§ MR. WEIR
I beg to ask the Postmaster General why no information can be obtained from the Department in reply to inquiries as to the cause of delay (2 hours 7 minutes) in the transmission of a telegram from Balallan, Plockton, Ross-shire, to London on the 2nd ultimo, and of a telegram from London to Balallan, Plockton, Ross-shire, delayed 1½ hours at Inverness on the 4th ultimo?
THE POSTMASTER GENERAL (Mr. A. MORLET, Nottingham, E.)
The first telegram mentioned in the question is probably one which was handed in on the 31st January, and not on the 2nd February, and was mentioned in the hon. Member's letter of the 2nd February, addressed to the Secretary of the Post Office. It contained 69 words and had to pass through six offices. Its transmission occupied one hour and seven minutes, not two hours and seven minutes as stated in the question, and I do not think that the time was unduly long. The second telegram was sent on the 4th ultimo. It was addressed "Balallan, Plockton, Stromeferry," and was written on the same form as one addressed "Balallan, Stromeferry." I ought to have pointed out that there is a telegraph office at Plockton, but unfortunately this was not done. When the telegram reached Inverness the mistake was noticed and delay occurred before the matter could be put right by reference to the hon. Member who had not paid the full amount for the two messages. No unnecessary delay has taken place in discovering the exact facts.