HC Deb 03 August 1882 vol 273 c612

asked the Secretary of State for War, Whether he can state why Major-General the Hon. Percy Feilding, C.B., commanding the troops at Malta, a very distinguished officer, mentioned in Despatches, and promoted for service in the field at Alma, severely wounded at Inkerman, employed for four years as A.Q.M. General in Ireland, and, after holding regimental command for twelve years, selected to command the troops at Malta, was not sent in command of the three battalions which have recently left Malta for Egypt?


No, Sir; I feel sure that the House will support me in declining to answer any Question why a particular officer, however distinguished, is not employed on any particular service, and I much regret that the gallant Officer should set such an example. I may, however, add that he is mistaken in two respects. General Feilding does not command the force at Malta, but is second in command; and no force of three battalions has gone to Egypt from Malta as a brigade requiring the appointment of a brigadier. Three battalions have, at different times, gone to Alexandria from Malta; but they have been replaced by other battalions, and the services of the general second in command are as much required now as they were before the battalions left. The troops in Egypt, whether drawn from home or from the Mediterranean garrisons, will be commanded by the general officers who accompany them from this country.