HC Deb 11 July 1917 vol 95 cc1893-4

asked the Under-Secretary of State for War whether his attention has been called to the case of Mr. Stafford Thomas, a ministerial student, who received total exemption whilst at college, but, on a review of his case, was called up for non-combatant work although still at college and on the point of sitting for his final B.A. examination; whether he is aware that the examination was to take place between the 22nd May and the 2nd June, 1917, that the military authorities took him to prison two days previous, that he was at the detention barracks, Cardiff, awaiting court-martial when his examination took place; and whether he can say what national interest was served by this action of the military authorities?


asked whether Mr. Stafford Thomas, a preacher with the Welsh Calvinistic Methodists pursuing his studies at Cardiff University, was, in April, 1916, given total exemption by the Cardiff local tribunal so long as he remained at college, but was in May, 1917, called up for non-combatant work and refused facilities to sit for his examination in a few days; whether he was tried by court-martial on 12th June, 1917, and sentenced to 112 days' hard labour, and that he is now at Wormwood Scrubs; and whether, in view of the fact that the local tribunal were satisfied as to his conscientious objection to service, he will have the case reconsidered and the sentence remitted?


It is necessary to make inquiries in this case, and I will write to my hon. Friends as soon as I am in a position to do so.