HC Deb 18 September 1940 vol 365 cc164-5W
Mr. C. Wilson

asked the Secretary of State for War who was responsible for the transfer of Peter Horn, a boy of 16½ years of age, to Australia, without any communication whatever with the person in this country who had made herself responsible to the Home Office for his education, training and maintenance until he was 18 years of age; and who is responsible that no accurate lists have been kept of those so transferred

Sir E. Grigg

Peter Horn was sent to Australia on 10th July as the result of a general order that all single male enemy aliens over the age of 16 were to be sent in preference to married men. It was not possible in the time available to consult parents or guardians. Accurate lists are in possession of the War Office.

Mr. Wilson

asked the Secretary of State for War whether he is aware that a German from Oxford, interned in the Central Promenade camp, Douglas, was informed that his four sons had been sent to the Onchan camp and that arrangements were being made for their transportation overseas; that he was given five minutes in which to decide whether he would approve of their going, and that he consented on condition that the youngest son, a boy of 16 years of age, should be allowed to travel in the same boat with the older boys, age 22 to 26, but he was not allowed to see them during their internment nor before they sailed, and that he later discovered that the youngest boy had not been allowed to travel with his elder brothers but had been sent in a separate boat; who was responsible for this; and will suitable action be taken against him?

Sir E. Grigg

I am informed that Professor Pringsheim and his three eldest sons were interned at Central Promenade Camp; the youngest was at Onchan Camp. The professor was not asked to approve of their going overseas. The three eldest were sent on a general order to send all single men between the ages of 20 and 30. They sailed on steamship "Ettrick" on 3rd July. The professor saw them before they went. The youngest son did not go with them because the lower age limit was then 20. For the next ship, steamship "Sobieski," which sailed on 4th July, the age limit for single men was lowered to 16 in order to send as few married men as possible. Owing to the very short notice at which the ship sailed, it was not possible for the professor to see this boy before he sailed.