§ Mr. J. McKay
asked the Secretary of State for War whether, to help the Forces to get home at Christmas and the New Year he will consider a scheme whereby a motor car owner desirous of helping, goes to his nearest military or R.A.F. authority and offers to convey so many people to a certain place on a given date, the authority to give a letter confirming the arrangements and entitling the motor car owner to an extra ration of petrol on his December or January basic ration to meet the loss involved.
§ Mr. Bellenger
Owing to the complicated arrangements to be made with many hundreds of Army and R.A.F. units and sub-units all over the United Kingdom it would not be possible to arrange a workable scheme of this kind in time for the Christmas period. I would also refer my hon. Friend to the reply I gave on 12th December to a Question by the hon. Member for Twickenham (Mr. Keeling).
§ Mr. Skeffington
asked the Secretary of State for War whether he is aware of the Southern Command order prohibiting troops from travelling by rail, to or through London, between 22nd and 29th December, for the purpose of easing civilian travel; and whether he will take steps to cancel this order as it is a contravention of the pledge given a few weeks ago that there would be no restriction on rail travel for troops this Christmas.
§ Mr. Bellenger
I am aware of this order which, as explained by my right hon. Friend yesterday in reply to a Question by my hon. Friend the Member for Newport, had the effect of extending the period of Christmas leave of those soldiers in the Command who would otherwise have had to travel by rail between 22nd and 27th December.1481W