COLONEL LONG (Worcestershire, Evesham)
I beg to ask the Under Secretary of State for War whether, according to the establishment, in the cavalry the proportion of first lieutenants to second lieutenants is eight to six, and in the infantry eight to four at home, equal in the colonies, and nine to eight in India, while in the artillery it is now about 159 to 362 in the mounted artillery, and 98 to 348 in the garrison artillery; and if so, whether steps can be taken to remedy the wholesale supersession of artillery subalterns by those in other branches of the service; and whether the Secretary of State for War will consider, in view of the supersession which has taken place, the substitution of a fixed establishment of first lieutenants in the artillery, as was formerly the case as to increased pay, for the present system of three years service in the junior rank.
§ *MR. WYNDHAM
The figures are approximately correct. As I have previously informed the House the promotion of artillery second lieutenants is receiving consideration in the War Office. But the question is one of considerable difficulty. It is not possible to secure uniformity of promotion in the different branches of the service; but it is recognised that such inequality as exists at present ought to be remedied if possible.