HC Deb 14 March 1923 vol 161 cc1641-67

I beg to move, to leave out from the word "That" to the end of the Question, and to add instead thereof the words: That, pending the consideration as to the advisability or otherwise of the complete co-operation and correlation of the Army, Navy, and Air Force, this House is of opinion that immediate steps should be taken to eliminate unnecessary expenditure consequent upon duplication of staffs, or the elaboration of various and competitive plans dealing with the problems of air defence over land and sea. I have listened to the speech of the hon. and gallant Member for the Hallam Division (Sir F. Sykes) with a great deal of interest, and I, too, want to compliment him on it. He began by voicing the mind of a good many hon. Members on these benches when he said that people were tired of war, that they did not want war and that they wanted to seek some way of avoiding it. That is the spirit in which we approach these Estimates, just as it is the spirit in which we approach both the Navy and the Army Estimates. When the First Lord of the Admiralty, yesterday, was presenting the Navy Estimates, he was able to take credit for a reduction in expenditure, and I take it that to-morrow, when the Secretary of State for War presents the Army Estimates, he also will take credit for a reduction in expenditure. Unfortunately, to night, the Air Minister is not in that position, and, listening carefully to his speech, one did not get the impression that he was particularly regretful that he was not in a position to announce to the House a reduction of expenditure in regard to the Air Services. I am prepared to agree thus far with the right hon. Gentleman, that the Air Service is in its infancy, and there is every likelihood of its growing; and, perhaps, that may be a justification of the Government in not being anxious at this time to reduce expenditure upon it.

To-night, however, as it seems to me, we ought to consider the question which way the Air Service is likely to grow, and there are two aspects of it that I should like to put before the House, the one dealing with the question of increase of expenditure, and the other dealing with the question of policy. In my opinion, while the question of increased expenditure is an important one, the question of policy is of equal importance, and so for a few minutes I want to look at the question of policy. One rather anticipated that the Debate would centre upon the question whether the Navy is to have control of its own Air Service, whether the Army is to have control of its own Air Service, and, whether the Air Ministry is to control the Air Services, except those of the Army and the Navy. It really seems to me to become a question whether each one of these three Services is to be independent of the others. One noticed, on the Navy Estimates, several Amendments to the effect that the sole control of and responsibility for the Air arm of the Royal Navy should be vested in the Admiralty; and Amendments to the Air Estimates have been put down almost to the same effect.

We take altogether a different course from that suggested in the Amendments to the Navy Estimates. We believe that, instead of in-dependence, there ought to he co-operation of all the three Services. We believe that there should be no competition between them, and we suggest co-operation, not only in the interests of economy, but also in the interests of efficiency. We believe that. the machinery for co-operation already exists in the Committee of Imperial Defence. I want to make it clear that one is not suggesting that the Navy should not have a limited number of aeroplanes, so as to provide its own personnel. We quite recognise that a naval airman will be better to have, not only the habit of the air, hut also the habit of the sea. Our trouble with the Admiralty is that it thinks only in terms of one big fleet fighting another big fleet. I am not going to suggest, either, that the Army should not have a limited number of aeroplanes in which to train its own personnel to work as the eyes of the Army, but we feel that here, again, the trouble is that the War Office thinks in terms of an immense Continental army, and thinks of war as a business of one big army going to fight another. One rather regrets to say one feels that the Air Ministry seems to be thinking too much in terms of mass bombing. To many of us the most important question appears in be the question of trade routes and economic warfare.

One wants rather to emphasise the dual function of the Air Ministry. One knows that it. is called upon to deal with a new problem, but one wants to emphasise that that new problem is civilian as well as military and naval. It involves not only naval defence, but also the development of flight as a factor in commerce and general intercourse between nations. Even from a purely defence point of view, the aim of the Air Ministry should be to build up, not only an Air Force capable of defending the British Empire, but—and this is vastly the more important—to create something having the same relation to that force which the Mercantile Marine has to the Royal Navy. We believe this to be undoubtedly the best and the cheapest method of training a large number of men to fly and to acquire the habit of the air. A gentleman with whom I was discussing this question told me he believed that 90 per cent. of the requisite training—I am not going to pin myself to that figure, but he gave it as one who had a thorough knowledge of the question—he believed that 90 per cent. of the requisite training could be given to the men without. sending them up in battle, by encouraging civil aviation.

I do not know whether the Air Minister noticed an article written by Robert Blatchford in the last issue of the "Sunday Chronicle." I have never agreed with Robert Blatchford since, in the early days, he threw over his Socialism, but with much of this article one did agree. I do not know whether all the Members of the House were favoured by having the "Sunday Chronicle" sent to them, but many of us on this side were so favoured. I should like to read just a word or two from that. article. It says: There is no need to build a very large war fleet of aeroplanes, nor to train a huge army of pilots. I should rather like to emphasise this, because one got the impression from the Air Minister's speech that he was thinking only of military, and not of civil aeroplanes. The article goes on: The best way is that advocated in Riders of the Air ' "— a book that has been written on the question, in which, as we are told in the article, the author says: There is, surely, but one way, and Canada has adopted it. The military defence must be based upon civil aviation. Civil aircraft must be constructed with the necessary foresight to make the machines convertible at an hour's notice into military ones, and the personnel must be so trained as to make the men instantly ready for war. Civil aviation must he encouraged and developed as a great national asset. In dealing with the question of civil aviation, the Minister seemed to lead one to believe that, unless a company was prepared to put clown sufficient capital to establish this civil air service, there was no prospect of our having a civil air service, and he further gave the impression that the best. way to form this civil company was by subsidising it. We are strongly opposed to any subsidies to private companies. We believe that, rather than subsidise a private company, much the better way is for the Government. to face the, question, nationalise the air service, and fly the machines themselves.

There is one other question to which I want to refer, namely, the question of research. The Minister, when dealing with the question of research, seemed to treat it in a way that one did not like. He said that on the question of research they were dealing with the control of aircraft at low speeds, the, use of crude oil, and with gliding. We want to suggest to the Minister that, there is a larger field for research than he has mentioned to-night, for the large field in regard to defensive methods other than fighting in the air remains unexplored. The Minister and those connected with the Air Service seem to have the impression that all that can be done and thought about is fighting in the air. We believe that research ought to take the line of trying to find out some other method of defence. No one can tell yet, because the whole field is unexplored, what. defensive method might be found out other than fighting by aeroplanes in the air. We are bound to confess that, in our present state of ignorance, it is difficult to frame an adequate air policy.

With regard to increase of expenditure on the Air Service, we wish that, when the Geddes axe was applied so strongly and firmly to the Navy and Army, it had also been applied, even though gently, to the Air Service, because, while the Government have been able to save. by decreasing expenditure on the Army and Navy, they have to come here and acknowledge an increase of expenditure on the Air Service. It seems as though we have been saving on the swings and losing on the roundabouts. Even if it had not been possible for the Air Ministry to cut down expenditure, one thinks it might have been possible, at a time like this, for them not to increase expenditure. because, if one understood the Minister aright, the increase is largely due to the fact that 15 new squadrons are to be formed. If those 15 new squadrons had not had to be formed, there would have been no need to increase the expenditure on the Air Service. We were told that those 15 new squadrons were formed for the purpose of home defence, but, if it. were merely a question of home defence, I suggest that the better way would have been to have brought home the eight squadrons that are in the Middle East, instead of spending money upon new squadrons. That would have been far better than using them to bomb Arabs who do not pay their rates.


We do not do that.


I know that that has been denied in the House, but one also knows that Sir Percival Phillips still sticks to it., that his statement. is true, and one has never seen any contradiction made by the Air Ministry in the "Daily Mail."


I am sorry to interrupt the. hon. Member, but I do not think he could have been in the House when, on several occasions during this Session, I have made a definite denial of those charges. I think he will agree with me that the place to make a denial is this Chamber rather than the "Daily Mail."

7.0 P.M.


I quite agree that the Air Minster is right in saying that this is the proper place to make a denial. One cannot, however, forget this fact, that the statement was made in the "Daily Mail "and in a hook published by Sir Percival Phillips. Then the denial was given in this House, after which the statement was repeated by Sir Percival Phillips, who said it was true. I should be extremely pleased to accept the statement of the Air Minister that it is not true, because if such a thing has been done, we had better have no aeroplanes at all. If we simply have aeroplanes to collect rates, or to bomb Arabs who do not pay their rates, or to kill the mothers-in-law of Arabs, then it is far better to have no aeroplanes at all than to use them for that purpose.

One has noticed a rather great clamour in the Press for more aeroplanes, and for a greater and bigger Air Service than we have at present. I was surprised to read in a Sunday paper, last Sunday—it is a paper one regards as being always a moderate and intelligent sort of journal—this statement. The writer was dealing with an announcement that had been made by the Air Ministry, and he said: The Air Ministry announce that our Air Force is to be increased by fifteen squadrons. We only wish this Government were big enough to propose an increase of fifty squadrons. Even that would leave us seriously inferior to our nearest neighbours. As a standard, this country ought to set before itself air equality with the determination to achieve and maintain it at any price. The price would be low by comparison with the value of the object. The writer goes further, and says: Our minimum, however low, ought to be equal to the minimum of any other nation in Europe. To-night, when the Air Minister was speaking, I rather had the impression that he was telling us that we had only 371 machines against France's 1,260 machines, and that there was in the Minister's mind the thought that we should be justified in increasing the number of machines so as to get on a level with France. When he was making that statement, this thought went through my mind Have we an alliance with France? We have been told here, again and again, when we have been discussing the Ruhr question, that we still have an alliance with France. If we have an alliance, what is going to he the value of it? Does it mean that it is to have no value either so far as the Navy, the Army or the Air Force is concerned? If France and this country are in alliance, surely in one Department we ought to be justified in being much bigger than France is. We used to be told that Germany was building a big navy, and that it was essential for this country to build and maintain a big Navy in order to be in a position to fight her. It is to be hoped we are not going into that old bad policy again, and that, because France has more aeroplanes than we have, say we shall build a sufficient number of aeroplanes to get on a level with her. I hope we are not going to build a huge fleet of aeroplanes simply because some other nation is foolish enough to do it.


I beg to second the Amendment.

I do so on general grounds, as well as on a particular principle. I am emboldened to think that what he has said, and what the hon. and gallant Gentleman the Member for Hallam (Sir F. Sykes) has said, conveys my sense of general defence policy. Frankly, I would like to see the Admiralty, the War Office and the Air Service made a Ministry of Defence. We should destroy a few traditions, I dare-say, but they would only be bureaucratic; they would be the traditions of Whitehall which are not worth perpetuating. I do not think that destroying the Admiralty, and making it a part of the Ministry of Defence, would destroy any traditions, such as those of Trafalgar or Camper-down. I am sure that eliminating the War office, as such, would not obliterate memories so glorious as those of Minden or Albuera. The only traditions that would suffer at all are those which we can very well afford to do without. There is one other aspect of this Air stunt—I am afraid it is an Air stunt. We have been told to-night something about a scheme which has been propounded by the hon. and gallant Member for Uxbridge (Commander Burney). We have not been told exactly what that scheme is. It is this. The hon. and gallant Member for Uxbridge proposes to build 12 air liners, to carry 400 first class and 400 second class passengers, and 44 tons of baggage. He suggests that 16 of these aerial liners can be built at the price of one battleship.

Just look at this proposition for a minute. If there are 800 passengers, I presume the hon. and gallant Gentleman will want a crew of at least 200, and then I am afraid the ship will be a bit short. handed. That makes a thousand people. A thousand average people, provided you do not allow them any more personal luggage than a set of pyjamas and a tooth brush apiece, will weigh 65 tons, in addition to the 44 tons of baggage. I do not know how the hon. and gallant Gentle- man is going to build the ship, but, I presume he will have to have a cabin of some sort, and that he is not going to hang the people up on clothes lines and peg them there. They will want some place to lie down and some bedding. I suppose the airship will want some engines. Suppose you add 50 tons for the engines, because we should remember that it is a very enormous thing the engines will have to propel, there you will have 200 tons, to begin with. I do not know whether the hon. and gallant Gentleman has worked out his quantities at all, or if he has any designs prepared, because I should like to see them, if they are not too sacred or too valuable.

It, seems to me that the whole bulk of his ship is going to be about 1,000 tons. It is an ascertained fact that the displacement of 100 square inches of air will put into equilibrium, on the surface of the ground, 31 grains. The hon. and gallant Gentleman can work all this out. I am not trying to work it out accurately, but I am just jumping roughly at round figures. I apprehend that he will want at least, to be safe, 35,000,000 cubic feet of atmospheric displacement. Perhaps he can do it with a little bit less: I do not know. It seems to me that the ship will have to be about three-quarters of a mile long, and at least 100 or 120 feet in diameter. I do not think lie can do it. I do not think there are any appliances or materials that we know of at present that will bring about a result like this, however those materials be manipulated. It is a queer suggestion which underlies all this sort of talk about building fleets of airships so much more cheaply than you can build battleships; but think of the difference. You spend from six to nine million pounds—I do not know how much the current price is of a capital ship. When you have built it, it is quite strong enough and quite self-reliant enough to be left out all night in the rain. It does not take any harm if the wind gets up in the night. You cannot leave a monster airship out all night, because she safest when up in the air, and utterly unsafe if out in the open air, and pegged down at either end or both ends. Therefore, you have to build aerodromes. If you are going to have 12 of these ship running, you would always have two at home under repair in case of war breaking out, and somebody coming running after these things with bombing appliances. You will want some place to keep them in. Therefore, instead of their costing one-sixteenth of the price of a battleship, they would cost about four times as much in the long run.

That seems to me to put the whole thing out of court. It is all very well for these megalomaniacs to paint glorious visions of the wonderful things they can do. They cannot do this sort of thing. It is absolutely against the law. I am not referring to any Statute law. The hon. and gallant. Member for Uxbridge (Commander Burney) had better start a universal league, to see if he cannot prevail upon a higher authority to repeal the law of gravitation. I am reminded of a story told me by an hon. and gallant Friend, who said I could use it. He said that in his regiment there was a sergeant who was passing his musketry examination. The examiner asked him to indicate the forces which operated one way or the other upon a bullet when it left the muzzle of the rifle. The sergeant mentioned atmospheric pressure and initial velocity, and some other things. The examiner said, "Yes that is all right but what about the force of gravity?" "Well, Sir," he replied, "that was abolished in the last Army Order." It would be a very excellent thing if we could abolish that law.

Personally, I do not believe that the life of an airship is worth talking about, and certainly not worth spending money upon. I do not believe that civil aviation has more than very limited potentialities. I believe, it may he made a luxurious and costly mode of travel for a very few rich people. I do not believe it will be able to he brought into use for general transport. You may do something with it for meals but not a great deal. The unfortunate fact is that there is only one way to resist the force of gravity and that is by the exercise of prodigious and unremitting centrifugal force. It is not done anywhere in nature in any other way than that. It seems to me the heavier you makes these things the more force you have to call in, and the more force you call in the more weight you are going to have. While I believe the aeroplane has little or only a very limited future, the whole of its potentialities are warlike. It is going to be an important arm of the Services. It, is going to form alike defence and attack. That is why I suggest., with all deference to the experts and speaking just from the experience of an operative engineer that aeroplanes of limited size lend themselves particularly to what we know as mass production, and the secret of all mass production is accurate gauging and absolute standardisation, and I view with the greatest alarm a number of aeroplane engineers making any sort of things they like, standardising against each other and against us.

I want to know why that Farnborough factory cannot be more fully developed. You are not getting out of it what you might get. It was a well-equipped place until you formed the Air Ministry—I do not know what the Air Ministry has done with it—but you can do a great deal there, and what you must determine is type more than anything else. Then you must standardise and see that no one standardises against you. Most of us on this side of the House believe that private enterprise in munitions of war of all sorts and kinds should cease as soon as we can cause them to cease. We do not believe in individuals having the right and the privilege of making murder mechanism to sell to anyone they like in any part of the world, and we believe one of the first steps towards possible peace in the world is to stop this sort of thing, and for that reason we urge that. the defence of this country, in so far as it needs mechanism and in so far as it needs munitions and death-dealing apparatus of any sort or kind, should, as far as possible, be done under Government auspices. That is a thing I have said in respect to another Service a good many times in this House, but it seems to me it. is always worth repeating, because it embodies a very great principle. It is no use talking about world peace, while there are influences at work which make peace impossible. Yon can have peace in the world or you can have armament rings. Which would you like? You cannot have both, and you will never have peace as long as you let people make things of this kind and sell them to whoever they like in any part of the world, as long as you connive in the export or the import of contrivances for death and destruction. Just as long as you do that you are making peace utterly impossible from one end of the world to the other.


The interesting speeches we have heard from the Mover and Seconder are open to this criticism, that they have very little to do with the Amendment. We heard a great deal about the physical laws of the world from the Seconder, and a good deal about the importance of peace from both, but we heard almost nothing, I think, about correlation, co-operation, duplication and all the other impressive words which appear in the Amendment. What made the speeches still more unusual in Parliamentary form was that, on the subject of civil aviation, they were diametrically opposed to one another in opinion. I should think it is almost the first time in this House we have had an Amendment moved and seconded in speeches which have little or nothing to do with the Amendment but were contradictory of one another. I desire rather to address my observations to the original Motion that you, Sir, do now leave the Chair. That, of course, is the form by which the first step is taken to carrying our Estimates for the year. In the very interesting and instructive statement with which the Secretary of State opened the discussion he gave us a great deal of information, but naturally, and probably quite rightly, he did not deal with the ultimate purpose of the preparations for what he called home defence for which provision is to be made in the Estimates. It is clear, of course, from his lucid statement that there are two great sides to the activity of the Air Force. There is its function in respect to the non-European Empire, which may be almost called the function of a police force, or at any rate the function of fighting against non-civilised people, and there is the function of taking part, if such a calamity again happened to us, in a great European war.

When these Estimates were considered last year I pointed out, what still seems to me important, though I do not think anyone supported my criticism on that occasion, and probably no one will support it on this, that it is rather difficult to understand why, if you cannot. make effectual provision for taking part in a European war, you are making a provision which is confessedly less than effectual. I can understand saying the danger is so great that we must accept the considerable financial burden involved, and set up a great Air Force com- monsurate with the other great air forces of European countries, or I can understand saying we cannot at present afford to do that and therefore we will virtually leave home defence to slide. But I find it difficult to understand why we try to tread a middle path between those two courses and have preparation which is sufficiently large to be costly and not sufficiently large to be efficient. However, if my right hon. Friend thinks it indiscreet to reply, I shall not complain. If he does not he. will no doubt. say a word about it later on.

There is one observation which stems to me worth mentioning on the question of home defence. I gather it is the opinion of all who are skilled in these matters that, broadly speaking, and guarding oneself against stating the matte too absolutely, the aeroplane is not a. formidable defensive weapon. You cannot rely upon aeroplanes to defend the shores or the metropolis of this country against hostile aeroplanes, and accordingly it is said the offensive is the only defensive. That is to say, I suppose, the danger of retaliation is the only deterrent for attack. If that is so, it seems to follow that the measure- of our necessary Air Force is to he gauged rather by the harm it can do to a possible enemy than by simply comparing it with the force that that enemy can bring against us. It is clear that if all you can do by way of defence is to attack someone else, the important consideration is, how much mischief you can do that somebody and what force is necessary to do that mischief It does not really matter how disproportionately great is the force which is going to do mischief to you, because your only remedy is to do mischief to the attacking country. That seems rather to put out of court. comparisons with one Power, or two Powers, or the like. The problem is rather a different one in character and in kind from the problem of naval defence, and what one ought really to consider, however dreadful such considiration may be, is whether the Air Force is strong enough to inflict serious and crippling damage. upon any country which it may be our misfortune to be at war with. My right hon. Friend said none of us dream of anything approaching war with France at present. That being so, and it being clear that other nations in Europe, who are near and formidable from an air point of view, are all very exhausted, and unlikely to commence hostilities, I hold the opinion that the present duty of the Air Ministry is to study severe economy and to spend as little money as possible on anything except what is necessary and useful for the Imperial part of their functions.

At the same time, I hope the integrity and the homogeneity of the Air Force will be maintained. I know there is now a very important movement, how far extending to the Ministry we cannot tell, of course, but very important outside, pressing to reverse the policy undertaken when the Air Force was constituted, and to set up military and naval air arms, which would undertake the ancillary duties for the Navy and the Army which are now performed by the Air Force. As far as the problem of co-operation between the three great Services goes, I am entirely in agreement with what fell from my hon. and gallant Friend in that very interesting maiden speech which he delivered so much to our satisfaction and admiration in the earlier part of the discussion. I quite agree with him that the real solution of the problem is in some general co-ordination in the whole defence of the country of the three great Services, and that, whether in a Ministry of Defence or perhaps in some common general staff or by some other similar method, it may perhaps be found possible to overcome all the difficulties which arise out of rivalries or antagonisms between the Services. But pending some such solution and the decision of the great question by the proper authorities—and I am inclined to think we are not likely to see a Ministry of Defence created immediately or in the very near future—I hold strongly that in this period, when to a large extent we are waiting for the development of research, when foreign policy is feeling its way to a new state of things, when we do not know what will he the ultimate extent of the danger of war, when we do not yet know in what direction the real antagonists will be found, what is essential from all sorts of points of view, scientific research, foreign policy, strategic plans and so forth, is at the present time to retain quite unimpaired the homogeneity of an independent organised Air Force until all these questions are cleared up.

I know that people say that the Admiralty or the Navy find themselves in difficulty because the co-operation of the air is increasingly felt to be important for an efficient Navy and that, therefore, they desire to control, as they say, the air arm of the Navy. The word "control" is one of the most ambiguous of words, and it is so often used in political discussions and confuses the issue by being used sometimes in one sense and sometimes in another. No one can dispute that if there is an Air Force arm with the Navy for strategic purposes, and for all purposes of the operations of war, the command must lie with the naval officer who commands the fleet. No one imagines that we could have an independent body working for a common strategic purpose not under the orders of the commander of the main body.

But the word "control" is also sometimes used to mean something quite different, and that is, that the airmen who are doing work with the Navy should belong professionally to the naval profession and not to the air profession. I am sure that that is insanity. I do not believe that anyone who looks closely into the working of the Air Force could believe that such an arrangement could work Let me try to sketch how I imagine such a thing would work, if it were attempted. You must train the airmen who are to do work for the Navy. Presumably, you are going to take naval officers and send them to be trained, and unless you are going to spend a great deal of money you must send them to be trained at the same training colleges that exist for the Air Force. These officers will go there, and if they are going to do any good in the air they will become tremendously keen about it. They will get into the atmosphere of enthusiasm and zeal for everything that has to do with air enterprise, because that prevails most strongly at all these places of education.

They will come back to the Navy after their period of training, which period, if they are to be efficient airmen, cannot be limited to a few months. If they are to be efficient airmen the training must extend over years rather than months. After their period of training they will return to the Navy, zealously devoted to the air, and they will undertake their aerial duties in the Navy. They will find at once, I venture to prophesy, that there is a great lapse of sympathy between them and their naval coadjutors and commanders. They will find that they are at cross purposes at every turn. If they go on being enthusiastic they will become discouraged. Their attitude and feeling will react upon their superiors and comrades, and you will find that the air arm in the Navy will be looked down upon in the Navy. The Navy will dislike them, and the old joke about the Royal Naval Air Service will begin to apply again. The title R.N.A.S. was said to stand for the words, "Really not a sailor." Much the same feeling will grow up again. Accordingly, the naval arm will be recruited partly by these discouraged enthusiasts, partly also by the failures of the Navy, who will be pushed into the air arm because it will be thought that they will do less harm there than anywhere else.

You will have a small body without the strong professional atmosphere of the Royal Air Force, partly composed of disappointed, disgruntled enthusiasts, and partly composed of disheartened failures. The air arm will be unsatisfactory and inefficient.. It will not have the necessary keenness. Unless they have the keen enthusiasm there will not be the courage amongst the officers of the air arm in doing the work that is required. The main dominating function of this air arm co-operation with the Navy is aerial and not naval. They will have duties of reconnaissance, but that is a thing far more easily learned by an airman than all the work of flying and fighting in the air can ever be learned by a naval officer. You may see a battleship or a cruiser in the distance and identify it, or you may spot artillery fire and so forth, but these things do not govern the whole professional outlook as do the tasks of aviation and all its interests which dominate the mind of the ordinary air officer.

The truth is, that all these theories overlook one of the great factors of human nature, and that is professional outlook. We see professional outlook everywhere. It is a very odd thing, but one can always tell the difference between, say, doctors and lawyers just as we can tell the difference between both of them and clergymen. Although doctors and lawyers and clergymen are so like in their ordinary life, it is rather remarkable that by reason of their professional occupation they should become so different. You can almost tell the lawyer's face, stamped with lines, partly of cruelty and partly of patience, born of the long experience of inflicting humiliation upon witnesses and of enduring humiliation from Judges. Clergymen are notorious. One is always hearing complaints; and some clergy try to avoid, with very little success, what is called the "parsonic manner." The profession that a man follows enters deeply into his nature. The Air is really a profession. It exercises that sort of control over the minds of the people who engage upon it that makes it a true profession, and it is no more absurd to suggest that you can set soldiers to do the work of naval officers or the work of sailors in connection with the Fleet than it is to suggest that you can get naval officers to do the work of the Air. The airmen is as different, in fact more different, from either the sailor or the soldier as the sailor and the soldier are different from one another.

I hope that the Committee will reject any scheme by which the professional unit of the Air Force is broken. We want the airmen in the Navy to be first-class airmen, not makeshift airmen—first-class airmen, saturated with the professional spirit and the professional skill that belongs to their profession. Therefore I cannot quite echo the suggestion that a very hurried decision should be taken. The First Lord of the Admiralty, in a very interesting speech yesterday and in a few observations today, seemed to attach great importance to a rapid decision. I cannot help thinking that there is a certain danger if you try to hurry over questions of this kind. In time of war, rapidity of decision is all important. During the War, everything had to he done hurriedly, and everything had to be rapidly decided, ft is not. so in time of peace. It is far better to come to a wise decision slowly than to come to a foolish decision hastily. I am afraid that unless the Committee go slowly to work and see the whole subject in all its bearings, and study the various reactions which will take place as a consequence of the breaking up of the unity of the Air Force, and all the ancillary difficulties as to how you are going to deal with supply, with training, with the problem of reserve—all these questions which will come up directly you begin to consider this problem; and they bear upon the problem of whether we shall have a naval aerial arm instead of the co-operation of the three Services in one great task—I am afraid that an erroneous decision may easily be come to.

The problems of civil aviation are pressing. I echo the view that civil aviation is of the highest importance. The truth is that in this country we are at a disadvantage compared with other countries. In this country we are pursuing far more zealously than any other country in the world the policy of economy, and very wisely so, but, in the second place, this island of ours is by no means a very favourable place for aviation, compared with the United States or even France, where they have great expanses of country and vast opportunities for providing large aerodromes and all the surrounding topography which makes aviation so easy in America. We have not the conditions that enable aviation to be easily and simply pursued in this country. These two things, the lack of money and the lack of proper territory for the purposes of aviation, necessarily make civil aviation rather more difficult for us than for any other country. If we, on the top of these disadvantages, insist that our civil aviation is to have the ultimate prospect of becoming economically self-supporting, it is not surprising that the matter goes slowly. I would gladly see civil aviation developed, and I hope my right hon. Friend's interesting and ingenious plan will bear fruition.

In the meantime, I think he will agree that the great task of the Air Ministry is the task of research. I have spoken of the problem of offence and defence. I h ape that. the problem which was very seriously considered during the War, but which has fallen out of sight now, as to whether there are no means of defence against aeroplanes will be more sympathetically and thoroughly considered. We are told that we cannot protect London against being bombed by any means whatever, and that our best chance of protecting it is by threatening to bomb the capital of any country that assails us. This is a problem which we must consider. Therefore, on this and the other grounds I have mentioned, it is important that during the period of transition research should be proceeded with thoroughly. It is most important that the Air Ministry should avail itself of all the scientific knowledge that is at its disposal, and that it should promote invention by all the means in its power, so that the Air Force may become more and more efficient. I hope, also, that the problems of co-ordination and co-operation will become clearer, that the frontier between the Navy and the Air Force will be more easily drawn, that we shall maintain the homogeneity of an independent Air Force, and that we shall come to recognise that there is no advantage in discussing, as it has been discussed seven or eight times already, whether we are to have an independent Air Force, but that we shall leave the Air Force to pursue its useful task, certain that as in other matters, so in this, the sportsmanship, the natural skill and the natural enterprise, and the deep scientific interest which belong to England will make our Air Force worthy of the King and of the country.


I wish to pay my tribute to the Secretary of State for Air, not only for the speech which he has made to-day, but also for the whole-hearted interest which he has devoted to a subject of which ho had little knowledge before. But I do want to draw attention to the fact which has not been remedied since last year. That is, the Secretary of State for Air is still not a member of the Cabinet. People speak in favour of a Ministry of Defence, but the first step towards the maintenance of defence is to put the three Services on an equal footing, and every argument—and there must be many arguments—that goes on in the Cabinet to-day, is without a representative of the Air; and if we have that Ministry of Defence or that correlation of the three Services it is essential that the Secretary of State for Air should be in the Cabinet, and I am gratified to see the Prime Minister here, because otherwise that message might be difficult to convey. As the Prime Minister is here I draw his attention to the fact that Signor Mussolini, Prime Minister of Italy, considers the Air so important that he has taken over this job in that country.

I find it a little difficult to speak at this particular time, because we are speaking of three separate things. The Air Vote, the Amendment, and the Navy. I will deal first with the Amendment. I agree thoroughly with it, though it is obscure as drafted. It seems to me that you can say anything on it, and the Proposer and the Seconder contradicted themselves the whole way through. This Resolution would have been put down better on another Service, because it has always been the ambition of the Air Ministry to do exactly what has been suggested—that is, to put the distribution of funds for national defence on a basis of what you can get for your money, and it has been recognised as a basic factor that this money for defence has got to be looked on in relation to what you are going to get for it, and that the sooner we do that the sooner we are going to get economy. On the Air Vote the Noble Lord the Member for Oxford University (Lord H. Cecil) has put forward the attractive theory that if you cannot beat your enemy it is best not to waste money on half-measures, but one patent fact not satisfactorily explained by the right hon. Gentleman is the position in which we stand to-day relatively to a foreign Power I am sure that defensive power in the air, even to-day, must affect a foreign policy, because you cannot have anybody with a big stick and be able to answer him back, as you would, unless you had a bigger stick than he had.

In the case of the Air Force, it has been pointed out that an army fights an army and a battleship fights a battleship, and though to a certain degree a similar thing is true as regards aeroplanes, yet the basic use of air power is to destroy things of military value belonging to the enemy either on the land or sea. The reply to that is exceedingly difficult. It is not anti-aircraft guns. These are rather noisy things, but nothing else. There is the reply of building as many machines as your enemy and having the power to hit back Consequently, we come to this, that every effort must be devoted to some defence against aircraft. We have not explored many things that are possible. For instance, we have not explored the possibilities of the manless aeroplane, which you can direct by wireless, and which is not so very far off. There are many questions which can be gone into, from the point of view of re- search, and the sooner we find them the better, because otherwise we are met with the eternal business of building armament against armament, which we all consider so lamentable.

We had to-day also from the Secretary of State an interesting statement with regard to his opinion on civil flying. I thought it a pity that the hon. Member for Hallam (Sir F. Sykes) did not elaborate on that a little more. His speech gave me enormous pleasure, because, after all, the hon. Member not only was responsible in large part for the wonderful organisation of the Royal Flying Corps at the beginning of the War, but also for the foundation of civil aviation in this country, and every word which he says on this matter must be considered with great respect. The Proposer of the Resolution gave it as an accepted fact that a civil machine can be turned into a military machine in a minute. I do not claim to be an expert on these things, but I am told, on the best advice, that that is not so, and that the only advantage in keeping a big civil aviation going is that it gives you the manufacturers all ready to build with the necessary despatch when wanted. The proposal now put forward as a recommendation by the Hamblin Committee is one which was gone into very closely nearly three years ago, when I thinks that private money could have been got with great ease. It seems a pity that we did not go along those lines three years ago, when we might have something to show now rather than failure. The then Secretary of State for War and Air (Mr. Winston Churchill) was at the time in Egypt; had he been in England I believe that we should have passed that proposal and had a very different state of civil aviation to-day.

I now come to the last category in which one has to approach this Debate. That is the question of co-operation or not of the Air Force and the Navy. First, let me say that I have no quarrel with the Navy. If I have any quarrel, it is with the Admiralty, and as somebody has said in this Debate, if you say anything against the Admiralty it is lèse-Majesté. I am prepared to go to the Clock Tower for what I may say about the Admiralty. You cannot help admiring them. They are a very wonderful organisation. What they want they generally get. They have an, amazing propaganda. I do not know how it is done. It is not shown on the Votes. Sometimes it comes under the head of what is called "hard lying money," but we know that last week, when these Estimates were coming up, all the Press was flooded with their side of the question with regard to co-operation. Then we have Admiralty champions is with us. We admire the Noble reactionary Lord (Viscount Curzon), who asks questions every day about the Admiralty. This question of whether the Navy is going to have its own Air Force or not is becoming a hardy annual. We have it year after year. There have been inquiries by experts, and the thing has been decided. Personally, I have such faith in the answer that I do not mind whether there is an inquiry once a week for the next ten years. The result will always be the same. But what I ask of the Prime Minister is, when we. have this reply will it finish this whole matter? We are all getting sick of it, and we want an assurance that after this inquiry we shall have a little peace to get on with the job.

The grievance which our naval Friend brings forward is a little obscure. Our naval work is the best in the world, and we have better flyers than anybody else, and a better type of machine, but I want to draw his attention to the fact that the Washington Conference only allows you to have four aeroplane carriers and the Air Ministry have given the Navy more machines than they can put into service. I cannot understand what they are complaining about. They complain sometimes about discipline, that is, airmen on board ships have got, to do what the captain tells them, even if it is to scrub the ship. The whole reason is a purely sentimental one, and I thought that it was dealt with efficiently by the Noble Lord. We feel that years ago the Navy did not realise the power and the future which the air had in store, and they now seem to realise it too much. Even sailors themselves advance the theory that in 30 or 40 years ships will be unnecessary, and they draw this curious conclusion, that because ships will not be necessary that is a reason for doing away with the Air Force, though the logical conclusion would be that that would be a reason for doing away with the Navy. We have this curious propaganda, which seems to be spreading through the country, as to lifting the Navy into the air. For instance, we have this in the "Morning Post," which is particularly bad about it: If the Fleet has to be gradually lifted out of the sea into the air those best suited to conduct this policy are those who have made a study of and have lived upon the sea. 8.0 P.M.

I would point out that there is a Navy of the Air. That is the Air Force, and that is what it ought to remain. The Admiralty is after the whole hog. They are out to get the whole of the Air Force to themselves. In the course of the Debate on last year's Estimates, the First Lord of the Admiralty said: We have to consider the importance of the Air Force not only from the point of view of the defence of these islands against air attacks, but as an integral part of the naval defences of the country. Then I asked: Do I understand the right hon. Gentleman to say, that the Navy should he charged with the defence of the country against air attack? The First Lord then said: I did not say that "— what he had just said two lines above. That is what we are afraid of, that this agitation to get control of the Air Force is the thin end of the wedge, and we know the immense power of the Admiralty, the biggest bureaucracy in the world. When they get their feet in, they wilt do the same as when they were in partnership with the Royal Air Force. They will duplicate the training stations, they will have separate contract. departments, and. the two departments will be pitted against each other and have to pay enormous prices. I ask the House for-the protection of a small and new force against the older force. Surely, if an organisation were found bad in the War and another one was found good, when peace comes that is no reason for changing it.

Viscount CURZON

After the speech to which we have just listened I think it would be a good thing if we could have the Navy case put forward in as short a time as possible. The speech of the hon. and gallant Member for Chatham (Lieut.-Colonel Moore-Brabazon) was the kind of speech we are accustomed to hear from the perfervid advocates of the air who can think of no other consideration. You will never got co-operation between the Services so long as you have people animated by that mentality putting forward these views. The point of view, as I understand it, is this. The Navy itself requires an Air Service for purely naval purposes and nothing else. Nothing is more absurd than for the advocates of the air to come to this House and try to make out that this is a deep-rooted plot to uproot the Air Ministry and destroy the Air Service. It is my view and the view of many on the naval side that so far from doing away with it we definitely recognise the Air Service as an essential part of our national scheme of defence. What the Navy requires is an Ail: Service of its own with entire control and responsibility for it. It does not in any way wish to control air operations operating from the land over the sea.


Not yet.

Viscount CURZON

Nor in the future. What we want is complete control and responsibility for the Naval Air Service. The hon. and gallant Member suggested that the Admiralty wanted to set up separate training centres and everything else on its own. Nothing is further from the mind of the Admiralty.


They did it before.

Viscount CURZON

They did it before, and those who say so go back to the earlier stages of the War. That is one of the favourite tricks of the air people. The Navy want to organise the training of its Air Service as far as possible through the Air Ministry. If it gets its own air arm it wants to organise supplies through the Air Ministry, and it does not want to enter into competition with them. it wants to avoid overlapping and competition. The hon. and gallant Member said something about military propaganda. I wonder if he has looked at page 37 of these Estimates, where he will find an item for "Advertisements in newspapers, £1,000." I came across one of these advertisements in yesterday's "Daily Chronicle."

The headings were "Hands off the Air Ministry," "New Campaign against Air Service," "Aerial Warfare the Airman's Job." The advertisement reads: "They see their power waning, there is the rub." You can judge of the rest of the article by the headings and by that sort of sentence. What, the Admiralty wants is fair consideration for the case they will put forward. I urge upon the Prime Minister that this question has been under the consideration of the Committee of Imperial Defence for over a year now, and no decision has yet been arrived at. Another Committee, we are told, is to bet set up, and we learn that it is merely an extension of the Committee of Imperial Defence. I hope that is not merely a, device to delay everying. I hope the Committee will go into the matter without undue delay, and that when it comes to a decision it will do so with full knowledge of the Navy's case and without. prejudice against the Navy or the Air Service. Nothing I deplore more than the fact that a great many Members and a great many people in the country think that the Navy is antagonistic to the Air Service. It is not at all. The Navy looks on the Air Service as absolutely vital to it. Without it the Navy is completely blind when it goes into action against a Navy that has an Air Service. If a Navy not equipped with an Air Service tried to go into action against a Navy with an Air Service it would not have one chance. It is because of what is taking place across the Atlantic and elsewhere in connection with the use of aircraft with the Navy that. the Admiralty is so uneasy. It is no use having a one-power standard unless you give the Navy the Air Service it requires. At all costs we must represent the Navy case and see it gets fair consideration.

Question put, "That the words proposed to he left out stand part of the Question."

The House divided: Ayes, 235; Noes, 147.

Division No. 42.] AYES. [8.10 p.m.
Agg-Gardner, Sir James Tynte Baird, Rt. Hon. Sir John Lawrence Birchall, Major J. Dearman
Ainsworth, Captain Charles Balfour, George (Hampstead) Blades. Sir George Rowland
Alexander, E. E. (Leyton, East) Barlow, Rt. Hon. Sir Montague Blundell, F. N.
Amery, Rt. Hon. Leopold C. M. S. Barnett, Major Richard W. Bowyer, Capt. G. E. W.
Apsley, Lord Barnston, Major Harry Boyd-Carpenter. Major A.
Archer-Shee, Lieut.-Colonel Martin Becker, Harry Brass, Captain W.
Ashley, Lt.-Col. Wilfrid W. Bel lairs, Commander Carlyon W. Brassey, Sir Leonard
Astbury, Lieut.-Com. Frederick W. Betterton, Henry B. Bridgeman, Rt. Hon. William Clive
Brown, Major D. C. (Hexham) Harvey, Major S. E. Pilditch, Sir Philip
Brown, Brig.-Gen. Clifton (Newbury) Hawke, John Anthony Pownall, Lieut.-Colonel Assheton
Bruford, R. Hay, Major T. W. (Norfolk, South) pretyman, Rt. Hon. Ernest G.
Bruton, Sir James Hennessy, Major J. R. G. Privett, F. J.
Buckley, Lieut.-Colonel A. Hewett, Sir J. P. Rae, Sir Henry N.
Burn, Colonel Sir Charles Rosdew Hilder, Lieut-Colonel Frank Raine, W.
Burney, Com. (Middx., Uxbridge) Hiley, Sir Ernest Rankin, Captain James Stuart
Butcher, Sir John George Hoare, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Sir S. J. G. Rawlinson, Rt. Hon. John Fredk. Peel
Butt, Sir Alfred Hogg, Rt. Hon. Sir D. (St. Marylebone) Rawson, Lieut.-Com. A. C.
Campion, Lieut.-Colonel W. R. Hohler, Gerald Fitzroy Reid, Capt. A. S. C. (Warrington)
Cassels, J. D. Holbrook, Sir Arthur Richard Remer, J, R.
Cayzer, Sir C. (Chester, City) Hood, Sir Joseph Remnant, Sir James
Cecil, Rt. Hon. Lord H. (Ox. Univ.) Hopkins John W. W. Rentoul, G. S.
Chadwick, Sir Robert Burton Hopkinson, A. (Lancaster, Mossley) Reynolds, W. G. W.
Chamberlain, Rt. Hon. N. (Ladywood) Houfton, John Plowright Richardson, Sir Alex. (Gravesend)
Chapman, Sir S. Howard, Capt. D. (Cumberland, N.) Richardson, Lt.-Col. Sir p. (Chertsey)
Chilcott, Sir Warden Howard-Bury, Lieut.-Col. C. K. Roberts, Samuel (Hereford, Hereford)
Churchman, Sir Arthur Hume, G. H. Robertson, J. D. (Islington, W.)
Clarry, Reginald George Hume-Williams, Sir W. Ellis Robinson, Sir T (Lancs., Stretford)
Clayton, G. C. Hunter-Weston, Lt.-Gen. Sir Aylmer Roundell, Colonel R. F.
Cobb, Sir Cyril Hurd, Percy A. Russell, Alexander West (Tynemouth)
Cohen, Major J. Brunel Hurst, Lieut.-Colonel Gerald B. Russell, William (Bolton)
Colfox, Major Wm. Phillips Hutchison, G. A. C. (Midlothian, N.) Samuel, A. M. (Surrey, Farnham)
Colvin, Brig.-General Richard Beale Hutchison, W. (Kelvingrove) Samuel, Samuel (W'dsworth, Putney)
Cope, Major William Inskip, Sir Thomas Walker H. Sanders, Rt. Hon. Sir Robert A.
Cory, Sir J. H. (Cardiff, South) Jackson, Lieut.-Colonel Hon. F. S. Sanderson, Sir Frank B.
Craig, Captain C. C. (Antrim, South) Jenkins, W. A. (Brecon and Radnor) Sandon, Lord
Craik, Rt. Hon. Sir Henry Jodrell, Sir Neville Paul Shakespeare, G. H.
Crook, C. W. (East Ham, North) Jones, G. W. H. (Stoke Newington) Sheffield, Sir Berkeley
Crooke, J. S. (Derltend) Kennedy, Captain M. S. Nigel Shepperson, E. W.
Curzon, Captain Viscount King, Captain Henry Douglas Shipwright, Captain D.
Davidson, Major-General Sir .J. H. Lamb, J. Q. Simms, Dr. John M. (Co. Down)
Davies, Alfred Thomas (Lincoln) Lane-Fox, Lieut.-Colonel G. R. Simpson- Hinchliffe, W. A.
Davies, Thomas (Cirencester) Law, Rt. Hon. A. B. (Glasgow, C.) Singleton, J. E.
Dixon, C. H. (Rutland) Lloyd, Cyril E. (Dudley) Skelton, A. N.
Doyle, N. Grattan Lort-Williams, J. Smith, Sir Allan M. (Croydon, South)
Du Pre, Colonel William Baring Lougher, L. Somerville, A. A. (Windsor)
Edge, Captain Sir William Loyd, Arthur Thomas (Abingdon) Somerville, Daniel (Barrow-in-Furness)
Edmondson, Major A. J, Macnaghten, Hon. Sir Malcolm Spender-Clay, Lieut.-Colonel H. H.
Ednam, Viscount McNeill, Ronald (Kent, Canterbury) Stanley, Lord
Ellis, R. G. Maddocks, Henry Steel, Major S. Strang
Erskine, Lord (Weston-super-Mare) Malone, Major P. B. (Tottenham, S.) Stewart, Gershorm (Wirral)
Erskine-Bolst, Captain C. Mason, Lieut.-Col. C. K. Stockton, Sir Edwin Forsyth
Evans, Capt. H. Arthur (Leicester, E.) Mercer, Colonel H. Stott, Lt.-Col. W. H.
Evans, Ernest (Cardigan) Milne, J. S. Wardlaw Stuart, Lord C. Crichton-
Falle, Major Sir Bertram Godfray Mitchell, W. F. (Saffron Walden) Sueter, Rear-Admiral Murray Fraser
Fermor-Hesketh, Major T. Mitchell, Sir W. Lane (Streatham) Sugden, Sir Wilfrid H.
Flanagan, W. H. Molloy, Major L. G. S. Sykes, Major-Gen. Sir Frederick H.
Forestier-Walker, L. Molson, Major John Elsdale Terrell, Captain R. (Oxford, Henley)
Foxcroft, Captain Charles Talbot Moore-Brabazon, Lieut.-Col. J. T. C. Thomson, F. C. (Aberdeen, South)
Fraser, Major Sir Keith Morden, Col, W. Grant Thorpe, Captain John Henry
Fremantle, Lieut.-Colonel Francis E. Morris, Harold Titchfield, Marquess of
Furness, G. J. Murchison, C. K. Tryon, Rt. Hon. George Clement
Galbraith, J. F. W. Nail, Major Joseph Tubbs, S. W.
Ganzoni, Sir John Nesbitt, Robert C. Turton Edmund Russborough
Gaunt, Rear-Admiral Sir Guy R. Newman, sir R. H. S. D. L. (Exeter) Wallace, Captain E.
Goff, Sir R. Park Newson, Sir Percy Wilson Ward, Col. L. (Kingston-upon-Hull)
Gould, James C. Newton, Sir D, G. C. (Cambridge) Wells, S. R.
Gray, Harold (Cambridge) Nicholson, Brig.-Gen. J. (Westminster) Wheler, Col. Granville C. H.
Greaves Lord, Walter Nicholson, William G. (Petersfield) White, Lt.-Col. G. D. (Southport)
Greene, Lt.-Col. Sir W. (Hack'y, N.) Nield, Sir Herbert Whitia, Sir William
Greenwood, William (Stockport) Oman, Sir Charles William C. Wilson, Col. M. J. (Richmond)
Gretton, Colonel John Ormsby-Gore, Hon. William Winterton, Earl
Guinness, Lieut.-Col. Hon. W. E. Parry, Lieut.-Colonel Thomas Henry Wise, Frederick
Gwynne, Rupert S. Pease, William Edwin Wolmer, Viscount
Hacking, Captain Douglas H. Pennefather, De Fonblanque Wood, Rt. Hn. Edward F. L. (Ripon)
Hall, Lieut.-Col. Sir F. (Dulwich) Penny, Frederick George Yate, Colonel Sir Charles Edward
Hall, Rr-Adml Sir W.(Liv'p'l,W.D-by) Percy, Lord Eustace (Hastings) Yerburgh, R. D. T.
Halstead, Major D. Perkins, Colonel E. K.
Hamilton, Sir George C. (Altrincham) Perring, William George TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—
Hannon, Patrick Joseph Henry Philipson, H. H. Colonel Leslie Wilson and Colonel
Adams, D. Broad, F. A. Cairns, John
Adamson, Rt. Hon. William Bromfield, William Cape, Thomas
Alexander, A. V. (Sheffield, Hillsbro') Brotherton, J. Charleton, H. C.
Attlee, C. R. Brown, James (Ayr and Bute) Clarke, Sir E. C.
Barker, G. (Monmouth, Abertillery) Buchanan, G. Collins, Pat (Walsall)
Barnes, A. Buckle, J. Collison, Levi
Batey, Joseph Burgess, S. Davies, Evan (Ebbw Vale)
Berkeley, Captain Reginald Burnie, Major J. (Bootle) Davies, Rhys John (Westhoughton)
Bonwick, A. Buxton, Charles (Accrington) Davison, J. E. (Smethwick)
Bowdler, W. A. Buxton, Noel (Norfolk, North) Dudgeon, Major C. R.
Duffy, T. Gavan Lansbury, George Shinwell, Emanuel
Duncan, C. Lawson, John James Short, Alfred (Wednesbury)
Dunnico, H. Leach, W. Simpson, J. Hope
Ede, James Chuter Lee, F. Sitch, Charles H.
Edwards, C. (Monmouth, Bedwellty) Lees-Smith, H. B. (Keighley) Smith, T. (Pontefract)
Emlyn-Jones, J. E. (Dorset, N) Linfield, F. C. Snell, Harry
Entwistle, Major C. F. Lowth. T. Spencer, George A. (Broxtowe)
Falconer, J Lunn, William Spencer, H. H. (Bradford, S.)
Foot, Isaac MacDonald, J. R. (Aberavon) Stephen, Campbell
Gosling, Harry M'Entee, V. L. Stewart, J. (St. Rollox)
Graham, D. M. (Lanark, Hamilton) McLaren, Andrew Sullivan, J.
Gray, Frank (Oxford) Maclean, Nell (Glasgow, Govan) Thomas, Rt. Hon. James H. (Derby)
Greenall, T. March, S. Thomson, T. (Middlesbrough, West)
Greenwood, A. (Nelson and Colne) Marshall, Sir Arthur H. Thorne, G. R. (Wolverhampton, E.)
Grenfell, D. R. (Glamorgan) Maxton, James Thorne, W. (West Ham, Plaistow)
Groves, T. Middleton, G. Thornton, M.
Hall, F. (York, W. R., Normanton) Millar, J. D. Tout, W. J.
Hall, G. H. (Merthyr Tydvll) Muir, John W. Wallhead, Richard C.
Hardie, George D. Murnin, H. Walsh, Stephen (Lancaster. Ince)
Harney, E. A. Murray, R. (Renfrew, Western) Warne, G. H.
Harris, Percy A. Nichol, Robert Watson, W. M. (Dunfermline)
Hartshorn, Vernon O'Grady, Captain James Watts-Morgan. Lt.-Col. D. (Rhondda)
Hay, Captain J. P. (Cathcart) Oliver, George Harold Webb, Sidney
Hayday, Arthur Paling, W. Wedgwood, Colonel Josiah C
Henderson, T. (Glasgow) Parker, H. (Hanley) Welsh, J. C
Herriotts, J. Parkinson, John Ailen (Wigan) Weslwood, J.
Hill, A. Phillipps, Vivian Wheatley. J.
Hirst, G. H. Ponsonby, Arthur White. H. G. (Birkenhead E)
Hodge, Rt. Hon. John Potts, John S. Whiteley, W.
Hodge, Lieut.-Col. J. P. (Preston) Pringle, W. M. R. Wiqnall, James
Irving, Dan Richardson, R. (Houghton-le-Spring) Williams, David (Swansea, E.)
Jenkins, W. (Glamorgan, Neath) Riley, Ben Williams, T. (York, Don Valley)
John. William (Rhondda, West) Ritson, J. Wilson, C. H. (Sheffield, Attercliffe)
Johnston, Thomas (Stirling) Roberts, C. H. (Derby) Wilson, R. J. (Jarrow)
Jones, Henry Haydn (Merioneth) Roberts, Frederick O. (W. Bromwich) Wood, Major M. M. (Aberdeen, C.)
Jones, Morgan (Caerphilly) Robertson, J. (Lanark, Bothwell) Wright, W.
Jones, T. I. Mardy (Pontypridd) Robinson, W. C. (York, Elland) Young, Robert (Lancaster, Newton)
Jowett, F. W. (Bradford, East) Rose, Frank H.
Jowitt, W. A. (The Hartlepools) Saklatvala, S. TELLERS FOR THE NOES —
Kenworthy, Lieut.-Commander J. M. Sexton, James Mr. Arthur Henderson and Mr. T.
Kirkwood, D. Shaw, Thomas (Preston) Griffiths.

Question put, and agreed to.

Supply Considered in Committee.

[Mr. JAMES Hoes in the Chair.]

Motion made, and Question proposed,