Naval Aircraft Carriers.

Oral Answers to Questions — Ireland. – in the House of Commons on 6th July 1922.

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Photo of Viscount  Curzon Viscount Curzon , Battersea South

60.

asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Admiralty how many aircraft carriers are now in commission and in reserve; how many ships are fitted for carrying aircraft; and whether enough machines, pilots, and observers are kept either on board or at their attached aerodromes to provide for the full establishment of aircraft laid down for these ships?

Photo of Lieut-Colonel Leo Amery Lieut-Colonel Leo Amery , Birmingham Sparkbrook

The ships in commission are "Argus" and "Pegasus"; the ships under construction or reconstruction are "Hermes," "Eagle" and "Furious";"Ark Royal" is in reserve. Seventeen battleships, four battle cruisers, and seven light cruisers are fitted with flying platforms. As regards the number of machines, I would refer my Noble and gallant Friend to the reply given on the 12th April to the hon. and gallant Member for Hertford (Rear-Admiral Sueter). The number of pilots and observers is adequate for the aircraft actually allocated to the Navy.

Photo of Viscount  Curzon Viscount Curzon , Battersea South

Is the answer to the second part of my question in the affirmative, or in the negative?

Photo of Lieut-Colonel Leo Amery Lieut-Colonel Leo Amery , Birmingham Sparkbrook

I referred my Noble and gallant Friend to an answer in which I said that the number we thought desirable had been reduced, from considerations of economy.

Photo of Viscount  Curzon Viscount Curzon , Battersea South

Are we to understand that the Navy has not got the number of machines that it really requires: and, further, are the Admiralty satisfied with the position? May I have an answer?

Photo of Mr John Whitley Mr John Whitley , Halifax

It was contained in the last answer.

Photo of Viscount  Curzon Viscount Curzon , Battersea South

On a point of Order. I asked the right hon. Gentleman whether the Admiralty are satisfied with the position. That was not contained in the answer.