HC Deb 24 November 1965 vol 721 cc499-500
25. Sir T. Beamish

asked the Secretary of State for Defence, what financial account he has taken of the added cost to other Government departments of providing the necessary command structure, communications and transport for Civil Defence, in arriving at his estimated annual saving of £20 million in the cost of the reserve forces in 1969.

Mr. Mulley

None, Sir. The reserve forces have not provided the command structure or transport for Civil Defence; their contribution to communications, though of value, is essentially in the nature of a reserve.

Sir T. Beamish

How is it possible to estimate the figure of £20 million, if that is the figure, without taking into account the very important rôle of the Territorial Army in Civil Defence? Am I right in thinking that the estimated saving is not £20 million but something rather less?

Mr. Mulley

The estimated saving which will result from the reorganisation is based on the traditional way of treating the cost of the Territorial Army in the Army Estimates by charging the usual items of pay, bounty, equipment, and so on. We do not take account of the command structure of Civil Defence because that has never been borne on Army Votes.