Recruitment Shortcomings

By kind permission of John King, Author

The principal shortcoming of the recruiting system for the ASC was that a number of unskilled men were being sent to Grove Park since the recruiting offices were not qualified to check them. Indeed, large numbers of men were found to be unable to drive or had little knowledge of the trades in which they had enlisted. This did not go unnoticed elsewhere and a correspondent in The Observer on 7 March mistakenly expressed criticism of the quality of driver training in the ASC. The Observer article was quoted in the Lee Journal on 12 March and, as if to prove the point, the same issue carried a story about a vehicle driven by Staff Sgt H B Boon colliding with a Tilling bus at Lee Green. The buses had an open top deck and the newspaper reported that the stairway of the bus was broken away from the body of the vehicle, an action which caused some alarm to the passengers upstairs! It was perhaps surprising that there were not more accidents involving ASC vehicles, although most were probably not reported. But the Lee Journal did report the collision two months later of two ASC cars in Coopers Lane, one driver being seriously injured.

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