§ LORD COLIN CAMPBELL
asked the Postmaster General, To what extent the telegraph has been extended in the Highland Counties of Scotland since 1871; what is the total sum paid by these Counties by way of guarantee against loss consequent on such extension; how far have the guarantees covered the cost of extension and working expenses; and, whether, taking into consideration the benefits which are likely to result to these Counties by a further extension of the telegraph, he will consider the question of reducing in future the sums demanded by way of guarantee?
§ MR. FAWCETT
I find that 100 telegraph offices have been opened since 1871 in Scotland, and that 18 of these have been opened under guarantees. During the last year, out of 10 of these offices opened under guarantee there was a loss amounting to £236, which fell upon the guarantors. In eight there was a slight gain, amounting in the aggregate to £54, and consequently nothing had to be defrayed by the guarantors. I am anxious to extend, as far as possible, the advantages of telegraphic communication, and will carefully consider whether any means can be adopted, consistently with the interests of the Exchequer, to enable guarantees to be given on reasonable terms.