Duke of York's Royal Military School, Dover

Oral Answers to Questions — Defence – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 3 December 1969.

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Photo of Mr Ian Orr-Ewing Mr Ian Orr-Ewing , Hendon North 12:00, 3 December 1969

asked the Secretary of State for Defence what is the annual cost of maintaining the Duke of York's Royal Military School, Dover; and on which Vote the cost falls.

Photo of Mr Ivor Richard Mr Ivor Richard , Barons Court

Staff salaries and wages are about £170,000 annually. No separate record is kept of other running costs. Expenditure is borne on normal Defence and M.P.B.W. Votes.

Photo of Mr Ian Orr-Ewing Mr Ian Orr-Ewing , Hendon North

Is the hon. Gentleman aware that it now appears that something over 80 per cent. from this school do not join the Armed Forces? Is it realistic to put the cost of this school, which is approximately the equivalent of maintaining a single army battalion, on to the Defence Vote now that there is a civilian headmaster and the great majority of the school is entirely civilianised?

Photo of Mr Ivor Richard Mr Ivor Richard , Barons Court

As the hon. Member will know, the object of the school is not to produce recruits for the Regular Army. It was originally provided to provide care and training for orphaned sons and daughters of Regular soldiers of the British Army. It has a very fine record. Although in principle I am in favour of removing all such expenditure from the Defence Vote as quickly as possible, in all the circumstances I do not think that possible in this case.