HC Deb 15 July 1936 vol 314 c2049
77. Sir R. ROSS

asked the Postmaster-General what profit, if any, was made on the operation of telephone services for a year up to the latest convenient date?


The telephone surplus for the year ended March, 1935, was £1,685,000. The final figures are not yet available for the year ended last March.

78. Sir R. ROSS

asked the Postmaster-General what would be the estimated additional annual cost to the Post Office in granting the same telephone rates to and from Northern Ireland as are enjoyed by the rest of the United Kingdom?


The present traffic to and from Northern Ireland is increasing rapidly, and nine additional circuits are being provided to carry it. The abolition of the cable charges would necessitate still further circuits, and their provision is being studied; but as new technical methods are involved it is not possible at present to estimate the cost. When the investigations are completed and the approximate cost of the necessary circuits is known, the question of abolishing the cable charges will be further considered.


Can my hon. Friend tell me how soon it would be useful to put down another question? Is he aware that great distress is being felt in Northern Ireland at being excluded from the principle of uniformity of charge which is extended to everywhere else in the United Kingdom?


I can assure my hon. Friend that the Postmaster-General and I are giving very grave consideration to this matter, for we are very desirous that Northern Ireland should have the same privileges as the rest of the United Kingdom, but I would not suggest that my hon. Friend should put down a question this side of the holidays.