HC Deb 10 May 1915 vol 71 cc1356-7

asked the Under-Secretary of State for War whether he is aware that some 300 men were recently drafted from the Universities and Public Schools Brigade at Epsom to the reserve of officers; will he say if any further selections are to be made from this battalion; whether privates can apply to the War Office for forms of application for commissions without the consent of their commanding officer; whether a recommendation for a commission can be given by the commanding officer of the corps in which the man served (say, in the Officers' Training Corps or a Territorial regiment) before joining the Universities and Public Schools Brigade, or must the recommendation be given by his present commanding officer; and is it permissible for a private to transfer from one brigade or battalion to another if he thinks by so doing he can improve his chances for a commission?


Some 750 applications for commissions from candidates serving in the ranks of the Public Schools Brigade are being dealt with, and further applications will also receive consideration. It is not desirable that private soldiers should address the War Office direct. Candidates should apply through their own commanding officer, but a previous commanding officer may communicate with the present commanding officer regarding a candidate's qualifications. As regards the last part of the question, transfers to other units for the purpose of improving a candidate's chances are not desirable. It is intended that all suitable candidates should have equal chances, but it will, of course, be necessary to avoid the simultaneous withdrawal of a large number of the members of a unit.