Postage Act 1838
(1 & 2 Vict c.97, 14th August 1838)
An Act for imposing Rates of Postage on the Conveyance of Letters by Packet Boats between Places in the Mediterranean and other Parts.
[14th August 1838]
'WHEREAS by an Act passed in the First Year of the Reign of Her present Majesty, intituled An Act for the Regulation of the Duties of Postage, a Rate of Eight-pence was imposed on every Single Letter transmitted by Packet Boats between the Town or Fortress of Gibraltar (not having been first conveyed thither from the United Kingdom) and the Island of Malta, the Ionian Islands, Greece, Syria, or Egypt: And whereas it is expedient that the said Rate should be repealed, and certain other Rates of Packet Postage be imposed:' Be it therefore enacted by the Queen's most Excellent Majesty, by and with the Advice and Consent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons, in this present Parliament assembled, and by the Authority of the same, That the said Rate of Eight-pence herein-before mentioned shall be and the same is hereby repealed.
II. And be it enacted, That the Rates of Postage herein-after set forth shall be charged by Her Majesty's Postmaster General, for the Use of Her Majesty, on Letters transmitted by Packet Boats between the Places herein-after mentioned; (that is to say,)
For every Single Letter (not having been first brought or conveyed from the United Kingdom, or not being intended to be conveyed to the United Kingdom,) transmitted by Packet Boat between any of the Ports or Islands or Places situate upon the Mediterranean Sea, the Adriatic Sea, the Archipelago, and Black Sea, in Turkey in Europe and Asia, in Spain, Portugal, Italy, France in the Mediterranean, and upon the Northern Coast of Africa, whether in the Mediterranean or the Straits of Gibraltar, the Sum of Sixpence; and for every Single Letter (not having been first brought or conveyed from the United Kingdom, or not being intended to be sent to the United Kingdom,) transmitted between any of the Ports, Islands, or Places aforesaid and any Port or Place in the East Indies by way of the Red Sea or the Persian Gulf, in addition to any other Rates of Postage which may be payable in respect of such last-mentioned Letters, the Sum of Sixpence; and that every such Letter consisting of One Sheet or a single Piece of Paper, under the Weight of One Ounce, shall be charged as a Single Letter, and every Letter consisting of Two Sheets or Pieces of Paper, or containing any Inclosure, shall be charged with double the Rate of a Single Letter, and every Letter consisting of Three Sheets or Three Pieces of Paper, or containing Two Inclosures, shall be charged with treble the Rate of a Single Letter; and no Letter shall be charged at a higher Rate than a Treble Letter, unless it be One Ounce in Weight, and in that Case, whether it be a Single, Double, or Treble Letter, it shall be charged for One Ounce Four Times the Postage of a Single Letter, and for every Quarter of an Ounce beyond that Weight the Postage of a Single Letter.
III. And be it enacted, That it shall be lawful for Her Majesty's Postmaster General to charge, for the Use of Her Majesty, on all Letters conveyed by Packet Boats between one Part of Her Majesty's Dominions and another Part of the same Dominions, or between Her Majesty's Dominions and Foreign Parts, or between one Port in any Foreign Country and another Port in the same or any other Foreign Country, where Packet Boats or Communications by Packet Boats shall be hereafter established, and where Rates of Postage have not hitherto been authorized, such Rates of Postage as the Postmaster General shall, with the Consent of the Lords of the Treasury, deem expedient, but so that such Rates shall not be demandable by Law before the same shall have been published in the London Gazette; and such Rates shall be laid before Parliament within Fourteen Days after being so published, if Parliament shall be then sitting, or otherwise within Fourteen Days next after Parliament shall re-assemble: Provided nevertheless, that such Rates shall and may be demanded and taken immediately after they shall have been so published in the London Gazette, although the same shall not then have been laid before Parliament.
IV. And be it enacted, That it shall be lawful for Her Majesty's Postmaster General, with the Consent of the Lords of the Treasury, to require the Postage of Sixpence hereby imposed, and also any other Postage from Time to Time payable for Letters transmitted by Packet Boats or otherwise, between Places out of the United Kingdom, to be paid by the Sender on the Tender or Delivery of such Letters at the Post Office or other Place appointed by the Postmaster General for the Receipt of such Letters for the Purpose of Transmission by Packet Boats.
V. And be it enacted, That the Rates of Postage hereby imposed and authorized, as also the Rates of Postage imposed by the said recited Act, on Letters transmitted by Post between the United Kingdom and other Ports or Places out of the United Kingdom, shall be deemed British Postage; and the Rates hereby imposed and authorized, as also the Rates by the said recited Act imposed on Letters transmitted by Packet Boats between Places out of the United Kingdom, shall be deemed Packet Postage.
VI. And be it enacted, That the Provisions of this Act shall be construed according to the respective Interpretations of the Terms and Expressions contained in an Act passed in the First Year of the Reign of Her present Majesty, intituled An Act for consolidating the Laws relative to Offences against the Post Office of the United Kingdom, and for regulating the Judicial Administration of the Post Office Laws, and for explaining certain Terms and Expressions employed in those Laws, so far as those Interpretations are not repugnant to the Subject or inconsistent with the Context of such Provisions.
VII. And be it enacted, That this Act may be amended or repealed by any Act to be passed in the present Session of Parliament.