view raw text
RACING TELEGRAPHY IN ENGLAND. A bit of interesting information leaked out in the proceedings of parliament November 20. It was due to the fact that in England the telegraph is operated as a part of the post oiiice department and so its operations are a matter of legitimate inquiry on the part of any member of parliament disposed to ask questions. Sporting Life of November 27 says: "In the house of commons yesterday, Mr. Cooper asked the postmaster-general whether the post oiiice send a special start of telegraphists to nice meetings; and, if so. how many were sent to the Epsom race course on Derby day. 100S. and to the Doncaster race course on St. Leger day. 190$: whether lie could say in what building the telegraph office is situated on a race course: whether the post oiiice hires the room or whether the racecourse authorities make a payment for the facilities offered: and whether the telegrams to the press giving the betting and -state of odds receive the usual press rebate. "Mr. Sydney Buxton writes iu reply: The post office sends a special staff to all important race meetings. Sixty-four men were sent to Epsom on Derby day and sixty-two to Doncaster for the St. Leger. The race course authorities provide the office free. It is usually either in or adjoining the grandstand. Messages sent to the press under the usual regulations go at the press rates prescribed by parliament. The postmaster-general has no authority to discriminate against certain items of news, such as those giving the statu of the odds. "Mr. Cooper next asked the postmaster-general whether he could state how many telegrams were received at and dispatched from the temporary telegraph office on tlie race course at Newmarket on October 14 and 2S. lUOS: whether he could say whether these telegrams were sent to and dispatched by bookmakers and related to bets: and whether the post office incurred any financial loss by establishing offices on this race course on those days. "Mr. Sydney Buxton states: On October 14 Ce-sarewitcli day the numbers were S72 ordinary telegrams received at the grandstand: 3.772 ordinary telegrams dispatched from tlie grandstand, and 035 press telegrams dispatched from the grandstand. On the 2Sth Cambridgeshire day 773 ordinary telegrams received at the grandstand: 3,372 ordinary telegrams- dispatched from the grandstand, and 501 press telegrams dispatched from the grandstand. I can give no information as to the contents of these telegrams. No financial loss was incurred. "