HC Deb 07 July 1879 vol 247 cc1724-5

asked, Whether the Secretary of State for War was aware that in flogging a soldier in the Army half the cuts were constantly given with the right hand, and that then a left-handed man was put on to complete the number, thus giving the man double the pain and double the punishment?


I cannot say that such a thing has never occurred; but I am certain it is not the practice.


Sir, I beg to give Notice that to-morrow I shall ask the Secretary of State for the Colonies, Whether his attention has been called to an extract from a letter which appeared in the " Darlington and Richmond Herald " of Saturday last, from Private Frank Carroll, son of Mr. F. Carroll, of Bishop's Wearmouth, in sending home an account of the relief of Ekowe, in which he took part, and in which he says— You must not say a word up here or you will get flogged. There are two or three floggings every morning before breakfast. Private Carroll adds to this interesting details of the pleasures of soldiering in South Africa, and somewhat unnecessarily advises—" Tell all at home to go to prison rather than become soldiers. It is an awful life; " and, if so, whether the right hon. Gentleman will inquire into facts, or say whether any report of these floggings has been made to the War Office?


Sir, I beg to give Notice that to-morrow, after the asking of the Question of which Notice has just been given by the hon. Member for Dundalk, I will ask the Secretary of State for War, If he will take steps to protect Private Frank Carroll from the consequences of the writing and publication of the letter referred to?


During the discussion of Clause 44 of the Army Discipline and Regulation Bill, I said I would state, on the consideration of the Schedules, the crimes for which corporal punishment should be awarded. After full consideration with my Colleagues, and with the military authorities, we have come to the conclusion that we can confine corporal punishment to offences punishable, under the provisions of the Act, with death.