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Armed Forces: Deployment

Volume 476: debated on Monday 2 June 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence which force elements reported (a) no serious or critical and (b) no critical weakness against (i) the ability to generate from peacetime readiness to immediate readiness for deployment on operations and (ii) required peacetime readiness levels in each year since 2004-05. (206915)

Information concerning readiness statistics against PSA targets is published in the Department's Annual Report and Accounts and quarterly performance reports, copies of which are available in the Library of the House. This information is broken down into land, maritime and air force elements. More detailed differentiation is not reported for reasons of national security.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the peacetime establishment was of (a) 3rd Regiment Royal Horse Artillery, (b) 1st Battalion The Royal Regiment of Fusiliers and (c) The Highlanders, 4th Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland before deployment to Iraq; what the strength on deployment of each unit is; how many reinforcements each received from (i) the regular Army, (ii) the Territorial Army and (iii) the regular Army Reserves; and how many of all ranks in each are remaining in the UK (A) on recruitment duties, (B) physically unfit to deploy and (C) in barracks in reserve. (207088)

[holding answer 22 May 2008]: The peacetime establishment of the requested units as at 1 June 2008 is shown in the following table. As disclosure of exact numbers would be likely to prejudice the capability, effectiveness and security of our armed forces, I have rounded numbers to the nearest 100.

Unit

Peacetime establishment prior to deployment

3 RHA

500

1 RRF

700

4 SCOTS

700

I am unable to provide the remainder of the information requested until these units have completed their deployment to Iraq. I will write to the hon. Member in due course.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the peacetime establishment was of (a) 7th Parachute Regiment, Royal Horse Artillery, (b) The Royal Highland Fusiliers, 2nd Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland and (c) The Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders, 5th Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland before deployment to Afghanistan; what the strength of each on deployment was; how many reinforcements were received by each from (i) the regular Army, (ii) the Territorial Army and (iii) the regular Army Reserves; and how many of all ranks of each are remaining in the UK (A) on recruitment duties, (B) physically unfit to deploy and (C) in barracks in reserve. (207089)

[holding answer 22 May 2008]: The following table provides the information requested: however as disclosure of exact numbers would or would be likely to prejudice the capability, effectiveness and security of our armed forces, I have rounded numbers to the nearest 100 or where less than 100 to the nearest 10, as appropriate.

7 PARA RHA

2 Scots

5 Scots

Peace Establishment

500

600

700

Deployed Strength

400

400

500

TA reinforcements

<10

<10

50

Reg Reserves Reinforcements

0

0

<10

Regular Army

100

0

50

Unfit to deploy

40

70

60

Recruitment duties

<10

10

20

Rear Party

70

30

60

7 Para RHA are heavily reinforced from other Regular Army units due to their current role in theatre. This is not unusual for specialist roles.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what headings are used to sub-categorise troops unfit to deploy; and how many troops from (a) 3rd Regiment Royal Horse Artillery, (b) 1st Battalion The Royal Regiment of Fusiliers, (c) The Highlanders, 4th Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland, (d) 7th Parachute Regiment, Royal Horse Artillery, (e) The Royal Highland Fusiliers, 2nd Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland and (f) The Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders, 5th Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland are classified under each of those headings. (207090)

[holding answer 22 May 2008]: Soldiers who are unfit to deploy on operations are categorised as either non-available or non-effective. These are additionally sub-categorised as being either medical or G1 (personnel) reasons. Personnel who are classed as non-available for medical or personnel reasons may still be able to make a contribution to the Unit Rear Party. Personnel who are classed as non-effective are unfit for any task.

The number of troops categorised as unfit to deploy in the requested units as at 1 March 2008 are shown in the following table.

Non-availableNon-effective

Unit

Medical

G1

Medical

G1

Total unable to deploy

3 RHA

13

40

4

0

57

7 PARA RHA

10

29

1

0

40

1 RRF

18

12

5

2

37

4 SCOTS

15

21

0

0

36

2 SCOTS

33

32

5

0

70

5 SCOTS

9

49

3

0

61

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many troops from 3rd Regiment Royal Horse Artillery have been sent to Afghanistan; and whether he plans to transfer these troops to Iraq to rejoin their regiment. (207091)

[holding answer 22 May 2008]: I am withholding the exact number of troops from 3rd Regiment Royal Horse Artillery deployed in Afghanistan as its release would, or would be likely to, prejudice the capability, effectiveness or security of the armed forces. There are currently no plans to transfer these troops to Iraq to rejoin their regiment. Once they have completed their commitments in Afghanistan, they will be reunited with the regiment on return to the UK.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence from which battalions or regiments reinforcements have been taken to provide troops to (a) 3rd Regiment Royal Horse Artillery, (b) 1st Battalion The Royal Regiment of Fusiliers, (c) The Highlanders, 4th Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland, (d) 7th Parachute Regiment Royal Horse Artillery, (e) The Royal Highland Fusiliers, 2nd Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland and (f) The Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders, 5th Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland; and how many reinforcements have been taken from each battalion or regiment. (207092)

[holding answer 22 May 2008]: The units and number of individuals which are providing reinforcements for the requested regiments and battalions are shown as follows:

Units providing reinforcements

Number provided

3 Regt RHA

0

0

1 RRF

The Royal Regiment of Gibraltar

<20

5th Battalion The Royal Regiment of Fusiliers

<10

4th Battalion The Mercian Regiment

<10

4 Scots

0

0

7 Para RHA

5 Scots

<10

2 Scots

<10

3rd Battalion The Parachute Regiment

<10

3 Regt RHA

<100

26th Regiment Royal Artillery

<10

1st Battalion The Royal Irish Regiment

<10

13th Regiment Royal Logistic Corps

<10

Armoured Division Signal Regt

<10

Australian Army

<20

Royal Air Force

<20

2 Scots

Various TA units

<10

5 Scots

0

0

As disclosure of exact numbers would be likely to prejudice the capability, effectiveness and security of our armed forces, I have rounded numbers to the nearest 100, or where less than 100 to the nearest 10.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to the Answer of 15 May 2008, Official Report, column 1702W, on armed forces deployment, how the figures for the (a) army, (b) Royal Air Force and (c) Royal Navy and Royal Marines break down between regular and reserve personnel. (207405)

In very broad terms, using the methodology applied in my previous answer on 15 May 2008, Official Report, column 1702W, approximately 11 per cent. of the Regular Army is preparing for operations and the same proportion has recently returned from operations. For the Territorial Army the equivalent proportion is approximately 2.5 per cent. in each case. For the RAF, the proportion of reservists contained within the overall numbers about to deploy and recently returned from operations fluctuates considerably, and it would not be possible to produce a representative snapshot. As I made clear in my previous answer, data for the Royal Navy could be provided only at disproportionate cost.