HC Deb 04 May 1955 vol 540 cc1678-9
32. Wing Commander Bullus

asked the Postmaster-General how many new subscribers have been given the telephone service from October, 1951, until the latest available date.

Dr. Hill

One million three hundred thousand subscribers' lines have been connected since October, 1951.

Wing Commander Bullus

I thank my right hon. Friend for that answer. Can he state the comparative figure for the previous three years?

Dr. Hill

The figure is 891,238.

Mr. Bing

Can the right hon. Gentleman say how many of those new lines have been provided by taking away from subscribers the exclusive use of lines and making them share those lines with other subscribers, and how many have been provided as a result of fitting new cables?

Dr. Hill

I cannot give a precise answer to that question without notice, but it is true that approximately 450,000 subscribers have been enabled to become subscribers because of line-sharing.

Mr. Hale

Can the Minister say why it is now suggested that people are being given a telephone service? Is it not a fact that all these people except Government Departments have been grossly overcharged for it, and are being grossly overcharged for it, because of the increases instituted by the Government?

Dr. Hill

I am responsible only for the answer, and not the Question.