§ Mr. Loveridge
asked the Secretary of State for Defence what amounts of money will be paid in compensation, in each case to the next of kin, of those members of the Royal Navy and reservists who lost their lives when the minesweeper HMS "Fittleton" sank on 20th September 1976.
§ Mr. Duffy
It is not the custom of my Department to disclose details of individual awards without the consent of those involved. Under the Ministry of Defence Attributable Benefits for Reservists Scheme the current pension for widows of reservists whose death is due to service is £481.70 a year, with a further £160.58 a year for each of up to four dependent children. These rates will be increased to £548.17 a year and £182.73 a year, respectively, with effect from 1st December 1976. In addition, a war widow's pension of at least £894.40 is payable by the Department of Health and Social Security, which is also subject to increase in respect of dependent children. These rates will be increased from 169W 15th November 1976. Where an unmarried reservist is killed in similar circumstances the Ministry of Defence pays a gratuity of £321.14 to his estate and the Forces Family Pension Scheme makes similar provision of £2,902 for unmarried Regular Service men. No married members of the Royal Navy were killed.
§ Mr. Loveridge
asked the Secretary of State for Defence if the Government has applied Section 10 of the Crown Proceedings Act 1947 to the cases of the nine part-time Royal Naval reservists killed when HMS "Fittleton" sank on 20th September, which would deny the next of kin the right to sue for any damages.