§ MR. DILLON
I beg to ask the Secretary of State for War whether he will inquire by telegram from Lord Kitchener as to the truth of the statement that on the night after the battle of Vlakfontein the British troops retired, leaving their hospital and all their wounded in the hands of the Boers.
§ MR. BRODRICK
In reply to a telegram requesting Lord Kitchener to forward a full report of this action, and referring to the statement made in the question, Lord Kitchener telegraphs as follows—Copy of General Dixon's despatch on action at Vlakfontein has been forwarded to the War Office. The rear guard was surprised under cover of veldt fire, and vigorously attacked. When it was reinforced from main body enemy were driven off, and our troops remained on ground. No doubt for a short time, when rear guard were being attacked and driven back on main body, wounded men were on ground occupied by enemy, but the hospital is not usually with rear guard, and I have never heard that it was in enemy's hands.