HC Deb 24 October 1918 vol 110 c945W

asked the First Lord of the Admiralty whether his attention has been drawn to the demand in Ireland for a full and searching public inquiry into all the circumstances connected with the sinking of the "Leinster" and the refusal of the Admiralty to give adequate protection to the Kingstown and Holyhead mail boats; and whether, in view of the state of public feeling, the Admiralty will reconsider their decision and order a public inquiry?


I explained to my hon. Friend on 15th October that on all occasions of vessels being torpedoed, sunk, or suffering damage, full reports from the senior naval officer, the ships concerned, patrol or escort vessels, or any person who can give information attending the circumstances of the case, are forwarded, These reports, as I said, are thoroughly scrutinised, including the circumstances which led up to the casualty. That procedure is being followed in the case of the "Leinster." As regards a public inquiry, much as the Admiralty would court it, particularly in view of the criticism conveyed in the second part of this question, the proposal cannot possibly be acceded to. The information laid before such an inquiry respecting our methods of dealing with the submarine would be of the greatest possible value to the enemy.