HC Deb 20 May 1924 vol 173 cc1986-8
24. Lieut.-Colonel MEYLER

asked the Secretary of State for War whether he can now state how many temporary officers are still employed in the Royal Corps of Signals and also in the Array of the Rhine; and how many regular officers are serving in positions junior to them in the same Departments?


The number of temporary officers still employed in the Royal Corps of Signals and on the Rhine respectively is 11 and 40. There are no regular officers serving junior to any of the temporary officers in the Royal Corps of Signals. Three temporary officers on the Rhine have regular officers junior to them, but I am unable, without local inquiry, to state the number of the latter.

Lieut.-Colonel MEYLER

Will the right hon. Gentleman make local inquiry? Six weeks ago he offered to give me this information.


If I offered to give the hon. and gallant Gentleman this specific information, I regret very much that I have not had time to do so. But I am not at all sure that I made that promise. If I did so, I shall carry it out.

Lieut.-Commander KENWORTHY

Is not this temporary rating rather ancient now, having regard to the time that has passed since the War? Ought these temporary officers not to be replaced by permanent officers, or be themselves made permanent?


As a matter of fact that is the policy of the Department, and has been for a considerable time. But, still, the conditions existing are such that the change cannot be made with the speed desired.


Is any work being done by the corps of temporary officers which cannot equally well be done by the regular officers?


It could be done by regular officers, but we have had to take other considerations into account.


If it can be done by regular officers, why is it not done by regular officers?

Lieut. - Commander KENWORTHY

How many of these temporary officers are related to high officers in the War Office?




The hon. and gallant Member has appealed to me on the question of innuendoes contained in questions. Now he is guilty of that himself, and he must withdraw.

Lieut.-Commander KENWORTHY

I certainly withdraw. I was led away, and I ought not to have made such a statement.

47. Lieut.-Colonel MEYLER

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer what is the total estimated cost for the current financial year of the employment of temporary officers in the Army; and what is the cost of those employed with the Royal Corps of Signals, and also in the Army of the Rhine?


I have been asked to reply. The approximate cost is:

Of all temporary officers 165,000
Of temporary officers in the Royal Corps of Signals 4,500
Of temporary officers on the Rhine 18,000
The first of the above figures includes the last two, and these, two overlap each other inasmuch as two officers in the Royal Corps of Signals are serving on the Rhine.