HC Deb 04 December 1928 vol 223 cc996-7

asked the Secretary of State for War whether he will investigate the facts relating to the death of Edith Holman Smith, aged 20 years, the adopted daughter of a poor man named J. S. Cottington, who was killed during the autumn Army manoeuvres at Cuckfield, Sussex, on 11th September, 1928, while standing at the edge of the road and near to the roadside fence, by being knocked down by one of the tanks which, through a mechanical defect, failed to respond correctly to the steering and became unmanageable; and will he consider whether the sum of £25 paid to the father by the War Office as compensation should be substantially increased?


There was no legal liability in this case and the grant to which my hon. and learned Friend refers was purely ex gratia, but I am looking into the matter to see whether it is possible to justify an increased grant out of the public funds.


While grateful for that reply, may I ask the right hon. Gentleman to consider whether having regard to the circumstances of the father and to the assistance given by the deceased girl in the house, more generous treatment would not meet with local and general public opinion?

Lieut.-Commander KENWORTHY

Is there no easement for the Yorkshire-man from whom the right hon. Gentleman has taken £100?