Class Z Reserve

Oral Answers to Questions — British Army – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 29th May 1951.

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Photo of Major Henry Spence Major Henry Spence , Aberdeenshire West 12:00 am, 29th May 1951

asked the Secretary of State for War if he will place working owners of one-man butchery businesses in an exempt category under the Class Z scheme in the interests of food distribution.

Photo of Mr Woodrow Wyatt Mr Woodrow Wyatt , Birmingham Aston

No, Sir. Each case has to be considered on its merits.

Photo of Major Henry Spence Major Henry Spence , Aberdeenshire West

Has the hon. Gentleman had consultations with his right hon. Friend the Minister of Food to ensure that the machinery of distribution can be equitably continued in the case of individual men? While agreeing with the principle that no one shall be exempted, might I ask him whether the whole matter has been examined with the Ministry of Food to ensure equitable distribution?

Photo of Mr Woodrow Wyatt Mr Woodrow Wyatt , Birmingham Aston

The answer to the first part of the question is "Yes, Sir." The answer to the second part is that I can give an assurance that in no case has anybody been refused exemption where hardship would be caused to the local community or where the closing down of his own business would be involved.

Photo of Sir Austin Hudson Sir Austin Hudson , Lewisham North

Would the hon. Gentleman expedite the replies to Members of Parliament on questions arising from Class Z cases, because June is near and some of these people are most anxious?

Photo of Mr Woodrow Wyatt Mr Woodrow Wyatt , Birmingham Aston

The hon. Gentleman will appreciate that we get hundreds of applications every day, and every effort is made to answer them as quickly as possible.

Photo of Mr George Thomas Mr George Thomas , Cardiff West

asked the Secretary of State for War whether he will reconsider the recall as a Z reservist of Mr. Trevor Pugh, Cardiff, about whom he has received full particulars, in view of the fact that it is nine years since Mr. Pugh handled a gun last and that he was a prisoner of war in Japan where international conventions for the treatment of prisoners were ignored.

Photo of Mr Woodrow Wyatt Mr Woodrow Wyatt , Birmingham Aston

No, Sir. My predecessor explained in his letter of 25th April to my hon. Friend that there were not sufficient grounds to justify a cancellation of recall in this case.

Photo of Mr George Thomas Mr George Thomas , Cardiff West

Does my hon. Friend state that he believes a fortnight's training will bring this man up to a state of military preparedness so that he can be of use?

Photo of Mr Woodrow Wyatt Mr Woodrow Wyatt , Birmingham Aston

I am certainly able to state that a fortnight's training will make him a much better soldier than the absence of a fortnight's training.

Photo of Sir Frank Medlicott Sir Frank Medlicott , Norfolk Central

asked the Secretary of State for War if he is aware that Mr. E. C. Howe, Horsford, Norwich, a disabled ex-Service man who was a prisoner of war of the Japanese for three and a half years, has been called up as a Z reservist; and if he will arrange to have this calling-up cancelled.

Photo of Mr Woodrow Wyatt Mr Woodrow Wyatt , Birmingham Aston

I should be obliged if the hon. and gallant Member would let me know Mr. Howe's full Army details, so that his case can be examined.