I beg to ask the Secretary to the Admiralty whether, in the event of the strengthening of the. Navy, it is intended to utilise the services of the chief engine-room artificers on pension, and holding Board of Trade certificates of competency, as assistant engineers in the Naval Reserve?
§ THE SECRETARY TO THE ADMIRALTY (Mr. W. E. MACARTNEY,) Antrim, S.
The Admiralty already possess the necessary powers for employing all pensioners in time of war, and it is not contemplated to make any special provision for the employment of pensioned chief engine-room artificers as assistant engineers in the Naval Reserve.
§ MR. R. G. WEBSTER (St. Pancras, E.)
I beg to ask the First Lord of the Admiralty whether, in view of the fact that the strength of the Royal Naval Reserve, exclusive of 1,561 officers, in 1895–6, was 23,740 men, he intends at an early date to make proposals to increase that reserve to a number more nearly approaching the reserve of seamen ready in case of emergencies to man the fleets of several European Powers?
§ THE FIRST LORD OF THE ADMIRALTY
Without going into the figures of the hon. Member, I may say that I cannot anticipate the, statement which it will be ray duty to make when introducing the Navy Estimates for the coming financial year.