HC Deb 09 April 1866 vol 182 c890

said, he would beg to ask the Secretary of State for War, Whether the system hitherto followed in promoting Assistant Surgeons to Battalion Surgeons in the Foot Guards has not been Regimental; whether there is any intention to change that system; and, if any change, is to be made, under what warrant?


said, in reply, that up to the year 1858 the system of the promotion of assistant-surgeons to surgeons in the Guards was undoubtedly a regimental system. In that year, however, a warrant was issued which conferred several pecuniary advantages upon the medical department, and that warrant also enacted that the mode of promotion as a general rule should be by seniority in the service. In 1860 a question arose as to whether the provisions of this warrant would apply to the surgeons of the household brigade of cavalry, and, after consideration, it was decided by Her Majesty on the recommendation of the Commander-in-Chief and the Secretary for War that in the household cavalry and the Guards also, in consideration of the surgeons having accepted the warrant, and being in the enjoyment of the advantages conferred upon them by it, the mode of promotion enacted; by that warrant should be carried out in both services, to the extent that the promotion from the rank of assistant-surgeons to surgeons should not go in the regiment but in the brigade. Until within a few days no case had occurred in the Brigade of Guards under the new system; the alteration, however, was not a recent one, but dated as long back as 1860.