Navigation Lights, Orkney and Shetland.

Oral Answers to Questions — Mercantile Marine. – in the House of Commons on 14th July 1936.

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Photo of Major Sir Basil Neven-Spence Major Sir Basil Neven-Spence , Orkney and Shetland

asked the President of the Board of Trade whether the attention of the Commissioners of Northern Lighthouses has been drawn to the need of a minor light at Uyeasound, Shetland; and, if so, what action they propose to take?

Photo of Mr Walter Runciman Mr Walter Runciman , St Ives

I have communicated with the Commissioners of Northern Lighthouses, who state that they will be unable to take any action in the near future in regard to the establishment of a light in this vicinity.

Photo of Major Sir Basil Neven-Spence Major Sir Basil Neven-Spence , Orkney and Shetland

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that the captain of the mail and passenger steamship has made repeated requests for years of a light to help him to navigate these very dangerous waters?

Photo of Mr Walter Runciman Mr Walter Runciman , St Ives

If my hon. and gallant Friend wishes the subject to be dealt with, he could achieve his purpose more rapidly by direct. communication with the Northern Lighthouse authorities.

Photo of Major Sir Basil Neven-Spence Major Sir Basil Neven-Spence , Orkney and Shetland

asked the President of the Board of Trade (1) whether he is aware that on a recent occasion the steamship "Earl Sigurd," outward bound from Kirkwall to pick up an urgent hospital case, had to anchor for the night at the Galtness gas buoy, being unable to proceed further until daylight because of the lack of a gas buoy on Eda Groina shoal; and whether he will bring this incident to the notice of the Northern Lighthouse Commissioners;

(2) whether he is aware that the lack of a lighted buoy on Eda Groina shoal reduces the usefulness of the three lighted buoys and the fixed minor lights on the passage from Kirkwall to Westray to such an extent on dark nights that the passage can in fact only be made with safety by daylight; and whether he will bring this aspect of the question to the notice of the Northern Lighthouse Commissioners?

Photo of Mr Walter Runciman Mr Walter Runciman , St Ives

The Commissioners of Northern Lighthouses state that their attention has been called to the "Earl Sigurd" incident. They do not agree that the absence of a lighted buoy at Eda Groina reduces the usefulness of the other lights mentioned in the question. Perhaps my hon. and gallant Friend will communicate his views and the information on which they are based to the Commissioners of Northern Lighthouses, who will, I am sure, give them careful consideration.

Photo of Mr James Maxton Mr James Maxton , Glasgow Bridgeton

Why should a Member of this House go to some outside body, when the right hon. Gentleman is here to deal with these matters?

Photo of Mr Walter Runciman Mr Walter Runciman , St Ives

The reason is that the Commissioners are the administrators of this lights service, and it would save both time and trouble if they were approached directly.

Photo of Mr James Maxton Mr James Maxton , Glasgow Bridgeton

Yes, it would save time and trouble to the Minister.