HC Deb 21 October 1912 vol 42 cc1739-40W

asked the Secretary of State for War in what way the petition sent by registered post from the fifty-three non-commissioned officers and men of the Sandgate section 2nd Kent Battery, 3rd Home Counties, Royal Field Artillery, to their commanding officer, with their written request that it might be duly forwarded through the correct channel to the higher authorities, was irregular; if he is aware that a majority of the section joined the Sandgate section on the understanding at the time that the drill station and local headquarters were actually in Sandgate and near their own homes; if he will explain why an official reprimand was passed upon a body of men suddenly finding themselves expected to travel backwards and forwards to a distant hall in another town for drill purposes or cleaning of equipment for asking to be permitted to continue to be trained in their own locality; and if he will give the number of non-commissioned officers and men who have found themselves unable to remain members of the section since they found that their petition was ignored?

Colonel SEELY

A collective complaint is regarded as irregular. I am informed that there is no foundation for the suggestion that the majority of the men enlisted on the understanding that they would drill at Sandgate. Nineteen men appear to have left on account of the move, of whom a few have since transferred to the Kent Garrison Artillery with headquarters at Dover.