§ THE EARL OF WEMYSS
My Lords, I rise to ask my noble friend the Under-Secretary of State for War the Questions standing on the Paper in my name—viz: (1) How many of the 315,000 men required to complete the Territorial, so-called, Force have been enrolled up to date; (2) how many of these now serving in the Force are 622 under twenty years of age; (3) what is the lowest age at which they have been, and are now accepted; (4) how many Territorials now serving have engaged for one year only.
* THE UNDER-SECRETARY OF STATE FOR WAR (LORD LUCAS)
My Lords, in reply to the first Question, the strength of the Territorial Force on the first of this month was 8,938 officers out of an establishment of 11,267, or seventy-nine per cent.; 254,524 men out of an establishment of 302,017; or a total of 263,462 out of an establishment of 313,314, which comes out at eighty-four per cent.
In answer to the second Question I am sorry that we have not got later particulars than October 1, 1908, but on that day there were 188,785 men on the strength of the Territorial Force of whom 62,288 were under twenty. The answer to the third Question is that the limit of age for men is seventeen, and for boys fourteen. In answer to the fourth, I cannot give the noble Earl the actual number of men serving at the present time for one year, but the figures I can give will make it pretty clear. We had last year 107,857 one-year men serving in the Force—Volunteers who had transferred for one year. On April 1 last out of these 107,857 men 56,238 had already re-engaged for one year or more. That is to say, that these men had signified their intention of re-engaging before their year was actually up. Of the rest I hear from all sides very good accounts. I have no doubt that the number of one-year men who are re-engaging is considerable, although, of course, a certain number will leave the Force.
§ VISCOUNT MIDLETON
I understood the noble Lord to say that the number of officers was seventy-nine per cent. of the establishment. Can he tell us whether that statement is to be taken as referring to officers on a mobilised or a peace standard?
§ VISCOUNT MIDLETON
Then we may take it that in case of mobilisation at this moment we have seventy-nine per cent. of the number of officers actually required to take the field?
§ THE EARL OF ERROLL
I take it that the number of officers short in the Territorial Force is, roughly, 2,500?