HC Deb 26 February 1964 vol 690 cc403-4
1. Sir B. Janner

asked the Postmaster-General why there is a shortage of plant, which is causing delay in the installation of telephones, in Leicester and elsewhere; and what steps he is taking to remedy the position.

The Postmaster-General (Mr. Reginald Bevins)

The plant shortages that exist in some areas are due to insufficient capital investment in the past. One of the aims of the big expansion programme outlined in the recent White Paper is to end these shortages, and to abolish the waiting list within two years from now.

Sir B. Janner

Is not that a very belated idea? Why on earth has not the Postmaster-General realised before now that there should not be a shortage of plant required for telephones? How soon does he think people in Leicester and elsewhere will have their requirements fulfilled? Can he give any idea how many of the 58 telephones which had not been installed although applied for in Leicester in December have now been installed?

Mr. Bevins

The exchange in Leicester is quite adequate and we have eight major cable schemes due for completion at the end of the next financial year. The situation during the last 12 months in Leicester has improved very considerably and the waiting list is about half what it was 12 months ago. All the waiters will be provided with a service, most of them within three months and some in six months.