§ Mr. ROSE
asked the First Lord of the Admiralty whether definite arrangements have been made with the Forth Shipbuilding Company for the transfer of the premises and plant of His Majesty's dockyard, Pembroke; and, if so, will he state the terms and the reasons which have actuated the Admiralty in making the arrangements?
§ Mr. ROSE
asked the First Lord of the. Admiralty whether, in connection with the proposed sale of Pembroke Dockyard, due consideration has been given to the fact that about 3,000 workmen, chiefly skilled, are employed there, and that of this number 900 are on the establishment and will be transferable to other Government yards, and that grave local difficulties are likely to accrue as a result of the inevitable dislocation of industry involved in the actual closing of a dockyard which has existed for fully a century?
§ Mr. LONG
The hon. Member refers, of course, to the leasing of Pembroke Dock to a commercial firm, an offer from which is under consideration at the present time. Consideration has been given to the position of the workmen now in the employment of the Government at Pembroke Dock. The Admiralty have invited information from the established workmen as to the numbers who would wish to be transferred to other Royal dockyards rather than that their service should be terminated under the Admiralty in order that they might continue their employment in Pembroke Dock in the service of the firm. The difficulties in connection with the matter are fully appreciated; and I may assure the hon. Member that, in the event of the lease being carried into effect, all possible consideration would be shown to the workpeople who 549W have hitherto been employed in the Admiralty service.
§ Mr. R. YOUNG
asked the First Lord of the Admiralty what considerations have actuated his Department in ignoring the recommendation of the Colwyn Committee that the two slipways at His Majesty's Dockyard, Pembroke, should be utilised for mercantile marine construction; and what are the difficulties opposed to such construction under State auspices, in view of the urgent demand for cargo tonnage?
§ Mr. LONG
The recommendations of the Colwyn Committee are not being ignored, but are under consideration. In the case of Pembroke, however, as I have just stated, an offer has been received from a private firm to lease the yard; and this is being carefully considered, as it is possible that it would ensure the facilities there being made full use of permanently for merchant ship construction; whereas the Colwyn Committee recognised that the building of merchant tonnage by the Admiralty could only be a temporary expedient carried out on a limited scale.