HC Deb 03 December 1919 vol 122 cc386-7
44. Mr. CAIRNS

asked the Secretary of State for War whether Army Order 365, of the 17th October, 1919, provided for the release of men in the Signal Service by a date not later than the 15th instant; whether he is aware that expert Post Office telegraphists are being retained with the Royal Engineers at Maresfield Park camp quite unnecessarily, and that many of these men are being employed upon useless fatigues and have performed no signal work for over twelve months; whether these men are held to be covered by an amendment to Army Order 365, which excluded men of the Signal Service personnel; and whether, in view of the waste of force which is taking place in this camp, he will order their immediate demobilisation?

Captain GUEST

Army Order 365 does not provide for the release of any men by a date not later than the 15th November, but a letter was issued concurrently ordering the immediate demobilisation of Royal Engineer personnel at home with certain exceptions, including the Signal Service. This restriction, which does not in any way override the provisions of the Army Order, will be removed as soon as possible.

I understand that there are two Post Office telegraphists employed at Mares-field Park camp. One of these has just been withdrawn from a camp post office and is awaiting posting to a unit where he will be employed at his trade. The other is being employed on regimental duties.