HC Deb 28 January 1941 vol 368 cc406-7
12. Mr. Ellis Smith

asked the Secretary of State for War whether he will see that all men engaged on demolition, clearance, etc., are provided with at least two suits of uniform and other clothing; that they receive a complete change of underclothing at least once a week; that arrangements be made for them to use the municipal baths which are the nearest to their duty or depots; and will he treat this matter as one of urgency?

Captain Margesson

Soldiers employed on demolition and clearance work are each provided with two suits of battle dress, one suit of overalls, one suit of waterproof clothing and two sets of underclothing. A third set of underclothing is being authorised for men who work in flooded craters or under conditions of the same kind. Arrangements are made for the men to use the nearest municipal baths. One bath a week is compulsory, but the average is not less than two baths a man a week, and some units have daily baths.

Mr. Smith

While I appreciate that reply, may I point out that these men are doing great work under difficult conditions, and will the right hon. and gallant Gentleman see that they get consideration in all these matters?

Captain Margesson

Yes, Sir.

Sir Herbert Williams

Are these men supplied with adequate tools? I saw some of them this morning loading broken bricks by hand.

Captain Margesson

I will look into the matter.