HC Deb 02 June 1964 vol 695 cc899-900
16. Shinwell

asked the Postmaster-General if he will state the result of his inquiries into the organisation of postal arrangements in the area covered by the Crown post office in Peterlee.

Mr. Bevins

I arranged for incoming mail to continue under periodic observation and as a result special instructions have been issued to those post offices where correspondence for the Peterlee area may have been delayed. I should be greatly helped in improving the service by a reduction in the amount of incorrectly addressed mail for the area. One of the main faults has been the omission of the post town of Peterlee. I am considering whether any further publicity measures in the Peterlee area would assist, and meanwhile I should be very grateful to the right hon. Gentleman if he would discuss this with me personally.

Mr. Shinwell

What is the point? I recognise the courtesy of the right hon. Gentleman in inviting me to have a discussion with him, but is he aware that I raised this matter more than two months ago? I then asked why this Crown post office was sited without any plan about the method of delivery and the nomenclature for the area. Surely this is a matter which could be settled in five minutes. If the right hon. Gentleman cannot do it himself, can I go to Peterlee and discuss it with the postmaster? Does not the right hon. Gentleman agree that the failure to solve a simple matter of this kind is an example of the inadequacy of the Post Office?

Mr. Bevins

I realise that there seems to be an aversion in the North-East to using the word "Peterlee" as a postal town. Since February of this year we have examined about 1,400 letters intended for Peterlee, and have found that about 40 per cent. were wrongly addressed, and that consequently quite a number were held up in the post. I agree that there was no trouble before the new office was opened in Peterlee. Clearly there are local associations here which the right hon. Gentleman could help me about. That is why I should like to discuss the matter with him.