HC Deb 26 January 1948 vol 446 cc104-5W
136. Mr. Platts-Mills

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs how long the Headquarters of the Commander-in-Chief of the American Naval Forces in the Eastern Atlantic and Mediterranean has been located in London; and what were the terms of the agreement under which these Headquarters were so located.

Mr. Mayhew

The Headquarters of the Commander-in-Chief of the United States, Naval Forces in the Eastern Atlantic and Mediterranean, has been established in London since 1st November, 1947. There has, however, been a United States Naval Staff in London since April, 1941, when an officer of Flag Rank was attached to the American Embassy as Special United States Naval Observer. A year later the officer holding this post was also given an operational command as Commander United States Naval Forces, Europe, and this situation still continues. This followed a precedent established in the 1914–18 war when a similar Headquarters with similar duties was also located in London. The title of the United States Naval Headquarters here has, however, for administrative and operational reasons, since been modified on two occasions, the last being, as stated above, on 1st November, 1947. Confirming approval for the presence of a United States Naval Officer of Flag Rank and Staff in London was given by His Majesty's Government and the United States Government in May, 1941.