§ the total number of men serving in the defence forces at the end of October, 1936, and 1935, respectively; and whether he will publish a return showing for each of the three Services the numbers in the regular forces, the auxiliary forces, and in the reserves?
§ The MINISTER for the CO-ORDINATION of DEFENCE (Sir Thomas Inskip)
The total number of men serving in the defence forces, including the auxiliary forces and the reserves, at the end of October, 1936, was 698,598 as compared with 660,820 at the end of October, 1935; the return asked for in the second part of the question will appear in the OFFICIAL REPORT.
§ whether the Government have taken any steps to ask the distressed areas producers to supply any material to any Government Departments; and if so, will he state the value or quantity supplied from these areas, and give the same particulars for the South Wales area for 1935, and the latest date in 1936 separately?
§ Sir T. INSKIP
Direct contracts to a total value of about £39,000,000 have been placed by the Defence Departments in distressed areas between 1st April, 1935, and 1st October, 1936. These areas of course also benefited by sub-contracting to an amount which cannot be estimated. I am advised that figures cannot be obtained for particular areas without undue labour.