HC Deb 17 April 1951 vol 486 cc1646-7
26. Sir G. Jeffreys

asked the Secretary of State for War for what purpose it is proposed to establish a Women's Staff College; where this college will be situated; in what branches of staff duties will instruction be given to the women students; and what is the estimated annual cost of the college.

Mr. Strachey

The Women's Royal Army Corps Staff College is being established at Frimley Park, Camberley, in order to train officers for Women's Royal Army Corps appointments and to replace male officers in second and third grade staff appointments in static headquarters. Instruction will be given in those branches of staff duties which are chiefly useful to the administrative staff officer. The annual cost of the college on the basis at present contemplated is estimated at £20,000.

Sir G. Jeffreys

Does the right hon. Gentleman consider that the fighting efficiency of the Army will benefit from the employment of these women staff officers? Can this extra expenditure be justified at this time of financial stringency, when the expenditure of every 6d. is a matter of importance?

Mr. Strachey

I should have thought that the fighting efficiency of the Army would be increased precisely by releasing male officers for combatant and other such duties and by having their present duties done by women officers.

Colonel Gomme-Duncan

I think that the right hon. Gentleman mentioned a figure of £20,000. Can he say in round figures—he knows what I mean—how many women this will include?

Mr. Ian Harvey

Will the right hon. Gentleman say what staff grade appointments are envisaged?

Mr. Strachey

I cannot give the list without notice.

Mr. Godfrey Nicholson

What is the estimated cost per student week?

Mr. Strachey

I could not say without notice.

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