§ Mr. HARRISON-BROADLEY
asked the Postmaster-General the cause of the delay in connecting the subscribers at the new 1700W telephone exchange at North Cave, East Yorks; and if he is aware that contracts with subscribers were made in July, 1912, and that the instruments and stocks have been lying at the post office, North Cave, since last Christmas; and whether he will issue instructions to expedite matters so that this exchange may be completed?
§ Mr. HERBERT SAMUEL
I am making inquiry with the view of expediting the opening of the exchange at North Cave, and will write to the hon. Member.
Mr. GEORGE LLOYD
asked the Postmaster-General why the rendering of the monthly telephone accounts in the Stafford district is so delayed; whether he is aware that, whereas under the former administration telephone accounts came regularly each month, under the present administration they are often three months late; and whether, in view of the inconvenience and injustice caused to subscribers, he will take steps in regard to the matter?
§ Mr. HERBERT SAMUEL
The transfer of the telephone system to the State involved a redistribution of telephone areas for the satisfactory fusion of the Post Office and National Telephone Company's organisations, and in the case of Hanley, this meant that a number of exchanges were added to the district. Owing to the additional clerical work involved in the transfer of accounts, and owing also to an unusual amount of sickness among the staff of this particular office, the rendering of the accounts in question is in arrear. The staff for this purpose has been increased, and it is anticipated that normal conditions will shortly prevail in regard to these accounts.
§ Mr. CAMPION
asked the Postmaster-General whether his attention has been called to the delay, extending in some cases over five months, in the town of Worthing in regard to telephone connections; whether he is aware that, in spite of the fact that in certain cases the telephone wires are within five yards of the houses to be connected and that the owners have appealed personally to him, so far no steps have been taken to meet their requirements; and, if so, will he say what action he proposes to take in the matter?
§ Mr. H. SAMUEL
The delay in providing telephone circuits at Worthing has been due to the fact that the underground cables which were taken over from the 1701W National Telephone Company are being used to their full capacity. An extension of the local system of underground wires has been authorised. The work is now being pushed forward as rapidly as possible and provision is being made to meet future requirements for a considerable period. It may be the fact that in certain cases there are telephone wires close to the houses to be connected. In such cases, however, the wires are either already in use, or they cannot be utilised until additional cables are available for other parts of the new lines.