§ Major HORE-BELISHA
asked the First Lord of the Admiralty whether he is aware that His Majesty's Ship "Curlew," now serving on the North American and West Indies station, was commissioned in November, 1922, and was expected home in April of this year for recommissioning; whether he is aware that the "Curlew" has now been detailed to take His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales from Monte Video to Buenos Aires at the end of July and then to escort His Majesty's Ship "Repulse" to England, and that recommissioning has now been postponed until August; and whether, in view of the anxiety of the mothers and wives, he can see his way to pay off the crew in May, particularly as there are other ships on the station which might perform the service for which His Majesty's Ship "Curlew" has been detailed and that the present ship's company are suffering from their prolonged sojourn in the tropics?
The normal length of commission on foreign stations is not less than 2½ years, exclusive of time spent on passage, with a maximum time away from home ports of three years. His Majesty's. Ship "Curlew" is expected to arrive home to pay off towards the end of September or beginning of October, which is within the period laid down. I may add that the station on which His Majesty's Ship "Curlew" is stationed is a healthy and temperate one and the ship has spent not more than 304 days, or a little more than one-third of her time, in the tropics since leaving England.