HC Deb 16 June 1915 vol 72 c662
37. Mr. R. MCNEILL

asked the Home Secretary if he is aware that a number of persons with surnames indicating German nationality or origin have recently by advertisement in the Press announced their abandonment of those surnames and their assumption of English surnames instead thereof; whether such substitution of English for foreign surnames by public advertisement is valid; whether, in view of the importance of facilitating supervision over all persons of hostile origin or association, in pursuance of the Regulation issued by Order in Council on the 12th of June, he will give instructions that all persons advertising such a change of surname shall be kept under close supervision by the police; and whether, if legislation be necessary for the purpose, he will introduce a Bill to prohibit such changes of surname for the future?


Legislation already passed has secured that alien enemies cannot change their name during the War. Other persons have made public advertisement of their change of name since the War began, including persons of long British descent and unimpeachable loyalty, whose only desire is to repudiate the remotest connection with the enemy. Proper attention will be paid to any suspicious case, but public notice of change of name is the last step likely to be adopted by persons desiring to escape the attention of the police.