HC Deb 02 November 1938 vol 340 cc195-6
31. Mr. Tinker

asked the Minister of Pensions whether he will reconsider his refusal to grant a pension to Mrs. Smith, 35, Peter Street, Leigh, whose husband served in France during the War and who was discharged in August, 1918, on account of mental condition due to war service, and who, since 1922, had been detained in a mental home as a service patient and paid a pension up to his death, as the Bolton-Leigh and District War Pension Committee are of opinion that she is entitled to a pension on the medical evidence submitted to them?

The Minister of Pensions (Mr. Ramsbotham)

Mr. Smith's mental condition was accepted as due to his Great War service, but the certified causes of his death were heart disease and chronic bronchitis, which, I am medically advised, were quite independent of his mental disability, and not causally related to war service. In these circumstances, I regret I have no power to award a pension to Mrs. Smith.

Mr. Tinker

Will the hon. Gentleman send one of his officials to the Bolton district war pensions committee in order to hear their point of view and then to report to him? Will he then reconsider this matter and see if it is possible to grant a pension to this case and all similiar cases? I ask him to do this in order to ease the situation.

Mr. Ramsbotham

I will communicate with the war pensions committee, and I will certainly consider what the hon. Gentleman suggests.