HC Deb 25 November 1914 vol 68 cc1117-8
66. Mr. TOUCHE

asked the Under-Secretary of State for War if he is now in a position to state the result of his promised consideration of the question of increasing the credit to Sir Courtenay Bennett, Consul-General in New York, in connection with the transport to Europe of qualified men of British nationality, scattered throughout the different American States, who have offered their services to the Army; is he aware that the number of men sent over could be increased probably by several thousands with further assistance from the Government; that, without such further assistance, the opportunity of securing a great body of men of exceptional worth will be lost and the present patriotism of British subjects in the United States and Mexico discouraged; and will he announce his decision as early as possible?


My Noble Friend does not at present see his way to extend the arrangements now in force in the manner suggested.

68. Mr. TOUCHE

asked the Under-Secretary of State for War if he is aware that numbers of public-school men and others, British subjects, who have been ranching or engineering in the United States of America and in Mexico, many of whom have been campaigning in Mexico and are good shots and horsemen, are prepared to come over here for service at the front and bring their own horses and equipment, if some organisation is established here to which they could be advised to report themselves; that such men are willing to come at their own charges, especially if the Government will pay the cost of shipping their horses; and will the Government establish an organisation to which these men, probably numbering upwards of 3,000, can report themselves in order that their services may not be lost to the nation?


I hardly think it is necessary to establish a special organisation for this purpose. If the men in question are willing to come over at their own charges they will be gladly accepted for enlistment for general service in the Regular Army if they fulfil the required conditions.


Will the right hon. Gentleman try and raise some organisation to which these men could go on arriving here? Many men have come over and have found no particular place to which they can go. It is not very encouraging to them to come from abroad?


I will try and arrange something of the kind, but I cannot give any definite promise.