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The Rushden Echo and Argus, 11th September 1931, transcribed by Gill Hollis
Rushden Urban District Council
Wellingborough Road Dust Nuisance
Rat Week Discussion
Spencer Park Proposed Bowling Green

Less than twenty minutes sufficed to dispose of the public business at the monthly meeting of the Rushden Urban District Council on Wednesday evening, but several items of interest featured on the agenda.

The members present were Messrs. L. Perkins, J.P., B.Sc. (in the chair), J. Roe (vice-chairman), J. Spencer, J.P., A. Allebone, C.C., J. Hornsby, A. Wilmott, T. Wilmott, G. W. Coles, J.P., C. Claridge, J. Richardson, C. W. Horrell, C.A., W. E. Capon, F. Green, T. F. B. Newberry, T. Swindall, J. Allen, with the Clerk Mr. G. S. Mason.

The Parks, Baths and Hall Committee reported that they had had under consideration the question of the provision of a new bowling green in Spencer Park. The special sub-committee had reported that they had met in the park and now recommended a site adjoining the present greens on the south side of the sewer track.

It was resolved provisionally to accept the sub-committee’s recommendation as to the site but the Committee deferred further consideration with regard to construction until the next meeting.

The Parks Committee also stated that the question of the provision of a band-stand in the Hall grounds was again considered and adjourned for two months.

The Hall Committee recommended the Council to expend a sum of £12 in the provision of flowering shrubs, &c., which it was proposed to plant in three beds about the grounds.

This was passed by the Finance Committee and the council approved the recommendation.

Swimming Club

A letter was received by the Baths Committee from the secretary of the Swimming Club requesting that they be allowed to change their hours on Mondays and Tuesdays to 7 to 8 p.m. in lieu of from 8 to 9 p.m.; that polo nets are provided, and that some slight adjustment be made to the diving boards.

The council agreed to allow the use of the baths to the club as usual on Mondays and Tuesdays but altered the hour from 8 to 9 p.m. to 7.30 to 8.30 p.m. and decided to offer no objection to polo nets being provided if the club purchased at their own expense. The question of the adjustment to the diving boards was referred to the Baths Emergency Sub-committee with power to act. This was approved by the Council.

Moving the adoption of the Parks, Baths, and Hall committee’s report, Mr. Spencer said there was not much to report this month. Some consideration had been given to the new bowling green, and the proposed bandstand, but there were only two resolutions, dealing with the Swimming Club and the purchase of flowers.

Councillor Hornsby asked if the Committee had, in considering the bowling greens, agreed to use either Cumberland turf or local turf.

Councillor Spencer: As a matter of fact we are not so far advanced as that at present. When the time comes we shall give a report on both ordinary turf and Cumberland turf.

On the recommendation of the Plans, Highways, and Lighting Committee, plans were approved as follows: Bungalow in Court Avenue for Mr. J. Barrick; house in Hayway for Mr. A. J. Sturgess; four houses in Wymington-road for Mrs. M. M. Drabble; house in Wymington-road for Mr. H. Roughton; two houses in Upper Queen-street for Messrs. T. Swindall and Sons; additions to house, Hayway for Mr. A. Tomms; additions to workshop No. 121, High-street for Mr. G. W. Cobley; workshop and garage in Carnegie-street and Station-road for Mr. J. Joyce; new road off Wellingborough-road for Mr. Arthur Sanders.

A plan for a covering for petrol pumps in Station-road, for Mr. J. Joyce, was rejected as not conforming to the building line.

Highways Matters

With reference to the plan for a shop and flat over in High-street South submitted by Mrs. A. Deighton and referred to the County Surveyor, a letter was received from the latter stating that his Roads and Bridges Committee were in negotiation with Mrs. Deighton for the surrender by her to the County Council of a certain portion of her land, and asking the Council, pending such negotiation being completed, to refrain from giving any consent under Section 3 of the Public Health Buildings and Street Act, 1888, to Mrs. Deighton bringing forward her proposed new building beyond the front main wall of the house or buildings in the same street.

The Plans and Highways Committee recommended the Council to adopt this course and leave it to the County Council themselves to prescribe a building line under section 5 of the Roads Improvement Act, 1925, and this was agreed to.

The Surveyor submitted a plan showing the proposed extension of the culvert to be constructed by the County Council on Skinners Hill. In a letter the Surveyor stated that if the Council decided to continue the culvert to the point where the brook comes under the existing road, the County Council would no doubt, if requested to do so by the District Council undertake to carry out the work at the District Council’s expense.

Without coming to any definite decision the Committee decided to approach the owner with a view, in case the Council should decide to carry out the work, to his giving up to the Council a plot of land on property recently offered by auction, and having an area of about 500 square yards.

An application was received from Mrs. Drabble for the sewer in Wymington-road to be continued as far as the houses proposed to be erected by her on that road, and it was agreed to take the sewer as far as the old cricket field gate at an estimated cost of £350.

A resolution by the Finance Committee, to the effect that it was understood that the work would be carried out by direct labour and would be done as to one half in the financial year and the remainder in next, was carried.

Dust Complaint

Councillor Spencer said he would like to ask the chairman of the Highways Committee whether any complaint had been received from residents in Irchester-road, Wellingborough-road, or Washbrook-road regarding the dust nuisance. People in Wellingborough-road had had to close their windows after the roads had been dressed, and never in the history of the town had there been anything like it; the gravel must have been of a very poor nature.

Councillor T. Wilmott said no complaint had been received; this was the first he had heard of it.

Councillor Spencer: You would have known if you lived along the Wellingborough-road!

Councillor Wilmott said it was a County Council matter. Some of the bye-roads were not dusty; there was none in Newton-road.

Councillor Spencer said some representation should be made about it.

Councillor Roe said he would like to ask if any complaint had been received regarding Fletcher-road. He knew it was a private road.

The assistant Surveyor said nothing had been done.

The chairman said the residents might take the matter up, but the Council could take no action as it was a private road.

The Health and Sanitary Committee reported that they had had under consideration the question of making Bye-laws in connection with slaughter houses and the slaughtering of animal’s for food and instructed the Clerk to obtain copies of the model bye-laws issued by the Ministry of Health with a view to the matter being further considered at the next meeting.

The special Sub-committee of the Finance Committee appointed at the July meeting to consider the advisability of fixing a scale of salaries for junior clerks in the employ of the Council reported that they had met and now submitted a scale to be operative from the time of appointment until the age of 21.

Councillor Green, moved the adoption of the Finance Committee’s report suggesting it would be better if this matter was considered in Committee, also a resolution dealing with two applications for increases in salary. – This was agreed to.

General Rate

The Finance Committee reported that they had considered the amount in the £ of the General Rate for the ensuing half year and recommended the Council to fix the same at 6/- and to instruct the Rate Clerk to prepare a rate at this sum for sealing at the October meeting. – This was approved.

Councillor Green said the amount was the same as in the previous half year.

Councillor Allen asked, as there was no report of the Housing Committee before the Council, whether the Council would give the Committee authority to carry on with the repairs to the Council houses. The tenders would be in on Monday, but if they waited for the next full Council meeting, it would mean that the repairs would be delayed until the winter, and they ought to be done at once.

The chairman said the Clerk suggested that the Committee could carry on with the repairs and report to the next council meeting. In the meantime the Council would not disagree with what the Committee were doing; they did not want the work delayed.

Rat Week

The Clerk read a letter stating that National Rat Week would be held from November 2nd to November 7th.

The chairman said he thought they generally had a scale of payment for the week.

The Clerk: Two-pence a tail.

The Chairman: In view of the desire for economy does any member wish to move a reduction of 5 per cent?

Councillor Wilmott: I think we might ignore it. What do we get for it?

It was stated that at Higham three-pence a tail was offered, and that people took the tails there!

The Chairman: I think we should keep the price low and let people take the tails to the highest market!

Councillor Spencer moved that the Rat Week be held.

Councillor Swindall said he would move that the matter be referred to the Health and Sanitary Committee, and this was carried, Councillor Spencer withdrawing his resolution.

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