I beg to ask the Secretary to the Treasury, as representing the Postmaster-General, whether he can state how much money has been spent upon laying cables between England and Ireland, and what has been the financial result to the Government; whether complaints have been received regarding insufficient means of telegraphic communication; and whether he will increase the number of wires to meet public convenience.
§ THE FINANCIAL SECRETARY TO THE TREASURY (Mr. HANBURY,) Preston
I cannot state how much money has been spent upon laying cables between England and Ireland, or what has been the financial result. Some of the cables were laid by the old telegraph companies, and the price paid for them by the State cannot be distinguised in the purchase-money of the undertakings of the companies. There has been little complaint recently regarding insufficient means of communication, as an additional cable containing four wires has been laid and brought into use this year. So far as the requirements of the public are concerned, there appears to be no necessity to further increase the number of wires.