§ MR. EASTWICK
said, he would beg to ask the First Lord of the Admiralty, Whether, as it was the former rule of the service that a Post Captain went on to be Rear-Admiral by seniority without any service at sea being required, it is the intention that under Clause 6, Section 2, of the new Retirement scheme, Post Captains will, on retirement, be allowed, under similar circumstances, to rise to the said rank of Bear-Admiral; also, as in Clause 7, Section 8, service is reckoned only from the rank of Acting Sub-Lieutenant, on what principle service as a midshipman, which extends over six years, is ignored, while for seamen service is reckoned from the age of eighteen, and in the Army from the rank of Cornet and Ensign; and, also with reference to the periods of service below or over the limit entitling to retired pay, and according to which periods additions or deductions of £10 and upwards are made to the retired pay, whether a period of six months would not be more equitably assigned than that of a full year as the time according to which the said additions or deductions should be made, inasmuch as cases will arise, as Clause 1, Section 8, at present stands, in which officers will lose nearly two years' service, when the full year of over service and under service have both been nearly reached?
§ MR. CHILDERS
In reply, Sir, to the first Question of the hon. Member, I have to say that he does not appear to be aware that under the present system 68 captains, although never employed, rise to be full admirals on the retired list. Under the new Order in Council they will only be entitled to be retired rear-admirals if they have served their time; all present captains having the option of remaining under the present system. I consider this to be one of the best features of the new regulations, and I certainly do not propose to alter it. In reply to the second Question, I have to say that the new regulations extend the service which counts for retirement. At present the first two years of a sub-lieutenant's time do not count. A lad may be a midshipman at fourteen, and as he may be a sub-lieutenant at nineteen, and in future, in certain cases, at eighteen, I see no reason for any further extension. Time counts in the other branches from even later age. The last Question I fear I do not understand. But no deduction is to be made from the rate of retired pay unless the service is deficient by a full year, so that there is no break of two years such as the Question implies. I see no reason for introducing for the first time half-year calculations.