69. Sir H. COWAN
asked the President of the Board of Trade whether he is aware that the sight test for candidates for mates' and skippers' fishing certificates is con- 2208 ducted on shore by shining coloured lights into a glass in a dark room; and whether, as this method is considered unsatisfactory by fishermen, he will take steps with a view to' having these tests made at sea under practical conditions?
§ Mr. BRIDGEMAN
I am aware that the colour vision test is conducted in the manner described in the question, and no objections to this method appear to have reached the Board of Trade from fishermen, at least in recent years. The whole question of sight tests for persons serving or intending to serve in the merchant or fishing services was fully considered by a Departmental Committee in 1912. I am sending the hon. Member a copy of the Committee's Report, from which it will be seen that they were opposed to vision tests being conducted at sea, and I am not prepared to adopt that system of examination.