HC Deb 25 November 1914 vol 68 cc1139-40W

asked the Postmaster-General whether he is aware that on the 17th and 27th August, respectively, Mr. James Good, of 25, Heathfield Gardens, Chiswick, handed in for dispatch telegrams to Arthur Seddon, a British subject, resident at Valparaiso, concerning the safety of his daughter, Ada Seddon, detained in Berlin, and paid the sums of 24s. 9d. and 22s. for such telegrams without being informed of any difficulties or risks of transmission to Valparaiso, neither of which telegrams were delivered; whether the same were dispatched from England; and, if not, for what reason, and upon what ground, does the Department refuse to refund or justify the retention of the sum of £2 6s. 9d. paid for services which were never rendered, notwithstanding repeated applications?

Captain NORTON

I am not in a position to furnish information in regard to the treatment of the telegrams referred to by the hon. Member. All telegrams to and from places abroad are accepted subject to censorship and at the sender's risk; that is to say, subject to the condition that no inquiry can be made as to the disposal of the telegrams and that claims for the reimbursement of the sums paid for transmission or otherwise cannot be considered. Search has been made for the forms of the telegrams in question but at present only one can be traced—namely, that sent on the 27th of August—and, according to the record, the fact that it could only be accepted at the sender's risk was duly notified when the telegram was handed in.