§ 98. Sir W. Smithers
asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Admiralty whether, in view of the fact that his mother is very ill and that he is in Group 60, he will arrange for the immediate return by air to this country of C/ JX541679 A.B. N. Wilmot.
Compassionate leave to visit parents who are ill is granted only if the man is needed at home and if no other brother or sister is available. I understand that Wilmot's father and four brothers are at home and in the circumstances I regret that it is not possible to grant compassionate leave. The hon. Member will understand that the number of cases of serious illness of parents is large; and that if compassionate leave were extended to cover every such case, considerable difficulties would arise both in the manning of the Fleet and in finding passages. I have, however, ascertained that Wilmot's term of service abroad is nearing its end and his commanding officer, who is aware of the mother's illness, will arrange for his return home as soon as it is due.