HC Deb 06 February 1908 vol 183 cc1088-9
MR. RAWLINSON (Cambridge University)

On behalf of the hon. Member for the Hoxton Division, I beg to ask the Postmaster-General whether he will consider the advisability of creating limited competitions for boy clerks in examinations for situations as sorter, telegraphist, and other Post Office appointments, in view of the fact that large numbers of boy clerks, now employed in the Post Office, have to be discharged at the age of twenty, although the training they have received in the methods of the Department would prove of incalculable value.


I am in sympathy with the desire of the hon. Member to create opportunities for boy clerks to secure established appointments; and I have already arranged that every boy clerk employed in the Post Office whose service is satisfactory, shall have the opportunity of competing for a permanent situation. The posts of registry assistant in London are reserved exclusively for boy clerks; a fixed proportion of certain clerical posts in the Engineering Department is also reserved for them; and those who are not admitted to competitions for these clerical posts are allowed to take part in the limited competitions for the situations of learner and sorting clerk and telegraphist in the provinces. To extend further the opportunities to boy clerks for entering limited competitions for non-clerical posts would seriously interfere with the prospects of the telegraph messengers, and to this I regret that I cannot consent.