HC Deb 10 December 1908 vol 198 c727
MR. HUNT (Shropshire, Ludlow)

To ask the Secretary of State for War whether, in view of the fact that, in the opinion of the greatest military authority in Great Britain, after the arsenals, naval bases, and principal places in the United Kingdom had been garrisoned, only 40,000 partially trained troops would be left to defend the country against the acknowledged possibility of a raid or raids of 69,000 picked foreign troops he would consider the necessity of organising all the men over thirty years of age and under sixty years who had served for three years or more in any of His Majesty's regular or auxiliary forces.

(Answered by Mr. Secretary Haldane.) As I have already informed the House, it is proposed at the proper time to take up the question of forming a reserve to the Territorial Force under the ægis of the County Associations. I am not prepared to discuss in an Answer to a Question the propriety of locking up what might in certain circumstances be better utilised as a mobile force in the defence of particular places. No such estimate as is suggested in the Question is reliable unless constructed in the light of such information as the Army Council alone possesses.