HC Deb 19 June 1951 vol 489 cc229-30
28. Mr. Boyd-Carpenter

asked the Secretary of State for War whether he proposes to amend Clause 8 of the form of attestation used in the case of voluntary enlistment so as to make clear that the right of discharge by purchase within three months of attestation is in abeyance.

Mr. Strachey

No, Sir. This ban is only a temporary measure. The recruiting staff are, however, being instructed to ensure that the attention of volunteers is drawn to the fact that discharge by purchase is at present in abeyance.

Mr. Boyd-Carpenter

In view of the last part of that answer, does the right hon. Gentleman agree that in the absence of any such explanation the conditions on the form are somewhat misleading? Will he reconsider any individual cases in which the warning was not given and in which there is some chance that the man was misled?

Mr. Strachey

If the hon. Gentleman has an individual case in mind. I will consider it.

Colonel Gomme-Duncan

Will the right hon. Gentleman consider simplifying the whole of the attestation form, which, to my certain knowledge over the last 40 years, is very involved and is difficult for a young recruit to understand?

Brigadier Prior-Palmer

Does not the right hon. Gentleman realise the danger of giving this information orally? Would it not be better to give the man a printed slip bearing the warning so that it could be proved that the man had been warned?

Mr. Strachey

That is certainly worth considering.