HC Deb 07 July 1919 vol 117 cc1380-2
35. Commander Viscount CURZON

asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Munitions upon what duties was a Government motor car, LU 6555, being employed at I.12 p.m. in Pall Mall on Wednesday, 2nd July; is he aware that two large dogs were in occupation of the car; and can he say for what purposes were they there?

The SECRETARY of STATE for WAR (Mr. Churchill)

I have been asked to answer this question. Motor car LU 6555 was detailed for duty with the Headquarters, Women's Legion (Motor Drivers), on the occasion referred to. The headquarters are at I5, Pall Mall East. The Commandant ordinarily used a motor bicycle and side-car, and invariably takes her dogs with her for the purpose of guarding the machine, which would otherwise be left unattended. On this occasion the motor cycle was under repair, so a car was used. There is no Regulation forbidding the presence of dogs in military motor cars.


Will the right hon. Gentleman say whether the dogs were muzzled or unmuzzled?


I see no reason why this woman officer, who has important duties to discharge, and is accustomed to use a motor cycle and side-car, and that is under repair, should not in an emergency be granted the use of a motor car. As to whether the dogs were in the car or not, I am surprised that the House of Commons should trouble about that.


Will the right hon. Gentleman answer the question of the right hon. Member for the City of London (Sir F. Banbury) whether these dogs were muzzled? If not, were they not breaking the law; and if they were muzzled how could they protect the cart



45. Lieut.-Colonel GUINNESS

asked the Prime Minister whether he will publish any Regulations which may have been made regulating the use of Government motor cars, and especially for restricting them to official business?


I hope to announce shortly the steps which His Majesty's Government have decided to take with regard to the use of Government motor cars.

Lieut.-Colonel GUINNESS

Does the right hon. Gentleman endorse the opinion of the Air Ministry that the conveyance of officials from their residence to the Ministry is official business?


It is a very difficult question, because—it is no exaggeration to say—there is more work now in Government Departments than before the War, and it is much more difficult to get outside communication. Already, however, a great deal has been done on the subject, and I hope to be able soon to announce a definite scheme.


Can the right hon. Gentleman say why there is much more work in Government Departments now than before?


I do not know, but I can guarantee it is so.


Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that the cost of running Government motor cars is about 32s. per mile, whilst a taxi-cab costs 8d.? Why should not taxi-cabs be used?


I should very much doubt the accuracy of that statement. The cost of Government motor cars, though very high, is not, I believe, higher than that paid by private individuals who use their own cars.