the Government. I hope that on every occasion an ever increasing number of hon. Members on this side, as well as hon. Members on the other side, will oppose this policy. There was a time when Disraeli was willing to join forces with Gladstone on this side of the House in favour of economy. He had a great brain and realised that strength did not only depend upon armaments, and that wise statesmanship must have regard to the other attributes to which I have referred. I hope hon. Gentlemen opposite will join forces with us, because we recognise that it is hopeless for us to fight for economy when hon. 1290 Members opposite invariably support our Front Bench in this ever increasing expenditure. We look forward to the time when hon. Members will see with us, that while we are in favour of a strong and adequate defence, we recognise that there are other attributes, and that the true prosperity of this nation does not depend upon an ever increasing and devastating form of armaments.
§ Mr. EYRES-MONSELL
The hon. Member who has just sat down has repeated most of the shibboleths which we are accustomed to read in the daily papers. I do not agree with the hon. Member when he says that Liberalism is bankrupt of ideas. In face of the single-tax policy that statement misrepresents the ingenuity of the Liberal party. I am only surprised that he did not advance what is a more forward theory, that all those who cry for extra "Dreadnoughts" should find the money for them by a tax on land. This of course, is not original. There has been in history a most unfortunate precedent for that, for it was the only contribution that Ethelred the Unready made towards the Navy, in ordering all men with a certain amount of land to build a ship, and soon after that the Danes invaded this country. I regret that the First Lord of the Admiralty is not in the House, because I wanted to deal with the speech he made this afternoon. The great fault I have to find with the right hon. Gentleman is that he has said a great deal, but his deeds have not come up to his words. He made two excellent speeches, so good that they earned the high distinction of being bitterly attacked in the "Daily News." He has made two more good speeches in the course of the last two days, but a great many people think that under his regime the Navy is not perfectly safe and secure. When the right hon. Gentleman translates some of his words into deeds I shall be amongst the first to be laud the policy of the right hon. Gentleman. What are the, deeds up to date of the right hon. Gentleman? Under his regime we have made a determined effort to abandon the Mediterranean, and I do not think we can realise the effect that partial abandonment will have upon the Continent, and especially in the East, where such an enormous amount of prestige depends upon a show of force. My case against the right hon. Gentleman is that we were promised that if the German programme referred to was brought in Supplementary Estimates would imme- 1291 diately be produced to meet it. The Supplementary Estimates we discussed the day before yesterday had very little to do with that programme, and no ships are to be proceeded with to meet the increase foreshadowed in the German programme. I think a very great opportunity has been lost, because the House was absolutely ready to vote any sum that was asked for to meet the needs of the Navy.
What is the result of this great Supplementary Estimate? The right hon. Gentleman has asked for under £1,000,000, and in the next sentence he tells us that he has returned £2,000,000 already voted for the needs of the Navy to other expenditure. The third point I have against the right hon. Gentleman is that I think all the evidence tends to show that he is still under the malignant influence of the Little Navy party, who are always blaming somebody for this large expenditure on the Fleet, and generally hon. Gentlemen on this side, and sometimes the right hon. Gentleman the Chancellor of the Exchequer. Can the not really see who they have got to blame for this large expenditure? Can they not now see who are the real culprits who have brought about this large expenditure? I say it is the Little Navy party, and that party alone, which has been the cause of reducing the great superiority we had in the Navy, and who are directly responsible for the great increase in expenditure which we have to meet to-day, and which we shall have to meet by increasing sums in the future. I hope the Committee will not think that in saying this I am actuated by any party motives at all. I have been brought up in the Navy, and it is my school. I may tell hon. Gentlemen that it is the keenest service in the world and one of the best, and I put it infinitely above party politics. I hope hon. Members will believe me when I say that I should attack a Little Navy party just as bitterly if they sat on this side of the House. I repeat that the Little Navy party are responsible for this large expenditure, and my statement can be proved by the most complete circumstantial evidence that has ever been brought before the country. The right hon. Gentleman explained clearly the German Naval Law. I do not believe the country really understands that law very well or the amendments which have taken place in that law. I do not think the country understands the psychological moments when those amendments were made. 1292 The German Naval Law, as everybody knows, started in 1900 to come to fruition in 1920. In 1905 the Conservative Government produced the Cawdor Memorandum. The hon. Gentleman the Member for the Montrose Burghs (Mr. R. Harcourt) called this Memorandum a "legislative Mrs. Harris." It would never have become a "legislative Mrs. Harris" if the Conservative Government had remained in power. It only became a "legislative Mrs. Harris" when the Liberal party came in power. Take the first amendment of the German Naval Law. It was pretty evident in 1905 that the Liberal party would come' back to power.
§ Mr. EYRES-MONSELL
It was issued by the Board of Admiralty which is above such things as mere party politics. Does the hon. Gentleman insinuate it was not genuine?
I say it was issued two months before the General Election, and such a thing had never been done before. The Cawdor Memorandum was issued in November, and the General Election took place in December.
§ Mr. EYRES-MONSELL
The hon. Gentleman has not answered my question. If he has not got the courage to get up and say what he means, he had better not interrupt.
§ Mr. EYRES-MONSELL
It was pretty evident the Liberal party were coming back to power. It was evident the country thought so. What was one of the chief cries of the Liberal party? "Reduction in naval expenditure." What was the direct answer of Germany? They added six extra "Dreadnoughts" to the Fleet Law to come into operation with the advent of the Liberal party, and to remain in operation about, what they thought, was the ordinary normal life of the Liberal Government. If the Cawdor Memorandum had been adhered to, all might have been well, but in 1906 the Government built three, in 1907 three, and in 1908, the culminating point of their policy, they only laid down two. That had the direct result of another amendment of the German Naval 1293 Law, but it was a little more subtle this time. They did it by reducing the age of battleships from twenty-five to twenty years. People did not understand that, but it had the direct effect of adding four more "Dreadnoughts" to the number contemplated in 1900. In 1909 the Government began to see where they were drifting. They laid down eight "Dreadnoughts" in that year, but even the laying down of those eight has been criticised by hon. Gentlemen below the Gangway in today's Debate. The hon. Member for Glasgow (Mr. Barnes) quoted, I believe, the old rhyme:—We want eight, and we won't wait.10.0 P.M.
Does he think we could get on without those eight? They came to their senses more or less in 1909, but last year they had a relapse. The right hon. Gentleman who is now Home Secretary (Mr. McKenna) had more or less to apologise to the Little Navy party. He talked about a safe reduction this year. I think it was folly to talk about that. He talked about the high-water mark of naval expenditure. The whole lesson of the two previous amendments of the German Naval Law was thrown away, with the direct result that a third amendment has been introduced, not only for three extra "Dreadnoughts," but, as the First Lord of the Admiralty explained, for an enormous increase to the striking force of the German fleet. Three times has that naval law been augmented, and every time it has coincided with the three points of greatest weakness shown by the party opposite.
§ Mr. EYRES-MONSELL
I should have thought the hon. Gentleman ought to have known from the tenour of his speech just now. If the hon. Gentleman wants to know where forty-two of them are, I recommend him to look in the Division List of the day before yesterday. If he objects to the title "Little Navy Party," I cannot imagine why he has moved a reduction. I am going to tell them what they have done. In my opinion, the direct result has been to add thirteen "Dreadnoughts" to Germany's fleet. It will cost us at least the building of twenty "Dreadnoughts" in answer to that, and it will mean a capital cost of about £40,000,000, besides a huge annual expenditure and commit- 1294 ments for the future. If the Cawdor programme had been carried out, I think this would have been the result. It is only a matter of arithmetic to see that if it had been carried out we should to-day have built less ships in the aggregate than we have done. I believe those three amendments would never have been made, and now, secure in an assured superiority, we should have been safe in starting to reduce our naval programme. We should have been so secure and so superior in naval strength that nobody would have thought or dreamt of approaching us. Is it not time—I do not ask this in an offensive way, but for the good of the Navy and of the country—that the advice and the policy of the Little Navy party should be altogether ignored? Let me give an example of the sort of figures they get given to them, and upon which I dare say they build their ideas. A gentleman, with the initials, "H. S.," well known, wrote in the "Daily News" a letter attempting to show there, is no need for further expenditure, and basing his whole case on the fact that we have increased our expenditure in the last eleven years far more than any other Power. No doubt the hon. Gentleman (Mr. David Mason) read that. Let me just tell him what those figures were and what they ought to be. I have the return here in case it is challenged. The "Daily News" figures for 1901 were £13,500,000, and for 1911, £44,000,000. The £44,000,000 is correct, but the £13,500,000 ought to have been £31,000,000, a little mistake of an underestimate of £17,500,000. Now take the German expenditure. That was given at £12,500,000 for 1901, and £22,000,000 for 1911. The latter figures are correct, but as regards 1901, instead of £12,500,000, it should be £9,500,000. In this case the amount was over-estimated, and whereas the apparent increase for England was given at £30,500,000, instead of £13,000,000, the German increase was given at £9,500,000, instead of £12,500,000, which closely approximates our increase of £13,000,000. I submit that these are contemptible methods to employ, and more or less explain the attitude of some hon. Members opposite if they are led by these exaggerated figures instead of facing the honest, straightforward facts. I want to come to our position in the North Sea in 1914. The First Lord of the Admiralty last March gave out as his policy that 60 per cent, over Germany was to be aimed at. I want to know where that 60 per cent, is now?
§ Mr. EYRES-MONSELL
I am glad to be corrected. In March the right hon. Gentleman laid great stress on the value of the pre-"Dreadnoughts," and I should be the last to say that they are not valuable. It is a terrible thing to see vessels of this kind going out of commission. I saw the "Majestic" at about the time of her launch, and I considered her one of the finest ships in the world. That was only in 1896. But every addition we make to our battleships, every fresh one that is launched, tends to make these pre-"Dreadnoughts" obsolete. They are going off our effective list much faster than off the effective list of every other nation, although they are immensely superior to any of the pre-"Dreadnoughts" any other nation can produce. Consequently, our preponderance is rapidly diminishing, and it must at no very distant date come almost to vanishing point. The time is arriving when comparisons of naval strength will have to be made in terms of "Dreadnoughts" only. Before saying a word about our position in the North Sea in 1914, which I think is one of the weakest points in the speech of the right hon. Gentleman, I should like to refer to the Mediterranean. We are all on common ground when we say we must rely upon ourselves there. Everybody is agreed upon that. I am very glad indeed that the Mediterranean is not going to be abandoned, not only because of the enormous food supply which we obtain through it, but because of that prestige which is really so important in the East. Our fleet in the Mediterranean will be the four invincibles stationed at Malta. It is a very strong fleet, but I should like to ask the right hon. Gentleman on what basis he has selected four. We have dropped standard; we no longer have the two-Power standard. What, then, governs the selection of four? By 1915 we may have a one-Power standard only. Is that the respectable standard which the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs told us we should have? I do not think—and I say this with all deference—that the Fleet at Gibraltar will be of very much good, and I say this for three reasons. First there will be a tendency to count on it both at home and in the Mediterranean, and very likely it will not be available for either.
§ Mr. CHURCHILL
I quite clearly stated that its movements would be regulated by the main situation. There is no ambiguity 1296 in that, and in certain events it would no doubt come home, and not go into the Mediterranean.
§ Mr. EYRES-MONSELL
Of course, it is not wise to move big ships during times of diplomatic strain, and therefore the proper strategic point for the Fleet should be Malta. On the other hand, I think it would be forced to come home, probably through some panic, like that which occurred during the Spanish-American war, when America ordered all her ships home, this step being very largely due to a newspaper panic, which urged that the great thing was the protection of their shores. My last point is the position of our Fleet in the North Sea in 1914. To-day the First Lord rather took to task those who read from his speech of Monday that we should only have a superiority of four over Germany. Personally I am of opinion that that is the correct reading, after a careful examination of the right hon. Gentleman's speech in the OFFICIAL REPORT. The question, for all practical purposes, is not what we have got on paper, but how many have we instantly ready for action and to go out to sea. The right hon. Gentleman will probably admit that that is the primary consideration. The naval manoeuvres were all over in six days, and a naval action might be very swift indeed. I will ask the right hon. Gentleman if these figures are right. We shall have twenty-five ships absolutely ready in 1914?
§ Mr. EYRES-MONSELL
And eight "Formidables," with full nucleus crews which can be ready at less than twenty-four hours' notice. The right hon. Gentleman said if they were away from home they could not be ready in less than twenty-four hours and then the Gibraltar Fleet would be brought home, so that there would always be thirty-three.
§ Mr. EYRES-MONSELL
Can you depend at any time on forty-one? The eight at Gibraltar are at least three days away, and anything might happen in three days. In addition to that they will have to coal when they get home.
§ Mr. CHURCHILL
I should like to point out, if I may, that the margin I propose is a much larger margin than has ever existed hitherto. When I came to 1297 my present office, and for many years before that, we had maintained sixteen battleships only, and prior to that there were even less, so that under my proposal there is a really large increase in strength.
§ Mr. EYRES-MONSELL
I quite appreciate that in those days the situation was much worse, and when the right hon. Gentleman said we had not that Fleet it should be borne in mind we had nothing like the Fleet to face which we now have. Therefore, when the right hon. Gentleman accuses us of reading thirty-three as the minimum, I think I should be entitled to call it the maximum for all practical purposes. Out of that thirty-three has the right hon. Gentleman deducted those which will always be under repair or in dock? I do not know what the right hon. Gentleman allows for that, but if it is 10 per cent., although that is not very much, it would reduce the thirty-three to thirty, and that brings us almost on an equality with the twenty-nine German high sea Fleet. I should like to ask why the right hon. Gentleman said nothing about battle cruisers, although he mentioned battleships? I think our position in 1914 will be ten to Germany's six, but the four that have to be taken from the North Sea for the Mediterranean will reduce us to an equality in battle cruisers. The Committee must remember that battle cruisers, to all intents and purposes, are exactly the same as "Dreadnoughts." It is rather confusing using these terms, and the right hon. Gentleman has not helped us by using the terms "Dreadnoughts" and pre-"Dreadnoughts." Could we not lump battleships and battle cruisers together, and go back to the old title of ships of the line?
§ Mr. CHURCHILL
If you did that, you would have to count vessels like the "Shannon" and those of the "Natal" class, which are certainly the equal of the older battleships of several Continental Powers. Taking the whole combination, considering speed, gun power and armour, there is a number of these vessels, eight or nine of them, which certainly are capable of playing a decisive part.
§ Mr. EYRES-MONSELL
I think the demarcation between the pre-"Dreadnought" and the "Dreadnought" has been used in all the tables up to date. With regard to the position in 1914, I say you have cut it fine, and it is for you to 1298 do everything in your power, and the only thing you can do is to try to accelerate the present year's programme all you can, because the opportunities for doing so will not last very much longer. I wanted to say something about cruisers and destroyers, but I will not do so now. I desire to express my gratification that the Government have given extra pay to the men. We all realise how hard it is for men in the Service who are kept at home to live, especially the married men. As to the statement with regard to Canada, everybody congratulates the right hon. Gentleman upon that. We cannot say what the Dominions are going to do, but we may be sure that what they are going to do will be as generous as the Dominions have always been to this country. We do not know what they are going to do, and we shall not know for some time. In the meantime we ought to pay our own way, and to lay down a new unit altogether. Then, if the Dominions relieve us to any extent, we can drop it. It means paying a little more now and a little less later on. I conclude with another appeal to the "Little Navy" party. If they cannot agree with us, let them keep to themselves for a little bit, and let the world see that we are all one in this House, as I believe we are, and that we are all one in the Empire, as I believe we are determined to keep an absolutely supreme Navy, not from pride or arrogance in any way, but simply to keep the peace in the world, which I believe is the fervent wish of everybody.
I do not complain in the least of the tone of the hon. Gentleman's speech, because he brings a practical experience to bear which I do not possess. But there is one thing I should like to correct, and that is the effect of the Cawdor programme on the German navy. We are doing our best in providing a Navy adequate for the security of our shores, and I do not think it is quite fair to be told that we are responsible for the large increase of a neighbouring Power. The first German Navy Law was passed in 1898 at the time hon. Gentlemen opposite themselves were in office. The second Navy Law was passed in 1900, again when the hon. Gentlemen opposite were in office. The Cawdor Memorandum was dated 30th November, 1905. That was about a week before the General Election. What does it say?I have recently received the report of the Committee I appointed to consider the Estimates for 1299 1906–7. I am able to say that these various economies will allow the Board to diminish the sum for which Parliament will be asked by a further £1,500,000 beyond the £3,500,000 reduction made last spring.Then the hon. Gentleman said it is due to us that the German Navy Law was passed in 1906.
The hon. Gentleman accused us directly—those whom he called the, Little Navy party—of being responsible for the amendment of the German Navy Law in 1906. I do not want to make this a question of bickering across the floor of the House, but I might as well retort that it was this Cawdor Memorandum which reduced the Navy Esimates by £3,500,000, and then another £1,500,000, and which was issued to the world on 30th November, 1905, and which was responsible for the German Navy Law of 1906. You cannot get away from that. The German Navy Law was passed in May, 1906. We never said a word about our programme until July, 1906, therefore how can you say that the German Navy Law of 1906 was due to any action taken by the present Government? The case is convincing against it. I should not have mentioned the matter if the hon. Gentleman had not directly accused the Admiralty and the Government of being responsible for this increase in the Estimates of a neighbouring Power.
I am sure the hon. Gentleman, with his great experience of the Navy, will say that we were absolutely right in dropping these ships in 1906.
§ Mr. EYRES-MONSELL
The hon. Gentleman must not ask me a question of that sort; that I cannot possibly allow. I believe the hon. Gentleman and the Government were entirely wrong, and I shall always say so.
At any rate, the hon. Gentleman will allow that the four ships that we did lay down of the "Orion" class are greatly superior to the class of ships which would have been laid down in 1906, 1907, and 1908. I am sure the hon. Gentleman will say it is the worst possible form of economy to build ships before you want them. We did not want them then. They are in commission now, and they are 1300 much more powerful than the ships which would have been built then. I do not want to bring party into this matter, but hon. Gentlemen must not attack us. We have got an incomparably superior unit in the four "Orion's" to what we should have had had we not dropped the ships which were mentioned in the Cawdor programme.
I want to say a few words with regard to the Amendment. I hope he does not think that it is a pleasure to us to propose these Navy Estimates. We would infinitely rather they were less. They are forced upon us, not through our own will or desire, but by the action of other Powers with which we have to compete. My hon. Friend in his speech said once or twice that we must do something. That is a very vague assertion. He does not say what we are to do. I would like to have that translated into something more definite.
§ Mr. D. MASON indicated dissent.
§ The CHAIRMAN
I would ask hon. Members on both sides to be good enough to think over the points they desire to place before the Committee, and subsequently they can state them when called upon to speak.
Hon. Members have brought forward no alternative schemes to the proposals of the Government to provide for the defences of the country. I do not think the hon. Member for Devonport (Sir C. Kinloch-Cooke) was very gracious to us for the concessions we have made to the dockyard employés. We have made important concessions. Here, again, I do not want to bring up the figures, but I would say that we have made enormous changes in the conditions of the men employed by the Government. Let me tell the hon. Gentleman opposite that the number of men employed in the dockyards on 30th December, 1905, when the Conservative Government went out of office, was 27,061. On the 13th July this year there were no less than 36,718. That does not show that we have been neglecting the dockyards or the interests of the dockyard ports. Take Devonport, which is in the county I have the honour to represent. On 30th December, 1905, the number employed there was about 7,200. Now it is 10,905, an increase of more than 50 per cent., and yet the hon. Gentleman says we have done nothing! We have given increases of pay amounting to £140,000. We have, I believe, brought the dockyards. 1301 up to a very full state of perfection for the work they have to do. We are endeavouring to treat the workers in the dockyards perfectly fairly. The hon. Gentleman who preceded me developed the theme which was mentioned earlier in the Debate about twenty-nine German as against thirty-three British ships in the North Sea at a certain date. The First Lord dealt with that very fully this afternoon, and I do not think that I can add anything to what he said. The First Lord has taken the House and the country very fully and frankly into his confidence. He has told the House and the country the exact truth. He has concealed nothing, and he has exaggerated nothing. I admit there is a difficulty, because he is between two fires. One is my hon. Friend the Member for Coventry (Mr. D. Mason) and the other the Noble Lord the Member for Portsmouth (Lord C. Beresford). I must say I enjoyed the Noble Lord's speech vastly. It was a most interesting and amusing speech, but when he finished I asked myself, "What is it all about?" except that I think we were to have a crisis again in 1914. The Board of Admiralty have endeavoured to provide adequately for the safety and naval defence of the Empire. We believe that these Estimates are no more than sufficient, but that they are sufficient to secure the safety of our commerce and of our shores.
§ Mr. LONG
I am extremely sorry that the Civil Lord of the Admiralty (Mr. Lambert) thought it right, in the beginning of his remarks, to use language which distinctly conveyed the insinuation—if it was not a charge—that the Memorandum issued by the late Lord Cawdor, was a political document and not a genuine declaration of policy of the then Board of Admiralty. I regret it for two reasons. First of all Lord Cawdor is dead; in the second place, he was a man of the highest personal honour, a man who rendered the utmost public service to the country, and I am confident that whatever hon. Gentlemen opposite may think—all of us who are engaged in this party warfare are inclined to take occasionally unfair views both of the principles and the action of our opponents—Lord Cawdor was actuated by the sole desire to do his duty by the country as First Lord of the Admiralty. I am sorry that the Civil Lord did not either make his charge definite or withdraw it. I do not know whether the hon. Member (Mr. Mason) means to divide. If he does press his Amendment to a Division 1302 my friends and I will certainly vote with the Government. I am bound to say with my hon. Friend the Member for Evesham (Mr. Eyres-Monsell) that if the hon. Member for Coventry did not speak as the representative of those who desire—I do not want to be offensive and I will not say a little Navy—a smaller Navy, then I do not know what was the object of his speech, or the meaning of his Amendment. Therefore, we shall vote against it, because we are opposed entirely to any attempt to reduce the proposals for which the Government are responsible. The hon. Member did not attempt to indicate what is the alternative policy that he desires. He talked vaguely about diplomacy. The hon. Member is, I am sure, a man of a high order of intelligence. Does he really moan that he thinks there is some unknown method of diplomacy by which Foreign Secretaries and Cabinets are going to prevent a country going to war when that country believes that her own future and power depend upon going to war? What more can diplomacy do than it has done?
§ Mr. LONG
It is as true to-day as ever it was that however clever diplomats may be they are of very little avail unless they are backed by a strong, powerful, and sharp sword. Therefore the suggestion of the hon. Gentleman is one which is wholly indefinite. For these reasons we shall vote with the Government against the Amendment. But it must not be supposed that in doing so we are expressing any accord with the policy of the Government on this momentous occasion. There is a great deal to be said for and against the policy of great naval armaments. I am not going to argue the question now. There may be an opportunity of saying something about it to-morrow, when the whole field will be opened. I desire to safeguard myself and my friends by saying quite plainly that while we shall support the Government against the Amendment of the hon. Member we shall not do it because we think that the Government are. doing all that they ought to do, or because we do not think that even greater efforts ought to be made with the supreme moment to make clear to the world that this country intends to remain as she has been for so many years, paramount on the seas and able to hold her own, to stand by the oversea Dominions and maintain the supremacy of the British Empire.
§ Mr. WHELER
The Civil Lord, in his concluding observations, made reference to the Noble Lord the Member for Portsmouth (Lord Charles Beresford), but I cannot help thinking that the House will recognise that whatever may be the experience of the hon. Gentleman he cannot claim to have as much experience with regard to naval matters as the Noble Lord. The First Lord of the Admiralty, in his statement this afternoon, talked about making ample naval provision for the national security; but that seems a rather extraordinary statement to make, because here we are discussing a question which comes suddenly, but which was not mentioned by the First Lord when he brought in his Estimates six months ago. At any rate, it does seem to me that this sort of statement, coupled with the fact that we were told the Mediterranean was to be abandoned, and now that it is decided not to abandon it, shows that the policy of the Government is a policy which is liable to change from day to day for political reasons. That is not going to inspire the country with any great confidence as to our naval affairs. I wish to ask one or two questions with regard to dock accommodation. As one who represents a Division in which is Sheerness, I am naturally interested in the floating dock which is established there. I think the hon. Member for Chelmsford (Mr. Pretyman) mentioned the fact that a dock has been established in an isolated reach of the River Medway, about six miles from Chatham and two or three miles from Sheer-ness, and he asked a question, which I should like to have answered if possible. Why this dock could not be brought nearer to the dockyard? I should also like to know whether it is not the fact that there is sufficient deep water much nearer to Sheerness to which that dock could have been brought, and where it could be reached much more easily than where it is at the present time? So far as I understand, the men are to be brought over from Chatham to work the dock. There are many times of the year when there is fog and other difficulties on the Medway which would undoubtedly render it troublesome for the men to get to their work at the dock, with the result that there must be much loss of time in the working of that dock. I should very much like to know whether it would not have been possible to have brought the dock nearer to the fixed dock at Sheerness in 1304 the same way as in the case of the floating dock at Portsmouth? While we are discussing an increase in the number of ships, I should like to know why we are not making further dock accommodation on the North-East Coast. We are preparing for possible warfare on the North Sea —though we hope it will not arise—yet at the same time we have very few places where to increase our dock accommodation for the quick repair of vessels in time of war. From the Medway to Rosyth there is no suitable spot for a floating dock at the present time, but I would ask very humbly whether the Admiralty have ever considered the possibility of a natural harbour like Cromarty, in Scotland, where a floating dock could be established with great advantage, and also form a natural harbour where large ships could be accommodated? One word with reference to the situation of the Caledonian Canal, which, I believe. comes within four miles of the Firth. It would be quite possible for a fleet stationed there in time of war to have its supplies brought up on that canal from behind, and they could be of service without ever going into the zone of warfare at all on the other side of the coast. That is only a suggestion, and I would like to know whether that natural port has ever been considered by the Admiralty in connection with the northern portion of our coast. I do not want to bring the question of the dockyards into the question which has been discussed to-night, but there is a matter I have been asked to mention with reference to the establishment, and it is this: The right hon. Gentleman knows that skilled labourers have a deduction of 1s. 6d. per week from their wages, which reach, I understand, 26s. 6d. per week. The skilled labourer gets considerably less wage per week than the shipwright, while the deduction is the same. For thirty years that amount is deducted, and it totals in each case something like £117. When the pension is given at the end of the thirty years the skilled labourers get a pension of £27 17s. 3d. and a gratuity of £74 6s. The shipwrights, with the same deduction, get a pension of £33 and a gratuity of £88 11s. 10d. The skilled labourers feel that as they pay the same in the deduction they should receive an equal pension and gratuity, and it does seem hard that it is not so. I do not understand why the amount should not be the same, and in the interests of the skilled labourers I would ask the right hon. Gentle- 1305 man to consider the question. With reference to the dockyards, I am certain, speaking for the dockyard I represent, that we are very grateful for what is being clone in giving what is practically a shilling per week increase to most of the grades in the yard. At the same time, that increase has been long overdue, and has been deserved for many years, and the right hon. Gentleman will pardon me for saying that, though he gave it with a great flourish of trumpets, he must realise that it is only due to those men who have been asking for it for years.
§ Mr. FALLE
The Member for Coventry (Mr. David Mason) told us that the £44,000,000 we are spending is exactly double what the Germans are spending. That is not exactly accurate, as if he takes another estimate of the Germans he will find that both two estimates are practically equal. I am glad to see that the hon. Member agrees with me. I will not touch on the larger question which has been well threshed out. When we return in October we hope there will be a well considered scheme giving the men on the lower deck the position and pay which ought to be theirs. The Civil Lord has told us that in his opinion the Government have done all they possibly can for the dockyards since 1906. But since that date the Estimates have increased by £13,000.000, and his party have voted themselves £400 a year. It is a small matter, but it is more than the shilling a week increase to the skilled and unskilled labourers, and considerably more than the sixpence a week to the shipwrights. The poll tax takes 6½d. a week from these men, so that at the best they are a halfpenny a week worse off than before. The writers in the dockyards are asking to be established. I hope to be able to bring their case, which is a strong one, before the right hon. Gentleman and to convince him of its strength. I have before referred to the question of badges. All badges, good conduct and long service, carry gratuities -with them except in the case of chief writers, chief engine room artificers, chief electricians, and gentlemen of that class. I think that that is a matter which should be very carefully considered by the right hon. Gentleman. Up to 1907 certain men in the Marines did not receive the gratuities with the medals, but the practice was then thought unfair, and the gratuities are now given. I trust the right hon. Gentleman will see that the 1306 withholding of the gratuity in the cases I have mentioned is absolutely undefen-sible. My hon. Friend the Member for Devonport has already referred to the question of certain workmen and their pensions. I understand that a pension scheme has been evolved at Woolwich and found to be financially unsound. I see no reason why it should be unsound. The men are willing to contribute, but they have not been asked how much they are ready to contribute. If they are willing to do so, I do not see why the men should not increase their contributions until the scheme is financially sound.
In the few minutes that are left I desire to refer to the design of the battleships which at present compose our fleet. It is assumed, I think, that the "Dreadnought" design is the Alpha and Omega in battleship construction. Some hon. Gentleman says "No," but I think that is the case. I believe it also to be the case that there is a growing opinion in the Navy that the "Dreadnought" design in battleships, the all-big-gun type of ship, is not all that it ought to be, and that a ship of a different design, might well be introduced. I start with the assumption that the way to defeat your enemy in a naval battle is to disable his personnel and silence his guns. I do not want to dogmatise, but I have come to the conclusion that the faith that is placed in the armour should be placed in the guns. It used to be an axiom in naval tactics—anyway up to the middle of last century—that the gun was the chief means of offence and the best kind of defence. In the middle of last century armour was introduced, and the designers of battleships began to place great faith in it. They looked almost entirely to armour protection instead of placing their trust in the gun. What has been the result? It is seen in the "Dreadnought" type of vessel—the all-big-gun ship—in which gun-power is sacrificed to armour and to speed. The right hon. Gentleman the First Lord cannot say that gun-power in these ships is not sacrificed to the-weight of armour.
The right hon. Gentleman does deny that. Well, what I submit to him is this: that to-day there is a race between projectiles and armour. A 12-inch gun will throw a projectile of 850 lbs. that will pierce seventeen inches of Krupp steel at 3,000 yards. A 33.5-inch gun, such as is carried by vessels of the "Orion" class, will throw a 1,250lb. projectile and pierce twelve inches of Krupp steel at 12,000 yards. My point is this: that too much reliance is placed nowadays upon armour. If, when a certain thickness of armour has been produced, it is found possible to produce a gun firing a projectile to pierce that armour, where is the race between armour and projectile to end? What is the maximum thickness of armour necessary to keep out the high explosive shell? In the Russo-Japanese war the greatest damage done, and the largest number of ships put out of action, was by the high explosive shell on the unprotected parts rather than by armour-piercing projectiles. I submit to the First Lord, and he is well aware of the fact that in the Navy at the present moment there is no consensus of opinion that the "Dreadnought" type of battleship is the best. I submit that it is a matter well worthy of consideration to ascertain whether or not the type of ship in which there is more gun power and
§ less armour would not be the more satisfactory type of ship in which to go into battle.
I feel that very little thanks or gratitude has been extended to the Admiralty for the very considerable concession they have made to the dockyard workers in the country. They have started on the right lines; they have first tried to raise the pay of the men at the lower rung of the ladder and I think that step is a very real step in advance and will be received with gratitude by the workers in the different dockyards. I desire to associate myself with other dockyard members with regard to the pension scheme for hired men. They have a very real grievance and I believe the Admiralty, after they investigate their case, will find that a scheme can actuarialy be worked out to which the men will subscribe and by which they will get pensions. I hope when the deputation comes to the Admiralty they will carefully consider this question and see the reasonableness of it.
§ Question put, "That a sum, not exceeding £3,493,700, be granted for the said Service."
§ The Committee divided: Ayes, 32; Noes, 281.1309
|Division No. 159.]||AYES.||[10.59 p.m.|
|Adamson, william||Hodge, John||O'Grady, James|
|Baker, Joseph Allen (Finsbury, E.)||Hogge, James Myles||Parker, James (Halifax)|
|Barnes, George N.||Holt, Richard Durning||Richardson, Thomas (Whitehaven)|
|Bentham, G. J.||Hope, John Deans (Haddington)||Rowntree, Arnold|
|Brace, William||Jones, Edgar (Merthyr Tydvil)||Smith, Albert (Lanes., Clitheroe)|
|Brunner, John F. L.||Jones, Leif Stratten (Notts, Rushcliffe)||Taylor, John W. (Durham)|
|Bryce, J. Annan||Jowett, Frederick William||Wilson, W. T. (Westhoughton)|
|Chancellor, H. G.||King, J. (Somerset, N.)|
|Clough, William||Lambert, Richard (Wilts, Cricklade)|
|De Forest, Baron||Lawson, Sir W. (Cumb'rld, Cockerm'th)||TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—Mr.|
|Glanville, H. J.||Lough, Rt. Hon. Thomas||David Mason and Mr. Pointer.|
|Goldstone Frank||Martin, Joseph|
|Abraham, William (Dublin Harbour)||Bathurst, Charles (Wilts, Wilton)||Cawley, Sir Frederick (Prestwich)|
|Agg-Gardner, James Tynte||Beach, Hon Michael Hugh Hicks||Cawley, H. T. (Lanes., Heywood)|
|Agnew, Sir George William||Beauchamp, Sir Edward||Cecil, Lord R. (Herts, Hitchin)|
|Ainsworth, John Stirling||Beck, Arthur Cecil||Chaloner, Col. R. G. W.|
|Allen, Arthur Acland (Dumbartonshire)||Benn, Ion H. (Greenwich)||Churchill, Rt. Hon. Winston S.|
|Allen, Rt. Hon. Charles P. (Stroud)||Benn, W. W. (T. Hamlets, St. Geo.)||Clancy, John Joseph|
|Amery, L. C. M. S.||Beresford, Lord Charles||Collins, Godfrey P. (Greenock)|
|Anson, Rt. Hon. Sir William R.||Boland, John Plus||Collins, Stephen (Lambeth)|
|Archer-Shee, Major M.||Booth, Frederick Handel||Compton-Rickett, Rt. Hon. Sir J.|
|Armitage, R.||Bowerman, Charles W.||Condon, Thomas Joseph|
|Ashley, Wilfrid W.||Boyton, James||Cornwall, Sir Edwin A.|
|Baird, J. L.||Brady, P. J.||Cotton, William Francis|
|Baker, H. T. (Accrington)||Brocklehurst, W. B.||Craig, Herbert J. (Tynemouth)|
|Balcarres, Lord||Burke, E. Haviland-||Craik, Sir Henry|
|Balfour, Sir Robert (Lanark)||Burn, Col. C. R.||Crawshay-Williams, Eliot|
|Banbury, Sir Frederick George||Burns, Rt. Hon. John||Crichton-Stuart, Lord Ninian|
|Baring, Sir Godfrey (Barnstaple)||Butcher, J, G.||Crooks, William|
|Barlow, Montague (Salford, South)||Cameron, Robert||Crumley, Patrick|
|Barran, Sir John M.||Campbell, Capt. Duncan F. (Ayr, N.)||Cullinan, John|
|Barton, William||Carr-Gomm, H. W.||Dalrymple, Viscount|
|Davies, E. William (Eifion)||Joyce, Michael||Rawhnson, John Frederick Peel|
|Davies, Timothy (Lines., Louth)||Keating, Matthew||Rea, Rt. Hon. Russell (South Shields)|
|Dawes, James Arthur||Kelly, Edward||Rea, Walter Russell (Scarborough)|
|Delany, William||Kennedy, Vincent Paul||Reddy, Michael|
|Denman, Hon. Richard Douglas||Kilbride, Denis||Renoall, Athclstan|
|Dickson, Rt. Hon. C. S.||Kinloch-Cooke, Sir Clement||Richards, Thomas|
|Donelan, Captain A.||Lamb, Ernest Henry||Richardson, Albion (Pcckham)|
|Duffy, William J.||Lambert, Rt. Hon. G. (Devon, S. Molton)||Roberts, Charles H. (Lincoln)|
|Duke. Henry Edward||Lardncr, James Carrige Rushe||Roberts, George H. (Norwich)|
|Duncan, J. Hastings (York, Otley)||Larmor, Sir J.||Robertson, sir G. Scott (Bradford)|
|Edwards, Sir Francis (Radnor)||Law, Hugh A. (Donegal, West)||Robertson, J. M. (Tyneside)|
|Elibank, Rt. Hon. Master of||Lee, Arthur Hamilton||Roch, Walter F. (Pembroke)|
|Elverston, Sir Harold||Levy, Sir Maurice||Roche, Augustine (Louth)|
|Esmonde, Dr. John (Tipperary, N.)||Lewis, John Herbert||Roe, Sir Thomas|
|Esmonde, Sir Thomas (Wexford, N.)||Lloyd, George Ambrose||Rose, Sir Charles Day|
|Eyres-Monsell, Bolton M.||Locker-Lampson, G. (Salisbury)||Rowlands, James|
|Falconer, James||Locker-Lampson, O. (Ramsey)||Runciman, Rt. Hon. Walter|
|Falle, Bertram Godfray||Lockwood, Rt. Hon. Lt.-Col. A. R.||Rutherford, Watson (L'pool, W. Derby)|
|Farrell, James Patrick||Long, Rt. Hon. Walter||Samuel, Rt. Hon. H. L. (Cleveland)|
|Fell, Arthur||Lundon, Thomas||Sanders, Robert A.|
|Ferens. Rt. Hon. Thomas Robinson||Lynch, Arthur Alfred||Sanderson, Lancelot|
|French, Peter||MacGhee, Richard||Scanlan, Thomas|
|Fiennes, Hon. Eustace Edward||Mackinder, H. J.||Seely, Col. Rt. Hon. J. E. B.|
|Fitzroy, Hon. Edward A.||Macnamara, Rt. Hon. Dr. T. J.||Sheehy, David|
|Flavin, Michael Joseph||MacNeill, John G. S. (Donegal, South)||Smith, Harold (Warrington)|
|Fletcher, John Samuel (Hampstead)||Macpherson, James Ian||Smyth, Thomas F. (Leitrim, S.)|
|Furness. Stephen W.||MacVeagh, Jeremiah||Soames, Arthur Wellesley|
|Gelder, Sir William Alfred||McCallum, Sir John M.||Spear, Sir John Ward|
|Gibbs, George Abraham||M'Laren, Hon. H. O. (Leics.)||Stanier, Beville|
|Gladstone, W. G. C.||M'Micking, Major Gilbert||Steel-Maitland, A. D.|
|Glazebrook, Capt. Philip K.||Markham, Sir Arthur Basil||Stewart, Gershom|
|Goddard, Sir Daniel Ford||Marks, Sir George Croydon||Summers, James Woolley|
|Goldman, C. S.||Marshall, Arthur Harold||Sykes, Mark (Hull, Central)|
|Goldsmith, Frank||Mason, James F. (Windsor)||Talbot, Lord E.|
|Greenwood, Granville G. (Peterborough)||Mr.sterman, Rt. Hon. C. F. G.||Tennant, Harold John|
|Greig. Colonel J. W.||Meehaii, Francis E. (Leitrim, N.)||Terrell, George (Wilts, N. W.)|
|Gretton, John||Menzies, Sir Walter||Thomson, W. Mitchell- (Down, H.)|
|Griffith. Ellis J.||Molloy. M.||Thome, G. R. (Wolverhampton)|
|Guest, Major Hon. C. H. C. (Pembroke)||Molteno, Percy Alport||Touche, George Alexander|
|Guest, Hon. Frederick E. (Dorset, E.)||Mond, Sir Alfred Moritz||Toulmin, Sir George|
|Guinness, Hon. W.E. (Bury S. Edmunds)||Money, L. G, Chiozza||Trevelyan, Charles Philips|
|Guinness. Hon. Rupert (Essex, S. E.)||Mooney, John J.||Tullibardine, Marquess of|
|Gwynn, Stephen Luclus (Galway)||Morgan, George Hay||Ure, Rt. Hon. Alexander|
|Hackett, J.||Morrell, Philip||Valentia, Viscount|
|Hall, F. (Yorks, Normanton)||Morton, Alpheus Cleophas||Wadsworth, John|
|Harcourt. Robert V. (Montrose)||Muldoon, John||Walsh, Stephen (Lanes., Ince)|
|Harmsworth, Cecil (Luton, Beds)||Munro, R.||Ward, John (Stoke-upon-Trent)|
|Harmsworth, R. L. (Caithness-shire)||Murray, Captain Hon. A. C.||Warner, Sir Thomas Courtenay|
|Harvey, W. E. (Derbyshire, N.E.)||Nannetti, Joseph P.||Wason, Rt. Hon. E. (Clackmannan)|
|Harwood, George||Needham, Christopher T.||Wason, John Cathcart (Orkney)|
|Havelock-Allan, Sir Henry||Newton, Harry Kottinghahm||Webb, H.|
|Hayden, John Patrick||Nolan, Joseph||Wedgwood, Josiah C.|
|Hayward, Evan||Norton. Captain Cecil William||Wheler, Granville C. H.|
|Hazleton. Richard (Galway, N.)||O'Brien, Patrick (Kilkenny)||White, Major G. D. (Lanes., Southport)|
|Helme, Sir Norval Watson||O'Connor, John (Kildare, N.J||White, J. Dundas (Glas., Tradeston)|
|Hemmerde, Edward George||O'Doherty, Philip||White, Patrick (Meath, North)|
|Henderson, Major H. (Berks, Abingdon)||O'Dowd, John||Whittaker, Rt. Hon. Sir Thomas P.|
|Henry, Sir Charles||O'Kelly, James (Roscommon, N.)||Whyte, A. F.|
|Herbert, Col. Sir Ivor (Hon., s.)||O'Malley. William||Wiles, Thomas|
|Hewins, William Herbert Samuel||O'Neill. Dr. Charles (Armagh, S.)||Wilkie, Alexander|
|Hickman, Col. T. E.||O'Shaughnessy, P. J.||Williams, Llewellyn (Carmarthen)|
|Higham, John Sharp||O'Sullivan, Timothy||Williams, P. (Middlesbrough)|
|Hill, Sir Clement L. (Shrewsbury)||Parker, Sir Gilbert (Gravesend)||Williamson, Sir Archibald|
|Hills. John Waller (Durham)||Pearce, Robert (Staffs, Leek)||Willoughby, Major Hon. Claude|
|Hinds, John||Phillips, John (Longford, S.)||Wilson, Hon. G. G. (Hull, W.)|
|Holmes, Daniel Turner||Pole-Carew, Sir R.||Wolmer, Viscount|
|Hope, Harry (Bute)||Pollock, Ernest Murray||Wood, John (Stalybridge)|
|Hope, James Fitzalan (Sheffield)||Pretyman, Ernest George||Wood, Rt. Hon. T. McKinnon (Glas.)|
|Howard, Hon. Geoffrey||Price, C. E. (Edinburgh Central)||Yate, Col. C. E.|
|Hughes, S. L.||Price, Sir Robert J. (Norfolk, E.)||Young, W. (Perthshire, E.)|
|Hume-Williams, William Ellis||Priestley, Sir W. E. B. (Bradford, E.)||Yoxall, Sir James Henry|
|Isaacs, Rt. Hon. Sir Rufus||Pringle, William M. R.|
|Jackson, Sir John||Pryce-Jones, Colonel E.||TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—Mr.|
|Jones. H. Haydn (Merioneth)||Radford, G. H.||Illingworth and Mr. Gulland.|
|Jones, W. S. Glyn- (Stepney)||Rattan, Peter Wilson|
Original Question put accordingly, and agreed to.
§ Original Question again proposed.
§ It being after Eleven of the clock, and objection being taken to further proceeding, the CHARMAN proceeded to interrupt the business.1310
§ Whereupon, Mr. CHURCHILL rose in his place, and claimed to move, "That the Question be now put."1311
§ Whereupon the Chairman left the Chair to make his report to the House.
§ Resolution to be reported to-morrow; Committee to sit again to-morrow.