HC Deb 21 May 1980 vol 985 cc233-4W
Mrs. Renée Short

asked the Secretary of State for Defence how much duty-free tobacco was supplied to officers and men in the Royal Navy in each year since 1970.

Mr. Speed

Figures are not immediately available in the form requested, but numbers of duty-free cigarettes provided to the Royal Navy from 1976 have been:

1976 162
1977 174
1978 145
1979 131

Young people may enter specifically as juniors or alongside adult entrants, according to their Service, age and trade. Table 1 below shows the age distribution of recruits for the United Kingdom as a whole, while table 2 shows the regional distribution for recruits of all ages. The regional distribution for those under 18 is unlikely to differ very substantially.

Mrs. Renée Short

asked the Secretary of State for Defence what is his assessment of the effects of the continued provision of duty-free tobacco in the Royal Navy on the cost of maintaining an active and healthy naval force.

Mr. Speed

The provision of duty-free tobacco is a long-standing element in naval conditions of service, still valued by many Service men. The possibility that it might have an effect on health in the Royal Navy is being taken into account as we review policy towards smoking.

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