HC Deb 19 December 1938 vol 342 cc2491-2W
Mr. Harvey

asked the Postmaster-General whether in view of the rearrangement on grounds of economy of the services of the British Broadcasting Corporation, he will take steps to ensure that the news broadcasts in foreign languages are continued?

Major Tryon

I would refer the hon. Member to the reply which I gave on the 5th December to my hon. and gallant Friend the Member for Cardiff South (Captain A. Evans).

Mr. Parker

asked the Postmaster-General what is the present position with regard to trade union organisation in the British Broadcasting Corporation, and what is the part it plays in negotiating salaries, wages and conditions for the staff?

Major Tryon

As the hon. Member is aware, the general question of staff representation in the British Broadcasting Corporation was considered by a committee consisting of Sir James Rae, Mr. J. W. Bowen and Mr. G. L. Darbyshire, and their report recommending the introduction of Whitley machinery was circulated by the corporation to its staff for consideration and discussion. I am informed that a ballot of the staff has now been held, which shows a majority in favour of a Whitley scheme; and that steps are being taken by the corporation to bring such a scheme into operation for all sections of the staff. The position of the corporation under such a scheme in relation to associations or unions is dealt with in the report, a copy of which I shall be happy to forward to the hon. Member.

Mr. Fleming

asked the Postmaster-General whether the wire broadcast relay system operated by the General Post Office has increased the number of its subscribers during the past 12 months; and what percentage of the number of wireless licence holders do those subscribers represent?

Major Tryon

The wire broadcast relay exchanges are at present operated not by the Post Office, but by private concerns under licence. During a recent period of 12 months the number of subscribers increased by 2,130. They now represent 2.85 per cent. of the total number of wireless receiving licence holders, or about 1 in 35 of the subscribers.

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