HC Deb 21 November 1945 vol 416 cc532-9W
Mr. Pickthorn

asked the First Lord of the Admiralty by how much each of the separate categories of specialist officers lags, for demobilisation, behind the executive category; and whether each such category can now be given a rough forecast of dates of release that may be hoped for, unless some unexpected factor intervenes.

Mr. Dugdale

The following is a tentative programme of releases for the various Officer Branches which will give the hon. Member the information he seeks.

Branch. Group. Target date for dispersal.
Executive (including Fighter Direction Officers) 19–22 31st December, 1459.
23–25 31st January, 1946.
Warrant and Ex-Warrant Officers 26 & 27 28th February.
Special and Electrical R.N.V.R. 28 & 29 31st March.
Naval Air Arm Officers (except fighter Direction Officers) (including Warrant and ex-Warrant Officers). 24–30 31st December, 1945.
31–35 31st January, 1946.
36–38 28th February.
39–41 31st March.
Combined Operations Executive Officers 26–29 31st December, 1945.
30–32 31st January, 1946.
33–37 28th February.
38–40 31st March.
Engineers (including Warrant and ex-Warrant Officers) 8–10 31st December, 1945.
11–14 31st January, 1946.
15–18 28th February.
19–21 31st March.
Air Engineers (including Warrant and ex-Warrant Officers) 20–25 31st December, 1945.
26–29 31st January, 1946.
30–33 28th February.
34–37 31st March.
Supply 1–16 31st December, 1945.
17 & 18 20th January, 1946.
19 31st January.
20 28th February.
21 10th March.
22 31st March.
Cypher 1–29 31st December, 1045.
30 31st January, 1946.
31 28th February.
32 31st March.
Medical Officers 17–20 31st December, 1945.
21–22 31st January, 1946.
23–2428th February.
25–26 31st March.
Dental Officers 18–22 31st December, 1945.
23–24 31st January, 1946.
25– 27 28th February.
28–29 31st March.
Instructor and Schoolmaster Officers (including Warrant and ex-Warrant Officers). 16–21 31st December, 1945.
22 31st January, 19 |6.
23 28th February.
24 31st March.
Chaplains 16–18 31st December, 1945.
19–23 (part) 31st January, 1946.
23(part)—.29 28th February.
30–34 31st March.
Royal Marines (including Warrant and Ex-Warrant Officers) 19–24 31st December, 1945.
25–26 31st January.
27 28th February.
28–30 31st March.
W.K.N.S. Officers:—
Administrative 17–20 31st December, 1945.
21–22 31st January, 1946.
23–25 28th February.
26–28 31st March.
W.R.N.S. Officers:—
Non-administrative 31–45 1st January to 31st March.
NOTE:Certain categories of W.R.N.S. Officers have been released up to Group 40 up to 31st December, 1945.

Branch. Group. Target date for dispersal.
Supply and Officers
Writer Officers 1–2 31st December, 1945.
3 15th January,
4 31st January,
5 15th February,
6 31st March.
Stores Officers 1–5 31st December, 1945.
6 31st January,
7 31st March.
Cookery Officers 1–7 31st December, 1945.
8 15th February,
9 31st March.
Catering Officers 1–5 31st December, 1945.
6 31st January,
7 28th February,
8 31st March.
Wardmasters 1–3 31st December, 1945.
4 31st January,
5 28th February,
6 31st March.

2. The following is the tentative forecast of the Age and Service Groups of Officers of the various categories to be dispersed in the period April to June, 1946. It is emphasised that while the forecast is the best that can be made at the present time, some variations in the dispersal elates of the various Age and Service Groups may become necessary.
Executive (including F.D.O's.), Warrant and Ex-Warrant Officers, Special and Electrical, R.N.V.R. 30 & 31 30th April.
32–34 31st May.
35–37 30th June.
Naval Air Arm Officers (except F.D.O's.) (including Warrant and Ex-Warrant Officers). 41 to between 45 & 50 30th June.
Combined Operations Executive Officers 41 & 42 30th April.
43 & 44 31.st May.
45 30th June.
Engineers (including Warrant and ex-Warrant Officers) 22–24 30th April.
25–27 31st May.
28–30 30th June.
Air Engineers (including Warrant and ex-Warrant Officers) 38–40 30th April.
41–43 31st May.
44–46 30th June.
Supply 23 30th April.
24 31st May.
25 30th June.
Cypher 33 30th April.
34 31st May.
35 30th June.
Medical Officers 27–29 30th April.
30–32 31st May.
33–35 30th June.
Dental Officers 30–31 30th April.
32–35 31st May.
36–39 30th June.
Instructors and Schoolmaster Officers (including Warrant and ex-Warrant Officers). 25 30th April.
26 31st May.
27 30th June.
Chaplains 35–39 (part) 30th April.
39 (part)—42(part)— 31st May.
42 (part)—44 (part)— 30th June.
Royal Marines (including Warrant and ex-Warrant Officers) 31–36 30th April.
37–42 31st May.
43–48 30th June.
W.R.N.S. Officers:—
Administrative 29–32 30th April.
33–36 31st May.
37–40 30th Tune.
W.R.N.S. Officers:—
Non-Administrative 46–50 31st May.
51& above 30th June.

Branch. Group. Target date for dispersal.
Warrant and ex-Warrant Officers.
Supply and Secretariat.
Writer Officers 7 30th April.
13 30th June.
Stores Officers 8 30th April.
10 31st May.
12 30th June.
Cookery Officers 10 31st May.
12 30th June.
Catering Officers 9 30th April.
10 31st May.
12 30th June.
Wardmasters 7 30th April.
8 31st May.
10 30th June.

Captain Prescott

asked the First Lord of the Admiralty why and to what extent the demobilisation of stokers is being retarded.

Mr. Dugdale

The release of stoker ratings is at present five groups behind the average rate of release for the whole of the Royal Navy. The reason for this difference is that the requirements of the various branches do not decrease at equal rates, and there is at present a serious shortage of stoker ratings in relation to the Navy's continuing commitments. Many are being employed in the cruisers and escort carriers which are now being used as troop ships to bring home personnel from the Far East, for release. A programme of training and dilution has been in progress for some months and will, we hope, enable us to speed up the rate of release, of stokers, but, as the hon. and gallant Member will appreciate, the necessary training takes time.

Mr. Pickthorn

asked the First Lord of the Admiralty how many Instructor Lieutenants and how many Schoolmasters R.N., H.O., have been released under Class B.

Mr. Dugdale

Block releases under Class B are not normally offered to schoolmasters, R.N., as they are all members of the teaching profession, and will all return to that profession on release from service. They are, therefore, released in Class A in order of age arid service groups. In addition to those released under Class A, five instructor officers and one schoolmaster, R.N., have so far been released under Class B as specialists. This means that they have been nominated for release for posts outside the genera] teaching profession for which they have special qualifications.

Mr. Baldwin

asked the First Lord of the Admiralty why officers and other ranks are sent from Southend to a remote part of the Scottish coast at Kilcreggan, Dunbartonshire, where the men are wasting their time, for demobilisation; and whether he will return immediately to civilian life the naval medical officers who are at present stationed there doing little duty, in order to relieve the present shortage of doctors and surgeons.

Mr. Dugdale

The officers and men to whom the hon. hon. Member refers are part of Combined Operations. The residential and hotel property in which they were accommodated at Southend is urgently required. They were therefore transferred to Scotland, to a base near which the main body of Combined Operations is situated, and which contains the main Pay and Drafting organisations. This transfer resulted in a temporary hold-up of releases, but the accumulation is being rapidly reduced, and by Christmas the period of waiting will be not more than one week. The medical officers appointed to this base are fully occupied examining men prior to their release, but every effort is being made to return Naval medical officers to civil life.

Mr. Touche

asked the First Lord of the Admiralty if he is aware that on 31st March next the demobilisation of officers of the Supply Branch of the R.N. is likely to be 18 groups behind that of executive officers; and whether any action is being taken to avoid this discrepancy in the rate of demobilisation.

Mr. Dugdale

According to the present programme, the rate of release of Supply Branch officers will be only seven groups behind on the date mentioned, and not 18 groups as stated in the Question the answer to the second part of the Question is contained in the reply my right hon. Friend gave the hon. Member on 31st October.