HC Deb 25 October 1939 vol 352 c1436W
Sir T. Moore

asked the Secretary of State for War whether he is aware of the dislocation, waste and hardship that is threatened by the War Office in reclaiming the services of a number of retired Army officers who, being in some cases beyond the ordinary age limit for recall, and even having taken the precaution of obtaining War Office sanction before acting, accepted posts in the Royal Air Force during the expansion of that arm, have learned their new roles, bought uniforms, and in some cases taken accommodation for their families; and what steps he proposes to take to remedy this matter?

Sir V. Warrender

There has never been any question that, when an officer with a liability to recall to Army service is permitted by the War Office in peace time to accept employment under another Government Department, his liability to recall normally remains unaffected.

It was, however, agreed with the Air Ministry that certain reserve officers who were permitted to accept employment in peace with the Royal Air Force should, in cases where the Air Ministry desired to retain them after mobilisation, be granted a period of suspension, normally three months, of the liability to return to the Army; and no officer whose services the Air Ministry desire to retain for a further period will be recalled to the Army until such recall is essential.

Officers who were voluntary members of the Regular Army Reserve of Officers could at any time before mobilisation have resigned from the Reserve, and officers who passed the age limit before mobilisation would no longer have been liable to compulsory recall.