§ 54. Mr. PETO
asked whether the definition in the Franchise and Registration Bill of the expression occupier will include and is intended to include all soldiers and sailors stationed in the United Kingdom; and whether the definition of the expression premises includes military and naval barracks?
§ 56. Mr. C. BATHURST
asked whether a soldier who has occupied for a continuous period of six months premises belonging to the War Office, such as Bulford or Tidworth camps, is entitled to be registered as a Parliamentary elector under Clause 1 (2) of the Franchise and Registration Bill; and, if not, what is the object of the Government in differentiating between soldiers and civilians?
The Bill makes no distinction between soldiers and sailors and any other persons, and if soldiers and sailors possess the qualification as residents or occupiers of premises required by the Bill, they will be entitled to be registered and vote as Parliamentary electors just as any other persons. "Premises" includes naval and military barracks.
The definition in regard to premises is that it includes any house or part of a house occupied for any purpose. I understand that in legal parlance it is quite clear that barracks would be included under premises.
§ Mr. KEIR HARDIE
Is any provision being made to enable soldiers and sailors to vote during their absence?
I explained, in introducing the Bill, that it was impossible to extend the Bill to matters of electoral reform.
§ Mr. C. BATHURST
Does residence by a soldier include occupation of one of those wooden buildings such as are found in Bulford and Tidworth camps?