|The Rushden Echo and Argus, 14th February, 1947, transcribed by Gill and Jim Hollis
Rushden Urban District Council
Housing Committee Wins Battle
| Opinion on the garage question showed a marked change at Rushden Council’s meeting on Wednesday, and enabled the Housing Committee to win the battle after its previous rebuff.
Then the opposition claimed that it had been rushed, and the lady chairman, Mrs. O. A. H. Muxlow, had to stand up to lively protests.
Reporting on the question of a garage at 113, Irchester-road, which was referred back to them last month, the Housing Committee stated that a petition had been received from 11 tenants in The Crescent protesting against the proposed garage, and suggesting that other applications would be made if the present one was granted.
The committee, sticking to its previous decision, recommended that the application be refused.
Counc. A. F. Weale, in presenting the report, said the committee were more united than before after going fully into the facts of the case, and passed their resolution with only one dissentient.
The application for a garage was first made in 1938, and the Housing Committee and full Council turned it down because they received a letter of protest from Crescent residents.
In Good Numbers
Mr. Weale said he wanted to inform the Council that letters had recently been received by him “in good numbers.” He would not read them, because he did not wish to engender too much heat, notwithstanding the climatic conditions.
The first was from Crescent tenants who wanted the front of their houses kept private. Some of the tenants were prepared to change their houses with any councillor who thought the locality would be as comfortable with garages in front as it was at the present time.
Then the writers said there were three other Irchester-road tenants who wanted garages, and would apply if the present application succeeded.
The chief point was that of children playing in the road, and then there was the general nuisance of cars “cranking up and so on.” There were other letters, all strong.
That evening he had received a letter from four residents of The Crescent, 12 of Irchester-road, six of East-crescent, five of West-crescent, and one of Tennyson-road saying they had no objection to a garage being put up.
While it was well that people should express their opinion and keep in contact with the Council, he could hardly see how the Council could take a census of half the town for their guidance. If there was anyone to be considered it was the people who lived in The Crescent. They, and they alone, were the judges of whether they wanted garages in front of their houses or not.
Immediately after Mr. Weale’s speech, the Chairman asked for voting on the report, which was adopted by ten votes to six, hands being counted and the figures announced.
The rest of this article is on the fold of the page and too many words are missing to make sense of it. However, an argument followed this decision with Coun. Sawford objecting to the way the vote had been taken, but I don’t think the decision was changed.
Elsewhere in the same paper:
Comment on New Repair Limit
Following the decisions of the recent housing conference at Kettering, Rushden Urban Council last night agreed to limit building licences to urgent work and so endeavour to keep within the quota.
Licences issued in December covered seven factory, three business and two dairy extensions, a garage, and several maintenance jobs the estimated value being £1,485.
Coun.Weale said the Council’s monthly quota had been reduced from £2,600 to £1,300.
“This is the instruction of the Socialist Government,” he added, “so we can all be happy. We have had our Liberal fling, and now the Socialist policy will be put into operation.”
Last year, according to the report of the Housing Manager (Mr. H. C. Allen), there were 230 applications for Council house tenancies. The total number was now 600, but it was thought that some of these would not be renewed.
During the year the Council let 50 “prefabs,” and accommodated nine applicants as a result of casual vacancies.
Reporting on a special meeting held by the Housing Committee on Wednesday evening, Coun.Weale said Mr. R. Marriott’s tender for 30 houses on the Higham-road site was about £70 per house more than the Government would approve. The plans had been amended to effect economies of about £45 per house.
It was agreed to accept the amended tender, subject to Government approval, and apply for a loan of £37,250.
A letter from the Trusteel Corporation said that three firms were asked to tender for the erection of 66 permanent prefabs, but only Messrs. M. M. Drabble did so. The price was £81,656. The Council accepted this tender, subject to the Ministry’s approval, and applied for a loan.
Fifteen births and 14 deaths were reported by Dr. Reid. Illness included two cases of scarlet fever, two of erysipelas, two of pneumonia and two of tuberculosis.
When non-compulsory disinfection is carried out by the Council’s staff, it was decided to charge 12s. per load of bedding and 2s. 6d. per room, with a minimum charge of 5s.
Building plans included: Temporary store (Nissen hut) in Park-road, Northamptonshire Printing and Publishing Co.; additions to abattoir in Bedford-road, Rushden Co-operative Society; covered way between sheds, Kimbolton-road, Messrs. Harris Bros.; house and shop, Morris-avenue, G. B. Lancaster; house, St. Mary’s-avenue, Mr. J. S. Bayes; garage, Woodland-road, Mr. L. S. A. Cherry; garage and workshop, 118 Wellingborough-road, Mr. L. J. Sykes; garage, 103 Irchester-road, Mr. R. Adams; two pairs of houses off Wymington-road, Messrs. W. H. Dilley and Sons.
Consent was given to the erection of a water tower in Bedford-road under the Higham Ferrers and Rushden Water Board’s extension scheme.
An order enabling College-street parking place to be used at all hours was sealed, no objections having been received.
“Final recommendations” on High-street traffic control were again deferred by the Highways Committee.
A request for street lamps in Harvey-road and the unnamed adjoining road was referred to the Lighting Sub-Committee.
Coun. J. T. Richardson was re-appointed as the Council’s representative on the Tuberculosis After-Care Committee.
An advance of £450 was made to an applicant under the Small Dwellings Acquisition Acts.
The Council’s manual employees are to have their Easter holiday on the Monday and Tuesday instead of Good Friday and Easter Monday.
Mr. T. E. Harrison, the road foreman, received a new designation as Highway and Works Superintendent, with appropriate salary grading.
Members in attendance were:-Couns. Mrs. O. A. H. Muxlow (Chairman), A. H. Bailey (vice-chairman), F. E. Brown, J. Roe, A. A. Allebone, F. Green, J. Allen, W. E. Capon, R. E. B. Sargent, A. F. Weale, G. Knight, J. H. J. Paragreen, H. Waring, W. J. Sawford, E. A. Sugars, J. T. Richardson, and S. A. Lawrence.
They All Enjoyed a Smoke
Besides producing animated debates on garages and banking, Rushden Urban Council’s meeting on Wednesday broke three records.
It was attended by 15 members of the public, including Toc H men, to whom a welcome was given from the chair.
It lasted from 7.30 to 9.5.
Members enjoyed a smoke.
“May we smoke?” asked Coun. A. A. Allebone. “It is nine o’clock.”
The Chairman (Mrs. Muxlow): “It is an unwritten rule at committee meetings that we can smoke at 9, so I think the concession can be extended to the full Council.”
Five minutes later the business ended, and Mrs. Muxlow observed: “I think the chairman may smoke now,” which she did.
Rushden’s Civic Café Continues
Rushden’s British Restaurant is to continue as a civic enterprise, and, according to statements made at the Urban Council’s meeting on Wednesday, has a good prospect of paying its way.
A long report on British Restaurant policy as it is affected by the Government’s termination of the present financial arrangements after March 31st, was submitted by the Finance Committee.
The committee thought that on the basis of recent trading results, the restaurant should prove to be self-supporting after allowing for establishment charges and the liquidation of capital charges (£1,050) over a reasonable period.
An average of 230 meals a day were served during the last three months, and the committee felt that the service met a public demand and should continue.
The Council decided to continue the restaurant as a civic service, subject to the necessary powers being conferred by Parliament.
The question of extending the range of catering has been deferred by the Finance Committee for a month.
Coun. S. A. Lawrence asked whether, in the event of the restaurant not proving self-supporting the committee had any policy in mind.
Coun. Capon said they never considered this because the restaurant had always paid. They hoped to increase the service given because the restaurant would in a sense belong to the town.
In answer to Coun. W. J. Sawford, the Clerk (Mr. A. G. Crowdy) said the premises were last year requisitioned under the Emergency Act for a period of five years.
Coun. Allen complained strongly because Hall-avenue, a private road waiting to be taken over by the Council, had not been gritted during the severe weather.
The people who lived there, he said, were paying rates just as others did, and the road, which was used freely by traffic, would have been taken over long ago if the necessary works could have been undertaken.
Though unable to answer the point raised, Coun. W. J. Sawford took the opportunity of praising the Surveyor and Mr. T. E. Harrison for the splendid way they had looked after the town. The traffic, he said, could get about far better than in any other town in the district.
Coun. A. F. Weale said he had been told by travellers that the main streets of Rushden were the clearest of any for 30 or 40 miles around.
The Surveyor (Mr. J. W. Lloyd) said it was unusual for the Council to grit the unadopted roads, but if it was the members’ wish he would do so.