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Division No. 3


Ackner, L.
Acton, L.
Addington, L.
Airedale, L.
Alanbrooke, V.
Aldenham, L.
Allenby of Megiddo, V.
Annaly, L.
Archer of Sandwell, L.
Ashbourne, L.
Attenborough, L.
Avebury, L.
Bancroft, L.
Barnett, L.
Beaumont of Whitley, L.
Belhaven and Stenton, L.
Birkett, L.
Blackstone, B.
Blake, L.
Bledisloe, V.
Borthwick, L.
Boyd-Carpenter, L.
Braine of Wheatley, L.
Brightman, L.
Broadbridge, L.
Brookes, L.
Bruce of Donington, L.
Butterfield, L.
Carmichael of Kelvingrove, L.
Carter, L.
Chalfont, L.
Chapple, L.
Charteris of Amisfield, L.
Chorley, L.
Cledwyn of Penrhos, L.
Coleridge, L.
Combermere, V.
Congleton, L.
Cornwallis, L.
Cox, B.
Craigavon, V.
Croham, L.
Cross, V.
Darcy (de Knayth), B.
David, B.
Davies, L.
Dean of Beswick, L.
Derwent, L.
Desai, L.
Diamond, L.
Donaldson of Kingsbridge, L.
Donoughue, L.
Dormand of Easington, L.
Dubs, L.
Dundonald, E.
Dunrossil, V.
Elis-Thomas, L.
Ennals, L.
Erroll, E.
Ezra, L.
Falkland, V.
Farrington of Ribbleton, B.
Fisher of Rednal, B.
Foot, L.
Freyberg, L. [Teller.]
Gage, V.
Geraint, L.
Gladwin of Clee, L.
Glenarthur, L.
Gould of Potternewton, B.
Graham of Edmonton, L.
Greenway, L.
Grey, E.
Halsbury, E.
Hamwee, B.
Harris of Greenwich, L.
Harrowby, E.
Haskel, L.
Hayter, L.
Healey, L.
Henderson of Brompton, L.
Henniker, L.
Hollick, L.
Hollis of Heigham, B.
Holme of Cheltenham, L.
Hooson, L.
Howie of Troon, L.
Hughes, L.
Hylton-Foster, B.
Iddesleigh, E.
Irvine of Lairg, L.
Jeger, B.
Judd, L.
Killearn, L.
Kinloss, Ly.
Kinnoull, E.
Kirkhill, L.
Kitchener, E.
Lawrence, L.
Layton, L.
Macaulay of Bragar, L.
Mackie of Benshie, L.
MacLehose of Beoch, L.
Mallalieu, B.
Mar and Kellie, E.
Mason of Barnsley, L.
Mayhew, L.
McAlpine of West Green, L.
McCarthy, L.
McConnell, L.
McGregor of Durris, L.
McIntosh of Haringey, L.
McNair, L.
Merlyn-Rees, L.
Meston, L.
Milne, L.
Milner of Leeds, L.
Monson, L.
Moore of Wolvercote, L.
Moran, L.
Morris of Castle Morris, L.
Morris of Kenwood, L.
Nelson, E.
Nicol, B.
Norrie, L.
Ogmore, L.
Park of Monmouth, B.
Pearson of Rannoch, L.
Perth, E.
Peston, L.
Peyton of Yeovil, L.
Phillips of Ellesmere, L.
Plant of Highfield, L.
Portland, E.
Prys-Davies, L.
Raglan, L.
Ranfurly, E.
Rea, L.
Redesdale, L.
Rennell, L.
Richard, L.
Ripon, Bp.
Ritchie of Dundee, L.
Robson of Kiddington, B.
Rochester, L.
Rodgers of Quarry Bank, L.
Roskill, L.
Runciman of Doxford, V.
Russell, E.
Salisbury, M.
Saltoun of Abernethy, Ly.
Savile, L.
Seear, B. [Teller.]
Serota, B.
Shannon, E.
Sharples, B.
Shaughnessy, L.
Simon of Glaisdale, L.
Simon, V.
Skidelsky, L.
Slim, V.
Smith, L.
Stallard, L.
Stedman, B.
Stoddart of Swindon, L.
Strabolgi, L.
Strafford, E.
Strange, B.
Strathcona and Mount Royal, L.
Swinfen, L.
Temple of Stowe, E.
Tenby, V.
Thomas of Walliswood, B.
Thomson of Monifieth, L.
Thurlow, L.
Tope, L.
Tordoff, L.
Turner of Camden, B.
Waverley, V.
Wedderburn of Charlton, L.
Westmorland, E.
Whaddon, L.
Wharton, B.
White, B.
Wilberforce, L.
Williams of Crosby, B.
Williams of Elvel, L.
Williams of Mostyn, L.
Willoughby de Broke, L.
Winchilsea and Nottingham, E.
Wolfson, L.


Aberdare, L.
Addison, V.
Ailsa, M.
Aldington, L.
Alexander of Tunis, E.
Astor of Hever, L.
Astor, V.
Barber of Tewkesbury, L.
Barber, L.
Belstead, L.
Bethell, L.
Biddulph, L.
Birdwood, L.
Blaker, L.
Blatch, B.
Blyth, L.
Brabazon of Tara, L.
Brougham and Vaux, L.
Bruntisfield, L.
Buchan, E.
Buckinghamshire, E.
Butterworth, L.
Cadman, L.
Caithness, E.
Campbell of Croy, L.
Carlisle of Bucklow, L.
Carnegy of Lour, B.
Carnock, L.
Carr of Hadley, L.
Chalker of Wallasey, B.
Chelmsford, V.
Chesham, L.
Chilver, L.
Clanwilliam, E.
Clark of Kempston, L.
Coleraine, L.
Colwyn, L.
Cork and Orrery, E.
Courtown, E.
Cranborne, V. [Lord Privy Seal.]
Cumberlege, B.
Davidson, V.
Dean of Harptree, L.
Dilhorne, V.
Dixon-Smith, L.
Dudley, E.
Dundee, E.
Eccles of Moulton, B.
Eden of Winton, L.
Elliott of Morpeth, L.
Fairfax of Cameron, L.
Falmouth, V.
Ferrers, E.
Fraser of Carmyllie, L.
Gisborough, L.
Goschen, V.
Gowrie, E.
Gray of Contin, L.
Hacking, L.
Haddington, E.
Hailsham of Saint Marylebone, L.
Hambro, L.
Harding of Petherton, L.
Hardinge of Penshurst, L.
Harmar-Nicholls, L.
Harmsworth, L.
Hayhoe, L.
Henley, L.
Hives, L.
Hogg, B.
Holderness, L.
HolmPatrick, L.
Hood, V.
Hooper, B.
Hothfield, L.
Howe of Aberavon, L.
Howe, E.
Inglewood, L. [Teller.]
Jenkin of Roding, L.
Johnston of Rockport, L.
Kimball, L.
Kingsland, L.
Laing of Dunphail, L.
Lane of Horsell, L.
Lauderdale, E.
Leigh, L.
Lindsay, E.
Lindsey and Abingdon, E.
Long, V.
Lucas of Chilworth, L.
Lucas, L.
Lyell, L.
Mackay of Ardbrecknish, L.
Mackay of Clashfern, L. [Lord Chancellor.]
Macleod of Borve, B.
Marlesford, L.
McColl of Dulwich, L.
Mersey, V.
Miller of Hendon, B.
Mills, V.
Milverton, L.
Monteagle of Brandon, L.
Morris, L.
Mottistone, L.
Mowbray and Stourton, L.
Moyne, L.
Murton of Lindisfarne, L.
Noel-Buxton, L.
Northbrook, L.
Northesk, E.
Onslow, E.
Oppenheim-Barnes, B.
Orkney, E.
Oxfuird, V.
Parkinson, L.
Plummer of St. Marylebone, L.
Prentice, L.
Pym, L.
Rankeillour, L.
Rawlings, B.
Reay, L.
Rees, L.
Renton, L.
Renwick, L.
Rodger of Earlsferry, L.
Rodney, L.
Seccombe, B.
Selborne, E.
Shaw of Northstead, L.
Skelmersdale, L.
Stevens of Ludgate, L.
Stewartby, L.
Stodart of Leaston, L.
Strathclyde, L. [Teller.]
Sudeley, L.
Teviot, L.
Thomas of Gwydir, L.
Trefgarne, L.
Trumpington, B.
Ullswater, V.
Wakeham, L.
Whitelaw, V.
Wise, L.
Wynford, L.
Young, B.

Resolved in the affirmative, and amendment agreed to accordingly.

14 Mar 1995 : Column 786

7.2 p.m.

Lord Freyberg moved Amendment No. 186:

Before Clause 114, insert the following new clause:

("Service Widows' pensions: post-retirement marriage

. No widow of a member of Her Majesty's forces shall be disqualified from receiving a full pension in relation to the deceased's membership of Her Majesty's forces by virtue of the fact that her marriage occurred after the deceased member had retired from Her Majesty's forces provided that the marriage took place before his 65th birthday—the end of his recall liability—and has lasted for at least three years.").

The noble Lord said: My Lords, this amendment is different from the previous one. We are now talking about service widows of post-retirement marriages. Widows of servicemen who retired before 1978 unjustly receive none of their husband's pension. Thus, many widows over 70 whose husbands fought in the Second World War and who were lucky enough to survive to contribute towards their widow's pension, both financially and by their service, are left pensionless.

The new clause proposes provision for those widows related to the serviceman's years of service provided the marriage occurred before he reached 65—the age of recall liability —and had lasted at least three years.

Post-retirement marriages are a particular problem in the Armed Forces because retirement is commonly so much earlier than in other professions. Typically, officers retire between the ages of 45 and 55 and other ranks as early as 35 to 40. Naturally, many of those men of such ages wish to marry, and do so; but until 1978 no pensions provision was made for their post-retirement widows. That has created an extremely serious position, penalising men who had paid into a pension scheme all their working lives—11 per cent. of their pay until 1986—leaving them unable to provide for their widows when they die. That iniquity causes misery not just for the widow who is to be left without a pension, but horrible mental anguish for her husband while is is alive, as he knows that he will be unable to provide her with the financial security to which she should be entitled.

The Minister has said that second husbands should make provision for their wives. In many cases, in a post-retirement marriage they are prevented from doing just that, as letters that I have received describe. It is not just widows of pre-1978 servicemen who are affected by the ruling. Because of the length of time it will take for the new system to operate fully, whereby each year

14 Mar 1995 : Column 787

of service post-1978 counts for 1/34 of a widow's pension, only servicemen who retire in 2012 will be able to give their post-retirement widows the full half-rate pension. If one was to retire today in 1995, one would be able to pass on only a quarter-rate pension.

I am ashamed to say that other countries are more generous in that respect. Pension provision for the widow of a post-retirement marriage is a characteristic of all but one of 14 comparable European allied armed forces pension schemes.

The amendment proposes that pensions be extended only to widows of retired servicemen who marry or remarry before the age of 65—the end of recall liability and the common retirement age for the civilian population. Provided that the marriage lasted for at least three years, the pension should relate to the spouse's number of years in the forces.

The Minister will no doubt mention that premature compulsory or voluntary retirement is a characteristic of other public service professions. But it applies only to the police force, and to nothing like the same degree. If the Minister argues that any concession must be read across to the remainder of the public sector, I would remind him that in the period about which we are talking—pre-1978—the standard retirement age for civil servants was 65. The amendment would put servicemen on a par with civil servants at that period. I beg to move.

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