HC Deb 08 February 1955 vol 536 cc201-2W
Mr. Bellenger

asked the First Lord of the Admiralty the period of oversea service now in force.

Mr. J. P. L. Thomas

Hitherto the maximum period has been 2½ years but this is being reduced on the majority of overseas stations as a result of the General Service Commission scheme about which I informed the House when introducing the Navy Estimates for 1954–55 on 9th March, 1954. About two-thirds of the ships due to be manned under this scheme are already so manned; for these the maximum period of service abroad is 12 months. For men on other forms of overseas service, we are making good progress with the reduction of the maximum period for men not accompanied by their families to 18 months. There will, however, still be men who choose longer periods of service in posts in which they can be accompanied by their families.