Page 93 - British Inquiry into Loss of RMS Titanic Day 19 - 22
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my papers, but I remember what it is. The main thing is this: The Committee was practically at the end when I was asked to join it. I was only at the last two meetings, and the majority of the points had been well considered, and it was understood that if any Act of Parliament was brought in by the Board of Trade it would not only affect a ship like the “Titanic,” but that it would go back on all the old ships afloat, and it would therefore be unfair to go in for putting too many boats when they possibly could not get room on the older ships, and on that occasion one or both of the two plans which you have there were kept by the Board of Trade; those you have there are only prints - I left them in the room; I did not take them away. 21359. Then you took these plans which you had prepared, as I understand, as early as 1909? - Yes. 21360. You took those plans with you to this meeting at the Board of Trade in 1911? - I did. The Attorney-General: Your Lordship did not say by whom it is signed. 21361. (The Commissioner.) It is signed R. W. Matthews. (To the Witness.) Now, did you take those plans with you in 1911? - Yes. 21362. You had resigned your position with Harland and Wolff in 1910? - I had. 21363. So that it stands in this way. You made the plans in 1909; you left Harland and Wolff in 1910; you went to the Board of Trade in 1911 and took these plans with you? - I did. 21364. (Mr. Scanlan.) Of course, minutes are kept by the Board of Trade of all those Advisory Committee Meetings? - I really do not know what they do. Mr. Scanlan: I presume, my Lord it would be possible for us to get those minutes from the Board of Trade witnesses. The Commissioner: I should think so; we ought to see them. The Attorney-General: Certainly, my Lord. It is the first we have heard of it, but, of course, enquiry is being made about it. The Commissioner: They shall be procured, Mr. Scanlan. 21365. (Mr. Scanlan - To the Witness.) Now, I want to make this clear. At the time of submitting your plans to the White Star Line Directors Mr. Ismay was present? - Yes. 21366. And I suppose we may take it from you that the object of submitting the plans was to give the White Star people an opportunity of deciding for themselves whether those plans suited them? - Certainly. 21367. And with reference to the boats, giving them an opportunity of seeing whether they would have 20 boats or 64 boats which you could show them could be provided? - Yes. 21368. (The Commissioner.) You say yes, but I am by no means satisfied? - I shall be pleased to answer anything. 21369. I do not complain about the questions, but they are put in a very leading form, and you say “Yes,” but I am by no means sure that these plans were not submitted for the mere purpose of showing to the White Star Line that in case the Board of Trade made the requirements there was a scheme ready by which they could be complied with. Do you see the difference? - I see what you are at. Mr. Scanlan: I have not got the reference at present, but I think it will be found in the evidence of Mr. Sanderson that he had discussed, at all events, in a general way with the builders. The Commissioner: You are quite right. Mr. Scanlan: Because I put it to him, my Lord. The Commissioner: You are right, I remember it. 21370. (Mr. Scanlan.) I suppose on the occasion of this long discussion you had with the Directors various changes and alterations were made in the details of the decorations and otherwise? - Yes. 21371. And there was no reason why, if the White Star people wanted more boats, they could not have ordered you to go ahead and install 64? - Certainly.
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