HC Deb 17 April 1913 vol 51 cc2150-2W

asked the Postmaster-General whether he has been able to give further consideration to the case of the electrical staff transferred from the National Telephone Company?


I find that, owing to the arrested development of the telephone system during the latter part of the company's existence, the average length of service of the electrical staff was very high. Under the arrangements sanctioned by the Treasury, it was only possible to place a certain proportion of this staff on the establishment, and a number of men with somewhat long service upon skilled electrical duties had consequently to be assigned to an unestablished class, and complaints were made to me on their behalf. I am glad to say that I have now secured the assent of the Treasury to the creation of a considerable number of additional established posts for the benefit of this staff, as a temporary measure; and also to the grant to those members of the electrical staff (other than faultsmen) who do not secure establishment, of a special allowance of 1s. a week, to cease on establishment, by way of compensation for certain privileges which were granted by the company on a higher scale than that which prevails in the Post Office.


asked the Postmaster-General whether he is aware that Walter Clapp, of 5, Withycombe Terrace, Gloucester, was engaged in the postal service for twelve years as a telegraph wireman and ten years as a construction foreman; that he was then induced to serve for fourteen years as a lineman at a wage which was 11s. per week less than the wage he received as a construction foreman, on the understanding that he would be put on the established list; and that after thirty-six years' postal service he had on the 31st March, 1912, to retire without having ever been put on the established list; whether, in consequence, he is not now entitled to a pension under the Superannuation Acts; and, if so, whether he will take the necessary steps to secure that Clapp should be paid the 11s. per week he lost on taking over the duty of a lineman under the circumstances above stated?


I am informed that, after ten years' service as labourer and wireman, and six years' service as foreman, Clapp was reduced to the rank of lineman in 1895 because he was unable to keep abreast of the requirements of a growing service. There is no record of any understanding that he would be placed on the establishment. In 1908 he was again tried as a foreman, but had to be reduced a second time in 1910 as he was unable to do the work that was required. He retired in March, 1912. As he was not an established officer, he could not be awarded a pension; but he received a gratuity of £50 5s. 4d. under the Superannuation Act, 1887, and an allowance of 3s. 8d. a week under the Workmen's Compensation Act.