71. Captain TERRELL
asked the Postmaster-General whether he is aware that residents in the villages are complaining of the lack of telephonic facilities; whether to meet this great and growing need he will consider the installation of a public telephone at every village post office; and whether, by thus extending its operations on reasonable terms, the Post Office could obtain a very large amount 594 of extra telephone business of a remunerative nature which would help to meet the loss on the existing system?
§ The ASSISTANT POSTMASTER - GENERAL (Mr. H. Pike Pease)
My right hon. Friend is investigating the scope for further telephone development in villages. But the revenue collected at the rural call offices which have been opened in recent years is relatively small, and, in view of the considerable expense involved in providing and maintaining them, I am afraid that a guarantee would usually have to be required.
Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that agriculture, which is one of the largest industries in the country, is seriously hampered by not having telephones in all villages, and will the Postmaster-General consider the question from that point of view?