MR. JOHN ELLIS (Notts, Rushcliffe)
I beg to ask the Postmaster General what number of messages were sent by the Telegraphic Department during 1889 on account of the railway companies, free of charge to them; and, having regard to the evidence of the Superintendent of Telegraphs before the Revenue Estimates Committee, in 1888, that this transmission of free messages had increased from 97,000 in 1871 to 961,000 in 1887, entirely at the public expense, whether he has been able in any way to check or diminish this growing charge on the National Exchequer?
*THE POSTMASTER GENERAL (Mr. RAISES,) Cambridge University
The number of telegrams transmitted free of charge for the railway companies in the year 1889 was 1,244,000. The subject of the hon. Member's question is engaging my careful attention, and the legal proceedings to which I referred in answer to a question on the 31st March last are still pending.