HC Deb 25 July 1939 vol 350 cc1233-4
31. Lieut.-Colonel Macnamara

asked the Secretary of State for War whether he is aware that numbers of uniforms have now been manufactured but that their distribution is being held up owing to the delay in getting them passed by Army officials; whether he is aware of the numbers of Territorial units without uniform; and whether, in view of the urgency of the whole matter, he will allow manufacturers to deliver direct to units as speedily as possible, cutting out the intermediate stage of uniforms being despatched to ordnance?

Mr. Hore-Belisha

If my hon. and gallant Friend will give me particulars of any case of delay due to inspection, I will have inquiries made.

Lieut.-Colonel Macnamara

Is it not a fact that there is great delay in the delivery of uniform and equipment of every form, including Been gun carriers and that this equipment is being manufactured and delivered to the War Office but is not being delivered by the War Office to the units; and can my right hon. Friend say what the delay is and whether the uniforms have been diverted elsewhere?

Mr. Hore-Belisha

My hon. and gallant Friend referred in his question to uniforms, but if he has any other articles in mind I shall be glad to look into the matter. I have given my answer on the question of uniforms, and I have no information about delay owing to inspection.

Mr. De la Bè

Have not the Militiamen been given the Territorials uniforms?

Lieut.-Colonel Macnamara

Is it not a fact that my right hon. Friend assured me in a previous answer that all the Territorials would have their uniforms by July? Now it is 25th July, but they have not got their uniforms.

Mr. Hore-Belisha

I am informed that one uniform for every Territorial will be completed by the end of the month.

Mr. Ralph Beaumont

Is my right hon. Friend aware that there is delay in delivery of canvas overalls which are specially useful for a number of purposes, and that the lack of them is a considerable handicap to a large number of men; and will he see that every effort is made to overtake this shortage?

Mr. Hore-Belisha

Yes, Sir. I am aware of the shortcomings in regard to overalls and to other very necessary requirements but the House will be aware that we have had to cope with very great increases, and I think some credit is due to those who have been endeavouring to meet the increased demands.

Mr. Perkins

Will my right hon. Friend consider the introduction of West of England cloth?