|The Rushden Echo and Argus, 15th May, 1942, transcribed by Gill Hollis
Council on “Nasty Remarks” - Ironwork the Trouble
List Extended - Garden Rubbish Hampers Salvage Work
Gates and copings are to suffer the same fate as railings in the “raid on Rushden.” The Urban District Council announced this at Wednesday’s meeting and appealed for public goodwill in connection with the demolition of ironwork. Mr. Richardson commenting on “nasty remarks” which have been made during the last few days.
The Clerk (Mr. W. L. Beetenson) reported that, at the request of a Ministry of Works officer, gates, standards and copings had been added to the schedule of requisitioned ironwork.
Coun. Richardson remarked that some strange things were being said with regard to the requisitioning. Some people thought that railings round public properties should be taken first. He would like the public to know that the Council approved only of railings being taken, but had now been compelled to include the other items.
“I am reminded,” he said, “of one of the famous Spurgeons who came to Rushden and talked about taking ‘the gates, the posts and bar and all.’ Will the Press assure the public who are inclined to say some nasty things to and about us that we did our best for them, and that the authorities above us say that it must be the rails, gates, posts and bar and all?”
Coun. Capon: The contractors have started to-day and the first load has been taken to the foundry.
Coun. Spencer: Sometimes it is stated that materials are lying about for some period. I know that when they come to knock my house about it will be like the walls of Jericho they will fall down.
The Chairman (Coun. W. J. Sawford): I think that when the railings are down some people will be glad they are gone and that you can get nearer the window. I hope they will take it in a good spirit.
Increase of Reading
In her annual report the Librarian (Miss M. Perkins) stated that 116,632 books were issued, compared with 95,356 for the previous year 17,387 adult non-fiction, 7,515 juvenile non-fiction, 70,282 adult fiction and 20,948 juvenile fiction. In addition 112 volumes were lent to the A.T.C. Out of 109 applications for the loan of books through the East Midlands Regional Bureau, 104 were successful. There were 3,498 books on loan at the end of the library year.
Adult membership was 3,560 (including 324 evacuees). During the year 40 non-resident members borrowed books on payment of a quarterly subscription of one shilling.
For the lending department 1,329 additional books were purchased and 150 presented, making the book stock 8,913. On March 31st, 125 books on loan were at least six weeks overdue.
Of books bespoken “Gone with the Wind” was reserved 33 times, “Rebecca” 27, “All This and Heaven Too” 13. Other popular novels were “How Green Was My Valley,” “Hatter’s Castle,” “For Whom the Bell Tolls,” “Mr, Lucton’s Freedom,” “Fame is the Spur,” the “Whiteoak” series by Mazo de la Roche and the newest novels of Philip Gibbs.
In the case of unreturned books the Council resolved that in future, after one reminder had been sent, the Clerk should issue a notice threatening the defaulter with proceedings.
On the question of withdrawing “objectionable” books from the Library, it was agreed that any such books should be perused by the Book Selection Sub-Committee before removal from the shelves.
The Surveyor (Mr. J. W. Lloyd) reported that the refuse collectors were experiencing difficulty in the collection of house refuse and salvage because many householders placed garden refuse in the bins. The Health Committee stated that this practice was not conducive to the success of the salvage collection or in the best interests of the householders. They urged the public to use the bins for house refuse only, and recommended the burning or burial of garden refuse.
The Surveyor gave notice that owing to petrol restriction and the shortage of labour it would be impossible this year to mow the grass at the cemetery as in normal times.
Mrs. Muxlow emphasized the appeal. The committee, she said, knew it was difficult to dispose of rubbish in a small garden, but if residents did as suggested it would save space, transport and time.
They would be very pleased if the public would also co-operate at the cemetery.
Coun. Spencer said that a little refuse from small gardens should not be complained of. In a large garden there was plenty of room to burn it.
Mrs. Muxlow: I think it was suggested that in a small garden they should dig it in.
The Surveyor announced that waste materials to the value of £90 were collected during April and included 16 tons 7 cwt. paper, 11 cwt. bones, 2 tons 9 cwt. iron, 11 cwt. rags, 4 tons 2 cwt. steel turnings, 1 ton 19 cwt. kitchen waste, and 200 dozen bottles.
“I see you have a wonderful collection all the time,” said Coun. Spencer, “but I wondered how you disposed of it. I have heard remarks all over the town that it is overflowing. It is my idea that salvage collected should go straight away if possible. If they can’t dispose of it, people are not encouraged to find it.”
“Month by month we get rid of all our collections,” replied the Surveyor. “At the moment, tins are held up, but paper, bones, rags, etc. are disposed of month by month.”
Details were received of the salvage contest (during May, June and July) promoted by the Waste Paper Recovery Association, with prizes ranging from £1,000 to £50, and the Council agreed to inform the Ministry of Supply that they would be pleased to enter.
It was decided to use the old smithy at the Newton-road depot as a cleansing station for scabies cases, and to equip it with baths and geyser at a cost of £85.
In view of the call for economy in the use of petrol it was agreed to have the grass in the parks cut not more than once a fortnight.
Coun. Allen said it would be impossible to have the grass cut as frequently as in the past.
Rushden Helps Higham
At the suggestion of a National Fire Service official it was decided to provide lifebuoys for the protection of the public at the static water supply basins. The Council agreed to make itself responsible for an additional basin just inside the Higham Ferrers boundary, as the site chosen for a Higham basin on the other side of the boundary had been found to be badly water-logged.
“It is rather funny,” said Coun. Richardson, “that we should have to have a basin in Rushden to supply the needs of the borough. It is becoming a common thing to find the borough asking us for favours.”
Coun. Allebone: Where is it funny?
Coun. Richardson: Well, the ‘Senior Service’ asking us for favours!
Coun. Waring said he imagined that in these days of scientific research some use should be made for industrial heating of leather dust which went from the district in pretty big quantities and had to be destroyed. He would like to suggest that mention of it should be made to the Minister dealing with fuel, bringing to his knowledge the quantity of leather dust available.
Coun. Capon: It has been tried.
Coun. Allebone: We send ours away and it is used for manural purposes and is not wasted. I appreciate the point; if it can be used for other purposes it ought to be.
Coun. Capon: At another factory it is burned.
The new committee chairmen were announced as follows : Health and Sanitary, Mrs. Muxlow; Housing, Coun. Allen; Highways, Coun. Richardson; Library, Coun. Bailey; Finance, Coun. Allebone.
A report by the Housing Manager (Mr. H. C. Allen) showed that in connection with the 1941-2 programme of internal decorations only two houses had been completed during the last month, leaving 53 still to be completed. In view of the scarcity of labour and materials the Housing Committee agreed to postpone preparations for a 1942-3 programme.
Mr. Allen reported a great increase in the number of tenants keeping poultry on the housing estates. Almost all the tenants were cultivating their gardens, he added.
Finance Committee minutes mentioned the appointment of a whole-time assistant in connection with fuel control.
It was decided to join with the Higham Ferrers and Raunds Councils in presenting to H.M.S. Quorn a plaque commemorating Warship Week, on the result of which the Admiralty sent congratulations. The purchase of a teak plaque costing £10 4s. was recommended.
Re-gilding of St. Mary’s Church clock at a cost of £3 was agreed to, the Council taking an opportunity provided by the presence of scaffolding in connection with church repairs.
East Midlands Provincial Council proposals for amending the scale of war bonus paid to officers and staff were not taken up, the Finance Committee considering that the proposed increases were not warranted
The Ministers’ Fellowship was granted permission to hold four Sunday-evening services at the Hall Grounds.
Building plans included an addition to 77, Wellingborough-road for Mrs. M. A. Young.
Coun. Allebone was nominated for membership of a regional committee through which local authorities will have some influence on the administration of the National Fire Service.
Couns. Allebone and Capon were reappointed as trustees of the Rushden Parochial Charities.
Members present were Couns. W. J. Sawford, J.P. (chairman), A. F. Weale (vice-chairman), A. H. Bailey, J. Roe, A. Allebone, J.P., C.C., T. W. Cox, F. Green, J.P., Dr. R. W. Davies, Mrs. O. A. H. Muxlow, J. Allen, W. E. Capon, J. George, T. J. Swindall, J. Spencer, J.P., J. H. J. Paragreen, H. Waring, E. A. Sugars and J. T. Richardson, J.P.