§ 11. Sir D. Robertson
asked the Secretary of State for War why the Black Watch bands which will play in a number of Canadian and United States cities in the autumn were permitted to sign a contract with the Hurok organisation which prevents them giving a concert for the Caledonian Hospital in New York or for any other charity during the tour.
§ Mr. John Hare
A clause in the contract forbids the acceptance of engagements which are not arranged by the tour manager. I understand that this provision is a normal feature of a contract of this type. The commanding officer of the band is willing to give a charity concert for the Caledonian Hospital if suitable arrangements can be made between the tour manager and the hospital board.
§ Sir D. Robertson
That does not arise from my Question. What arises is the nature of this contract, which prevents the descendants of a very distinguished regiment from giving a charity concert. This regiment played a great part in building up North America. At Ticonderoga, in New York State, many of the men gave their lives in defence of the Colony. Will not my right hon. Friend take steps to cancel this contract? It must be most harmful to British soldiers to be at the beck and call of a showman who will not yield after two or three months of effort to arrange for these men to give a concert for the hospital.
§ Mr. Woodburn
When the right hon. Gentleman is breaking up the old regiments of the British Army, will he keep 1118 in mind the importance of preserving this very useful peace-time function of famous Scottish regiments?