§ SIR LEES KNOWLES (Salford, W.)
To ask the Secretary of State for War if, in consideration of the fact that the 1st battalion Lancashire Fusiliers after being stationed at Malta and Gibraltar, is now under orders to return to Malta, he will state whether there is any special reason why it should be continually stationed in the Mediterranean, where it has been since August 1899; and whether he can so vary the published programme of moves as to prevent this battalion from a prolonged sojourn abroad.
(Answered by Mr. Secretary Arnold-Forster.) The 1st battalion Lancashire Fusiliers went abroad in 1899, and it has been found necessary to retain it in the Mediterranean up to the present; but every endeavour will be made, as regards this battalion, as is done in the case of others, to give it its fair proportion of Indian as well as of Colonial service. The South African War has necessarily caused a certain dislocation in the ordinary relief arrangements. There is no intention of keeping this battalion abroad for more than its normal period of foreign service.