§ COLONEL SIR HOWARD VINCENT (Sheffield, Central)
I beg to ask the Under Secretary of State for War whether, having regard to the fact that, under the proposals of Her Majesty's Government, two Army Corps, which will include the bulk of the regular Cavalry regiments, Artillery batteries, and Infantry battalions at home, will be immediately available for foreign service, and that it is proposed to make a considerable part of the Militia also available for foreign service in time of war, and that, consequently, the defence of the United Kingdom will be left mainly to the Volunteers; if it is intended to make serious effort to organise this force for rapid mobilisation in more workable divisions and brigades than at present exist, with a proper complement of Artillery, Guns, Cavalry, and Auxiliary services, and at the same time provide for the efficient command of all units, the amalgamation of weak or under-officered regiments, and for the due training of all arms by the provision of adequate camp accommodation, drill grounds, and rifle ranges.
THE UNDER SECRETARY OF STATE FOR WAR (Mr. W. ST. JOHN BRODRICK,) Surrey, Guildford
It would be impossible for me to answer my hon. and gallant Friend's queries within the limits of a reply to a Question. The organisation of the Volunteers for home defence has been steadily progressing, to enable it to fulfil all the duties that may devolve upon it in the case of an apprehended invasion of the country; and our efforts in this direction will not be relaxed.
§ COLONEL SIR HOWARD VINCENT
What I want to know is, whether this matter, the organisation of the Volunteer forces, has been seriously taken in hand?
§ MR. BRODRICK
It certainly has been seriously considered. The Volunteers have been brigaded with a view to their employment, and the position the Volunteers will hold in case of invasion has been constantly stated. When my hon. 825 Friend raises other important questions in his Question he is assuming a little unduly that no attention has been paid to the subject.