HC Deb 30 May 1912 vol 38 c1714W

asked the First Lord of the Admiralty when the Fourth. Squadron of the First Fleet will be completed by being made up from its present strength of four battleships to eight; when battleships will be allocated to the Sixth, and Eighth Squadrons to complete the Second and Third Fleets; and, when the-Eight Squadrons are complete, how many battleships will be available as a reserve in case of necessity?


Upon the "King George V.," "Centurion," and "Ajax," joining the Second Battle Squadron-during the early part of next year, the "Lord Nelson," "Agamemnon," and "Dreadnought," will transfer to the Fourth Squadron. These with the "Albemarle," which is now refitting, and will be ready in December, will complete its strength. The arrival in the Fleet of the "Audacious," in the autumn of 1913, and of the "Iron Duke," "Marlborough," "Benbow," and "Delhi," in 1914–15, will move the five "Duncans" from the Fourth to the Sixth Squadron. The ships of this year's programme will when ready cause a movement of other vessels which will complete the Sixth Squadron early in 1915. The Eighth Battle Squadron, which has been reinforced by the "Swift-sure" and "Triumph," is already complete.