HC Deb 29 October 1947 vol 443 c869
50. Mr. Wyatt

asked the Minister of Defence what estimate he can now make of the total numbers that will be in the Armed Forces on 31st March, 1948.

55. Mr. Swingler

asked the Minister of Defence if he will give an estimate of the numbers that will be in the Armed Forces at home and the numbers overseas on 31st March, 1948.

Mr. Alexander

As my hon. Friends will be aware, from recent statements in the House, it is now estimated that the strength of the Forces will be down to 937,000 by 31st March, 1948. It is expected that rather less than a third of these will be serving overseas.

Mr. Wyatt

Would my right hon. Friend consider urging on the Royal Air Force and the War Office that they should adopt a course similar to mat recently adopted by the Admiralty and cut down now while there is no immediate danger of war to the sort of numbers we need in peacetime?

Mr. Alexander

That is a good point, but I think I have explained before that the commitments of the Army are very different from those of the Royal Navy in this respect, and the same applies to the Royal Air Force.