|The Rushden Echo, 15th December, 1911, transcribed by Jim Hollis
Rushden Urban District Council
The Town’s Financial Position
The Widening of Church-Parade
Rectory-Road Improvement Dropped
Recreation Ground Question
A meeting of this Council was held in the Council Chambers, Rushden, on Wednesday evening, when there were present Councillors John Claridge (chairman), George Miller (vice-chairman), A. Kitchin, F. Knight, F. Ballard, J. S. Clipson, T. Swindall, C. Bates, J. Spencer, W. Bazeley, with the Clerk (Mr. G. S. Mason), the Surveyor (Mr. Madin), and the Sanitary Inspector (Mr. Allen).
Plans, Etc., Committee
A meeting of the Plans, Highways, and Lighting Committee was held at the Council Buildings on Wednesday, the 29th Nov., 1911, when there were presen :- Messrs. John Claridge (chairman), G. Miller, F. Ballard, C. E. Bayes, W. Bazeley, J. S. Clipson, and Fred Knight.
were presented by:-
Mr. J. L. Wallis for a coal barn at the rear of his house on the Bedford-road and passed.
Messrs. R. and S. Robinson for a factory in Allen-road and passed.
Messrs. Ashford and Campion for additions to their factory in Newton-road and passed, the Surveyor to point out that the Committee were not satisfied with the stair-case accommodation.
Mr. C. W. Horrell for a building connecting his offices and factory in Fitzwilliam-street and passed.
The attention of the Committee was called to the fact that a portion of this road was at present known as Grove-road and a further portion as Grove-street thus causing some confusion.
It was resolved to recommend the Council to name the whole road Grove-road and to give instructions for the nameplates to be altered accordingly.
Church Parade Improvements
The Chairman reported that a Sub-Committee from the Roads and Bridges Committee of the County Council visited Rushden on the 22nd instant and inspected the site of the proposed improvement in Newton-road and by the Church yard. By the improvement it is proposed to take down the building in Newton-road known as the Clerk’s house, to remove the bank in front of the Vestry Hall and widen the whole of the Newton-road leading into the High-street to a line in conformity with the Council Buildings and Free Library. The improvement would then be continued from the Vestry Hall to the “Wheatsheaf” Hotel by setting back the Church yard wall and throwing into the roadway sufficient land to make it 32 feet wide in the narrowest places with a four foot footpath on the roadside of the wall; the wall to be rebuilt in stone with a wrought iron fence on top. The sub-committee expressed their cordial approval of the proposals and the Committee understood that they would recommend the County Council to submit a scheme to the Road Board with a view to obtaining a grant for carrying same into effect.
The Surveyor submitted an amended plan showing several suggestions made by the Sub-committee, together with an amended estimate, amounting in the whole to £1,200. The Committee approved the plan and estimate as submitted and directed the Surveyor to forward the same to the County Surveyor for submission to the Roads and Bridges Committee.
In the event of the improvement being carried out it was estimated that the cost amounting to £1,200 would be apportioned as follows:-
In consequence of the buildings recently erected at the corner of Four-roads the Surveyor reported that it had become necessary to move the public lamp on that site and he suggested that a guide post similar to that on the Kimbolton-road at the top of the Hayway be erected and used as a lamp post. He also suggested that the lamp there should be one with a double light.
The Committee approved and the Surveyor was instructed accordingly.
Fire Engines and Steam Roller
The Surveyor submitted the reports of the National Boiler Insurance Co. with regard to these boilers.
Electric Lighting Order
The Clerk reported that he had received from the solicitors to the promoters a draft of the order with a letter asking the Council to pass a resolution consenting to the application and requesting that they might be allowed to attend the next Council meeting on the 13th December.
The Committee decided to make no recommendation to the Council on the subject.
The Clerk reported that he had been in communication with Mrs. Warner and the Midland Railway Co. with regard to this improvement. He and the Surveyor had met Mrs. Warner on the site with regard to the property which it would be necessary to acquire from her in order to widen the road near the approach to Beaconsfield-terrace, and it was understood she would be prepared to give up the property required provided the Council would undertake to do certain works in connection with the re-erection of the out-houses. The Surveyor estimated the cost of the works required at £280.
With regard to the land between the rows of houses in Beaconsfield-terrace it had been assumed that Mrs. Warner would be prepared to give this up for a nominal consideration but Mrs. Warner stated at the interview that she was not prepared to do so and would require substantial compensation.
The Committee did not at present feel disposed to advise the Council to enter into negotiations for the purchase of this land and under these circumstances recommend that for the present negotiations be discontinued.
Mr. Claridge said that hardly anyone on the Council thought they were going to purchase that land. The price wanted was beyond what any one of them expected. He took it that they were all agreed that negotiations were over for a time.
The report was adopted.
Finances and Estates Committee
A meeting of the Finance and Estates Committee was held at the Council Buildings on Tuesday, the 5th December, 1911, when there were present:- Messrs. J. Claridge (chairman), G. Miller, F. Ballard, W. Bazeley, F. Knight, and T. Swindall.
Surveyor’s Cash Account
The Committee examined the Surveyor’s cash account with the wages books, the expenditure shown therein being as follows:-
The Committee examined the Collector’s accounts, from which it appeared that the following sums had been collected since the last meeting:-
The Treasurer’s accounts were also examined from which it appeared that he had received the following sums since the last meeting:-
And that the following balances were in hand on the under-mentioned accounts:-
Tradesmen’s and Other Accounts
A number of accounts, amounting to £669/2/5 were examined and passed for payment.
The report was adopted.
The Clerk submitted the following memorandum with regard to the finances of the Council, and it was resolved that the same be printed and circulated with the minutes:-
It will be noted that although the revenue from the rate has increased by £299/13/10 during the three years, and Water Board Precepts have during the same period decreased by £287/15/0, the expenditure chargeable to rates on the other hand has increased by £831/15/3. The chief items of the increased expenditure are the following:-
N.B. The net cost of district roads for the year 1910-11 was £1,015/16/2. The average cost for the six years previous to 1908-9 was £1,032/13/2, so that what appears above as a large increase only in fact brings up the expenditure to the normal amount required for proper maintenance.
The estimated deficiency for the current year is £52/6/5.
Assuming that the estimates for 1912-13 are based on the same careful lines as those for the current year and allowing for an increase in the produce of the General District Rate equal to the estimated deficiency this year, next year’s income will balance the year’s expenditure.
It is possible that the new sewage loan may not be raised prior to the 31st March, 1912, but if this is so, it must inevitably be raised shortly after that date, in the early summer of 1912, and provision should be made for repayment of the first instalment in the estimates for the year ending 31st March, 1913, even if such instalment does not become due until early in the next financial year as the present working balance is altogether insufficient to meet such an instalment after the close of the year.
It will be thus seen that if the annual expenditure (particularly in the way of permanent charges) is increased by any substantial amount, beyond say £100 per annum, the General District Rate must be raised in the absence of increased revenue.
An increase of revenue can only arise from
(a) General District Rate, and (b) increased water consumption. A substantial increase in the former can only be expected with renewed operations in the building trade and with regard to (b) as practically the whole town now takes town water, an increase within the district can only be expected from new properties as erected.
From outside the district the supplies to Irchester and Wollaston will, it is hoped, in the course of a year or two help the Water Board considerably.
Mr. Claridge said that they were not in a very good financial position, and as set out by the Clerk there would not be much more than a balance of £100, unless their
increased, and there was not much prospect of an increase at present. They hoped to get an increased revenue from the Water Board. An order had been granted for Wollaston, but not for Irchester at present, but they were only waiting for the sanction of the Midland Railway Co. to go over their bridge. They were not in a position to do very much in the way of a recreation ground. The most they would be able to do would be to spend from £75 to £100. Much as they desired certain improvements, he did not feel that he could recommend any expenditure which would involve an increase of the district rate. (Hear, hear) He thought the rate was quite as high as it should be.
Mr. Bazeley said it seemed to him that that Council would make an excellent Board of Guardians. (Laughter) He did not think it was fair to the working class of Rushden for the Council to all the while hold their hands in all these necessary things which were brought before them. They ought to be more considerate as a Council to the working classes.
Mr. Spencer objected to the Clerk getting out that statement without instruction from the Council. He thought he (Mr. Spencer) had been unfairly treated and that the town had been
over the town development and other schemes.
Mr. Miller thought Mr. Spencer was out of order in making an attack upon the Clerk.
Mr. Spencer said that there was some object behind that statement. It was very misleading; from it, it appeared that there was no possibility for hope. It was an unpleasant matter and he was bound to say something unpleasant about it. There was nothing mentioned about the improvement in High-street which cost £199/9/2 and a sum of £54 spent on Washbrook-road, which would not occur next year. They were keeping, in his opinion, from the public the improved financial position of the Council. The statement was, he thought, thoroughly incomplete and unreliable. He very much regretted that the Clerk had undertaken to do this because he had always found him very courteous and willing to oblige. He felt very strongly on the point.
Mr. Miller, on behalf of the Finance Committee, wished to
Thank The Clerk
for drawing up that statement. It was no idea of the Clerk’s that that statement should be brought before the Council.
Mr. Ballard said he moved the resolution that the matter should be put before the Council and public, for he thought it quite right that if that statement was a correct one it should go before the public. He did not think Mr. Spencer should object to that.
Mr. Spencer: I object to the principle.
Mr. Claridge said that the Clerk had prepared that statement for the Finance Committee and he was very reticent about its going before the Council.
Mr. Spencer said he withdrew the blame from the Clerk and put it on the Finance Committee.
Health and Sanitary Committee
A meeting of the Health and Sanitary Committee was held at the Council Buildings on Wednesday, the 6th December, 1911, when there were present:- Messrs. G. Miller (Chairman), J. Claridge, C. Bates, J. Spencer, T. Swindall, and the Ven. Arthur Kitchin.
Health and Sanitary Reports
As requested by the Committee at their last meeting the Medical Officer attended with a special report on the prevalence of diphtheria cases in the town during the late summer and present autumn. The Officer stated that he visited Rushden on November 3rd and, with the Inspector, inspected Orchard-place, where several cases had occurred. They found everything clean and satisfactory, the drains and closets all in good order, and nothing at all likely to cause the disease. He again, with the Inspector, on November 7th inspected other places where diphtheria had been notified, and in no instance could anything be found to account for the outbreak; the drains were all tested and found satisfactory. After careful consideration he was satisfied that the cause could not be attributed to the water, milk, or drainage and came to the conclusion that the schools were primarily responsible for the spread of diphtheria. “There, children of most susceptible age were brought together daily for some hours, often in an impure atmosphere, sometimes scanty ventilation, often using the same utensils, slates, pencils, etc., and being in intimate contact with each other. It had been observed and pointed out that a marked increase in the number of cases of diphtheria in children had followed on compulsory elementary education, and, further, a progressive development of infectiousness was brought about by the aggregation of slight, possibly unrecognisable cases among susceptible children at school.”
The Officer further referred to the fact that when the schools were closed for holidays the diphtheria cases diminished in number. He strongly recommended a thorough and frequent disinfection of the schools and the use of a formaline spray to disinfect all books, slates, and other utensils.
The Committee discussed the report very fully with the Officer and it was resolved to communicate the effect of the report to the Education Authority and ask that instructions might be given to the caretakers of the various schools to use disinfectants freely in the cleansing of them and the Sanitary Inspector authorised to periodically spray the schools and furniture with formaline.
The Inspector was instructed to purchase a small sprayer for use in private house.
The Medical Officer reported that 36 cases of infectious disease had been notified since the last meeting, viz., 26 of scarlet fever, three of erysipelas, and seven of diphtheria.
The Sanitary Inspector reported that during the past month 39 preliminary notices had been issued, calling attention to nuisances, etc., which were being complied with.
The Inspector also reported that on the advice of the medical practitioner in attendance he had destroyed a quantity of bedding after a death from consumption. It was resolved to recommend the Council to replace the bedding.
Four books belonging to the Free Library, found in an infected house, had been destroyed. The Committee recommend the Council to replace the books.
A Notice had been received from H.M. Inspector of Factories calling attention to the insufficient sanitary accommodation at Messrs. Ashford and Campion’s factory, there being no separate accommodation provided for both sexes. The surveyor reported that Messrs. Ashford and Campion had presented a plan for the reconstruction of their factory giving the necessary accommodation.
Acting on the advice of the Medical Officer, the Inspector had sprayed and disinfected the Newton-road and Alfred-street schools during the month.
The Inspector gave a detailed statement of his work during the past month.
The Sanitary Inspector reported that Mr. J. C. Mayo had failed to provide receptacles for house refuse for his houses, Nos. 24 to 42, Oakley-road, as required by the Council.
It was resolved to recommend the Council to instruct the Inspector to provide the necessary utensils and to take proceedings against Mr. Mayo for the recovery of the expenses incurred.
The Inspector also reported that as instructed he had obtained and placed upon the premises Nos. 130, 132, 134, and 136 High-street South, suitable receptacles for the deposit of refuse.
The Clerk was instructed to apply to Mr. S. Hill, the owner, for expenses incurred, and in default to take proceedings for the recovery thereof.
at rear of Nos. 52 to 112, Glassbrook-road, and rear of Sartoris-road, Wellingborough-road, and Irchester-road.
The Inspector reported that these foot-ways, not being repairable by the inhabitants at large, were in a condition dangerous to passengers using the same. He had communicated with the owners, requiring them to put the footways in repair, but as yet nothing had been done in that direction.
It was resolved to recommend the Council to instruct the Clerk to give notice in writing to the owners of the lands and premises abutting on the footways in question and require them within one month to level and make up the said footways and pave the same with asphalt.
Dairies, Milkshops, and Cowsheds Order
The quarterly report of Mr. Bainbridge was received, from which it appeared that on the 28th and 30th November and the 1st December, 1911, he had visited 27 premises, belonging to 25 cowkeepers, and examined 270 cows and heifers, again making special examination of their udders and throats. The Inspector of Nuisances was instructed to see two of the owners with regard to certain of the cows mentioned in the report.
Public Health (Tuberculosis) Regulations, 1911
The Clerk submitted the General Order and regulations of the Local Government Board recently made under which pulmonary tuberculosis was made a compulsory notifiable disease and was instructed to obtain and supply each member of the Council with a copy of the Order and Regulations. The Clerk was also instructed to obtain the necessary books and forms for complying with the Order.
The Surveyor reminded the Committee that owing to objections raised by owners of property to the Council placing ventilating shafts on buildings at convenient sites the number of shafts and columns originally contemplated and included in the estimate on which Loan No. 16 was raised had not been erected. The money for these ventilators was still in hand and he suggested that columns should now be erected in Washbrook-road, Newton-road, Hayway, Wellingborough-road, and Higham-road at its junction with High-street, and that shafts should be erected in Duck-street at its junction with High-street, Queen-street, Gordon-street, Midland-road, Wellingborough-road, and Portland-road at convenient sites, subject to the approval of the owners of the several properties on which it is intended to fix them.
The Committee approved and resolved to recommend the Council to instruct the Surveyor to carry out the necessary work.
The Chairman read correspondence which had taken place between Mrs. Twelftridge, the Cemetery caretaker, and himself with regard to the placing of a permanent wreath in the cemetery of a size exceeding that allowed by the Council’s regulations. The Committee, whilst expressing deep regret at any inconvenience or disappointment suffered by Mrs. Twelftridge, felt unable in view of the regulations so recently made and the difficulties in enforcing them in the first instance, to recommend the Council to permit of any exception in this case, and the Clerk was instructed to reply to Mrs. Twelftridge accordingly.
The surveyor was instructed to replace the shrubs at the Cemetery that had perished during the year.
The reports were adopted.
A letter was received from the Rushden and Higham Club Union stating that 1,300 club members had signed a petition strongly protesting against the putting off of the provision of public baths for Rushden. The letter strongly urged the Council to take up this question.
The Chairman wished all the Councillors a very happy and prosperous New Year.