asked the Secretary of State for Air whether he is aware that two of the most expert reporters from the Official Gallery of the House of Commons are serving in the R.A.F.; how many applications have been made for their release; and with what result.
The case of one of the airmen referred to was the subject of correspondence about a year ago, but so far as I am aware no formal application has been received for release of either of these men. If it is now decided to pursue their cases, it would be for you, Mr. Speaker, to send applications to my right hon. Friend the Chancellor of the Exchequer, who, in the first instance, considers all applications for the release of civil servants from the Forces.
Will my right hon. Friend bear in mind that if he does receive an official request for the release of these officers of the House, it will, in fact, be a request from the whole of this honourable House; and will he, therefore, immediately accede to it?
It will come to me through the Chancellor of the Exchequer.