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The Rushden Echo, 11th July, 1913, transcribed by Gill Hollis
Rushden Urban District Council
The Proposed Technical Institute for Boot and Shoe Manufacture

The Health of the Town

Disinfection of Schools

Wednesday, present Councillors C. Bates, J.P. (in the chair), J. S. Clipson (vice-chairman), W. Bazeley, J. Spencer, L. Perkins, B.Sc., F. Knight, J.P., T. Swindall, J. Claridge, J.P., C.C., T. Wilmott, J. Hyde, Ven. A. Kitchin, and G. H. Skinner, with the Clerk (Mr. G. S. Mason), the Surveyor (Mr. W. B. Madin), and the Sanitary Inspector (Mr. F. J. Allen).

Technical Boot Factory

A meeting of the special committee authorised by the Council at their last meeting to deal with the letter received from the Secretary of the Northants Education Committee with reference to the proposed establishment of a Central Institute in which instructions could be given in the principles of Boot and Shoe Manufacture, was held at the Council Buildings on Wednesday, the 25th June, 1913, when there were present:- Messrs. F. Knight, J. Hyde, J. Claridge, L. Perkins, and J. Spencer.

Mr. Knight was unanimously appointed chairman of the Committee.

A letter was received from the local branch of the Shoe Trades Foremen’s Provident Society, offering the co-operation of the members of that Society in the consideration of the question referred to this Committee. It was resolved to accept the offer and to invite representatives to attend a further meeting of the Committee next week.

A further meeting of the Committee was held at the Council Buildings on Tuesday, the 1st July, 1913, when there were present :- Messrs. F. Knight (chairman), J. Claridge, J. Hyde, L. Perkins, and J. Spencer, and also Messrs. C. H. Fletcher and J. Tompkins, representing the local branch of the Shoe Trade Foremen’s Provident Society, Messrs. G. H. Groome, C. W. Horrell, W. B. Sanders, and W. C. Cattell, representing the local Boot and Shoe Manufacturers’ Association, and Mr. Charles Cross, a member of the County Council.

The Chairman read the letter from the Secretary to the Northamptonshire Education Committee intimating to the Council that, subject to certain conditions as to finance, the County Council had approved a proposal of the Education Committee to establish a Central Institute in which advanced instruction would be given in the principles of boot and shoe manufacture, including machine processes. Attention was particularly called to the fact that the decision of the County Council limited the Education Committee to the establishment of one institute of this character, and one only. The letter went on to say that the Education Committee had referred the question of the place at which it would be most convenient that the Institute should be set up, to a special Sub-committee and had instructed that Sub-committee to give to those interested upon this point an opportunity of expressing their views, either in writing or by deputation. This Council were invited, in common with the Councils of all Boroughs and Urban Districts within the area of boot and shoe manufacture in the county, to make such representations as they might desire on the special point of the situation of the proposed Institute. The letter stated that arrangements were also being made to obtain the views of boot and shoe manufacturers and of the students attached to the Northamptonshire Boot and Shoe Students’ Association.

The Chairman also stated that this Council at a meeting held on the 11th September, 1912, passed the following resolution, viz., “That representations be made to the County Education Committee that in the event of their deciding to erect and equip a Boot Factory in the County for Technical Instruction it is in the opinion of this Council desirable, if any really useful results are to be obtained, that two of such Institutions should be provided, one in each of the main centres of the trade, viz., at Kettering and Rushden, thus giving the fullest opportunities for all persons engaged in the trade to make use of the instruction to be afforded.”

Having given further careful consideration to the matter it was unanimously resolved that the Council see no reason to alter the opinion deliberately arrived at last year as expressed in the foregoing resolution, and strongly urge upon the Education Committee that if only one Institute is to be provided it shall be either at Rushden or Kettering.

It was also resolved that a deputation, consisting of the Chairman and Clerk, be appointed to attend before the Sub-Committee of the Education Committee on Thursday, the 10th July, and place this Council’s views before them.

The report was adopted.

Recreation Ground Committee

A meeting of the Recreation Ground Committee was held at the Council Buildings on Wednesday, the 25th June, 1913, when there were present :- Messrs. F. Knight (chairman), C. Bates, J. S. Clipson, J. Claridge, L. Perkins, J. Spencer, and T. Wilmott.

Temperance Band

A letter was received from the Secretary accepting the offer of the Council to play in the Council Field during the month of June on Wednesday evenings instead of playing on the Green, and expressing the hope that the Council would put down a temporary bandstand in the Recreation Ground at an early date.

School Treat

An application was received from Father O’Gorman for the use of the ground for the purpose of the Roman Catholic Sunday school treat on the 17th July next.

The Clerk was instructed to reply that the Council would have no objection to his using the ground for that purpose, but could not guarantee the exclusive use of any portion of the ground.

Argyle Football Club

An application was also received from the Argyle F.C. for the use of a portion of the ground for football during the coming season. The ground being still under the course of construction, the Committee could not at present allot any particular portion to individual clubs and the Clerk was instructed to reply accordingly.

Mr. Knight said the committee thought it would be better to consider the applications as a whole rather than consider them piecemeal while the ground was in course of construction.

Mr. Perkins and Mr. Bazeley hoped the work would be completed at as early a date as possible, the latter asking if a date could be fixed for making the applications by clubs.

Mr. Knight thought the question might be left to the committee, who would do all they could to expedite matters.

In answer to Mr. Bazeley, Mr. Knight said the application regarding a band stand had not been considered. There was no chance of it being done this summer.

The report was adopted.

Municipal Houses

Mr. Spencer asked if the plans for the municipal houses were now ready.

The Surveyor said he had about five different sketches in sketch form, and he hoped to put something definite before them at the next meeting of the Council.

The Clerk : We cannot begin to work until we have the sanction of the Local Government Board.

Plans, etc., Committee

A meeting of the Plans, Highways, and Lighting Committee was held at the Council Buildings on Wednesday, the 25th June, 1913, when there were present:- Messrs. C. Bates (chairman), J. S. Clipson, J. Claridge, J. Hyde, F. Knight, J. Spencer, and T. Wilmott.

Plans

were presented by:-

Messrs. Arthur Wilmott and Son for shoe factory in Portland-road and passed.

Mr. T. Swindall for a house in Oakley-road, and passed.

Messrs. Knight and Lawrence for an open shed near their factory in Manton-road, and no exception taken provided that corrugated iron be substituted for wood at the end near Manton-road.

The Rushden Urban District Council for cottage on the Kimbolton-road in connection with the sewage works, and passed.

Permission was given to Mr. Ralph Walker to erect a cycle house at the rear of No. 94, Wellingborough-road.

Side Street Leading Out of Rectory-Road

The Chairman reported that the Committee had met the owners on the site, and all those on the Queen-street side strongly objected to bear their share of the apportioned expenses on the ground that the road when made was of little use to their property, and moreover that they would have no legal right to use it. Messrs. Claridge and Sons, Ltd., also objected on the grounds that the cost was excessive, but it was understood that they would be prepared to contribute £10 towards making up the road on their side of the street as far as the trolleys went for the purpose of loading and unloading goods at their factory.

The Committee resolved to recommend the Council not to proceed further with the matter if Messrs. Claridge and Sons would confirm this arrangement.

Brook Culvert, Bedford-Road End

The Surveyor reported that some repairs were urgently required to this culvert, and was instructed to carry out the necessary works.

Allen-Road

The Surveyor submitted to the Committee (a) a Specification of the works intended to be carried out in this street under the Private Street Works Act, 1892, with plans and sections, (b) an estimate of the probable expenses of the works, and (c) a provisional apportionment of the estimated expenses upon the premises liable to be charged therewith under the Act.

Whereupon it was resolved that the specification of the said works, and also the plans and sections, estimates and provisional apportionment relating to the works, be recommended to the Council for approval.

Surface Tarring

The Surveyor reported that the surface tarring on the district roads was now practically complete, the total cost amounted to about £98. This was in excess of the estimate, but he contemplated that there would be an equal saving on other works of repair in connection with the roads.

North-Street Sewer

The Surveyor reported a blockage in this sewer owing to the deposits from the waste water from the Gas Co.’s sulphate of ammonia plant, which at present had been remedied so far as North-street was concerned. It would be necessary, however, that the Gas Co. should cease to put this water into the sewers before the new sewage works were completed.

Post Office Telegraphs

An application was received from the Post-master General for the consent of the Council to the laying and maintenance of an under-ground telegraphic line along Newton-road from the corner of Park-road to the pole in the passage opposite the Athletic Institute, and acceded to.

A letter was also received stating that it was generally recognised as reasonable that road authorities should delegate power to one of their officers to deal with these applications, as if consent was not received within 21 days the Postmaster General would be entitled to apply to the Courts for such consent. The Clerk was instructed to give the necessary consent to future applications.

The report was adopted.

Finance and Estates Committee

A meeting of the Finance and Estates Committee was held at the Council Buildings on Tuesday, the 1st July, 1913, at 10 a.m., when there were present:- Messrs. C. Bates (chairman), J. S. Clipson, J. Claridge, F. Knight, T. Swindall, and Ven. A. Kitchin.

Surveyor’s Cash Account

The Committee examined the Surveyor’s cash account with the wages books, the expenditure shown therein being as follows:-


£

s

d

Week ending 5th June, 1913

40

3

Week ending 12th June, 1913

38

10

 4

Week ending 19th June, 1913

37

12

10

Week ending 26th June, 1913

39

12

 8

Week ending 26th June, 1913…… 39 12 8


Collector’s Accounts

The Committee examined the Collector’s accounts, from which it appeared that the following sums had been collected since the last meeting:-


£

s

d

General District Rate

1461

14

0

Fittings

14

0

Green Tolls

10

10

Burial Fees, etc

14

15

6

Burial Fees, etc…… 14 15 6

Treasurer’s Accounts

The Treasurer’s accounts were also examined from which it appeared that he had received the following sums since the last meeting:-


£

s

d

Collector, District rate

1461

14

0

Collector, Fittings

14

0

Collector, Green tolls

10

10

Collector, Cemetery fees

14

15

6

Free Library, fees, fines, etc

1

8

10

Postmaster General, rates re Telephone Poles

8

1

0

Total

147

8

2

Total 147 8 2

And that the following balances were in hand:-


£

s

d

General Account

1254

16

7

Loan Account No. 16

255

10

0

Loan Account No. 19

387

17

6

Loan Account No. 23

173

4

3

Loan Account No. 24

9171

1

4

Loan Account No. 25

750

15

10

Total

11993

5

6

Total…… 11993 5 6

Tradesmen’s and Other Accounts

A number of accounts, amounting to £2,178/8/2, were examined and passed for payment.

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 2nd July, 1913, when there were present :- Messrs. J. S. Clipson (chairman), C. Bates, W. Bazeley, L. Perkins, G. H. Skinner, and the Ven. A. Kitchin.

Health and Sanitary Reports

The Sanitary Inspector reported that during the past month six cases of infectious disease had been notified, viz., two of scarlet fever, one of diphtheria, one of erysipelas, and two of tuberculosis.

The Inspector also reported that during the month of June, 31 preliminary notices had been issued calling attention to nuisances, etc., which for the most part were receiving attention.

A book belonging to the Free Library had been discovered in a house where infectious disease existed, and destroyed. It was resolved to recommend the Council to replace the book.

Attention was called to the obstruction of the footpaths in the High-street, caused by tradesmen displaying their goods thereon. The Clerk was instructed to communicate with the Police with a view to proceedings being taken against the offenders.

The Inspector also reported a nuisance at Messrs. Collins and Co.’s factory, caused by the accumulation of a quantity of leather scraps there, infected with vermin. He was instructed to interview the owners thereon, and if the nuisance be not abated by Wednesday next it was resolved to recommend the Council to serve a notice on them requiring the abatement forthwith.

The attention of the Committee was also called to the erection of a barbed wire fence on land adjoining the public footpath to Wymington, constituting a nuisance to the highway. The Clerk was instructed to write to the occupier of the land requiring him to abate the nuisance by the 9th August next.

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

Dairies, Cowsheds and Milkshops Order

The quarterly report of Mr. Bainbridge was received, from which it appeared that on the 9th, 10th, and 11th June, 1913, he had visited 28 premises belonging to 26 cowkeepers and inspected 225 milk cows and heifers making special examination of their udders and throats. The Committee considered the report very satisfactory.

Public Elementary Schools

A letter was received from the County Education Committee with reference to the periodical disinfecting of the schools and requesting that the Urban District Council would see their way to re-consider the policy of frequent disinfection and be content with the precautions which are taken by the School Authorities to keep them properly clean and sanitary. The letter stated that a record had been kept of the cases of infectious illness which had been traced amongst school children, and the Education Committee were advised by their School Medical Officer that the number of such cases during the past twelve months had not been so great as to justify the contention that they are in the main traceable to the schools.

The Committee expressed keen disappointment at the letter, as they were convinced that the periodical disinfection of the schools had tended very largely to the decrease of infectious disease amongst the children, and considered their policy of “Prevention being better than cure” the proper one.

The matter was referred to the Medical Officer of Health for consideration.

Sale of Grass

The Surveyor reported that the sale of grass took place on the 9th June last, and realised as follows:-


£

s

d

Sewage Farm

15

10

0

Recreation Ground

9

2

6

Cemetery

6

0

0

Hospital

10

0

Hospital…… 10 0

Cemetery Field

The Surveyor was instructed to have printed and posted some notices warning the public against damaging the fences, trees, etc., and prohibiting the games of football and cricket therein.

It was also resolved that in future bands be not allowed to give concerts in the field without the previous sanction of the Committee.

North-Street Sewer

The Surveyor reported as to the blockage of this sewer by sediment from the waste water from the Gas Co.’s sulphate of ammonia plant, and informed the Committee that he had received a communication from the Manager of the Gas Company informing him that the Company were putting down an approved plant to deal with the matter.

The report was adopted.

……………………..

Street Widening at Rushden

The Churchyard Improvement

The Rector and The Urban Council

At the meeting of the Rushden Urban Council on Wednesday the following report was received from the

Council in Committee

A meeting of the whole Council in Committee was held at the Council Buildings on Wednesday, the 2nd July, 1913, when there were present Messrs. C. Bates (Chairman), J. S. Clipson, W. Bazeley, J. Claridge, J. Hyde, F. Knight, L. Perkins, J. Spencer, G. H. Skinner, T. Wilmott, and the Ven. A. Kitchin.

Churchyard Wall

The Committee visited and inspected the site with regard to a proposal to set back the wall opposite Church Parade about 2 ft. 6 in. at an estimated cost of £30.

*The Committee decided that they could not recommend the Council to incur this expenditure on what appeared to them to be only a small part of a much larger improvement required, but agreed to raise no objection to the Rector setting back the wall for a distance of about 30 yards.

Discussion

Referring to the paragraph marked *, Mr. Kitchin said : I think it would be possible to give a better and more accurate account of what took place last week. The report says, “The committee decided that they could not recommend the Council.” As a matter of fact, no decision of that sort was come to. Some members were in favour of it and others were not, and as there was a considerable difference of opinion no vote was taken. I think that the following would be a more accurate representation of what took place last week :- The first paragraph standing as it is, and then I should suggest that these words be substituted for the last paragraph : “After full discussion, which revealed much difference of opinion, the Rector and Churchwardens undertook to set back the wall for a distance of 30 yards, giving the Council the option of continuing the work in the direction of the Vestry Hall steps. This was agreed to.” That, I think, represents exactly the decision we came to. I move that those words be substituted for the paragraph which we have in the report of the committee.

The Chairman : It is not often that the minutes are challenged.

Mr. Knight : We have not much voice in the matter with regard to what the improvement shall be. But we ought to have some say as to what we are agreed to and what we did not take any exception to. I understand the Rector and Churchwardens are going to carry out the work for a distance of 30 yards. We considered whether the Council would not bear part of the cost of carrying it another 25ft. I understood from the suggestion of the Rector that if they only did 30 yards they would carry it on to the facing, but I see from the work as it is being carried on now that it is being set back about 2ft. I should like to know, before we carry this resolution, what is to be done with the awkward corner which will be left. If that projection or blunt corner is going to be left I maintain it would be much more dangerous to the traffic than before there was anything taken off at all. I should like to ask how they propose finishing the 30 yards.

The Rector : With regard to that I think the point is perfectly clear. It will be within the recollection of this committee that Mr. Perkins asked whether it would be possible to get 2 ft. 6 ins. off. I said I thought it would be possible, but I could not decide until the excavations were commenced, but that I should be anxious that as large a slice as possible be taken off the frontage without injuring the trees. That is what we have done. We have found we were able to take off more than we thought – 2 ft. 8 ins. to 3 ft. where the cutting has been completed, and therefore we carried it back to that level, because it was not decided at the last meeting that this Council would not do it; all that was decided was that the Rector and churchwardens should do the 30 yards. When we have carried out that portion of it we shall have expended about £18 over and above what we had undertaken to do with regard to the Church wall, and we have made what, I think, everybody without exception would agree is a very great improvement to that corner. And so, what I feel is that if it is desired that the improvement should be carried any further, it shall be done as a public improvement, much desired by the people of the town, and carried out at the public expense. I suppose that if the Council do not decide to do anything further we should suggest a slope down to the wall. That is all we should propose to do.

Mr. Bazeley : It seems to me that the Rector has misunderstood the Council in committee. I think it was agreed that the Council do nothing, but finally it was decided that they raise no objection to what the Rector and church supporters liked to do. The Council was quite willing for him to take off all he can at the Church’s expense, but not as a public improvement; and it looks to me that the Rector is trying to force the Council’s hand in trying to carry this further to the old Vestry Hall. I am as much opposed to that now as I was in committee. If the corner is left and is a nuisance and a danger, then we should have power to get that nuisance and danger altered. I do not see at all that it is going to be anything of a public improvement for the town to pay for – it would make the Council a complete laughing stock.

Mr. Knight : I am satisfied with the Rector’s explanation if they are going to batter off the corner. We cannot sanction or approve of a dangerous corner that is actually at the narrowest point.

Mr. Kitchin : I think it is rather a pity that motives should be imputed when they do not exist. I have no wish to force the hands of the Council, but it is obvious to everybody if we did finish it off and the Council had decided to carry it forward as suggested last week they would have to undo the piece we completed. They could now go straight round.

Mr. Perkins : I agree with the Rector that there was no decision arrived at – no resolution was put and carried.

The Chairman : What the committee decided was that they raise no objection at all.

Mr. Skinner : I understand that the Rector asked permission to put back the wall about 30 feet, and we gave that permission.

Mr. Wilmott : I take it that if the Rector was going on with this 30 yards, to start from where they started and die out into the other, it would not have been any improvement at all. Until the thing is carried through it will not be an improvement. I am surprised that the Council does not say “Get on with it and get it done.”

Mr. Spencer : My policy is that no public money be spent on anything unless it is a substantial public improvement. I sincerely wish the Rector, who has admitted that this is a dangerous spot, and is willing to have some part of the consecrated ground taken away, would be willing to have the whole corner taken away. Human life is more important to me than trees. I suggest that some of the trees be removed – those in front of the Church can be allowed to stand to beautify it. Perhaps it may be a little sacrifice. On the other hand, I am not prepared to sacrifice my views or hinder the great public scheme before us. As regards trees I believe in the beauty of them, and am a lover of them, and for every tree taken away I should be in favour of the town putting 12 in its place in the churchyard, at the public expense, but where they are a danger I think human life should be the first consideration. I do not think the improvement is large enough to justify public money being spent in this case.

Mr. Claridge : I think that the Rector’s resolution is far more correct as to the decision of the committee. I thought when we saw this improvement of the 30 yards that we should go on and finish the work.

Mr. Bazeley : I contend that the Clerk in his minutes is perfectly correct.

Mr. Perkins : The point is this : we did not decide anything about expenditure.

The Clerk : I think this minute would have been better if I had put it in the negative instead of in the affirmative : that is, “The committee were not able to recommend the Council, etc.”

Mr. Hyde : According to the best of my recollections, it was really left to the Council to see what they could do and how far they could remove the wall.

Mr. Kitchin’s amendment was then voted on as follows :- For, Messrs. Kitchin, Perkins, Wilmott, Skinner, and Hyde; against, Messrs. Bazeley, Spencer, Knight, and Clipson. The minute was thereupon altered.

Mr. Perkins : It may appear that I am in favour of continuing the cutting, but I merely want to give an exact statement of what took place at the meeting. I want to ask the Rector as to how the two walls shall meet, whether by an angle or a curve.

Mr. Swindall : I think the Council might let the Churchwardens do their part and then let us re-consider it.

The Chairman : I think it is just as dangerous as ever with the corner left like that.

Mr. Wilmott : I think the Council will have to see to that. If this thing wanted looking at we could see how the 30 yards would finish up. I think it was the duty of the Council to see to it before the work was so far advanced.

Mr. Spencer : I don’t think we have had public interest studied by the Rector.

Mr. Kitchin : I have no wish in any way to add to any feeling which may exist on this subject. It always seems to me in life that if you cannot get all you want it is desirable to take what you can get. I do not think that this improvement need be considered in reference to the larger improvement that some of this Council are interested in. Mr. Bazeley has said, for a considerable time now, that he is out to save the lives of the workers. That seems to me a very desirable thing, and should be attained at once where it is possible, and that one should not wait for some future time when possibly, perhaps not, probably, the money may be granted for the larger improvement that some members of this Council wish to carry out. At all events that time is not yet. I tried to make it quite clear last week that in doing that improvement to the west front we were obliged to carry out the improvement with regard to the wall. It was in a very bad state, and after having consulted our architect we came to the conclusion that it would add to the safety of that corner if the wall could be lowered and the ground slope down to it. It would give a view that did not exist before. I had always felt from the first it would be very desirable that the road should be widened, cutting away any portion of the ground which would not interfere with the trees. I made it very clear that I was only opposed to the improvement so far as it referred to the destruction of the trees. I think the opinion of the public, certainly from what I have heard, is, in spite of what Mr. Bazeley thinks about it, that it is a very considerable public improvement, and as such I think that we as representatives of the public ought to be very ready to meet a small expense of that kind. It almost comes to this, as if some members of the Council are disposed to say “If we cannot carry out the improvement in our own way we will not have it at all.” However, there being a difference of opinion last week, we decided we would carry out the improvement for the 30 yards. I am now asked how it is to be finished. I had hoped, the Rector and the churchwardens having agreed so far to spend this extra money upon that improvement, that the Council would generously have met us to night and said “We recognise the considerable improvement and we are ready to carry it on the other 30 yards and complete it.” It is evident that is not the intention of the Council. I say I do not think it is fair to ask the Church people to continue that improvement, which affects the whole town and not any one section of the town in particular. But I feel so strongly myself that the improvement is one which the town will be thankful to have that I shall complete it myself at my own expense. (Applause) I shall not carry it all round but far enough to avoid danger. (Applause)



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