§ 56. Sir Alfred Beit
asked the First Lord of the Admiralty how many R.N.V.R. officers are at present posted to H.M.S. "Victory" and other ships, not to join.
This figure fluctuates from day to day but approximately 650 R.N.V.R. officers are at any one time appointed to depot ships not to join. These appointments are given when officers are sick, on foreign or home service or compassionate leave, undergoing certain courses or are earmarked for appointments. In addition when requirements permit, a small margin of officers is maintained to meet unforeseen commitments and to provide replacements for casualties and sickness.
§ Sir A. Beit
Is it not a fact that a proportion of these officers are unemployed, and could not the right hon. Gentleman see his way to discharge those for whom he has no further use?
That is not so. Where you have tens of thousands of officers in 1828 the Service being moved about from post to post and from theatre to theatre, you must have a pool attached to the depot ship. Some may be there a little longer than others but we keep the number as low as possible.
The depot ships have their own regular staffs. Those who are sent there "not to join" are those who await drafting elsewhere.