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Telephone Service

Volume 320: debated on Monday 22 February 1937

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28.

asked the Postmaster-General whether he is aware that the telephone kiosk promised to Livingston Station village, West Lothian, on 15th December last, has not yet been set up; what is the cause of the delay; and when will the erection of the kiosk be carried through?

A site has been selected and when this has been approved by the county council, the kiosk will be provided as soon as possible. As regards the question of delay, I would refer the hon. Member to my reply to his question of 15th December last.

May I ask when application was made to the county council for authority to erect this kiosk?

As soon as our plans were prepared, we applied to the county council for their permission, but I think my hon. Friend should be well satisfied now that he is going to get his kiosk.

Is the hon. Gentleman aware that this delay reflects unfavourably on both the Post Office and the county council?

37.

asked the Postmaster-General what steps he has taken or proposes to take to accelerate the installation of telephones in those districts of the county of Warwickshire which adjoin the city of Birmingham?

The difficulty to which the hon. Member refers has been experienced at eight exchanges in the area. At half of these exchanges the public demand for service, which has followed the recent tariff concessions, has outrun the capacity of the exchange equipment. In the remaining areas there is shortage of external plant. I have the matter very carefully under review, and I will do my utmost to minimise the inconvenience caused by the delay in obtaining the necessary plant.

While thanking the hon. Gentleman for that reply, is he aware that in my constituency there are a number of subscribers who have been waiting well over six months for service, and that in many cases their names have been in the Telephone Directory since last October, and they are still without service?

This is one of the penalties of success. The concessions made have been so popular that we have had an overwhelming number of new orders. I can assure my hon. Friend that we are doing our level best for all concerned.

Is not this state of affairs one of the penalties of the Government's rearmament programme?