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The Rushden Echo, 11th February, 1927, Transcribed by Gill and Jim Hollis
Rushden Urban District Council
Tenders For Thirty-Two More Houses Accepted
Private Builders Haste For Subsidy
Hospital Needed For Rushden

Wednesday, present Messrs. C. Claridge, J.P. (chairman), J. Roe, W. C. Tarry, J. Allen, F. Knight, J.P., F. Corby, T. Swindall, C. W. Horrell, C.A., L. Perkins, M.B.E., J. Spencer, J.P., G. W. Coles, J.P., W. Bazeley, J.P., and C. Bates, with the Clerk (Mr. G. S. Mason), the Surveyor (Mr. W. B. Madin), and the Sanitary Inspector (Mr. F. S. F. Piper).

Mr. J. Hornsby (vice-chairman) and Mr. A. Allebone were absent through illness.

Reports from committees were received and discussed.

Housing Committee

A meeting of the Housing Committee was held at the Council Buildings on Wednesday, Jan. 19th, 1927, when there were present: Messrs. L. Perkins (chairman), C. Claridge, A. Allebone, J. Allen, W. Bazeley, F. Corby, J. Spencer, and T. Wilmott.

Rent Arrears

The Collector submitted a list of the rent arrears up to the 17th inst., from which it appeared that for the most part the arrears were being gradually reduced. In one case, however, it was resolved to instruct the Clerk to at once commence proceedings for possession.

Housing, etc., Act, 1921

The Surveyor was instructed to advertise for tenders for the 32 houses of the parlour type proposed to be erected on the remaining frontage of Irchester-road, and submit same to a special meeting of the committee to be held at 6.30 p.m. on Wednesday, the 9th prox.

Irchester-Road Site

It was resolved to recommend the Council to instruct the Surveyor to invite tenders for the construction of the roads on the first part of this estate.

Housing, etc., Act, 1923

The Clerk submitted a letter from the Ministry of Health approving the Council’s proposal for affording financial assistance to private builders under Section 2 of this Act so far as it relates to ten additional houses. This approval was subject to the houses being commenced by March 31st and completed by Sept. 30th next, and also to the cost not exceeding £550, exclusive of the subsidy.

Housing (Revision) of Contributions) Order, 1926

A circular was also received from the Ministry of Health enclosing a copy of this Order, wherein it was stated that for houses, not subject to special conditions, completed after Oct. 1st, 1927, and before Oct. 1st, 1928, the subsidy would be reduced from £6 to £4 for 20 years. With regard to houses subject to special conditions, the subsidy would be reduced from £9 to £7 10s. for 40 years, if completed during the same period.


The question of the reduction of rents of the Council’s houses, other than those erected under the 1924 Act, referred to this committee by the Council at their last meeting, was considered and adjourned until the next meeting.

The report was adopted.

Mr. Swindall said he did not think the Council should construct a road beyond the land on which they would be able to build houses.

Mr. Perkins said that the Housing Committee had met prior to that meeting and tenders had been opened. The committee unanimously recommended the acceptance of the tender of Mr. R. Marriott of £15,288 for the 32 houses.

In reply to questions by Mr. Roe and Mr. Swindall, Mr. Perkins said that Mr. Marriott’s was not the lowest tender. One from Northampton was a little lower, less than £5 per house. Mr. Marriott had promised to get the houses done by the end of September. To allot the contract to several contractors on an average price would mean an extra cost of over £300 to the Council.

Mr. Coles asked whether it was the hope of the committee to build yet more houses, and to give contracts to other builders in the town.

Mr. Perkins said he was afraid it would be impossible to get more done before Oct. 1st, the date on which the subsidy would be passed.

Mr. Madin said that further building could not proceed on virgin land until there had been a lay-out of roads and putting in sewer.

Plans, Highways, and Lighting Committee

A meeting of the Plans, etc., Committee was held at the Council Buildings on Wednesday, Jan. 26th, 1927, when there were present:- Messrs. C. Claridge (chairman), G. W. Coles, C. W. Horrell, F. Knight, J. Spencer, T. Swindall, W. C. Tarry, and T. Wilmott.


were presented for:-

House in Newton-road for Mr. W. Hodgkins, and passed.

Motor garage off Beech-road for Mr. H. Craxford, and passed.

Motor garage in Pytchley-road for Mr. R. C…..well, and passed.

Factory Acts

An application was received from Messrs. Howes and George for a certificate that their factory in Victoria-road was provided with sufficient and proper means of escape in case of fire. The Surveyor submitted a report on the various exits, etc., and it was resolved to recommend the Council to accede thereto.

High-Street South

Attention was called to a defective pavement gutter near the Waggon and Horses Hotel, and the Clerk was instructed to communicate with the owners of the property concerned with a view to their remedying the defects.

Public Lighting

An application was received from a firm of advertising contractors for permission to use the various lamp columns and standards for advertisement. The committee could not see their way to recommend the Council to agree thereto.

Hackney Carriages

The Clerk reported that since the last meeting of the Council it had been found necessary to modify the arrangements made for the route of the Wellingborough to Raunds buses through Rushden. Certain difficulties had been encountered, and it was now suggested that these ‘buses should proceed via Church-street and High-street, with stopping-places as arranged at the last meeting. The committee approved.

The Surveyor was instructed to have fixed near the Post Office and the Independent Wesleyan Chapel notices intimating to the public that all ‘buses stopped there.

Footpath Between Queen-Street and Portland-Road

The surveyor reported that, as instructed at the last meeting, he had seen Mr. Arthur Wilmott with regard to his application for this footway to be asphalted to a width of 6ft. 6in. The estimated cost of the work was £34 towards which Mr. Wilmott promised to contribute £10.

A sub-committee consisting of the Chairman with Mr. Knight and Mr. Swindall was appointed to inspect the path and report to the next meeting.


The Depot Sub-Committee reported that they had considered the further quotation received from Mr. D. Nicholson for the purchase of a new motor-lorry, and now recommended that his tender of £750 for a 5-6 ton “Daimler-Mercedes” three-way tipping lorry, with hydraulic gears, be accepted, Mr. Nicholson to allow a sum of £200 for the old lorry and electric vehicle.

The committee considered the matter at length and ultimately resolved to recommend the Council to purchase the lorry on those terms.

The report was adopted.

On the subject of routes and stopping-places in Rushden for 'buses, Mr. Roe asked the committee to consider what he believed would be a very satisfactory new route for the Raunds ‘buses. The turn from Church-street to High-street and that from College-street to Alfred-street were very dangerous. High-street was very well served with the Kettering 'buses, and his suggestion was that the 'buses on the Raunds route use Station-road and so miss Church-street and the more crowded part of High-street.

On the recommendation to purchase a new lorry, Mr. Tarry said that the committee were not unanimous and he asked that the matter be referred back for early consideration. He believed it would be a great mistake to make the purchase. The chassis was built for a ‘bus and not for a lorry and was much heavier that the Council required. Secondly, it was not new, although it was described as being “as good as new.” It might be six or eight years old. His chief objection was on the running costs. The lorry would do about five miles per gallon of petrol, which would mean on 40 miles a day, or 7,000 a year, a cost on petrol alone of £132 a year. A modern lorry would do ten miles per gallon, a saving of £60 to £70 a year. Thus the proposed lorry would be false economy.

Mr. Allen asked how long the Council had had the present lorry and what it cost.

Mr. Madin said it was bought in July, 1919, for about £400 and came from being in service in France.

Mr. Corby said that the one he saw, that which it was proposed to buy, was absolutely new. He was told that the chassis had never been out of the place and was one of three for buses. The other two had been used for lorries.

Mr. Roe said there seemed to be some mistake. If the chassis was six or seven years old he should support Mr. Tarry.

The Chairman said he understood that the running costs would be no more than those of an ordinary lorry.

Mr. Madin said that the present one did about 4½ miles per gallon. The man who bought one of the others (used as a lorry) said it would do six miles per gallon and that he was satisfied with it.

The committee’s recommendation was adopted. Mr. Tarry voting against.

Health and Sanitary Committee

A meeting of Health and Sanitary Committee was held at the Council Buildings on Wednesday, Feb. 2nd., 1927, when there were present: Messrs. F. Corby (in the chair), C. Claridge, T. F. B. Newberry, and T. Swindall.

Health and Sanitary Reports

The report of the Medical Officer for the month of January was received.

The Sanitary Inspector reported that since the last meeting 13 nuisances had been investigated and, with the outstanding nuisances, 25 had been abated.

Forty-three visits had been made to premises where food was prepared or sold, during which inspections a small quantity of beef and beef offal, to the total weight of 18lb., had been found to be unfit for human consumption and destroyed in the usual way.

A quantity of bedding and wearing apparel had been disinfected at the Depot, and a quantity destroyed at the Sewage Farm, all after cases of infectious disease.

Thirteen rooms had been disinfected after cases of infectious disease; also one of the elementary schools.

An application was received for compensation in respect of destroyed bedding, and it was resolved to recommend the Council to replace part of the bedding destroyed at a cost not exceeding £1 7s. 6d.

The Inspector gave a detailed statement of his work and inspections during the past month.

Petroleum Acts

Applications were received for the renewal of their licences to store petrol from the Rushden Engineering Company and Messrs. C. A. Hedley and A. Simpson, and from the Rushden Engineering Company in respect of their carbide of calcium licence. It was resolved to recommend the Council to accede thereto.

Applications were also received from Mr. R. Marriott to store 500 gallons of petrol in an underground store with standard pump attached and 100 gallons in two-gallon cans to premises at the rear of Messrs. Woolworth and from Mr. A. Peck to store 1,500 gallons of petrol in an underground tank with standard pump attached at his new premises in Washbrook-road. It was resolved to recommend the Council to accede to the applications subject to the respective stores being constructed to the satisfaction of the Inspector.

Rats and Mice (Destruction) Act

The Inspector also reported that during the past three months the men engaged by the Council had accounted for 307 rats on the Council and other properties.

House Refuse

The Surveyor reported that during the year ended Dec. 31st last, 3,468 loads of refuse and 581 loads of broken crockery, tins, etc., had been collected.

Isolation Hospital

A letter was received from the Thrapston Rural District Council inquiring whether this Council are prepared to enter into an agreement for the reception of infectious cases, other than smallpox, from that district, and, if so, upon what terms.

The Clerk was instructed to reply that the Council had no accommodation available.


The Clerk submitted a memorial from the occupiers of Albion-place calling attention to the state of this road and requesting that the work of repair might be commenced as speedily as possible. It was pointed out that the Council already had the matter in hand, and the Clerk was instructed to reply that the work would be proceeded with as soon as possible.

Street Vendors

The attention of the Council was called by the Rushden Chamber of Trade to the number of complaints received regarding flower-sellers who took up positions on Friday afternoons near the Coffee Tavern.

The Clerk was instructed to reply that the matter was one that did not come within the province of the Council.

The report was adopted.

Baths and Parks Committee

A meeting of the Baths and Parks Committee was held at the Council Building on Wednesday, Feb. 2nd 1927, when there were present: Dr. D. G. Greenfield (chairman) and Messrs. C. Claridge, F. Knight, J. Roe, and J. Spencer.

The Chairman reported that, as arranged, he, with the Chairman of the Council, the Clerk, and the Surveyor, attended at the Ministry of Health on Thursday, the 27th ult.

The principal points discussed were with regard to slipper baths and the position of the site. The deputation promised to supply the Ministry with information as to the number of slipper and other fixed baths in the town, and the Surveyor was requested to obtain particulars, which the Clerk would forward to the Ministry when received.

With regard to the site, the committee were not disposed to consider an alternative one, and it was resolved to adhere to that in Station-road and to pay out of current rate the difference between the sum agreed on with the vendor and the valuation of the District Valuer.

The Clerk was instructed to inform the Ministry as to the committee’s decision when sending the particulars as to slipper baths. It was understood that it would be necessary for the Surveyor to visit the Ministry again and discuss various matters with regard to construction.

Park-Keeper’s House

A letter was submitted from Mr. W. G. Wilmott offering to sell to the Council the house in Washbrook-road now occupied by the park-keeper for £350.

It was pointed out that the house was very conveniently situated for the purpose, and it was resolved to recommend the Council to make the purchase at the price named.

The report was adopted.

In reply to Mr. Perkins, it was stated that to try to include slipper baths now might perhaps block the whole scheme.

Mr. Coles asked whether the bath could be used in the coming summer.

The Chairman said that the scheme was still awaiting the final approval of the Ministry, so that for the time being work could not be begun.

Mr. Knight said he should oppose the scheme as he always had done, because he contended that they ought to have been indoor baths. He was not if favour of open-air baths at all.

Messrs. Knight, Corby, and Tarry voted against the minute, all the other members voting in favour.

Finance and Estates Committee

National Institute for The Blind

A letter was received from the secretary to this Institute asking permission to hold a street collection in Rushden during the coming summer, and it was resolved to recommend the Council to agree thereto.

Spencer Park Caretaker’s House

The committee had under consideration a recommendation from the Baths and Parks Committee with regard to the purchase of the park-keeper’s house for £350, and it was resolved to recommend the Council to accede thereto.

The report was adopted.

Bigger Rushden Hospital Needed

A letter being read informing the Council of a new constitution to govern Rushden Cottage Hospital (medical, Friendly Society, boot manufacturers, and other interests to be represented).

Mr. Coles said that the time would come when Rushden would need an adequate hospital of their own. Rushden people had to wait three or four months for a bed at Northampton Hospital. The Rushden Cottage Hospital, having, he understood, two beds, was totally inadequate to requirements. He hoped that the new constitution for governing the Cottage Hospital would not preclude the possibility of a large hospital.

The Clerk said it would not, and that the governing body would be empowered to take action on those lines if they chose.

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