HC Deb 24 May 1900 vol 83 c1113

I beg to ask the Secretary to the Treasury, as representing the Postmaster General, whether a telegraphist at Brighton has been told that he cannot pass the efficiency bar as a telegraphist because of his ignorance of telephone duties, although up to the date of his stoppage the Department gave him no opportunity of learning telephone duties; and whether, in view of the fact that the clerk is an expert telegraphist, having been sent for service on special events and placed on other duties of an important operating nature, it is intended to retard his career as a telegraphist because of ignorance of matters in which he has never been asked or expected to qualify.


The officer in question was not certified by his postmaster to be able to perform the highest duties of his class in an efficient manner, and could not therefore pass the efficiency bar. His inability to perform telephone work was not the only matter in which he was inefficient. The officer had the same opportunities of learning telephone work as others who have made themselves acquainted with it, but he did not take advantage of them. As I explained on the 17th instant,* it is not intended to make any alteration in the conditions of efficiency which vary at different offices; and at an office such as Brighton where telephone work is required, the ability to perform it must form part of the necessary qualification.