HC Deb 19 November 1919 vol 121 cc930-2W

asked the Secretary of State for War whether he is aware that Pioneer L. J. Turner, No. 605471, Royal Engineers, joined the Army by voluntary enlistment under the Derby scheme, but was discharged from the Army as medically unfit; that he re-enlisted for one year's service on the 12th May, 1919; that he is now in Ward A 5, 24th General Hospital, at Etaples, France, suffering from his old complaint; and whether, in view of the fact that he is not likely to be of further use in a military capacity, instructions may be given for the release from the Army of this soldier, who has a wife and family at home?


I am making inquiries, and will acquaint my hon. Friend of the result as soon as possible.


asked the Secretary of State for War if he is aware that Gunner A. E. Linch, No, 209864, Royal Garrison Artillery, is the son of a dairy farmer farming 200 acres and owning a retail dairy business in Folkestone, which he has much difficulty in carrying on without his son's assistance; and whether, in view of the fact that Gunner Linch has been ordered home from the Army of Occupation on the Rhine and is now serving at Queenstown, there is any prospect of his speedy release from the Army in order to take up his important civil employment?


In the absence of particulars as to this man's date of enlistment, age, etc., it is not possible to state under which category of Demobilisation Regulations he conies, but in any case, providing he has not signed on for further service, he will be released not later than 1st April, 1920.


asked the Secretary of State for War (1) if he is aware that Corporal G. Sutton, No. 652243, l62nd Labour Company, British Expeditionary Force, offered himself for enlistment under the Derby scheme on the 4th of November, 1915, at the Guildhall, Canterbury, but was rejected, and received a medical rejection certificate and Form B 2512A; that on the 23rd of June, 1916, he received Army Form 3226 calling him to the Colours under the Military Service Act, but on producing his medical rejection certificate and Form B 2512A he received a notice cancelling his call to the Colours, signed by the officer commanding the recruiting office, Canterbury, sub-area, which notice proves that Sutton had been rejected under the Derby scheme; that in August, 1916, he received Form 3299 (applicable to men who had offered for voluntary enlistment and had been rejected) asking him to come up for re-examination, and was passed into category B I and was called to the Colours in October, 1916; that Sutton had the misfortune to lose his pay book and papers in France, and that his records office professes to have no record of his offering to enlist voluntarily in November, 1915, with the consequence that, whereas the other men of his company who enlisted under the Derby scheme have been demobilised, Corporal Sutton is still retained with the Colours; and, in view of the fact that there is sufficient evidence of Sutton having offered himself and being rejected in 1915, and that his company officer has given him a written acknowledgment of having seen and found genuine his lost papers, which acknow- ledgment has been forwarded to Sutton's records office, whether instructions will be given for Corporal Button's immediate discharge from the Army, to which he is entitled on the facts of his record;

(2) in view of the fact that Corporal G. Sutton, No. 652243, 162nd Labour Company, British Expeditionary Force, now at home on leave, has had an extension of leave till the 22nd instant on account of his wife's bad health, whether he will grant a further extension of leave to this soldier to enable consideration to be given to the question of his eligibility for immediate demobilisation?


As explained in my answer to the hon. Member for Wrexham on 27th October, I regret that such cases cannot be treated as "Derby" men for the purpose of demobilisation. Corporal Sutton's leave has, however, been further extended till 1st December, and inquiries are being made as to his release on compassionate grounds. I will write to my hon. Friend later.

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