§ Mr. COURTHOPE
asked the Postmaster-General whether he is aware that the cost of living at Bexhill-on-Sea is considerably higher than the index number of 111 given in the Board of Trade Return; that the outdoor force at that town are placed on the wages scale of a Class 3 office, whereas the indoor force are placed in a class lower; whether he will say how this classification was arrived at; and whether, in view of all the circumstances, he can see his way to grant the higher classification to the indoor force?
§ Mr. HOBHOUSE
The question of the classification of Bexhill-on-Sea for scales of pay of the indoor staff has recently been under consideration in connection with a memorial from the staff, but I regret that it was not possible to accede to their request for a higher classification. The cost of living index number 111 was ascertained by the Board of Trade after independent investigation, 1611W and the Post Office was, of course, bound to accept it. The circumstances in which the outdoor force were in most cases placed at a higher class than the indoor force were fully explained, at the time when the present system of classification was decided upon, in a Parliamentary Return of the 2nd July, 1908 (Post Office (Changes in Wages, etc.), to which I would refer the hon. Member.