HC Deb 05 March 1840 vol 52 cc900-1
Mr. Fitzroy

wished to put a question to the right hon. Gentleman, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, on the subject of the new postage regulations. He found that if a letter were sent to Dover, it was charged a penny; but if the letter were sent to Paris, the postage as far as Dover was charged as formerly, 10d. He wanted to know the reason for this distinction. Again, he found it was allowed, if he posted the votes of the House, and put his name on the cover, that they went free; but if he absented himself from London, he could not receive them postage free. Now he wished to ask whether Members would be allowed to receive the votes alone free from postage?

The Chancellor of the Exchequer

said, that the hon. Gentleman was quite correct in stating that the home postage to Dover was a penny, but the postage on a foreign letter was fixed under a treaty, and by that treaty the postage to Dover was 10d. The subject of the foreign postages had not escaped the attention of the Government, and more especially with regard to France, with whom we were now in negotiation, the object being to obtain from foreign governments a reduction in their rate of postage.

Mr. H. Fitzroy

begged the right hon. Gentleman's pardon, but he had misapprehended the purport of his first question. His question did not relate to the rate of postage on the other side of the water, but to the charge to and from Dover in this country, and he saw no reason why the same rate should not be paid in all cases.

The Chancellor of the Exchequer

re- plied, that this was just what he did not want to do. His object was to have something to give the French government in return; and both governments were now in a friendly way settling what reductions should be made. With regard to what the hon. Gentleman had stated respecting the transmission of the votes, he should be very glad if he could find any one who would enter into an inquiry upon the subject with him, to whom he could explain the reasons for the regulations which had been adopted; but he was sure that when the privilege of franking was given up, it was never intended that it should be renewed for the benefit of that House alone.

Subject dropped.

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