§ MR. CATHCART WASON (Orkney and Shetland)
I beg to ask the Postmaster-General if he is aware that the train conveying mails to the counties of Caithness and Orkney is almost invariably late in the tourist and shooting season, and that, in consequence, the mail steamer often is compelled to undertake the passage in the dark; if the railway company is under contract with the Government; and, if so, what is the stipulated time for mail trains to arrive at Thurso and Wick.
§ Captain NORTON(for Mr. Sydney Buxton) Newington, W.;
It is a fact that the mail train to the North of Scotland is frequently late during the tourist season; and in reply to remonstrances on the subject, the railway company have represented the difficulty of maintaining punctuality on a railway with a single line of rails at a time when the passenger traffic is greatly in excess of the normal amount. The train, which is run under contract, should arrive at Thurso at 3.35 p.m., and at Wick at 3.50 p.m. The mail steamer to Orkney has, even when the train is punctual, to make the passage after dark during the greater part of the year.