HC Deb 05 August 1943 vol 391 cc2480-1W
Mr. Gallacher

asked the First Lord of the Admiralty whether he is aware of the substitution of lower ratings and supply ratings for higher ratings in complements of seagoing ships on the grounds that the higher ratings are not available and also of the large increase in the number of paymaster rear-admirals, paymaster captains and secretaries drawing the pay of higher ranks and extra pay at the same time; and is he satisfied that money is not being designedly saved on ratings, at the expense of seagoing efficiency, to meet the cost of the higher ranks referred to?

Mr. Alexander

The greater war-time responsibilities falling upon the accountant branch have increased the number of appointments for which officers of higher ranks are required, and in common with other naval officers, accountant officers when given appointments carrying higher rank have been granted the acting higher rank for the duration of their appointments. I can assure the hon. Member that there is not the slightest foundation for his suggestion that any increased cost is being met at the expense of ratings' appointments. Men performing the duties of higher ratings allowed by complement are in general given the pay of the higher rating, provided that they do the duties for more than a month and do them satisfactorily.