HC Deb 22 July 1959 vol 609 cc1247-8
5. Mr. Cronin

asked the Postmaster-General if he will indicate the size of the present waiting list for telephones; and, approximately, what proportion of this present waiting list will be supplied with telephones after a further two years from now.

Mr. K. Thompson

Altogether, 58,100 applications are on the waiting list at present and another 82,600 are under inquiry or in course of being met.

The composition of the waiting list is changing all the time. We now hope to provide about 390,000 new telephones this year, and again next year, and these will include, as new plant becomes available, most of the applications at present on the waiting list, as well as new applications. I am sorry I cannot be more specific in reply to the second part of the hon. Member's Question.

Mr. Cronin

Will the hon. Member do what he can to extend the supply of these telephones, as many people on the waiting list are suffering considerable hardship?

Mr. Thompson

As my reply indicated, we are doing a great deal. I should like to stress that in the second quarter of this year, ending 30th June, we supplied nearly 101,000 telephones. This rate has been exceeded only once in the last decade.