HC Deb 18 April 1907 vol 172 cc1120-1

To ask the Postmaster-General whether, having regard to the inconvenience and annoyance caused by private telegrams having been opened by persons other than the addressees owing to the illegibility of the lead pencil directions on paper of the colour now used, he can see his way either to abolish the use of the present coloured envelope in all cases, or, as an alternative, to direct that telegrams bearing the words private, confidential, or similar indications, shall be delivered in envelopes on which lead pencil writing is more distinctly legible.

(Answered by Mr. Sydney Buxton.) I cannot do better than repeat to the hon. Member the substance of a reply which I gave to the chamber of commerce of his constituency on this point a month ago. I said that exception was very rarely taken to the colour of the present telegram envelopes; any change in its colour would probably give rise to much complaint; that Postmasters - General had from time to time been urged to use distinctive envelopes for various classes of telegrams, but that the multiplication of forms of official stationary used at postal telegraph offices was moat undesirable, and would undoubtedly tend to certain delay and possible mistakes in the treatment of telegrams.