HC Deb 21 February 1940 vol 357 cc1376-7W
Commander Fletcher

asked the First Lord of the Admiralty what are the welfare arrangements for ensuring the comfort, recreation and rest of the crews of destroyers and small craft, other than submarines, at the various bases to which such ships are attached?

Mr. Churchill

The welfare arrangements for the crews of destroyers and small craft vary according to the base to which the ships are attached. In the established naval ports, there are the usual facilities, such as canteens, reading rooms and recreation grounds. The majority of bases which have come into being since the war have clubs or institutes and rest and reading rooms which have been opened by various bodies. Outdoor recreational facilities are being developed wherever possible. In this matter the Admiralty has been considerably helped by the generosity of members of the public who have subscribed and are still subscribing to funds established for the purpose of providing amenities for men of the Royal Navy.

The question of the amenities available to the men in small ships during their off duty periods is constantly studied. Wherever possible arrangements are made to relieve the crews as soon as they come into harbour by strong bodies of shore workmen who help in refitting and repair processes and by naval personnel who assist with boiler cleaning.