Search Legislation

Post Office Act 1969

Status:

This is the original version (as it was originally enacted).

General Provisions as to Transfer to the Post Office of Property, Rights and Liabilities of the Postmaster General

16Vesting in the Post Office of property, rights and liabilities generally

(1)On the appointed day, there shall vest by virtue of this section in the Post Office—

(a)all property which, immediately before that day, is vested in the Postmaster General and held in trust for Her Majesty;

(b)all works and apparatus belonging to the Postmaster General to which the enactments relating to telegraphs apply;

(c)the portions of the tube laid by the Pneumatic Despatch Company, Limited, that are vested in the Postmaster General under the Post Office (Pneumatic Tubes Acquisition) Act 1922;

(d)all estates and interests in land in the Channel Islands which, immediately before that day, are vested in Her Majesty, being estates and interests in land then occupied or used, in whole or in part, by the Postmaster General or (for, or in connection with, the exercise and performance of any of the Postmaster General's functions) by an officer or servant of the Crown;

(e)all property which, immediately before that day, is vested in the Crown and used, or appropriated for use, for, or in connection with, the exercise and performance of any of the Postmaster General's functions (being neither land nor property falling within paragraph (b) or (c) above);

(f)all interests of the Minister of Public Building and Works in the land delineated (and coloured blue) on the plans deposited in connection with the Bill for this Act with that Minister and authenticated by the signature of the Postmaster General (being land in the City of Edinburgh which, though held by that Minister, is occupied by the Postmaster General);

(g)all rights and liabilities enjoyed by, or incumbent on, the Crown immediately before that day with reference to the functions of the Postmaster General (including, in particular, but without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing words, all rights so enjoyed, and liabilities so incumbent, that subsist by virtue of a contract entered into by the Minister of Public Building and Works on behalf of the Crown for the erection or execution of buildings or works on land in whose case an estate or interest therein vests in the Post Office by virtue of paragraph (a) above, not being land which, immediately before that day, is the subject of an agreement to which the parties are the Postmaster General, the Minister of Public Building and Works and the Post Office for the conveyance, assignment or transfer by the Post Office to that Minister of the estate or interest that so vests).

(2)The following shall be excepted from the operation of the foregoing subsection, namely.—

(a)chattels or corporeal moveables used, or appropriated for use, exclusively for, or in connection with, the exercise and performance by the Postmaster General of his functions under the Government Annuities Act 1929, the Post Office Savings Bank Acts 1954 and 1966, the National Debt Act 1958 or the National Loans Act 1968, not being telegraphic apparatus;

(b)records within the meaning of the Public Records Act 1958;

(c)copyright (other than copyright in registered designs);

(d)property for whose vesting in the Post Office or the Minister of Public Building and Works provision is made by the following provisions of this Act;

(e)rights and liabilities for whose vesting in the Post Office provision is so made ;

(f)rights and liabilities enjoyed by, or incumbent on, the Crown referable solely to the exercise and performance by the Postmaster General of his functions under the Wireless Telegraphy Acts 1949 to 1967 (other than rights and liabilities that subsist by virtue of a contract for the supply of chattels or corporeal moveables or by virtue of such a contract to which the Minister of Public Building and Works is a party as falls within subsection (1)(g) above);

(g)rights and liabilities enjoyed by, or incumbent on, the Crown referable solely to the exercise and performance by the Postmaster General of his functions under the Government Annuities Act 1929, the Post Office Savings Bank Acts 1954 and 1966, the National Debt Act 1958 or the National Loans Act 1968 (other than rights and liabilities that subsist by virtue of such a contract to which the Minister of Public Building and Works is a party as falls within subsection (1)(g) above);

(h)rights and liabilities that subsist by virtue of section 46 of the Patents Act 1949 or paragraph 1 of Schedule 1 to the Registered Designs Act 1949 (Crown use of patented inventions and registered designs);

(i)rights and liabilities that subsist by virtue of a contract entered into by the Controller of Her Majesty's Stationery Office on behalf of the Crown; and

(j)rights and liabilities that subsist under such a contract entered into on behalf of the Crown as falls within subsection (1) of section 18 of this Act (it being assumed that subsection (2) thereof had been omitted).

17Power of the Minister to override section 16 in case of difficulty or uncertainty

(1)If it appears to the Minister expedient so to do for the purpose of removing any difficulties or uncertainties arising out of the operation of the last foregoing section, he may by order—

(a)direct that such property (other than land), rights or liabilities as may be specified in the order (being property, rights or liabilities which, apart from the order, would vest in -the Post Office by virtue of that section or which have so vested) shall, notwithstanding that section, not so vest or, as the case may be, be deemed not to have so vested ; or

(b)direct that such property (other than land), rights or liabilities as may be so specified (being property, rights or liabilities which, apart from the order, would not so vest or which have not so vested) shall, notwithstanding that section, so vest on the appointed day or, as the case may be, on such day as may be so specified.

(2)No order shall be made under this section by the Minister with respect to chattels or corporeal moveables after the expiration of the period of twelve months beginning with the appointed day.

(3)Where an order under this section operates to the advantage of the Post Office, the Minister may, with the consent of the Treasury, direct that the debt that will fall, or has fallen, by virtue of the following provisions of this Part of this Act, to be assumed by the Post Office to him shall be increased by a sum specified in the direction (being a sum appearing to him to represent the value of the advantage); and where an order under this section operates to the disadvantage of the Post Office, the Minister may, with the like consent, direct that that debt shall be reduced by a sum specified in the direction (being a sum sufficient, in his opinion, to compensate the Post Office for the disadvantage).

18Vesting in the Post Office of rights and liabilities under certain contracts conferring on the Crown incidental rights as to patents,

(1)Where a contract entered into on behalf of the Crown by the Postmaster General contains provision conferring on the Crown (otherwise than by reference to the office of master of the Post Office and incidentally only to other matters with which the contract is principally concerned) rights in respect of a patent, invention or registered design, the rights of the Crown subsisting by virtue of the contract (other than such as subsist by virtue of that provision) and the liabilities of the Crown so subsisting (other than such, if any, as relate to payment in respect of an exercise of rights that so subsist) shall, on the appointed day, vest in the Post Office by virtue of this section but the Post Office shall—

(a)enjoy, concurrently with the Crown and subject to the like liability (if any) as is incumbent on the Crown to make payment in respect of an exercise thereof, the Crown's rights under the contract that so subsist and

(b)be liable to satisfy any unsatisfied liability of the Crown to make payment in respect of an exercise by the Postmaster General, on behalf of the Crown, of those rights.

(2)In so far as a contract provides for the terms upon which use of an invention may be made by virtue of section 46 of the Patents Act 1949 for the manufacture of articles by the department of the Postmaster General or the manufacture and supply to that department of articles by a person authorised by it or provides for the terms upon which use of a registered design may be made by virtue of paragraph 1 of Schedule 1 to the Registered Designs Act 1949 for either of these purposes, it shall be excepted from the operation of the foregoing subsection.

19Transfer of assets of the Post Office Fund and general reserve, of certain other moneys, and of certain investments

(1)On the appointed day, the assets of the Post Office Fund and of the general reserve maintained by the Postmaster General in pursuance of section 7 of the Post Office Act 1961 shall, by virtue of this section, vest in the Post Office, and that fund and that reserve shall cease to exist.

(2)On the appointed day, there shall vest in the Post Office, by virtue of this section.—

(a)all moneys in the hands of the Postmaster General which, though not forming part of the assets of the Post Office Fund, would, if this Act had not passed, have fallen to be paid by him into that fund ;

(b)any right of the Postmaster General to repayment of Ways and Means advances made by him under section 11 (investment powers) of the Post Office Act 1961;

(c)any bills or securities vested in him in consequence of an exercise of the power of investment conferred on him by that section ; and

(d)any shares acquired by him under Part VII of this Act. Transfer to the Post Office of the Postmaster General's statutory Rights and Liabilities as to Mails and Telegraphs and of Rights and Liabilities, &c, of his under certain Acts authorising the Acquisition of Land or the Execution of Works

20Rights and liabilities as to conveyance of mails

(1)On the appointed day—

(a)the right which, by virtue of subsection (1) of section 29 of the Post Office Act 1953 (hereafter in this section referred to as the " principal Act"), the Postmaster General enjoys immediately before that day to require a person by whom a ship is owned or worked to carry parcels in the ship and the countervailing obligation which, by virtue of subsection (2) of that section, is, immediately before that day, incumbent on him to pay remuneration for services rendered under that section shall become those of the Post Office;

(b)the rights which, by virtue of sections 33, 34, 36(1) and 42 of the principal Act (which contain provisions enabling him to compel railway undertakers to undertake the conveyance of mail-bags by train and by ships which are owned or worked by them or in the case of which they are parties to arrangements for the use, maintenance or working thereof) he enjoys immediately before that day and the countervailing obligations with respect to payment of remuneration for services performed which, immediately before that day, are, by virtue of sections 35 and 36(2) of the principal Act, incumbent on him shall become those of the Post Office ;

(c)the right which, by virtue of section 44(1)(b) and (c) of the principal Act, he enjoys immediately before that day to require the British Railways Board and certain other bodies which provide transport services to perform (subject to the restrictions imposed by section 45 of the principal Act) reasonable services with regard to the conveyance of mail-bags and the countervailing obligation which, by virtue of section 44(2) of the principal Act, is, immediately before that day, incumbent on him to pay remuneration for services performed shall become those of the Post Office; and

(d)the obligation to him which, by virtue of subsection (1) of section 38 of the principal Act, is, immediately before that day, incumbent on railway undertakers to perform services with respect to the conveyance of mail-bags and the other matters mentioned in that subsection and the right which, by virtue of subsection (2) of that section, they enjoy, immediately before that day, to receive from him remuneration for services performed shall respectively become an obligation to the Post Office and a right against it.

(2)Accordingly, as from the appointed day.—

(a)sections 29, 33 to 36, 38, 44 and 45 of the principal Act shall have effect as if, for references to the Postmaster General, there were substituted references to the Post Office ; and

(b)sections 39, 40 and 41 of that Act (which respectively prohibit railway undertakers from making byelaws, &c, which militate against the provisions of that Act relating to the conveyance of mails by railway, provide for the manner in which notices may be served under that Act on railway undertakers and penalize certain refusals and neglects by such undertakers in the matter of the conveyance of mails by railway) shall have similar effect.

21Rights and liabilities as to telegraphs

(1)On the appointed day, the rights and liabilities which, by virtue of the provisions of the Telegraph Acts which are not repealed by this Act, are enjoyed by, and incumbent on, the Postmaster General immediately before that day shall become those of the Post Office, and it shall become subject to the restrictions imposed by those provisions to which the Postmaster General is subject immediately before that day; and, accordingly.—

(a)on that day, so much of section 2 of the Telegraph Act 1868 as provides that the term " the company " in the Telegraph Act 1863 shall, in addition to the meaning assigned to it in that Act, mean the Postmaster General shall cease to have effect; and

(b)as from that day, references in the said provisions and in section 20 of the Public Utilities Street Works Act 1950 (which extends the powers exercisable under section 21 of the Telegraph Act 1863) to the company and to the Postmaster General (except references in such of those provisions as are expressly dealt with by the following provisions of this Act and except the first two references to the company in section 30 of the Telegraph Act 1863, the first three such references in section 33 of that Act, the ninth reference to the Postmaster General in section 6 of the Telegraph Act 1878, the first reference to him in the Telegraph (Construction) Act 1911 and the first reference to him in the Telegraph (Construction) Act 1916) shall be construed as referring to the Post Office, except so far as the context excludes such a construction, and the excepted references in the said sections 30, 33 and 6 and those in the two last-mentioned Acts shall be construed as including references to the Post Office.

(2)In this section "the Telegraph Acts" means the Telegraph Act 1863, the Telegraph Act 1868, the Telegraph Act 1870, the Telegraph Act 1878, the Telegraph (Isle of Man) Act 1889, the Telegraph Act 1892, the Telegraph (Construction) Act 1908, the Telegraph (Arbitration) Act 1909, the Telegraph (Construction) Act 1911 and the Telegraph (Construction) Act 1916.

22Rights and liabilities, arising out of Acts authorising the acquisition of land or the execution of works

(1)Any provision of the Sites Acts, the Post Office Extension Act 1865, the Manchester Post Office Act 1876, the Post Office (London) Railway Act 1913, the Post Office (Site and Railway) Act 1954, the Post Office Works Act 1959 or the Post Office Subway Act 1966 which is in force immediately before the appointed day and contains references to the Postmaster General shall, so far as necessary for preserving its effect on and after that day, have effect as from that day as if those references were references to the Post Office.

(2)As from the appointed day, any rights or powers vested in, or exercisable by, the Post Office under the enactments relating to telegraphs in respect of works of any kind whatsoever executed under those enactments shall extend to, and may be exercised by it in respect of, the portions of the tube constructed by the Pneumatic Despatch Company, Limited, that vest in the Post Office by virtue of section 16 of this Act.

(3)Section 20 of the Bristol Cattle Market Act 1930 (which empowers the Postmaster General, amongst others, to enter into and carry out agreements with reference to any of the matters referred to in that Act or the agreements mentioned in that section) shall, as from the appointed day, have effect with the substitution, for the reference to the Postmaster General, of a reference to the Post Office.

(4)Section 16 of the City of London (Various Powers) Act 1950 (which provides for the continuance of the making, by the Postmaster General, the Mayor and commonalty and citizens of the city of London acting by the common council and the Mercers' Company of certain periodic payments to the incumbents and clerks of certain benefices in the city, being payments originally required to be made under enactments repealed by that Act) shall, as from the appointed day, have effect as if, in Schedule 1 to that Act, for references to the Postmaster General, there were substituted references to the Post Office; and the rights of indemnity in favour of the Postmaster General that are saved by the proviso to section 18 of that Act shall, as from that day, enure for the benefit of the Post Office and the charges on property to secure the payment of money payable to the Postmaster General in respect of indemnities so saved which are themselves also saved by that proviso shall, as from that day, have effect accordingly.

(5)The reference in subsection (1) above to the Sites Acts is a reference to the Acts passed during the years 1885 to 1938 (both inclusive) the short title of each of which consists of the words " The Post Office (Sites) Act" followed by the year in which it was passed.

Back to top

Options/Help

Print Options

You have chosen to open The Whole Act

The Whole Act you have selected contains over 200 provisions and might take some time to download. You may also experience some issues with your browser, such as an alert box that a script is taking a long time to run.

Would you like to continue?

You have chosen to open The Whole Act as a PDF

The Whole Act you have selected contains over 200 provisions and might take some time to download.

Would you like to continue?

You have chosen to open the Whole Act

The Whole Act you have selected contains over 200 provisions and might take some time to download. You may also experience some issues with your browser, such as an alert box that a script is taking a long time to run.

Would you like to continue?

You have chosen to open Schedules only

The Schedules you have selected contains over 200 provisions and might take some time to download. You may also experience some issues with your browser, such as an alert box that a script is taking a long time to run.

Would you like to continue?

Close

Legislation is available in different versions:

Latest Available (revised):The latest available updated version of the legislation incorporating changes made by subsequent legislation and applied by our editorial team. Changes we have not yet applied to the text, can be found in the ‘Changes to Legislation’ area.

Original (As Enacted or Made): The original version of the legislation as it stood when it was enacted or made. No changes have been applied to the text.

Close

Opening Options

Different options to open legislation in order to view more content on screen at once

Close

More Resources

Access essential accompanying documents and information for this legislation item from this tab. Dependent on the legislation item being viewed this may include:

  • the original print PDF of the as enacted version that was used for the print copy
  • lists of changes made by and/or affecting this legislation item
  • confers power and blanket amendment details
  • all formats of all associated documents
  • correction slips
  • links to related legislation and further information resources
Close

More Resources

Use this menu to access essential accompanying documents and information for this legislation item. Dependent on the legislation item being viewed this may include:

  • the original print PDF of the as enacted version that was used for the print copy
  • correction slips

Click 'View More' or select 'More Resources' tab for additional information including:

  • lists of changes made by and/or affecting this legislation item
  • confers power and blanket amendment details
  • all formats of all associated documents
  • links to related legislation and further information resources