Departmental Correspondence (Delays)

Oral Answers to Questions — Trade and Commerce – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 17th December 1945.

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Photo of Mr Sidney Shephard Mr Sidney Shephard , Newark 12:00 am, 17th December 1945

asked the President of the Board of Trade if he is aware that business firms frequently experience a delay of three to four weeks in obtaining a reply to their letters from his Department; and if he will give instructions to his officials to speed up their replies.

Photo of Sir Stafford Cripps Sir Stafford Cripps , Bristol East

Owing to the heavy pressure of work in my Department and to the shortage of staff, there is unfortunately some delay in answering letters. I am taking all possible steps to improve matters in this respect.

Photo of Mr Sidney Shephard Mr Sidney Shephard , Newark

Could the right hon. and learned Member consider setting up a working party to investigate his Department?

Photo of Sir Stafford Cripps Sir Stafford Cripps , Bristol East

There has, for a long time, been such a party.

Photo of Mr Frederick Erroll Mr Frederick Erroll , Altrincham and Sale

Could the Minister issue a circular indicating which letters should be addressed to his regional offices and which to his head office, as that would save some delay?

Photo of Sir Stafford Cripps Sir Stafford Cripps , Bristol East

If the hon. and gallant Gentleman will look at the "Board of Trade Journal" he will see that particulars are given of which matters are dealt with regionally.