HC Deb 22 April 1913 vol 52 cc234-5

asked whether a fee of 1,000 guineas was paid to Mr. Andrew Young, the valuer to the London County Council, for services rendered during the recent arbitration between the Postmaster-General and the National Telephone Company; what was the nature of the services and the time occupied in rendering them; and if, during the last-named period, any substitute was acting for Mr. Young in connection with his duties to the London County Council?

The POSTMASTER-GENERAL (Mr. Herbert Samuel)

Under the purchase agreement approved by Parliament, the National Telephone Company's plant, property, and assets were purchased by the Post Office on what were practically "tramway terms," but the extent of the system and the amount involved were beyond all precedents. Mr. Andrew Young, the valuer to the London County Council, had had a unique experience in the valuation of plant under the Tramway Acts; and, at the request of the Postmaster-General, the London County Council granted Mr. Young permission to advise the Post Office with regard to the valuation of the telephone system. Mr. Young's assistance was given over a period of nearly two years, and he devoted much of his leisure time to study of the numerous problems involved. He also gave valuable evidence before the Railway and Canal Commission. The honorarium to Mr. Young was on a moderate scale in comparison with the fees usually paid for expert assistance and advice in complicated technical cases. I understand that Mr. Young attended to his duties to the London County Council throughout the time when he was assisting the Post Office.