§ MR. BRODIE (Surrey, Reigate)
To ask the Postmaster-General whether he will state approximately in what proportion of cases it will be possible for Post Office servants who are members of the Territorial Force to go to camp without providing substitutes; whether the order recently issued with regard to leave for camp will in effect mean that no men in the Post Office service will be able to attend camp without sacrificing the greater part of their civil pay; and whether he can state the number of men in the Post Office service requiring leave of absence for Territorial camps.
(Answered by Mr. Sydney Buxton.) I regret that I am unable to state, even approximately, what proportion of the Post Office members of the Territorial Force will be able to attend camp on special leave without providing substitutes; I fear, however, it must necessarily be a small proportion only, as no reserve of staff is provided to meet such cases and the work of absentees must be dealt with from day to day. Moreover, the officers are away at the time of year when the staff is most depleted by holiday leave. The recent regulations issued by the Treasury with regard to leave to Civil Service members of the Territorial Force to enable them to attend camp will no doubt involve the sacrifice by most of the Post Office men concerned of a considerable portion of their civil pay unless they attend camp during their ordinary holiday. I shall not be in a position to state the number of men in the Post Office service who required leave for the purpose of attending camp until after the close of the training season.