HC Deb 10 July 1933 vol 280 cc742-3

asked the Postmaster-General whether now that there are so many more subscribers to the telephone, he can hold out any hope of telephone charges being considerably reduced?

The POSTMASTER-GENERAL (Sir Kingsley Wood)

The surplus on the telephone account is small in relation to the turnover, forming little more than a safe working margin, and I regret that it does not permit of a reduction of telephone charges at the present time.


Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that under the present dialling system we subscribers do most of the work, and that that is a very good reason for reducing the telephone charges?


I am not unmindful of that, but the telephone operators also have their own opinion on the matter.


If my right hon. Friend is desirous of increasing the revenue of the telephone service will he ask every Government Department to print its telephone number on its notepaper?

20. Lieut.-Commander AGNEW

(for Mr. HALL-CAINE) asked the Postmaster-General if he will consider the experiment of supplying village policemen with telephones at nominal rates so as to induce local residents anxious for police protection to adopt telephone installations for themselves, and thus recoup the Department for any unremunerative initial outlay?


I fear I cannot share my hon. Friend's view that if such police telephones were provided at a nominal rent, the loss involved would be made good by an increase in the number of residents who would be induced to become subscribers. Moreover, if a concession were made in the cases referred to, it would be difficult and unjust to refuse claims for similar concessions from other institutions of a public character.

Lieut.-Commander AGNEW

Can my right hon. Friend say whether it is a fact that there are some police stations in the country which have not yet got a telephone, and, if so, will he bring it to the notice of the local authorities concerned?


I understand that my right hon. Friend the Home Secretary answered a question on that matter last week in the House.