§ MR. J. G. WEIR (Ross and Cromarty)
I beg to ask the Secretary to the Treasury, as representing the Postmaster General, if he will take steps to continue the sailing of the mail steamer from Stornoway to Strome Ferry at 11 p.m. instead of at 1 a.m.: and, is he aware that the steamer leaving Storno-way at 11 p.m. arrives at Strome Ferry in time for the first train south, namely, 6 a.m., while on the other hand the delay resulting from the 1 a.m. sailings causes great inconvenience and loss to the population (30,000) of the Island of Lewis, and is seriously detrimental to the business of the merchants of Stornoway and to the fishing industry generally?
§ THE SECRETARY TO THsE TREASURY (Mr. R. W. HANBURY,) Preston
During May and June the mail steamer is timed to leave Stornoway for Strome Ferry at 11 p.m., for the rest of the year it leaves at 1 a.m. As the vessel is not due at Stornoway for Strome Ferry until about 9 p.m. and is occasionally later, a departure at 11 p.m. leaves but a very short interval at Stornoway between the arrival and 568 the departure of the vessel for the transfer of cargo from and to the ship and for coaling purposes, and the contractor is not willing that the period during which the departure takes place at 11 p.m. should be extended. The Postmaster General is aware that the 11 p.m. departure secures, as a rule, a connection with the 6 a.m. train from Strome Ferry to the south, but a continuance of this arrangement throughout the year is not at present practicable.