|The Rushden Echo, 14th & 28th January, 1921, transcribed by Gill and Jim Hollis
Rushden Urban District Council
The Unemployment Grants
Local Improvements to be Considered
|The Rushden Echo, 14th January, 1921
Wednesday, present: Councillors John Claridge, J.P., C.C. (chairman), W. Bazeley, J.P. (vice-chairman), F. Knight, J.P., C. Bates, J. Hornsby, T. Swindall, C. W. Horrell, L. Perkins, B.Sc., C. E. Bayes, and T. Wilmott, with the Clerk (Mr. G. S. Mason), the Surveyor (Mr. W. B. Madin), and the Inspector (Mr. Piper).
The Chairman wished the members a happy new year and expressed the hope that the coming twelve months would be brighter than the year now passed.
Transfer of School
The Clerk reported the receipt of a formal notice to the effect that the Northants Education Committee proposed to accept the transfer to them of the Church of England Elementary day school at Rushden.
Mr. Knight called attention to the fact that about 18 of the Council’s houses in course of erection were covered in but plastering had not been started. He thought the Council should press for the completion of the houses.
Mr. Bazeley said there were only five occupied and he was continually asked by people when they might expect to get in as their overcrowded conditions were deplorable. He agreed that the Council should press for the completion of houses nearly finished.
Mr. Hornsby and Mr. Bayes said that there was a shortage of plasterers.
Plans, &c., Committee
A meeting of the Plans, Highways, and Lighting Committee was held at the Council Buildings on Wednesday, the 22nd December, 1920, when there were present:- Messrs. J. Claridge (chairman), C. E. Bayes, W. Bazeley, C. W. Horrell, J. Spencer, T. Swindall, and T. Wilmott.
were presented for:-
Conversion Mission Hall in Court Avenue into a dwelling house for Mr. G. Hawkins, and passed, including the addition of a wash-house.
It was resolved to recommend the Council that the recent increase of wages granted to the lamp-lighters be made retrospective as from the 25th September last.
Applications were received for additional lamps to be lighted in Trafford-road, Co-operative-row, and Irchester-road, and it was resolved to recommend the Council to accede thereto.
The Surveyor was instructed to make arrangements for the principal streets to be cleaned of paper, &c., on Christmas morning.
The Surveyor reported that plans had been passed during the year 1920 for 129 new buildings, including 73 new houses, of which 66 were in respect of the Council’s new Housing Scheme.
Mr. Bates said it was a pity that a place of worship (that on the Court Estate) was to be done away with.
The report was adopted.
Finance and Estates Committee
A meeting of the Finance and Estates Committee was held at the Council Buildings on Wednesday, January 5th, 1921, at 10 a.m., when there were present:- Messrs. J. Claridge (chairman), W. Bazeley, J. Hornsby, F. Knight, T. Swindall, and T. Wilmott.
Surveyor’s Cash Account
The Committee examined the Surveyor’s cash account with the wages book, the expenditure shown therein being as follows:-
The Collector’s accounts were also examined, from which it appeared that he had collected the following sums since the last meeting:-
The Committee also examined the Treasurer’s accounts, from which it appeared that he had received the following sums since the last meeting:-
And that the balances on the under-mentioned accounts were as follow:-
Tradesmen’s and Other Accounts
A number of accounts amounting to £1,777 11s. 2d. were examined and passed for payment.
A circular was received from the Unemployment Grants Committee drawing attention to the announcement made by the Government that they had decided to provide a grant of three million pounds for the purpose of assisting Local Authorities to carry out at once works upon which a substantial number of unemployed could be engaged. The grants would not exceed 30 per cent. of the wages bill of additional men taken on for the work and would not be made in respect of work on roads and housing.
The Committee were unanimously of opinion that the scheme as outlined in the circular would be of no assistance in this district.
Public Works Loans
A circular was received from the Public Works Loan Board stating that all loans advanced subsequently to 1st November, 1920, would bear interest at the rate of 6½ per cent.
Post Office Telephones
The Clerk submitted a notice from the District Manager of the Post Office Telephones terminating the agreement with regard to the instrument at the Fire Station on April 1st next with a view to a new one being entered into at an increased charge.
Mr. Swindall said there were a good many people in the town who thought the Council should put into effect some sort of work to find work for the unemployed. He could assure them that the Council would have done so if they could find work of benefit to the town. The various schemes suggested at the recent meeting would probably be found on examination to be of no benefit to the unemployed.
The Chairman concurred, and added that a circular letter from Dr. Addison which he had received suggesting the adoption of short time in work under their control did not offer a solution to the problem in Rushden. They could not put the Council men on short time and any shorter time in the boot trade was unthinkable.
Mr. Perkins asked if anything could be done to level the Spencer Park and so find work for the unemployed. He would not like to play football in Spencer Park in its present state.
The Chairman thought skilled men would be needed. He agreed that it needed levelling.
Mr. Swindall suggested applying for a loan to finance the scheme.
Mr. Bates thought that the present was the best time to carry out the work.
Mr. Bazeley said that the unemployed men could be engaged on such work under skilled supervision. They might also make a bowling green on the further side of the sewer track. If they applied for a loan it might take the authorities six months to inquire into the matter. Anything needed must be done at once.
Mr. Wilmott agreed that the work could be done as it needed practically all labour and very little material. They would have to decide what the ground would be covered with when it was levelled because the bare earth would not do. He was in favour of getting on with the scheme.
Mr. Bates moved that the Recreation Ground Committee be asked to go into the matter at once.
Mr. Hornsby seconded, and it was carried unanimously.
The report was adopted.
Health and Sanitary Committee
A meeting of the Health and Sanitary Committee was held at the Council Buildings on Wednesday, the 5th January, 1921, when there were present:- Messrs. W. Bazeley (chairman), J. Claridge, F. Knight, L. Perkins, and J. Hornsby.
Health and Sanitary Reports
The report of the Medical Officer for the month of December was received.
The Sanitary Inspector reported that during the month of December 11 preliminary notices had been served calling attention to nuisances, &c., and the total of outstanding nuisances was now 75.
One ox liver, one spleen, and two pigs’ heads that had been voluntarily surrendered had been destroyed in the usual way as being unfit for human consumption.
A quantity of bedding and other articles found in infected houses had been disinfected at the depot.
The Inspector gave a detailed statement of his work during the past month.
The Inspector of Nuisances submitted a report with regard to a number of houses showing the nature of the accommodation for the deposit of refuse.
It appeared to the Committee by this report that the several houses therein referred to were without a sufficient ash-tub, ashpit, or other receptacle for the deposit of refuse, and it was resolved to report to the Council accordingly with a recommendation that notices be served upon the owners requiring them within 28 days to provide for each house a sufficient and proper receptacle.
Housing, Town Planning &c. Act
The Inspector of Nuisances submitted a special report with regard to a number of houses giving particulars in detail of the defects found to exist.
He was instructed to forward a copy of the report both to the Owner and the Agent of the properties with a request that the necessary repairs be put in hand at once.
Dairies, Cowsheds, & Milkshops Order
The quarterly report of Mr. Parks was received, from which it appeared that on the 7th, 9th, and 10th of December last, he visited 29 premises and inspected 178 cows and heifers making an individual examination of each udder.
The committee considered the report very satisfactory.
The Cemetery Registrar submitted his half-yearly report from which it appeared that there had been 58 interments during that period.
Twenty grave spaces had been purchased and four reserved for a period of 14 year.
Eight head stones had been erected, 22 sets of kerbing had been laid and five additional inscriptions had been cut on existing memorials.
The receipts had been £82/12/3 and no fees were outstanding.
The Surveyor submitted a report giving particulars of the street scavenging. The Committee very carefully considered the report and ultimately came to the conclusion that under all the circumstances a change was unnecessary at the present time.
The surveyor reported that this vehicle had again broken down. He had been in communication with the makers who had examined it and now recommended that the motors be forwarded to their works to be thoroughly overhauled and repaired.
It was resolved that the motors be detached and forwarded as suggested.
Royal Sanitary Institute
A circular letter was received from the Secretary to the Royal Sanitary Institute stating that the Annual Congress of the Institute would be held at Folkestone from the 20th to the 25th June, 1921, and inviting this Council to send representatives thereto.
No action was taken.
With reference to the absence of proper refuse receptacles, Mr. Bayes said that two ash bins were needed in many cases as there was as much put on the ground as was inside the bins when they were full.
Mr. Swindall said he had been informed that the men who were supposed to empty the bins refused to do so when the receptacles were full up unless each man who lifted the bin were given a tip. He did not think that was a proper attitude for public servants.
Mr. Bayes said that in the cases he mentioned of so much being on the ground it was all cleared on the visit of the scavengers.
Mr. Perkins asked if the staff was large enough.
The Surveyor said that the vehicle had given trouble and delayed the men.
Mr. Bates said that a man, horse, and cart could be employed every week on one lot of property alone. He moved that the Council employ that extra labour.
Mr. Knight seconded.
Mr. Claridge: That would mean another expense of £100.
Mr. Bates: This is a case of the health of the people, and the expense ought not to be considered.
The motion was carried.
On the question of passing cheques Mr. Knight suggested that the cheque due to Mr. Marriott be withheld until an assurance was given that the houses covered in were to be soon completed.
Mr. Bates objected and said that Mr. Marriott had employed more men and had got on with the work quicker than had most contractors.
It was agreed to pay the cheque.
The Ministry of Health intimated their approval of Mr. W. G. Wilmott’s tender for the lay-out of the site, and it was resolved to proceed with the work.
|The Rushden Echo, 28th January, 1921
The Municipal Housing Scheme
A special meeting of the Council was held at the Council Buildings on Wednesday last, when there were present:- Messrs. J. Claridge (chairman), W. Bazeley (vice-chairman), C. E. Bayes, J. Hornsby, F. Knight, L. Perkins, T. Swindall, and T. Wilmott.
Assisted Housing Scheme: Lay-Out Plan
The Clerk (Mr. G. S. Mason) reported that the Housing Commissioner had now finally approved the Surveyor’s estimate for the lay-out plan, comprising street and sewage works, amounting to £6,191.
It was resolved to make application for sanction to raise a loan for this amount forthwith.
The Clerk further reported that the Housing Commissioner had approved of the tender of Mr. W. G. Wilmott for part of the works for £3,115, and produced an engrossment of a contract with him in accordance with such tender. It was resolved that the common seal of the Council be affixed to the contract produced. The common seal was thereupon affixed and attested by the Chairman and the Clerk.
It was understood that the remaining works, estimated at £3,076, would be carried out by the Surveyor by direct labour.
The Parks Committee reported that, as requested at the last meeting of the Council, they had considered the question of levelling Spencer Park with a view to providing work for the unemployed. They now recommended that the football clubs be asked to give up their pitches as required for the remainder of the season, and that the Surveyor be instructed to at once commence the work of levelling the part occupied by the clubs and also to construct a footpath on the east side of the brook and to employ thereon as many of the unemployed as possible at the rate of 1/3 per hour.
The Council unanimously approved the recommendation and instructed the Surveyor accordingly.