HC Deb 29 March 1955 vol 539 cc193-4
43. Mr. Sorensen

asked the Secretary of State for War why Regular Service men who are now discharged on medical grounds subsequently called up for National Service and then given tasks unaffected by their disability are not given that facility in the Regular Forces; and whether he will arrange for those so affected to continue to fulfil their Regular engagement but have their service curtailed to no more than the two years that they would spend in National Service.

Mr. Head

Regular soldiers who fall below the physical standard for their own arm but remain fit for employment as Regulars elsewhere are invited to transfer to complete their engagement. They are not, however, compelled to do so, and may elect to take their discharge instead. In that case they may be called upon to fulfil their National Service liability.

Mr. Sorensen

Is the Secretary of State aware that there are examples of those who have been found unable to perform certain duties in the Regular Army having been discharged and then called up for National Service? Surely, it follows that if they can perform tasks as National Service men, similar tasks could be performed by them in the Regular Army?

Mr. Head

No, Sir. They can voluntarily transfer to another arm as Regulars and complete their Regular engagements, or they can terminate their Regular service and do the remainder of their service as National Service.