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SHROPSHIRE CHAMBER OF AGRICULTURE.

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HOW THEY MANAGE MUNICIPAL…

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HOW THEY MANAGE MUNICIPAL MATTERS AT SHREWSBURY. (From the Oswestry Advertizer.) The Shrewsbury Corporation are determined to purge themselves of any taint of liberalism and, if we are to believe the evidence of a couple of police sergeants. Fortune smiles upon their efforts. In our immaculate county town, from an alderman down to a scavenger, the supreme qualification is Toryismânot the modern con- servatism of cultivated men, but the good, old, undiluted Toryism of ancient days the Toryism which knew nothing valuable beyond ibself, and which was far too conscious of its own advantages to hesitate about the method of dis tributing them through society. At the present moment the very mud of Shrewsbury is considered too sacred to be touched by liberal shovels, and if a few members of the radical party still wear the alderman's gown, it is only because past events, which Fortune has since reversed, render it necessary that the Corporation should wait awhile before a complete purgation can be accomplished. Then, the-Tories fondly hope, although the deluded in- habitants of one or two wards may still perhaps send a handful of liberal representatives to the Council, the minority will be so small that the wishes of a great body of respectable ratepayers can be ignored, and the affairs of the town handed over to a clique. We shall seo; but meanwhile let us tell an instructive tale. Our readers will remember how, on the night cf the "great conservative victory" at Shrewsbury, when the petition was dismissed, the windows of some of the petitioners were broken by the mob; and one unhappy policeman, forgetful of his duty to the Tory party, foolish- ly kept his eyes open while the riotous procession paraded the streets. If Police-constable COOK had only winked, it is quite possible that he would still occupy the distinc- tion of serving the Shrewsbury corporation but he seems to have thought more of his duty to the public than the party, and when he saw a stone thrown at Mr DAYIES'IS window he arrested the man whom he supposed to be the offender. "Fool and unwise." There were those who said at the time that Police-constable CooiCs days were numbered in the Shrewsbury force, and so, strange to say, has it happened. The accused found three of his fellow processionists," as they have been euphoniously called, to swear that he was innocent, and the Shrewsbury Bench, so famous for judicial wisdom, dismissed the charge. The defendant escaped, but not the policeman. A few days afterwards Police-constable COOK appeared before the Watch Committee, on a charge of drunkenness, and was dismissed the force. Sergeant ABBOTS said he was drunk, and so did Sergeant JONES and although it is a somewhat singular fact that OWEN, according to ABBOTS'S testimony, was quite sober at one o'clock a.m., and quite drunk at two a.m., notwithstanding the difficulty which he must have experienced in obtaining drink meanwhile, and although the ser- geant appears to have walked with him for a considerable distance before he discovered poor OWEN'S condition, we have no wish to throw the slightest discredit upon the testimony of two men who, for anything we know to the contrary, are respectable and trustworthy. It may be mentioned, however, that ABBOTS and OWEN were dis- puting about the window-breaking case, that both most likely became excited, and that if OWEN'S excitement was mistaken for drunkenness by the two sergeants, it was not the first time by many that such a mistake has been made. The accused, we are told, was not listened to patiently when he offered his defence, which, we are bound to say, reads like an honest, straightforward statement, and the Watch Committee, with something like indecent haste, dismissed from their service one of the most useful and intelligent men in the force for this, at least, on all hands, COOK is allowed to have been. The man has not suffered, since he has instantly found a better place in the Haniey constabulary, where, apparently, the worth of P.C. COOK has more weight than the character of the Shrewsbury Corporation; but what about the Watch Committee? Well, they have rid themselves of a police- man who arrested a Tory "processionist," and all we can hope for them is, that they have the approval of their own consciences, because that, most likely, is the only approval they will get. No doubt, they are "all honourable men," but the public will talk about the prophecy and its strange fulfilment. On Monday the work of purgation was carried still further, this time in higher regions. Mr J. CROSS pro- posed, and Mr THOMPSON seconded, that Mr WILSON, a liberal councillor, who had attended more meetings of the Market Committee than anyone else, should again serve on that committee, but the motion, of course, was nega- tived. If the mud'must only be .shoveled by Tory sca- vengers, and persons and property only protected by Tory truncheons, how much more important that the market should be managed by members of the same great party ? And if liberals should be rigidly excluded frDin committees, how could they be placed upon trusts? It was vain, therefore, for Mr CROSS to move, as he did on Monday, that Alderman PIDDUCK and Councillor WILSON should be placed on the Preston Brockhurst Turnpike Trust. The Council would have none of them, but faithfully carried out their policy by appointing two of their own number to keep the roads in order. Finally there was an aldermanic vacancy to fill, and it was fondly hoped, we believe, by certain ardent members of the party, that a defeated candidate for municipal honours would be seated in the alderman's chair, in spite of the decision of the ratepayers that he should not occupy the less dig- nified position of a councillor. In another influential quarter, however, a distinguished convert to the Tory ranks seems to have been destined for the honour, and through a split in the camp the gown might have fallen upon liberal shoulders Fortune again favoured the Tories, for the notice being alleged to be informal, an ad- journment took place, and next November, when the three liberal aldermen retire, the Tories will be able to reward their friends, while at the same time they thoroughly purge the aldermanic bench. At least they hope so, 1;L we shall see. Fortune is fickle. Fortune is fickle, and Monday's proceedings did not pass without-not a defeat only, but something besides a defeat-for the Tories. At the meeting of the Council in November Mr EDWARD HUGHES said "a matter had cropped up which required some explanation." He re- ferred to the rumoured application for a fresh appoint- ment of borough magistrates, and asked Mr HARRIES if he knew anything about it, a question which was objected to, but pressed, and finally answered in the negative. Mr GROVES, however, thought the subject should be en- quired into, and proposed that, as an application had been made to the LORD CHANCELLOR, and the CHANCELLOR had replied to it, his lordship should be respectfully requested to allow the Council to see the correspondence. The motion âof course-was seconded and carried, and here the matter would probably have ended, for the Tories are wise enough not to expose their own misfortunes, but Mr J. CROIS- who will persist in putting unpleasant questions-asked for the correspondence with the LORD CHANCELLOR, which was accordingly produced. His lordship politely intimated that the application was very like an imperti- nence; and Alderman PIDDUCK properly remarked that the letter was a well-merited rebuke. Perhaps the Shrewsbury Tories will be content to fly at lower game for the future. The CHANCELLOR'S snub was felt, for, when Mr CROSS enquired how the language used at the Novem- ber meeting could now be justified, he was answered with anything but soft words. Let us part with the Tories of Shrewsbury with a word of sympathy. They have a majority in the Council, it is true, and next November, if the fates are kind, the red snatched from the hated liberal shoulders, where it now aggravates the Tories much as the same colour aggravates a bull. They can appoint their own scavengers, and dismiss policemen who never wink. Their lot, in short, is a happy oneâbut, alas, they have a small body of determined liberals in their midst, who have more respect for the public interest tlian the feelings of the Tories, and, if municipal matters are to be made entirely subservient to the predominance of party, the work will not be done in the dark. Possibly, in course of time, the public will begin to think that the liberal minority must be converted into a majority if the municipal government of Shrewsbury is to Jbe anything but a scandal and a farce.

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