HC Deb 27 March 1939 vol 345 cc1705-6
43. Mr. Sorensen

asked the Postmaster- General whether he can give details of tenders submitted for the new sound equipment at the Blackheath studios; what system is going to be installed; whether the tender was the lowest submitted; and whether the equipment is of British manufacture?

Major Tryon

I cannot give details of the tenders, since it is a principle long accepted by this House that such tenders are to be treated as confidential. The tenders were not for the supply of equipment to a Post Office specification. Each of the firms tendering submitted a proposal for the equipment of the studio according to the firm's system; and the tenders varied not only in the lump sum payment required in lieu of rental, but in the type and quantity of equipment, the period of lease, and the rates and conditions of royalty charges. Thus, no direct monetary comparison is possible. The equipment selected was that which was recommended by experts inside and outside the Government service as the best suited to the needs of the Department. The system which is being installed is that of R.C.A. Photophone, Limited, which is largely used by leading studios in this country; 67 per cent. of the equipment is of British manufacture.