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Naval And Civil Establishments (Security)

Volume 644: debated on Wednesday 12 July 1961

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asked the Civil Lord of the Admiralty what basic differences exist in the application of security regulations to Admiralty civil establishments and naval shore establishments, respectively; and whether he is satisfied that there is no weakness in the security system resulting from such differences.

There are no basic differences in the regulations applied to naval and civil establishments respectively.

I thank the Civil Lord for that reply. I wonder if he can satisfy the House on two further points. First, is it correct that the captain in charge, Portland, before this particular incident recommended that Henry Houghton should not be employed in Her Majesty's dockyard? Secondly, in view of the serious breach of security in the Admiralty civil establishment, is it not odd that two naval officers have been named but not, as yet, any civilians?

On the first point, as my right hon. Friend the Prime Minister made clear, it is undesirable to try to put a gloss or an explanation on the summary which has already been laid before the House. On the second point, two out of the three persons named were civilians at the time. One is a civilian. One was an ex-naval officer who had been a civilian for some time before his employment. It is true that the third was a serving naval officer at that time.