asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of War Transport why the regional transport commissioner in Edinburgh does not follow the practice of Ministers and himself answer the letters addressed to him by hon. Members of the House dealing with matters concerning his office?
The Regional Transport Commissioner assures me that it is his practice to reply personally to letters addressed to him by any hon. Member of the House. Sometimes, however, he is unavoidably absent from his office, and it may then happen that in order to avoid delay, letters are signed for him by someone else.
Is my hon. Friend aware that this is the second occasion on which I have addressed this officer and a reply has been sent by an assistant, and if my hon. Friend and his Noble Friend can find the time and the courtesy to reply to hon. Members surely this officer can do the same?
I am sure my hon. and gallant Friend will realise that the Commissioner had no intention whatever of being discourteous to him, but his duties require that he must travel a great deal and cannot always know when it will be possible for him to get back to the office, and, that being so, he does ask assistants to sign for him in matters which he regards as perhaps rather urgent.