§ Mr. BURGOYNE
asked the First Lord of the Admiralty the causes of delay in launching the battleship "Audacious"; whether it will be possible to speed her construction so that she may be completed approximately by her contract date; and what was that date?
§ Dr. MACNAMARA
The principal cause of delay in the launch of the battleship "Audacious" has been a shortage of particular classes of necessary skilled labour. This has been intensified by special local conditions, for example, the grounding of the "Mauretania," which created large and unexpected demands for local labour. There have also been minor labour troubles. As stated by the First Lord on the 1st instant, the contract date for her completion is 16th January, 1913. It is expected that she will be completed by August, 1913. It will not be practicable to speed her construction so that she may be completed approximately by her contract date.