HC Deb 12 November 1918 vol 110 cc2561-2W

asked the Postmaster-General if he is aware that one week after the torpedoing of the R.M.S. "Leinster" the postal work of the Holyhead and Kingstown packets was suspended and the Post Office staff withdrawn to stationary duty in Dublin; that the suspension of this work is inimical to commercial interests, while it places the members of the Post Office staff of Dublin who have been withdrawn from their travelling duty in a serious position consequent upon the loss of their emoluments; and whether compensation will be given and when the resumption of postal work in the packets will take place?


The sorting staff were withdrawn from the Holyhead and Kingstown Packets upon my instructions. This withdrawal coupled with the Daylight Sailing of the Night Mail Packets adopted at the urgent request of the City of Dublin Steam Packet Company, has altered for the worse the course of post between many parts of Great Britain and Ireland. It will be my endeavour to restore the efficiency of the service as early as possible, but I can give no specific pledge as to the resumption of sorting. Generally speaking the sorting clerks are not as I understand suffering any loss. They are at present receiving in respect of overtime additional emoluments more than equivalent to their former additional emoluments from travelling, and they are unwilling to take up sorting duties in an Irish railway sorting carriage. Whether this be so or not, they are in the same position as other officers in other parts of the British Islands who have as a consequence of the War been withdrawn without compensation from travelling duties, and there is no ground upon which they can be exceptionally treated in this respect.