HC Deb 21 May 1912 vol 38 c1890W

asked the Postmaster-General if the bicycles obtained under the Irish contract have given satisfaction; how their cost compares with the highest accepted English tender, including cost of carriage to Ireland; whether, in view of the fact that the Irish machines have only been in use a short time, he will state how their extra cost, including maintenance parts, can be determined to be 25s. 3d.; whether the ultimate cost depends entirely on the behaviour of the cycles when in actual use; and whether, if the Irish machines wear better and require fewer maintenance parts, they may be actually cheaper to the Department than the English cycles, even if the initial cost be somewhat higher?


The bicycles have given satisfaction. Their prices, compared with the highest paid in England—including cost of carriage to Ireland—are about 3s. lower for the bicycle alone, and about 24s. higher for bicycle and maintenance parts. The cost of maintenance parts is based on the known rates of consumption in England during past years in conjunction with the prices for the same quoted by the Irish firms. It is the case that machines which wear better and require less maintenance may in the end prove cheapest, and I am not yet in a position to say whether or not the Irish machines will wear better.