HC Deb 29 July 1941 vol 373 c1242
28. Mr. Hannah

asked the Secretary of State for War whether his attention has been called to dissatisfaction among soldiers on home service that their seven days' leave every three months, if exigencies permit, is so often found to be impracticable; and will he look into the whole matter to be sure that leave is never withheld where it can possibly be granted?

Mr. Sandys

I would refer my hon. Friend to the Answer given to my hon. Friend the Member for Normanton (Mr. T. Smith) on 3rd July, of which I am sending him a copy. Leave allotments are based on the operational requirement that the strength of units should not normally be allowed to fall below establishment by more than ten per cent. at any time. While I am aware that courses, special duties and training requirements may sometimes lead to the postponement of leave, I am satisfied that cases in which soldiers at home are unable to obtain four periods of seven days' leave in the year are exceptional.

Mr. Bellenger

Would the hon. Gentleman look more closely into that, as I can assure him that there is a considerable discrepancy between different units in the granting of these leaves? It is not by any means universal for four leaves within any year to be given.

Mr. Sandys

If the hon. Gentleman will let me have particulars of any hardship cases, I will look into them.