HC Deb 15 March 1922 vol 151 cc2218-9W

asked the Secretary of State for War if the buildings occupied by the Navy, Army, and Air Force institutes rent free on Government ground are supplied by the Government establishments concerned with electric light on exceptionally favourable terms and that the extra charges of 25 per cent. levied on other users of electric light on Government ground, owing to increased cost of production, are specifically excused in the case of the Navy, Army, and Air Force institutes; and why the taxpayer is penalised in this manner for the benefit of a trading concern?


I would explain to my hon. Friend that the supply of light to regimental institute buildings is governed by the Allowance Regulations for the Army, the principle being that free lighting is provided for the rooms which are used solely for the purpose of the soldier's recreation, namely, reading, writing and billiard rooms, but that the tenant of the institute (in the present instance, the Navy, Army and Air Force institutes) pays for such light as is used in those rooms which are devoted exclusively to the sale of refreshments. The Navy, Army and Air Force institutes are charged rates based on the actual cost of production, and the taxpayer is consequently not penalised in any way, as is suggested by my hon. Friend.