§ MR. HOWARD VINCENT (Sheffield, Central)
asked the Secretary of State for War, What proportion of the effective strength of the Infantry of the Line, and of the Infantry Militia, were put last year through a course of musketry, and what proportion of such number did not succeed in making sufficient points to get out of the third class?
§ THE SECRETARY OF STATE (Mr. E. STANHOPE) (Lincolnshire, Horncastle)
The proportion of the effective strength of the Infantry of the Line that was put through a course of musketry was—trained soldiers, 89 per cent; recruits, 64 per cent. In the Militia the proportion of men trained was 87 per cent of these battalions and half-battalions which were able to go through a course of musketry. Of the trained soldiers of the Infantry, 46 per cent failed to obtain sufficient points to pass out of the third class; and of the recruits, 23.5 per cent. Of the Militia, 38 per cent failed to pass out of the third class. These numbers are based upon the musketry practice of the Army for the year ending March 31, 1886, and of the Militia for the year 1886. As I presume that the object of my hon. Friend is to make a comparison between the shooting of the Army and Militia and of the Volunteers, I should like to say that the conditions are wholly different. In the case of the Army, it is necessary to get 110 points in 80 rounds to got into the second class, and this has been found so onerous that the qualification is to be reduced. In the case of the Militia, a man must make 39 points out of 30 rounds. In the case of the Volunteers, on the other hand, all that is necessary to get out of the third class is to make 45 points out of a maximum of 60 shots; and the recruit will 19 only have to hit the target 12 times in all.