HC Deb 17 February 1915 vol 69 c1128
64. Mr. WATT

asked the Under-Secretary of State for War whether he is aware that payments for clothing supplied to the War Office are delayed by the contractors and sub-contractors to his Department for months beyond the due date in some instances; that the effect of this is that only the richer tailors are able to do War Office work; and whether he will see that this practice is no longer pursued by his Department?


Such delay as has occurred has been due to the greatly increased quantity of clothing which has had to be handled. There is no reason to believe that this has stood in the way of any firms which were properly equipped to undertake contracts. I hope that the improved arrangements now in force will prevent any further serious delay; but in case of necessity it is open to any contractor to apply for payment on account.


Is the hon. Member aware that the War Office has a very bad reputation as paymasters?


The blame is not entirely due to the War Office.