The compensation paid for the total loss of the steam drifter "White Daisy" was £1,968. In addition the sum of £492 was placed to the owners' credit in the Fishing Vessels (Deferred Payments) Account. The motor drifters "Honeydew" and "Winsome" are in a different category and are chartered on a different form of charter. No final settlement has yet been reached about the compensation to be paid. If there should be a recourse to litigation, the amount offered by the Crown would be material to the proceedings. It would, therefore, be wrong for me now to state the offers which have been made.
Is my hon. Friend aware that the owners of "Honeydew" and "Winsome" are completely dissatisfied with any offer made so far, on the ground that there is no justification at all for discriminating between motor drifters and steam drifters? Will he undertake to look into the whole question carefully again and, in view of the fact that mainly Scottish and Shetland fishermen are concerned, will he agree to consult with my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Scotland before coming to any final decision?
I will certainly review it again. I have looked at it very carefully but I will certainly consult my right hon. Friend. In this case, however, I think the decision will have to stand, and, as it may be a matter for litigation if the owners do not accept offers made to them, I think I had better say no more.