To ask Her Majesty's Government what is the current shortfall in personnel in the (1) Army, (2) Royal Marines, (3) Royal Navy, (4) Royal Air Force; what effect this has had on leave arrangements for members of those services; and what has been the impact on the health and wellbeing of members of the armed forces.
Information on the current strength of the UK Armed Forces, including a breakdown by Service, can be found at Excel Table 3A of the UK Armed Forces Quarterly Service Personnel Statistics at the following link: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/quarterly-service-personnel-statistics-2018.
A copy of Table 3a is attached.
Although the Armed Forces' strengths are below the target level they continue to meet all operational commitments. Our approach to monitoring capability "pinch points" helps to identify risks in a timely fashion so we can respond appropriately. We are very conscious of the leave and welfare needs of the Armed Forces and closely monitor the impact on the individuals, particularly in areas where there are shortages.