§ Colonel ASHLEY
asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Munitions whether he is aware that on 26th July the Army and Navy Stores, Cardiff, who state on their bills that they are contractors to His Majesty's Government, charged an ex-Service man Is. for 1 in. of Victory ribbon; whether it has been officially stated that the cost of production is less than ½d. per inch; what steps he proposes to take to prevent the exploitation of ex-Service men when purchasing decorations; and whether he will cause the name of this firm to be removed from the list of those who contract for His Majesty's Government?
§ Mr. KELLAWAY
I am aware of the facts in the first part of my hon. and gallant Friend's question. With regard to the second part of the question, the statement I made on the 24th July referred to the British War Medal Ribbon (sometimes referred to as the General Service Ribbon) and not to the Victory Ribbon. As to the third part of the question, the ribbon sold at Cardiff was not supplied by the Government. It appears to be an inferior ribbon not manufactured in this country. I am communicating with the firm in regard to the matter. I would add I am advised that the Victory Ribbon has not yet been officially sanctioned by the Army Council or the Admiralty to be worn as a decoration. Stocks are being obtained, and official instructions will be issued as soon as sufficient quantities have been accumulated. The responsibility of the 389W Ministry of Munitions is to secure supplies to meet the bulk demands made by the military and naval authorities, and those authorities are responsible for the issue of the ribbon.