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Commissions (Seamen Ratings)

Volume 344: debated on Wednesday 1 March 1939

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asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Admiralty whether he will state the number of seamen ratings who have been recommended on the special recommendation form for commissioned rank, in the harbour training establishments or at sea, who are now eligible to appear before the Fleet Selection Boards; and the numbers of Royal Naval Reserve officers it is intended to enter from the Mercantile Marine this year?

Apart from the 42 ratings now undergoing special instruction after being recommended by Fleet Boards, 179 seaman ratings have been specially reported on as possible candidates for commissioned rank. It has not been possible in the time available to ascertain whether all of these will be eligible, if recommended by their Commanding Officer, to appear before the Fleet Selection Boards this year. The hon. Member will, however, appreciate that in some cases very young ratings who have passed the Educational Test Grade II and are regarded as possible future candidates for promotion, may, nevertheless, be regarded by their Commanding Officers as insufficiently experienced for recommendation this year.I am not yet in a position to announce the numbers which may be entered in the server specialists, respectively, in 1938; the numbers now undergoing training, with the totals; and in each case the number of officers promoted from the lower deck?

Following is the information: coming year from the R.N.R., but details of a new scheme which includes transfer of officers from the Mercantile Marine, employment of R.N.V.R. officers in the Fleet for a period, and the special promotion of Warrant Officers to Lieutenant will, I hope, be issued next week.