HC Deb 23 June 1972 vol 839 cc187-8W
Mr. Luce

asked the Minister of State for Defence how much the forthcoming refit of the Royal Yacht "Britannia"will cost; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Kirk

The Royal Yacht "Britannia" completed building in January, 1954. Since then she has steamed nearly half a million miles, a quarter of this during the last three years, without a major refit or modernisation such as is normally given to other H.M. Ships every eight or nine years. Because of the increased usage in recent years, major work on the Royal Yacht has been deferred, but the time has now come when it is essential for her mechanical and electrical systems to be given a thorough overhaul and replacement where necessary and to modernise certain facilities which have fallen well below present day standards. It is therefore intended to give the Royal Yacht a refit during the period September, 1972, to June. 1973, at a cost of about £1.7 million at current prices.

The main improvement which it is intended to carry out is the provision of modern accommodation for the crew whose living conditions have fallen well below those of other ships in the Fleet. The improvements will include conversion from hammocks to full bunk sleeping, the provision of dining halls, recreation spaces, air-conditioning and improved bathroom facilities.

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