HC Deb 19 April 1923 vol 162 cc2286-90W

asked the Minister of Pensions if he will state during which period of the year 1922–23 there were at the same time employed in the, Pensions Issue Office 600 writing assistants, 400 clerical officers, 36 higher grade clerks, 96 assistant. divisional superintendents, and 46 group supervisors: and what were in fact the establishment numbers or names and salaries of those employed on each of the last three grades at the end of each quarter of 1922–23?


The numbers of writing assistants, clerical officers and higher grade clerks mentioned in the question represent the estimated per- manent requirements of Pension Issue Office in respect of those grades. Appointments to the established staff are being made gradually, and only about 60 per cent. of the writing assistants, 50 per cent, of the clerical officers and

30th June, 1922. 30th Sept., 1922. 31st Dec, 1922. 31st March, 1923.
Higher Grade Clerks (salary scale £230-£300 per annum). 6 6 7 13
Assistant Divisional Superintendents (salary £268 per annum). 21 18 18 18
Group Supervisors (salary scale £213-£258 per annum). 36 32 31 28
Temporary Officials (salary scale £188-£233). 19 21 23 20


asked the Minister of Pensions whether any of the staff employed at regional headquarters, Nottingham, have been given notice terminating their services owing to the transfer of the work of that office to Birmingham; whether any of these men have been offered employment in some other capacity under the Ministry besides the regional director, who has been given an appointment in another region with a salary of £900 a year, notwithstanding that he is receiving a service pension of £1,000 per annum?


No notices have been issued. As I informed the hon. Member for the Broxtowe Division (Mr. G. Spencer) on the 17th instant, every competent officer now employed in the regional headquarters offices at Nottingham will be offered employment either in Birmingham or some other part of the Ministry.


asked the Minister of Pensions whether he is aware that members of the staff of regional headquarters at Nottingham and elsewhere were sent to these places to suit the convenience of his Department from London and other centres; and whether any, and if so, what arrangements have been made to reimburse them the expenses incurred in returning to their homes on termination of their employment by the Ministry?


Officers transferred from London to the regions on the inauguration of the decentralisation scheme were transferred voluntarily, and definitely accepted the condition that 50 per cent. of the higher grade clerks have as yet been appointed. The permanent staff must for some time to come be supplemented by the employment of temporary officers. The figures asked for are as follow:

their removal expenses back to London would not be borne by the State, and I regret that I am not now prepared to waive that condition. They received specially favourable conditions as regards pay when they were transferred. I should like, however, to emphasise the fact that the employment of none of the officers mentioned will be terminated in consequence of the amalgamation of the East and West Midlands regions if they will accept employment in some other part of the Ministry.


asked the Minister of Pensions chat was the number of employés in the awards division of the Ministry in the following grades: graded temporary clerks, temporary officers of junior administrative rank or over, established clerks, established higher grade clerks and executive officers, principal clerks, assistant directors, and directors; and what was the total cost of each grade in 1917–18?


The earliest date for which details of the staff engaged on awarding work are available is the 1st June, 1918, when the following numbers and grades were employed:

Established: Men. Women.
Assistant secretary 1
Principal clerks 7
Executive and Second. 30
Division clerks 30
Assistant clerks 6
Superintendent 1
Principal woman clerk 1
Officials 36
Clerks 83
Convalescent Army officers on light duty 33
Superintendents and supervisors 25
Assistant supervisors and section leaders 401
Clerks 2,534
Total 196 2,962
Grand total 3,158

I regret that the expenditure records do not contain details of the separate cost of the awards branches during the financial year 1917–18.


asked the Minister of Pensions whether it is proposed to close the area office in the City of Durham and to replace same by a sub-office subordinate to the chief area officer at Darlington; whether he is aware that there are only eight area officers in the County of Durham, and, in consequence, pensioners are put to considerable loss, both in time and money, when they wish to appeal to the War pension committee; that the proposal is causing dissatisfaction among ex-service men; and whether he will issue instructions that no further action should be taken in respect of the proposed amalgamation for at least 12 months?


Under the proposed change a whole time office would be maintained in Durham and the position, so far as pensioners are concerned, would not, therefore, be affected. Before agreeing to the proposed amalgamation of staffs, however, I have invited the Durham Committee to express their views and when they are received I will go carefully into the matter.


asked the Minister of Pensions whether he will state the total cost of administration and the number of eases in which issue of pension was authorised during the 12 months ended December, 1922, at the pension issue offices at Acton and Edinburgh, respectively?


The cost of administration of the Pension Issue Offices at Acton and Edinburgh for the year ending 31st December, 1922, was £ 806,650 and £60,408 respectively. The number of pensions in payment at the two Offices is 1,300,000 and 132,000 respectively. It should be explained that much of the work done at Edinburgh was not transferred until June, 1922, and that certain duties are performed at Issue Office, Acton, which have no counterpart in the office at Edinburgh.