§ Mr. Stokes
asked the Secretary of State for War why a soldier whose period of overseas service already qualifies him for repatriation under Python, on returning to England for release forfeits the 28 days' leave with pay and allowances to which his period of overseas service entitles him, whereas a man whose release date falls a month or more after the date of his return under Python receives the 28 days' repatriation leave in addition to his release leave, and if he will reconsider this anomaly.
§ Major Legge-Bourke
asked the Secretary of State for War whether he will con- 952W sider granting 28 days' leave to those officers and men who, because they become due for release before they would be repatriated under the Python scheme, are denied this privilege.
asked the Secretary of State for War whether arrangements are being made to ensure that personnel due for release but also entitled to privilege leave in respect of service overseas are granted such leave before release.
§ Mr. Lawson
My hon. Friends are apparently referring to disembarkation leave, granted to men who are posted to the Home establishment from overseas, including those returning to the Home establishment under Python. The object of such leave, the amount of which varies with the period of overseas service, is to enable the soldier to resume home contacts and to take a holiday before returning to duty for further service. When a soldier returns to this country for immediate release, his release leave begins at once and the justification for additional disembarkation leave disappears. His basic release leave of 56 days is increased by one day for each month of overseas service. I realise that in some instances where release from the Army follows soon after return from overseas, the soldier may get the benefit of both regulations, if he is to be allowed leave at the time of disembarkation, but I do not think this provides any case for altering the general rules.