HC Deb 02 March 1921 vol 138 cc1810-56

Resolutions reported, 1. "That a number of Air Forces, not exceeding 30,880, all ranks, be maintained for the Service of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland at Home and abroad, exclusive of those serving in India, during the year ending on the 31st day of March, 1922! 2. "That a sum, not exceeding £4,794,000, be granted to His Majesty, to defray the Expense of the Pay, etc., of His Majesty's Air Force at Home and abroad, which will come in course of payment during the year ending on the 31st day of March, 1922.

First Resolution read a Second time.

Motion made, and Question proposed, "That this House doth agree with the Committee in the said Resolution."

Lieut.-Commander KENWORTHY

I do not want to enter into a discussion on the number of airmen voted under this Vote, especially in view of the absence of the Secretary of State for Air, but I wish to ask my right hon. Friend the Parliamentary Secretary whether he can reply to one or two points which I raised yesterday in our rather fore-shortened discussion. The discussion was cut short, as the House will remember, by a Motion for the Adjournment at 8.15, and I was purposely very brief in putting my points. The Secretary of State for Air no doubt had no wish to be discourteous in not replying to them, but as the Parliamentary Secretary was present and probably consulted on the situation with the Secretary of State for Air, I would like to know whether he will reply very briefly to the following points which are, I believe, of first-rate importance.

Mr. BONAR LAW (Leader of the House)

May I make an appeal to the hon. and gallant Member? I stated yesterday that as soon as possible after the return of my right hon. Friend (Mr. Churchill) I would arrange to give a day for the discussion of this Vote. I am sure it will be more useful to have a discussion later than to attempt it now.


In any case the subject is quite out of order on the Report of this Vote, on which we are confined strictly to the subject-matter of the Vote, namely, the number of all ranks. A general Debate would not be in order on this occasion.

Lieut.-Commander KENWORTHY

I am very much obliged. I had no intention of going outside the bargain, but I thought I should be in order, without raising any new points, to ask for an answer on the two particular matters to which I wish to refer. In view of what the right hon. Gentleman has said, I do not propose to press my point. In any ease I had no intention of raising new ground.

Question put, and agreed to.

Second Resolution agreed to.

Considered in Committee.

[Sir E. CORNWALL in the Chair.]

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