HC Deb 03 November 1884 vol 293 cc789-90

asked the Secretary of State for War, Whether his attention has been called to the case of James Henry Porter, late Army Schoolmaster in the 56th Regiment; whether it is the fact that this man served in the Army for 21 years all but 75 days, ten years of which service was in India; whether he was most favourably reported during 17 years of this service whether he was afterwards twice reported unfavourably for drinking, the latter time being placed under arrest; whether he was imprisoned for nearly five months, without being asked for a defence, or tried by Court-martial, and then dismissed from the service without total loss of pension; whether, within three months of being placed under arrest, he was recommended by his commanding officer, and awarded 6d. per day extra pay for zeal and efficiency; whether it is true that his commanding officer recommended him for a pension; and, whether he will have inquiries made into this man's grievance with the view to granting him even a modified pension?


This case has been repeatedly brought under the consideration of my Predecessor and myself. The schoolmaster referred to was, after repeated warnings, dismissed from the Army because his intemperate habits rendered him unfit for duty. It is true that his commanding officer recommended him on account of his previous good service for discharge with a modified pension. It was held, however, that his removal from the Army being rendered necessary solely on account of his misconduct, this could not be permitted, and he was, as I have stated, dismissed from the Army in 1880. Under these circumstances, I have no power to grant him a pension.