|The Rushden Echo, 13th January, 1922, Transcribed by Gill and Jim Hollis
Rushden Urban District Council
The Municipal Housing Scheme
The Question of Rents
| Wednesday, present Councillors W. Bazeley, J.P. (chairman), T. Swindall (vice-chairman), F. Knight, J.P., C. Bates, J. Spencer, J.P., J. Hornsby, L. Perkins, B.Sc., C. E. Bayes, and T. Willmott, with the Clerk (Mr. G. S. Mason), the Assistant Surveyor (Mr. Lloyd), and the Sanitary Inspector (Mr. Piper).
Plans, &c., Committee
A meeting of the Plans, Highways, and Lighting Committee was held at the Council Buildings on Wednesday, the 21st December, 1921, when there were present: - Messrs. W. Bazeley (chairman), T. Swindall, C. Bates, C. E. Bayes, C. W. Horrell, and T. Wilmott.
were presented for:-
Laundry and motor garage adjoining his house on the Higham-road for Mr. Arthur Cave and passed.
Coal barn at the rear of No. 52, Wellingborough-road, for Mr. Walter Wilmott and passed.
House off the Newton-road, on the Allotment Society’s Estate, for Mr. A. J. Jeffrey and passed.
An application was received from Mr. W. Sanders for permission to erect a small cycle shed at the rear of No. 275, Wellingborough-road, and acceded to.
The Committee again considered the footpaths of this street and instructed the Surveyor to prepare an estimate of the cost of repairing them with a view to the abutting owners carrying out the work voluntarily.
A memorial was received from the occupiers of the top half of Harborough-road requesting that a lamp be placed there. The Sub-Committee reported that only one lamp remained in stock and it was agreed to have same fixed near Messrs. Selwood’s factory.
A letter was received from the Ministry of Transport agreeing to contribute 25 per cent. of the cost of the proposed footpath improvements in this road. The surveyor’s estimate was £423/9/6.
It was resolved to recommend the Council to accept the offer and carry out the work provided that 25 per cent. was the usual contribution towards improvement on the second class roads.
The Surveyor was instructed to complete this road and footpaths as soon as possible.
As instructed at the last meeting the Surveyor submitted prices and particulars of the standard motor signs adopted by the Ministry of Transport.
It was resolved to recommend the Council to have fixed, one near the C. of E. Schools, one near the Hayway schools, and one each at the entrances to the town on the Higham-road, Bedford-road, and near the Oakley.
The report was adopted.
Finance and Estates Committee
A meeting of the Finance and Estates Committee was held at the Council Buildings on Wednesday, the 4th January, 1922, at 10 a.m., when there were present:- Messrs. W. Bazeley (chairman), T. Swindall, C. Bates, C. E. Bayes, Fred Knight, and T. Wilmott.
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 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 during the past month:-
And that the balances were as follows:-
Tradesmen’s and Other Accounts
A number of accounts amounting to £1010/1/8 were examined and passed for payment.
The Clerk reported that under the Audit Stamp Duty (Local Authorities) Order, 1921, dated 14th December, 1921, made by the Treasury under Sec. 61(1) of the Finance Act, 1921, the Stamp duty payable by this Council for future audits would be increased 150 per cent.
A letter was received from the Local Authorities Non Trading Services (Manual Workers) Provincial Council stating that owing to the fall in the cost of living a further reduction of 1d. per hour in the wages of manual workers was now recommended. A reduction of 1d.per hour had been recommended in July last which however the Council had not acted upon.
It was resolved to recommend the Council to give notice to all their able-bodied employees that a reduction of 1d. per hour in their wages would take place as from the 13th instant.
Mr. J. Hornsby asked whether the salaries of the officials of the Council had been considered, or would they be considered.
The Chairman said they had not and they did not come under notice at present. It was open to any member to raise the question if he believed that the officials were underpaid or overpaid. He understood that when the salaries of the officials were last advanced it was to be permanent.
The Clerk said that was understood to be so and that the salaries were not raised to the scale of the Provincial Council.
Mr. Spencer said that the Finance Committee should consider the question. The manual works would otherwise think they were the only people to suffer.
Mr. Wilmott: I think we can agree to that. There were bonuses added to the salaries which could be considered. The manual workers’ wages were put up in accordance with the Provincial Council’s scale, but as we were late putting them up we have delayed reducing them.
Mr. Hornsby said that if the cost of living had come down to the employees it had to the staff who were able to buy from the same shops. He did not say that the staff were overpaid or underpaid, but contended that their salaries should be reviewed.
On the motion of Mr. Hornsby, seconded by Mr. Spencer, the Finance Committee were asked to review the salaries before the end of the financial year.
The Finance Committee’s report was then adopted.
Health and Sanitary Committee
A meeting of the Health and Sanitary Committee was held at the Council Buildings on Wednesday the 4th January, 1922, when there were present:- Messrs. T. Swindall (chairman), W. Bazeley, J. Hornsby, F. Knight, and L. Perkins.
Health and Sanitary Reports
The report of the Acting Medical Officer of Health for the month of December was received.
The Sanitary Inspector reported that since the last meeting 15 preliminary and three statutory notices had been served calling attention to nuisances, &c., and the total number now outstanding was 64.
A quantity of meat to the weight of 1cwt. 0qrs. 22lbs. which had been voluntarily surrendered was found to be unfit for human consumption and destroyed in the usual way.
Fifteen articles of bedding, &c. had been disinfected at the depot, three rooms had also been disinfected, two being after cases of consumption and one after erysipelas.
The Inspector gave a detailed statement of his work during the past month.
Applications were received for the renewal of their Slaughterhouse licences from Messrs. E. Warren, E. Hollis, J. Knight & Son, and the Industrial Co-op. Society, and it was resolved to recommend the Council to accede thereto.
A number of applications were also received for renewals of Petrol and Carbide of Calcium Licences and it was resolved to recommend the Council that they be granted subject to the stores being to the satisfaction of the Inspector.
The half-yearly report of the Cemetery Registrar was received from which it appeared that during the 6 months ended 31st December last there had been 74 interments, 23 grave spaces had been purchased and one reserved for a period of 14 years. The receipts amounted to £75/17/3 and no fees were outstanding.
The Committee considered the report very satisfactory.
Factory & Workshop Acts
An application was received from the Steadfast Boot Co. Ltd. for a Certificate that their factory in Newton-road was provided with proper and sufficient means of escape in case of fire.
The Surveyor submitted a report from which it appeared that he had inspected the premises and found that from the first floor there were two exits with concrete staircases, one leading to the street and the other very nearly so. From the first floor there was a concrete staircase to the room above which would be used in case of fire. In his opinion reasonable means of escape in case of fire were provided.
It was resolved to recommend the Council to grant the Certificate.
The report was adopted.
The Clerk read a letter from the Ministry of Health stating that the Ministry had carefully considered the initial rents suggested to be charged for the new municipal houses, having regard to Schedule B of the Local Authorities House Scheme. They considered that the charge of 8/6 for Class B, and 9/6 for Class B4 should be made exclusive of rates, water charges, &c.
The Clerk said that the rents were at present respectively 7/11 and 8/9½, or inclusive 12/1 and 13/2, consequently increases required by the Ministry were 7d. and 8½d. per week. Of the 90 houses the Council’s rent had been agreed to by the Ministry of 66, and the houses affected (24) were of the better type, so that the workers had got the benefit of the lowest possible attainable rents.
After a further statement made by the Clerk it was agreed to ask the Ministry to meet the Council half-way, allowing the gross charges to be respectively not more than 12/4 and 13/6, instead of 12/8 and 13/10½, calling special attention to the drop in wages in the local industry.
The Chairman read a letter he had received from the National Savings Association asking the Council to promote local investment.
The Clerk said that in the course of his duties he found out that Rushden people were very thrifty as between 3,000 and 4,000 certificates were taken out last month, and there had been an average monthly investment of well over 2,000 certificates in the town. It was doubtful if the Council could do anything to improve on that. (Hear, hear.)
Mr. Perkins said that quite a considerable amount of money was invested by the school children in certificates. It was encouraged not altogether to try and get the children to save big sums of money as to form in them the habit of thrift. (Hear, hear.)
On the suggestion of Mr. Knight it was agreed not to take any public action during the present depression.
On the proposition of Mr. Swindall, seconded by Mr. Wilmott, the Council unanimously agreed to offer to Dr. Muriset the appointment of Medical Officer of Health for Rushden at an annual salary of £75.