HC Deb 05 April 1939 vol 345 cc2800-1W
Captain Plugge

asked the Secretary of State for War whether there are any examinations open to time-expired soldiers to enable them to secure civilian clerical employment in the War Office; and, if there are, what qualifications are required from those desiring to compete?

Mr. Hore-Belisha

Competitive examinations are held annually for established clerical posts for ex-soldiers in the War Office and in the War Department Out-station Offices.

Candidates must

  1. (1)Be under 49 years of age;
  2. (2)Have been discharged from the Regular Army on termination of engagement after not less than 12 years' service with the Colours, or have been invalided;
  3. (3)Have left the Colours not more than two years;
  4. (4)Possess at least a first-class certificate of education and an "exemplary" or "very good" certificate of character,

Colonel Sandeman Allen

asked the Secretary of State for War whether he is aware that many posts now filled at the War Office by serving soldiers involve the performance of duties similar to those carried out by time-expired ex-regular soldiers; and whether in order to carry out the Government's policy of finding employment for time-expired soldiers and at the same time to reduce the shortage of qualified military personnel in the units and commands, he will consider the substitution of serving soldiers at the War Office by the appointment of qualified ex-soldiers with the requisite experience who will remain available for continued service at the War Office in the event of war?

Sir J. Smedley Crooke

asked the Secretary of State for War whether he will consider the beneficial effects upon recruitment to the Army of being able to offer to time-expired soldiers an opportunity of filling all clerical posts in the appropriate divisions of the War Office?

Mr. Hore-Belisha

The clerical posts in the military branches at the War Office are filled by serving soldiers only to the extent necessary for training in duties for which such soldiers would be required on active service, or where special knowledge and experience are needed. There are 203 such posts. The remainder, to the number of over 500, are filled by ex-soldiers.