§ MR. MACARTNEY
said, he wished to ask the late Secretary to the Treasury the cause for altering the Port of arrival and departure for the Cape of Good Hope Mails in England to Devonport in place of Southampton, as set out in the Copy of the accepted Tender of the Union Steam Shipping Company, bearing date the 27th day of August, 1857, laid on the table of this House (No. 119), whether at the desire of the Postmaster General, the Board of Admiralty, or the inhabitants of Devon-port; and also, why the additional sum inserted in the contract should be £3,000, in place of £1,200, as named in the 8th column of the Tender, for such change of the port of departure.
said, he could inform the hon. Gentleman that no alterations had been made in the contract since the acceptance of the tender. The tenders were received from various persons—some from Southampton, some from other place. They were 430 accepted on the condition that the ships should go from Plymouth Sound, that being the first port which was reached by railway. Those conditions being accepted, no additional charge was made by the contractors. The £3,000 referred to had been given for the performance of additional services not included in the contract. With respect to the insinuation in the question, he could inform the House that no person from Devonport, dither directly or indirectly, had attempted to influence the Government in this matter.