HC Deb 10 March 1920 vol 126 cc1282-3
79. Sir W. SEAGER

asked the Secretary of State for War the approximate number of Regular commissions to be granted to temporary officers; if it will be possible in the near future to acquaint the applicants whether or not their applications have been granted; and whether he is aware that many of these applicants are without employment?


I would refer my hon. Friend to the replies on the 2nd March to the hon. and gallant Members for Stirling and Clackmannan (Major Glyn) and Berwick-on-Tweed. It is not yet possible to state definitely the number of permanent commissions to be granted, and I regret it is therefore impossible to inform applicants whether their applications will be granted or not. I have no information which would enable me to answer the last part of the question.

Lieut.-Colonel W. GUINNESS

Can the right hon. Gentleman say how soon a decision may be expected, and is he aware that a lot of these officers are refusing to accept permanent civil employment in the hope that eventually they may receive commissions?


I am afraid it is not possible to fix a date when the decision will be announced, but I may say, generallly, there will be comparatively few commissions available, and mostly in technical branches of the service. Consequently, it would be unfortunate if officers delayed taking up employment.

Lieut.-Colonel GUINNESS

Is not the fact that there are going to be few commissions the more reason for coming to a quick decision?


No time will be lost, but it is impossible under present conditions to give a date.

Lieut.-Colonel ARCHER-SHEE

Will the right hon. Gentleman recognise the fact that there are several officers who won the Victoria Cross who are not being allowed to enter the Regular Army, although 23 years of age or thereabouts? I know of one case of a man, 23 years of age, with the Victoria Cross and Military Cross.


If the hon. and gallant Member will send a letter telling me of the case to which he refers, I will see whether it is possible to do anything.

Lieut.-Colonel ARCHER-SHEE

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that I have already sent this case to the Secretary of State for War, and the answer is that they are afraid he will not be able to get a commission?