Rowing Money, Sleeping Money, and Allowance of Provisions to Shipwrights

Repair of Defects to HM ships

Admiralty Circular

The following is the substance of an order recently promulgated, and having in view of the diminution of expense in repairs, &c. (No. 88) dated 31 Jan 1833, and addressed to all Captains, Commanders, Commanding Officers of HM Ships and Vessels :-

The rowing money, the sleeping money, and the allowance of provisions to the shipwrights who are constantly sent off from the Dock-yards to Spithead and Plymouth Sound, and frequently to much shorter distances from the other yards, to examine and make good the defects of HM ships arriving at these ports, amount, in the course of the year, to so heavy an expense, that, with a due regard to the interests of the public, the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty consider it most desirable the practice should be discontinued ; which, they are of opinion, may be done, not only without prejudice but with advantage to HM service, in more respects than the saving of expense.

To accomplish this desirable end, their Lordships direct that when the defects of a ship, on her arrival in port, are large, and really require the assistance of the Dockyard, she shall be towed into harbour by a steam tug vessel, to be appropriated to the services of the port ; where, on examination, she will either be paid off or have her defects made good in the basins or at the jetties ; and thus will the expense of rowing and sleeping money, and provisions, be saved to the public.

But when are not so serious a nature as to require her going into harbour, the Captain or Commander is to transmit a list of such defects as there may be to the Admiral or other officer commanding the port ONLY, and not to the Dockyard, with a certificate signed by himself, the Commander, the First Lieutenant, and the Carpenter, stating whether such defects can or cannot be made good by the ship’s artificers.

When it is considered that the whole squadron on the South America station, most of which are required to pass round Cape Horn in the course of their three years’ continuance on that station, have no Dockyard to resort to, but make good their defects by their own crews, or with the assistance of the squadron ; and on the contrary, when it is notorious that scarcely a single ship, whether new, or newly fitted at any of the eastern yards, on her arrival at Portsmouth or Plymouth, does not require some defects to be made good at one or other of the Dockyards at these ports, and sometimes at both : their Lordships deem it high time to put an end to these expensive and, in their opinion, unnecessary proceedings.

The attention of the respective Captains and commanding officers of HM ships and vessels is, therefore, particularly called to these points of their duty ; and the instructions contained in the said Circular, No. 88, are, on all occasions, to be strictly enforced."

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