asked the Civil Lord of the Admiralty, By what authority the funds of the Greenwich Hospital are used for the formation of a branch of the Naval Reserve (notably the Pensioners' Reserve), and when was that authority given; and, whether it is the case that it was then contemplated that a reserve of 5,000 men might be formed by such means; and to what extent would the formation of such a reserve affect the funds of Greenwich Hospital?
§ MR. T. BRASSEY
, in reply, said, the Pensioner Reserve Force was established in 1869, and, as an inducement to enter, pensioners who completed a period of 14 days' drill for six consecutive years were accorded the privilege of receiving a Greenwich Hospital age pension at the age of 50, or five years earlier than other pensioners. The authority for this charge on Greenwich Hospital funds was an Order in Council of the 29th of November, 1870. It was contemplated that the Naval Pensioners Reserve would number 5,000, and had this expectation been realized an ultimate charge of £19,000 would have devolved upon Greenwich Hospital funds. At present but 1,800 pensioners belong to the force, and its creation has cost Greenwich Hospital £1,300 per annum, 170 pensioners having received the age pension at the earlier date.