HC Deb 18 June 1941 vol 372 cc643-4
39. Mr. Silkin

asked the First Lord of the Admiralty whether he will consider the creation of training corps at the universities, for specialised preliminary training for the benefit of undergraduates desiring to enter the Royal Navy, similar to the Senior Training Corps and the Air Squadrons?

The Parliamentary Secretary to the Admiralty (Sir Victor Warrender)

Under the recently announced "Y" Scheme for entry into the Navy, undergraduates may join the Navy, and those who elect to do so are required, pending their calling up for actual naval training, to belong to either the Senior Training Corps or the University Air Squadron. While the training given in these organisations is not specifically naval, it will be of general value to men entering the Navy who must, in any case, undergo disciplinary training, and undergraduates who have volunteered under the "Y" Scheme for service in the Fleet Air Arm will particularly benefit by the training in the University Air Squadron. My right hon. Friend does not consider, therefore, that the establishment of a specifically naval training corps at universities would be justified.

Mr. Silkin

Is the Parliamentary Secretary aware that there is a very strong feeling at all the universities that these facilities ought to be provided and that their absence tends to discourage recruitment to the Navy?

Sir V. Warrender

I am not aware of those facts, but if the hon. Gentleman will put them before me, I will certainly look into them.

Mr. Pickthorn

Has the Parliamentary Secretary or his right hon. Friend consulted Admiral Richmond on this question?

Sir V. Warrender

I should like to have notice of that question.