HC Deb 11 February 1898 vol 53 c354

I beg to ask the Under Secretary of State for War whether his attention has been called to section 83 of the Army Act of 1881, 44 and 45 Vic. c. 58, in which it is enacted that soldiers of the regular forces, whether enlisted for general service or not, when once appointed to a Corps, shall serve in that Corps for the period of his Army Service, or during the period of such re-engagement as is in the Act mentioned, unless within three months after the date of his attestation he is transferred to any Corps of the regular force of the same arm or rank of the Service by order of the competent military authority; whether the arrangement sanctioned in 1893, and recently enforced, by which men enlisting in the Cavalry are made liable to be transferred without their own consent from one regiment to another, is in conformity with the above enactment; whether the opinion of officers commanding Cavalry regiments, as to the advantage and popularity of the new Regulation has been obtained: and whether their opinion is favourable to it, or the reverse?


The Army Act authorises the transfer of soldiers within a Corps; and, under the Royal Warrant of the 28th February, 1893, the Cavalry is divided into four Corps. Men enlisted since that date for one of the four Cavalry Corps are, therefore, liable to be transferred to any regiment of that Corps. The opinion of officers commanding Cavalry regiments was not taken when the grouping was determined on. It is the desire of the Secretary of State and his military advisers that the liability for general service should be enforced with all possible regard for regimental feeling, and the subject is now under consideration.