HC Deb 09 June 1896 vol 41 cc710-1

I beg to ask the Secretary to the Treasury, as representing the Postmaster General, (1) whether four telegraphists in Aberdeen were recently instructed to hold themselves in readiness to proceed to Stornoway, but the order was subsequently countermanded, four telegraphists from Liverpool being sent instead, at an allowance of 2s. each less per day than has been regularly paid to Scottish telegraphists; (2) whether, taking the travelling expenses into account, anything will be saved to the Department by sending telegraphists from Liverpool to Stornoway; (3) whether telegraphists sent from Liverpool to Llandudno and the Isle of Man for relief purposes have hitherto had allowances of 5s. per day; and, (4) whether, if English telegraphists are offered relief appointments in the North of Scotland for the benefit of their health, similar appointments will be offered in the South of England for the same reason to Scottish telegraphists?


The case is as stated in the first part of the hon. Member's Question. It was found that the four telegraphists could not be spared from Aberdeen unless they were replaced by an equal number from Edinburgh or from some other Scotch office, which was not practicable. There was a material saving of expense by the arrangement which was adopted. Telegraphists sent from Liverpool to Llandudno and the Isle of Man during the season received 5s. a day, a smaller allowance for subsistence not being sufficient to meet expenses. The hon. Member appears to be under a misapprehension in thinking that these relief telegraphists were sent to Stornoway for the benefit of their health. They were sent for the purpose of meeting the heavy requirements of the fishing season; and, if telegraphists were sent for the purpose from Aberdeen they would in future be paid a 3s. and not a 5s. subsistence allowance.