HC Deb 24 November 1965 vol 721 c495
18. Mr. Evelyn King

asked the Secretary of State for Defence if he will give an undertaking that the Dorset Regiment, however reorganised, will be preserved.

Mr. Mulley

I regret I cannot anticipate decisions yet to be reached on the selection of units for the proposed new reserve.

Mr. King

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that for 400 years this county regiment has been perpetually changing its rôle in response to changing requirements and that it has been militia, volunteers, horse, foot and even marines? Will he not accept that there is still a rôle for the regiment and will he not tell 700 volunteers that they are unwanted men, for it is not true?

Mr. Mulley

At this stage I do not want to anticipate the White Paper and I therefore hope that the hon. Gentleman will wait a little, but I can assure him that wherever possible we shall preserve existing titles of regiments and units, because we are very conscious of the proud traditions which go with them.