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Requisitioned Grammar School

Volume 388: debated on Thursday 8 April 1943

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asked the Secretary of State for War whether he is aware that a certain grammar school, of which he has been informed, which was requisitioned in 1940, has been occupied since the beginning of 1943 by about 50 officers and men and that no combatant training is now being carried on; whether he is satisfied that there is further justification for this costly occupation which has created great inconvenience; and, in view of the availability of other suitable accommodation and of the urgent need of the school for educational purposes, he will consent to release these premises?

I am informed that until March of this year on the average about 280 non-commissioned officers and men and a few officers were accommodated in this school. Since then it has been put to a different use, and only about 170 of all ranks have been accommodated there, but as over half of them are officers the available space is fully taken up. Towards the end of last year the War Department carefully considered the possibility of giving up this accommodation, but I regret that no suitable alternative could be found.

Is the hon. and learned Gentleman aware that the military authorities did actually inform the City Council that they could have this school back, but later on withdrew that permission and showed a great amount of indecision as to their actually needing the school at all. Will he please go into the matter afresh, when I am sure he will be able to come to a definite conclusion?

If my hon. Friend will give me particulars of any suitable alternative accommodation, I shall be glad to look into the matter.