§ [20TH ALLOTTED DAY.]
§ REPORT [26th July].
§ Resolutions reported,
§ CIVIL ESTIMATES AND ESTIMATES FOR REVENUE DEPARTMENTS AND SUPPLEMENTARY ESTIMATES, 1937.
1. "That a sum, not exceeding £244,016, he granted to His Majesty, to complete the sum necessary to defray the charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending on the 31st day of March, 1938, for the Salaries and other Expenses in the Department of His Majesty's Treasury and Subordinate Departments, and the Salary of the Minister for Co-ordination of Defence."
2. "That a sum, not exceeding £197,205 (including a Supplementary sum of £65,000), be granted to His Majesty, to complete the sum necessary to defray the charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending on the 31st day of March, 1938, for the Salaries and Expenses of the Mines Department of the Board of Trade.
§ CIVIL ESTIMATES, 1937.
3. "That a sum, not exceeding £1,388,266, be granted to His Majesty, to complete the sum necessary to defray the charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending on the 31st day of March, 1938, for Expenditure in respect of the Services included in Class I of the Civil Estimates, namely:
|1. House of Lords Offices||…||25,718|
|2. House of Commons (including a Supplementary sum of £84,300)||…||…||321,667|
|3. Expenses under the Representation of the People Acts||…||…||…||195,000|
|5. Privy Council Office||…||8,550|
|6. Privy Seal Office||…||…||2,407|
|7. Charity Commission||…||26,613|
|8. Civil Service Commission||…||11,672|
|9. Exchequer and Audit Department||…||…||…||89,983|
|10. Friendly Societies' Deficiency||…||…||…||5,542|
|11. Government Actuary||…||22,219|
|12. Government Chemist||…||53,641|
|13. Government Hospitality||…||10,000|
|14. Import Duties Advisory Committee||…||…||40,729|
|15. The Mint||…||…||…||90|
|16. National Debt Office||…||2,658|
|17. National Savings Committee||…||…||…||74,997|
|18. Public Record Office||…||27,323|
|19. Public Works Loan Commission||…||…||…||90|
|20. Repayments to the Local Loans Fund||…||…||32,899|
4. "That a sum, not exceeding £6,056,129, be granted to His Majesty, to complete the sum necessary to defray the charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending on the 31st day of March, 1938, for Expenditure in respect of the Services included in Class II of the Civil Estimates, namely:
|1. Foreign Office||…||…||84,956|
|2. Diplomatic and Consular Services (including a Supplementary sum of £189,680)||…||…||…||844,997|
|3. League of Nations||…||74,500|
|4. Dominions Office||…||…||38,031|
|5. Dominion Services||…||…||433,234|
|6. Irish Free State Services||…||1,782,752|
|7. Oversea Settlement||…||…||26,750|
|8. Colonial Office||…||…||114,549|
|9. Colonial and Middle Eastern Services including a Supplementary sum of £10,000)||…||…||…||718,167|
|10. Colonial Development Fund||350,000|
|11. India and Burma Services||…||1,194,819|
|12. Imperial War Graves Commission||…||…||…||393,374|
5. "That a sum, not exceeding £13,547,192, he granted to His Majesty, to complete the sum necessary to defray the charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending on the 31st day of March, 1938, for Expenditure in respect of the Services included in Class III of the Civil Estimates, namely:
|1. Home Office||…||…||…||3,851,957|
|2. Broadmoor Criminal Lunatic Asylum||…||…||…||48,659|
|3. Police, England and Wales||6,301,188|
|4. Prisons, England and Wales||584,266|
|5. Approved Schools, etc., England and Wales||…||319,450|
|6. Supreme Court of Judicature, etc.||…||…||…||90|
|7. County Courts||…||…||90|
|8. Land Registry||…||…||90|
|9. Public Trustee||…||…||90|
|10. Law Charges||…||…||83,421|
|11. Miscellaneous Legal Expenses||…||…||…||8,276|
6. "That a sum, not exceeding £40,065,927, be granted to His Majesty, to complete the sum necessary to defray the charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending on the 31st day of March, 1938, for Expenditure in respect of the Services included in Class IV of the Civil Estimates, namely:
|1. Board of Education (including a Supplementary sum of £177,000)||…||…||31,538,959|
|2. British Museum||…||…||106,949|
|3. British Museum (Natural History)||…||…||…||72,508|
|4. Imperial War Museum||…||8,345|
|5. London Museum||…||…||3,764|
|6. National Gallery||…||…||17,187|
|7. National Maritime Museum||8,060|
|8. National Portrait Gallery||…||6,034|
|9. Wallace Collection||…||…||7,402|
|10. Scientific Investigation, etc.||142,992|
|11. Universities and Colleges, Great Britain||…||…||1,255,000|
|13. Public Education||…||…||4,529,216|
|14. National Galleries||…||…||7,245|
|15. National Library||…||…||2,266|
7. "That a sum, not exceeding £110,562,476, be granted to His Majesty, to complete the sum necessary to defray the charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending on the 31st day of March, 1938, for Expenditure in respect of the Services included in Class V of the Civil Estimates, namely:
|1. Ministry of Health||…||16,093,846|
|1A. Grants to Public Assistance Authorities (England and Wales)||…||…||…||10,000|
|2. Board of Control||…||…||94,771|
|3. Registrar General's Office||64,717|
|4. National Insurance Audit Department||…||…||111,560|
|5. Friendly Societies Registry||32,090|
|6. Old Age Pensions||…||…||28,719,000|
|7. Widows', Orphans' and Old Age Contributory Pensions||…||…||…||10,000,000|
|8. Ministry of Labour||…||14,338,000|
|9. Grants in respect of Employment Schemes||…||2,550,000|
|10. Commissioner for Special Areas (England and Wales) (including a Supplementary sum of £10)||100|
|11. Unemployment Assistance Board (including a Supplementary sum of £110,000)||…||…||…||33,370,000|
|12. Special Areas Fund||…||2,500,000|
|12A. Financial Assistance in Special and other Areas||301,047|
|13. Department of Health||…||2,348,501|
|14. Board of Control||…||…||10,831|
|15. Registrar-General's Office||…||11,913|
|16. Commissioner for Special Areas (Scotland) (including a Supplementary sum of £10)||…||…||…||100|
|17. Grants to Public Assistance Authorities||…||…||6,000|
8. "That a sum, not exceeding £26,654,368, be granted to His Majesty, to complete the sum necessary to defray the charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending on the 31st day of March, 1938, for Expenditure in respect of the Services included in Class VI of the Civil Estimates, namely:
|1. Board of Trade||…||…||205,532|
|2. Mercantile Marine Services||266,131|
|3. Assistance to British Shipping||…||…||…||8,510|
|4. Department of Overseas Trade||…||…||…||312,942|
|5. Export Credits||…||…||90|
|7. Office of Commissioners of Crown Lands||…||…||24,574|
|8. Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries (including a Supplementary sum of £204,850)||…||…||…||1,571,901|
|9. Beet Sugar Subsidy, Great Britain||…||…||…||2,249,900|
|10. Milk (England and Wales and Northern Ireland) (including a Supplementary sum of £248,000)||372,000|
|11. Livestock Industry and Cattle Fund||…||…||3,328,967|
|11A. Land Fertility Improvement||…||864,100|
|12. Surveys of Great Britain||…||218,875|
|13. Forestry Commission||…||550,000|
|14. Ministry of Transport||…||130,942|
|15. Roads, etc.||…||…||…||14,500,000|
|16. Development Fund||…||415,000|
|17. Development Grants||…||580,830|
|18. Department of Scientific and Industrial Research||…||437,850|
|19. State Management Districts||90|
|20. Clearing Offices||…||…||90|
|21. Department of Agriculture (including a Supplementary sum of £18,880)||426,854|
|22. Milk (including a Supplementary sum of £10)||71,110|
|23. Fishery Board for Scotland||83,080|
|24. Herring Industry||…||…||35,000|
9. "That a sum, not exceeding £4,445,451, be granted to His Majesty, to complete the sum necessary to defray the charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending on the 31st day of March, 1938, for Expenditure in respect of the Services included in Class VII of the Civil Estimates, namely:
|1. Art and Science Buildings, Great Britain||…||…||216,575|
|2. Houses of Parliament Buildings||…||…||…||87,170|
|3. Labour and Health Buildings, Great Britain||…||260,530|
|4. Miscellaneous Legal Buildings, Great Britain||…||85,540|
|6. Office of Works and Public Buildings||…||…||…||310,830|
|7. Public Buildings, Great Britain (including Supplementary sum of £13,000)||…||…||…||1,142,680|
|9. Royal Palaces||…||…||83,160|
|11. Royal Parks and Pleasure Gardens||…||…||…||151,040|
|12. Rates on Government Property||…||…||…||944,435|
|13. Stationery and Printing||…||1,111,981|
|14. Peterhead Harbour||…||…||21,000|
|15. Works and Buildings in Ireland||…||…||…||22,380|
10. "That a sum, not exceeding £27,387,625, be granted to His Majesty, to complete the sum necessary to defray the charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending on the 31st day of March, 1938, for Expenditure in respect of the Services included in Class VIII of the Civil Estimates, namely:
|1. Merchant Seamen's War Pensions||…||…||179,997|
|2. Ministry of Pensions||…||25,300,000|
|3. Royal Irish Constabulary Pensions, etc.||…||…||814,415|
|4. Superannuation and Retired Allowances||…||…||1,093,213|
11. "That a sum, not exceeding £33,592,000, be granted to His Majesty, to complete the sum necessary to defray the charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending on the 31st day of March, 1938, for Expenditure in respect of the Services included in Class IX of the Civil Estimates, namely:
|1. Exchequer Contributions to Local Revenues, England and Wales||…||…||29,002,000|
|2. Exchequer Contributions to Local Revenues, Scotland||4,590,000|
REVENUE DEPARTMENTS ESTIMATES, 1937.
12. "That a sum, not exceeding £55,524,600, he granted to His Majesty, to complete the sum necessary to defray the charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending on the 31st day of Match, 1938, for Expenditure in respect of the Services included in the Estimates for Revenue Departments, namely:
|1. Customs and Excise||…||3,873,100|
|2. Inland Revenue||…||…||5,323,500|
|3. Post Office||…||…||…||46,328,000|
NAVY ESTIMATES, 1937.
13. "That a sum, not exceeding £47,944,000, be granted to His Majesty, to defray the charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending on the 31st day of March, 1938, for Expenditure in respect of the Navy Services, namely:
|3. Medical Establishments and Services||411,400|
|4. Fleet Air Arm||4,200,000|
|5. Educational Services||207,500|
|6. Scientific Services||586,000|
|7. Royal Naval Reserves||373,300|
|8. Shipbuilding, Repairs, Maintenance, etc.:|
|Section III.— Contract|
|9. Naval Armaments||7,769,700|
|11. Miscellaneous Effective Services||812,600|
|12. Admiralty Office||1,459,000|
ARMY ESTIMATES, 1937.
14. "That a sum, not exceeding £31,436,000, be granted to His Majesty, to defray the charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending on the 31st day of March, 1938, for Expenditure in respect of the Army Services (including Royal Ordnance Factories), namely:
|3. Medical Services||…||…||1,055,000|
|4. Educational Establishments||1,053,000|
|5. Quartering and Movements||1,909,000|
|6. Supplies, Road Transport and Remounts||…||…||6,005,000|
|8. General Stores||…||…||2,923,000|
|9. Warlike Stores||…||…||15,880,000|
|12. War Office||…||…||…||1,046,000|
AIR ESTIMATES, 1937.
15. "That a sum, not exceeding £10,177,000, be granted to His Majesty, to defray the charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending on the 31st day of March, 1938, for Expenditure in respect of the Air Services, namely:
|2. Quartering, Stores (except Technical), Supplies and Transportation||…||…||4,476,000|
|5. Medical Services||…||…||439,000|
|6. Technical Training and Educational Services||…||…||741,000|
|7. Auxiliary and Reserve Forces||…||…||…||1,360,000|
|9. Meteorological and Miscellaneous Effective Services||1,429,000|
|10. Air Ministry||…||…||…||1,250,000|
|11. Half-Pay, Pensions, and other Non-Effective Services||…||…||…||482,000|
§ 4.20 p.m.
§ Sir Archibald Sinclair
I beg to move, to leave out "244,016," and to insert "£243,916."
The first ground on which I seek to justify that action is that the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence is not discharging, and is not even equipped to discharge, the full function of co-ordination which Parliament intended to attribute to him. It was not as a Minister of Supply that he was appointed, but as a Minister to co-ordinate policy and action in the sphere of Defence. The right hon. Gentleman was hardly given a fair start. He was appointed after the Defence plans, which he ought to have been chiefly responsible for making, had already been framed. Then his functions were kept within the narrowest limits that could be imposed without incurring the opposition of Parliament. The announcement made in another place by Lord Swinton that the new Minister would be the Chairman of the Chiefs of Staff Committee and that they would be working to him the whole time—and that, he added, was the essence 2900 of the proposal—was whittled down to the statement in last year's White Paper that it was not proposed that the meetings of the Chiefs of Staff Committee should normally take place under his chairmanship.
How have these arrangements worked out in practice? On the 17th of this month, the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence delivered a speech, at Oxford, to the Royal Empire Society in which he stated—and none of us feels surprised at the statement—that he was sometimes terrified at the scope of the responsibilities which rest upon his shoulders. He explained how he had to discharge those responsibilities. He said:I have no executive authority.He ought to have, and this House intended that he should have. He said:I have no financial responsibility.He ought to have financial responsibility. Finance is in itself an instrument of war, and one of which the wise use is traditional in the history of our country's struggles. The strength and resiliency of British finance are tremendous, but not inexhaustible. If somebody does not exercise financial responsibility and allocate available resources between each of the Fighting Forces and between them and other Departments which are responsible for defensive measures, there is bound to be waste of precious financial strength and possibly failure to meet important defensive needs, because the Department which voices them is elbowed on one side by more powerful Departments. Therefore, unless the Minister possesses an important measure of financial responsibility, he cannot effectively co-ordinate the defensive measures which the Government are taking.
There is one unique feature about my Department,the Minister said.I have two Secretaries and three women clerks, and after 18 months I remain no larger than when I began. In that respect I am regarded by the Treasury as somewhat unique.No wonder the Minister is terrified at the scope of his responsibility if he contrasts it with the inadequacy of his means of discharging it. Every weekday £1,000,000 of the taxpayers' money is being spent on armaments. The Government have refused to adopt the recommendations of their own Royal Commission on the manufacture of and trade in 2901 arms, a decision against which we strongly protest, because we believe the country is behind us in our demand for the adoption of strong measures to eliminate excessive profits in armaments manufacture. This makes it the more urgent that the Minister should be armed with responsibility and power to stop the waste of taxpayers' money through profiteering, and secondly, to ensure that the money available is so allocated as to yield the highest return in defensive efficiency. If the Minister has no financial responsibility, it is time the House stepped in and appointed a committee to find out what is going on and to stop waste. For my own part, I feel confident that such a committee would report that the responsibility for the allocation of money spent on Defence ought to be attributed to the Minister, and that he ought to be given a staff adequate to discharge it.
In asking for this Vote to be put down, we certainly hope to elicit information from the Minister as to the progress which is being made with the Government's programme of rearmament and munitions supply, but we also have another object, and as I know that many hon. and right hon. Gentlemen desire to speak in the course of the Debate, it is to that other object that I intend to devote the remainder of my remarks. I want the House and the Government to give their attention to an aspect of National Defence which is too much neglected in our Debates, and it is what is called, in common parlance, the "home front." Many hon. Members have dealt with different aspects of this problem from time to time. I have raised previously many of the problems on which I shall be speaking this afternoon, but the main case which I want to put to the House to-day is that these problems were never so important from the standpoint of National Defence as they are now, that they need, like problems of Imperial strategy, to be treated as a whole, and that unless they are so treated, they will tend to be thrust into the background by the more dramatic interest of the problems of the Fighting Services and by the prestige and influence of the Fighting Departments.
We are apt to think of ourselves as an island, and it would be a profound mistake to suppose that we do not still enjoy many of the important strategic 2902 advantages of our island position; but it was the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence himself who said, in April:It is obviously upon England, considered geographically, that any impact of invasion would first and chiefly fall";and Lord Baldwin said, in February:Under any system of collective security, this country would be the first to stand the racket in the air.Moreover, while the last War in which we were engaged clearly showed that the general effect of modern weapons was to increase the advantages of the defence over the attack, it seems generally to be agreed that the lessons of more recent operations are that the advantages of the defence are still increasing and that war in the field tends more and more to take on the ghastly character of attrition. All of this suggests, first, that the ability to hold out physically, psychologically and economically will be the deciding factor in future wars, and secondly, that in considering the comparative importance of potential objectives, military or other, an enemy would be bound to consider whether attacks in the very earliest stage upon our important centres of communication, administration and industry would be likely to have decisive results upon our ability to defend ourselves or to help other States Members of the League against aggression across the seas.
It seems to me utterly paradoxical that a number of well-intentioned people who profess belief in the League of Nations and in collective security, and who desire peace, should oppose the adoption of such measures as the Government have framed for the defence of the country against air bombardment. Because such measures cannot give 100 per cent. security against air bombardment, they object to them being undertaken at all. Cambridge scientists are being roped into the campaign to declare that gas masks and gas-proof chambers are useless. Everybody who fought in the War must remember that much more primitive measures than those now contemplated gave no small degree of protection against gas which, on many parts of the front, was in a concentration as strong as any to which civilians to-day would be exposed. Surely, scientists who want to preserve peace and discourage aggression and such outrages as the bombing of civilians and the use of gas, would be better employed in helping to increase the effectiveness of defensive 2903 measures than in trying to prevent their adoption. These means of passive defence are precisely those which should receive the most ardent support from all who hate war and believe in the rule of law and collective security against aggression.
The piling up of offensive armaments by a single nation may well provoke an armaments race and may even precipitate the catastrophe of war. Measures of passive defence cannot have those results, because they menace nobody, and in so far as they are effective, they tend to avert the danger and tragedy of air bombardment by making it less likely to have any decisive effect on the course of a war. Nor is there any greater obstacle to the whole-hearted adoption of the principle of collective security in this country than the consciousness of our vulnerability to air bombardment. Everybody who hampers the Government in the adoption of measures of defence against air bombardment at home, is, consciously or unconsciously, encouraging militarists in other countries and weakening the League of Nations.
Guernica was an undefended town and there are some lessons for the people of this country to be drawn from its fate. It was not a military objective. A factory, producing war materials and two barracks which lay outside the town were untouched. It was far behind the lines. Yet Press correspondents have described the hideous, logical, rhythm of the attack upon it. First there were hand grenades and heavy bombs to stampede the population. Then there were machine-guns, shooting and terrorising the people as they fled and driving them underground. Then heavy incendiary bombs, either wrecking the houses over the heads of the people, or driving them out into the open, where the fighting machines came along again and machine-gunned them afresh. Perhaps the most appalling feature, looking back on it all, is that nobody—no Government at any rate—protested. Everybody accepted it. That is war. Now it is true that in our present stage of development there is no conceivable defensive measure by which we can prevent any single bomber from getting through to bomb an open town, but towns in the Spanish war zone which are even lightly defended, have escaped the worst consequences of air bombardment. We 2904 can and must prevent a foreign enemy from making a Guernica of any British town, and the more efficient our defence, the less likelihood there is of any such attack.
The Government have told us from time to time in the course of these Debates that they are depending mainly for the defence of Britain against foreign air attack upon the weight of the counterattack which they could bring to bear against the foreign enemy. The experience of the Spanish civil war tends to show that this is not a very effective form of defence. Moreover, as I pointed out during a similar Debate in March of last year, nowhere can our pilots find a target comparable in strategic sensitiveness with the south-eastern corner of England. Not if their machines could fly 2,000 miles without refuelling, could they find any comparable concentration of population, communications, markets, factories, and dockyards. They would have to fly a great deal further to find any target of importance in foreign countries than foreign pilots would have to fly in order to reach our incomparably more tempting target. Therefore, in so far as we rely for our defence upon counter-bombing, we must realise, not only that it seems ineffective in Spain but that geography imposes a heavy handicap on our pilots in any competition in destructiveness.
Let us then ask the Minister what is being done in regard to measures of passive defence. My principal submission is that the problem is all one, but let me take first the military aspect of these measures of passive defence. Who is responsible for that? I understand that the War Office is responsible for the guns and searchlights, the Air Ministry for the fighting aircraft and balloon barrage, and the Home Office for the protection of life and property, the maintenance of order, and the prevention of panic. Surely, military measures of anti-aircraft defence should not—in sound theory at any rate—be divided between the Air Ministry and the War Office. Yet, if I were to advance that proposition, no doubt I should be told that the Air Ministry, which obviously ought to have supreme control, has its hands full, and that it lacks the men, and especially the officers and non-commissioned officers to take over the guns and searchlights. I may even be told that the last thing the War 2905 Office wants to do is to keep its share of a responsibility which merely swells its Estimates with demands for anti-aircraft material when it would rather spend the money on strengthening the field Army. Such arguments only demonstrate what, I believe, to be unfortunately the case, that anti-aircraft defence is nobody's child, and that nobody is giving it the thought and energy which are needed, if it is to obtain its due share of money and priority in competition with the striking forces of the War Office and the Air Ministry.
Up to November of last year, only eight months ago, when rearmament had been in train for nearly two years, no anti-aircraft gun had been ordered more modern than the Vickers gun of 1918. Yet the German Army at last year's manoeuvres had at least three different types of anti-aircraft gun. We know how many squadrons of aeroplanes we have, though we do not know what proportion are in skeleton form. What we would like to know, if the Minister would tell us, is how many batteries of anti-aircaft guns we have; of what range and calibre they are; how many shall we have by March of next year; how quickly are they coming forward, and will the Minister be able to create a really effective system of defence round our great centres of population and of supply, with batteries of modern anti-aircraft guns, by next year?
We know that recruiting has been one difficulty for the Territorial formations which are to be responsible for manning the guns and searchlights, and yet the Secretary of State for War said last Saturday that applications to join the anti-aircraft defence were anticipating the delivery by manufacturers of the equipment and the provision of the necessary buildings. On the same day some experiments were being carried out by the regular Army section of the anti-aircraft defences. According to the newspapers, they yielded very interesting and, in the circumstances, extremely creditable results. What are the circumstances to which I refer? Well, the equipment, guns, and height-takers were still of the old type, and apparently there is no certainty that deliveries of the latest gun will have been even begun by the end of this year. I should like to know whether the Minister can give us any information on that point.
§ The Secretary of State for War (Mr. Hore-Belisha)
Will the right hon. Gentleman tell us from what he is quoting?
§ Sir A. Sinclair
I am quoting the Air correspondent of the "Sunday Times," who wrote an account of experiments conducted at Watchet on Saturday last. Can the Minister say when deliveries of these latest guns will begin and how quickly they will proceed? As for the Territorial anti-aircraft units at Weybourne, they are still practising, according to the same authority, with an old 3-inch gun designed for the Navy more than 30 years ago and afterwards adapted for anti-aircraft work in the last big War in which we were engaged. Again the provision of the balloon barrage appears to hang fire. We are told that we are buying a balloon which is less efficient than the balloon which the French have got. It appears that we are buying this balloon, which does not rise anything like as high as the French balloon, because it is considered adequate for our purpose. But is a balloon which can rise only, say, 10,000 feet, adequate for our purpose, when the French consider that it is necessary for them to have a balloon which can rise 20,000 feet? There is an obvious advantage on the side of the balloon which is able to rise to twice the height.
Then what is being done by the research committee into the problem of anti-aircraft defence? Three years ago, I supported the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Epping (Mr. Churchill) in his demand that research should be undertaken into the problem of defence from the ground against aircraft attack and as a result of the representations then made by various hon. Members a committee was appointed. What is that committee doing? How often does it meet? What results has it achieved? Is it empowered to offer prizes to inventors? How many large scale experiments has it conducted? What measure of priority does it obtain for its important experiments? Have we obtained devices such as the grid searchlight, the infra-red searchlight, the electromagnetic detector which are in use in other countries? What is the position in regard to guns, balloons, and anti-aircraft equipment generally? Unless the Minister cart give us some information different from that which we have been able to glean in other quarters, it would appear that anti-aircraft defence is the Cinderella 2907 of the fighting Services and Departments. It is my contention that all these activities ought to be stimulated and co-ordinated by a powerful authority constituted for the purpose.
Now defence measures of a civilian character are no less important than defence measures of a military character in strengthening our Home front, because our Home front is much more exposed to concentrated air attack than that of any other country, and they must be considered in relation to those military measures. There is, first, then the problem of what are known as air raid precautions. I have here a sheaf of the air raid precautions circulars which have been issued. They start on 9th July, 1935. That is two years ago, and the Government then declared that they would be neglecting their duty to the civil population if they failed to take these precautions. To-day His Majesty's Government are still at the stage of trying to pass on to the ratepayers the cost of defending our towns and cities against foreign attack. While this wrangling is going on they are still neglecting their duty to the civil population.
§ Mr. Speaker
I may tell the right hon. Gentleman that on the question of defence from air attack as regards the civil population, to which he is now beginning to refer, that comes under the Home Office and could not be taken to-day on the salary of the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence.
§ Sir A. Sinclair
I, of course, respect your Ruling, Sir—you would not expect that I would do otherwise—but if you would bear with me for a moment, I think I could develop the argument in such a way as to show that aspects of what are commonly called air raid precautions will inevitably require the help and reinforcement of the fighting services to make them effective, and that it is absolutely vital that these precautions should be co-ordinated with the work of the fighting Departments if we are to have any effective system of defence against air attack.
§ Mr. Amery
On the point of Order. Is it not the case that the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence is entitled to co-ordinate, and is indeed responsible for 2908 co-ordinating, all aspects of defence, and that, in so far as this matter of co-ordination does not deal with the details of the administration of the Department, we are entitled to refer, for instance, to the financial aspect of the question, as my right hon. Friend did just now, and similarly, to the adequacy of the arrangements for passive defence, including the discipline of those who, organised under the Home Office, are under the operational control of the Air Ministry in war? I hope, therefore, it may be possible for you, Sir, to give a fairly wide latitude as long as only the co-ordination aspect is in question.
§ Mr. Lees-Smith
Further to the point of Order. May I call your attention, Sir, to the fact that the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence was appointed primarily to be in general charge of the whole of the operations of the Committee of Imperial Defence and that that Committee does include in its scope both the Home Office and other Departments and, therefore, does come for co-ordination purposes within the particular duties that the House has asked him to perform?
§ Mr. Speaker
As far as I understand it, the duties of the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence are not the same as what would be the duties of a Minister of Defence. They are two different things, and I do not think that the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence could be held responsible for what is done by a body like the Committee of Imperial Defence.
§ Wing-Commander James
Further to the point of Order. May I quote from a speech made by a Secretary of State in another place on 27th February, 1936, forecasting the duties that would be imposed on the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence then to be appointed? He said this:Finally, it will be his duty, in the light of that experience, to make the Prime Minister any recommendations which seem to him wise for improving the organisation and efficiency of the Committee of Imperial Defence.I submit that that supports the contention of the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Keighley (Mr. Lees-Smith).
§ Mr. Amery
Again on the point of Order. May I respectfully draw your attention to the duties of the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence as laid down in the White Paper, namely: 2909the general day-to-day supervision and control of the whole organisation and activity of the Committee of Imperial Defence … consultation with the Prime Minister or other Ministers or Committees … and to make such recommendations as he thinks necessary for improving the organisation of the Committee of Imperial Defence.I submit that the whole problem covered by the work of the Committee of Imperial Defence falls within the duties of co-ordination of the Minister and, therefore, in so far as that co-ordination is concerned, it ought to be possible, at any rate, to touch upon the functions of all the Departments which play a part in defence.
§ Mr. Churchill
Further to the point of Order. May I submit to you, Sir, that apart from the Prime Minister, whose duties it was desired to lighten when the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence was appointed, the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence is the sole Minister who can speak on defence matters which involve one or more of the Departments concerned? May that also be taken into consideration in your Ruling, Sir?
§ Mr. Speaker
The subject for me to give a Ruling on is getting rather wider than the one on which I pulled up the right hon. Member for Caithness and Sutherland (Sir A. Sinclair). I was only at the moment trying to prevent the discussion wandering into a discussion on the civil side of the question, as regards the protection of civilians, gas masks, underground shelters, and so forth. I do not want that to monopolise the Debate, because I do not believe that that is really the responsibility of the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence, but perhaps he will help me to decide.
§ The Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence (Sir T. Inskip)
Undoubtedly the measures known as passive measures of air defence are now, and have been for some time past, discharged by my right hon. Friend the Home Secretary, and the Home Office Vote would bear a sum for the payment of the expenses of the provision of the apparatus which is necessary, for the personnel of air-raid wardens, and so on, for passive measures. If I may respectfully say so, I recognise that any relation which the passive measures may have to the active measures, or to the general question of the allocation of expense, might fall within, and would fall within, my consideration from time to 2910 time. If I may make one respectful suggestion, it is that the right hon. Member for Caithness (Sir A. Sinclair) should not be permitted in this Debate to enter into the details as to whether, for instance, the proper number of gas masks, of bombproof shelters, or of air-raid wardens were provided, because these are matters on which I should be bound to refer to my right hon. Friend the Home Secretary.
§ Sir A. Sinclair
If, Sir, you would allow the Debate to proceed on those lines which the Minister suggests, that would amply meet my proposal. I want, if you will allow me, to refer to bomb-proof shelters and things of that kind, but not in detail and not as to the numbers and where they are to be put. I realise that that is the responsibility of the Home Secretary, but the co-ordination of such measures so as to reinforce and strengthen the home front does seem to me to come within the purview of the right hon. Gentleman the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence, as Deputy-Chairman of the Committee of Imperial Defence. I would like to be able to deal with those aspects of the matter.
§ Sir T. Inskip
On the point of Order. Perhaps I may say one other word. The co-ordination of these measures undoubtedly comes within my duties, as I understand them, but that does not mean that I devise measures. The responsibility for saying whether bomb-proof shelters are necessary, or how many of them are necessary, is the responsibility of the Home Secretary, and if and when he makes proposals which are to be considered by the Cabinet, inasmuch as they must be brought in relation with other aspects of defence, the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence comes into the picture. It is not for me to devise the measures that are necessary, but only to co-ordinate them when measures have been considered and to see how far they will fall in with the general scheme.
§ Mr. Churchill
On that point of Order. Do I understand my right hon. Friend to limit his functions entirely to the co-ordination of measures, and to exclude altogether from his purview the question whether he considers them by themselves useful or practicable measures?
§ Mr. Speaker
If the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Caithness likes to pursue that subject to the extent that the 2911 right hon. Gentleman the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence has suggested to him, he is at liberty to do so, but he will see the difficulty. If he raises a question and the Minister has to say, "I am afraid I am not responsible," that is unsatisfactory, and I do not want that to occur.
§ Sir A. Sinclair
I will try to do that and, of course, Sir, I shall submit myself to any further Ruling you may have to give, but at the same time I think it is in the public interest that we should have this opportunity of considering this vitally important aspect of national defence, and that it would be unfortunate if it went out from this House that there was no Minister who was willing to accept the responsibility for the co-ordination of these measures of passive defence with the more active measures of a military nature. I was remarking that for two years no action has been taken on these air-raid precautions except as regards anti-gas courses and ambulance services, but as regards bomb-proof shelters, depots, casualty-clearing stations, transport facilities, the protection of telephone exchanges, fire stations, and centres of administration and communication, all being matters which will be of vital importance to the effective prosecution of any defensive campaign—on all these lines nothing is being done in this country, although in foreign countries, as those of us who have visited them know, there is a great deal of activity on these questions.
I would ask the right hon. Gentleman whether he will tell us what plans are being made on these lines. For example, has the military aspect of the location of industry been studied and the appropriate plans made, or is the Department waiting until the Royal Commission reports in perhaps two or three years' time? In the meantime, is the Minister sure that there are not sub-contractors of sub-contractors manufacturing small but indispensable and extremely complicated parts of munitions or chemical products, even in the most dangerous zones round London and between London and the East Coast? Is the Royal Commission being asked for an interim report on the war aspects of the problem, or are the Government taking action independent of the Royal Commission? I would suggest to the right hon. Gentleman in this respect that the Government ought to announce forthwith that 2912 there will be no State insurance against or compensation for destruction by air attack of any new place of employment established in certain vulnerable areas.
Then I would ask whether any effort has been made to classify in the danger zones men and women according to their occupations, providing gas and bombproof shelters for those whose occupation makes their presence in those zones necessary and making provision for evacuating the remainder? Have the Government got plans for improving the exits from London and other cities, so as to facilitate evacuation, and for creating and provisioning camps and for providing transport to the camps and health and sanitary equipment, and for policing the camps and the cities and the communications between them? Has the Minister considered whether electrical power stations which are being replaced by the grid should not be kept up on a care-and-maintenance basis? Is anything being done with regard to the duplication of fire-fighting equipment and water supplies? Are measures being planned for making tube railways and tunnels, like the Mersey Tunnel, gas proof? Are plans being made for strengthening our medical and nursing services in times of emergency, and with this in view will the Government persuade the Home Office not to discourage men and women refugees with medical and nursing qualifications from settling in this country? What provision is being made to supply the large number of trained men who may be required to superintend the evacuation of citizens, to police communications and vital points, to police, organise, and provision camps, to repair damage by bombs, and to establish emergency services of transport, health, sanitation and food? All these services will require skilled, specially trained, and disciplined men. Are they being recruited, organised, and trained, and has the possibility been envisaged that much of this work may have to be thrown upon the Territorial or even the Regular Army? If so, are they being trained for it?
A year ago, in a similar debate on the same Estimate, I dwelt upon the importance of the transport problem. Two-thirds of our imports enter from the east, and one-third from the west. I asked then, and I would ask again, what provision is being made for switching 2913 over from east to west? Something is being done to improve communications by road, but surely it is inadequate, especially as regards exits from our big cities? Nothing, however, according to my information, is being done to organise the transport industry against an emergency. No doubt the fighting departments have earmarked the lorries they would require. Has a census been taken of lorries for civilian purposes, for food distribution, evacuation and similar needs and have the lorries been classified into different categories so as to prevent vehicles being assigned to duties for which they are structurally unsuitable? Has transport been organised so that there is a staff to handle it in the different areas of the country. Has the importance of fuel storage for civilian as well as for military purposes been considered?
There remains the vitally important question of food supply. I feel dispensed from the necessity of dealing with it because I know that my hon. Friend the Member for Oxford University (Sir A. Salter) will speak on it with unequalled authority. I would only say this: In the last War we held unchallenged supremacy on the surface of the ocean, yet we were reduced at one moment to a few weeks' supply of food and there was a real and definite danger of starvation. Now to the submarine is added the air peril to our merchant shipping in the narrow seas, and not only our merchant ships, but also our docks and storehouses will be open to attack. This is a problem which involves agriculture, transport, food storage and anti-aircraft defence, and it cannot be satisfactorily solved by a mere branch of one public Department like the new food plans Department of the Board of Trade.
Now these are the dangers to which our people would be exposed in the horrible event of war. These are the targets which would be open to attack—docks, harbours, big granaries, centres of communication and administration and manufacture, especially, of course, armament manufacture. There is the still more gruesome possibility, following the Abyssinian and Spanish precedents, of the deliberate use of terrorism against the civil population. There is no ground here for panic. Not all of these objectives would be attacked, but the choice of objectives will not be ours but the enemy's and the best way of averting the danger is to prepare against it not only by counter menace 2914 which may not be effective, but by non-menacing measures of defence which will not only reduce the temptation to attack, but will offer no provocation. Protests and resolutions did not save the primitively armed Abyssinian tribes, nor the Basques, and they will not save our people from the disciples of Machiavelli. It is our business to prove to them that the bombardment of our towns and cities would be, if I may paraphrase Talleyrand, worse than an outrage; it would be a mistake.
I have asked the Minister a great many questions this afternoon, more than I can expect him to answer at the end of this Debate; yet I believe they are all questions which are exercising the minds of men and women in responsible positions to-day. I hope they will receive attention and that the right hon. Gentleman will be able to answer some of them. I would, however, endeavour to sum them up in two main questions. First, immersed as we know His Majesty's Government are in the task of increasing the striking power of Britain's armaments, do they realise that military opinion is tending to attach increasing importance to the home front? In his last book, "Europe in Arms," Captain Liddell Hart says:The vulnerability of the target counts for at least as much as the power of the weapon, and possibly counts for more.Air Commodore Charlton, in the "United Services Review" last month, says:Even immense air superiority cannot alter a geographical situation.He goes on to say:We are bound to come off second best in any air war based on parity.Have we yet attained parity? The second question is, if the Government accept the importance of measures for strengthening the home front, will they not realise that the Departments responsible will never be able either to frame them or to carry them out in competition with the older services if they are tackled piecemeal? If co-ordination is needed for the fighting Services, it is needed no less in the measures of passive defence If the vulnerability of the target counts for at least as much as, if not more than, the power of the weapon, we need the concentration of the best available brains on the problem of vulnerability. We need, therefore, not only a military general staff, but also an economic general staff. In the case of Achilles it was his 2915 heel that was vulnerable. In the case of the British Empire, the most exposed and vulnerable part of the body is the heart. The problem needs the exercise of foresight, organised thought and intensive study. I would, therefore, urge the Minister to constitute under his control a general staff which will carry weight and exercise authority in the councils of the Government, and will frame and carry out measures which will give us an effective and formidable system of defence on the home front.
§ 5.7 p.m.
§ Mr. Lees-Smith
It is a fairly long interval since we last had a Debate on the Department of the right hon. Gentleman, and the House is under an obligation to the right hon. Gentleman the Leader of the Liberal party for giving us the opportunity of discussing this subject. The right hon. Gentleman at the beginning of his speech raised the whole issue of the conception which the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence takes of his office. It is clear now that the Minister regards his duty as mainly that of generally supervising the work of the Committee of Imperial Defence and of generally easing its operations. He does not, however, regard himself as having any technical authority, and he does not provide himself with any special mechanism of his own. The Minister has defended his conception of his office in this House and in public by pointing to the immense results which have been attained in the last year, or rather less. Of course, very great results have been attained, but I am not sure that very much the same results might not have been attained without the actual presence of the Minister at all. I am not sure how far he with his conception of his office is responsible for the results, because there was a good deal of co-ordination in the Committee of Imperial Defence before. It had its Chief of Staffs Committee and the Joint Planning Committee, on both of which there were representatives of the Services, and to that extent there was co-ordination in certain directions.
I would have expected, apart from any special Minister being appointed, that with this immense sense of urgency which we have had behind us during the last few months, and with this unlimited sum 2916 of money at the disposal of the Service Departments, there would have been a great elaboration of results and an intensification of activity along the most obvious and well established lines. I have listened to the Debates which led up to the creation of the office of the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence. Those Debates assumed that he was to be appointed with a rather different purpose. The House felt there were certain great intellectual problems in the relationships between the three Services—what I may call problems of doctrine—and that those problems were not being dealt with by any machinery which existed up to that moment. If we judge the Minister by that test, by what I may call the test of the higher efficiency, I do not think that even he would attempt to make any reply. This particular aspect of the problem has not been dealt with, and I do not believe that there is any one man who can deal with that class of problem and also deal with the particular aspect of co-ordination to which the right hon. Gentleman has devoted his attention.
§ Mr. Lees-Smith
Yes, certainly; this is an introduction to what I am going to say. It is for that reason that I support the proposal of the right hon. Gentleman who leads the Liberal party that there should be a special organisation, with a Minister under the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence, who would relieve him of sufficient of his work to enable him to devote himself to one or the other of these problems. The Minister has asked me to explain, and I will give one or two examples. This is not a matter of theory. A Service Department which is acting on a wrong doctrine is like a man with a wrong idea in his head; everything will go wrong. As an example of what I might call perverted doctrine, I would say that for many years the Air Ministry presumed that attack in the air was so overwhelmingly superior to the defence that there was no effective answer to it. That was the doctrine at the Air Ministry; so much so that they made the Prime Minister get up to explain the doctrine from that Box. The Prime Minister told the public that the bomber would always get through. I thought at the time that that was one of the most misleading and mischievous statements—
§ Mr. Lees-Smith
The Prime Minister, I know, modified the statement. I was in the House when he modified it, in response to the kind of criticism that has been made in this Debate. The experience of the last War undoubtedly was that the bomber did get through, but got through at such cost and sacrifice that it ceased to come. During the late War no bomber came over London in the last six months. I think this defeatist view accounts for a good many of the deficiencies to which the right hon. Gentleman has called attention in his speech. I do not think that anyone who looks at the development of air warfare in the last few years can deny that our progress in machines, in bombers, has been far in advance of our progress in anti-aircraft gunnery, searchlights or sound locators. I should say that has been admitted over and over again in this House. It is still the position. If that idea had not been prevalent I do not believe we should still have a situation in which we are producing fighting machines, defenders against air attack, which are almost miracles of rapidity and efficiency, while at the same time the manning of the searchlights, without which at night the machines are absolutely blind, is only 30 per cent. up to establishment, and the condition of the searchlights is such as has been described by the right hon. Gentleman. Obviously defence has been neglected in comparison with attack.
The question whether defence can or cannot conquer attack is vital to the whole strategic position of the country. Before the coming of the aeroplane we were at an advantage by comparison with nearby countries. Since the coming of the aeroplane we have been at a disadvantage, and that will be so as long as the attack is superior to the defence. If once the defence can overcome the attack this advantage should disappear and we should be back in the comparative security we enjoyed before air warfare came on the scene. That is why it has been a profound mistake, a mistake in doctrine leading to disaster in practice, that for all these years the development of defence has lagged behind the development of attack. We could have an interesting discussion on this subject, but it appears to me that now 2918 the defence is rather catching up with the attack. Statements have been made in the last year or two such as certainly would not have been made before. For instance, the right hon. Gentleman himself has reported that we are now satisfied that the capital ship can hold its own against air attack. That, surely, is an example of the way in which defence is catching up attack—if that is true. I remember the last First Lord of the Admiralty speaking with great confidence of the power to defend naval bases from air attack. A naval base the size of Portsmouth is half the size of London, and if we can defend such a considerable naval base we can defend a town. There is clearly a great change from the ideas which prevailed a couple of years ago.
The right hon. Gentleman who leads the Liberal party has quoted what has been happening in Madrid. There is in the "Daily Telegraph" an interesting appreciation from a Germany authority of the lessons of air warfare in Spain. He states that, as a result of their own experience, they find that from only a few hundred yards up a target of less than 500 yards in length and 150 yards in breadth can be hit only by chance. That is a target the size of these Parliament buildings. That is a very different picture from what used to be drawn a couple of years ago. Then the right hon. Gentleman who leads the Liberal party quoted the experience in the camps at Watchet and at Weybourne, which has been described in the "Sunday Times" of last Sunday by its Air Correspondent who, I think it will be admitted, is usually very well informed. He says that at both those camps, one a regular camp and the other a Territorial camp, which were bombarded—apparently in the daytime—anti-aircraft guns scored one hit in 16. That is a statement which would have been incredible a year or two ago.
Therefore in all these ways the position of air defence is far more comfortable than the Air Ministry gave us to believe until fairly lately, and it indicates that there has been in the past a lack of balance in the consideration given to this subject. I should imagine that the lack of balance still exists. I have here the current number of "Flight," with a very penetrating appreciation of the recent 2919 combined exercises round Portsmouth. While it is on the whole appreciative of the Services it does call the attention of the Committee of Imperial Defence to the fact that anti-aircraft searchlights and anti-aircraft equipment are not up to the Nth. We shall pay terribly in the first few days of a war. That certainly suggests that this is a subject to which the Committee of Imperial Defence should give its attention. I put these points of doctrine because we are dealing now with a Department which is a Department of thinking, distinct from the work of day-to-day organisation in a Service Department, but I am myself convinced that it cannot give to these questions the concentrated attention which they require so long as it is cluttered up with work in connection with day-to-day details of the other side of the work which the right hon. Gentleman has had charged upon him.
The Leader of the Liberal party raised also the question of the system by which, while the fighting aeroplane in the air, such as defends London, for example, is under the Air Ministry, the searchlight and the anti-aircraft battery on which it depends are under the War Office. The right hon. Gentleman will know that I have raised this question two or three times in previous Debates, and I am not going to raise it again now, because I am pretty well convinced that the answer which he gives regarding the dispute over the Fleet Air Arm will give the answer also to this question and one or two other questions in which the Army is involved. He has said in reply to me that the Air Ministry are not making this claim. Of course they are not making this claim. If they did they would have to give up their claim with regard to the Fleet Air Arm. If he decides against the Air Ministry on the Fleet Air Arm he will find that the very doctrine which leads him to decide that way will compel him to give the Air Ministry the control of its own searchlights and anti-aircraft batteries, and he will find that the demand which is made by Sir Edmund Ironside that the Army shall control its own Army co-operation squadrons will have to be conceded.
Before I leave the question of the air I should like to raise one point which has not been mentioned before but which has caused me some discomfort of mind. I 2920 refer to the future career of those in the Services, and especially in the Air Service. In ordinary times, three or four years ago, the Air Ministry had, I suppose, to find positions for about a couple of hundred short-service officers, and did so. When I was at an Air Force station not long ago I found myself surrounded by hundreds of young men of 19 or 20 years of age, the special entry men, who in four years will all be out of a job. I asked "What is going to happen to all these young men?" and the answer was "I suppose they will be on the Poor Law."
§ Mr. Deputy-Speaker (Captain Bourne)
The right hon. Member is on a subject which cannot be debated now because it is a question for the Air Ministry Estimates.
§ Mr. Lees-Smith
Then I will leave that for another occasion. I will come to another subject on which I asked the right hon. Gentleman a question in the last Debate, and I should like to know what has since taken place. We have had discussions about the difficulty there is in obtaining recruits for the Army and the ease with which we obtain recruits for the Air Force and the Navy. I sometimes go down to Deal, where there are Royal Marine Barracks. Those barracks are 150 years old and have none of the amenities which the War Office has lately provided in its barracks, and yet the Marines never have the slightest difficulty in getting all the recruits they want. The reason for that is the simple one that the Marines are a long-service force. That is the whole difference between the Army on the one side and the Navy and the Air Force on the other. The mothers of this country are not going to allow their boys to go into a service which turns them out without any work at the age of 23 or 24. I doubt whether any of us would allow our boys to go into occupations of that sort.
I bring this subject up for its own sake, and not because the question will be settled by the decision of another issue to which reference has already been made. That issue is, what is to happen to the Cardwell system? I shall not enter into the arguments, but undoubtedly this House has given its opinion. I have never heard a speech in favour of its continuance in the present form, yet there has been no particular response from the Departments concerned. I notice that a 2921 committee is sitting, and my criticism of that committee is the same as my criticism of the Committee of Imperial Defence. I have always felt that the right hon. Gentleman ought to provide himself with his own staff and that that staff ought to contain a number of civilian minds. That is a matter to which I wish to call attention. It may be true that the Imperial Defence College is producing a number of active, most able and vigorous young officers with the most progressive minds, and that if we knew them we should be reassured. I admit that the modern Army or Naval officer is, I imagine, a great deal more technically efficient than his father or his grandfather, but that is true of the whole of the present generation. They pass now at 16, examinations which some of us could pass only at 19 or 20. That is the general case. If there are to be great changes I do not believe you will get them from committees or bodies consisting of purely Service minds.
It is perhaps wisest to state my opinion that, in spite of the undoubted advance of the young officer over the previous generation, if difficult intellectual problems—the Cardwell system involves difficult intellectual problems—have to be faced, I do not believe that you will get in the Services minds of the same capacity to solve them as you would get in civilian minds in comparable occupations. The Army deliberately insists upon drawing its officers from a very narrow circle, and the result is that it does not draw upon that same general area of competence as do the other Services. The Army's level of competence is not great. The Services, the Army in particular, are occupations in which you do not get frequent criticism. On the whole, the opinion of any man is rather better than the opinion of any other man one step lower in grade. They are not subjected to the criticism which we have to endure in this House every day, or the criticism which the right hon. Gentleman has to endure. I am sure that those occupations in which men live their lives subject to continual criticism result in the end in a higher standard. The great reforms, particularly m the Army, have been carried through m the past by civilian minds, usually in the teeth of military opinion. That is the lesson which I think the right hon. Gentleman should draw, and I should 2922 like him to furnish himself with minds of the type which I have just described.
§ 5.35 p.m.
§ Mr. Churchill
I was very glad that the House so generally welcomed the Ruling of the Chair in favour of giving a broad latitude to a Debate upon the salary of the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence. Now that there are three Arms and the civilian Departments are so closely involved in Defence, whether they deal with food or with the control of the civil population, it is especially important that there should be several occasions in the course of the year when the House can deal with the problem of Defence in its general and in its national aspects. Of course, it would be an obvious abuse of such a valuable opportunity if topics were debated in a way which would be much better suited to the special Votes of the various Departments concerned, and would be a great waste of so valuable an opportunity as is presented when the Minister comes forward and is able to speak with equal freedom on the whole of the three Services and on their inter-relations, as well as the general Defence problem affecting the civilian Departments.
These are great responsibilities to fall upon my right hon. Friend, and his two private secretaries and three lady typists—very serious and grave responsibilities. I admire very much the phlegm and the physique which have enabled him to support them with so much composure and such an air of well-being. Still responsibilities are very often brought home to people when there are failures, and very often those failures are apparent only when peace-time policies come into contact with realities. I remember a story of Marshal Joffre who, after the War was over, was asked by a lady: "Now, tell me, Marshal, who was really responsible for winning the battle of the Marne? "The Marshal said, "Madam, that is a mystery which will never be solved, but I can tell you who would have been responsible for losing it, supposing it had been lost." I do not repeat that tale in any way to strike a knell which might echo in the ears of my right hon. Friend, but it is undoubtedly the fact that the House and the country look to him and to his office to give a general review of all questions of national Defence, and to present that view as the deputy of the 2923 Prime Minister and with the authority of the Government as a whole. I feel, like the spokesman of the Opposition, that we are all indebted to the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Caithness (Sir A. Sinclair) for enabling this Debate to take place. He has facilities, as the head of an organised entity, for bringing topics before the House of Commons which is certainly denied to any one on this side of the House except a Minister. Therefore we are all the more grateful to him when he gives us a day for the discussion of these extremely intricate and important questions, upon which modern thought is unhappily more and more concentrating.
Upon this general question of passive defence and the relative power of defence and attack in the air, I would venture to express the hope that, important as it is, it would not be possible to find security merely by the development of passive defence. You cannot roof the world in, and you cannot provide protection everywhere. You must rely, in the first place, upon the deterrent of counter measures and upon the deterrent of large associations of nations which, if they are properly armed, will restrain an aggressor from a violent outrage from the air. You must rely upon the active function, but it is true that, all other things being equal, the nation which has good arrangements for dealing with the civil population under air attack will have a considerable advantage over the nation which has very small or poor arrangements for that purpose.
I will venture to say, although it may not be a very popular thing to say, that I hope the Government, whose resources are so very meagre and slender and inadequate to the purpose in hand, will concentrate those resources first of all upon protecting the vital points of our warmaking capacity, our harbours, feeding points, power stations, munition factories and mobilisation centres, and so forth. It is only after those have been adequately provided for that the much larger and, in some ways, insoluble problem, under present conditions, of protecting the civilian population, can arise. I say "insoluble under present conditions," because wonderful ideas are alive in the field of scientific research. If one could be sure that 10, or perhaps eight, or even seven years of peace lay before the world, 2924 I would hazard the opinion which I have indicated before, that the ground will master the air, and that the problem of the marauding aeroplane, slaughtering indiscriminately the civilian population, not merely attacking focal points, but seeking to blackmail nations out of their liberties by an act of mass terrorism, that horrible apparition which has been reserved for our age to see, will have passed away as a menace, from the civilised world.
Unhappily, those six, seven, eight or nine years are years of great anxiety and crisis for the world, and it may well be that the civilisation of the future and the continuation of our civilisation may depend upon whether or not peace can be maintained until the power of defending all communities from these indiscriminate and piratical attacks against the civilian population has been fully regained. Why, about 300 years ago, when a man was studying aviation and trying to make a flying machine—he was a priest—he abandoned those studies because, he said, "if ever this succeeds there is no city in any country which would not be an object of horrible assaults." What was regarded with horror in the Middle Ages, and certainly in the last 300 years, is now accepted as an arid commonplace by all the polite staff officers, and even by the politicians and philosophers of civilised Europe at the present time. We have certainly discovered this great secret of the air at a time when the human race has shown that its virtues do not unfit it to receive such a splendid gift.
My right hon. Friend the Member for Caithness—we are on the same side today, and, therefore, I may depart from the Parliamentary convention and call him my right hon. Friend—asked, in the vary careful speech that he made, a large number of questions of the Minister for Co-ordination of Defence, and I hope that, even though those questions cannot be answered in debate, my right hon. Friend the Minister will go through them in the Report with his pencil and note all the different specific points which have been raised. I know what answer he is going to give to all of them. He is going to say that all these matters have been very carefully studied, that he has examined them all. I have not the slightest doubt that they have all been examined, but I must point out that there is all the difference in the world between studying 2925 a question, having a plan on paper or a report of a committee in a pigeonhole, and having any practical measures which will enable that plan to be put into operation in an emergency. There is a gulf between the two. Take the question of moving the population, or of opening the western ports for the feeding of this island. Plans may be made for that, but, unless you have a large number of people marked down in the different districts, with the full booklet of their duties, trained in them, rehearsed in them, each of them on the moment able to go to his place with an adequate staff of subordinates around him, so that the whole matter becomes vital and concrete, and passes out of theory into life and action—unless you have that, your paper scheme will never be any shield or protection, or at least, in all probability, not until after the emergency against which it is designed has either passed away or the attack has achieved its fell purpose.
I do not propose to ask the Minister to tell us his scheme for dealing with the vexed problem of the Fleet Air Arm, because I understand that he has already made his plans and presented them to the Cabinet, and that it is not until Thursday next that he hopes to be in a position to make a statement. I trust, however, that he will be in a position to make a statement on Thursday next. It is really distressing that this matter should have flapped in the wind for so long. It is 18 months since it became a very prominent question in the House; it is 12 months, I remember, since I made upon it almost exactly the same speech that I am making now. Now we have come to a period of great and real emergency and of immense preparations, and there ought to be a decision. Four months ago my right hon. Friend, who had already been studying this matter for a long time, said he would set to work to give a decision. Now he has given a decision. It will be discreditable—I use that word deliberately—if the Government show themselves incapable of reaching a coherent decision on a matter of this kind after all this time, holding up the whole spirit and efficiency of these two Services in one very important aspect. I know that there may be an equipoise of argument, and an equipoise of influential people, but if you are not able to come to a decision and enforce your will and have it obeyed on one side 2926 or the other here, you may well find it very difficult to enforce your will on a well armed enemy, supposing, which God forfend, you should ever be called upon to defend us against one.
Neither will I attempt to ask any question about the general problem of air defence or of the Air Service. I really do not feel, though I have spoken about it in the past, that I should like to discuss the Air Service except in a secret session, and, as that is not granted, I shall certainly not attempt at persent to enter upon a technical examination of that subject, quite apart from the fact that, if I went too far into it, you, Mr. Deputy-Speaker, would very rightly correct me. But I would venture to say this, which is general and applies to all the Departments equally, and to the Minister who co-ordinates them. I am astounded at the optimism and complacency with which the position of our defence is now written and spoken of from one end of the country to another. I cannot see the slightest ground for the kind of statements which I notice in the newspapers. I read very carefully the statements made by Ministers on this matter, and I am glad to be able to confess that in most cases they seem to me, literally at any rate, to have a perfectly recognisable contact with truth. But the danger is that, while the statements made by Ministers are very carefully selected, and very often safeguarded by covering phrases and refinements which escape the public reports, a much broader effect is presented in the headlines of the newspapers, and is definitely misleading. For instance, the other day my right hon. Friend made a statement in which he indicated—I am not attempting to quote him verbatim—that in one large sphere of his production he had reached the peak of production, that the factories were proceeding at their full limits in accordance with the war programme—
§ Mr. Churchill
My right hon. Friend is quite right to state his case at a minimum, but, if he said anything like that, I must point out that we do not know what is the standard at which he is aiming. We are not being told what are the forces which are being prepared, or the scale, except only in respect of the air programme, and, consequently, as we do not 2927 know what is the goal, or what is the prescribed speed and what are the stages by which we are to reach that goal, we naturally cannot judge at all whether the progress is satisfactory or not. It is no doubt true that we are, as I think my right hon. Friend did say, getting stronger every day. That may be the cause of his buoyancy, of his Coué-ism. He is able to rise in the morning and say:On every day, in every way, I get better and better.The question is, how much? In these matters quantity counts enormously, and, of course, everything is relative. While my right hon. Friend is marshalling his forces and increasing ours, the tremendous work of armament is proceeding abroad. We have forgotten all about that. I think it was 12 months ago that I pointed out that German was spending at the rate of £1,000,000,000 a year. All that is going on. Here and there there may be some impediment through lack of raw materials, but the whole process is continuing. The great hammers, as General Goering has said, are descending ceaselessly; mountains of ammunition and machine guns and cannon of every kind are flowing out. Ever larger armies are being raised, and behind those armies stand enormous martial populations, all under discipline, all armed, but not yet formed into regular organised units. Pray do not let us forget that, while we ourselves are making great exertions, the whole vast process of Continental rearmament is still at its fullest possible compass.
I read in the papers the other day that my right hon. Friend the Prime Minister had stated that our Air Force was comparable with any other Air Force. There was a tremendous headline. I rubbed my eyes at such a statement. But, when I came to look at what my right hon. Friend had actually said, I saw how carefully he had guarded himself, and that before this phrase there were two other phrases—in the quality of its machines and of its pilots our Air Force was comparable with any other Air Force. That is a very different statement. It is true that there is the factor of numbers, and, of course, numbers do count in the horrid sphere of force. All this I say in order to emphasise the necessity that Ministers should not in any way encourage newspapers to put a gloss upon their statements—in fact they should discourage 2928 them from putting a gloss upon their statements, which, read in their literal text, may possibly be justified.
I myself have been a sufferer recently from the love of newspapers for broad effects. [An HON. MEMBER: "All your life."] I do not at all dislike the idea of broad effects, but erroneous effects are to be deprecated. The House will remember that last week I raised the question of the guns said to have been mounted at Gibraltar. I dare say it will be within the recollection of the House that I put the whole matter interrogatively, asking, is it true that there are guns there which could do this? And I said that, if there were guns in these positions, then the consequences would be so-and-so. But the "if" and the interrogative character were swept away, and what I have seen is a statement that I declared that there were guns in these positions which could do these things. I never said that. I want, however, to know a little more about the position there, and about those guns. We had a reply from the Under-Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, but the hour was late and the Noble Lord was not able to give any reasonable account of the position. We ask what guns are there; where are they; where did they come from; what is their purpose; can they in fact command the harbour; can they in fact—
§ Mr. Deputy-Speaker
I do not see how the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence can possibly answer these questions.
§ Mr. Churchill
I may point out that the Service Minister could answer them, because in the previous Debate an answer was given by the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs on information supplied to him by the Service Department, and, as I understand it, although it is not the direct responsibility of the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence, he is, as it were, the conduit through which the information would naturally reach the House, and more than one Service is concerned. The Army is concerned, the Air Force is concerned, and he is the only Minister to whom we can turn unless we were to trouble the Prime Minister, and, after all, we do not wish to throw a technical burden upon him. The Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence is the only Minister who can speak upon that subject, and I understood from my right 2929 hon. Friend that he would give us some information upon it. Therefore, without in the slightest degree going against your Ruling, I would in the most general terms, dealing entirely with the general aspect of the Mediterranean, say, if there is any idea that the mounting of guns to dominate or cover the Straits of Gibraltar is not a matter of first consequence to us, that it is. You could hardly have anything of greater importance to the British State and to the general problem of British Imperial defence. I should like to know whether these guns are primary or secondary guns. I would not press the Minister to go into the exact calibres and ranges and that sort of thing, but we want to know whether in fact very heavy cannon have been mounted, larger than are required for the exigencies of the Spanish war, upon both sides of this narrow strip of water between Europe and Africa which gives us our entry into the Mediterranean. We ought to know about this, and I trust we shall be given some more precise information than was imparted by the Under-Secretary the other night.
But it does not stand alone. There is the general question of our position, which I am sure the Committee of Imperial Defence must often have studied under the right hon. Gentleman's chairmanship—the general question of what is happening in the Mediterranean. It is not only Ceuta and Algeciras Bay. There are the Balearic Islands; there are the conditions that are being established at Malta, placing the whole question of the defence of that island in a new light. There is the small rock of Pantellaria which is being fortified and made a powerful air base—
§ Mr. Speaker
The right hon. Gentleman is now discussing the whole question of naval and military policy, which is entirely outside the province of the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence.
§ Mr. Churchill
I really do not know to what Minister I should address myself or to what Minister the House is to look upon a question which involves the Navy, the Army and the Air in equal proportions and which also affects the great question of the food supplies which hitherto we have drawn through the Mediterranean. But, naturally, in view of what you say, Sir, I shall not persist in the matter, save by way of illustration.
2930 I merely wish to say that these guns at the mouth of the Mediterranean cannot be considered apart from the whole process of fortification that is going on right to the Eastern end of Leros and Rhodes, right down the Red Sea at Massowah, the whole of this creating day by day and month by month a position that we have never had to face before. I want to know what is the purpose of all this. I feel that the House of Commons and His Majesty's Government should address themselves to these matters with the greatest possible earnestness. We have not only interests of a vital character in the Mediterranean. We have friendly Powers to whom we are bound in obligations which are precious to us in the Mediterranean—Yugoslavia, Greece and Turkey, Powers of the greatest consequence to us. I trust that we may hear from the Government some further statement on the facts, and also what they propose to do in relation to those facts while time remains.
§ 6.4 p.m.
§ Sir Arthur Salter
I think the Debate has shown quite clearly that the task of the Minister in co-ordinating the Fighting Services on the one hand with civilian measures on the other is quite as important as his task in securing co-ordination between the Fighting Services themselves. I wish to speak of one particular civilian measure which is interlocked both with naval protection, air protection and with the problem of internal transport. I refer to the scheme for dispersed inland storage of essential foodstuffs. This, of course, is only one example of the measures for the protection of the home front, but it is, I believe, of particular importance. I am emboldened to speak of it to-day partly because of the experience I had during the War, and partly because the Minister, in referring to this proposal, associated it with my name. In the first place, may I say as clearly as possible that I am not advocating this proposal as in any way an alternative to naval strength. I recognise perfectly that, if an enemy is in a position to blockade us, neither food storage nor increased home production of food, nor anything else, can save us from destruction. But in the last War we had command of the sea certainly as complete as we can ever hope to have, and this command of the sea did not save us, and cannot in future save us, from irregularities in supplies and 2931 from a very serious danger both of food shortage and, through ship shortage, of deficiency in all our great supply services.
This subject has been referred to in two important Debates, this year and last year, in another place. There has been no comparable Debate, I believe, in this House, but attention was drawn to the subject in Debates elsewhere, and I ventured myself to initiate correspondence in the "Times" which was supported in the leader columns and which attracted a certain amount of attention last year. Shortly afterwards the Government established their Food (Defence Plans) Department. But a little time after that, when one was hoping that they were really proceeding with this proposal seriously, the right hon. Gentleman made a reference in the Debate of 18th February which seemed to me rather ominous. He said, referring to this proposal for food storage:Hon. Members have little conception of the complexity or expense of the question. If anybody reflects on the cost of buying, as suggested by Sir Arthur Salter, 12 months food and the cost of providing storage facilities, he would not wonder that the programme is so expensive."—[OFFICIAL REPORT, 18th February, 1937; col. 1425, Vol. 320.]Similarly in questions afterwards the right hon. Gentleman, if not quite so definitely negative and discouraging, has certainly been very reticent. While therefore I believe this to be a very vital question, I do not feel that we have any real assurance that it is being secured its adequate place among the general defence plans of the country.
I do not, indeed, draw conclusive inferences from what the Minister has said or has not said. I can quite understand why he should be reticent as to the particular character of the plans that he may now be making. I am really more anxious, because of one very simple fact. The Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence is, of course, in a certain sense in the position of an arbitrator between great competing services and interests with claims on his attention. As regards the three fighting Services, each of them is a great strong fighting department with strong professional traditions. On the other side, food storage is represented by the latest and smallest of our Departments, with the exception of the right hon. Gentleman's own Department, 2932 and indeed by what is only a civilian section of a civilian Department. We all know that any arbitrator who tries to do justice between competing claims which are supported by organisations of very unequal strength has special difficulty in securing justice and a due balance. One has to consider that when on the one hand the Minister is pressed by the three fighting Services, while on the other hand, food storage is advocated by this small civilian Department, it is only too likely that the latter will not get adequate consideration or be developed upon a sufficient scale.
This, I suggest, is the more the case because there is no great business organisation or interest that can correct that want of equipoise. If the Minister turns to business experience he finds that the great importing merchants think, naturally, in terms of storage at the ports, exactly where storage is most vulnerable; while the great agricultural interest thinks, naturally, in terms of increased home production. That, however, again is a less efficient defence than food storage of the kind that I advocate, namely, dispersed inland storage at places carefully chosen so as to be, on the one hand, convenient for transport and, on the other, as little vulnerable as possible.
The Food (Defence Plans) Department is the youngest Department. It is the Cinderella of Departments. It is not often that Cinderella has the happy experience in real life that it has in the fairy stories. I am asking that the right hon. Gentleman will fulfil the role of fairy godmother. Or if he thinks that role is not in all respects appropriate to him, if he would prefer, as well he may, a Biblical role as more suitable to him, I would refer him to the example of Joseph. Joseph was faced with a rather similar problem. He was confronted with a vision of lean kine and defective corn. It was a problem of a grave shortage for a limited period—very much like our war problem. He did not devote himself to fattening the kine and growing extra corn. What he did was to collect corn, and store it in granaries. That is precisely what I am asking the right hon. Gentleman to do and on a very substantial scale.
Why is this need so great? I do not propose now to advertise any deficiencies by speaking of any that might otherwise be unknown. I are content to refer to one or two statements made by Ministers, 2933 or very widely known through public statistics. Let me take in turn our main foods. We all know that our wheat supplies are very small. The Lord Chancellor, and Lord Runciman, when in this House, referred to them as being three months supply. But that was the figure for the average supply, and the actual at any one moment is very often a great deal lower than the average. The Home Secretary, when First Lord of the Admiralty, spoke of our only having, I think, six weeks food supplies in the country. I think that was inaccurate, and too gloomy a view of the situation. But it is probably true that very often our wheat supplies are so low that we are only separated by six weeks stocks from the point at which the Government would be compelled to think seriously of making terms with the enemy, because of the threat of imminent starvation. That is a very dangerous situation, so dangerous that during the last War, in spite of the immense difficulty that we were experiencing through shortage of sea transport, we were compelled, not having stores that we could draw upon and so relieve the situation, actually to increase our stocks during the conduct of the campaign. If you have wheat you can ration and deal with the rest. But it was only because we managed to build up by a tremendous effort sufficient supplies to avoid bread rationing that the rest of the rationing system worked well during the last War.
In meat, it is true that we produce more than half of our consumption al the present time, but we do it at the cost of importing a very great mass of feeding stuffs, so that it does not relieve us of our dependence on foreign imports to anything like the extent of the food value of the meat itself. In spite of the immense sums, and certainly excessive sums, of money we have devoted to the encouragement of the home production of sugar, we still depend for three-quarters of our supplies of sugar on imports. If we turn to other foodstuffs, fish we produce at home, but who knows whether we could produce it equally under war conditions? Of fruit, we import three-quarters and have very few stocks. Of eggs, we produce perhaps rather more than half, but again we have to import feeding stuffs for the purpose. It is only really in potatoes that we produce anything considerable here in the 2934 way of food supply without having to import to do so. We all remember that in the last War this situation led to very great danger. The situation is, if anything, more serious now because the population that we have to feed is greater, we have fewer merchant ships to transport supplies, and we have added to these difficulties the greater danger of air attack upon shipping.
What is the character and scale of the plan I would suggest? I should like to see dispersed inland storage of essential foodstuffs equivalent to a year's consumption of wheat. I say "equivalent," because the whole of the storage need not be in actual wheat itself, as I will explain in a moment. The supply, of course, could be worked up gradually, starting with six months, and working up until it reached a year's stock. I do not suggest storage at the docks, which is in the form of storage that might first be considered since the silos and the actual facilities are there, because I do not think that we dare do that in view of the danger from air attack upon the ports. Nor do I suggest "stockage" at the farms, which farmers would perhaps be inclined to suggest. It would be immensely difficult to work and very unreliable if called upon in an emergency, and very inconvenient in relation to transport and collection. Any one who had anything to do with the distribution of food in the last War knows how difficult was the collection of small stocks at the farms. On the other hand, I do not suggest the purchase of a year's consumption of wheat. Obviously, that, particularly in the present state of the market, would mean the complete dislocation of prices, and is clearly impracticable. But, in the first place, it is not necessary to make a year's purchase at once, and in the second place, it is not necessary to improve the wheat position by only storing wheat, and for this rather technical reason. I am assuming that we retain the command of the seas, and, therefore, that we shall, in any case, be importing a great deal. If that is so, the best system, I suggest, if you are going in for storage, is not to attempt to store a balanced stock of all essential foodstuffs. It is better to consider the essential foodstuffs which store most easily and store a disproportionate amount of them, because if 2935 you do that you are enabled to relieve tonnage when war comes and concentrate upon importing the food of which your stocks are less adequate. For example, sugar, I believe, stores a great deal better than wheat. I would therefore recommend to the Minister that he should store more than a normal proportion of the year's consumption of sugar and treat that as ensuring wheat. He can then be certain that having an ample store of sugar at the time in the country, he can immediately, when war comes, take every ship that would otherwise be employed in bringing sugar, and bring wheat instead. That does not dispense with the storage of wheat, but it means that it is probably advantageous, because sugar stores better, to store a larger proportion of the country's consumption of sugar than of wheat, and then to consider that as wheat storage and leave the persons controlling the ships to divert all ships from sugar to wheat when war breaks out.
I have said something about the need and the kind of plan which I personally advocate. May I strengthen my appeal by referring briefly to the alternatives? The first obvious alternative that occurs is the increase of home production. I am not now going to criticise the Government measures with regard to agriculture—there are other reasons for increasing agricultural production in this country—but I do think that we must realise that, as a contribution to the Defence problem, these measures can do very little, and indeed British agriculture as a whole does a great deal less than is commonly realised, and for this reason. All the food that we produce in this country does not greatly exceed, though it somewhat exceeds, the quantity of feeding stuffs and fertilisers which we need to import in order to make that production possible. Consequently the net contribution towards our essential weakness, of a dependence upon imports, is very little reduced by British agriculture. This dependence is to some extent reduced by some of the Measures now being undertaken by the Government. I think that measures to increase the fertility of the soil would be of some help in a long war, but it is only to a very limited extent that you can during war increase your production by ploughing up land. It takes a long time, and you would not 2936 get your first results for about eight or nine months or full results for something like a year and a-half. So, too, if you take other proposals. Take, for example, the increase of cattle. Meat on the hoof is a form of storage, but it is an extremely expensive form of storage. It is not only expensive to start but it is expensive when war comes because you have to feed your cattle all the time. If I may use an analogy, it is rather like depending for a need of quick locomotion that does not arise for some time ahead—you do not know quite when—upon a horse which is consuming oats while it waits, rather than upon a motor car, which you put into a garage and which does not consume petrol until it is actually used.
I want to emphasise this point because it has very great importance upon the relation between agricultural policy and Defence. During the last War the British Government started a scheme not only for ploughing up land, which had its advantages, but also for increasing the breeding of pigs. That scheme was not only not a help; it was a definite hindrance. I speak from direct personal experience in this matter. I remember that when I was managing the allocation of ships I was asked for an increased importation of maize. I asked the reason for it, and I was told that it was for the purpose of feeding the pigs, whose numbers had been increased by the Government's scheme. I made a rapid calculation and it was evident at once to me that I could bring in the pig ready for consumption as pork or bacon with very much less shipping tonnage than I could bring in the maize required to convert the young pig into the mature pig. The right hon. Gentleman the Member for Epping (Mr. Churchill) was then Minister of Munitions, and I wish he were now in his place, because I well remember having some considerable dispute with the Department that wanted maize for these pigs. I said, "Let us go and talk to the Minister of Munitions." We did, and as I have not been able to get the right hon. Gentleman's previous permission, I do not think that I had better quote the vivid terms in which he expressed his views.
The Minister, in referring to the proposal of food storage, made special reference to costs. The cost would indeed be considerable but it would be very small 2937 in relation to the advantages to be obtained and in relation to any other alternative.
I will quote something that Lord Astor said in another place in July of last year which gives some idea of the relative value of increasing wheat production and of storing wheat under such a scheme as I propose. Lord Astor said:We grow roughly 24 per cent. of our wheat and import 76 per cent. If we were to double our wheat production, we should still have to import over half. We are growing 24 per cent. because of the wheat quota. The Government lave increased the home production of wheat from 16 per cent. to 24 per cent., an increase of 8 per cent., at a cost of about £6,000,000 or £7,000,000 per annum. We could, I believe, store a whole year's wheat supply for an annual expenditure of something like £2,500,000.Lord Astor was not only then speaking with his great personal authority but as the result of a very careful inquiry into the whole agricultural position by a number of experts, the results of which has been published in a book called "The Agricultural Dilemma." In this book the further comment is made that if this reserve were drawn on to the extent of one-quarter in each year of the war,it would enable us to sustain a four years war while adding to our available supplies more than would be the case by the doubling of our annual home production. To attempt to double our home production would be so costly as to be quite impracticable.If the House will compare the figure of £6,000,000 or £7,000,000, for an increased production of 8 per cent., with the results obtained at a cost anywhere near Lord Astor's estimate, they will see how advantageous is the proposal which I am now advocating. Lord Astor said £2,500,000. I have another estimate of £3,000,000. I think that both estimates are now rather under the mark. But supposing it is £5,000,000, even then, I think, the advantages are overwhelming in comparison with the cost. When I say £5,000,000, I mean per annum. I am not including the first purchase of the supplies, nor am I including the cost of building granaries because they are each a capital cost. They are indeed a much more genuine capital expenditure than the greater part of objects on which we are spending the £80,000,000 a year, which under our present financial arrangements we treat as devoted to capital purposes.
2938 I will not trespass upon the House more than another moment or two, but I would like to summarise the great advantages of this proposal, which must be fairly set against the considerable but not excessive cost that would be involved. Some of these advantages are cumulative and some alternative. First of all, it would enable us, if we had a long war, to fight that war for several years undisturbed by the terrible prospect of imminent starvation. It would, in the second place, relieve our shipping very greatly indeed. One-fifth of our shipping is devoted to bringing in cereal imports; this is equivalent to the continuous employment of about 500 large ships. There would, too, I suggest, be a very great relief to the Navy, because beyond complete command of the sea it is a very great additional responsibility to have to defend an immense mass of shipping in detail and on every route. In particular, it would be possible to choose the routes that are less dangerous rather than being compelled, as in the last war, to choose at any cost in danger the routes which are quickest and shortest. We had to send ships through the Mediterranean at a time when one ship in four was being lost there, because we could not afford the time to send them round the Cape. We may have even stronger reasons next time for sending ships by the longer route. If we calculate the cost of providing the extra naval ships for detailed and dispersed protection of shipping on the one hand and the relief of the strain which would follow from the knowledge that there was something like a year's supply of wheat or its equivalent, everybody would realise that in value we were getting full money's worth in food storage.
The plan has also the great advantage that you would have no offset in the way of provoking competitive armaments. Food storage is 100 per cent. defensive. Extra cruisers and destroyers, however defensive may be their purpose, may be used for offensive purposes, and they will tend to increase the competition of other countries, which constitutes our danger. That is not true in any degree whatever of a purely pacific measure such as food storage. At the same time it saves the additional provision of protective craft which would otherwise be necessary, and which would not in any case give the 2939 same measure of security. Moreover as the right hon. Member for Caithness and Sutherland (Sir A. Sinclair) has pointed out, a measure of this kind would reduce not only our danger in war but our danger of war, because our vulnerability through our dependence upon foreign imports of food is perhaps the greatest temptation to countries with aggressive tendencies.
One further advantage, and in some respects the greatest, from this Measure is that it would relieve the Government of the day, when war comes, of the very grave danger of panic decisions during the conduct of the war. Such decisions are always liable to be taken if there is an imminent danger of starvation. In the last war I was the Director of Ship Requisitioning. It was my duty not only to requisition shipping but to allocate ships to the different services. Consequently I felt perhaps more than any one else in the country in the course of my daily work the continuous impact of the submarine losses. I wish I could convey something of the environment in which decisions had to be taken at a time of a serious shortage of ships and with low stocks of all-essential supplies. The responsibility is terrible and the danger is greater because at first it may only be realised by those who are immediately concerned with the control of ships. Then among the higher authorities there may be a rapid change from complacency to panic.
Viscount Runciman, who occupied during the War the position which he occupied in the Government until a few weeks ago, would remember well that grave as the shortage of shipping was, the picture of it presented to the Government sometimes exaggerated it. For some time the danger was not taken seriously enough and then, after a sudden burst of submarine losses, or when it was realised suddenly how low was a particular stock of an absolutely vital foodstuff, so serious were the representations made to the Government that they might well have been led into panic decisions of the utmost gravity, affecting the character of our operations in France and the continuance of some of the distant expeditions.
When in the middle of a great war only a few weeks' supply stand between the population and starvation, there must 2940 always be a danger of panic decisions. We have to deal with the menace at sea, and with the terror by night. But above all we have to do what is humanly possible to supplement the naval protection of our imports by some measure for securing an adequate stock of the most essential foodstuffs. We need above all to reduce the very grave risk that during a war the Government of the day may be driven to panic decisions, perhaps by an exaggerated view of the dangers at a particular moment. For that purpose I suggest that in value for money there is nothing comparable with the measure of safety that can be obtained by the provision of the food storage which I venture to suggest.
§ 6.35 p.m.
§ Wing-Commander James
The hon. Member for Oxford University (Sir A. Salter) will forgive me if I do not follow him on the particular line that he has taken. I want to come back to the general Debate. This Debate is of great importance and it is to be hoped that the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence and the Government will take cognisance of the points of view that have been expressed in all three opening speeches, and of the dissatisfaction which is evidently felt in all parts of the House at the narrow interpretation which the Minister appears to have placed upon his duties. It is upon that particular point that I desire to speak. It was in November, 1933, that I first presumed to raise the question of the need for closer co-ordination between the three Defence Services. I had previously done all that a private Member can do to raise the point, privately, but I was told emphatically and repeatedly that there was no need to worry, because the existing Committee of Imperial Defence was quite enough to meet all requirements. I continued to press the matter, as did many other hon. Members. The present Leader of the Opposition added his great weight and war-time experience to our efforts, and it was an immense relief to many of us in March, 1936, to learn of the appointment of the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence, an appointment which we had been so often told was wholly unnecessary.
I based the greatest hopes on that appointment, but now, 16 months after the appointment was made, I would presume to review the results of the appointment as they appear to an obscure back- 2941 bench Member. I claim this justification for presuming to read a lecture to anybody on the Front Bench that I have been in this problem of inter-service co-ordination almost from the beginning. It is more than 22 years ago that I was an observer on the aeroplane that carried out the second contact patrol that was undertaken in the last War. It was in May, 1915, and the result, incidentally, was negligible. Twenty-one years ago I was the liaison officer for co-ordination between the cavalry and the Royal Flying Corps on the Somme. And 20 years ago I was on the staff of General Headquarters in France, responsible for co-ordinating co-operation training between the Army and the Royal Flying Corps. Therefore, long before the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence took over his appointment I had been deeply interested in this subject. I derive little comfort from the fact that in those days the Minister for Co-ordination would probably have had to salute me, or that the present Chancellor of the Exchequer was for a short time during the War in statu pupularii to me.
The right hon. Member for Epping (Mr. Churchill) said the other day that we needed a Minister of Supply. Whether that be so or not, I think that what we need still is a Minister of Co-ordination. I think that up to a point we have got a Minister of Supply, but I am certain that we have not got a Minister of Co-ordination, because—and this really is my whole charge against my right hon. Friend—he has made this vital and elementary mistake, that he has put the cart of supply before the horse of strategy. He has approached the problem at the wrong end. He has not succeeded in breaking away from the shackles of the Committee of Imperial Defence, into which he was immediately put when he was appointed. I hoped that he was going to break those shackles, but I am afraid that he has not, and that the system has beaten and absorbed him.
It is a system which for years past, as has been disclosed by correspondence in the "Times" from past Chiefs of Staff, has been designed and perfected to shelve and not to solve problems. It is a system which results in contests between the Departments, in which the strongest and perhaps the most unscrupulous Department wins. It is a system which, as the 2942 present Home Secretary said when he was First Lord of the Admiralty, has been designed to find the least objectionable point of contact between the Services. The fault is political. Inevitably, reform must come from the top. It can be imposed only by the Government. It cannot originate from the Services or in the Committee of Imperial Defence itself. It has to be a Cabinet decision that will remove this glaring defect. The trouble is that our senior Ministers, belonging still to the pre-War generation, are so well able to see the trees that they cannot see the wood.
I want to be brief, and I will therefore presume to make a few bald unqualified assertions. I assert that there is an obvious lack of strategical planning apparent in the whole of our rearmament programme. Only yesterday a body concerned with Army policy circulated a memorandum expressing views on recruiting. What was one question they felt obliged to put in that pamphlet? "What is to be the strategical role of the Army?" What is the position of the Navy and the Air Force in relation to the narrow seas? In every case when one raises these points one is told, and I have no doubt that we shall continue to be told, "Do not worry. The Joint Planning Committee has these matters under close consideration." I ask the House not to be put off by the statement that the Joint Planning Committee is doing everything that is worth doing, because the Joint Planning Committee is simply three departmental, and relatively junior officers, brought together to find the least objectionable points of contact. They have in fact no power of initiation. They are simply part of the machine of the old Chief of Staffs Sub-Committee. That they have been reinforced, as we have been told in the last days, is all to the good, but that is not enough. We want more than a multiplication of ad hoc committees.
I assert in the second place that the departmental battles continue unabated. I assert also that there is grave disappointment in all the Services at the lack of results on the appointment of the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence, I assert—and this is a point upon which I desire an answer—that there is apparently no change in the composition of the Committee of Imperial Defence which will make it more effective than it was in 2943 the last War. I cannot remember ever hearing anybody in the last War allude to the Committee of Imperial Defence. I never heard it referred to at General Headquarters in France, nor can I remember any authoritative book on the War or any reminiscences of the War in which the work of the Committee of Imperial Defence is referred to. I suggest that under the present system what happened in the last War will happen again; the Prime Minister will be left in the air without a staff, without advisers, and that the existing system will again break up, its component parts reverting to their own Departments, and that again there will be no joint planning at all.
I do not want to be accused of being purely destructive, and therefore let me put forward two or three simple suggestions. I have made them before: I shall make them again. The first is that the Imperial Defence College should be enlarged, that the age of entry should be reduced, and that by concentrating staff training there we should get away from having three separate staff colleges and doctrines of war. I suggest that the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence should equip himself with a small real joint General Staff, wholely detached from the three Ministries, through which he himself would exercise executive powers. I do not claim this to be in any shape or form original because this has been suggested before. On 27th February a statement was made on behalf of the Government to this effect:These new officers"—that is, additional to the existing Joint Planning Committee—and the Imperial Defence College will be working together, reinforced if need be, and as experience shows to be necessary in the future, will give us what we need, which is a great General staff in the truest and fullest sense of the word.That was said by the Secretary of State for Air more than a year ago in another place, and as far as I know it has not been implemented in any way. There is one further point, not less important. I think the Minister should compel the discontinuance of the system of child entrants into the Navy, the taking of small boys for training as officers, a practice which in later years has such deleterious effect on the naval mind. That brings me to one other point, and here I confess 2944 that I am in the difficulty, that I do not know whether I am shouting before I am hurt. I understand that on Thursday next there is to be an announcement on the future status of the Fleet Air Arm. In the absence of any Joint General Staff which might have insured an impartial consideration of these matters—I do not want in any way to be offensive, the word impartial is an unhappy one—a consideration in its broadest aspect free from pressure, and in view of the pressure which one Department—that is the Admiralty—has put upon the Government, I feel justified in saying a word on this projected declaration.
I agree that whatever the decision may be it has to be a compromise, it has to be a decision adjustable in the light of circumstances, and above all, it has to be a settlement. As the right hon. Member for Epping has said, we cannot go on for years having Government Departments doing what the Admiralty have done for so many years past, refusing to accept Government decisions. Here again I will make one or two brief, bald, and rather aggressive assertions to justify what I have said. The Army and the Air Force, especially the Air Force, have little confidence in naval staff work and they are apprehensive as to what may happen if the Government give way too far. All of us, whatever Service we may have originated from, who served in the Air Force during the War, have a lively recollection of the unhappy state to which aviation under the Admiralty was reduced.
Finally, let me put one or two direct questions on this point to the Minister. Has this problem of the Fleet Air Arm been examined in the light of the widest strategical considerations? Has there been consultation with, has advice been obtained from, senior officers who have served in the Fleet Air Arm under both the Admiralty and under the Air Ministry? Has advice, has opinion, been obtained from the past instructors and the commandants of the Imperial Defence College who have specialised in co-operative staff work? May we have assurances on two points, first, that the younger Cabinet Ministers who have themselves had war experience will have an opportunity of reviewing the evidence upon which a decision is made, and lastly, if there is to be any material, any major change, in policy to be announced next Thursday 2945 may we have an assurance that if enough Members so desire we shall be given an opportunity of debating the decision at a later date?
§ 6.54 p.m.
§ Mr. A. Edwards
One speaker after another has drawn the attention of the Minister to problems of vital importance which it would appear have been neglected. One hopes that they have not been neglected and that the right hon. Gentleman when he replies will be able to satisfy the House. The problem I wish to bring to the attention of the Minister is the same as that which I brought to his notice some 18 months ago, that is, the question of our oil supplies. There might have been some doubt a year ago whether the production of oil from our own coal was a practical proposition, but to-day I do not think there is any doubt. All the experts are agreed that we can produce all the oil which this country will require in times of peace or war, and I hope the Minister will be able to give us a definite statement as to the Government's policy in this matter. From a statement made in another place I understand that the Government have accepted the proposition that all our oil requirements can be produced from coal, and that it is only a question as to which process should be adopted. If that is true, then I hope the Minister will confirm the statement made in another place. If it is not true, I hope he will give the House and the country some idea of the proposals which are to be made for securing our oil supplies in time of war.
The question of our supplies of food, a matter of vital importance, has been raised to-day, but I do not think it is any more important than our supplies of oil. I understand that the Government are preparing storage for oil at considerable expense. The last time the Minister did me the courtesy of replying to my question he told me that he was not satisfied that the production of oil from coal was a commercial proposition. May I put this question to him as the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence: Is he satisfied that the money spent on ships and tanks and aeroplanes is a commercial proposition? We are not discussing these matters as a commercial proposition but as questions of defence. Lord McGowan, the head of Imperial Chemical Industries has said that we can produce all the oil 2946 we want in time of war and in time of peace, but he also said that it is not a matter for private enterprise, but a matter of national policy. I hope the Minister will tell us whether it is the policy of the Government to produce our supplies of oil from coal. Two days ago the Secretary for Mines said that it was impossible to assess the value of finding supplies of oil in this country. One of the greatest experts in the world has told us that this country has more supplies of oil than almost any other country, but it is in solid, not in liquid form.
When we are considering the question of Defence we do not consider the cost. It is quite true that the production of oil from coal must be a subsidised industry, but I know many less worthy industries which are obtaining a subsidy. If the question of the production of oil from coal is vital, I do not think we should stick at any cost. The right hon. Member for Carnarvon Boroughs (Mr. Lloyd George) has said that Germany lost the War finally by oil sanctions. We ought to know what steps are being taken by the Government in this matter. The figures I quoted to the House more than a year ago about the employment side of this problem were not nearly so good as those which came from a much greater authority. Lord McGowan has said that if the Government undertake to produce their oil supplies from coal there will be employment not for 80,000 men, the figure I gave, but for 300,000 men. When the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence puts this question into the sphere of economics I hope he will consider the effect of a reduction like that in our unemployment figure of 1,500,000. It is said now by all the best authorities that the figures I gave were on the low side and that the proposition works out much better than I put it.
I would like to touch on one other subject—the location of industries. Have any steps been taken to prevent the spread of industries in the London area? It is safe to say that 50 per cent. of the people living in London have no right to live there, and should be living in different parts of the country. Fifty per cent. of the factories which have been established in the London area in the last 10 years have no moral right to have been established here. If that is true, 50 per cent. of the traffic could have been avoided. The most dangerous thing that is happening 2947 in this country or will happen in the event of war is that an enormous proportion of our food supplies are being brought through the Port of London. The Port of London authorities are deliberately spending another £10,000,000 on expansion. We have ports up and down the country which are better fitted for dealing with these imports and exports, and it would be in the interests of safety and defence if you now began to use these ports very much more. Take our trade to the ports and districts where the people are rather than transfer the people to already overloaded centres. Will the Minister give either a denial or a confirmation of the statement made in another place that it is the accepted policy of the Government to produce all our oil requirements from coal?
§ 7.3 p.m.
§ Sir T. Inskip
The Debate which has taken place has ranged over such a vast number of topics that my statement—the statement to which the right hon. Member for Caithness (Sir A. Sinclair) called attention—that I was sometimes terrified by the responsibilities of my office, was well justified. The hon. Gentleman who has just spoken, for instance, who did not inform me that he was going to raise this question of oil, has paid me the compliment of assuming that I was an encyclopaedia of information capable of producing facts and figures without notice.
§ Mr. Edwards
If the right hon. Gentleman will read the report of the Debate in another place he will see that it is said that he has been advised of that Debate and given all the information requisite.
§ Sir T. Inskip
I am not complaining of the hon. Gentleman, but saying that he paid me a compliment in assuming that I should be ready without notice to produce the necessary information. I will come later to his observations, if I may. The whole question of my duties has been raised this afternoon. My hon. and gallant Friend behind me has spoken in somewhat serious terms of my failure to appreciate my proper responsibilities, and he complained that I have not given evidence of usefulness in my office with one exception. He fell into the mistake which was at one time common but which I had hoped had now been exploded, that 2948 I devoted my time and energies chiefly to the question of supply. That is a long way from the truth. It may be that when I began my duties, unfamiliar as I was with many topics, I began with some matters which then were urgent and which were comparatively simple; but the greater part of my time has long since been taken up with what may be described as preparation of plans, consideration of problems and, indeed, I have been engrossed in what the right hon. Member for Keighley (Mr. Lees-Smith) described as the intellectual problems.
When my hon. and gallant Friend behind me reads me a lecture on my failure to do anything else except act as Minister of Supply he does it, I know, with all good temper and for the good of my soul, but his facts are wrong. Reference has been made to the small staff which is associated with my Department. The right hon. Member for Epping (Mr. Churchill) has spoken of the trouble which newspaper headlines sometimes cause to speakers, but I find myself from time to time suffering from another mischief, and that is that when I try to introduce a little lightness into what is generally on my part a dull and heavy discourse I find that the lighter parts are taken out to the loss of what was of any importance. When I was addressing the Summer School in Oxford—it was a Summer School in Oxford on a bright summer morning—and when they had been listening to me for some time I thought that they were entitled to something lighter than they had been given, but hon. Gentlemen must not make too much of what is the truth, that my staff is a small one and the same with which I began, because in fact I have at my disposal a vast organisation—I do not think that that is too great a word—and I am entitled to draw on their accumulated experience and advice, and I have the advice and assistance of many outside the ranks of the Services.
My hon. and gallant Friend fell into another mistake when he expressed a hope that the constitution of the Committee of Imperial Defence would be changed. Would it not be a good thing if he were to read a little about the history of the Committee of Imperial Defence and understand its organisation? It is a body of which the only permanent member is the Prime Minister himself. The Prime Minister constitutes it as he thinks fit from 2949 time to time. The persons who are called to its deliberations are so many and represent such a wealth of experience, that I think in 1935 over 500 different persons—soldiers, sailors, airmen, industrialists, economists and politicians—were summoned to the Committee and its sub-committees for one purpose or another, in order that the best opinion might be obtained. To speak of altering the constitution of the Committee of Imperial Defence and to talk of it being broken up into its Departmental fragments when war breaks out, is wholly to misunderstand its constitution. It is not composed of Departmental representatives. Certain Ministers, of course, are summoned because they have special duties to perform in relation to defence, but the Prime Minister is entitled to summon to the Committee of Imperial Defence even those politicians, it may be, who are not for the moment Members of the Government, and subcommittees of the Committee of Imperial Defence at this present moment include others than politicians and others than the representatives of Departments. It is indeed the most flexible machine that could be devised for the purpose of getting together the collective wisdom which this great country can find in so many quarters. This is the machine in which my hon. and gallant Friend says I have been caught.
He says that he has never read a book in which any reference was made to the part played by the Committee of Imperial Defence in the late War. Perhaps it is because the Committee of Imperial Defence, like the Cabinet, does not publish its Minutes in order that they may be reproduced in popular works. Again I would invite my hon. and gallant Friend to consider what the history of the supreme control in the War was, and this will enable me to make one or two observations which illustrate the attention which has been paid to what the right hon. Member for Keighley has described as the intellectual problems, namely, what is the proper design of a staff or a Cabinet which has to be the supreme authority in a war. My hon. and gallant Friend says that the Committee of Imperial Defence played no part in the conduct of the War. Again he is wrong.
Everybody remembers that so far as the Government of the day were concerned the arrangements passed through three stages. In the first stage the 2950 Cabinet was the old peace-time Cabinet which carried on in normal conditions, but it was not many months before it was realised that the peace-time Cabinet would not be suitable for such an emergency. The second stage was to establish the War Committee answerable to the Cabinet, which relieved the Cabinet of the investigations and decisions involved in the day-to-day conduct of the War but reserved for the formulation of the Cabinet the larger questions of policy. It was after rather more than two years that the War Cabinet was devised which carried on the conduct of the War under the right hon. Member for Carnarvon Boroughs (Mr. Lloyd George) to the end. All these systems had this in common, that they had behind them the advice and the help of the machinery of the Committee of Imperial Defence, without which, indeed, these various bodies—I think anybody who knows the facts will agree—would have been less efficient for the purpose for which they were devised.
The politicians in a War Cabinet or Committee cannot possibly supply all the experience and knowledge which are, necessary to enable right decisions to be made, unless there is behind them somebody who can consider them with more professional experience, and it is because of this experience of the Great War that attention has been given to the preparation of a plan for the conduct of any war in which we may unhappily one day be engaged. The preparations and the plans are obviously plans which could be put into force only by the Government that provided them. They are plans which can be modified from time to time as conditions may alter, and they will be subject to the decision of the Government if and when war should break out. But the whole of these arrangements have been made with the object of effecting the transition on to a war footing with the least possible friction or indeed even without a change. Moreover, they are arrangements which have been tested to some extent, happily not in any major war or indeed in any actual war, but in some of the serious emergencies with which the Government have been faced in the course of the last two or three years.
All the time there is the Committee of Imperial Defence quietly working, meeting, and calling into its councils those who can make some contribution to the 2951 problems to be considered; and there will be the same machinery, the same great advisory body, whether it is a war cabinet or a war committee that is responsible for the conduct of any war into which we may come. But the plans go a little further than that. Arrangements have been made for ensuring that the commanders of each of the three Services in any theatre of war shall keep in close contact with one another, and they will reproduce the co-ordination, which happily is growing every day, of the Staffs at home; and if the plan is approved by the Government of the day, arrangements have been made to ensure that the instructions of responsible Service Departments to the commanders of their respective forces in the field shall also be closely concerted. I could, if this were the proper time and occasion on which to explain these plans, go into greater detail, but I hope I have said enough to suggest at any rate that this very necessary piece of preparation has not been overlooked; and I hope also that the hon. and gallant Gentleman will be prepared to think again as to the value of the Committee of Imperial Defence.
Now I will say something about my duties. I need only refer to the White Paper of March, 1936, for the most authoritative explanation or statement of the duties that have been entrusted to me. That White Paper set out those duties. As far as I know, they are my duties to-day. I have tried to carry them out, and I do not think I have neglected any part of them. According to the White Paper, the first of my duties is:The general day-to-day supervision and control on the Prime Minister's behalf of the whole organisation and activity of the Committee of Imperial Defence.I apprehend that that does not mean that I am to bear responsibility for everything that may be considered to come within the scope of Imperial Defence. Let hon. Members consider what a vast field Imperial Defence covers. When speaking at Oxford, I used the expression of General Ludendorff, that the next war will be a total war. Everybody will be involved. The fact is that when one considers Defence, there is nothing that is excluded, even down to the health and feeding of the children. But perhaps that is not a part of Defence as covered by the Debate to-day. I suggest that my 2952 duties cannot be so interpreted as to make me the Departmental Minister responsible for explaining, justifying arid defending Government policy, whether it be in relation to the Service Departments or in relation to those Civil Departments which are likely to be involved in the preparation for any emergency.
I believe I am interpreting the decision of Parliament correctly when I assume that, while my duties are the supervision and control, as deputy of the Prime Minister when he is not able to be present or to give his attention to it, of the work and activity of the Committee of Imperial Defence, that does not mean that I am to answer in this House for the great variety of topics that people may regard as important in connection with Defence. I do not believe one could find a Minister or devise a staff that could undertake that responsibility. The next sentence in the White Paper provides that I shall be responsible for:The co-ordination of executive action,and then there is a reference to supply. I think that part of my duty has been carried out adequately; at any rate, I have carried it out to the best of my ability. The reference to "the co-ordination of executive action" is a very wide one, and undoubtedly it brings within my duties a great range of activities on behalf of the three Service Departments and also on behalf of the Home Office, in so far as passive air raid precautions are concerned.
I propose now to give such answers as I can to the questions that have been put to me in the Debate. I cannot hope to give a full answer to the questions put by the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Caithness and Sutherland. He put a fair and proper list of questions as to the plans for passive air raid precautions, and I can promise, as my right hon. Friend the Member for Epping suggested, that they will be noted and examined. The right hon. Gentleman put the questions with such rapidity that I could not take note of them, but they will be observed. At this moment, I cannot answer them, and, indeed, I do not think I am really the Minister whose duty it is to answer them in the House. Having mentioned that subject, let me say what has been done with regard to passive air raid precautions. Everybody agrees that they are extremely important, and 2953 I do not suppose the right hon. Gentleman thought that any of us was in any doubt about the dangers from the air. We know very well that we have a very vulnerable community in London, and that there are other communities which are almost equally vulnerable. For instance, the Coventry district and our naval ports are very vulnerable. Indeed, when the hon. Member for Oxford University (Sir A. Salter) asked about the storing of food supplies and suggested that they should not be stored in ports that are very vulnerable, but in places further inland, perhaps he overlooked how almost every part of this country is rapidly becoming vulnerable, if it is a question of places that are likely to attract the invading aeroplanes of an enemy.
§ Sir A. Salter
I suggested a great dispersion of storage places inland. I suggested that it was possible to choose much less vulnerable places.
§ Sir T. Inskip
I will deal fully with that question later on. We are all aware of the menace from the air, and a great deal of work has been done in connection with that. It is impossible for me to go into details, but it would be wrong to assume that a great deal has not been done, because until there were discussions with the local authorities, the matter had not received very much publicity. The very fact that discussions have taken place as to the financial responsibility indicates that our plans have reached a very advanced stage. The new problems having been raised, surely the first stage was to ascertain what were the matters that required attention, in relation to the fire brigade service, for instance, or the provision of gas masks and decontaminating stations, and when an estimate had been made of what was necessary, to pass to the second stage of beginning to provide the things that were essential, such as gas masks. That has been done. Thirdly, it became necessary to consider with the local authorities how those plans could be put into effect. The right hon. Gentleman and the House will perhaps know that the whole country has been surveyed. It has been divided into certain zones, in one of which preparations must be on a more elaborate scale than in another, according to the proximity of any menace to a particular community. If and when—and I hope it will be very 2954 soon—the question of financial responsibility is disposed of—
§ Sir T. Inskip
The Government have taken it in hand and are discussing it with the local authorities in the proper way. When those discussions have ended and when a proper settlement has been arrived at, those plans can be carried into active execution.
§ Sir T. Inskip
The hon. Member takes the attitude which the right hon. Gentleman who is his leader deprecated, namely, an attitude of "scare."
§ Mr. Holdsworth
I do not think the right hon. Gentleman has a right to say that. If it takes two years to suggest a plan, and if at the end of the two years there has been no decision as to who is to bear the cost, what is the good of arguing about all these preparations? It is time there was some decision on that point.
§ Sir T. Inskip
The preparation of schemes is a very important part of the plans. We must survey the country and see what it is necessary to provide, and the next stage is to settle who is to carry out the work. The hon. Member says that war may come before we have done that. I hope that war may not come before that. In every plan we are making, we consider the perpetual problem: are you to turn the whole country over to some elaborate preparation upon the footing that war will come certainly, or are you to do what is reasonable and methodical? I venture to think that in this matter the Government have been perfectly methodical and logical in elaborating the plans, in designing what is necessary, and in taking it up with the local authorities. All I can say is that the third stage has now been reached, and I see no reason why we should not at once begin to carry out the plans so carefully and elaborately made. I come now to the point made by the right hon. Gentleman opposite as to the intellectual problems, which he suggested I was not considering. The only illustration he gave was that the Air Ministry assumed that attack was so overwhelmingly superior to defence 2955 that there was no answer. I can truly say that neither I nor the Government have ever formed that opinion.
§ Sir T. Inskip
I cannot deal with past Governments, and I am very glad to have the right hon. Gentleman's assurance that he does not make that charge against this Government. As a matter of fact, that is one of the intellectual problems—a word which seems almost too good for anything with which I am connected—to which a great deal of attention has been given. I am wholly of the opinion that was first suggested, I think, in a speech of the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Epping, who said that if proper attention was given to the possible methods of defeating an air menace, a way would be found. The right hon. Gentleman has repeated that statement this afternoon.
§ Sir T. Inskip
I share that view. The right hon. Gentleman the Member for Caithness asked what was happening in the research committee? He will not expect me to answer that question even when I have read it in the OFFICIAL REPORT, except to tell him that the research committee is very active and has produced some very remarkable results. I am sure the right hon. Gentleman will be content with that answer. Indeed he himself shows how far he is behind the stage which the research committee has reached by his recital of the matters which he hoped they were considering. I can assure him that the discoveries and the inventions have passed a little further than he indicated. But these are matters that everybody must speak of with a proper regard to secrecy.
I am aware, when I speak of secrecy, that one of my friendly critics once said of me that if I take on the veil of secrecy it is very difficult to know whether my eyes are on the ground or on the air. That is true perhaps, and I have to put up with that criticism, but nothing could be more disastrous or wrong than for me to drop even a hint at what research has attained and how much stronger we are in air defence, in consequence of its discoveries and the application of those discoveries. My mind, I can assure the right bon Gentleman opposite, is not so 2956 cluttered up with details that I am unable to consider questions of this kind. My noble Friend the Secretary of State for Air has devoted himself very much to this problem and has been and is engaged in devising methods of defence which I hope will secure that immunity to which my right hon. Friend referred, even sooner than the eight or nine years which he indicated as the period within which success might be attained.
This illustrates as well as anything else the lack of foundation in the complaints that I have not a proper staff. Nobody supposes that my small personal staff is engaged in considering these problems. Of course it is not. The research committee keep these matters under their consideration. I share in the deliberations. I cannot contribute anything on the scientific side of the examination of these problems and it is not my personal staff which is doing the work—it is this great organisation of which the research committee is only a part. In a sense, that is really my staff and when hon. and right hon. Gentlemen speak of my Department as not being adequately equipped for the work which I am doing, if they would take a larger sweep and look at this organisation of which I have tried to give an illustration in connection with air defence, they would realise that it is the best equipped staff which this country could possibly have.
Sometimes I think hon. Members are in the habit of thinking that the mention of a committee is an indication that a particular question has been shelved. Somebody used that expression this afternoon and referred to the shelving of some problem or some difficulty. We often have committees and committees can be very tiresome, tedious and dilatory bodies but I assure the House that the Committees with which I am acquainted are composed of men who come to them not because they have any spare time but because they ward to settle these questions. They are, in fact, joint staffs and they are considering these problems with all the knowledge that the Service Departments, industrialists, scientists and business men can bring together to solve them. Let me repeat, so that this may be the last occasion upon which this mistake as to my duties will find utterance, that although at the beginning I may have given 2957 perhaps a disproportionate part of my time to Supply matters, that part of my duties is now to some extent running so smoothly under the direction of my right hon. Friends and also with Sir Arthur Robinson at the head of the Supply Board, that the time I give to those problems is but a fraction of the time I spend in considering those larger questions to which I have referred.
One of my hon. Friends referred to the disappointment which he felt at the fact that I was not in constant session with the Chiefs of Staff. I think that would be very inconvenient and I cannot imagine that the Chiefs of Staff would welcome my attendance. Nobody has been more helpful than the Chiefs of Staff and I will not say that I should be a skeleton at the feast but certainly I should not be a useful member of the committee. Will the House bear with me for a moment while I tell them what is done in this way of planning? Before my appointment, planning from day to clay was done by the Joint Planning Committee. It was the body, under the Chiefs of Staff, which prepared the necessary plans for any emergency or situation which required attention. Just about the time I was appointed the joint Planning Committee was reinforced by the appointment of an additional officer from each service to deal with what I may call long-range planning. Plans relating to every possible theatre of operations have been considered by this committee, approved and possibly revised by the Chiefs of Staff and in every case except one now under the consideration of the Government, those plans have been approved by the Government itself.
Does anybody think that those plans would have been better devised if I had sat with the Joint Planning Committee or the Chiefs of Staff, while they were hammering out the technical details involved? You cannot turn a decayed lawyer into a service expert merely because you think he ought to sit with the Chiefs of Staff in continuous session. I think the system which is in force to-day is about the best which could be devised, and I think I may say without undue arrogance, that when I have exercised the right given to me in the White Paper of summoning the Chiefs of Staff to consult with me when I think fit, I have sometimes assisted in the laying out of a 2958 particular problem and in hastening the decision which ultimately has to be taken by the Government of the day.
Take the question of anti-aircraft defence, about which a great deal has been said. I hesitate to say these things to the House because they bear the appearance of assuming to myself a greater usefulness than my hon. and gallant Friend behind me would allow me to receive. But I asked at the end of last year the Chiefs of Staff and the heads of the Services to consult with me as to the whole question of anti-aircraft defence. I wrote a long memorandum on the subject which has been the basis of all the preparation that have since been made for extending anti-aircraft defence from those regions to which it was first attributed, to other places more remote and inland, in the West and North, which have to be protected against the ever-increasing range of aircraft, just as much as Portsmouth, Chatham or London.
That is an illustration of what sometimes happens. I would even claim that in the work I have tried to do in connection with the Fleet Air Arm I have been engaged in one of those intellectual problems to which the right hon. Gentleman opposite referred. My right hon. Friend the Member for Epping was, I think, inclined to suggest that we had taken too long over it, and I do not say that he is wrong, but at any rate it is now completed as far as I am concerned. The decision must be, of course, the decision of the Government. Whether the reasons in my report are right or wrong has to be considered by a better authority than myself, but I can assure the House that it has not been an easy task. It has not been a task which I could complete by a stroke of the pen and a "Yes" or "No" to the demands of one service or the other. The Imperial Conference with its absorbing demands upon the time of Ministers, did not make it easier either for the Chiefs of Staff or myself to complete the examination. Someone asked me whether I had considered the strategic considerations. I should have been very much wanting in my appreciation of my task if I had not considered the strategic considerations. I have thought of that as well as my hon. and gallant Friend. My right hon. Friend below the Gangway said it had been difficult to arrive at a decision, and nobody thinks that even 2959 a speedy decision would enable a plan to be carried out and completed within a few weeks or months. Whatever is necessary to make the Fleet Air Arm the effective instrument which it ought to be, is obviously something which will require time, and labour as well, to be spent upon it.
As far as the questions which have been submitted to me are concerned, I think I should be wearying the House if I attempted to deal with them in detail, but I did propose to speak on the subject of food supplies. Before doing so, I may reply in a sentence to the hon. Member opposite who made one or two statements which I could not accept. He said it was now universally admitted that we could provide more oil than we wanted from coal. I do not know where that is admitted, but the universality of the admission does not extend to me. I do not believe it is true. I realise, as everybody does, the importance of extracting some oil from coal, partly for special purposes and partly because it provides relief in some hardly-pressed areas, if it is possible to do it. I may remind the House that Lord Falmouth's Committee has been appointed to examine various processes for the production of oil from coal and to report on their economic possibilities and the advantages to be obtained from them by way of security of oil supplies in an emergency. When that committee has reported the Government will be able to consider whether the cost of such a scheme and the loss involved is disproportionate to the advantage to be obtained.
But I may point this out to the hon. Member opposite. If you were going to produce oil from coal you would want not one or two or three units but perhaps a number running into double figures. [An HON. MEMBER: "Twenty."] Let me point out to the hon. Member that with every unit you erect for producing oil from coal, you erect one more target for the enemy. If we were to make ourselves dependent solely upon oil from coal and were not to keep in existence a service of tankers, we should give one more hostage to fortune. The destruction of one or two or three units would bring disaster, because it would mean the difference between sufficiency and insufficiency. I quite recognise the importance of considering this problem, but it is 2960 rather a larger one than the hon. Gentleman is constrained to admit.
§ Mr. A. Edwards
The point that I brought to the Minister's notice was this, that with the full authority of the Government it was said last week that they accepted the proposition of the necessity for producing oil from coal, and that it was only a question of which one of three processes would be adopted.
§ Sir T. Inskip
Yes, as an addition, and a useful addition, to the other resources. I accept that, but I think the hon. Gentleman would not put his case as high as to suggest that we ought to get all the oil that we want from coal.
§ Sir T. Inskip
It is theoretically possible, but it is undesirable from more than one point of view. Now let me say a word about food storage, which was raised by the hon. Member for Oxford University. Few people know more about it than himself, and I thankfully acknowledge the contribution which he has made. That is one value of these Debates, that we can get these questions thrashed out with contributions from all parts of the House. I am only in a position to say this, that the Government have had the assistance of one of our greatest public servants, a civil servant, on this question for months. He reviewed the position in all the detail which was necessary to enable the Government to come to a decision on the question of food storage. It is not an easy question, and the proposals have not been either rejected or accepted at present by the Government. The Government are aware of the advantages. I do not think anybody considering food storage would for a moment fail to form the opinion which the hon. Gentleman has expressed that it would be an immense relief to the Government to feel that they had behind them a substantial quantity of food for the population, but that is not to dispose of all the considerations. Reference has been made to the cost of many of these services. The cost, even if it be what the hon. Member for Oxford University has put upon it, is not a negligible item, and a great many of these questions have to be considered in the light of their cost, of their relative importance, and of their place in the whole scheme of defence for which the Government are responsible. 2961 The hon. Gentleman spoke of it as a department or branch of defence which was not securing its proper place, but he was wrong in hinting that there is any opposition from the Services to food storage. Indeed, the Services would heartily welcome it. It has had very close attention, and it is now, as I say, in a state in which the Government can take a decision, and the House may be assured that it will be fully informed, necessarily, of what the Government's decision is.
§ Sir A. Salter
May I correct an impression that I did not intend to give, namely, that I thought the Service Departments were opposing it? I never had that idea, but what I feared was that when the Departments were competing for all the resources and the attention they could get, it was perhaps unlikely that a Department such as I mentioned would be, so to speak, an equal competitor, which is a very different thing from imagining that they were opposing it. On the contrary, I know that some of the greatest Service Departments would very greatly welcome this proposal as a relief from their own responsibility.
§ Sir T. Inskip
I can assure the hon. Gentleman that the unlikely has happened and that this food question has had a very high place in our considerations. I am afraid that I cannot say more than that at the present time. He himself has mentioned many parts of the problem which require attention, such as feeding stuffs for cattle, with the difficulties of which he is familiar. I have detained the House for some time, but there is one question which, although it may be said that it is not strictly within my duties to attend to, was raised by my right hon. Friend the Member for Epping. He referred again to this question of guns in Spain and elsewhere. Hon. Members have perhaps been a little impatient at the absence of information, and the Government, of course, are always anxious to give information which in their discretion can properly and safely be given. Even now it is not possible or desirable for me to give full details, but I think I can give enough to allay any anxiety which the House may feel on this question. No guns have been mounted in the Bay of Algeciras which can in the circumstances be regarded as constituting any threat to Gibraltar. A battery of four large howitzers was 2962 mounted overlooking the Straits, and in fact two have been removed. These howitzers were in the possession of the Spanish Government before the outbreak of the civil war, and we are advised that if they had been intended to be any threat to Gibraltar, they would have been differently disposed. I am not competent to explain the technicalities, but the mountings, the placing of the guns, or whatever the arrangements are, would have been different. A howitzer is not a seaward gun. Somebody suggested that a howitzer was likely to be a menace to shipping in the Straits of Gibraltar.
The remainder of the guns in the Bay of Algeciras are, to use my right hon. Friend's term, secondary. They are few in number, and these guns, neither in numbers nor in size, threaten Gibraltar, nor were they sited so as to have that purpose, but in all cases, whether of guns of larger calibre or the secondary guns, they are all of them out-powered by the Gibraltar armament. In the circumstances of the Spanish civil war and in the light of events, I think the House will agree that the presence of these guns is quite intelligible and that it is not necessary to imagine or to invent any sinister intentions with regard to this country. There is no reason, the Government think, having carefully considered it, for raising the question at all or for any scare or anxiety as to the situation. Indeed, the mere fact that two of these howitzers have been removed is perhaps a straw which would indicate the course of the current.
As to the opposite shore Ceuta always has been heavily armed. There were guns there before the War. It is true that there have been additions to the existing armament, but we have been well aware of the guns, and, except that every gun anywhere is a potential threat to anything that comes within its range, it cannot be said that these guns are a threat to Gibraltar or to the shipping. It is quite true that if they were part and parcel of a larger design, they would then have to be considered as part of a great problem. I am only considering them as separate, as an incident apart from the whole question that is really proper to be considered by my right hon. Friend the Prime Minister or the Foreign Secretary. The House will realise that after all Ceuta is Spanish territory, and I suggest to the House that the Government can be trusted to consider whatever 2963 importance these guns may have in relation to the whole of the circumstances, which, of course, are constantly kept under review. I hope these facts that I have stated will dispose of some of the somewhat unnecessarily alarmist statements which have been made with regard to these supposed threats.
I cannot hope to have covered very many of the topics that have been raised. I can but repeat what I have already promised that I will study the many suggestions made by the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Caithness and I join in thanking him for having raised such a number of important topics. The right hon. Gentleman opposite referred to the fact that it is a long time since I last addressed the House on these subjects. I should like to thank hon. Members in all parts of the House for the help that they have given me, for the forbearance that they have shown, and for the contributions that have been made both in Debate and in correspondence, and I am quite sure that, speaking on behalf of the Government, we can truly say that we desire nothing better than the helpful criticism which has been addressed to me this afternoon in an attempt to make this country as safe as it can be against an emergency which we hope will never overtake us.
Before the right hon. Gentleman resumes his seat, can he make a statement as to when the Government—
§ 7.56 p.m.
§ Mr. Amery
As I listened to my right hon. Friend's speech and watched the faces of hon. Members in every quarter of the House waiting, eagerly waiting, for my right hon. Friend to deal with the main issue raised in this Debate, I could only think of a famous line of Milton's:The hungry sheep look up and are not fed.My right hon. Friend has made no attempt whatever to deal with the fundamental vital issue affecting our whole defence which has been raised in this Debate. He has told us a lot that we have all been familiar with for years and years about the work of the Committee of Imperial Defence, about the 2964 innumerable ad hoc committees and the useful work done by the Committee of the Three Chiefs of Staff with their joint planning committee, consisting of officers in the various Departments, and so on. We have known all about that for years, and for years the House of Commons regardless of party has said that that is not enough. That is a method which does fulfil certain valuable functions, but it is not capable of giving us a real co-ordination of defence policy. By a co-ordination of policy we mean something that will get the fullest value out of the immense efforts and sacrifices that are being demanded of this country. We mean something which is going to prevent the waste of overlapping, the waste of incoherent and inconsistent policies as between different Departments concerned. We believe, I am speaking I venture to say on this issue fur the whole House, that that can only be done by entrusting it to one Minister assisted by an adequate staff of his own, a staff for the time being not any of them members of one or other of the fighting Services but attached to him and reinforced—I entirely agree with the Opposition spokesman here—by the ablest civilian brains you can find, a staff which would be in a position to examine the fundamental question of what each Department contributes to the common defence and whether what it wishes to do does effectively contribute to that defence. This afternoon in the course of the earlier discussion as to what was or was not in order, my right hon. Friend said that he was not called upon to advise what should be the defence policy of the various Departments but only to co-ordinate.
§ Mr. Amery
I took it down at the time, and we shall see from the OFFICIAL REPORT whether or not I have taken it down correctly. I took it down that he was not called on to advise the measures necessary for home defence but only to co-ordinate. He clearly uses the word "co-ordinate" in an entirely different sense from that in which the House as a whole uses it. He means the mere adjustment of difficulties that may arise between the Departments. We have been told that the Exchange Equalisation Fund exists to even out minor fluctuations in the exchanges. I gather that that is the 2965 conception that my right hon. Friend has of his functions with regard to the vital problems of defence. If that is his conception, I am not surprised that it has taken the best part of 18 months to come to some sort of decision on such a trifling matter, relatively speaking, as the control of the Fleet Air Arm. I am not surprised that the question whether the Cardwell system gives us, or can give us, an Army suited to our strategical necessities is only now being considered by the War Office. I am not surprised that, when it comes to the equally vital question of the defence of this country against an attack that may come within an hour of the declaration of war, we are now reaching that second stage when the Treasury and the local authorities have begun to wrangle as to who is to pay if and when the measures of defence are begun to be taken. I entirely agree with the remark of an hon. Member on the benches opposite who suggested that possibly war might come before we had got very far in these various preliminary stages towards putting our defences in order.
I should like to say something—for my right hon. Friend has said nothing—about that tremendously important issue of our home defence against air attack which was raised so justly in a speech of great thought and ability by my right hon. Friend the Member for Caithness (Sir A. Sinclair), to whom we are greatly indebted for giving us the opportunity of this Debate. It is perfectly true, as my right hon. Friend the Member for Epping (Mr. Churchill) said, that the first essential is that we should have a fighting air force equal to that of any power. Still, your sword may be as good as your opponent's, but if you lack body armour and he possesses it you fight under a tremendous disadvantage. If our air squadrons get through successfully, as no doubt they will, and are met by effective ground defence at every point of importance, and if the enemy squadrons get through and are met with inadequate ground defence, then, whether the enemy succeeds in paralysing our machinery for conducting the war by destroying our armament factories, or whether he paralyses the life of the nation by destroying our docks and means of communication, or whether he actually reduces parts of our population to panic—whatever he succeeds in doing puts us at a disastrous disadvantage.
2966 I am by no means disinclined to believe what my right hon. Friend the Member for Epping has said that in the course of years ground defence will master the air. Even to-day ground defence has enormously reduced the effective striking power of the aeroplane. You cannot prevent the aeroplane getting through, but you can reduce its chances of hitting vital targets by 90 per cent. or more if you have an effective ground defence. You certainly reduce also by 90 per cent. or more the damaging results which he may inflict on the population by the spread of fire, by poison gas, and other means. Ground defence may in part, if not altogether, master the air. But the air can master completely and devastatingly the country that has no ground defence. Have we even begun to prepare, either on the active or on the passive side, that ground defence which is required from the first hour of a great European War if we are dragged into it? We are to have presently two divisions of Territorials for this task. Why not 20? I believe that 20 is far nearer the mark of what is required.
Let me remind the House of what the problem is. As I have said, I believe that adequate ground defence can enormously reduce, if not entirely master, air attack. But there is one quality about ground defence which we must never forget—it is immobile. It can defend only the places which it is immediately guarding. An air opponent has every spot in England as his target within an hour. As my hon. Friend said very truly, there is no place in this country that does not offer a target, and there is no target in the country which, if it were left wholly defenceless and were destroyed, might not produce disastrous results to our defence. What we have to remember is that while we must defend every important point, there are an enormous number of points that should be defended and that can, therefore, only be defended by large numbers. We have to have adequate provision not only in the London area but in cities like Coventry and Birmingham, at every important railway junction, and at every important factory and harbour in the country. It is an enormous task. I cannot see from anything that my right hon. Friend said that the size of it has even begun to dawn on him.
2967 Then there is the whole question of the organisation of the passive defence of the population. As a matter of organisation that has been left to the Home Office. That may be right, and I am not going to enter on the details of that policy. But surely the strategical decision as to the kind of organisation must come from above. It cannot come from below. How can the Home Office decide as between poison gas and thermite bombs which is going to be the more probable or more formidable method of attack? It is for my right hon. Friend or for the Air Minister, if it is decided that the thermite bomb is the most formidable means and is the thing most likely to disorganise the whole of our defence, to give instructions to the Home Office to see that our fire brigades are doubled, or it may be quadrupled or multiplied by an even larger co-efficient. We must be secure on that side of our defence, and the necessary measures must be thought out and not merely argued between the local authorities and the Treasury as to what each would like to spend.
There is another very vital question. All this work of ground defence, whether it is fire brigade work, ambulance work, de-contamination work, or whatever it may be, can only be carried out if the men who do it are under definite discipline. What provision has been made for seeing that these men are under discipline? I understand that the whole operational control of the defence of this country is to be under the Air Ministry. By what chain of authority are the instructions and orders of the Air Ministry to be transmitted? Who is going to see to it that men of the fire brigade in a particular place in the hour of terror and danger really do turn up and do not shirk their work?
§ Mr. Amery
I do not believe they will. Our people are always ready to face danger splendidly wherever it is, whether it is on board ship when the ship strikes an iceberg or on the field of battle. All the same you have to reinforce natural courage and willingness with some form of discipline. You must have somebody who will give orders and decide which is the first thing to be done. As far as I under- 2968 stand the situation, it appears that that aspect of the problem has not been dealt with or considered. I suggest that in this question of defence against air attack at home we are dealing with one of the major problems of our defence. We are dealing with something which requires instant action in case of a European war. We want it from the first hour of the war down to the last hour. We are not dealing with the kind of problem that can be met like the old problem of invasion as something improbable for which some sort of partly trained reserve might suffice. We must have something that is as efficient when the signal goes as the fire brigade is efficient for its immediate task. It may very well be that this is a task that we cannot wholly entrust to the Territorial Force and that we will require a considerable stiffening of regular units, and certainly of regular officers and men in the home organisation. There is a tremendous piece of work that has to be done, and after 16 months or more since the appointment of the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence we are just beginning to get some of the early stages done.
Let me add a word about the Regular Army. One of the problems which has confronted us again and again in recent years is that which confronted us as far back as the South African War, when we were only able to save Natal by borrowing a division from India; and which confronted us recently when we were only able to deal with the position in Shanghai and in Palestine by all sorts of devices, scraping troops together and calling out the "A" reserves. The former Secretary of State for War truly said not long ago that it was a fortuitous and fortunate circumstance that the Palestinian and Abyssinian troubles did not coincide. Ought we not now, at last, to face one elementary, simple need of Imperial strategy, and that is the need for having some small reserve or surplus, one, or preferably two, divisions of troops, who, like the troops stationed overseas, are able to move anywhere without calling on the reserves, who are permanently mobilised and permanently available? Under the existing Cardwell system no such marginal reserve can exist. We have our minimum garrisons overseas. We have units which feed them from home, and in the case of mobilisation those units create an expeditionary 2969 force bearing no relation to any strategical requirements. Our most urgent need is for some troops to be available to prevent a small outbreak becoming a great conflagration, or which at a critical situation on the outbreak of a major war might just hold vital points before they could be seized by an enemy. That small reserve does not exist at all.
As for our expeditionary force, there, again, I should like to know for what purposes a five-division force is really suited, and for what strategical purposes it is being organised. It is true that in the Great War we were fortunate enough to be able to send our expeditionary force to the Continent without having to make use of it in one or other of the further theatres of war where danger might have affected our whole Imperial position. I can hardly conceive, in the present political constellation, of any great war in which there would not be an immediate demand for every regular soldier whom we can mobilise for the reinforcement of our existing garrisons overseas and for operations vitally affecting our security—it might be for Ceuta, for the defence of Egypt, or it might be for the northern frontier of India. I cannot imagine a situation arising in which the Regular Army, when mobilised, would not be urgently required at two or three points otherwise than on the Continent of Europe. If that is the case, ought we not frankly to make it clear to ourselves, and, indeed, to others, that in so far as immediate assistance in the mass warfare of the Continent is concerned it is upon the Air Force, a weapon of co-operation which we did not possess in 1914, that our allies must rely, and that if we are at all likely to send troops to the Continent—and personally I should be very doubtful about committing ourselves to that—it is much more likely to be, after several months of training, our Territorial Force rather than any of our small Regular forces.
I have not touched upon the recruiting question, because I believe that belongs more properly to our Army Debates, but I would only suggest that a reconstruction of our military system which would help to solve some of these strategic problems might also do a great deal towards solving the recruiting problem. We should have two periods of service, a short one 2970 to build a big reserve for an expeditionary force and a longer one to provide us with that small permanently mobilised reserve of which I spoke, as well as furnish our garrisons overseas. We should then be in a much better strategic position as well as offer a much better alternative to serving men than we do at present. I do not wish to detain the House any further, but I feel bound to voice what I can only describe as my profound dissatisfaction with the statement which my right hon. Friend has made. I cannot feel that he has at all answered the kind of case which has been put up time and again from every quarter of this House for an organisation, such as Germany possesses, which would provide a Minister who would be the Minister primarily responsible to the Cabinet and Parliament for the general defence, and for its proper co-ordination, with a staff of his own to help him. to work that out. I trust that the Government will even now consider whether something more is not required than the mere function of smoothing out minor differences and of assisting at, being present at, meetings of the Chiefs of Staffs and other committees. That is not what we want. We want a Minister who will be as effectively in control of the Chiefs of Staffs, for that particular purpose, and speak for them in Cabinet and in this House, as the First Lord speaks for the Admiralty and the Secretary of State for War speaks for the Army Council.
We are living in times of very great danger. We have immense responsibilities scattered all over the world and a task of defence that is almost staggering in its magnitude and in the possibilities of danger which are involved. Only the most prudent, cautious foreign policy, coupled for a good many years, I fear, with very great efforts made patriotically by every element in the country, can see us through. Personally, I should like to express my appreciation of the line which the Opposition have taken with regard to the Defence Estimates, a line which was prompted, I think, not so much by considerations of electoral prudence as of genuine concern for the safety of their country. In that situation surely we ought to make quite certain that the efforts we make are not misdirected and the sacrifices we make are not wasted.
§ 8.21 p.m.
§ Mr. Dodd
I think the House is grateful to the right hon. Gentleman the Leader of the Liberal Opposition for initiating this Debate to-day. The Debate has shown, I feel, that there is some doubt among Members as to what are the actual duties and responsibilities of the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence. What he said at the opening of the Debate on a question of order and what he has said in reply to the Debate has left the House in some doubt as to exactly what are his powers and duties. His duties as Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence cover a wide ramification of interests. They could be said to range from aircraft to aspirins and from bombs to buttons. But the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence must surely be responsible for the whole ramification of Defence, no matter to what Department any part of it belongs. In the last War every Government Department, the Ministry of Health, the Ministry of Agriculture, the Home Office and the Board of Trade, was affected, and they would be affected again.
I do not think the House is clear as to the duties of the Minister or thinks that he is only there to co-ordinate the three fighting Services. He has said that he has dealt with the question of supply for the time being. He is to be congratulated on the manner in which things have gone up to date. There has been a minimum of disorganisation throughout industry—some was bound to occur—compared with what there would have been if the work had been left over until the possible outbreak of war. But can the Minister advise the various heads of Departments? We are not clear as to that. I think he did say that he was in a position to advise the various Departments, but we ought to be clear as to whether he co-ordinates the views or is in a position of advising both the permanent staffs and permanent officials and other Ministers connected with the various Departments.
This country has for a long time allowed things to drift without any great effort to make alterations, and when alterations come and preparations are made they naturally raise a great deal more interest than if they had been done in the ordinary way of Departmental work. One may say that the country has been living in a state of optimism, if an optimist can be described as a man who does not mind 2972 what happens as long as it happens to somebody else. The air raid precautions are the one thing which is troubling all people's minds at the present time. Whether they are rich or poor, agriculturists or industrialists, all are perturbed. This is a problem which the Government are confronting, and which will be solved at the earliest possible moment, but everything cannot be done at once. There are many factors which have to be taken into account from the civil point of view, by the Government, by municipalities or by industrialists, and precautions must be taken and preparations made. A question was put to the Chancellor of the Exchequer some time ago as to the allowances that industrialists should receive upon their Income Tax on account of capital spent upon air raid precautions. That is one small matter on which industrialists are very much alive and would very much like to have clear guidance.
The Ministry of Transport will be affected to a very great extent, and industry and municipalities are also involved in this direction. With air raid precautions there must be the greatest facility for movement. It has been stated this afternoon that anti-aircraft batteries and Territorial divisions are not mobile compared with the majority of aircraft, although they should be essentially mobile forces. It is intended that they should be so, and in that case they would be used for the defence of large cities and towns, and of buildings and factories necessary for manufacture in time of war. The Ministry must he alive to the difficulties of the defence of cities. I have in mind the towns and cities of the West Riding of Yorkshire, East Lancashire and the Midlands, where communication is almost impossible in time of peace, never mind under conditions of aircraft attack.
Some time ago the Government announced that they were prepared to make a grant of 75 per cent. towards the strengthening of weak bridges and the widening of others. Many hundreds of bridges in the Midlands and in East Lancashire are quite incapable of carrying the traffic which they should, and under conditions of attack from the air, although they would be essential parts of our defence, they would not be able to stand the strain. They would dislocate the 2973 whole organisation of ground preparation for attack from the air. Many of the bridges are too small or too narrow. Some of the machines which have been designed and which it is proposed to use are not suitable for road conditions. I have had experience of some of them. To give a simple case, I would mention that I have recently been trying out a new mechanical truck in camp. It is very nice on the main road, but as soon as you get off the main road you cannot get it through a gate into a field. I am told: "In time of war you would knock the gate down"; well, perhaps you would, but 99 per cent. of British fields would have a bridge, and one wheel would soon be over the edge of the bridge unless you had a tractor. The machine would not be as efficient as a single horse or two-horse limber.
In regard to workshops and factories earmarked for Government construction work, whatever the Department, the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence can be helpful. I cannot see that there was any necessity, as has been the case, for factories which have been taken over already built, reconditioned and supplied with goods and commodities to make them fully equipped, for the work then to be done out of the area in which the factory was built. There is no reason why the whole of the work should not be given locally in order to find employment. Most of those factories have been placed in distressed or semi-distressed areas. I appreciate what it means for a Government Department to give out in bulk a large contract for the painting or repair of woodwork, the laying of floors, the reconstruction of pipes, or for communications of one kind or another, but the purpose of these factories at the same time as being a Defence matter, is to find employment in the distressed areas, and there is no reason why that work should not be given out in those distressed areas as far as possible.
In the course of the Debate, mention has been made of the supply of oil from coal. That matter is undoubtedly costing a great deal of money at the present time and may lead us a very long way. When I pass through English cities and see the change over which is now going on from electric tramways to oil or petrol-driven omnibuses, it often occurs to me that there is a degree of risk in making a change 2974 over of that kind at a moment when you are looking for every line of defence. There is no reason why such a change should not be from tramways to trackless trams, using British coal in the manufacture of electricity.
A question which interests me more particularly than any is the defence of this country by the Territorial Army. Nothing has been said during the Debate about what is the main line of defence when the Regular Army will be abroad on garrison work and the Navy will be at sea. The whole defence of this country will be handed over to the Territorial Army. Air defence is to be in the hands of the aircraft Divisions, amounting in all to two Divisions which, in my opinion, is not a sufficient number. I know that greater progress cannot be made at the moment. While mechanisation is taking place there is no doubt that those two Divisions are a long way from being equipped with the essential material for their completion. If there is one problem of the first importance it is the immediate equipment of those Divisions. It is essential that men should be trained, but that cannot take place without the proper equipment and material. We were told in an announcement at Question Time what a tremendous increase there had been in recruiting for the anti-aircraft Divisions. That is very well, so far as it goes, but it means that, in large industrial areas, men are being recruited for the aircraft battalion at the expense of infantry battalions which have to be in a similar locality. That is detrimental to the battalions which have been established there for a great number of years.
I hold a commission at the present time in the largest Territorial battalion in the British Army. It is an infantry battalion, and has held a very high position for a long time. It has had the largest strength of any battalion during the past three years. We are in a large industrial area. One of the Battalions in the brigade in which we were, has been converted into a searchlight battalion. That is very admirable, and nobody raises any trouble about it, but so far as we are concerned, after nearly two years of discussion on defence, and of Debate after Debate, the sum total of the equipment with which we have been supplied amounts to two ground sheets per man instead of one, and two or three trucks which have been lent to us. We are not troubled with difficulties of 2975 recruitment in that battalion. But other battalions are and the whole Territorial Army is 50,000 men below strength. You will never get officers, non-commissioned officers or men unless it is made attractive to them to join the Territorial Army. It seems to me that, while the vast number of industrialists are prepared to assist in the growth of the Territorial Army, from the point of view alike of officers, noncommissioned officers and men, the lead must come from the Government.
One suggestion that I would make is with regard to contracts. At present, in the placing of Government contracts, no work is given out unless it is to a firm which employs a certain number of ex-service men and is a member of the King's Roll. The majority of firms fulfil these conditions, but in my opinion, and, I think, in the opinion of most people connected with industry, the usefulness of the King's Roll has passed its time. It is almost 20 years since the War finished, and the majority of the men who came back as ex-service men have become established and are consistently working in these various concerns. Moreover, a considerable number of men who were employed under the King's Roll after the cessation of hostilities have since become pensionable, and many have retired altogether from active industry. It seems to me that we might now substitute for the system of the King's National Roll something else which would cover the employment of men who are giving their time to the Territorial Army and are serving their country in that direction.
At the present time men cannot be got for the Territorial Army, and in many units it is very difficult to get officers. You cannot get officers to-day, with the attractions which are now offered. It is not that men are not willing to serve as officers, non-commissioned officers and men; they are; but endless difficulties and pinpricks are put in their way. I will give one instance. A Territorial officer going to camp to do his field training is granted £7 10s. for uniform allowance and he has to pay Income Tax even on that. He has also to pay Income Tax on the money he receives during his time in camp. A subaltern cannot live in camp on the pay he receives during that period. The same applies all the way through to the lower ranks of warrant officers and to the non-commissioned officers. They 2976 do not receive even their expenses while they are in camp. The lowest paid private is unable to leave his family with any degree of comfort. When he goes away, the sacrifice is not his only; his wife suffers during the fortnight that he is away training at camp. She has to remain at home while he sacrifices what is very often his holiday period. I have seen posters: "Join the Territorial Army and have 14 days in camp at the seaside." That is about the biggest insult that the Territorial Army can receive. The most efficient camp that I have known since the War was a camp on Salisbury Plain. The men enjoyed it, and the work was very efficient, showing better results than any so-called holiday camp at the seaside. The men do not want holiday camps; they join the Territorial Army for work, and they do work. The officer has invariably a business to conduct, and he takes part in the Territorial Army on a voluntary basis; he joins purely and simply from a sense of duty and comradeship. I know men who have to travel 20 or 25 miles across the moors, usually in winter when training is on in the drill halls, and who are hours late getting home, while they spend a portion of their summer holidays in camp.
In my opinion the Territorial Army cannot be run in the same way as the Regular Army. The type of man is different in each case. I cast no aspersions on the one or the other, but their whole setting is entirely different, and the matter should be considered on its merits. You cannot in peace time run a Territorial Army on promotion by seniority; there should be at any rate openings and opportunities for promotion by merit. This applies to all units. Promotion of that character would open up a wider field and would bring in a vast number of men who could join and become officers in the Territorial Army. I am not suggesting that it is necessary to do as is done very often in the Regular Army, that is to say, to retire men who may be passed over. Such a thing is quite unnecessary in the Territorial Army. I consider that, in order to improve recruitment, there should be for all ranks. whether officers, non - commissioned officers or men, some greater reward than is now given. It is not a question of pounds, shillings and pence, but the number of honours that have been distributed to Territorial officers in past 2977 years has been at an absolute minimum, while the only thing the men can hope for is, at rare intervals, a Coronation or Jubilee medal, and an efficiency medal after 12 years' continuous service. We have in the Territorial Army a great number of officers, and there is some co-ordination between the Regular Army and the Territorial Army. The Regular officers who attend in camp with the Territorial Army are of two varieties—the one who comes for a holiday because he does not think the Territorial Army knows anything at all, and the other who is anxious to help and who makes a fine and magnificent contribution to the work that is done.
I was particularly anxious to raise this question because this is just the time when all the troops are going to camp for their summer training. Some battalions have already been. This is a matter which is in the hands both of the Minister for Co-ordination of Defence and of the War Office, and it is a matter of extreme importance. Men gladly join the Territorial Army and go away to camp, to find that they are not even supplied in the mess with knives, forks and spoons. They have few of the amenities of life, very insufficient allowances, and not much to keep them happy and contented among themselves in camp. They are given uniforms which the Regular Army would be ashamed of. No man can take a pride in being a member of what is really the first line of defence of this country when he is sent out with the equipment that is provided for him at the present time. I think a great deal could be done by making the camps more attractive. The men do not want less work; they want to spend as much time on training as they can, with a minimum number of men left in camp, and they are prepared to work and do their jobs.
There is one final thing that I want to say. In the defence companies which have been instituted you have men who have had years of experience, many of them in the Regular Army and all in the Territorial Army, men who have been non-commissioned officers and warrant officers. To-day they are assembled and go to the drill hall as a defence company, but they are not allowed to drill, they are not equipped with rifles, and they are not even supposed to shoot. They are supposed to have a bounty of £5 in 2978 case of mobilisation for war. Here you see first-rate men, with marvellous training, retired simply because they have reached the age limit, and absolutely going to waste at a time when they might be of the utmost value. I hope that some change will be made so that these men will at any rate get some encouragement when they go to the drill hall as they do, and give up their time. At present they are not even paid their travelling expenses to get there. If we are to recognise that the defence of this country is to be handed over to the Territorial Army and to the aircraft divisions of the Territorial Army, we have to recognise that as a body the Territorial Army is worthy of the fullest consideration, and should be equipped adequately and made as strong and as fine a body as it possibly can be.
§ 8.44 p.m.
§ Lieut.-Commander Fletcher
Except that I gathered that the Minister was rather badly stung by the hon. and gallant Member for Wellingborough (Wing-Commander James), I, like the right hon. Member for Sparkbrook (Mr. Amery), find very little indeed to bite on in his speech. In fact, what one can gather from the speech of the Minister has to be gathered by inference. One thing, however, seemed to me to be very clear, and that is that the Minister has become a complete convert to the Committee of Imperial Defence. At the time of his appointment one of the Minister's duties was laid down as reporting on any shortcomings that he found in the work of the Committee of Imperial Defence. We realise from his speech to-day that he finds no shortcomings whatever. The Committee of Imperial Defence has swallowed the right hon. Gentleman whole. It has shown the same capacity for swallowing him as the Admiralty usually shows for swallowing any First Lord who may be appointed there. The War Office has never struck me as having quite the digestive quality of the Admiralty. The War Office will require far more peptic juice than they appear to have to swallow the particularly tough mouthful that they have got hold of in the present Secretary of State for War. There are no shortcomings at all in the Committee of Imperial Defence, so the Minister is relieved from that part of his duty and we can all be happy knowing 2979 that the Committee of Imperial Defence slumbers not nor sleeps.
But the speech definitely shows another thing—that the system of control in war time has not been settled. We have to wait and see how the war is going to be run, when it comes, but at any rate nothing has been done so far as to working out the relations between the military command and the civil government of the nation. We do not know under what system the war is going to be run. There were one or two passages in the speech which were very good examples of that ponderous style in which the Minister tells us nothing. We were told that in the next war the commanders of the three different Services will keep in touch with each other. That is one of the tremendous results that have been achieved by the right hon. Gentleman the past 18 months. Also, more praiseworthy still, efforts will be made not to send conflicting orders to these three different commanders. The outlook is certainly bright. In another passage relating to air raid precautions he told us that preparations in one zone must necessarily be more complicated than preparations in another zone. I also noticed that the right hon. Gentleman spoke about the whole vast field of problems involved in Imperial Defence, and quoted General Ludendorff on the "total" war. What he said in that respect indicates more clearly than anything else that has been said the need for far more effective co-ordination in these matters than anything that we have yet got.
I shrink from putting any more questions. The right hon. Baronet the Member for Caithness (Sir A. Sinclair) put a great many, and he had the satisfaction of being told that all his questions have been noted. He knows that, following the Minister's usual practice, that is the last he will ever hear about any of them. There are a few things that I hoped to hear touched upon and did not. There is the question of calcium carbide, an essential matter on which the House can get no information at all as to what is being done. Then there is the question of the location of industry. A Royal Commission has been set up to inquire into the matter. That is very satisfactory, but I imagine that the proceedings of the Commission will take time and we 2980 shall not get its report for some time, and then it will require consideration. What is being done meanwhile about the location of industry, and would it not be right and advisable that some Government Department or committee should have the right to advise, or have power of control, in this matter pending and without prejudice to the report of the Royal Commission? I think it is a matter that brooks no delay, and the Government should arm itself with powers pending the report.
I should like to say one word about the possible evacuation of large civil populations in time of war. I think a great opportunity offers itself to the Minister at this moment. On Friday the August Bank Holiday season will be beginning and either on Friday or Saturday or Monday I would quite seriously suggest to the right hon. Gentleman that he should visit one of the great London termini and see for himself the spectacle of a happy, good-tempered holiday crowd trying to get out of London, and then, having seen that picture, to imagine what the scene might be if the population of London had to be evacuated under the stress and fear of war. The scene that will be witnessed at any railway station during the coming week-end will be the most convincing proof of the utter inadequacy of any system of transport at all for the evacuation of a large civil population under war conditions.
There are two short points that I want to mention. First of all, the possibility certainly exists that we may have to import our food through the Western instead of the Eastern ports in time of war. What is being done in regard to an adequate road system of transport from those ports? There is also the question of refrigeration, because I believe only a very inadequate refrigerating plant exists in the West of England. That will certainly be a most important point in regard to supplies of food from the Western ports. I hope that the Minister, in spite of the reply given by the Prime Minister, will take into consideration the question of the Minister for Air being in this House and not in another place. On one occasion the reply was that he had so much to do that it was only fair that he should be in another place and should not be exposed to questions or criticism about what he was doing. In view of the fact that the Air Ministry has not 2981 only become almost the most important of the Defence Ministries but that its budget has now reached such a high figure, and will probably reach higher figures yet, it is only right that the Minister should be a Member of this House and should be exposed to questioning and should have to take part in the Debates on his Estimates. I hope that matter may be given further consideration.
If the review that the Minister gave of his work was not very lucid or convincing, I am not sure that it was his fault, because I cannot help remembering the White Paper out of which his appointment grew and, as an illustration of the lucidity of that White Paper, I should like to quote from the Preamble to it.
If war can be banished from the world these vast and world-wide interests"—that is the British Empire—will remain free from the dangers of attack.I think the Minister has done his very best ever since his appointment to live up to the high standard of the penetratingly just observation that if war can be avoided there will be peace. I do not think there is equal force or lucidity in Lord Baldwin's pledge that our Air Force should be as strong as any within striking distance. That pledge is still unfulfilled. It would be rather comforting to have more definite prospects held out as to when that pledge of the late Prime Minister is going to be implemented. I said that the speech showed that the Minister had been swallowed by the Committee of Imperial Defence, and I think we have to remember that the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence was appointed in response to the pressure of public opinion and not in response to any wish of, or any pressure of any sort from, the Defence Services. The three Defence Services never intended to let the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence do very much.
Sometimes when I hear the right hon. Gentleman speaking and he tells us how very nice he has found the generals, and how very pleasant he has found the admirals, and how very happy his relations with them are, I get the impression of a rather sleek, black cat which has been adopted by three offices, and, knowing that there is a saucer of milk in each one of them, is happy in going from office to office for its saucer of milk and to rub 2982 itself against the legs of the admirals and generals and to purr as they scratch his back. I did not anticipate that they would let him do very much. He has not got a staff. Three officers appointed upon the Joint Planning Committee do not constitute a staff. The right hon. Gentleman is never going to be allowed to have a staff, because if he had a staff he might begin to do something, and that would upset the three Defence Ministries very seriously indeed and throw them out of their stride in the great work they do in making all the wrong preparations for the next war.
A great deal has been said about the Minister being mainly a Minister for Supply. There is a very clear line of demarcation indeed between the Co-ordination of Defence and Supply, and there is no purpose to be served at all by trying to deal with these two problems under one and the same Minister. I notice that in the speech which the Minister made some little time ago he said that he had got on so well with his work that we have now got to the planning stage.
§ Lieut.-Commander Fletcher
Better still—richer and richer—we have passed it. I am glad to hear that that is so, but is he directing the planning, or, if not, who is directing it? May I point out that if he is trying to get satisfaction from the fact that we have now passed the planning stage, Germany passed the planning stage some three years ago, and, therefore, we are some three years behind with our plans, let alone with our preparations or our armaments? We are that much behind with our plans, and, if we are three years behind with our plans, I think that one of these days we may anticipate something very unpleasant as a result. The right hon. Gentleman may yet be reminded of another speech which he made as far back as 1927, when he said: "You cannot negotiate with a typhoon." He will find, in negotiating with people whose plans are three years ahead of his own, something similar to negotiating after a typhoon. He will find himself in the centre of what we call a revolving storm.
The Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence—and I think that this fact comes out in every speech he makes and in the tributes he pays—has really become the publicity man of the three fighting Ser- 2983 vices. They have followed the example of the railways who have appointed a public relations officer or publicity man or something or other. The Services have swept away all that idea of his doing any co-ordinating and they have constituted him the publicity man to the three Services, who so obligingly comes down here and puts over anything that they want put over. He never speaks as the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence. He speaks rather like a very genial and rotund chairman of what I might call the Army and Navy Stores, very genial with his white apron, explaining what large and fine stocks he has in each department. He is well able to meet with the abnormal rush at Christmas or anything like that; he is always looking ahead, his stocks very well laid in. I have heard American students sing the song, "After we have finished commencement, what are we going to commence." I have been waiting ever since his appointment to find out what the right hon. Gentleman is co-ordinating. I have not succeeded in finding out very much about it. I believe that one of his duties at the time he was appointed was, when he found any Departmental delay taking place, to see that they got a move on.
We have an example of his work in that respect in regard to the Fleet Air Arm. That is a case where, I think, he might have decided that delay was taking place in coming to a decision, and he might have remembered that part of his duties which instructs him to sweep away delay. We have gone on month after month without any decision being come to on this vital matter of the control of the Fleet Air Arm. We have reached such a position in international affairs that the Prime Minister has told us at that Box that a word might start an avalanche. That is the position to which the National Government have brought this country. A whispered word might start an avalanche, and in that state of affairs the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence and the heads of the two Services concerned have shown themselves unable to come to a decision on the question of the Fleet Air Arm, although confusion in that respect might very easily go far to losing us a war in the early stages, if any confusion or uncertainty or dissatisfaction existed as to the control of that arm of the Service.
§ Major Procter
Is it not the fact that the party with which the hon. and gallant Gentleman is associated has done everything possible to prevent anything being done in the way of our Defence?
§ Lieut.-Commander Fletcher
I do not happen to know if that is the case or not, but if it is the case that the Navy has been obstructive in the matter, then I am at a loss to understand why the Minister has not swept that obstruction out of the way and insisted upon a decision.
§ Lieut.-Commander Fletcher
Unless cooperation and co-ordination exist in peace, do not let it be thought for one moment that the impulse of a common aim in war will overcome the friction of divergent opinion as to how to win the war. You will either get this co-operation and co-ordination in time of peace, or, if you do not get it in time of peace, you certainly will not get it in time of war. You will never remove the divergencies that exist at the time war breaks out, and war will offer endless scope for friction. The time for removing the possibilities of divergence and friction is in peace time. It is no good waiting until war breaks out and thinking that it will be possible to remove them then. The Minister spoke about the system of control in war. Everyone now is abundantly confident, from what has been said from all quarters of the House to-day, that the office of Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence will never stand the test of war. Is there anyone who imagines that, if we find ourselves involved again in a major European war, the office of the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence will be one of the essential factors in our system of control of war? Of course, it will not. It will never stand the test of war.
When the appointment was made it was clear that the chiefs of staff had won. I remember a Conservative newspaper coming out with great headlines across its middle page on the day of the appointment: "No interference with Service chiefs." That was recognised at once and rejoiced over. The chiefs of staff are determined that their committee shall still rule the roost. In these circumstances the Minister for the Co-ordination 2985 of Defence has an impossible task. No one man can co-ordinate plans and at the same time be chairman of the principal Officers Supply Committee. The chairman of that committee alone has a one-man job, and a big task. He has to look after industrial expansion, raw materials, the distribution of contracts and all the questions arising from them and from labour. He has what the Americans would call quite an assignment. How can anyone imagine that he can carry out those duties and be able to do anything about the Co-ordination of Defence? Perhaps the time may come when the Minister may be free to have a little recreation and be able to dabble in matters of strategy. Up to now his speeches have been about jigs and gauges, factories and costs. Perhaps one can look forward to a new dispensation when his speeches will tell us something about strategy, plans and co-ordination. Then such dull matters as supply will be things of the past for him.
It is no good the Minister saying that all is rosy about the supply question, unless we know that the problems of supply are based on proper strategic war plans. Our present war plans seem to be based upon the independent demands of each Service and not upon co-ordinated strategic war plans, and I do not see how the Minister can ever have had time to consider any of these problems for the co-ordination of the three Services. Let me mention three points. I have already referred to one, the Fleet Air Arm. The Minister has been unable to settle that question. Is the defence of the communications in narrow seas a Naval or an Air responsibility, or a joint responsibility? Again, what is the function of the Air Force in coast defence? Who is ultimately responsible in that matter? It is not good waiting until war breaks out to decide what is the function of the three Services. These matters have to be settled now while we have yet time.
The Government reject the notion of a Minister of Supply, and say that they have done all that is necessary by appointing the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence. He is armed with no authority, as has been brought out in to-day's Debate, but although he has no authority, he has to settle vexed questions like the priorities between the three Services; he has to place enormous orders, 2986 and he has to be able to control costs and prices. So far from the handling of the programme of £1,500,000,000 of rearmament being too much for him when the Air Minister goes on sick leave, the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence takes on the Air Ministry and runs that in addition to all his other duties. I am reminded of the man who when taking on a busy job asked whether there was a clay field handy, because he thought he would like to make a few bricks in his spare time. I wonder how the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence occupies his spare time.
Let me say a few words on the question of profiteering, which seems to me to have been most inadequately dealt with. I must be careful to keep in order. I should have thought that there was a good case for the Government having directors on the boards of the big armament firms, which have such enormous contracts from the Government. It is clear that labour unrest is bound to follow if public opinion is not satisfied on this question of profiteering. Whenever the question is raised, all that we get is a bland assurance, given in the blandest way of the right hon. Gentleman, that no arms manufacturer would ever do anything so ungentlemanly and so unpatriotic as to make excessive profits out of the country's need. I do not think that is good enough, and I know that my hon. Friends on these benches think that it is not good enough. I should like to ask what is being done about the recommendations of the Select Committee on Estimates in regard to profiteering, and especially as regards sub-contracts and what are known as on-costs.
I can only say, in conclusion, that the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence cannot possibly continue to carry this burden unless it is the case that his appointment is very largely camouflage. If he is expected to carry out a quarter of the duties nominally assigned to him I feel certain that he would be unable to do it, and that is why I suspect that there is a good deal of camouflage about it. We require evidence that planning is separated from supply, that the functions of the three Services are being thought out and allocated, and that war plans are being prepared. Above all, and far the most important, we require evidence that the 2987 system of control, civil and military, in war time, is being thought out and a skeleton of that system is being set up.
§ 9.13 p.m.
I want to put a question to my right hon. Friend, and I am emboldened to do so because when he was answering the hon. Member for Oxford University (Sir A. Salter) he said that the problem of feeding the people of this country in time of war had a high place in the consideration of the Government. The question I want to put is this: Will he use his good offices and his influence with the Air Ministry to ensure that when sites for new aerodromes are being sought, as little damage as possible will be done to agriculture, and that they will choose downland or similar poor land rather than first-class agricultural land? It is a big problem, because many new aerodromes are being sought for and the cumulative effects of ruthless use of compulsory powers would inflict very great damage on the industry. I will not argue the matter but will leave it as a question to my right hon. Friend who, although he referred to himself as a decayed lawyer, has, I know, one of the most acute minds in the House. I only ask for an assurance that when sites for aerodromes are being sought due regard will be paid to agricultural interests.
§ 9.15 p.m.
§ Sir Percy Harris
I think the Debate has justified the use of the last day of Supply in discussing the Department presided over by the right hon. Gentleman. We are proposing to reduce his salary, but I can assure him that it is not because of any personal antipathy to himself. There is no more popular Member in the House of Commons. He is a perfect House of Commons man and embodies the best traditions of the House. He is always sweetly reasonable, and good humoured, and always takes criticism in such good part. But I am afraid he has taken his office without power. He relinquished the more remunerative post of Attorney-General, no doubt inspired by a sense of public duty. But there he is, in this position, manufactured to meet a public clamour. There was a long controversy led by the right hon. Member for Epping (Mr. Churchill). Many names were mentioned for the post of Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence, and the 2988 right hon. Gentleman's appointment came somewhat as a surprise. He boasts that his staff is small, and no one can say in these days of large expenditure that he has been extravagant in that respect.
Our complaint against him is that he has not taken his position seriously enough. He seems to regard himself as a fifth wheel of the coach, and that all he has to do is to run around and make himself pleasant to the high and powerful Departments whose work it was for him to co-ordinate. These Departments have great traditions behind them, and highly organised and efficient staffs. They are naturally jealous of their prerogatives—the Admiralty, the War Office, the Air Ministry, the Home Office and the Ministry of Transport. One of the reasons for the clamour in the House and in the country was a feeling that the nation was not getting the most efficient work out of its defence Departments. The right hon. Member for Sparkbrook (Mr. Amery) has said quire rightly that the House has been profoundly disappointed with the statement of the right hon. Gentleman. A great part of his speech was taken up in defending the Committee of Imperial Defence. With great respect I do not think the Committee of Imperial Defence needs any defence. It was built up before the War, justified its existence during the War, and is recognised as capable of working out the strategy of our Imperial Defence policy.
The right hon. Gentleman had a different but not a competing job. His duty was to bring these great organisations into one, to prevent overlapping and friction, of which the House was conscious and of which the: Services complained. The Debates on the Defence. Estimates are of course limited by the Rules of Order. We could not debate the defence problem as a whole, and the right hon. Gentleman was appointed to this new post in order to get over that difficulty. I am afraid from his speech we feel that, in spite of these 18 months of tactful and good humoured work, he has not brought real co-ordination any nearer. The right hon. Member for Caithness (Sir A. Sinclair), who opened the discussion, dealt mainly with home defence. That was one of the special reasons for raising this discussion this afternoon. The Minister dealt with many things, with the 2989 arrangements to he made, the responsibilities of Service Departments, commanders in the field, he roamed generally over Imperial Defence, but ignored most of the points made by the right hon. Member for Caithness.
I have a very vivid memory of the outbreak of War in 1914. While the Expeditionary Force was going overseas, silently without friction, largely because of the genius of Lord Haldane, Lord Haig and Lord French, the civil population was in great turmoil and great crowds gathered outside Buckingham Palace, impeding the police and the movement of traffic, anxious to know how best they could serve the nation. The population had no experience of what a great war meant. The Government at that time had to deal with problems which were quite new. The Government can make no such plea to-day. We have had four years terrible experience which should teach us a lesson of what is likely to happen in case we should be faced with the outbreak of another war. I remember that two days after the outbreak of the War I was rash enough to write a letter to the "Times." Strange to say they gave it great prominence. I made certain proposals for the best use of the civil population and the enthusiasm which existed. The result was that my letter box was crowded with thousands of letters from all parts of the country from persons all anxious to serve.
It became necessary to create an organisation to deal with this correspondence. Some men had curious ideas of what was likely to happen. Wealthy business men anticipated riots, but at no time was the civil population more quiet and more peaceful than in the first weeks of the War. Others anticipated great unemployment, and the Prince of Wales Fund was opened and a large sum raised to deal with the problem of unemployment. However, unemployment was conspicuous by its absence, and labour was quickly absorbed by new industries. Training corps sprang up all over the country; in every town and village men were busy preparing for service. I remember that H. G. Wells and Conan Doyle in their respective villages were drilling and training men. It developed on such a large scale that the War Office had to prohibit all kinds of volunteers and training corps and the prohibition remained good until November.
2990 In November there was either a scare of invasion, or it became necessary to send every available man overseas, and Lord Kitchener decided to make use of all voluntary services. I was appointed along with Lord Desborough to make use of all this voluntary effort. At one time there were something like 1, 000,000 men organised and trained throughout the length of the land. Some hon. Members will remember ancient gentlemen wearing armlets drilling in the various towns and villages. These men were over military age, and my colleagues and I were charged with the duty of organising and providing machinery for making the best use of their services. There was no wool cloth available. There was a shortage of rifles, and these men had to use rifles of all types. But they did great service. They dug the trenches round London, and towards the end of the war mounted a large number of anti-aircraft guns and relieved the regular Forces. But I do not want to deal with this ancient history. What I want to impress on the House is the need of learning from experience. It is one of the duties of the Minister to think out plans for making use of the whole civil population in time of war.
§ Sir P. Harris
We should not be as greatly surprised as we were in 1914. We want to be satisfied that the industrial life of the country has been thought out. My right hon. Friend the Member for Caithness raised the point as to the location of industry in the Metropolitan area. We have a Commission sitting to inquire into the whole problem of the location of industry but that will take time. It will be 18 months or two years before they can bring out their report. But our industry is highly organised. How far has the Minister worked out how best our industrial organisation can be utilised in time of war? We do not want to wait until a crisis comes before thinking out a policy. The same applies to transport. One of the jobs of the volunteer force was to make use of and organise our transport, not only our railways and commercial transport, but private cars.
Motor transport has enormously developed during the last 20 years. How far have the Government worked out plans for making use of our motor cars, private and commercial, in time of war? If war comes, the whole industrial system 2991 is put out of gear. The motor industry has a right to know how far the Government have thought out plans to utilise our transport service to the best advantage. The Minister ought to have a say in the development of our road system. We had a Debate the other day on the Ministry of Transport. Transport is an integral part of national defence. It may be necessary in London and other industrial centres to evacuate our population rapidly. We have seen some of the appalling things that have happened in Spain and the panic of the civilian population. If the tragedy of an attack on London took place and if there were panic—incidentally, the best way to prevent panic is for the Minister to prove to the population that he has thought out plans to deal with panic—but if there were panic, to protect, move and feed a population of 9,500,000 would be a gigantic undertaking, and it should be thought out now.
The right hon. Gentleman has surrounded himself with a certain amount of mystery and secrecy. Naturally he is inclined to meet challenges for information with the answer that it would not be in the public interest to disclose his plans. That may apply in reference to expeditionary forces, arms and means of attack as opposed to defence; it is not a good argument in dealing with the problem of home defence. We reveal no information to any potential enemy by proving to our own people that the right hon. Gentleman has plans to deal with every phase of our social and industrial life if we are faced with the misfortune of an outbreak of war. That means that all the Departments of State should be brought together to act as one whole. The right hon. Gentleman rather contemptuously swept aside a suggestion that there should be a totalitarian policy for dealing with an emergency. We are a democratic people and like to feel that we have a share in the management of our own defence, and the right thing for the Minister to do now is to make clear to the nation through this House that he has brought the various Departments into a working harmony, and that he has a common policy for home defence.
§ 9.34 p.m.
§ Major Procter
It seems to me that one of the most pressing problems of the hour is the problem of fuel supply and its relation to our internal transport. I am well aware that it is now a well settled policy 2992 of the Navy to confine its fuel to oil, largely due to the fact of the greater heating power per pound of oil in comparison with coal, and due also to the fact that the use of oil gives a greater cruising radius to every ship that uses it. If hon. Members will cast their minds back to the last War, they will remember that it was not long before practically the whole of the private cars of the people were put off the roads owing to the fact that it was essential to conserve the fuel supplies for our Fighting Services. I would like to know whether, in the wide survey made by the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence, attention has been given to the dislocation of our transport services that might occur in any future war from the same cause as dislocated them during the last War. It must be remembered that a great deal of the movement of our goods now takes place by motor transport, whereas in 1914 motor transport was a negligible factor in our commercial life. Unless something is done to find an alternative fuel to oil, there will be a dislocation of our motor transport and the cessation of all private transport, and it will be very difficult to move to the centres of our population the food that is required not only to keep the people well fed, but satisfied, and free from panic.
I know from words spoken by him that apparently the Minister for the Co-ordination of Defence is not very much in favour of the extension of hydrogenation plants and low-temperature carbonisation plants as an alternative to oil supplies. He said in his speech this evening that if the number of those plants was increased, they would become a greater target for the enemy. That may be so, owing to the construction of our hydrogenation plants as at present. At the moment, we have to put those plants in the neighbourhood of coal mines, and they are all above the surface. It seems to me that steps should now be taken to put all the stores down in the mines, where they will be free from air attack, and to have only the machinery above ground, if necessary—for I am not sure whether it is even necessary to have any part of the hydrogenation plant above ground. I think that it could be put underground and thus freed from the dangers of air attack.
I am not in favour of hydrogenation under the present system as a peace policy, for it is a highly expensive and 2993 uneconomic proposition, owing to the high capital charges of the plant; but as a Defence measure, it is worthy of serious consideration and extension. If there be a war, it will be essential to have large supplies of fuel. Wherever coke is made, for every ton of coal that is turned into hard coke or into smokeless fuel, five cwts. of volatile matter is released. At the present time, with the greatly increased industrial activity and pressure of work, there are huge demands for coke and steel, and there will be an immense amount of free hydrogen which, in the past, in low-temperature carbonisation, has been put into the air because, owing to our archaic laws concerning gas companies, these producing plants have been unable to put gas pipes under the roads, as they have been forbidden by Act of Parliament to do so, and a great deal of this gas has been wasted.
What I suggest for the consideration of the Minister is that preparations should now be made to turn the whole of our internal transport system from petrol or liquid fuel consumption to the consumption of coal gas. Let plant for the production of coal gas be laid down in the neighbourhood of our mines, and right along the high roads to and from our cities, at distances of 10 or 20 miles; instead of having petrol pumps as at present, have gas laid on so that lorries could use that gas, which they could carry in a form of container, getting a new container every 10 miles, thus utilising the coal gas, of which there will be an abundance owing to the production of coke, and helping to save essential fuel supplies for our Defence Services.
I am certain that this problem has been thought out even in my own constituency, where great and fine minds conversant with the production of the by-products of coal, things which are essentially a war industry, could devise and give to the Minister, if necessary, the complete plans whereby in the event of war, we could switch over from oil fuel to gaseous fuel. That, of course, would necessitate the designing of a new carburettor so that the 2 per cent. explosive mixture could be used even in private motor cars. As these things cannot be worked out in war time, I put this problem, in all modesty, for the consideration of the technical experts so that they may consider the coordination of Defence with transport.
§ 9.43 p.m.
§ Sir T. Inskip
With the leave of the House, I would like to make some observations in reply to a few questions that have been put to me since I addressed the House. The further speeches that have been made have indicated the very wide variety of topics which are supposed to be attached to my duties. The hon. Baronet the Member for South West Bethnal Green (Sir P. Harris) expressed regret that I had not adequately replied to the questions put by his right hon. Friend. Perhaps I may remind the hon. Baronet that his right hon. Friend addressed to me many questions which were of such a character that even the right hon. Gentleman himself did not expect an answer to them, so that I think I may be excused for not having attempted to answer them. Let me refer to two or three of the questions of which I was able to take note. The right hon. Gentleman asked how many batteries there were in our anti-aircraft defences, what was the calibre of the guns and what was their range? Is it suggested that I should answer those questions? Suppose that any hon. Member wanted to look at those batteries and to take photographs and notes of them, do hon. Members think that the authorities would allow even the hon. Baronet to engage in that activity? Exactly the same results would be produced if I were to inform the House of those details. Indeed the right hon. Gentleman, to do him justice, said he would not expect an answer to those searching questions.
To give another illustration he said that the provision of the balloon barrage was hanging fire and that our balloons could rise to only 10,000 feet, while the French had a barrage that would rise to 20,000 feet. Does the right hon. Gentleman or the hon. Baronet expect me to discuss here the reasons why we should have a balloon barrage which rises to only 10,000 feet? To do so would surely be to give an undesirable advantage to those for whose reception the balloon barrage is intended, but I assure the right hon. Gentleman that it has a very definite purpose, and that if 10,000 feet has been selected as the greatest height to which this barrage should go, that has been done for a particular purpose in connection with the other defences of which it forms only a part.
2995 The other questions which the right hon. Gentleman put to me were of such a character and were poured out in such volume that I think hon. Members generally will assent to what my right hon. Friend the Member for Epping (Mr. Churchill) said, namely, that I could not be expected to answer them in this Debate. The hon. and gallant Member for Nuneaton (Lieut. - Commander Fletcher) suggested that when it was said that these matters would be noted, it meant that they would be noted and that that would be the end of it. I think the hon. and gallant Member does not do justice to those who are indeed paying attention to these various matters. He himself put a great number of questions. He began with a request for information about calcium carbide. That matter is the subject of an inquiry by a committee which is doing its best at my request to present its report not later than the middle of September. I hope we shall then be able to deal with any legislation which may be necessary. The hon. and gallant Member also asked what had been done about the location of industry and the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Caithness raised a similar point. The Commission may report and I think will report a great deal sooner than the time anticipated, and in any case, without statutory powers, it would be impossible to interfere with the rights of private persons in the selection of locations for industries, though I agree that something ought to be done to influence the location of industry as far as possible, in regard to places where industries may be easily defended. That is being considered and some provision made for taking steps in that direction.
I hardly know how to deal with the various suggestions and criticisms that have been made as to my powers or rather my lack of powers. They are criticisms which it is hardly proper for me to answer. If anybody ought to answer them, it is the Prime Minister, but I do wish to say, here and now, that I believe I have more power than hon. and right hon. Gentlemen think they can detect in the language of the White Paper. I listened to the remarks of the hon. and gallant Gentleman the Member for Nuneaton on that subject. His methods are not my methods. He seems to think that 2996 because my relations with the Chiefs of Staff are friendly and agreeable, therefore I must be a failure. Judging from the way in which the hon. and gallant Gentleman criticised me, I gather that his methods would be very different from those which I use but I believe my methods to be right and that they give me a power and an influence which is by no means negligible. I believe that anybody in my position, using the same methods and the powers which I have, can exercise a real influence upon the settlement of many of these questions which have been Ira rationed and I by no means consider that I ought to stand here in a white sheet, because there is no sign of any disturbance which would necessitate my separation from the generals or admirals or air marshals.
The hon. and gallant Member for Nuneaton, however, delivered himself of one sentence which surprised me, not by reason of its inaccuracy but by reason of its acuteness and accuracy. He said that supply must be based upon a proper strategic conception. I wonder whether, when he made that statement, he appreciated the fact that that is the real case for the concentration in one office of the duties of superintending supply and organising or considering the strategic conceptions which underlie supply. The question of supply is very often, indeed generally, connected with or dependent upon questions of policy which in themselves are strategic questions. To give one instance, the size of the Army, the use of an Expeditionary Force and the provision that has to be made for supplementing an Expeditionary Force, must depend on the provision made in advance of war for keeping a force of that size in the field. You cannot consider the two questions separately. They are closely interlocked, and when the hon. and gallant Member talked about my inability to perform two separate duties, I would point out that they are not so much two duties as two parts of the same duty.
Then I was told by the hon. and gallant Member that I had done nothing to prevent profiteering. If he has read the last report of the Public Accounts Committee he should be satisfied with the steps which the Air Ministry in particular have taken in connection with their contracts. I have never said what the hon. and gallant Member suggested I had said, namely, that no armament manufacturer ever 2997 made a profit. That, of course, is not true, nor would it be a good thing if it were true. One of the difficulties of getting to work the vast supply organisation which is now being set up is that you have to create new capacity. The manufacturers of the equipment which the forces need have not found it possible to continue in those lines of industry during the hard times through which they passed while disarmament was the main policy of the Government and there is no advantage in starving or depriving of a fair rate of profit those manufacturers upon whom this country must depend for the provision of vital equipment.
A good deal of criticism has been made of my statement concerning the arrangements with regard to passive defence. I have been given instances, which I was not aware of before the Debate, of the active planning and organisation which had taken place even before the stage which has now been reached of consulting local authorities as to their co-operation with the Government. To give a few illustrations almost at random, I am told that, in connection with fire brigade services, designs of plant have been completed and initial bulk orders have been given for equipment which will be available for local fire brigade services, to which, of course, the Government will pass on the supplies. Similar orders have been placed for mechanical vehicles that are required by the fire brigades. An initial order for 100 miles of hose is being placed, and steps have been taken to provide fire brigades with incendiary bombs, in order that they may observe the effects and practise the steps that are necessary to cope with them. I might go on, page after page, informing the House of the actual steps that have been taken. As to the suggestion that my right hon. Friend the Home Secretary or my hon. Friend the Parliamentary Secretary have been doing nothing until this moment, a great deal of action, not mere planning, has been undertaken and brought, I think, to a fruitful end.
It is right, as I have another two or three minutes, that I should come back to the question raised by the right hon. Gentleman about anti-aircraft defence, which, I am told, has been the substance of this Debate. I have so often stated the position that I really think that any hon. Member who has listened to me must be well aware of the measures that 2998 have been taken and of the organisation which is responsible for the active defences. As everybody knows, the guns and the searchlights are under the control of the Army, and the fighter aircraft are under the control of the Air Ministry, but in order to show how these plans, which I have announced to the House once or twice, are still under consideration and are being carried to completion, I may tell the House that a senior Army Staff Officer, with special qualifications and experience, has been appointed to the staff of the Air Officer Commanding in Chief, Fighter Command, in order to act as liaison between these two Departments that are responsible for preparing antiaircraft defences.
I am told that searchlights or projectors are short. Of course they are short, but the fault is that the orders were not given early enough. It is one of the branches of supply which has been most difficult to organise. These projectors and searchlights are coming along in large quantities now, and the difficulty in placing them out to the Territorial divisions is that there has been an absence of accommodation. That is now being provided. So far as guns are concerned, the guns are now coming out in large quantities, and the arrangements for forging and mounting them are at a stage which will enable the production to proceed. I recognise, as everybody does, that it would be much pleasanter to be able to give everybody the equipment they want at the moment, and if that could be done there would be no problem of supply. The fact is that these questions of supply are now at a stage when delivery is our experience, and we are in advance of the proposition which the right hon. Member for Epping laid down in one of his speeches, when he said, that in the first year you make your plans, in the next year you lay down your plants and organise your tools, and in the third year you get your deliveries. We have just begun the second year, and we are already getting deliveries of these things. When hon. and right hon. Gentlemen rather taunt me with not having provided the necessary anti-aircraft equipment, all that I can say is that I believe that the supply organisation to which I have referred has done a remarkable task in organising the capacity for providing the firms that are qualified to make this equipment, 2999 and that, being in the period of delivery which we have now reached, it will be possible in the early autumn to appeal for that full flood of recruits which up to now has been held back, partly by lack of accommodation and partly by lack of the necessary equipment. I hope that these supplementary observations which I have made may do something to allay
§ the anxieties which the hon. Baronet felt. In reply to my hon. and gallant Friend the Member for the New Forest (Major Mills), I will certainly ask the Air Ministry to give attention to the considerations which he mentioned.
§ Question put, "That'£244,016' stand part of the Resolution."
§ The House divided: Ayes, 306; Noes, 141.3001
|Division No. 313.]||AYES.||[10.0 p.m.|
|Acland-Troyte, Lt.-Col. G. J.||Craven-Ellis, W.||Guy, J. C. M.|
|Adams, S. V. T. (Leeds, W.)||Croft, Brig.-Gen. Sir H. Page||Hacking, Rt. Hon. D. H.|
|Agnew, Lieut.-Comdr. P. G.||Crooke, J. S.||Hannah, I. C.|
|Allen, Col. J. Sandeman (B'knhead)||Crookshank, Capt. H. F. C.||Hannon, Sir P. J. H.|
|Amery, Rt. Hon. L. C. M. S.||Croom-Johnson, R. P.||Harbord, A.|
|Anstruther-Gray, W. J.||Cross, R. H.||Harvey, Sir G.|
|Apsley, Lord||Crossley, A. C.||Haslam, H. C. (Horncastle)|
|Aske, Sir R. W.||Crowder, J. F. E.||Haslam, Sir J. (Bolton)|
|Assheton, R.||Cruddas, Col. B.||Heilgers, Captain F. F. A.|
|Astor, Major Hon. J. J. (Dover)||Culverwell, C. T.||Heneage, Lieut.-Colonel A. P.|
|Astor, Viscountess (Plymouth, Sutton)||Davidson, Viscountess||Hepburn, P. G. T. Buchan-|
|Astor, Hon. W. W. (Fulham, E.)||Davies, C. (Montgomery)||Hepworth, J.|
|Baldwin-Webb, Col. J.||Davies, Major Sir G. F. (Yeovil)||Herbert, A. P. (Oxford U.)|
|Balfour, G. (Hampstead)||Davison, Sir W. H.||Herbert, Major J. A. (Monmouth)|
|Balfour, Capt. H. H. (Isle of Thanet)||De Chair, S. S.||Herbert, Capt. Sir S. (Abbey)|
|Balniel, Lord||De la Bère, R.||Higgs, W. F.|
|Barrie, Sir C. C.||Denman, Hon. R. D.||Hills, Major Rt. Hon. J. W. (Ripon)|
|Baxter, A. Beverley||Denville, Alfred||Holmes, J. S.|
|Beamish, Rear-Admiral T. P. H.||Dodd, J. S.||Hope, Captain Hon. A. O. J.|
|Bait, Sir A. L.||Doland, G. F.||Hopkinson, A.|
|Bennett, Sir E. N.||Dorman-Smith, Major Sir R. H.||Hore-Belisha, Rt. Hon. L.|
|Bernays, R. H.||Drewe, C.||Horsbrugh, Florence|
|Bird, Sir R. B.||Duckworth, W. R. (Moss Side)||Hudson, Capt. A. U. M. (Hack., N.)|
|Blair, Sir R.||Dugdale, Captain T. L.||Hudson, R. S. (Southport)|
|Boothby, R. J. G.||Dunglass, Lord||Hulbert, N. J.|
|Bossom, A. C.||Eastwood, J. F.||Hume, Sir G. H.|
|Boulton, W. W.||Eckersley, P. T.||Hunter, T.|
|Bower, Comdr. R. T.||Edmondson, Major Sir J.||Inskip, Rt. Hon. Sir T. W. H.|
|Boyce, H. Leslie||Elliot, Rt. Hon. W. E.||James, Wing-Commander A. W. H.|
|Bracken, B.||Ellis, Sir G.||Jones, Sir G. W. H. (S'k N'w'gt'n)|
|Braithwaite, Major A. N.||Elmley, Viscount||Keeling, E. H.|
|Brass, Sir W.||Emery, J. F.||Kerr, H. W. (Oldham)|
|Briscoe, Capt. R. G.||Emmott, C. E. G. C.||Kerr, J. Graham (Scottish Univs.)|
|Brocklebank, Sir Edmund||Emrys-Evans, P. V.||Keyes, Admiral of the Fleet Sir R.|
|Brown, Col. D. C. (Hexham)||Entwistle, Sir C. F.||Kimball, L.|
|Brown, Rt. Hon. E. (Leith)||Errington, E.||Knox, Major-General Sir A. W. F.|
|Bull, B. B.||Erskine-Hill, A. G.||Lamb, Sir J. Q.|
|Bullock, Capt. M.||Evans, Capt. A. (Cardiff, S.)||Latham, Sir P.|
|Burghley, Lord||Evans, E. (Univ. of Wales)||Law, Sir A. J. (High Peak)|
|Burgin, Rt. Hon. E. L.||Everard, W. L.||Law, R. K. (Hull, S.W.)|
|Burton, Col. H. W.||Fildes, Sir H.||Lees-Jones, J.|
|Butcher, H. W.||Findlay, Sir E.||Leighton, Major B. E. P.|
|Campbell, Sir E. T.||Fleming, E. L.||Lewis, O.|
|Cartland, J. R. H.||Fremantle, Sir F. E.||Liddall, W. S.|
|Carver, Major W. H.||Furness, S. N.||Lindsay. K. M.|
|Cary, R. A.||Fyfe, D. P. M.||Little, Sir E. Graham|
|Cayzer, Sir H. R. (Portsmouth, S.)||Gibson, Sir C. G. (Pudsey and Otley)||Llewellin, Lieut.-Col. J. J.|
|Cazalet, Thelma (Islington, E.)||Gledhill, G.||Lloyd, G. W.|
|Cazalet, Capt. V. A. (Chippenham)||Gluckstein, L. H.||Locker-Lampson, Comdr. O. S.|
|Chamberlain, Rt. Hn. N. (Edgb't'n)||Glyn, Major Sir R. G. C.||Loftus, P. C.|
|Channon, H.||Goodman, Col. A. W.||Logan, D. G.|
|Charlton, A. E. L.||Gower, Sir R. V.||Lovat-Fraser, J. A.|
|Christie, J. A.||Graham, Captain A. C. (Wirral)||Lyons, A. M.|
|Churchill, Rt. Hon. Winston S.||Grant-Ferris, R.||Mabane, W. (Huddersfield)|
|Clarke, F. E. (Dartford)||Granville, E. L.||MacAndrew, Colonel Sir C. G.|
|Clarke, Lt.-Col. R. S. (E. Grinstead)||Grettan-Doyle, Sir N.||McCorquodale, M. S.|
|Carry, Sir Reginald||Greene, W. P. C. (Worcester)||MacDonald, Rt. Hon. M. (Ross)|
|Clydesdale, Marquess of||Gretton, Col. Rt. Hon. J.||MacDonald, Sir Murdoch (Inverness)|
|Cobb, Captain E. C. (Preston)||Gridley, Sir A. B.||Macdonald, Capt. P. (Isle of Wight)|
|Colville, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. D. J.||Grigg, Sir E. W. M.||McEwen, Capt. J. H. F.|
|Conant, Captain R. J. E.||Grimston, R. V.||McKie, J. H.|
|Cook, Sir T. R. A. M. (Norfolk, N.)||Gritten, W. G. Howard||Magnay, T.|
|Cooke, J. D. (Hammersmith, S.)||Guest, Lieut.-Colonel H. (Drake)||Maitland, A.|
|Cooper, Rt. Hn. T. M. (E'nburgh, W.)||Guest, Hon. I. (Brecon and Radnor)||Makins, Brig.-Gen. E|
|Courthope, Col. Rt. Hon. Sir G. L.||Guest, Maj. Hon. O. (C'mb'rw'll, N.W.)||Manningham-Buller, Sir M.|
|Cox, H. B. T.||Guinness, T. L. E. B.||Margesson, Capt. Rt. Hon. H. D. R.|
|Cranborne, Viscount||Gunston, Capt. D. W.||Markham, S. F.|
|Marsden,Commander A.||Rathbone, J. R. (Bodmin)||Strauss, H. G. (Norwich)|
|Mason, Lt.-Col. Hon. G. K. M.||Rayner, Major R. H.||Stuart, Lord C. Crichton-(N'thw'h)|
|Mayhew, Lt.-Col. J.||Reed, A. C. (Exeter)||Stuart, Hon. J. (Moray and Nairn)|
|Meller, Sir R. J. (Mitcham)||Reid, Captain A. Cunningham||Sueter, Rear-Admiral Sir M. F.|
|Mellor, Sir J. S. P. (Tamworth)||Reid, W. Allan (Derby)||Sutcliffe, H.|
|Mills, Major J. D. (New Forest)||Remer, J. R.||Tasker, Sir R. I.|
|Moore, Lieut.-Colonel Sir T. C. R.||Rickards, G. W. (Skipton)||Tate, Mavis C.|
|Moore-Brabazon, Lt.-Col. J. T. C.||Robinson, J. R. (Blackpool)||Taylor, C. S. (Eastbourne)|
|Moreing, A. C.||Ropner, Colonel L.||Taylor, Vice-Adm. E. A. (Padd., S.)|
|Morgan, R. H.||Ross, Major Sir R. D. (Londonderry)||Thomas, J. P. L|
|Morris, O. T. (Cardiff, E.)||Ross Taylor, W. (Woodbridge)||Thomson, Sir J. D. W.|
|Morrison, G. A. (Scottish Univ's.)||Rowlands, G.||Touche, G. C.|
|Morrison, Rt. Hon. W. S. (Cirencester)||Royds, Admiral P. M. R.||Tryon, Major Rt. Hon. G. C.|
|Muirhead, Lt.-Col. A. J.||Russell, Sir Alexander||Tufnell, Lieut.-Commander R. L.|
|Munro, P.||Russell, S. H. M. (Darwen)||Walker-Smith, Sir J.|
|Nall, Sir J.||Salmon, Sir I.||Wallace, Capt. Rt. Hon. Euan|
|Nicholson, G. (Farnham)||Salt, E. W.||Ward, Irene M. B. (Wallsend)|
|Nicolson, Hon. H. G.||Samuel, M. R. A.||Wardlaw-Milne, Sir J. S.|
|O'Connor, Sir Terence J.||Sassoon, Rt. Hon. Sir P.||Warrender, Sir V.|
|Orr-Ewing, I. L.||Savory, Sir Servington||Waterhouse, Captain C.|
|Palmer, G. E. H.||Scott, Lord William||Wayland, Sir W. A|
|Patrick, C. M.||Selley, H. R.||Wells, S. R.|
|Peake, O.||Shakespeare, G. H.||Wickham, Lt.-Col. E. T. R.|
|Peat, C. U.||Shaw, Major P. S. (Wav[...]rtree)||Williams, C. (Torquay)|
|Peters, Dr. S. J.||Shaw, Captain W. T. (Forfar)||Williams, H. G. (Croydon, S.)|
|Petherick, M.||Simmonds, O. E.||Willoughby de Eresby, Lord|
|Pilkington, R.||Smith, Bracewell (Dulwich)||Windsor-Clive, Lieut.-Colonel G.|
|Ponsonby, Col. C. E.||Smith, L. W. (Hallam)||Womersley, Sir W. J.|
|Power, Sir J. C.||Somervell, Sir D. B. (Crewe)||Wood, Hon. C. I. C.|
|Pownall, Lt.-Col. Sir Assheton||Somerville, A. A. (Windsor)||Wood, Rt. Hon. Sir Kingsley|
|Procter, Major H. A.||Southby, Commander Sir A. R. J.||Wragg, H.|
|Radford, E. A.||Spears, Brigadier-General E. L.||Young, A. S. L. (Partick)|
|Raikes, H. V. A. M.||Spens, W. P.|
|Ramsbotham, H.||Stanley, Rt. Hon. Oliver (W'm'I'd)||TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—|
|Ramsden, Sir E.||Stewart, J. Henderson (Fife, E.)||Lieut.-Colonel Sir A. Lambert|
|Rankin, Sir R.||Storey, S.||Ward and Lieut.-Colonel Kerr.|
|Rathbone, Eleanor (English Univ's.)||Strauss, E. A. (Southwark, N.)|
|Acland, Rt. Hon. Sir F. Dyke||Green, W. H. (Deptford)||Milner, Major J.|
|Acland, R. T. D. (Barnstaple)||Greenwood, Rt. Hon. A.||Montague, F.|
|Adams, D. (Consett)||Griffith, F. Kingsley (M'ddl'sbro, W.)||Morrison, Rt. Hon. H. (Hackney, S.)|
|Adamson, W. M.||Griffiths, C. A. (Hemsworth)||Muff, G.|
|Ammon, C. G.||Griffiths, J. (Llanelly)||Nathan, Colonel H. L.|
|Anderson, F. (Whitehaven)||Groves, T. E.||Naylor, T. E.|
|Attlee, Rt. Hon. C. R.||Hall, G. H. (Aberdare)||Noel-Baker, P. J.|
|Banfield, J. W.||Hall, J. H. (Whitechapel)||Oliver, G. H.|
|Barnes, A. J.||Hayday, A.||Owen, Major G.|
|Barr, J.||Henderson, J. (Ardwick)||Paling, W.|
|Batey, J.||Henderson, T. (Tradeston)||Parker, J.|
|Bellenger, F. J.||Hills, A. (Pontefract)||Parkinson, J. A.|
|Benn, Rt. Hon. W. W.||Holdsworth, H.||Pethick-Lawrence, Rt. Hon. F. W.|
|Broad, F. A.||Hollins, A.||Price, M. P.|
|Brown, C. (Mansfield)||Hopkin, D.||Pritt, D. N.|
|Brown, Rt. Hon. J. (S. Ayrshire)||Jagger, J.||Richards, R. (Wrexham)|
|Buchanan, G.||Jenkins, A. (Pontypool)||Ridley, G.|
|Burke. W. A.||Jenkins, Sir W. (Neath)||Riley, B.|
|Cape, T.||John, W.||Ritson, J.|
|Charleton, H. C.||Jones, A. C. (Shipley)||Roberts, Rt. Hon. F. O. (W. Brom.)|
|Chater, D.||Jones, Sir H. Haydn (Merioneth)||Roberts, W. (Cumberland, N.)|
|Cluse, W. S.||Jones, Morgan (Caerphilly)||Robinson, W. A. (St. Helens)|
|Cocks, F. S.||Kelly, W. T.||Salter, Dr. A. (Bermondsey)|
|Cove, W. G.||Kennedy, Rt. Hon. T.||Sanders, W. S.|
|Daggar, G.||Kirby, B. V.||Sexton, T. M.|
|Dalton, H.||Kirkwood, D.||Shinwell, E.|
|Davidson, J. J. (Maryhill)||Lathan, G.||Short, A.|
|Davies, R. J. (Westhoughton)||Lawson, J. J.||Silkin, L.|
|Davies, S. O. (Merthyr)||Leach, W.||Silverman, S. S.|
|Day, H.||Leonard, W.||Simpson, F. B.|
|Dobbie, W.||Leslie, J. R.||Sinclair, Rt. Hon. Sir A. (C'thn's)|
|Dunn, E. (Rother Valley)||Lunn, W.||Smith, Ben (Rotherhithe)|
|Ede, J. C.||Macdonald, G. (Ince)||Smith, E. (Stoke)|
|Edwards, A. (Middlesbrough E.)||McEntee, V. La T.||Smith, Rt. Hon. H. B. Lees- (K'ly)|
|Edwards, Sir C. (Bedwellty)||McGhee, H. G.||Sorensen, R. W.|
|Evans, D. O. (Cardigan)||McGovern, J.||Stephen, C.|
|Fletcher, Lt.-Comdr. R. T. H.||MacLaren, A.||Stewart, W. J. (H'ght'n-le-Sp'ng)|
|Foot, D. M.||Maclean, N.||Strauss, G. R. (Lambeth, N.)|
|Gallacher, W.||Mainwaring, W. H.||Thurtle, E.|
|Gardner, B. W.||Mander, G. le M.||Tinker, J. J.|
|George, Major G. Lloyd (Pembroke)||Marshall, F.||Viant, S. P.|
|George, Megan Lloyd (Anglesey)||Mothers, G.||Walkden, A. G.|
|Gibson, R. (Greenock)||Maxton, J.||Walker, J.|
|Graham, D. M. (Hamilton)||Messer, F.||Watkins, F. C.|
|Watson, W. McL.||Williams, E. J. (Ogmore)||Young, Sir R. (Newton)|
|White, H. Graham||Williams, T. (Don Valley)|
|Whiteley, W. (Blaydon)||Windsor, W. (Hull, C.)||TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—|
|Wilkinson, Ellen||Woods, G. S. (Finsbury)||Sir Percy Harris and Sir Hugh Seely.|
Question, "That this House doth agree With the Committee in the said Resolution," put, and agreed to.
§ It being after Ten of the Clock, Mr. SPEAKER proceeded, pursuant to Standing Order No. 14, to put forthwith the Question necessary to dispose of the Report of the Resolution under consideration.
§ Mr. SPEAKER then proceeded to put forthwith the Questions, "That this House doth agree with the Committee in the outstanding Resolutions reported in respect of Classes I to IX of the Civil Estimates, the Revenue Departments Estimates, the Navy Estimates, the Army Estimates, and the Air Estimates.
§ CIVIL ESTIMATES AND SUPPLEMENTARY ESTIMATES, 1937.
§ CLASS I.
That this House doth agree with the Committee in the outstanding Resolutions reported in respect of Class I of the Civil Estimates,
§ put, and agreed to.3004
§ CLASS II.
That this House doth agree with the Committee in the outstanding Resolutions reported in respect of Class II of the Civil Estimates,
§ put, and agreed to.
§ CLASS III.
That this House doth agree with the Committee in the outstanding Resolutions reported in respect of Class III of the Civil Estimates,
§ put, and agreed to.
§ CLASS IV.
That this House doth agree with the Committee in the outstanding Resolutions reported in respect of Class IV of the Civil Estimates,
§ put, and agreed to.
§ CLASS V.
That this House doth agree with the Committee in the outstanding Resolutions reported in repect of Class V of the Civil Estimates,
§ The House divided: Ayes, 310; Noes, 138.3007
|Division No. 314.]||AYES.||[10.13 p.m.|
|Acland-Troyte, Lt.-Col. G. J.||Brown, Rt. Hon. E. (Leith)||Croom-Johnson, R. P.|
|Adams, S. V. T. (Leeds, W.)||Bull, B. B.||Cross, R. H.|
|Agnew, Lieut.-Comdr. P. G.||Bullock, Capt. M.||Crossley, A. C.|
|Allen, Col. J. Sandeman (B'knhead)||Burghley, Lord||Crowder, J. F. E.|
|Amery, Rt. Hon. L. C. M. S.||Burgin, Rt. Hon. E. L.||Cruddas, Col. B.|
|Anstruther-Gray, W. J.||Burton, Col. H. W.||Culverwell, C. T.|
|Apsley, Lord||Butcher, H. W.||Davidson, Viscountess|
|Aske, Sir R. W.||Campbell, Sir E. T.||Davies, C. (Montgomery)|
|Assheton, R.||Cartland, J. R. H.||Davison, Sir W. H.|
|Astor, Major Hon. J. J. (Dover)||Carver, Major W. H.||De Chair, S. S.|
|Astor, Viscountess (Plymouth, Sutton)||Cary, R. A.||De la B[...]re, R.|
|Astor, Hon. W. W. (Fulham, E.)||Cayzer, Sir H. R. (Portsmouth, S.)||Denman, Hon. R. D.|
|Baldwin-Webb, Col. J.||Cazalet, Thelma (Islington, E.)||Denville, Alfred|
|Balfour, G. (Hampstead)||Cazalet, Capt. V. A. (Chippenham)||Dodd, J. S.|
|Balfour, Capt. H. H. (Isle of Thanet)||Chamberlain, Rt. Hn. N. (Edgb't'n)||Doland, G. F.|
|Balniel, Lord||Channon, H.||Dorman-Smith, Major Sir R. H.|
|Barclay-Harvey, Sir C. M.||Chorlton, A. E. L.||Drewe, C.|
|Barrie, Sir C. C.||Christie, J. A.||Duckworth, W. R. (Moss Side)|
|Baxter, A. Beverley||Churchill, Rt. Hon. Winston S.||Dugdale, Captain T. L.|
|Beit, Sir A. L.||Clarke, F. E. (Dartford)||Duggan, H. J.|
|Bennett, Sir E. N.||Clarke, Lt.-Col. R. S. (E. Grinstead)||Dunglass, Lord|
|Bernays, R. H.||Clarry, Sir Reginald||Eastwood, J. F.|
|Bird, Sir R. B.||Clydesdale, Marquess of||Eckersley, P. T.|
|Blair, Sir R.||Cobb, Captain E. C. (Preston)||Edmondson, Major Sir J.|
|Boothby, R. J. C.||Colville, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. D. J.||Elliot, Rt. Hon. W. E.|
|Bossom, A. C.||Conant, Captain R. J. E.||Ellis, Sir G.|
|Boulton, W. W.||Cook, Sir T. R. A. M. (Norfolk, N.)||Elmley, Viscount|
|Bower, Comdr. R. T.||Cooke, J. D. (Hammersmith, S.)||Emery, J. F.|
|Boyce, H. Leslie||Cooper, Rt. Hn. T. M, (E'nburgh, W.)||Emmott, C. E. G. C.|
|Bracken, B.||Courthope, Col. Rt. Hon. Sir G. L.||Emrys-Evans, P. V.|
|Braithwaite, Major A. N.||Cox, H. B. T.||Entwistle, Sir C. F.|
|Brass, Sir W.||Craven-Ellis, W.||Errington, E.|
|Briscoe, Capt. R. G.||Croft, Brig.-Gen. Sir H. Page||Erskine-Hill, A. G.|
|Brocklebank, Sir Edmund||Crooke, J. S.||Evans, Capt. A. (Cardiff, S.)|
|Brown, Col. D. C. (Hexham)||Crookshank, Capt. H. F. C.||Evans, E. (Univ. of Wales)|
|Everard, W. L.||Law, R. K. (Hull, S.W.)||Rickards, G. W. (Skipton)|
|Fildes, Sir H.||Lees-Jones, J.||Robinson, J. R. (Blackpool)|
|Findlay, Sir E.||Leighton, Major B. E. P.||Ropner, Colonel L.|
|Fleming, E. L.||Lewis, O.||Ross, Major Sir R. D. (Londonderry)|
|Fremantle, Sir F. E.||Liddall, W. S.||Ross Taylor, W. (Woodbridge)|
|Furness, S. N.||Lindsay, K. M.||Rowlands, G.|
|Fyfe, D. P. M.||Little, Sir E. Graham-||Royds, Admiral P. M. R.|
|Gibson, Sir C. G. (Pudsey and Otley)||Llewellin, Lieut.-Col. J. J.||Russell, Sir Alexander|
|Gledhill, G.||Lloyd, G. W.||Russell, S. H. M. (Darwen)|
|Gluckstein, L. H.||Locker-Lampson, Comdr. O. S.||Salmon, Sir I.|
|Glyn, Major Sir R. G. C.||Loftus, P. C.||Salt, E. W.|
|Goodman, Col. A. W.||Lovat-Fraser, J. A.||Samuel, M. R. A.|
|Gower, Sir R. V.||Lyons, A. M.||Sandys, E. D.|
|Graham, Captain A. C. (Wirral)||Mabane, W. (Huddersfield)||Sassoon, Rt. Hon. Sir P.|
|Grant-Ferris, R.||MacAndrew, Colonel Sir C. G.||Savory, Sir Servington|
|Granville, E. L.||McCorquodale, M. S.||Scott, Lord William|
|Grattan-Doyle, Sir N.||MacDonald, Rt. Hon. M. (Ross)||Selley, H. R.|
|Greene, W. P. C. (Worcester)||MacDonald, Sir Murdoch (Inverness)||Shakespeare, G. H.|
|Gretton, Col. Rt. Hon. J.||Macdonald, Capt. P. (Isle of Wight)||Shaw, Major P. S. (Wavertree)|
|Gridley, Sir A. B.||McEwen, Capt. J. H. F.||Shaw, Captain W. T. (Forfar)|
|Grigg, Sir E. W. M.||McKie, J. H.||Simmonds, O. E.|
|Grimston, R. V.||Magnay, T.||Smith, Bracewell (Dulwich)|
|Gritten, W. G. Howard||Maitland, A.||Smith, L. W. (Hallam)|
|Guest, Lieut.-Colonel H. (Drake)||Makins, Brig-Gen. E.||Somervell, Sir D. B. (Crewe)|
|Guest, Hon. I. (Brecon and Radnor)||Manningham-Buller, Sir M.||Somerville, A. A. (Windsor)|
|Guest, Maj. Hon. O. (C'mb'rw'll, N.W.)||Margesson, Capt. Rt. Hon. H. D. R.||Southby, Commander Sir A. R. J.|
|Guinness, T. L. E. B.||Markham, S. F.||Spears, Brigadier-General E. L.|
|Gunston, Capt. D. W.||Marsden, Commander A.||Spens. W. P.|
|Guy, J. C. M.||Mason, Lt.-Col. Hon. G. K. M.||Stanley, Rt. Hon. Oliver (W'm'I'd)|
|Hacking, Rt. Hon. D. H.||Mayhew, Lt.-Col. J.||Stewart, J. Henderson (Fife, E.)|
|Hannah, I. C.||Mellor, Sir R. J. (Mitcham)||Storey, S.|
|Hannon, Sir P. J. H.||Mellor, Sir J. S. P. (Tamworth)||Strauss, E. A. (Southwark N.)|
|Harbord, A.||Mills, Major J. D. (New Forest)||Strauss, H. G. (Norwich)|
|Harvey, Sir G.||Moore, Lieut.-Colonel Sir T. C. R.||Stuart, Lord C. Crichton- (N'thw'h)|
|Haslam, H. C. (Horncastle)||Moore-Brabazon, Lt.-Col. J. T. C.||Stuart, Hon. J. (Moray and Nairn)|
|Haslam, Sir J. (Bolton)||Moreing, A. C.||Sueter, Rear-Admiral Sir M. F.|
|Heilgers, Captain F. F. A.||Morgan, R. H.||Sutcliffe, H.|
|Heneage, Lieut.-Colonel A. P.||Morris, O. T. (Cardiff, E.)||Tasker, Sir R. I.|
|Hepburn, P. G. T. Buchan-||Morrison, G. A. (Scottish Univ's.)||Tate, Mavis C.|
|Hepworth, J.||Morrison, Rt. Hon. W. S. (Cirencester)||Taylor, C. S. (Eastbourne)|
|Herbert, A. P. (Oxford U.)||Muirhead, Lt.-Col. A. J.||Taylor, Vice-Adm. E. A. (Padd., S.)|
|Herbert, Major J. A. (Monmouth)||Nall, Sir J.||Thomas, J. P. L.|
|Herbert, Capt. Sir S. (Abbey)||Nicholson, G. (Farnham)||Thomson, Sir J. D. W.|
|Higgs, W. F.||Nicolson, Hon. H. G.||Touche, G. C.|
|Hills, Major Rt. Hon. J. W. (Ripon)||O'Connor, Sir Terence J.||Tryon, Major Rt. Hon. G. C.|
|Holdsworth, H.||Orr-Ewing, I. L.||Tufnell, Lieut.-Commander R. L.|
|Holmes, J. S.||Palmer, G. E. H.||Walker-Smith, Sir J.|
|Hope, Captain Hon. A. O. J.||Patrick, C. M.||Wallace, Capt. Rt. Hon. Euan|
|Hopkinson, A.||Peaks, O.||Ward, Lieut.-Col. Sir A. L. (Hull)|
|Hore-Belisha, Rt. Hon. L.||Peat, C. U.||Ward, Irene M. B. (Wallsend)|
|Horsbrugh, Florence||Peters, Dr. S. J.||Wardlaw-Milne, Sir J. S.|
|Hudson, Capt. A. U. M. (Hack., N.)||Petherick, M.||Warrender, Sir V.|
|Hudson, R. S. (Southport)||Pickthorn, K. W. M.||Waterhouse, Captain C.|
|Hulbert, N. J.||Pilkington, R.||Wayland, Sir W. A|
|Hume, Sir G. H.||Ponsonby, Col. C. E.||Wells, S. R.|
|Hunter, T.||Power, Sir J. C.||Wickham, Lt.-Col. E. T. R.|
|Inskip, Rt. Hon. Sir T. W. H.||Pownall, Lt.-Col. Sir Assheton||Williams, C. (Torquay)|
|James, Wing-Commander A. W. H.||Procter, Major H. A.||Williams, H. C. (Croydon, S.)|
|Jones, Sir G. W. H. (S'k N'w'gt'n)||Radford, E. A.||Willoughby de Eresby, Lord|
|Jones, Sir H. Haydn (Merioneth)||Raikes, H. V. A. M.||Windsor-Clive, Lieut.-Colonel G.|
|Keeling, E. H.||Ramsbotham, H.||Womersley, Sir W. J.|
|Kerr, Colonel C. I. (Montrose)||Ramsden, Sir E.||Wood, Hon. C. I. C.|
|Kerr, H. W. (Oldham)||Rankin, Sir R.||Wood, Rt. Hon. Sir Kingsley|
|Kerr, J. Graham (Scottish Univs.)||Rathbone, Eleanor (English Univ's.)||Wragg, H.|
|Keyes, Admiral of the Fleet Sir R.||Rathbone, J. R. (Bodmin)||Young, A. S. L. (Partick)|
|Kimball, L.||Rayner, Major R. H.|
|Knox, Major-General Sir A. W. F.||Reed, A. C. (Exeter)||TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—|
|Lamb, Sir J. Q.||Reid, Captain A. Cunningham||Major Sir George Davies and Mr.|
|Latham, Sir P.||Reid, W. Allan (Derby)||Munro.|
|Law, Sir A. J. (High Peak)||Remer, J. R.|
|Acland, Rt. Hon. Sir F. Dyke||Benn, Rt. Hon. W. W.||Dalton, H.|
|Acland, R. T. D. (Barnstaple)||Broad, F. A.||Davidson, J. J. (Maryhill)|
|Adams, D. (Consett)||Brown, C. (Mansfield)||Davies, R, J. (Westhoughton)|
|Adamson, W. M.||Brown, Rt. Hon. J. (S. Ayrshire)||Davies, S. O. (Merthyr)|
|Ammon, C. G.||Buchanan, G.||Day, H.|
|Anderson, F. (Whitehaven)||Burke, W. A.||Dobbie, W.|
|Attlee, Rt. Hon. C. R.||Cape, T.||Dunn, E. (Rother Valley)|
|Banfield, J. W.||Chater, D.||Ede, J. C.|
|Barnes, A. J.||Cluse, W. S.||Edwards, A. (Middlesbrough E.)|
|Barr, J.||Cocks, F. S.||Edwards, Sir C. (Bedwellty)|
|Batey, J.||Cove, W. G.||Fletcher, Lt.-Comdr. R. T. H.|
|Bellenger, F.J.||Daggar, G.||Foot, D. M.|
|Gallacher, W.||Macdonald, G. (Ince)||Sanders, W. S.|
|Gardner, B. W.||McEntee, V. La T.||Seely, Sir H. M.|
|George, Major G. Lloyd (Pembroke)||McGhee, H. G.||Sexton, T. M.|
|George, Megan Lloyd (Anglesey)||McGovern, J.||Shinwell, E.|
|Gibson, R. (Greenock)||MacLaren, A.||Short, A.|
|Graham, D. M. (Hamilton)||Maclean, N.||Silkin, L.|
|Green, W. H. (Deptford)||Mainwaring, W. H.||Silverman, S. S.|
|Greenwood, Rt. Hon. A.||Mander, G. le M.||Simpson, F. B.|
|Griffith, F. Kingsley (M'ddl'sbro, W.)||Marshall, F.||Sinclair, Rt. Hon. Sir A. (C'thn's)|
|Griffiths, G. A. (Hemsworth)||Mathers, G.||Smith, Ben (Rotherhithe)|
|Griffiths, J. (Llanelly)||Maxton, J.||Smith, E. (Stoke)|
|Hall, G. H. (Aberdare)||Messer, F.||Smith, Rt. Hon. H. B. Lees- (K'ly)|
|Hall, J. H. (Whitechapel)||Milner, Major J.||Smith, T. (Normanton)|
|Harris, Sir P. A.||Montague, F.||Sorensen, R. W.|
|Harvey, T. E. (Eng. Univ's.)||Morrison, Rt. Hon. H. (Hackney, S.)||Stephen, C.|
|Hayday, A.||Muff, G.||Stewart, W. J. (H'ght'n-le-Sp'ng)|
|Henderson, J. (Ardwick)||Nathan, Colonel H. L.||Strauss, G. R. (Lambeth, N.)|
|Henderson, T. (Tradeston)||Naylor, T. E.||Thurtle, E.|
|Hills, A. (Pontefract)||Noel-Baker, P. J.||Tinker, J. J.|
|Hollins, A.||Oliver, G. H.||Viant, S. P.|
|Hopkin, D.||Owen, Major G.||Walkden, A. G.|
|Jagger, J.||Paling, W.||Walker, J.|
|Jenkins, A. (Pontypool)||Parker, J.||Watkins, F. C.|
|Jenkins, Sir W. (Neath)||Parkinson, J. A.||Watson, W. McL.|
|John, W.||Pethick-Lawrence, Rt. Hon. F. W.||White, H. Graham|
|Jones, A. C. (Shipley)||Price, M. P.||Whiteley, W. (Blaydon)|
|Kelly, W. T.||Pritt, D. N.||Wilkinson, Ellen|
|Kennedy, Rt. Hon. T.||Richards, R. (Wrexham)||Williams, E. J. (Ogmore)|
|Kirby, B. V.||Ridley, G.||Williams, T. (Don Valley)|
|Kirkwood, D.||Riley, B.||Windsor, W. (Hull, C.)|
|Lathan, G.||Ritson, J.||Woods, G. S. (Finsbury)|
|Leach, W.||Roberts, Rt. Hon. F. O. (W. Brom.)||Young, Sir R. (Newton)|
|Leonard, W.||Roberts, W. (Cumberland, N.)|
|Leslie, J. R.||Robinson, W. A. (St. Helens)||TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—|
|Lunn, W.||Salter, Dr. A. (Bermondsey)||Mr. Charleton and Mr. Groves.|
§ CLASS VI.
That this House doth agree with the Committee in the outstanding Resolutions re-
ported in respect of Class VI of the Civil Estimates,
§ The House divided: Ayes, 307; Noes. 140.3009
|Division No. 315.]||AYES.||10.24 p.m.|
|Acland-Troyte, Lt.-Col. G. J.||Burghley, Lord||Davies, C. (Montgomery)|
|Adams, S. V. T. (Leeds, W.)||Burgin, Rt. Hon. E. L.||Davies, Major Sir G. F. (Yeovil)|
|Agnew, Lieut.-Comdr. P. G.||Burton, Col. H. W.||Davison, Sir W. H.|
|Allen, Col. J. Sandeman (B'knhead)||Butcher, H. W.||De Chair, S. S.|
|Amery, Rt. Hon. L. C. M. S.||Campbell, Sir E. T.||De la Bère, R.|
|Anstruther-Gray, W. J.||Cartland, J. F. H.||Denman, Hon. R. D.|
|Apsley, Lord||Carver, Major W. H.||Denville, Alfred|
|Aske, Sir R. W.||Cary, R. A.||Dodd, J. S.|
|Assheton, R.||Cayzer, Sir H. R. (Portsmouth, S.)||Doland, G. F.|
|Astor, Major Hon. J. J. (Dover)||Cazalet, Thelma (Islington, E.)||Dorman-Smith, Major Sir R. H.|
|Astor, Viscountess (Plymouth, Sutton)||Cazalet, Capt. V. A. (Chippenham)||Drewe, C.|
|Astor, Hon. W. W. (Fulham, E.)||Chamberlain, Rt. Hn. N. (Edgb't'n)||Duckworth, W. F. (Moss Side)|
|Baillie, Sir A. W. M.||Channon, H.||Duggan, H. J.|
|Baldwin-Webb, Col. J.||Chorlton, A. E. L.||Dunglass, Lord|
|Balfour, G. (Hampstead)||Christie, J. A.||Eastwood, J. F.|
|Balfour, Capt. H. H. (Isle of Thanet)||Churchill, Rt. Hon. Winston S.||Eckersley, P. T.|
|Balniel, Lord||Clarke, F. E. (Dartford)||Edmondson, Major Sir J.|
|Barclay-Harvey, Sir C. M.||Clarke, Lt.-Col. R. S. (E. Grinstead)||Elliot, Rt. Hon. W. E.|
|Barrie, Sir C. C.||Clydesdale, Marquess of||Ellis, Sir G.|
|Beamish, Rear-Admiral T. P. H.||Cobb, Captain E. C. (Preston)||Elmley, Viscount|
|Beit, Sir A. L.||Colville, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. D. J.||Emery, J. F.|
|Bennett, Sir E. N.||Conant, Captain R. J. E.||Emmott, C. E. G. C.|
|Bernays, R. H.||Cook, Sir T. R. A. M. (Norfolk, N.)||Emrys-Evan, P. V.|
|Bird, Sir R. B.||Cooke, J. D. (Hammersmith, S.)||Entwistle, Sir C. F.|
|Blair, Sir R.||Cooper, Rt. Hn. T. M. (E'nburgh, W.)||Errington, E.|
|Boothby, R. J. G.||Courthope, Col. Rt. Hon. Sir G. L.||Erskine-Hill, A. G.|
|Bossom, A. C.||Cox, H. B. T.||Evans, Capt. A. (Cardiff, S.)|
|Boulton, W. W.||Cranborne, Viscount||Everard W. L.|
|Bowyer, Comdr. R. T.||Craven-Ellis, W.||Flides, Sir H.|
|Boyce, H. Leslie||Croft, Brig.-Gen. Sir H. Page||Fleming, E. L.|
|Bracken, B.||Crooke, J. S.||Fremantle, Sir F. E.|
|Braithwaite, Major A. N.||Crookshank, Capt. H. F. C||Furness, S. N.|
|Brass, Sir W.||Croom-Johnson, R. P.||Fyfe, D. P. M.|
|Briscoe, Capt. R. G.||Cross, R. H.||Gibson, Sir C. G. (Pudsey and Otley)|
|Brocklebank, Sir Edmund||Crossley, A. C.||Gledhill, G.|
|Brown, Col. D. C. (Hexham)||Crowder, J. F. E.||Gluckstein L. H.|
|Brown, Rt. Hon. E. (Leith)||Cruddas, Col. B.||Glyn, Major Sir R. G. C.|
|Bull, B. B.||Culverwell, C. T.||Goodman, Col. A. W.|
|Bullock, Capt. M.||Davidson, Viscountess||Gower, Sir R. V.|
|Graham, Captain A. C. (Wirral)||Locker-Lampoon, Comdr. O. S.||Rowlands, G.|
|Grant-Ferris, R.||Loftus, P. C.||Royds, Admiral P. M. R.|
|Granville E. L.||Lovat-Fraser, J. A.||Russell, Sir Alexander|
|Grattan-Doyle, Sir N.||Lyons, A. M.||Russell, S. H. M. (Darwen)|
|Greene, W. P. C. (Worcester)||Mabane, W. (Huddersfield)||Salmon, Sir I.|
|Gretton, Col. Rt. Hon. J.||MacAndrew, Colonel Sir C. G.||Salt, E. W.|
|Gridley, Sir A. B.||McCorquodale, M. S.||Samuel, M. R. A.|
|Grigg, Sir E. W. M.||MacDonald, Rt. Hon. M. (Ross)||Sandys, E. D.|
|Gritten, W. G. Howard||MacDonald, Sir Murdoch (Inverness)||Sassoon, Rt. Hon. Sir P.|
|Guest, Lieut.-Colonel H. (Drake)||Macdonald, Capt. P. (Isle of Wight)||Savery, Sir Servington|
|Guest, Hon. I. (Brecon and Radnor)||McEwen, Capt. J. H. F.||Scott, Lord William|
|Guest, Maj. Hon. O. (C'mb'rw'll, N.W.)||McKie, J. H.||Selley, H. R.|
|Guinness, T. L. E. B.||Magnay, T.||Shakespeare, G. H.|
|Gunston, Capt. D. W.||Maitland, A.||Shaw, Major P. S. (Wavertree)|
|Guy, J. C. M.||Makins, Brig.-Gen. E.||Shaw, Captain W. T. (Forfar)|
|Hacking, Rt. Hon. D. H.||Manningham-Buller, Sir M.||Simmonds, O. E.|
|Hannah, I. C.||Margesson, Capt. Rt. Hon. H. D. R.||Smith, Bracewell (Dulwich)|
|Hannon, Sir P. J. H.||Markham, S. F.||Smith, L. W. (Hallam)|
|Harbord, A.||Marsden, Commander A.||Somervell, Sir D. B. (Crewe)|
|Harvey, Sir G.||Mason, Lt.-Col. Hon. G. K. M.||Somerville, A. A. (Windsor)|
|Haslam, Henry (Horncastle)||Mayhew, Lt.-Col. J.||Southby, Commander Sir A. R. J.|
|Haslam, Sir J. (Bolton)||Mellor, Sir R. J. (Mitcham)||Spears, Brigadier-General E. L.|
|Heilgers, Captain F. F. A.||Mellor, Sir J. S. P. (Tamworth)||Spans. W. P.|
|Heneage, Lieut.-Colonel A. P.||Mills, Major J. D. (New Forest)||Stanley, Rt. Hon. Oliver (W'm'I'd)|
|Hepburn, P. G. T. Buchan-||Moore, Lieut.-Colonel Sir T. C. R.||Stewart, J. Henderson (Fife, E.)|
|Hepworth, J.||Moore-Brabazon, Lt.-Col. J. T. C.||Storey, S.|
|Herbert, A. P. (Oxford U.)||Morgan, R. H.||Strauss, E. A. (Southwark, N.)|
|Herbert, Major J. A. (Monmouth)||Morris, O. T. (Cardiff, E.)||Strauss, H. G. (Norwich)|
|Herbert, Capt. Sir S. (Abbey)||Morrison, G. A. (Scottish Univ's.)||Stuart, Lord C. Crichton- (N'thw'h)|
|Higgs, W. F.||Morrison, Rt. Hon. W. S. (Cirencester)||Stuart, Hon. J. (Moray and Nairn)|
|Hills, Major Rt. Hon. J. W. (Ripon)||Muirhead, Lt.-Col. A. J.||Sueter, Rear-Admiral Sir M. F.|
|Holmes, J. S.||Munro, P.||Sutcliffe, H.|
|Hope,||Captain Hon. A. O. J.||Nall, Sir J. Tasker, Sir R. I.|
|Hopkinson, A.||Nicholson, G. (Farnham)||Tate, Mavis C.|
|Hore-Belisha, Rt. Hon. L.||Nicolson, Hon. H. G.||Taylor, C. S. (Eastbourne)|
|Horsbrugh, Florence||O'Connor, Sir Terence J.||Taylor, Vice-Adm. E. A. (Padd., S.)|
|Hudson, Capt. A. U. M. (Hack., N.)||Orr-Ewing, I. L.||Thomas, J. P. L.|
|Hudson, R. S. (Southport)||Palmer, G. E. H.||Thomson, Sir J. D. W.|
|Hulbert, N. J.||Patrick, C. M.||Touche, G. C.|
|Hume, Sir G. H.||Peat, C. U.||Tryon, Major Rt. Hon. G. C.|
|Hunter, T.||Petherick, M.||Tufnell, Lieut.-Commander R. L.|
|Inskip, Rt. Hon. Sir T. W. H.||Pickthorn, K. W. M.||Walker-Smith, Sir J.|
|James, Wing-Commander A. W. H.||Pilkington, R.||Wallace, Capt. Rt. Hon. Euan|
|Jones, Sir G. W. H. (S'k N'w'gt'n)||Ponsonby, Col. C. E.||Ward, Lieut.-Col. Sir A. L. (Hull)|
|Keeling, E. H.||Power, Sir J. C.||Ward, Irene M. B. (Wallsend)|
|Kerr, Colonel C. I. (Montrose)||Pownall, Lt.-Col. Sir Assheton||Wardlaw-Milne, Sir J. S.|
|Kerr, H. W. (Oldham)||Procter, Major H. A.||Warrender, Sir V.|
|Kerr, J. Graham (Scottish Univs.)||Radford, E. A.||Waterhouse, Captain C.|
|Keyes, Admiral of the Fleet Sir R.||Raikes, H. V. A. M.||Wayland, Sir W. A|
|Kimball, L.||Ramsay, Captain A. H. M.||Wells, S. R.|
|Knox, Major-General Sir A. W. F.||Ramsbotham, H.||Wickham, Lt.-Col. E. T. R.|
|Lamb, Sir J. Q.||Ramsden, Sir E.||Williams, C. (Torquay)|
|Latham, Sir P.||Rankin, Sir R.||Williams, H. G. (Croydon, S.)|
|Law, Sir A. J. (High Peak)||Rathbone, J. R. (Bodmin)||Willoughby de Eresby, Lord|
|Law, R. K. (Hull, S.W.)||Rayner, Major R. H.||Windsor-Clive, Lieut.-Colonel G.|
|Lees-Jones, J.||Reed, A. C. (Exeter)||Womersley, Sir W. J.|
|Leighton, Major B. E. P.||Reid, Captain A. Cunningham||Wood, Hon. C. I. C.|
|Levy, T.||Reid, W. Allan (Derby)||Wood, Rt. Hon. Sir Kingsley|
|Lewis, O.||Remer, J. R.||Wragg, H.|
|Liddall, W. S.||Rickards, G. W. (Skipton)||Wright, Squadron-Leader J. A. C.|
|Lindsay, K. M.||Robinson, J. R. (Blackpool)||Young, A. S. L. (Partick)|
|Little, Sir E. Graham-||Ropner, Colonel L.|
|Llewellin, Lieut.-Col. J. J.||Ross, Major Sir R. D. (Londonderry)||TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—|
|Lloyd, G. W.||Ross Taylor, W. (Woodbridge)||Captain Dugdale and Mr. Grimston.|
|Acland, Rt. Hon. Sir F. Dyke||Cape, T.||Evans, E. (Univ. of Wales)|
|Acland, R. T. D. (Barnstaple)||Charleton, H. C.||Fletcher, Lt.-Comdr. R. T. H.|
|Adams, D. (Consett)||Chater, D.||Foot, D. M.|
|Adamson, W. M.||Cluse, W. S.||Gallacher, W.|
|Ammon, C. G.||Cocks, F. S.||Gardner, B. W.|
|Anderson, F. (Whitehaven)||Cove, W. G.||George, Major G. Lloyd (Pembroke)|
|Attlee, Rt. Hon. C. R.||Daggar, G.||Gibson, R. (Greenock)|
|Banfield, J. W.||Dalton, H.||Graham, D. M. (Hamilton)|
|Barnes, A. J.||Davidson, J. J. (Maryhill)||Green, W. H. (Deptford)|
|Barr, J.||Davies, R. J. (Westhoughton)||Greenwood, Rt. Hon. A.|
|Batey, J.||Davies, S. O. (Merthyr)||Griffith, F. Kingsley (M'ddl'sbro, W.)|
|Bellenger, F. J.||Day, H.||Griffiths, G. A. (Hemsworth)|
|Benn, Rt. Hon. W. W.||Dobbie, W.||Griffiths, J. (Llanelly)|
|Broad, F. A.||Dunn, E. (Rother Valley)||Groves, T. E.|
|Brown, C. (Mansfield)||Ede, J. C.||Hall, G. H. (Aberdare)|
|Brown, Rt. Hon. J. (S. Ayrshire)||Edwards, A. (Middlesbrough E.)||Hall, J. H. (Whitechapel)|
|Buchanan, G.||Edwards, Sir C. (Bedwellty)||Harris, Sir P. A.|
|Burke, W. A.||Evans, D. O. (Cardigan)||Harvey, T. E. (Eng. Univ's.)|
|Hayday, A.||Marshall, F.||Silkin, L.|
|Henderson, J. (Ardwick)||Maxton, J.||Silverman, S. S.|
|Henderson, T. (Tradeston)||Messer, F.||Simpson, F. B.|
|Hills, A. (Pontefract)||Milner, Major J.||Sinclair, Rt. Hon. Sir A. (C'thn's)|
|Holdsworth, H.||Montague, F.||Smith, Ben (Rotherhithe)|
|Hollins, A.||Morrison, Rt. Hon. H. (Hackney, S.)||Smith, E. (Stoke)|
|Hopkin, D.||Muff, G.||Smith, Rt. Hon. H. B. Lees- (K'Iy)|
|Jagger, J.||Nathan, Colonel H. L.||Smith, T. (Normanton)|
|Jenkins, A. (Pontypool)||Naylor, T. E.||Sorensen, R. W.|
|Jenkins, Sir W. (Neath)||Noel-Baker, P. J.||Stephen, C.|
|John, W.||Oliver, G. H.||Stewart, W. J. (H'ght'n-le-Sp'ng)|
|Jones, A. C. (Shipley)||Owen, Major G.||Strauss, G. R. (Lambeth, N.)|
|Jones, Sir H. Haydn (Merioneth)||Paling, W.||Thurtle, E.|
|Kelly, W. T.||Parker, J.||Tinker, J. J.|
|Kennedy, Rt. Hon. T.||Parkinson, J. A||Viant, S. P.|
|Kirby, B. V.||Pethick-Lawrence, Rt. Hon. F. W.||Walkden, A. G.|
|Kirkwood, D.||Price, M. P.||Walker, J.|
|Lathan, G.||Pritt, D. N.||Watkins, F. C.|
|Leach, W.||Richards, R. (Wrexham)||Watson, W. McL.|
|Leonard, W.||Ridley, G.||White, H. Graham|
|Leslie, J. R.||Riley, B.||Wilkinson, Ellen|
|Lunn, W.||Ritson, J.||Williams, E. J. (Ogmore)|
|Macdonald, G. (Ince)||Roberts, Rt. Hon. F. O. (W. Brom.)||Williams, T. (Don Valley)|
|McEntee, V. La T.||Roberts, W. (Cumberland. N.)||Windsor, W. (Hull, C.)|
|McGhee, H. G.||Robinson, W. A. (St. Helens)||Woods, G. S. (Finsbury)|
|McGovern, J.||Sanders, W. S.||Young, Sir R. (Newton)|
|MacLaren, A.||Seely, Sir H. M.|
|Maclean, N.||Sexton, T. M.||TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—|
|Mainwaring, W. H.||Shinwell, E.||Mr. Whiteley and Mr. Mathers.|
|Mander, G. le M.||Short, A.|
§ CLASS VII.
That this House doth agree with the Committee in the outstanding Resolution reported in respect of Class VII of the Civil Estimates,
§ put, and agreed to.
§ CLASS VIII.
That this House doth agree with the Committee in the outstanding Resolution reported in respect of Class VIII of the Civil Estimates,
§ put, and agreed to.
§ CLASS IX.
That this House doth agree with the Committee in the outstanding Resolution
reported in respect of Class IX of the Civil Estimates,
§ put, and agreed to.
§ REVENUE DEPARTMENTS ESTIMATES, 1937.
That this House doth agree with the Committee in the outstanding Resolution reported in respect of the Revenue Departments Estimates,
§ put, and agreed to.
§ NAVY ESTIMATES, 1937.
That this House doth agree with the Committee in the outstanding Resolution reported in respect of the Navy Estimates,
§ The House divided: Ayes, 325; Noes, 8.3013
|Division No. 316.]||AYES.||[10.36 p.m.|
|Acland, Rt. Hon. Sir F. Dyke||Beamish, Rear-Admiral T. P. H.||Butcher, H. W.|
|Acland, R. T. D. (Barnstaple)||Beit, Sir A. L.||Campbell, Sir E. T.|
|Acland-Troyte, Lt.-Col. G. J.||Bennett, Sir E. N.||Cartland, J. N. H.|
|Adams, S. V. T. (Leeds, W.)||Bernays, R. H.||Carver, Major W. H.|
|Agnew, Lieut.-Comdr. P. G.||Bird, Sir R. B.||Cary, R. A.|
|Allen, Col. J. Sandeman (B'knhead)||Blair, Sir R.||Cayzer, Sir H. R. (Portsmouth, S.)|
|Amery, Rt. Hon. L. C. M. S.||Boothby, R. J. G.||Cazalet, Thelma (Islington, E.)|
|Anderson, Sir A. Garrett (C. of Ldn.)||Bossom, A. C.||Cazalet, Capt. V. A. (Chippenham)|
|Anstruther-Gray, W. J.||Boulton, W. W.||Chamberlain, Rt. Hn. N. (Edgb't'n)|
|Apsley, Lord||Bower, Comdr. R. T.||Channon, H.|
|Aske, Sir R. W.||Boyce, H. Leslie||Chorlton, A. E. L.|
|Assheton, R.||Bracken, B.||Christie, J. A.|
|Astor, Major Hon. J. J. Dover)||Braithwaite, Major A. N.||Churchill, Rt. Hon, Winston S.|
|Astor, Viscountess (Plymouth, Sutton)||Brass, Sir W.||Clarke, F. E. (Dartford)|
|Astor, Hon. W. W. (Fulham, E.)||Briscoe, Capt. R. G.||Clarke, Lt.-Col. R. S. (E. Grinstead)|
|Baillie, Sir A. W. M.||Brocklebank, Sir Edmund||Clydesdale, Marquess of|
|Baldwin-Webb, Col. J.||Brown, Col. D. C. (Hexham)||Cobb, Captain E. C. (Preston)|
|Balfour, G. (Hampstead)||Brown, Rt. Hon. E. (Leith)||Colville, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. D. J.|
|Balfour, Capt. H. H. (Isle of Thanet)||Bull, B. B.||Conant, Captain R. J. E.|
|Balniel, Lord||Bullock, Capt. M.||Cook, Sir T. R. A. M. (Norfolk, N.)|
|Barclay-Harvey, Sir C. M.||Burghley, Lord||Cooke, J. D. (Hammersmith. S.)|
|Barrie, Sir C. C.||Burgin, Rt. Hon. E. L.||Cooper, Rt. Hn. T. M. (E'nburgh, W.)|
|Baxter, A. Beverley||Burton, Col. H. W.||Courthope, Col. Rt. Hon. Sir G. L.|
|Cox, H. B. T.||Hepworth, J.||Procter, Major H. A.|
|Cranborne, Viscount||Herbert, Major J. A. (Monmouth)||Radford, E. A.|
|Craven-Ellis, W.||Herbert, Capt. Sir S. (Abbey)||Raikes, H. V. A. M.|
|Croft, Brig.-Gen. Sir H. Page||Higgs, W. F.||Ramsay, Captain A. H. M.|
|Crooke, J. S.||Hills, Major Rt. Hon. J. W. (Ripon)||Ramsbotham, H.|
|Crookshank, Capt. H. F. C.||Holdsworth, H.||Ramsden, Sir E.|
|Croom-Johnson, R. P.||Holmes, J. S.||Rankin, Sir R.|
|Cross, R. H.||Hopkinson, A.||Rathbone, Eleanor (English Univ's.)|
|Crossley, A. C.||Hore-Belisha, Rt. Hon. L.||Rathbone, J. R. (Bodmin)|
|Crowder, J. F. E.||Horsbrugh, Florence||Rayner, Major R. H.|
|Cruddas, Col. B.||Hudson, Capt. A. U. M. (Hack., N.)||Reed, A. C. (Exeter)|
|Culverwell, C. T.||Hudson, R. S. (Southport)||Reid, Captain A. Cunningham|
|Davidson, Viscountess||Hulbert, N. J.||Reid, W. Allan (Derby)|
|Davies, C. (Montgomery)||Hume, Sir G. H.||Ramer, J. R.|
|Davies, Major Sir G. F. (Yeovil)||Hunter, T.||Rickards, G. W. (Skipton)|
|Davison, Sir W. H.||Inskip, Rt. Hon. Sir T. W. H.||Roberts, W. (Cumberland, N.)|
|De Chair, S. S||James, Wing-Commander A. W. H.||Robinson, J. R. (Blackpool)|
|Do la Bère, R.||Jones, Sir G. W. H. (S'k N'w'gt'n)||Ropner, Colonel L.|
|Denman, Hon. R. D.||Jones, Sir H. Haydn (Merioneth)||Ross, Major Sir R. D. (Londonderry)|
|Denville, Alfred||Keeling, E. H.||Ross Taylor, W. (Woodbridge)|
|Dodd, J. S.||Kerr, Colonel C. I. (Montrose)||Rowlands, G.|
|Doland, G. F.||Kerr, H. W. (Oldham)||Royds, Admiral P. M. R.|
|Dorman-Smith, Major Sir R. H.||Kerr, J. Graham (Scottish Univs.)||Russell, Sir Alexander|
|Drewe, C.||Keyes, Admiral of the Fleet Sir R.||Russell, S. H. M. (Darwen)|
|Duckworth, W. R. (Moss Side)||Kimball, L.||Salmon, Sir I.|
|Duggan, H. J.||Knox, Major-General Sir A. W. F.||Salt, E. W.|
|Dunglass, Lord||Lamb, Sir J. Q.||Samuel, M. R. A.|
|Eastwood, J. F.||Latham, Sir P.||Sandys, E. D.|
|Eckersley, P. T.||Law, Sir A. J. (High Peak)||Sassoon, Rt. Hon. Sir P.|
|Edmondson, Major Sir J.||Lees-Jones, J.||Savery, Sir Servington|
|Elliot, Rt. Hon. W. E.||Leighton, Major B. E. P.||Scott, Lord William|
|Ellis, Sir G.||Lewis, O.||Seely, Sir H. M.|
|Elmley, Viscount||Liddall, W. S.||Selley, H. R.|
|Emery, J. F.||Lindsay, K. M.||Shakespeare, G. H.|
|Emmott, C. E. G. C.||Little, Sir E. Graham-||Shaw, Major P. S. (Wavertree)|
|Emrys-Evans, P. V.||Llewellin, Lieut.-Col. J. J.||Simmonds, O. E.|
|Entwistle, Sir C. F.||Lloyd, G. W.||Sinclair, Rt. Hon. Sir A. (C'thn's)|
|Errington, E.||Locker-Lampson, Comdr. 0. S.||Smith, Bracewell (Dulwich)|
|Erskine-Hill, A. G||Loftus, P. C.||Smith, L. W. (Hallam)|
|Evans, Capt. A. (Cardiff, S.)||Lovat-Fraser, J. A.||Somervell. Sir D. B. (Crewe)|
|Evans, D. O. (Cardigan)||Lyons, A. M.||Somerville, A. A. (Windsor)|
|Evans, E. (Univ. of Wales)||Mabane, W. (Huddersfield)||Southby, Commander Sir A. R. J.|
|Everard, W. L.||MacAndrew, Colonel Sir C. G.||Spears, Brigadier-General E. L.|
|Fildes, Sir H.||McCorquodale, M. S.||Spens, W. P.|
|Findlay, Sir E.||MacDonald, Rt. Hon. M. (Ross)||Stanley, Rt. Hon. Oliver (W'm'I'd)|
|Fleming, E. L.||MacDonald, Sir Murdoch (Inverness)||Stewart, J. Henderson (Fife, E.)|
|Foot, D. M.||Macdonald, Capt. P. (Isle of Wight)||Storey, S.|
|Fremantle, Sir F. E.||McEwen, Capt. J. H. F.||Strauss, E. A. (Southwark, N.)|
|Furness, S. N.||McKie, J. H.||Strauss, H. G. (Norwich)|
|Fyfe, D. P. M.||Macmillan, H. (Stockton-on-Tees)||Stuart, Lord C. Crichton- (N'thw'h)|
|George, Major G. Lloyd (Pembroke)||Magnay, T.||Stuart, Hon. J. (Moray and Nairn)|
|George, Megan Lloyd (Anglesey)||Maitland, A.||Sueter, Rear-Admiral Sir M. F.|
|Gibson, Sir C. G. (Pudsey and Otley)||Makins, Brig.-Gen. E.||Sutcliffe, H.|
|Gledhill, C.||Mander, G. le M.||Tasker, Sir R. I.|
|Gluckstein, L. H.||Manningham-Buller. Sir M.||Tate, Mavis C.|
|Glyn, Major Sir R. G. C.||Margesson, Capt. Rt. Hon. H. D. R.||Taylor, C. S. (Eastbourne)|
|Goodman, Col. A. W.||Markham, S. F.||Taylor, Vice-Adm. E. A. (Padd., S.)|
|Gower, Sir R. V.||Marsden, Commander A.||Thomas, J. P. L.|
|Graham, Captain A. C. (Wirral)||Mason, Lt.-Col. Hon. G. K. M.||Thomson, Sir J. D. W.|
|Grant-Ferris, R.||Mayhew, Lt.-Col. J.||Touche, G. C.|
|Granville, E. L.||Mellor, Sir R. J. (Mitcham)||Tryon, Major Rt. Hon. G. C.|
|Grattan-Doyle, Sir N.||Mellor, Sir J. S. P. (Tamworth)||Tufnell, Lieut.-Commander R. L.|
|Greene, W. P. C. (Worcester)||Mills, Major J. D. (New Forest)||Walker-Smith, Sir J.|
|Gretton, Col. Rt. Hon. J.||Moore, Lieut.-Colonel Sir T. C. R.||Wallace, Capt. Rt. Hon. Euan|
|Gridley, Sir A. B.||Moore-Brabazon, Lt.-Col. J. T. C.||Ward, Lieut.-Col. Sir A. L. (Hull)|
|Griffith, F. Kingsley (M'ddl'sbro, W.)||Moreing, A. C.||Ward, Irene M. B. (Wallsend)|
|Grigg, Sir E. W. M.||Morgan, R. H.||Wardlaw-Milne, Sir J. S.|
|Grimston, R. V.||Morris, O. T. (Cardiff, E.)||Warrender, Sir V.|
|Gritten, W. G. Howard||Morrison, G. A. (Scottish Univ's.)||Waterhouse, Captain C.|
|Guest, Lieut.-Colonel H. (Drake)||Morrison, Rt. Hon. W. S. (Cirencester)||Wayland, Sir W. A|
|Guest, Hon. I. (Brecon and Radnor)||Munro, P.||Wells, S. R.|
|Guest, Maj. Hon. O. (C'mb'rw'll, N.W.)||Nall, Sir J.||White, H. Graham|
|Guinness, T. L. E. B.||Nicholson, G. (Farnham)||Wickham, Lt.-Col. E. T. R.|
|Gunston, Capt. D. W.||Nicolson, Hon. H. G.||Williams, C. (Torquay)|
|Guy, J. C. M.||O'Connor, Sir Terence J.||Williams, H. G. (Croydon, S.)|
|Hacking, Rt. Hon. D. H.||Orr-Ewing, I. L.||Willoughby de Eresby, Lord|
|Hannah, I. C.||Owen, Major G.||Windsor-Clive, Lieut.-Colonel G.|
|Hannon, Sir P. J. H.||Palmer, G. E. H.||Womersley, Sir W. J.|
|Harbord, A.||Patrick, C. M.||Wood, Hon. C. I. C.|
|Harris, Sir P. A.||Peake, O.||Wood, Rt. Hon. Sir Kingsley|
|Harvey, Sir G.||Peat, C. U.||Wragg, H.|
|Haslam, H. C. (Horncastle)||Petherick, M.||Wright, Squadron-Leader J. A. C.|
|Haslam, Sir J. (Bolton)||Pickthorn, K. W. M.||Young, A. S. L. (Partick)|
|Heilgers, Captain F. F. A.||Pilkington, R.|
|Heneage, Lieut.-Colonel A. P.||Power, Sir J. C.||TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—|
|Hepburn, P. G. T. Buchan-||Pownall, Lt.-Col. Sir Assheton||Captain Hope and Captain Dugdale.|
|Barr, J.||McGhee, H. G.|
|Buchanan, G.||Maxton, J.||TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—|
|Davies, S. O. (Merthyr)||Messer, F.||Mr. Buchanan and Mr. Stephen.|
|Gallacher, W.||Silverman, S. S.|
§ ARMY ESTIMATES, 1937.
That this House doth agree with the Committee in the outstanding Resolution reported in respect of the Army Estimates.
§ The House divided: Ayes, 325; Noes, 7.3017
|Division No. 317.]||AYES.||[10.46 p.m.|
|Acland, Rt. Hon. Sir F. Dyke||Courthope, Col. Rt. Hon. Sir G. L.||Griffith, F. Kingsley(M'ddl'sbro, W.)|
|Acland, R. T. D. (Barnstaple)||Cox, H. B. T.||Grigg, Sir E. W. M|
|Acland-Troyte, Lt.-Col. G. J.||Cranborne, Viscount||Grimston, R. V.|
|Adams, S. V. T. (Leeds, W.)||Craven-Ellis, W.||Gritten, W. G. Howard|
|Agnew, Lieut.-Comdr. P. G.||Croft, Brig.-Gen. Sir H. Page||Guest, Lieut.-Colonel H.(Drake)|
|Allen, Col. J. Sandeman (B'knhead)||Crooke, J. S.||Guest, Hon. I. (Brecon and Radnor)|
|Anderson, Sir A. Garrett (C. of Ldn.)||Crookshank, Capt. H. F. C||Guest, Maj. Hon. O. (C'mb'rw'll, N.W.)|
|Anstruther-Gray, W. J.||Croom-Johnson, R. P.||Guinness, T. L. E. B.|
|Apsley, Lord||Cross, R. H.||Gunston, Capt. D. W.|
|Aske, Sir R. W.||Crossley, A. C.||Guy, J. C. M.|
|Assheton, R.||Crowder, J. F. E.||Hacking, Rt. Hon. D. H.|
|Astor, Major Hon. J. J. (Dover)||Cruddas, Col. B.||Hannah, I. C.|
|Astor, Viscountess (Plymouth, Sutton)||Culverwell, C. T.||Hannon, Sir P. J. H.|
|Astor, Hon. W. W. (Fulham, E.)||Davidson, Viscountess||Harbord, A.|
|Baillie, Sir A. W. M.||Davies, C. (Montgomery)||Harris, Sir P. A.|
|Baldwin-Webb, Col. J.||Davies, Major Sir G. F. (Yeovil)||Hartington, Marquess of|
|Balfour, G. (Hampstead)||Davison, Sir W. H.||Harvey, Sir G.|
|Balfour, Capt. H. H. (Isle of Thanet)||De Chair, S. S.||Haslam, H. C. (Horncastle)|
|Balniel, Lord||De la Bère, R.||Haslam, Sir J. (Bolton)|
|Barclay-Harvey, Sir C. M.||Denman, Hon. R. D.||Heilgers, Captain F. F. A.|
|Barrie, Sir C. C.||Denville, Alfred||Heneage, Lieut.-Colonel A. P.|
|Beamish, Rear-Admiral T P. H.||Dodd, J. S.||Hepburn, P. G. T. Buchan-|
|Beit, Sir A. L.||Doland, G. F.||Hepworth, J.|
|Bennett, Sir E. N.||Dorman-Smith, Major Sir R. H.||Herbert, Major J. A. (Monmouth)|
|Bernays, R. H.||Drewe, C.||Herbert, Capt. Sir S. (Abbey)|
|Bird, Sir R. B.||Duckworth, W. R. (Moss Side)||Higgs, W. F.|
|Blair, Sir R.||Dugdale, Captain T. L.||Hills, Major Rt. Hon. J. W. (Ripon)|
|Boothby, R. J. G.||Duggan, H. J.||Holdsworth, H.|
|Bossom, A. C.||Dunglass, Lord||Holmes, J. S.|
|Boulton, W. W.||Eastwood, J. F.||Hope, Captain Hon. A. O. J.|
|Bower, Comdr. R. T.||Eckersley, P. T.||Hopkinson, A.|
|Boyce, H. Leslie||Edmondson, Major Sir J.||Hore-Belisha, Rt. Hon. L.|
|Bracken, B.||Elliot, Rt. Hon. W. E.||Horsbrugh, Florence|
|Braithwaite, Major A. N.||Ellis, Sir G.||Hudson, Capt. A. U. M. (Hack., N.)|
|Brass, Sir W.||Elmley, Viscount||Hudson, R. S. (Southport)|
|Briscoe, Capt. R. G.||Emery, J. F.||Hulbert, N. J.|
|Brocklebank, Sir Edmund||Emmott, C. E. G. C.||Hume, Sir G. H.|
|Brown, Col. D. C. (Hexham)||Emrys-Evans, P. V.||Hunter, T.|
|Brown, Rt. Hon. E. (Leith)||Entwistle, Sir C. F.||Inskip, Rt. Hon. Sir T. W. H.|
|Bull, B. B.||Errington, E.||James, Wing-Commander A. W. H.|
|Bullock, Capt. M.||Erskine-Hill, A. C.||Jones, Sir G. W. H. (S'k N'w'gt'n)|
|Burghley, Lord||Evans, Capt. A. (Cardiff, S.)||Jones, Sir H. Haydn (Merioneth)|
|Burgin, Rt. Hon. E. L.||Evans, D. O. (Cardigan)||Keeling, E. H.|
|Burton, Col. H. W.||Evans, E. (Univ. of Wales)||Kerr, Colonel C. I. (Montrose)|
|Butcher, H. W.||Everard, W. L.||Kerr, H. W. (Oldham)|
|Campbell, Sir E. T.||Fildes, Sir H.||Kerr, J. Graham (Scottish Univs.)|
|Cartland, J. R. H.||Findlay, Sir E.||Keyes, Admiral of the Fleet Sir R.|
|Carver, Major W. H.||Fleming, E. L.||Kimball, L.|
|Cary, R. A.||Foot, D. M.||Knox, Major-General Sir A. W. F.|
|Cayzer, Sir H. R. (Portsmouth, S.)||Fremantle, Sir F. E.||Lamb, Sir J. Q.|
|Gazalet, Thelma (Islington, E.)||Furness, S. N.||Latham, Sir P.|
|Cazalet, Capt. V. A. (Chippenham)||Fyfe, D. P. M.||Law, Sir A. J. (High Peak)|
|Chamberlain, Rt. Hn. N. (Edgb't'n)||George, Major G. Lloyd (Pembroke)||Law, R. K. (Hull, S.W.)|
|Channon, H.||George, Megan Lloyd (Anglesey)||Lees-Jones, J.|
|Chorlton, A. E. L.||Gibson, Sir C. G. (Pudsey and Otley)||Leighton, Major B. E. P.|
|Christie, J. A.||Gledhill, G.||Lewis, O.|
|Churchill, Rt. Hon. Winston S.||Gluckstein, L. H.||Liddall, W. S.|
|Clarke, F. E. (Dartford)||Glyn, Major Sir R. G. C.||Lindsay, K. M.|
|Clarke, Lt.-Col. R. S. (E. Grinstead)||Goodman, Col. A. W.||Little, Sir E. Graham-|
|Clarry, Sir Reginald||Cower, Sir R. V.||Llewellin, Lieut.-Col. J. J.|
|Clydesdale, Marquess of||Graham, Captain A. C. (Wirral)||Lloyd, G. W.|
|Cobb, Captain E. C. (Preston)||Grant-Ferris, R.||Locker-Lampson, Comdr. O. S.|
|Colville, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. D. J.||Granville, E. L.||Loftus, P. C.|
|Conant, Captain R. J. E.||Grattan-Doyle, Sir N.||Lyons, A. M.|
|Cook, Sir T. R. A. M. (Norfolk, N.)||Greene, W. P. C. (Worcester)||Mabane, W. (Huddersfield)|
|Cooke, J. D. (Hammersmith, S.)||Gretton, Col. Rt. Hon. J.||MacAndrew, Colonel Sir C. G.|
|Cooper, Rt. Hn. T. M. (E'nburgh, W.)||Gridley, Sir A.B.||McCorquodale, M. S.|
|MacDonald, Rt. Hon. M. (Ross)||Raikes, H. V. A. M.||Stewart, J. Henderson (Fife, E.)|
|MacDonald, Sir Murdoch (Inverness)||Ramsay, Captain A. H. M.||Storey, S.|
|Macdonald, Capt. P. (Isle of Wight)||Ramsbotham, H.||Strauss, E. A. (Southwark, N.)|
|McEwen, Capt. J. H. F.||Ramsden, Sir E.||Strauss, H. G. (Norwich)|
|McKie, J. H.||Rankin, Sir R.||Stuart, Lord C. Crichton- (N'thw'h)|
|Macmillan, H. (Stockton-on-Tees)||Rathbone, Eleanor (English Univ's.)||Stuart, Hon. J. (Moray and Nairn)|
|Magnay, T.||Rathbone, J. R. (Bodmin)||Sueter, Rear-Admiral Sir M. F.|
|Maitland, A.||Raynor, Major R. H.||Sutcliffe, H.|
|Makine, Brig.-Gen. E.||Reed, A. C. (Exeter)||Tasker, Sir R. I.|
|Mander, G. le M.||Reid, Captain A. Cunningham||Tate, Mavis C.|
|Manningham-Buller, Sir M.||Reid, W. Allan (Derby)||Taylor, C. S. (Eastbourne)|
|Margesson, Capt. Rt. Hon. H. D. R.||Remer, J. R.||Taylor, Vice-Adm. E. A. (Padd., S.)|
|Markham, S. F.||Rickards, G. W. (Skipton)||Thomas, J. P. L.|
|Marsden, Commander A.||Roberts, W. (Cumberland, N.)||Thomson, Sir J. D. W.|
|Mason, Lt.-Col. Hon. G. K. M.||Robinson, J. R. (Blackpool)||Touche, G. C.|
|Mayhew, Lt.-Col. J.||Ropner, Colonel L.||Tryon, Major Rt. Hon. G. C.|
|Meller, Sir R. J. (Mitcham)||Ross, Major Sir R. D. (Londonderry)||Tufnell, Lieut.-Commander R. L.|
|Mellor, Sir J. S. P. (Tamworth)||Ross Taylor, W. (Woodbridge)||Wakefield, W. W.|
|Mills, Major J. D. (New Forest)||Rowlands, G.||Walker-Smith, Sir J.|
|Moore, Lieut.-Col. Sir T. C. R.||Royds, Admiral P. M. R.||Wallace, Capt.Rt. Hon. Euan|
|Moreing, A. C.||Russell, Sir Alexander Ward,||Lieut.-Col. Sir A. L. (Hull)|
|Morgan, R. H.||Russell, S. H. M. (Darwen)||Ward, Irene M. B. (Wallsend)|
|Morris, O. T. (Cardiff, E.)||Salmon, Sir I.||Wardlaw-Milne, Sir J. S.|
|Morrison, G. A. (Scottish Univ's.)||Salt, E. W.||Warrender, Sir V.|
|Morrison, Rt. Hon. W. S. (Cirencester)||Samuel, M. R. A.||Wayland, Sir W. A|
|Muirhead, Lt.-Col. A. J.||Sandys, E. D.||Wells, S. R.|
|Nall, Sir J.||Sassoon, Rt. Hon. Sir P.||White, H. Graham|
|Nicholson, G. (Farnham)||Savery, Sir Servington||Wickham, Lt.-Col. E. T. R.|
|Nicolson, Hon. H. G.||Scott, Lord William||Williams, C. (Torquay)|
|O'Connor, Sir Terence J.||Seely, Sir H. M.||Williams, H. G. (Croydon, S.)|
|Orr-Ewing, I. L.||Selley, H. R.||Willoughby de Eresby, Lord|
|Owen, Major G.||Shakespeare, G. H.||Windsor-Clive, Lieut-Colonel G.|
|Palmer, G. E. H.||Shaw, Major P. S. (Wavertree)||Womersley, Sir W. J.|
|Patrick, C. M.||Simmonds, O. E.||Wood, Hon. C. I. C.|
|Peat, C. U.||Sinclair, Rt. Hon. Sir A. (C'thn's)||Wood, Rt. Hon. Sir Kingsley|
|Petherick, M.||Smith, Bracewell (Dulwich)||Wragg, H.|
|Pickthorn, K. W. M.||Smith, L. W. (Hallam)||Wright, Squadron-Leader J. A. C.|
|Pilkington, R.||Somervell. Sir D. B. (Crewe)||Young, A. S. L. (Partick)|
|Ponsonby, Col. C. E.||Somerville, A. A. (Windsor)|
|Power, Sir J. C.||Southby, Commander Sir A. R. J.||TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—|
|Pownall, Lt.-Col. Sir Assheton||Spears, Brigadier-General E. L.||Captain Waterhouse and Mr. Grimston.|
|Procter, Major H. A.||Spens, W. P.|
|Radford, E. A.||Stanley, Rt. Hon. Oliver (W'm'I'd)|
|Barr, J.||McGovern, J.||Stephen, C.|
|Davies, S. O. (Merthyr)||Messer, F.|
|McGhee, H. G.||Silverman, S. S.||TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—|
|Mr. Maxton and Mr. Buchanan.|
§ AIR ESTIMATES, 1937.
That this House doth agree with the Committee in the outstanding Resolution reported in respect of the Air Estimates.
§ The House divided: Ayes, 327; Noes, 7.3019
|Division No. 318.]||AYES.||[10.58 p.m.|
|Acland, Rt. Hon. Sir F. Dyke||Beit, Sir A. L.||Cartland, J. R. H.|
|Acland, R. T. D. (Barnstaple)||Bennett, Sir E. N.||Carver, Major W. H.|
|Acland-Troyte, Lt.-Col. G. J.||Bernays, R. H.||Cary, R. A.|
|Adams, S. V. T. (Leeds, W.)||Bird, Sir R. B.||Cayzer, Sir H. R. (Portsmouth, S.)|
|Agnew, Lieut.-Comdr. P. G.||Blair, Sir R.||Cazalet, Thelma (Islington, E.)|
|Allen, Col. J. Sandeman (B'knhead)||Boothby, R. J. G.||Cazalet, Capt. V. A. (Chippenham)|
|Amery, Rt. Hon. L. C. M. S.||Bossom, A. C.||Chamberlain, Rt. Hn. N. (Edgb't'n)|
|Anderson, Sir A. Garrett (C. of Ldn.)||Boulton, W. W.||Channon, H.|
|Anstruther-Gray, W. J.||Bower, Comdr. R. T.||Chorlton, A. E. L.|
|Apsley, Lord||Boyce, H. Leslie||Christie, J. A.|
|Aske, Sir R. W.||Bracken, B.||Churchill, Rt. Hon. Winston S.|
|Assheton, R.||Braithwaite, Major A. N.||Clarke, F. E. (Dartford)|
|Astor, Major Hon. J. J. (Dover)||Brass, Sir W.||Clarke, Lt.-Col. R. S. (E. Grinstead)|
|Astor, Viscountess (Plymouth, Sutton)||Briscoe, Capt. R. G.||Clarry, Sir Reginald|
|Astor, Hon. W. W. (Fulham, E.)||Brocklebank, Sir Edmund||Clydesdale, Marquess of|
|Baillie, Sir A. W. M.||Brown, Col. D. C. (Hexham)||Cobb, Captain E. C. (Preston)|
|Baldwin-Webb, Col. J.||Brown, Rt. Hon. E. (Leith)||Colville, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. D. J.|
|Balfour, G. (Hampstead)||Bull, B. B.||Conant, Captain R. J. E.|
|Balfour, Capt. H. H. (Isle of Thanet)||Bullock, Capt. M.||Cook, Sir T. R. A. M. (Norfolk, N.)|
|Balniel, Lord||Burghley, Lord||Cooke, J. D. (Hammersmith, S.)|
|Barclay-Harvey, Sir C. M.||Burgin, Rt. Hon. E. L.||Cooper, Rt. Hn. T. M. (E'nburgh, W.)|
|Barrie, Sir C. C.||Burton, Col. H. W.||Courthope, Col. Rt. Hon. Sir G. L.|
|Baxter, A. Beverley||Butcher, H. W.||Cox, H. B. T.|
|Beamish Rear-Admiral T. P. H.||Campbell, Sir E. T.||Craven-Ellis, W.|
|Croft, Brig.-Gen. Sir H. Page||Higgs, W. F.||Radford, E. A.|
|Crooke, J. S.||Hills, Major Rt. Hon. J. W. (Ripon)||Raikes, H. V. A. M.|
|Crookshank, Capt. H. F. C.||Holdsworth, H.||Ramsay, Captain A. H. M.|
|Croom-Johnson, R. P.||Holmes, J. S.||Ramsbotham, H.|
|Cross, R. H.||Hope, Captain Hon. A. O. J.||Ramsden, Sir E.|
|Crossley, A. C.||Hopkinson, A.||Rankin, Sir R.|
|Crowder, J. F. E.||Here-Belisha, Rt. Hon. L.||Rathbone, Eleanor (English Univ's.)|
|Cruddas, Col. B.||Horsbrugh, Florence||Rathbone, J. R. (Bodmin)|
|Culverwell, C. T.||Hudson, Capt. A. U. M. (Hack., N.)||Rayner, Major R. H.|
|Davidson, Viscountess||Hudson, R. S. (Southport)||Reed, A. C. (Exeter)|
|Davies, C. (Montgomery)||Hulbert, N. J.||Reid, Captain A. Cunningham|
|Davison, Sir W. H.||Hume, Sir G. H.||Reid, W. Allan (Derby)|
|De Chair, S. S.||Hunter, T.||Rickards, G. W. (Skipton)|
|Denman, Hon. R. D.||Inskip, Rt. Hon. Sir T. W. H.||Roberts, W. (Cumberland, N.)|
|Denville, Alfred||James, Wing-Commander A. W. H.||Robinson, J. R. (Blackpool)|
|Dodd, J. S.||Jones, Sir G. W. H. (S'k N'w'gt'n)||Ropner, Colonel L.|
|Doland, C. F.||Jones, Sir H. Haydn (Merioneth)||Ross, Major Sir R. D. (Londonderry)|
|Dorman-Smith, Major Sir R. H.||Keeling, E. H.||Ross Taylor, W. (Woodbridge)|
|Drewe, C.||Kerr, Colonel C. I. (Montrose)||Rowlands, G.|
|Duckworth, W. R. (Moss Side)||Kerr, H. W. (Oldham)||Royds, Admiral P. M. R.|
|Duggan, H. J.||Kerr, J. Graham (Scottish Univs.)||Russell, Sir Alexander|
|Dunglass, Lord||Keyes, Admiral of the Fleet Sir R.||Russell, S. H. M. (Darwen)|
|Eastwood, J. F.||Kimball, L.||Salmon, Sir I.|
|Eckersley, P. T.||Knox, Major-General Sir A. W. F.||Salt, E. W.|
|Edmondson, Major Sir J.||Lamb, Sir J. Q.||Samuel, M. R. A.|
|Elliot, Rt. Hon. W. E.||Latham, Sir P.||Sandys, E. D|
|Ellis, Sir G.||Law, Sir A. J. (High Peak)||Sassoon, Rt. Hon. Sir P.|
|Elmley, Viscount||Law, R. K. (Hull, S.W.)||Savery, Sir Servington|
|Emery, J. F.||Lees-Jones, J.||Scott, Lord William|
|Emmott, C. E. G. C.||Leighton, Major B. E. P.||Seely, Sir H. M.|
|Emrys-Evans, P. V.||Lewis, O.||Selley, H. R.|
|Entwistle, Sir C. F.||Liddall, W. S.||Shakespeare, G. H|
|Errington, E.||Lindsay, K. M.||Shaw, Major P. S. (Wavertree)|
|Erskine-Hill, A. G.||Little, Sir E. Graham-||Simmonds, O. E.|
|Evans, Capt. A. (Cardiff, S.)||Llewellin, Lieut.-Col. J. J.||Sinclair, Rt. Hon. Sir A. (C'thn's)|
|Evans, D. O. (Cardigan)||Lloyd, G. W.||Smith, Bracewell (Dulwich)|
|Evans, E. (Univ. of Wales)||Loftus, P. C.||Smith, L. W. (Hallam)|
|Everard, W. L.||Lovat-Fraser, J. A.||Somervell, Sir D. B. (Crewe)|
|Fildes, Sir H.||Lyons, A. M.||Somerville, A. A. (Windsor)|
|Findlay, Sir E.||Mabane, W. (Huddersfield)||Southby, Commander Sir A. R. J.|
|Fleming, E.L.||MacAndrew, Colonel Sir C. G.||Spears, Brigadier-General E. L.|
|Foot, D. M.||McCorquodale, M. S.||Spens, W. P.|
|Fremantle, Sir F. E.||MacDonald, Rt. Hon. M. (Ross)||Stanley, Rt. Hon. Oliver (W'm'I'd)|
|Furness, S. N.||MacDonald, Sir Murdoch (Inverness)||Stewart, J. Henderson (Fife, E.)|
|Fyfe, D. P. M.||Macdonald, Capt. P. (Isle of Wight)||Storey, S.|
|George, Major G. Lloyd (Pembroke)||McEwen, Capt. J. H. F.||Strauss, E. A. (Southwark, N.)|
|George, Megan Lloyd (Anglesey)||Mckie, J. H.||Strauss, H. G. (Norwich)|
|Gibson, Sir C. G. (Pudsey and Otley)||Macmillan, H. (Stockton-on-Tees)||Stuart, Lord C. Crichton- (N'thw'h)|
|Gledhill, G.||Magnay, T.||Stuart, Hon. J. (Moray and Nairn)|
|Gluckstein, L. H.||Maitland, A.||Sueter, Rear-Admiral Sir M. F.|
|Glyn, Major Sir R. G. C.||Makins, Brig.-Gen. E.||Sutcliffe, H.|
|Goodman, Col. A. W.||Mander, G. le M.||Tasker, Sir R. I.|
|Gower, Sir R. V.||Manningham-Buller, Sir M.||Tate, Mavis C.|
|Graham, Captain A. C. (Wirral)||Margesson, Capt. Rt. Hon. H. D. R.||Taylor, C. S. (Eastbourne)|
|Grant-Ferris, R.||Markham, S. F.||Taylor, Vice-Adm. E. A. (Padd., S.)|
|Granville, E. L.||Marsden, Commander A.||Thomas, J. P. L.|
|Grattan-Doyle, Sir N.||Mason, Lt.-Col. Hon. G. K. M.||Thomson, Sir J. D. W.|
|Greene, W. P. C. (Worcester)||Mayhew, Lt.-Col. J.||Touche, G. C.|
|Gretton, Col. Rt. Hon. J.||Meller, Sir R. J. (Mitcham)||Tryon, Major Rt. Hon. G. C.|
|Gridley, Sir A. B.||Mellor, Sir J. S. P. (Tamworth)||Tufnell, Lieut.-Commander R. L.|
|Griffith, F. Kingsley (M'ddl'sbro, W.)||Mills, Major J. D. (New Forest)||Wakefeild, W. W.|
|Grigg, Sir E. W. M.||Moore, Lieut.-Colonel Sir T. C. R.||Walker-Smith, Sir J.|
|Grimston, R. V.||Moreing, A. C.||Wallace, Capt. Rt. Hon. Euan|
|Gritten, W. G. Howard||Morgan, R. H.||Ward, Lieut.-Col. Sir A. L. (Hull)|
|Guest, Lieut.-Colonel H. (Drake)||Morris, O. T. (Cardiff, E.)||Ward, Irene M. B. (Wallsend)|
|Guest, Hon. I. (Brecon and Radnor)||Morrison, G. A. (Scottish Univ's.)||Wardlaw-Milne, Sir J. S.|
|Guest, Maj. Hon. O. (C'mb'rw'll, N.W.)||Morrison, Rt. Hon. W. S. (Cirencester)||Warrender, Sir V.|
|Guinness, T. L. E. B.||Muirhead, Lt.-Col. A. J.||Waterhouse Captain C.|
|Gunston, Capt. D. W.||Munro, P.||Wayland, Sir W. A|
|Guy, J. C. M.||Nall, Sir J.||Wells, S. R.|
|Hacking, Rt. Hon. D. H.||Nicholson, G. (Farnham)||White, H. Graham|
|Hannah, I. C.||Nicolson, Hon. H. G.||Wickham, Lt.-Col. E. T. R.|
|Hannon, Sir P. J. H.||O'Connor, Sir Terence J.||Williams, C. (Torquay)|
|Harbord, A.||Orr-Ewing, I. L.||Williams, H. G. (Croydon, S.)|
|Harris, Sir P. A.||Owen, Major G.||Willoughby de Eresby, Lord|
|Hartington, Marquess of||Palmer, G. E. H.||Windsor-Clive, Lieut.-Colonel G.|
|Harvey, Sir G.||Patrick, C. M.||Womersley, Sir W. J.|
|Haslam, H. C. (Horncastle)||Peake, O.||Wood, Hon. C. I. C.|
|Haslam, Sir J. (Bolton)||Peat, C. U.||Wood, Rt. Hon. Sir Kingsley|
|Heilgers, Captain F. F. A.||Petherick, M.||Wragg, H.|
|Heneage, Lieut.-Colonel A. P.||Pickthorn, K. W. M.||Wright, Squadron-Leader J. A. C.|
|Hepburn, P. G. T. Buchan-||Pilkington, R.||Young, A. S. L. (Partick)|
|Hepworth, J.||Ponsonby, Col. C. E.|
|Herbert, A. P. (Oxford U.)||Power, Sir J. C.||TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—|
|Herbert, Major J. A. (Monmouth)||Pownall, Lt.-Col. Sir Assheton||Major Sir George Davies and|
|Herbert, Capt. Sir S. (Abbey)||Procter, Major H. A.||Captain Dugdale.|
|Barr, J.||Messer, F.|
|Davies, S. O. (Merthyr)||Silverman, S. S.||TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—|
|McGhee, H. G.||Stephen, C.||Mr. McGovern and Mr. Buchanan.|
Lords Amendments to page 68, line 31, agreed to.
§ WAYS AND MEANS [26TH JULY].
That towards making good the Supply granted to His Majesty for the Service of the year ending on the 31st day of March, 1938, the sum of £410,503,155 be granted out of the Consolidated Fund of the United Kingdom.
§ Bill ordered to be brought in upon the said Resolution by the Chairman of Ways and Means, Sir John Simon, and Lieut.-Colonel Colville.