Batmen (Duties)

Part of Oral Answers to Questions — Royal Air Force – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 2nd November 1955.

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Photo of Mr Denis Howell Mr Denis Howell , Birmingham All Saints 12:00 am, 2nd November 1955

Is the Minister not aware that there is a considerable difference of definition between what the Services regard as volunteering and what other people regard as volunteering? Is he not further aware that, of the nine detailed statements of batmen at Halton Camp, which I sent him—batmen who were being asked to fetch coal, make beds, press ladies' clothes and take children to school—not one has been refuted? Is it not scandalous that three National Service men and three full-time men out of these nine should so misuse their Service time? What steps will he take to end this system of having batmen for officers' wives—a costly system, which most of the rest of the country cannot afford, and our wives and others have to go without?