72. Dr. Bennett
asked the First Lord of the Admiralty what are the terms of the Queen's Regulations or Admiralty Instructions or other order under which a man failing to vacate married quarters within 28 days of his draft order is debarred from married quarters elsewhere for a period of not less than five years; whether he has considered the effect of this order on the borough of Gosport, where so great a part of the Royal Navy is accommodated, in constantly compelling the rehousing of families at 28 days' notice; and whether he will modify this order or his drafting policy in this area forthwith to avoid inflicting injustice.
§ Mr. J. P. L. Thomas
I am sending a copy of the relevant Admiralty Fleet Order, No. 3655/51, to my hon. Friend.
I fully appreciate the shortage of housing in the borough of Gosport and elsewhere, but married quarters are intended for use by those serving in the neighbouring establishments and it would be manifestly unfair to allow the families of men serving elsewhere to continue to occupy them indefinitely. The Admiralty Fleet Order makes it clear that, when naval personnel are drafted elsewhere, they will be required to give up their married quarter and should, therefore, find other accommodation well in advance of their next draft.
The Fleet Order is administered with the greatest care and sympathy and I am satisfied that such regulations are necessary to deal with the occasional difficult case that arises.