§ Colonel BURN
asked the First Lord of the Admiralty if admirals superintendent of dockyards were recently summoned to the Admiralty on official business; whether, on arrival, they were ordered to report themselves at the House of Commons; and if he will say what was the reason for this order?2150W
§ Mr. CHURCHILL
The Admirals Superintendent of the Chatham, Devon-port, and Portsmouth yards were asked to attend at the Admiralty on Wednesday last, 13th May, for the purpose of considering whether, by a possible readjustment of work between the yards mentioned, certain contemplated discharges of workmen might be avoided. These officers attended at the Admiralty, and the matter was discussed there. It was necessary that my right hon. Friend the Financial Secretary should also see them, and as he was in attendance upon the House at the time, they were requested to meet him in his room during the course of the afternoon. This they did, together with the Director of Dockyards and Dock yard Work, and in consequence certain readjustments of work were put forward and approved, which my right hon Friend informs me will to a great extent render unnecessary discharges of workmen which would otherwise have had to take place. I do not understand why this procedure should call for notice, nor how the hon. and gallant Member came to be informed of the movements of officials engaged upon Admiralty business.