HC Deb 06 May 1966 vol 727 cc164-5W
Mr. Dobson

asked the Secretary of State for Defence what organisation and deployment he proposes for Category Three of the Territorial and Army Volunteer Reserve, the Territorials.

Mr. Reynolds

The Territorials will have an establishment of just under 29,000 and a maximum strength in peace time of about 23,000, representing 80 per cent. of the establishment. They will be organised into 87 infantry-type units and their deployment will be related to the civil defence regional organisation. Most civil defence sub-regions will have 3 units of Territorials, though some will have more or fewer as local circumstances dictate.

In war it is already planned that there will be in each sub-region a regular officer of one of the three Services as military commander, who will be responsible to the sub-regional commissioner for command of all regular and reserve units in the sub-region; it is from these officers that Territorial units will take their war-time orders.

In peacetime the strength of the average Territorial unit will not be more than about 270 and will comprise three rifle companies about 75 strong, together with a small headquarters, and reconnaissance, pioneer and signals platoons. Again, some units will have more or fewer companies according to local circumstances. Most units will have two training centres of their own and will share a third with a volunteer unit. In each civil defence sub-region will also be a Signals troop, numbering about 30, to serve the military commander; there will be up to 10 posts for W.R.A.C. in this troop.