A SUMMER meeting of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers in the Liverpool district would not be complete without a paper on ships and their machinery, and during the meeting on June 26-29, Mr. P. Austin, following in the footsteps of the late Mr. A. J. Magennis, contributed a paper on Liverpool and the Atlantic Ferry. Liverpool shipowners have played prominent parts in the long struggle for supremacy on the North Atlantic between such famous lines as the Cunard, White Star, Collins, Inman and others for a century or so. Beginning with the Black Ball line of sailing packets which connected Liverpool and New York in 1816, Mr. Austin traced the development of trans-Atlantic travel down to the present time, mentioning many once famous ships and recalling many great achievements; and in three tables he gave figures of the growth in size, power and speed of typical ships. In concluding his review, Mr. Austin asked, “Is the Liverpool airport to be one of the terminal ports of the Atlantic Ferry of the future?” While not holding that a trans-Atlantic air service is impossible, Mr. Austin has doubts as to its regularity and dependability, due to the vagaries of North Atlantic weather; also there are doubts as to whether such a service ever would be a financial success. As regards the immediate future of the ‘Atlantic ferry’, the struggle is keener than ever before and the British reply to American, French, German and Italian competition is S.S. No. 534.