Points of Order

– in the House of Commons at 12:31 pm on 13th May 2003.

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Photo of David Winnick David Winnick Labour, Walsall North 12:31 pm, 13th May 2003

On a point of order, Mr. Speaker. You will know that in the past two or three weeks a deadline has been set for posting letters to our constituents. If they are not posted by 6 o'clock, they will not be delivered the following day. I was involved in last night's debate and signed letters at about 9.30 pm. It used to be the case that the service would deliver letters that were sent at 8 or 9 pm to all parts of the United Kingdom. I see no reason why the new ruling has been introduced.

I make no criticism of the Post Office authorities here. Like all Members, I have always found them to be supportive in every possible way. The national organisation set the deadline, which should be unacceptable to the House. I wonder whether you, Mr. Speaker, and the Leader of the House can use whatever influence possible to reverse that decision.

Photo of Michael Martin Michael Martin Chair, Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, Speaker of the House of Commons, Chair, Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission

I have sympathy with the hon. Gentleman. For that reason, I have decided that the Administration Committee will look into the matter. I am awaiting advice from it.

Photo of Patrick McLoughlin Patrick McLoughlin Opposition Deputy Chief Whip (Commons)

Further to that point of order, Mr. Speaker. That information is most helpful to the House, but should not the Administration Committee also bear it in mind that when we changed to the new supposedly modern hours, the Leader of the House assured us that the facilities available to Members would remain available? As David Winnick said, one of the facilities that is most valued is that of being able to communicate with our constituents.