HC Deb 24 March 1896 vol 39 cc57-8

I beg to ask the Secretary to the Treasury, as representing the Postmaster General, what is the standard of education and limit of age required for appointments as sub-postmaster in Ireland; was a coastguard pensioner, named P. Scully, aged 60 years, who was recently appointed sub-postmaster at Baltimore, examined on behalf of the Postmaster General to test his fitness by education for the position, and did he produce a certificate of age; and, whether he is aware that a number of people of education, having considerable property in Baltimore, were candidates for the office, and will he state what were the special circumstances which caused the appointment to be given to Mr. Scully in preference to one of those; and, whether, considering the importance of the office, he will inquire into all the circumstances of the appointment?


For the appointment of sub-postmaster no particular standard of education or limit of age is prescribed; and, accordingly, Mr. Patrick Scully, who has been appointed sub-postmaster of Baltimore, was not required to produce a certificate of age or to undergo any educational test. He was, however, strongly recommended to the Postmaster General as in all respects fit for the appointment, and it was ascertained that he could read and write well, and that he is about 57 years of age. It is the case that he is a coastguard pensioner. Of the other four candidates who applied, three were considered ineligible—two because they kept public-houses, and the third because the situation of the house was inconvenient. As between the fourth and Mr. Scully, the balance of advantage, was all on the side of Mr. Scully. The Postmaster General sees no reason for making any further inquiry than has been made already.