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Tuesday, 17 July 1906

Mr AUSTIN CHAPMAN - I can now answer the question put to me on Friday last by the honorable member for North Sydney, in reference to city telegraph offices. The honorable member desired to know -

1.   The branch city telegraph offices in Sydney and in Melbourne, from which instruments have been recently, or are to be, removed?

2.   Which of those offices have tube connexion with the head office?

3.   Which will require a messenger service for conveyance of messages to a despatching office ?

4.   How frequently will messengers leave each of such offices with the accumulated messages?

The answers are as follow: -

1.   Instruments have been removed from the following offices in Sydney at the instance of the Public Service Commissioner, and on the recommendation of the Deputy PostmasterGeneral : - King-street, Queen Victoria Markets, George-street north, and the Exchange. At the latter office one instrument has been left for "urgent" rate telegrams. No other removals have been determined on. No similar action has been recently recommended in the case of

Melbourne, where three offices have been worked by tube and one by messenger for years past.

2.   Only the Exchange, but tube is not in working order.

3.   There is now a messenger service at the offices named for conveying messages to the General Post Office.

4.   Messengers are despatched from the Exchange about every six or seven minutes, provided, of course, telegrams have been lodged for them to convey. They at present use the trams, but it is proposed to supply them with bicycles. When this has been done the service will be accelerated, as it will be possible to arrange for a fixed time-table of five minutes to serve both the Exchange and George-street north offices. At the latter office, as well as at Queen Victoria Markets and King-street, there is at present a ten minutes' service, or as required, according to the times of lodgment of messages. It frequently happens that intervals of several minutes occur during which no telegrams are handed in at the three last-named offices.

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