My Lords, I beg to ask His Majesty's Government what proportion of the annual income of the Corporation of Trinity House is expended in pensions to decayed masters of the Mercantile Marine; whether applicants must, before any consideration is given to their applications for such pensions, be nominated by any particular person or persons and whether there are any other funds in the hands of the Government which are available for grants to decayed masters of the Mercantile Marine.
My Lords, I have to thank the noble Lord for the courtesy he has shown to the Board of Trade in delaying his Question for some days in order that we might get the necessary information. We have had considerable correspondence with other Offices, and I am now able to give the noble Lord an answer which I hope will prove satisfactory. The Board of Trade has no jurisdiction with regard to the charitable funds of the Corporation of Trinity House, which are administered under a scheme of the Charity Commissioners. They have, however, been furnished with the following information by the courtesy of the Elder Brethren:—The Corporation are trustees of certain charitable funds out of which pensions are granted to decayed master mariners and others. Some of the appointments 78 to these pensions are made by the Corporation upon the nomination of the Elder Brethren individually, in turn as vacancies occur. The accounts showing the disposal of these funds are rendered to the Charity Commissioners in the usual manner. With regard to the latter portion of the Question, pensions are granted by the Board of Trade (1) from moneys voted by Parliament to masters who contributed to the Merchant Seamen's Fund previous to August, 1851, and who continued their contribution during the period of their service at sea;, (2) from the Greenwich Sixpenny Fund to masters who served at sea for at least five years previous to January 1, 1835, and who contributed 6d. a month during that period.
§ House adjourned at twenty minutes past Five o'clock, till To-morrow, half-past Ten o'clock.