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Officers' Clothing And Equipment

Volume 387: debated on Tuesday 23 March 1943

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14.

asked the Secretary of State for War when it is proposed to dress cadets of the Army and the Auxiliary Territorial Service on taking up commissions in Priority A cloth as laid down in Priority A scheme issued by the Army Council and the Board of Trade in September, 1941, so that newly commissioned officers shall get the best cloth obtainable made to a strict schedule and at a maximum price as laid down in the Board of Trade Order, Goods and Services (Price Control) No. 2556?

Instructions about the scheme referred to by my hon. Friend were issued on 8th February. The scheme should ensure that tailor-made uniforms of a standard range of qualities are available for officers (including A.T.S. officers) at moderate prices. I understand that stocks of the cloths covered by the scheme are in the hands of military tailors who have been informed of the specifications of the garments and of the maximum prices laid down by the Board of Trade. Officers are, however, not compelled to buy these cloths. They buy them only if they wish to.

Why is it that the War Office has not shown the slightest desire to conform to its own Regulations? Is it because of the influence of the vested interests in the tailoring trade?

I find the hon. Member's question completely incomprehensible. He had better put down a Question saying in what respect they do not observe the Regulations.

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware the tailoring trade follow by getting scores of licences to sell uniforms contrary to Army Regulations?

15.

asked the Secretary of State for War whether he is now in a position to issue details of the new scheme for extending the facilities for officers to obtain supplies of clothing and equipment through the quartermaster's stores?

I regret that all the details have not yet been settled, but I hope an announcement will be made before long.