HC Deb 18 May 1886 vol 305 cc1286-7

asked the honourable Member for North West Staffordshire, If he will take into favourable consideration the extension to the Engineers now employed in the Ordnance Survey at Southampton the same privileges of full-pay leave (according to length of service) which are enjoyed by civilians?

MR. LEVESON GOWER (A LORD of the TREASURY) (Stafford, N. W.)

The First Commissioner (Lord Henry Lennox), in March, 1874, decided that the military employés in the Survey Department of this Office were to be placed upon the same footing as regards holidays as the civil assistants, and the Director of the Survey (Sir Henry James) thereupon gave directions that the military employés were to receive working pay for Good Friday, Queen's Birthday, Coronation Day, and Christmas Day in future. At present, therefore, the Royal Engineers receive working pay for general holidays, but are not allowed any period of annual leave with working pay. It is, however, to be remarked, with reference to a comparison of the relative positions of the Royal Engineers and civilians employed on the Survey, that whereas the civilian would draw no pay for any period of leave exceeding the regulated period he was entitled to—the maximum allowed being three weeks—the Royal Engineer may obtain a furlough for a much longer time without losing his regimental pay, and he is paid his military pay for seven days in the week, while the civilian receives pay for only six days. In the circumstances, the First Commissioner does not propose to make any change in the existing system.