10 MARCH 1906, Page 3

Lord Cawdor vigorously defended the system of interchange- able officers,

and implied that its opponents were more noisy than numerous. It was, he said, a strange thing that those who had absolute control of the propelling power of the ship should be debarred from rising to the highest ranks of the Service.— He omitted to explain, however, that under the system now adopted the entire class from which the engineer officers were recruited until three years ago is, by the application of a money test, ruled out of the commissioned ranks of the Navy altogether.—Lord Tweedmouth, replying for the Government, said that he thought there was not enough evidence to warrant. their.stopping the experiment. They ought, he held, to go on with it, and see what kind of officer would be produced in seven or eight years, and then judge by the result of the experiment. He further stated his readiness to lay the Report referred to by Lord Goschen on the table of the House.