§ Colonel ASHLEY
asked the Secretary of State for War whether application for the release on compassionate grounds of Gunner R. W. Smith, No. 228154, has been made to and refused by the man's commanding officer; whether the man is the only surviving son of an aged and invalid father who, through the loss of his other two sons in the War, has already lost £2,000, and is daily suffering financial hardship in business; and whether, in view of these facts, he will take steps to authorise the immediate release of this man, and thereby alleviate further unnecessary hardship?
§ Mr. CHURCHILL
As I have already stated, I hope next week to publish the Memorandum I promised, setting forth the further steps which will be taken consequent on the ratification of Peace to reduce our armed force and to release men 2033W in the order best calculated to mitigate hardships. I do not wish to anticipate this by partial answers.