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Royal Navy

Volume 161: debated on Wednesday 14 March 1923

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Government Contractors (Poplar)


asked the First Lord of the Admiralty whether Messrs. Green, Silley, and Weir, and Messrs. Fletcher, Son, and Fearnall, of Poplar, are on the Government's list of contractors doing ships' repairs and engineering work; and whether either of these firms have recently done any work for the Government or are now doing any work; for the Government?

Both firms are noted in the list of firms eligible to carry out ship-repair work for the Admiralty. The Admiralty have not had occasion to utilise their services for some time past, except that a small order has recently been carried out by Messrs. Fletcher, Son, and Fearnall.



asked the First Lord of the Admiralty if he is aware that the grant of the clasps for the Royal Navy sanctioned by His Majesty in 1920 are still delayed; can he say if such delay is due to waiting for the Army or to expense; if the latter, if the delay would be obviated if officers and men paid for such clasps; and if he can give the approximate cost of such clasps?


asked the Financial Secretary to the Admiralty whether it is yet settled what clasps are to be issued for Naval service during the War; and, if so, when are they to be issued?

The conditions governing the award of Naval clasps are laid down in Admiralty Fleet Order 2051 of 1920, but all action as to their free issue has been suspended owing to the urgent necessity for economy. The sale of clasps is considered undesirable. The total cost, including the issuing of Naval clasps is estimated at £120,000.

Is it a fact that the delay is due to the junior Service standing in the way, the cost to the junior Service being £1,500,000?

Of course there is always a prime necessity for the two Services working together in the matter

Is it not a fact that His Majesty has approved of the Naval clasps, and that the Army clasps are not as yet being considered? Is the Navy to wait until the Army demand is accepted?



asked the First Lord of the Admiralty if the artificer-apprentices who are now being discharged and who are to be taken on in the Royal Air Force will be allowed to engage for long service; will they be fully-fledged tradesmen after serving in the Royal Air Force and will the Admiralty take them back as engine-room artificers in the event of there being vacancies?

These artificer-apprentices will be transferred to the Royal Air Force to serve the un-expired part of their 12 years' engagement in the Navy. The answer to the second part of the question is in the affirmative. With regard to the third part of the question these men will transfer to the Royal Air Force for the purpose of serving in that Force, and the question of re-entry in the Royal Navy will not arise.

Does my hon. and gallant Friend mean that all these apprentices will be accepted into the Air Force?

I hope so, but I am not in a position to give quite a definite answer.

Commissioned Wardmasters


asked the Financial Secretary to the Admiralty whether the Admiralty will now consider the appointment of commissioned ward-masters as secretaries to the surgeon rear-admirals at Plymouth and Portsmouth, respectively, in view of the fact that this would mean economy and would facilitate promotion from the sick-berth staff to warrant rank?

I will look into the question raised and let my Noble Friend know the result, but I may say at once that the new arrangements suggested would be considerably more expensive than the arrangements now in force.