§ SIR CHARLES W. DILKE
asked the Postmaster General, Whether it is the fact that there are 32 "boy clerks" over twenty years of age in the Money Order Department of the General Post Office, the greater number of whom have served from four to five years; and, if so, why they have not been promoted to be ordinary clerks, as in other departments of the General Post Office, in which boy clerks have been promoted after a service seldom exceeding two years; and, whether it is the case that one of the regulations under which they entered the service stated that they would be promoted to the class of established clerks as vacancies occurred, or on attaining the age of nineteen years, provided their conduct had been satisfactory during the period of probationary service as boy clerks?
§ LORD JOHN MANNERS
Sir, of the boy clerks in the Money Order Office 23 are above 20 years of age, of whom the greater number have served from four to five years. The cause of delay in promoting them is that Treasury authority for the charges which would make possible the promotion of more than a few has not yet been received, and it was not considered expedient by the promotion of some to anticipate the carrying out of the general scheme. One of the regulations under which the boy clerks entered the Service is as follows:—They will not be retained as boy clerks after attaining the age of 19; but they will, if qualified, be promoted as vacancies occur to situations in the classes above.Had that regulation been strictly enforced, many of the boy clerks to whom the hon. Baronet refers would not now be in the Service, inasmuch as the vacancies were not enough to admit of the promotion of more than a few on their attaining the age of 19; but on their asking to be allowed to remain as boy clerks in the hope of obtaining promo- 1970 tion when the revision should be carried out, the regulation was relaxed in their favour.