Royton (Warship Adoption)

Oral Answers to Questions — Royal Navy – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 11th October 1944.

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Photo of Sir Harold Sutcliffe Sir Harold Sutcliffe , Royton 12:00 am, 11th October 1944

asked the First Lord of the Admiralty if his attention has been called to the financial adoption by Royton in Warships Week of the sloop "Sparrow"; whether this ship was in existence at that date or has since been constructed; and if he can make a statement on the subject.

Mr. Alexander:

When the Warship Weeks adoption scheme was introduced, in order to meet all the requests from local authorities, it was necessary to include in the scheme not only completed ships but also those under construction or in the new building programme but not yet laid down. At the time of her adoption by Royton and district H.M.S. "Sparrow" was in the third category. Since then developments in the war situation have caused changes in priority which have very much delayed the completion of H.M.S. "Sparrow," and I am afraid that it will still be some considerable time before she is ready to sail the seas. I appreciate the disappointment which this long delay has caused to the people who so generously adopted this ship, and have therefore offered them a frigate in her place which has already seen active service. I understand from a letter of 5th September from the town clerk that the council have accepted this offer. I hope that the link between this vessel and the people of Royton will be close and friendly.

Photo of Sir Harold Sutcliffe Sir Harold Sutcliffe , Royton

Is the First Lord of the Admiralty aware that, as a result of the hope expressed in a letter of July, 1942, by the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty, that a lasting association might be formed between the townspeople and the ship, school children have been writing continuously ever since and no notification whatever was given by the Admiralty for two years, until in July of this year the council made inquiries; and should not some notification have been given previously?

Mr. Alexander:

I certainly think it was unfortunate that a confidential notice was not sent earlier that the ship had not been proceeded with so rapidly.

Photo of Mr Herbert Williams Mr Herbert Williams , Croydon South

Is not the right hon. Gentleman aware that even a worse fate has befallen H.M.S. "Firework"?

Mr. Alexander:

Certainly not, Sir.