HC Deb 23 July 1940 vol 363 cc584-5
30. Mr. Hammersley

asked the Secretary of State for War whether he is aware that considerable numbers of members of the Auxiliary Military Pioneer Corps are in camp with nothing to do, while in other parts of the country civilians are being paid high wages to do pioneer work under the direction of Royal Engineers; and will he give instructions that all such unemployed units should now be engaged on essential defensive works?

Mr. Eden

My hon. Friend is probably referring to members of the Auxiliary Military Pioneer Corps who, on return from the British Expeditionary Force, became separated from their units, and were put into various camps until reorganisation could be effected. The companies have now been re-formed and have all been allotted to duties in this country The majority are already at work.

Mr. Hammersley

Does that mean that my right hon. Friend recognises the impropriety of a substantial number of the members of this Corps being idle when important defence works are urgently required?

Mr. Eden

I do realise that, but there was an inevitable period of disorganisation after the return from Dunkirk. That period is now over, and these companies are now at work.

Back to