HC Deb 17 February 1881 vol 258 c1086

asked the Secretary of State for War, Whether the following statement of the Woolwich correspondent of the "Times," in its issue of the 15th instant, with reference to reinforcements for the Transvaal, is correct:— The composition of the infantry portion of the present reinforcements is not yet decided, except that it will consist of between 700 and 800 officers, non-commissioned officers, and men, and that, in the first place, demands will he made upon the depots of the regiments now serving at the Cape, and their linked battalions. The depots at Glasgow, Northampton, Winchester, and Armagh may consequently expect an early-call, but it is considered desirable to permit volunteers to offer from all the regiments of the line to make up the requisite drafts; and, if so, whether he can shortly state any explanation for the failure of the linked battalion system to accomplish the expectation of the Localisation Committee of 1872— That the battalion at home should serve as a feeder for the supply of casualties of the twin battalion in the same district serving abroad?


Sir, in reply to the hon. and gallant Gentleman, I have to state that the paragraph which he refers to is not strictly accurate; and that if it were, it would not be a foundation for his Question. Every regiment at the Cape whose linked battalion is at home will obtain drafts from that battalion. As to the others, no volunteers from other regiments have been called for.