HC Deb 11 March 1952 vol 497 c1253
44. Sir David Robertson

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland if he is aware of the arrest of the motor fishing vessel, "Blenheim," in Thurso Harbour, at the instance of the Longhope lifeboat crew who are claiming property salvage on their own account, including expenses incurred by the Royal National Lifeboat Institution; and if he will, in the interests of food production and full employment, take steps to have this vessel released from arrest.

Mr. J. Stuart

This matter is at present the subject of an action for declarator before the Court of Session and I have no authority to interfere. I understand that the arrestment could be withdrawn at any time by the defenders (who are not fishermen) giving a bond for £1,000, or consigning the money.

Sir D. Robertson

Will my right hon. Friend draw the attention of this fine old society and this very gallant crew to the fact that their action savours more of wrecking and piracy than of life saving? Will he take steps to ensure that it does not occur again?

Mr. Stuart

I can only reply that the Royal National Lifeboat Institution is a voluntary organisation for which I have no responsibility. This may be an example of private enterprise.