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Transfers To Army

Volume 411: debated on Wednesday 6 June 1945

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asked the Secretary of State for Air the number of men transferred from the R.A.F. to the Army to date; whether such transfers were limited to certain age groups and also trades and, if so, which; what difference such transfers will make to the dates of release and rates of pay of those transferred; the estimated time it is expected their Army training will take; and the extent to which the loss of these men to the R.A.F. will postpone the group-release of R.A.F. personnel beyond that announced as probable for the Army.

The number of airmen transferred to the Army is 10,317. They were non-regular airmen mustered as aircraft hands (general duties) or to certain selected trades and were in age and service release groups not earlier than 17. Age limits and medical category were also prescribed. Details are given below. For information about release and pay, I would refer the hon. Member to the comprehensive reply given to the hon. Member for Maldon (Mr.Driberg) on 16th May. The duration of Army training is a matter for my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for War, but I understand that the normal period is 17 weeks. Apart from fresh intake the effect of these transfers upon the group release of Royal Air Force personnel as a whole will be negligible.

Following are the details:

Requirements regarding age, medical category and trade.

Transfer was limited to airmen who were not under 18½ years of age or over 35 years of age, and who were medically fit for service overseas in combatant units. The selected trades were:

  • R.A.F. Regiment.
  • Maintenance Assistant.
  • Wireless Operator.
  • Carpenter II.
  • Balloon Operator.
  • Ground Observer.
  • Electrician II.
  • Instrument Repairer II.
  • Photographer.
  • Armament Assistant.
  • Service Police.
  • M.T. Driver.
  • Fitter Groups.