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The Rushden Echo, 12th November, 1909, transcribed by Jim Hollis
Rushden Urban District Council

Workmen And Holidays - Mr. Dobbs And The Next Election

A MEETING OF THIS Council was held on Wednesday night, when there were present :- Messrs. G. H. Skinner (chairman), F. Knight (vice-chairman), J. Claridge, G. Miller, C. E. Bayes, F. Ballard, J. S. Clipson, T. Swindall, J. Paragreen, C. Bates, A. J. Dobbs, and W. Bazeley, with the Clerk (Mr. G. S. Mason), the Surveyor (Mr. W. B. Madin), and the Sanitary Inspector (Mr. W. G. F. Kingston).

Plans, Etc., Committee

A meeting of the Plans, Highways, and Lighting Committee was held at the Council Buildings on Wednesday, the 27th Oct., 1909, when there were present :- Messrs. G. H. Skinner (chairman), C. Bates, W. Bazeley, J. Claridge, G. Miller, and T. Swindall.

Plans

were presented by :-

The Co-operative Wholesale Society, Ltd., for mechanics’ shop and other additions to their factory in Portland-road and passed.

Dr. Owen for motor-house to his residence in Park-road and passed.

Messrs. Darlow and West for leather store and open shed near their factory in Gordon-street and passed subject to the sides of the store being of corrugated iron in the place of wood as shown.

Mr. P. Collins for additions to his factory in Denmark-road and passed subject to evidence as to party wall being produced and ventilation being satisfactory.

Mr. T. Swindall for additions to workshop at the rear of No. 25 Church-street, and passed.

Mr. C. Bennett for bicycle shed at the rear of No. 45 Moor-road, and no exception taken.

Mr. A. C. Ashby’s Shop

Mr. J. W. Fisher, of Wellingborough, attended the meeting and submitted a plan of behalf of Mr. Ashby for the conversion of his premises in the High-street into two shops and residences. Mr. Fisher explained at length the proposed alterations, which, however, in many respects could not be made so as to make the buildings when completed comply with the bye-laws. The Surveyor was instructed to inform Mr. Fisher that it was impossible for the committee to accept the proposals put forward and to suggest that a plan be submitted converting the premises into a lock-up shop and one shop and residence.

King’s-Road

The surveyor reported that Mr. F. Hawkes had erected a building adjoining his house in King’s-road in contravention of Section 3 of the Public Health (Building in Streets) Act, 1888.

It was resolved to recommend the Council to require Mr. Hawkes to give an undertaking to remove the shed when called upon so to do.

Elm-Street and Kilburn-Place

The Clerk submitted a letter received from Mr. Patenall with respect to the making up of these roads and asking the Council to grant himself and Mr. Groome an interview.

It was resolved to grant such request and invite them to attend the next meeting of the Committee.

Dell-Place

The Committee decided to approach the Gas Company with a view to their laying a main into Dell-place, and, provided the Company agree to lay such a main, to erect a lamp there.

Lower Portland-Road

It was resolved to recommend the Council to issue notices declaring this street a public highway repairable by the inhabitants at large.

Ambulance Corps

The minutes of another meeting of the Committee held just before the Council meeting were read by the Clerk. They showed that an application had been received for permission to erect a building as headquarters for the Ambulance Corps at some spot on the Council’s depot in Midland-road. The Committee met at the depot, but did not consider it would be a convenient site. They recommended that if the site on the opposite side of the road near the brook, would suit the Ambulance Corps, the use of the site be granted free.

The reports were adopted.

Finance And Estates Committee

A meeting of the Finance and Estates Committee was held at the Council Buildings, on Tuesday, the 2nd November, 1909, when there were present :- Messrs. F. Knight (chairman), G. H. Skinner, and W. Baseley.

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 7th Oct., 1909
31
3
0
Week ending 14th Oct., 1909
31
9
9
Week ending 21st Oct., 1909
30
17
0
Week ending 28th Oct., 1909
30
15
3

Collector’s District Rate Account

The Collector’s District Rate Account was examined from which it appeared that he had collected the following sum since the last meeting :-


£
s
d
General District Rate……
45
2
4

Cemetery Registrar’s Account

The Cemetery Registrar’s account was also examined, from which it appeared that the following sum had been received on this account since the August meeting :-


£ s d
Burial fees, etc……. 13 3 0

Collector’s Fittings Account

The Collector’s fittings account was also examined, from which it appeared that he had collected the following sums during the past month :-


£
s
d
Other roads…….
8
7
8
Farm……..
 
12
6
Street watering……
 
1
0
Total
9
1
2

Treasurer’s Accounts

The Committee also examined the Treasurer’s accounts from which it appeared that the following sums had been paid to him on the following accounts since the last meeting :-


£
s
d
Collector, District rates
45
2
4
Free Library, fees, fines, etc.
1
2
7
Water Board, re loans
459
14
4
County Council, Main road, footpaths
125
0
0
County Council, High-street South culvert
4
0
0
County Council, High-street South S.W. drain
11
7
5
Collector, Fittings
9
1
2
Cemetery Registrar, Burial fees, etc.
13
3
0
Total
668
10
10

And that the following balances were in hand on the under-mentioned accounts :-


£
s
d
General Account
471
11
9
Loan Account No. 16
410
1
10
Loan Account No. 19
387
17
6
Total
1,269
11
1

Tradesmen’s and Other Accounts

A number of accounts amounting to £502/15/10 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 3rd November, 1909, when there were present :- Messrs. F. Knight (chairman), G. H. Skinner, J. S. Clipson, A. J. Dobbs, C. E. Bayes, F. Ballard, and J. Paragreen.

Health and Sanitary Reports

The Medical Officer reported that eight cases of infectious disease had been notified since the last meeting, viz., five of scarlet fever, two of diphtheria, and one of erysipelas.

The Sanitary Inspector informed the Committee that during the month of October he had served 42 informal notices calling attention to nuisances, etc., which were receiving attention.

The attention of the Committee was called by the Inspector to the bad state of the backways leading from No. 52 to 112 Glassbrook-road, and from Newton-road to Manton-road, and also to Co-operative-row. He was instructed to write to all the abutting owners, calling their attention thereto and requesting them to put the roads in a proper state of repair.

The Inspector reported that the notice served on Mr. T. Rose to provide a manure pit for the stables occupied by him at the rear of No. 25 Victoria-road, had not been complied with. It was resolved to recommend the Council to institute proceedings against Mr. Rose before the Magistrates.

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

Cromwell-Road

The Surveyor was instructed to give attention to a choked sewer at the rear of No. 39 and 41 Cromwell-road.

Sewage Disposal Works

The Surveyor submitted a report, based on the present requirements of the Local Government Board, and on the recommendation contained in the report of the Royal Commission, giving the methods for more effectually dealing with the sewage at the outfall works, which was ordered to be printed for the information of the members of the Council. The Committee suggested that the Council should meet in Committee to consider the report on Wednesday, the 15th December next.

Refuse Receptacles

The Sanitary Inspector 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 ashpit, ashtub, 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.

The Inspector informed the Committee that, as the result of an interview with Mr. Bayes, that gentleman had now removed the manure pit and provided in place thereof one galvanized iron receptacle for the two houses previously using the pit. Mr. Bayes had also promised to provide galvanised iron receptacles in place of the present wooden ones, on the latter becoming worn out. Subject to the approval of the committee, he proposed to accept this as a satisfactory settlement.

The Committee approved.

Workmen and Holidays

Mr. Dobbs, in accordance with notice, moved that the Council grant to their employees one week’s holiday a year, with payment of wages. He believed every man should have a least one week’s holiday a year. It was not a new idea, for the officers already had an annual holiday, and he wanted to see this granted to the workmen too. He did not think it would entail much additional expense.

Mr. Paragreen seconded the motion, and thought it was especially desirable that a holiday be given, seeing that some of the men now worked on Sunday mornings. He did not think the Sunday work was at all necessary, but that it should be done on Saturday nights as in other towns.

Mr. Ballard asked whether the ratepayers would have an opportunity of opposing the expenditure before the auditor, and if there was any likelihood of the Council being surcharged. The Clerk did not think it at all likely that an objection would be sustained. It was perfectly competent for the Council to pass the resolution.

Mr. Bazeley hoped the Council would pass the resolution unanimously. He did not think the extra cost would be more than 4d. a week to the workmen they employed, taking the year through.

The Chairman asked when it was suggested that the holiday should be given.

Mr. Dobbs thought that should be arranged for the convenience of the Surveyor and the men.

Mr. Claridge did not think there was a class of men in the town who were better satisfied with their position than the Council men. The town was heavily rated now and he did not think they would be justified in passing the resolution. He believed the men were perfectly satisfied with their remuneration and he did not think it was wise to upset the present arrangement. He questioned whether there were many Councils who granted a week’s holiday with pay. One of the members laughed, but the ratepayers who had to pay did not laugh. He looked at the proposal as an unnecessary expense.

Mr. Paragreen said he supposed the employees were rated the same as the rest of the towns-people.

Mr. Knight asked whether Mr. Dobbs could mention other Councils who gave a week’s holiday with pay.

Mr. Dobbs said he understood there were others, but he was not prepared with names.

Mr. Bazeley : It states in the Municipal Year-book that the men under some Councils have an annual holiday, but I have not the book and cannot say which Councils.

Mr. Ballard : Do the men have extra remuneration for work on Sunday? I don’t believe in men working extra time without pay.

The Surveyor : They are paid 1s. for about two hours.

Mr. Ballard : That point falls through, then.

The Chairman : I think the men are well satisfied.

Mr. Swindall said he was not in favour of a week’s holiday at one time but he thought the men might be paid for the Bank Holidays.

Mr. Dobbs said he did not mind much whether they had the holiday all at once or on separate days.

Mr. Miller did not think anyone on that side of the Council could be accused of want of sympathy with their work people. It was stated that the officials were paid for holidays but the officials were paid so much a year and put in an extraordinary amount of over time for which they got no pay. He did not care for those motions being sprung upon them as electioneering devices just before an election came on. He believed in the town workmen being well paid and if they were not they should bring the matter forward.

Mr. Dobbs did not think Mr. Miller ought to make the comparison between the officials and the workmen. He was quite in favour of the officials having a holiday but he thought the workmen ought to have one too. So far from his motion being an electioneering dodge, he might say that he would have to alter his mind if he put up for the Council again.

Mr. Bazeley : With regard to electioneering dodges, this proposal was on the programme of the Labour party at the last election.

The motion was then put and was lost by 8 votes to 4. There voted in its favour Messrs. Bazeley, Bates, Dobbs and Paragreen: against, Messrs. Skinner, Knight, Claridge, Miller, Bayes, Clipson, Ballard, and Swindall.

The Public and Council Meetings

A letter was received from the local branch of the S.D.P., asking if there was any objection to the public attending the meetings of the Council.

The consideration of the letter was deferred till the next meeting.


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