§ House in Committee, Mr. Bouverie in the Chair.
§ (1.) 50,000l., Royal Naval Coast Volunteers.
§ MR. W. WILLIAMS
said, he would now take the opportunity, which he could not do when, on a previous occasion, the estimates were first brought in at two o'clock in the morning, to make some general observations respecting them. He begged, in the first place, to call the attention of the First Lord of the Admiralty to the number of admirals. It appeared by these votes that there were sixteen admirals on active service, only ten of whom were employed on board, the other four being what were called port admirals. Against these there were 261 admirals in a state of idleness, receiving half-pay or on the pension list. Again, take the captains; there were ninety-three captains and 127 commanders, making a total of 220 on the active list, against 464 in a state of idleness. Then again, as to lieutenants and masters, there were 519 employed, against 1,143 unemployed. Really this exhibited a monstrous state of things, and he hoped the right hon. Baronet would take the subject seriously into his consideration. Only think of 755 officers of all ranks being employed in a fleet the most powerful ever sent out by this country, and 1,868 in a state of idleness. He (Mr. Williams) must say that, since the present First Lord of the Admiralty had 1380 been in office, he believed the management of that department had been much more economical and efficient than was formerly the case; but he wished to call the attention of the right hon. Baronet to the fact that, since the termination of the last war, there had been an expenditure of 62,500,000l. upon wages, machinery, and other items in the dockyards, and he would like to know what practical advantage the country had derived in return for such vast expenditure. There had also been, within the same period, an expenditure of 10,500,000l, for the enlargement of dockyards; only one new one, that of Pembroke, having been constructed. If the right hon. Gentleman would take stock of the ships, putting a fair value on them, and making a most liberal allowance for repairs, he ventured to assert he would find at least 25,000,000l. of money that could not be accounted for—that had been squandered in extravagance, mismanagement, and inability in the dockyards. Ships had been altered, and almost made entirely new, two or three times over. He also wished to call the attention of the right hon. Baronet to the large expenditure of naval agents at different stations, for taking care of stores, ammunition, and various things. They had large establishments belonging to the Navy department, and still larger for the Ordnance and commissariat department, all at the same place. He thought a saving might be made, if the same agent conducted the three departments. He would also suggest that a savings bank should be established for the Navy.
§ SIR JAMES GRAHAM
said, he must thank the hon. Member for the support which he had given to the Government in reference to these estimates hitherto, and would gladly answer his observations, although they had no direct reference to the vote immediately before the Committee. And, first, with respect to the number of officers on half-pay, beginning, as his hon. Friend had done, with those of the highest rank. His hon. Friend must be aware that this question had been very closely examined by the Committee on the Naval Estimates, of which the noble Lord the Member for Totness (Lord Seymour) was Chairman; that the number of admirals on the active list was at that time considerably larger than at present; that, in conformity with the recommendation of that Committee, the number had been reduced to 100, at which it remained fixed; that the pro- 1381 motions were only made one by one from the list of post-captains as vacancies occurred; and that all brevets had ceased. With respect to captains and commanders, the rule which limited the promotions to one for every three vacancies, was strictly adhered to, and there was every desire upon the part of the Admiralty to reduce the number to the minimum consistent with the efficiency of the service. With respect to the lieutenants, the number on the effective list had been so much reduced, that in the armaments which were now taking place, they had really immense difficulty in getting the number they required; and he did think, that with respect to that list, some reconsideration of the rule now in force would become essential; and if brevets were to cease, as he thought they ought in reference to the higher ranks, he did think that some promotions from lieutenants to commanders would be found indispenably necessary in order to afford encouragement to this most important and hard-working class of officers. With respect to the expenditure for wages and materials in the dockyards, his hon. Friend should recollect the immense changes which had lately taken place with respect to the construction of ships; first, from sailing vessels having given way to paddle-wheel steamers, and still more recently from the introduction of the screw. It was impossible that changes so considerable could be made without expense; but considering that it was our duty at all times to maintain our position as the greatest naval nation in the world, he, for one, did not regret that we had so large a number of vessels in ordinary, because it had been shown that they could be converted into most effective screw ships at a very moderate expense. The experiment of placing the navy agency in the hands of the commissariat had been tried to a certain extent at Hong Kong, but it had been found to produce so much confusion in the accounts, and so much disadvantage to the naval service, that he had felt himself bound by a regard to the efficiency of that service to require that it should be abandoned. With respect to the encouraging of savings banks, he must inform the hon. Member that facilities for investment had been given to our seamen twenty years ago, but it had not suited their tastes to avail themselves of it, and he regretted to say, that the sums invested hitherto had been comparatively small. He admitted the great importance of the sub- 1382 ject, and his attention would continue to be, as it had been, anxiously directed to the subject. He attributed the difference between our soldiers and seamen in this respect to the difference in the mode in which they were paid. The wages of the seaman were allowed to accumulate for a long time, and he received a large sum at once when the ship was paid off at one or other of the outposts, where he was subject to immense temptations to spend it prodigally. He thought it most desirable to assimilate the two services in this respect, and he trusted his hon. Friend would give him credit for a desire to introduce the change at the earliest moment at which it could be advantageously made. He did not think the present time—when they were entering different classes of men under different circumstances, and at different rates of pay—was a favourable one to make the alteration, and he could not positively say that he would propose it during the Session. He should, however, lose no time in doing so when an opportune moment arrived; for he looked upon it as of great importance, and as likely to have a very salutary moral effect upon the character of the men.
§ CAPTAIN SCOBELL
said, on the subject of officers' ages, that you could not blame old officers for having become old. A new system was wanted, and the active list ought to be reduced by at least one-half. At present we had officers enough for the whole navy of the world, enough for the navies of two worlds in fact. He thought it very right to have such a force as the naval coast volunteers, but felt bound to call attention to an existing impropriety in the way of raising them. We wished very wisely to say nothing and to do nothing with impressment, but according to the representations of the newspapers, the officers who went along the coast making speeches to obtain volunteers, constantly told them as an inducement, that if they entered there they would be free from impressment. That was the very worst thing they could do for the general service. He wished to know why, when these volunteers were given a bounty, none was allowed to able seamen? The sailors had never been tried under that system; but he believed that, of all bodies of men, sailors were most easily accessible by ready money. They wanted it; when he was a midshipman he recollected it himself. They did not like to come and offer themselves when they were out at elbows; 1383 and such a bounty would enable them to get clothes. He believed the answer to him was, that there were plenty of men to be got without a bounty, and that, therefore, to give one would be to incur a needless expenditure. There might be plenty of men, but he doubted whether there were plenty of seamen, else why call the coast guard into service? Why rummage up old pensioners? Why these appeals to the owners of yachts? They should treat the sailor as nearly as possible as they did the soldier, and not refuse him a bounty when asking him what they never asked before—that he should give them ten years' service—place his body at their disposal—go in what ship, to what climate, and to what duty they pleased. Let this be given only to the able, trained seamen; but let it be remembered that they had grown into a less careless and a more thinking race, and that they believed themselves, in this matter, to be treated with injustice.
§ SIR JAMES GRAHAM
said, that without impugning the excellence of the hon. and gallant Officer's motives in these suggestions as to bounty, he still thought that if any course could be taken calculated to thwart the operations of the executive Government at the present time, it was this constant recurrence to the question of bounty. As matters stood at present he had not the least intention of offering a bounty, and thereby entailing—as thereby he should entail—upon the country an immediate expenditure of 200,000l. Why was that sum to be expended unless there was an absolute necessity for it? Such necessity, as far as he could see, had no existence, and without it that expense could not, of course, be justified. Greatly to the credit of our seamen he said it, that, although some few months ago there was difficulty in getting men for the fleet, just in proportion as danger had been increasing, the willingness of the sailor to enter without bounty had increased also; and since the certainty of war had become clear, the whole population of the country, more especially the seafaring population, had come forward with a spirit which it was impossible for hon. Members of that House too much to admire. There was, then, no need of a bounty, especially since the addition of pay last year in consideration of enlisting for long service, the care now taken to prevent arbitrary punishments, and the mitigation of secondary punishments in the Navy were better known and more fully appreciated. The bounty offered 1384 to the naval coast volunteers was offered them because they were on the same footing as the militia; the Army and Navy were not on the same; and as to the bounty given to the soldier, none was offered which was not consumed at once for necessaries on first joining his regiment. So, in the Marines, the bounty was consumed in furnishing necessaries. If the hon. and gallant Member was not desirous of putting difficulties in the way of the Government, and of incurring needless expense for the country, he would now let this subject drop.
§ SIR GEORGE TYLER
said, he thought it would be extremely useful to the Committee if some information could be given them as to how the force of naval coast volunteers had been raised, and whether the number of men who had come forward—many of whom could not be altogether seamen—was equal to that for which the vote had been taken last year. When the subject was before the House last year he took an occasion to express an opinion, which was met with ridicule by an hon. and gallant Admiral as rather an antiquated notion. He still believed that we must depend on the mercantile marine for the manning of the Navy, and experience had since shown that he was correct in that belief. It was most desirable that there should be always at hand a sufficient supply of sailors for continuously manning our fleet when required. The plan proposed, in a pamphlet written by Admiral Bowles, was, that there should be a naval militia, independent of the coast volunteers, formed along the coast, and within five miles of it; and also, that there should be a quota establishment for each great seaport town in England. This force the author proposed to divide into classes; and he suggested that the first class, composed of men of from eighteen to thirty years of age, should be made available for the service of the Royal Navy for a certain fixed period, liable to be called out like the militia, and with equal bounties and advantages. The second class would consist of men between thirty and forty years of age, liable to limited service in the United Kingdom; and in this way a force would be established which would be at all times available. He hoped the right hon. Gentleman would give to the plan of the gallant officer that consideration which he (Sir G. Tyler) thought it deserved.
said, he must disclaim any intention of ever ridiculing what fell from the hon. and gallant Mem- 1385 ber who had just spoke. In stating that the Navy brought up men for her own service, and did not get them from the merchant service, he had stated what was the fact; and he might mention that it was illustrated in the case of a ship at Devonport the other day, into the circumstances of which he had inquired. The character of all the men was good; and when he came to analyse that ship's company, he found that the whole of the men, with one or two exceptions among the petty officers, were brought up in the flag-ship at Devonport. His intention was not to disparage the merchant service; but he repeated what he had said, that we were raising the very best men for our own ships and our own service. We had, however, in very many instances, received from the merchant service ordinary men, who no doubt would, in due time, make very good seamen. The coast guards were a very fine body of men, and captains spoke of them in terms of the highest praise. The enrolment of coast volunteers had only been going on for three weeks, and it was almost impossible at this early stage to say how it would proceed. However, already the force amounted, in these three weeks, to about 1,000 men.
§ CAPTAIN SCOBELL
said, he wished briefly to recur to the subject of the bounty. The First Lord of the Admiralty had told them that what he (Capt. Scobell) was saying would prevent the manning of the Navy. His argument was, that it assisted the manning of the Navy. How could a bounty retard the manning of the Navy? He had been misunderstood if it was supposed that be would give it to a single man who did not enter for twenty years; and this must be considered as against the right hon. Baronet's estimate of 200,000l. expense, arising from the adoption of this course. He would exclude ordinary seamen and landsmen altogether; but he wanted to see the better class of seamen brought forward by the bounty. His sole object was to assist in the manning of the Navy with proper men.
§ MR. W. WILLIAMS
said, he roust beg to express his gratification at the First Lord of the Admiralty's statement of the effects of the diminution of corporal punishment. He hoped the right hon. Baronet would keep his attention on that point; for he was convinced that wherever you found an officer inflicting numerous punishments on board his ship, there you found an officer not fit for command.
§ Vote agreed to.1386
§ (2.) 51,722l, Scientific Department.
said, he wished to call attention to the very long interval that occurred between the completion of surveys on our coasts and the publication of the charts. He hoped there was some probability of their soon getting the very great arrear of charts now due.
§ SIR JAMES GRAHAM
said, he must acknowledge that the more speedy publication of the result of the surveys was a matter of great importance. He had given his attention to the reorganisation of the hydrographical department, and an officer well known for his scientific acquirements, Captain Washington, had been appointed as assistant to Admiral Beaufort. The attention of these officers had been directed to the urgent necessity of a more speedy publication of the surveys which had been made, as charts became comparatively useless if their publication was long delayed, and he believed the result of their joint efforts would be that the wishes of his hon. Friend would, before long, be accomplished.
§ Vote agreed to; as were the following four Votes:—
- (3.) 131,451l., Establishments at Home.
- (4.) 22,297l., Establishments Abroad.
- (5.) 883,648l., Artificers at Home.
- (6.) 37,259l., Artificers Abroad.
- (7.) 1,142,732l., Naval Stores.
§ MR. W. WILLIAMS
said, he must own that, comparing the Votes of this and the previous year with those taken for the last twenty-five or thirty years, and, looking at the efficient Navy which we now possessed under the auspices of the right hon. Gentleman the First Lord of the Admiralty, there was touch food for congratulation as to the small amount required to prepare such an efficient fleet as contrasted with years when there was scarcely any fleet at all for the defence of the country.
said, while acknowledging the admirable state of efficiency into which the fleet had been brought, there was one arm in which he feared it was deficient; he alluded to ships fitted for carrying mortars. When he was at the Admiralty, a second-class steam-sloop was fitted for that purpose, and the experiment was looked upon as a successful one.
said, that all our large ships at present threw shells from their 68-pounders, almost in the same way as mortars, and were capable of bursting their shells at the same distance as mortars.
§ CAPTAIN SCOBELL
said, he hoped the improvement of the small arms would not be lost sight of. Some of the marines, he apprehended, were now practised in the use of the Minié rifle. He wished to ask whether the Board of Admiralty had finally made up their minds as to the propriety of employing iron as a material for ships of war? He wished also to put a question to the right hon. Gentleman with regard to the reward given to the inventor of the screw-propeller. He understood there were parties who were said to have a reasonable claim to be considered in the matter, and who urged that the screw-propeller invented by them was the very one which the Royal Navy now used, and for which the premium had been awarded.
§ SIR JAMES GRAHAM
said, he had great pleasure in informing the hon. and gallant Member that the muskets supplied on board Her Majesty's ships were of the most improved description. With regard to the second question which had been put to him, be had to state that the result of the inquiries which had been made afforded proof that iron was not a material well adapted for the construction of ships of war. With regard to the subject of the inventor of the screw-propeller referred to by the hon. and gallant Gentleman, the circumstances of the case were, that a sum of 10,000l. had been paid to persons who claimed to be the inventors of the screw-propeller in use in Her Majesty's ships, but, at the same time, a bond of indemnity had been required, in the event of any person hereafter coming forward and proving himself to have been the original inventor, and, if Captain Carpenter were, in fact, the original inventor, he could institute a legal claim.
SIR FRANCIS BARING
said, when he was at the Admiralty the patentees of different inventions claimed from the Admiralty payment for the use of their screw-propellers. Whilst the question was in the Court of Chancery, the Admiralty declined making any payments. At last the parties made an arrangement, vesting the claims in one company, and then a demand was made on the Admiralty for the sum due, which was a very considerable sum. When the matter came before him, he said he should like to have it settled not only for the past, but also for the future. The parties took a liberal view of the subject, and he felt satisfied that, if 1388 the Admiralty had been called upon to pay for each particular invention, the amount would have been much larger than that paid, namely, 10,000l. A guarantee was taken from the parties holding the Government harmless for the future.
§ MR. FITZSTEPHEN FRENCH
said, he felt bound to state that, in his opinion, the credit of the application of the screw-propeller to ships was due to Captain Evans. That officer had been sent to inspect the Archimedes, which, he believed, was one of the first ships which was fitted with a screw-propeller, and he had been present at the trial which took place, and the inventor was at that time utterly ignorant of the power which the screw gave over the helm, and every one of the statements which Captain Evans made on that occasion had since been justified by the result. When credit was claimed by different persons for the application of the screw-propeller, he thought that some credit was due to an officer who had so materially facilitated its adaptation.
§ CAPTAIN SCOBELL
said, he believed the money had been paid to a company, and by that company to a Mr. Lowe. In 1852, Mr. Lowe petitioned for an extension of his patent, and the petition was heard by the Judicial Committee of Privy Council, who were unanimously of opinion that Mr. Lowe was not the inventor or patentee of the screw-propeller used in Her Majesty's service, and, therefore, refused to extend his patent. Captain Carpenter had spent 3,000l. in carrying out his plans, and it would be very hard for him to have to fight the matter in a court of law against a large company. The screw in the Agamemnon, and some other ships, was as nearly as possible the screw of Captain Carpenter, and was not in the shape of Mr. Lowe's screw.
SIR FRANCIS BARING
said, the decision that Mr. Lowe had no claim for the extension of his patent was no proof that the Admiralty were not bound to pay whilst that patent was in operation. It was a combination of a great number of patents, and until Captain Carpenter could establish a legal right he could have no claim.
said, that the Board of Admiralty which followed that of which the right hon. Baronet was the head took the same view of the subject, and carried it out.
§ ADMIRAL WALCOTT
said, that Captain Carpenter had devoted the entire of his private fortune to the advantage of his 1389 profession, and was unable to take proceedings in a court of law.
§ Vote agreed to; as were also the following three Votes:—
- (8.) 372,642l., New Works.
- (9.) 32,000l., Medicines and Medical Stores.
- (10.) 54,653l., Miscellaneous Services.
- (11.) 657,575l., Half-Pay.
§ ADMIRAL WALCOTT
thought that, accustomed as we had been to refer the high position which England held among nations to the superiority of her naval power, he could not do otherwise than concur in any measure which should make a more adequate provision for manning the Navy. For of what possible use or avail could it be to boast of a splendid navy of ships, unless manned with the sinews and nerves to render them efficient? But it was necessary plainly to tell the man-of-war's man to what he might look forward—to satisfy him of the certainty of that provision which was proposed for his welfare, present and future. The officers should possess the perfect conviction that no disposal of patronage, for ends private or political, would mar their prospect of the reward due to merit. Then this country would reap the full benefit of such a generous and fostering care of a noble profession. He agreed wholly in opinion with the hon. and gallant Member for Bath (Capt. Scobell), that nothing could be more unwise than to encumber a ship with any large proportion of landsmen. Very few, indeed, but ordinary seamen ought to be taken on board. Lads of from fourteen to eighteen years of age were the material from which blue jackets must be made. In the Navy yearly from 3,000 to 4,000 such ought to be entered, in order to supply regular men-of-war's men. He was gratified by the testimony borne by the right hon. Baronet the First Lord of the Admiralty to the services of his predecessors at that board. To the Duke of Northumberland the service was indebted for the Committee on Manning the Navy, of such vast importance in its results. He believed that no man ever entered upon that office with more single-minded purpose, or more earnest desire to conduce by every possible exertion to its efficiency; and, as regarded its patronage, to make merit the sole criterion of advancement. Allusion had been made to the crowded state of the lists. It ought and must be remembered that during the last war we had at one time no 1390 less than 1,000 pendants flying, and to officer those ships was a matter of the first necessity. The officers then employed served their country with fidelity, and to its utmost advantage, and they ought not to be dealt with in speeches of disparagement. Many in peace time earnestly and perseveringly, advanced their claims to continued service—many were still most desirous of employment, and he was one of those humble individuals, and in a short time hundreds of these men would no longer need the reward of good and gallant service. But he would remind the House that the first evidence and sign of a declining nation was ingratitude displayed towards those who had stood by their country, giving her strength and life in that hour in which she most needed them. The country was entering upon another war; and she would require able heads and youthful spirit and vigour, and they ought to be cheered onwards by the bright hope that the country would not be disregardful of their claims upon her consideration. Their ardour should not be damped by indifference shown to those who preceded them in a career no less noble or momentous to the interests of their country.
§ CAPTAIN SCOBELL
said, there was an Order in Council relating to the dockyard which provided that promotions should go by merit, and on public grounds, and that every application out of the authorised course would not only be discountenanced, but would tend to check the future advancement of the parties. Let the Admiralty apply that regulation to the Navy, and they would soon make a wonderful change in its efficiency. He was afraid that, when a few persons were employed, they were selected not from public merit only; and he believed that one-half the lieutenants never got beyond that rank.
§ MR. W. WILLIAMS
said, that as the hon. and gallant Member for Christchurch (Admiral Walcott) had observed that officers of merit in the sea service had been neglected, he could not help contrasting the manner in which naval officers were treated with the conduct pursued towards officers in the Army, in reference to good-service pensions. He perceived by the estimates that one of the persons receiving a good-service pension in the Navy was Commodore Michael Seymour. This gentlemen entered the service on the 5th of November, 1813, and doubtless must then have been very young. In 1391 March, 1814, only four months afterwards, he was present, while serving in the Hannibal, at the capture of the French frigate La Sultane, and that was the only service he had rendered for his good-service pension. It was true that he had held the appointment of Commodore Superintendent of Devonport Dockyard since September, 1851, and had been actively employed afloat as a commissioned officer about eighteen years; but he had been very fortunate in obtaining those two employments, and many an officer would have been glad to have the appointments. The grant of a good-service pension for the single service he had mentioned exhibited a liberality of which the hon. and gallant Admiral had no right to complain, especially when many men in the Army who had served in the Peninsula and at Waterloo were not so well rewarded; he therefore thought that there was no ground for complaint.
§ SIR JAMES GRAHAM
said, the hon. Gentleman was rather unfortunate in the instance he had adduced of ill bestowed reward. Commodore Seymour's services were set forth in the paper before the House, and as he had had an interview that very day with the gallant commodore, he would tell the House what the nature of that interview was. It became the duty of the Admiralty to select a captain of the fleet for the force to be commanded by Sir Charles Napier, and he accordingly consulted Sir Charles Napier as to the other who, on the whole, would be most efficient for that post. After conferring together and looking at the list of officers, they both came to the conclusion that, if Commodore Seymour could be induced to accept the appointment, he would be the most efficient person. That gallant officer was at the moment Superintendent of Devonport Dockyard, and was also, on account of personal and professional services—without regard to the character of his gallant father, who had been one of the most distinguished officers in the Navy—in the receipt of a good-service pension. The moment Commodore Seymour was told it would be for the good of the service for him to leave the dockyard at Devonport and go on board the Duke of Wellington as captain of the fleet under Sir Charles Napier, he said, "I am ready to go at eight-and-forty hours' notice. I was treated generously in the profession to which my heart is devoted. I am ready to go at once, and to resign my civil appointment." He did not think it right to 1392 take Commodore Seymour at his word, but said he thought it important that he should go on board the Duke of Wellington for that special service, and that arrangements should be made to keep the appointment open until that special service should be performed. On this understanding he had obtained the hearty good-will, without any considerations of a private nature, of an officer whose services he was quite certain would not disappoint the expectations of Sir Charles Napier, or of the public, in the important position to which he had been appointed.
§ MR. W. WILLIAMS
said, he had meant to cast no reflection on the gallant officer, but he thought that many a lieutenant who had fought and had been wounded in some of the great battles of Nelson, and bad nothing but their miserable half-pay to depend on, might consider themselves hardly treated when they compared the reward of their services with that given to a gentleman whose good service was confined to the first four months after his joining the Navy.
§ Vote agreed to; as were also the following two Votes:—
- (12.) 476,659l., Military Pensions and Allowances.
- (13.) 148,798l., Civil Pensions and Allowances.
- (14.) 225,050l., Freight, &c. (Army and Ordnance Departments).
§ MR. W. WILLIAMS
said, he considered that he had reason to complain that on a late occasion a merchant steamer was employed for the conveyance of troops from Plymouth to Dublin, though two war steamers were lying at anchor in the harbour useless. The effect of this arrangement was not only great expense, but it was attended with much inconvenience to the men, who were kept on deck during the greater part of the time in rainy weather.
§ SIR JAMES GRAHAM
said, though the hon. Member seemed disposed to quarrel with the largeness of this Vote, he was afraid he would be compelled to call the attention of the House to it again before the close of the Session, as it was altogether inadequate to meet the large expenditure at present incurred by the removal of troops. [Mr. WILLIAMS: Oh, yes; I don't mean that.] The hon. Member asked why the troops were not removed in men-of-war. The reason was very simple, that whatever might be the want of accommodation for troops in merchant 1393 steamers, the inconvenience in war steamers was tenfold. With respect to this particular Vote, he might state that measures had been taken within the last fortnight for the removal of 10,000 men to the Mediterranean, and within the next fortnight arrangements would be made for doubling that number—exertions which he trusted would not be thrown away upon other Powers. He had now only to thank both sides of the House for the generous support they had given him in voting these estimates.
§ CAPTAIN SCOBELL
said, there were three Russian men-of-war in the Austrian ports in the Mediterranean. Now, the Russians who had charge of these vessels of course saw our newspapers, and they thereby could be aware of the voyage outwards of our ships without guns. Had the Government taken any steps to prevent the possibility of Russian war-steamers injuring English vessels conveying troops to the Mediterranean? There appeared to be great impatience manifested with respect to the remarks which he had thought it his duty to make, from time to time, on these estimates, but he must say that the 6,500,000l. of money which had been agreed to as supplies for the Navy had been voted away with steam-like rapidity.
§ SIR JAMES GRAHAM
said, it would not be necessary to escort any of our ships engaged in conveying troops to the Mediterranean. It was very true that there were three Russian war-steamers at Trieste, but he had great pleasure in stating that there were three English men-of-war in that neighbourhood; and if they were not a sufficient match for the Russian war-steamers, there were two powerful French men-of-war to help the English. The three Russian men-of-war were in the outer harbour at Trieste at first, but they were now hauled into the inner harbour, near the mole. Whilst they remained in that position, it would be impossible for the English men-of-war to get at them.
§ Vote agreed to.