HC Deb 20 May 1952 vol 501 cc251-2
25. Mr. Higgs

asked the Secretary of State for War what steps are taken to provide serving soldiers, including National Service men, with facilities for education and training in agricultural subjects, and to encourage them, on leaving the Army, to enter or return to agricultural employment.

Mr. Head

I would refer my hon. Friend to the reply by my hon. Friend the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Defence on 16th May to a similar Question by my hon. and gallant Friend the Member for East Grinstead (Colonel Clarke).

Mr. Higgs

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that farmers are not only concerned at the loss of men while doing their National Service, but also at the loss of the service of those who do not return? Will he see that full use is made of the facilities which are provided, and that unit officers, education officers and others in contact with the men in the units are made aware of the importance of this matter?

Mr. Head

Yes, Sir. I am aware of this difficulty.

Mr. E. L. Mallalieu

Would the right hon. Gentleman agree that the carrying out of the suggestion contained in the Question is the least his Department could do to make amends for all the land they have clutched to their rather beamy bosom?

Mr. Head

Yes, Sir. We have means whereby men can have occasional training and other methods of continuing with their agricultural training.