|Rushden Echo, 16th June, 1933, transcribed by Gill Hollis
Rushden Urban District Council
Highway Dangers Again Discussed
Highway dangers in the vicinity of the Washbrook-road Triangle and at the Oakley cross-roads were discussed at the monthly meeting of the Rushden Urban District Council on Wednesday evening, when the chairman of the Highways Committee also expressed regret at the fatal accident on Tuesday in High-street South, and promised it should be considered by the Committee at their next meeting.
Mr. L. Perkins again suggested the construction of a footpath through the Triangle, but after an explanation of the position with reference to the County Council’s inquiries on the matter by Mr. A. Allebone, withdrew a notice of motion that the Council should vote on the matter at the next meeting.
The memorial received from shopkeepers of the town against the Council’s recent decision in respect of hanging shop-blinds, was endorsed by the Highways Committee, to whom the matter had been referred, and it was agreed that the Police be interviewed with a view to proceedings being taken against offenders under the Act. It was pointed out that the Council had made no bye-law themselves and that the position was regulated by Statute.
A number of gifts to the Hall Museum were acknowledged.
It was stated that in respect of the 34 Council loans subject to a six months’ redemption clause, the lenders had agreed to a reduction of interest to 4 per cent.
Definite Decision Against Shopkeepers
The members present were Messrs. J. Spencer, J.P. (in the chair), C. W. Horrell, C.A. (vice-chairman), G. W. Coles, J.P., A. Wilmott, T. Swindall, L. Perkins, M.B.E., B.Sc., J. Roe, L. Tysoe, J. Hornsby, A. Allen, F. Green, D. G. Greenfield, M.D., T. F. B. Newberry, A. Allebone, C.C., W. E. Capon, W. C. Tarry, and J. T. Richardson, with the Clerk, Mr. G. S. Mason, the Assistant Clerk, M. W. L. Beetenson, the Surveyor, Mr. J. W. Lloyd, and the Sanitary Inspector, Mr. F. S. F. Piper.
The Clerk reported that, as instructed, proceedings had been taken against the tenant of a house in Tennyson-road, for possession of his house on account of arrears of rent.
The Housing Committee again considered the list of arrears and in one case it was resolved that one week’s notice to quit be given. The Clerk was instructed, in various other cases, to inform the defaulters that unless their rent was more punctually paid their tenancies would be determined.
St. Peter’s Church
With regard to the proposed sale of land to St. Peter’s Church, Rushden, the sub-Committee appointed reported that they had met representatives of the Oakham Church Extension Board on the Irchester-road Housing Estate. One or two sites were inspected and the Board promised, after further consideration, to communicate with the Surveyor as to the most convenient site for their purpose. No communication had as yet been received.
Before presenting the report of the Highways Committee, Mr. Wilmott (chairman), said: “I am sure we all regret the deplorable accident which has occurred at the bottom of Griffith-street. I do not know all the particulars but I promise you that it shall be brought up at the next meeting of the Plans and Highways Committee.”
On the recommendation of the Plans, Highways, and Lighting Committee, plans were approved as follows:-
House in Hayway for Mrs. E. Wix; two houses in Grafton-road for Mr. W. Boddington; bungalow in Newton-road, Court Estate, for Mr. E. J. Frisby; two houses in Park-avenue for Messrs. A. Sanders, Ltd.; lock-up shop and house and shop in High-street for Mr. Hill (subject to the consent of the County Council, as to building line, being obtained); additions to shops in High-street for Mr. G. A. Saxby; shed to their factory in Oakley-road for Messrs. A. Allebone and Sons, Ltd.; store shed at the rear of their factory in Station-road for Messrs. B. Denton and Son, Ltd.; garage adjoining his house in Oval-road for Mr. Charles Thomas.
Factory and Workshops Act
The Surveyor reported that as instructed he, together with Mr. Swindall had visited and inspected the factories of Messrs. Cunnington Bros., in Park-road, and the Gordon Boot Co., in Gordon-road, with regard to the means of escape in case of fire. In their opinion sufficient and proper means of escape in case of fire were provided at each of the said factories. The Council accordingly granted certificates to Messrs. Cunnington Bros. and the Gordon Boot Co.
A letter was received from Mr. G. Waller, of “The Bungalow,” Washbrook-road, supported by 25 holders of allotments, asking that a lamp be placed at the lower entrance to the allotment field, Washbrook-road.
The Lighting Committee informed the Council, however, that the question of fixing a lamp at this point had been considered on several previous occasions with negative results, and they saw no reason for reversing those decisions.
Broadcast Relay Service
A letter was received from the Broadcast Listeners Service, Ltd., asking for permission occasionally to cross the highway with ordinary telephone wire to enable them to establish a Broadcast Relay Service in Rushden.
A letter was also received from the wireless dealers of the town protesting against the application being granted, and stating that if there was a demand for such a service in Rushden they would be prepared to submit a scheme for approval.
It was resolved to adjourn the matter for one month for further information to be obtained from neighbouring towns where it was understood such services were in operation.
Shop Window Blinds
The memorial from the shopkeepers of the town protesting against the ruling made in respect of shop window flaps and side blinds referred to the Highways Committee at their last meeting was considered.
It was pointed out that no ruling or bye-law had been made by the Council with regard to these blinds, that by Statute it was an offence for such blinds or flaps to be less than eight feet from the ground, and the Committee recommended to the Council that the Police be interviewed with a view to proceedings being taken against such of the shopkeepers who ignored the Act. - This was agreed.
The Surveyor reported that the tar boiler at present in use was very much worn and beyond repair, and he was instructed to obtain prices for a new boiler and submit this to the Finance Committee.
The Finance Committee reported that the Surveyor submitted estimates for a new tar boiler of 215 gallons capacity, and it was resolved to accept that of the Municipal Appliances Co. Ltd., at £42 10s., the lowest.
The Surveyor submitted a plan of this road at its junction with Court-avenue showing a slight road improvement on the east side by the setting back of the fence there. The total cost of the improvement, including the purchase of the necessary land, was estimated at £12, and the Council agreed that the improvement be effected.
Mr. Perkins: I am sorry there is no mention in the Highways Committee’s report of the alteration to the Triangle at the bottom of Washbrook-road. I mentioned the matter a month ago and I think it is more important than the suggested change at the top of Newton-road where very few people go. The more dangerous place should be the first one to receive attention and I hope the Committee will go into the question of making a footpath through the Triangle. The more I go by there the more I am convinced that something should be done. I merely suggest a footpath through, because people, and it is particularly dangerous for elderly people, have to walk about 40 yards to cross the road, and they may meet two or three cars which were unseen originally, whereas if there were a footpath through, the journey would be broken into two parts. It is a lot easier to left two half-stones than one heavy one, especially up a ladder, and the same would apply here. It might be the means of avoiding a serious accident.
Mr. Wilmott: The sub-Committee visited the Triangle and Mr. Perkins knows what we have done. We have cut the hedge right down so that there is no danger of not seeing traffic, and with reference to accidents, I most certainly disagree with Mr. Perkins. We had some experience of making a footpath through such a plot up High-street South and it was a God-send when it was closed. It would be creating a danger rather than saving accidents. We had a memorial asking us to alter the Triangle, and now we have had a letter thanking us for what has been done, from the same people.
Mr. Perkins: I shall give notice to move at the next meeting that we do construct a path through the Triangle, I do not ask you to make it into a playground, with hockey pitches and ice-cream stalls.
Mr. Hornsby: Is it not a matter for the County Council?
Mr. Perkins: It is our property.
The chairman: As far as constructing roads or footpaths I could not say whose responsibility it is.
Mr. Allebone: In respect to the Triangle there is no doubt that it is under the jurisdiction of the County Council. The County Surveyor received a letter from the Spencer Park Garage and he sent it on to the Surveyor to ask the opinion of our Highways Committee. A sub-Committee was appointed and they met and decided to cut the hedge all round, and, as Mr. Wilmott has said, the interested party who asked for something to be done have already expressed their thanks. In view of that letter I take it the Committee at their next meeting will deliberate and then send their suggestions to the County surveyor. I do not see what can be done till after the next meeting of the Committee and I should like to ask Mr. Perkins to withdraw his notice of motion.
Mr. Perkins: I will do that with pleasure, and meanwhile I hope the Councillors will visit the spot, especially when children are coming out of school.
Dr. Greenfield: It will always be a dangerous place. We have never given advice as to where people should cross, but Mr. Perkins might consider cautioning his children. If people crossed nearer Hayway they would not meet traffic coming from so many directions.
Mr. Wilmott agreed that the children might be cautioned and said the whole matter would be considered by the Committee.
Mr. Tarry said he was pleased to hear what Mr. Wilmott had said about the accident. He would like to ask the Plans and Highways Committee to consider the provision of signal lights at the Oakley cross-roads. It was a place which would lend itself to these lights, and there was a bad accident there some time ago. Places less important than Rushden had them and it was high time they were installed in the town.
The Parks, Baths, and Hall Committee reported that Dr. D. G. Greenfield had been appointed chairman of this Committee for the ensuing year, and that the following Emergency sub-committee had been appointed: Messrs. Greenfield, Coles, and Wilmott.
MUSUEM It was reported that the following articles had been either loaned or presented to the Museum:-
Old coin, found in wall of house (by Mr. A. Bell); case of butterflies, from Malay (Mr. Elmer); old sword (Mrs. Burgess); two photographs of shops destroyed at Cave’s fire in 1901 (Mr. Knighton), collection of sea shells, cases of wool flowers and birds’ feathers (Mrs. Peacock); pair of partridges (Mr. Percival); policeman’s lead loaded stick, as used 100 years ago (Mrs. G. Collins); parrot (Mrs. Jacques); pair Chinese shoes (Mrs. Spencer); antique work box (Mrs. Wadsworth); ostrich egg (Mr. A. Berry); a thrail (Mr. J. Church); pair of jays (Mrs. Sayer); two sword-fish blades, from India (1926) (Mrs. E. Newell); two oil paintings, one of Rushden old lodging house, and the other a rural scene, by the late Mr. F. Lovell, formerly of Rushden (Miss Lovell); brass tobacco pouch (Mr. Thompson).
It was resolved that the thanks of the Hall Committee be accorded the lenders and donors.
Four tables for the display of the various articles in the second part of the museum were now required and the Surveyor was instructed to purchase these at a cost of £4 6s.
LADIES’ROOM The Hall Committee reported that they had visited and inspected the room proposed to be reserved for ladies and authorised the Emergency sub-Committee to purchase 12 chairs for use there. The surveyor was instructed to obtain an estimate for supplying and fixing of seating accommodation in the window recess, and submit to the next meeting.
In answer to Mr. Hornsby, Dr. Greenfield said the chairs would cost 7s. or 8s. each. The Committee viewed some priced £1 or 22s. but they were extraordinarily dear.
GARDENER’S HOUSE The surveyor reported that this house was in need of interior and exterior renovation, many years having elapsed since the previous renovation. It was resolved that estimates for the work be obtained for submission to the next meeting.
GRASS KEEPING An offer of £10 was received from Mr. G. C. Townsend of High-street South, for permission to graze about three acres of the park at the south-east corner, as last year. The Council accepted the offer.
THE POND The Hall Committee stated they had inspected the pond, which they found in a very choked condition. Having regard to the very great expense that would be involved in cleaning it out they recommended that the Surveyor be instructed to drain off the water and then make arrangements for the pond to be filled up. This was agreed.
Dr. Greenfield said the pond was in a very foul and also dangerous state, because of the great depth of mud at the bottom. Anyone falling in would have great difficulty in getting out.
Mr. Perkins: It has been suggested that the mosquitos may flourish there in hot weather.
Dr. Greenfield: I think it extremely likely.
Applications were received from the Rushden Swimming Club for the use of the baths on Mondays and Tuesdays from 8 p.m. to 9 p.m.; from the Educational Dept. of the Rushden Co-operative Society for the use of Spencer Park on the 17th June for the purpose of assembling a children’s procession; and from the Northants Rover Scouts for the use of the swimming baths for their annual gala in July, all of which were granted.
Motor Mowing Machine
The Parks Committee reported that they had met at Spencer Park and witnessed a demonstration of mowers and agreed that the one most suitable for use in the Park and the Hall Grounds was a horse propelled Ransome’s Triple Gang mower with a 7 feet cut, the price of which was £99 net.
The Council agreed to purchase this machine at that price.
Dr. Greenfield said the new mower would enable them to provide a fair cricket field for boys.
Mr. Hornsby: It is a step in the right direction; it is what we have wanted for a long time.
The special sub-Committee appointed to inspect the footpath leading from Park-road to High-street South, reported that they had found it in a very bad state of repair and causing a nuisance. The Sanitary Inspector submitted an estimate of the cost of repair amounting to £11 0s. 6d., together with an apportionment of the same among the owners liable.
The Council approved the apportionments and instructed the Inspector to proceed with the work upon each of the owners paying their apportionment.
Rats and Mice Destruction Act
The Inspector reported that, as instructed at the last meeting, he had visited and inspected the premises in Shirley-road, from where a complaint had been received with regard to the prevalence of rats. He had definitely discovered the origin of the pests, and had taken the matter up with the persons concerned, and believed that the nuisance would now be obviated.
The Surveyor was instructed to obtain estimates for the renovation of the lavatories and submit to the next meeting of the Health and Sanitary Committee.
Sanitary Inspectors’ Conference
The Council authorised Mr. Piper to attend this conference, which will be held at Clacton-on-Sea, on the 4th to the 9th September this year, and that his reasonable expenses be paid.
Mr. Tysoe informed the Council that since being appointed chairman of the Health and Sanitary Committee he had visited the Sewage Farm and the two tips, and would like to congratulate the Surveyor and other officers of the Council on the splendid way the work was done.
The Finance Committee again had under consideration the question of the interest at present paid on the various Council loans.
It appeared there were 65 loans at present outstanding, of which 34 were subject to a six months’ redemption clause; of this latter number three were receiving 4½ per cent; nine were receiving 4¾ per cent, and the remainder 5 per cent. All the mortgagees had been written to with a view to the rate of interest being reduced to 4 per cent, and the lenders, who were subject to the above named redemption clause, had now agreed to accept the Council’s terms, but the others had all declined. Certain legal costs would be incurred in the preparation of new schedules, etc., to the mortgagees.
The Committee recommended the Council to agree to the reduction of the interest on these loans to 4 per cent, and to instruct the Clerk to carry out the proposals, it being understood that the decrease would take effect as and from the next payment of principal interest. This was approved.
Mr. Allebone (chairman of the Finance Committee) said he hoped later to be able to give an analysis showing the saving that would be effected.
The Clerk reported that, as instructed, he had been in communication with the mortgagees in respect of the loans on which there were small balances in the hands of the Council, asking them to accept such balances in part redemption of principal. All but one had agreed and it was resolved to draw cheques on the various loan accounts accordingly.
With regard to the balance of £262 4s. 6d., refused by the lender, it was agreed to invest this in the purchase of 3½ per cent Conversion Loan.
The Clerk reported that the expenses of the Brigade in connection with the recent fire at Mr. Harris’s property, Newton-road, amounting to £5 5s., had been duly rendered to Mr. Harris. A letter was now received from the Abstainers and General Insurance Co., Ltd., declining to pay this amount and offering £2 12s. 6d. on an ex gratia basis.
The Council agreed to accept this amount and to write off the balance as irrecoverable.
Mr. H. S. Gates
A letter was received from Mr. H. S. Gates enclosing an account of the costs paid by him in connection with the recent case in regard to his drains, and requesting the Council to reimburse him.
The Clerk was instructed to reply that the Council could admit no liability in respect of such costs.
The following report was presented by the Library Committee of their annual meeting:-
Book Selection Committee
It was resolved that the chairman, Mr. W. C. Tarry, with Messrs. Rial, Saddler, Jones, Clipson and the Revs. Stoney and Keeler be appointed the Book Selection Committee for the ensuing year.
ADDITIONAL MEMBER The number of members of the Library Committee, having been rather depleted by reason of removals from the town, it was agreed that Mr. W. A. E. Sherwood, headmaster of the South End Schools, be appointed a member of the Committee.
Mr. Perkins suggested the appointment of a lady member.
Mr. Tarry (chairman of the Library Committee): We shall be pleased to consider that.
Dr. Greenfield: As one of the vice-presidents of the local W.E.A. I should like one of their officials to be elected to the Library Committee if possible. The branch is doing useful work, with two big evening classes studying literature and other subjects, and the students have particular difficulty in getting books they require. The Committee might, when buying books, think of people in the town who are doing serious study.
Mr. Tarry said the Committee would consider the suggestions.
BOOKS ISSUED The secretary reported that the number of books issued for the year ended 31st March last, was 44,048, made up as follows:-
This was increase of 8,443 on the previous year.
ADDITIONS TO LIBRARY The secretary reported that 382 books had been added to the library during the year, as follows:-
GIFTS OF BOOKS The secretary also reported that 23 books (seven non-fiction and 16 fiction) had been presented to the library since the last meeting by Mr. Chas. Claridge, and the thanks of the Committee had been accorded him.
NEW BOOKS It was resolved to recommend the Council to authorise the Book Selection Committee to expend a sum not exceeding £50 in the purchase of new books during the current financial year.
The question of the renewal of various books was considered and it was agreed to recommend the Council that a sum of £25 be expended in renewing such books. These resolutions were approved.
The following letter was received from the Head Postmaster (Wellingborough): “Owing to the resignation of Mrs. Jacques, of the High-street South sub-Post Office, it has been decided to appoint Mrs. N. Wilson whose premises are at 48, Park-road. It is desired to move the pillar-box in Denmark-road to a site adjoining the new office in Park-road and should be glad if your Council would agree to the new position. The letter box in High-street South will be retained in its present position.” This was approved.