HC Deb 01 October 1942 vol 383 cc955-6W
Sir Smedley Crooke

asked the Secretary of State for War whether he is aware that, while crews of submarines who are captured by the enemy during a raid continue to be credited by the Admiralty with their extra pay, men of the Commandos who are taken by the enemy forfeit such of their extra pay, as they are entitled to, under the present War Office Regulations; and will he take steps to remedy this injustice?

Mr. A. Henderson

Submarine crews who become prisoners of war continue to be credited with that part of their submarine pay which is payable continuously to all members of the submarine branch. Prisoners are not credited with that part of their submarine pay which they receive only when they are members of the crew of a submarine in commission. Officers and soldiers in Army Commandos do not receive extra pay for serving with these special formations. I would refer my hon. Friend to the answer given to my hon. and gallant Friend the Member for Stockport (Wing-Commander Hulbert) by the Deputy Prime Minister on 23rd June of this year. Commandos receive a special allowance to meet certain expenses which do not continue when they are captured by the enemy. This allowance like other allowances (except those payable in respect of families or other dependants) ceases on capture, but they continue to be credited with the full pay appropriate to their rank at the date of capture. I am unable to accept the suggestion that there is inequality of treatment in this respect between crews of submarines and soldiers serving in Commandos.