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---IIJ] ANCIENT ORDER OF DRUIDS.

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IIJ] ANCIENT ORDER OF DRUIDS. ANDAL MOVEABLE DELEGATION AT NEWTO\TN. The Annual Moveable Delegation of the Order of dl1 Id8 Was he!d in the Public HaJJ, Newtown, pr the past week. Grand Master G._H. Ellison ita riori' aud was supported by Deputy Grand in 8-6r Wheelhouse. Stockton-on-Tees. Ou Sunday, Orlew of the gathering, the local members of the ,«p assembled at the Public Hall, whence they charched, headed by the Newtown Silver Band, to rf!h. There were between 150 aud 200 members e.sprit, <â¢> n,] ing t}ie Grand Master (Mr G. II. tij ISpri) and the Vice-Grand. At the church aft ep'tor, Rev. A. R. Fishbourue, preached, and ^6r Service the procession was re-formed and str round the New-road, Park-street, High- lIa.lt, a.nd Broad-street, dispersing at the Public th^n *^0l;day, after the several delegates arrived, fr ? at the Lodge Room, the New Inn, for tfcler«a, greeting. In the evening, up to eight tion the Newtown Band played pleasing selec- 8 °f music in Bread street, and from then until members of the Newtown Glee Party sang 8>. e street, there being a large concourse of ^ctators. t)je 'l^'issday morning the brethren assembled in Hje ublic Hail, placed at their disposal for the {]]]? lQf?s, under the presidency of Grand Master pj,eSotl) of Newtown. Over sixty delegates were iin&k611* and the districts represented were Birm- berhtn' Bristol, Chorley, Crewe, Darlington, Glasg°w, Hull, Ilanley, Hawarden, Leeds, ) ^Urt0n> Macclesfield, Manchester, Newcastle, I te^-aia' Oswestry Equalised District (Messrs. W. I W Is' Newtown, A. R. Jones, West street, Oswes- i W) aad John Davies, Windmill, Welshpool), I Sheffield, Salford, Stockton-on-Tees, | S^rrinSton, West Hartlepool, Wigan, Worsley, and ^tiQt°n" ^is *3 annual m jveable dele- Iij ja- The Grand Master was supported by Y.G. Tfe,' Wheel house, Mr. Godfrey Higham, Grand H. Wheelhouse, Mr. Godfrey Higham, Grand "istirer, and Mr. J. Westall, Grand Secretary. I to â¢y6 GRAND MASTER welcomed the delegates °rth Wales and to the Oswestry Equalised oppo and pointed out that this was the first I 8erv. 0liity they had had of giving their valuable tyqi ces to further the interests of Druidism in the 8l He heartily bade them welcome, and hoped >r,, ^ould spend a happy week (applause), ofGRAND SECRETARY read a cordial letter fe]]Q eetl'ng from the Independent Order of Odd- UcU. s (M U.), and it was unanimously resolved to to a,t{. e<3 the same. A letter regretting inability was read from Bro. Brewer, with whom fi 6 °f sympathy in his illness was passed, ND MASTER, who was very heartily tije eu, said he wished to thank the brethren for V Cor(1wi way they had received him, and S§ed hope that they would be as enthusi- I T^10 END "IE Proceedings as they were ginning (laughter and applause). He had 8ecific reasons for taking upon himself the ^liy ^bility of making an innovation, viz., in not £ anything like an address. The first ^arcj ^as 'hat during previous delegations he had I th0lJ of the most eloquent addresses until he tho 'he climax had been reached, therefore he C(^ l'it was time to make a new departure, as ^nd a Dot P0SS1h'y equal any of the speeches of I 1'he g ^asters who had preceded him ("no, no' ). *Jlitt;fif!et0nd reason was that the energetic local coin- had catered so well for the enjoyment of lie (jjj e§ates whilst they remained in Wales that ought to take np their timeâ I "'eek )-and the third reason was that it was assize 'hat the hall would be required on Friday, so ^otlW be necessary to finish their business |*t 0BQts^ay, therefore he wished to get to work ^0jfcaC,e (hear, hear). There were several im- Cal] 1ue8'^or'8 to which their attention would 1 les there was the proposal to amend the they uinst remember that when they ^Ufc rules 'hey dealt with the funda- 0'HEP f,r'n°iples of the Order (bear, hear). AD- Question to be considered was the proposed a'ioa with regard to the initiation of members, 'h« advisability of introducing into the Order FV °f one year old, which was a new depar- The question of old age pensions was one ilu0?1 had agitated the minds of all interested i *Wetldly societies for a great many years, and he f fc^at wIiatever was ^one 'his week by the WaS societies in the country they would i to advance some steps towards the realisa- I pUBfiiiE ^'ie U10S' vital principles of friendly | Such a question as old age Si Of 6 always regarded as the coping 11011, ho 4 huge wall (loud applanae). In concln- to Earnestly hoped their proceedings would I 6 CQ spread and furtherance of Druidism in of Oond applause). 'hauu ATon (Stockport) proposed a hearty vote to the Grand Master for bis short and I OI1 Address. He said that if the business was and thoroughly they would not regret Vls'ted Newtown (applause). r was seconded and carried unam- GRAND SECRETARY'S REPORT. | })^retfll^,ran<i Secretary reported as follows:â D' aui a?a'11 remitified that the time °nof when I have to submit my annual re- Cn^^Kt 6 ^as^ness during the Druidical year just business during the Druidical year just 11 tIt of ha close, and likewise to give you an ac- i c erie^!> ⢠^nanc'a' position of the Order. Com- I for 'he work done, there is not much e SQla,ll generally, although amongst a.thy a Or districts and isolated lodges the same f c bofif .care'("-suess as to their own improve- e^Plain ^11 uutnbers and finance, that has been th ^wo or 'hree former reports still to con'inae '° 'a'Ie little interest in the f ^6en t?n^ 'he Order, and the reforms needed eeSa.r(j heniselves level with the times. With of the larger districts, strenuous jj ^esu. have been made, and the result has been TH^dttot only have they increased, but they a.re the losses of the indifferent, thus Ui6t last abled to show an increase in our numbers 9 statement. The number of adult J '5 j,j hen stood at 43,865, which, added to -n es> made the total 53,240. The present art 44.460; and juveniles, 10,027; t aDd .°^ 54,487, being an increase of 595 8$^ the j juveniles, a total increase of 1,247. tjjCje'atie ^âeasnre last year of praising the various or the prompt aud accurate manner ,,cn in their financial returns, but I am tjj e 'he |he thanks were premature at any h^Ve ,rel«^s and incorrect manner in which 6en ^or"'arded on this occasion load's â ji,<?rt nt>r>F> C°nc^Uf5^on in a great, many cases. No '3 iij ars to have been made to balance them. artly the various auditors' fault; they â 0lible(j aVe jnst signed their names and not tarfect 0r I) ascertain whether the fignres were tones seeQn0t' believe some auditors and secre- ^he '° think that when the returns are sent '|h. °^ce of the Order tlioy are done b ^eecj C 13 lot the case; they have to be aricl every figure entered in a return to tlje 'he whole (after being corrected) Pew :|'ief Registrar. So it is a very irnpor- c'ly at 'he auditors should see they are c I tj-Qâ?0r,rt>c' before affixing their Si gnat u res, k 1 °y will do so for the future. The c etl £ 48 3dA !t0 si°k and funeral benefits have Oc^6 of nr3Ps 10d> a decrease on last year's in- t'h hei' x> anc^ "ie expenditure £ 34,278 W 6 is a l)'T 16s less than the previous year, j^fitg of e°rease in the expenditure for funeral 8jdevi°Us r ^76 0s 7d, as compared with the erab]e (jRP°rt, and there appears to be a con- Ca tne1t -p,ecrease in the contributions for Man- ta«alh 'r °f ci'867 19s 9d. Interest on the tl Pecreased bv £ 761 18s 5d. Thus, Wal 05cPen^;al lncomeâ £ 60,903 15s Idâand the ilif^ctionc,1 U5G' we have a saving on the year's iorf:tv''1<vw>v.l £ 2,006 12s Od. The greatest tK 0tlle for â¢f.?'-ars 'n 'he Medical Aid Fund, the iie><5xPeiuli1V lcl1 on'>? appears as £ 785 12s 3d, and ^25 igg £ 2.111 10s 9d, a difference of 'he mo fem alone is sufficient to t}u5^ed. fn.'nner which the returns are for- tjj ^ficienp6 C'Qest^on naturally arises, where does W aPpoarsyf COme.fr°m ? And the only answer is Q IS IJot" ° me lS that the income for manage- ehit6(j but ;n t h disbursements it accouMf^ *^e(^ca1 Aid Fund. I see no other £ l]xtments I, for 'he large difference. The O 63,859 18 (n C'apltal only show in this return tK; or a ^â°d' as against last report, £ 124.436 t[ ni')y be e of £ 10,576 Is 10d. I believe Ifir) triets t"ounted for as follows â In some of \tS°t!:ie hav ave no' shown their investments, ^ea Uagementt?ade U0 retnrns at a11- The Board or> <1.1". and hive. laveheld four meetings during the V ie\v I frntEd twen'y-six applications for he i siin>' an ni^GS' an(^ have considered a scheme before l'etIS'oa Fund, which will alSo f) â ^OQ for your consideration. They ^Phi-a^hty at considerable length the }cantg for the amount to be granted to £ lmC-^ent comPensation, making the ^ken in+ in .'he worst cases. They have Ha^erebv 0 consIderation the alteration of rule old, bothersons. can he admitted from one approval ° ,1Which wdl be for your discussion 01 ^approval. Ten applications for grants from the Accident Fund have been heard, and £120 has been granted to four cases, one was not considered to come under the rule, one had re- covered from the accident, one had contributed to the accident by his own carelessness, aud three are adjourned for further inquiry. Two appeal cases have been heard, one of which was a question of sick pay, and one with regard to receiving money and withholding same. The correspondence has been laid before the Board, and various questions as to rules been replied to, and the whole of their business transacted in such a manner that, I believe, should meet with your approval. Trusting your visit to Newtown will combine pleasure with business, and the advancement and improvement of the Order be the result of your deliberations,âI am, yours fraternally, John Westall, Grand Secre- tary." F.nancial statement, compiled from re- turns received from Districts and Lodges. Receipts: Worth of Sick and Funeral Fund, December 31st, 1894, £109,868 7s 5d; worth of Management Fund, £8,931 5s; contributions to Sick aDd Funeral Fund, £48,346 10s lOd; contribu- tions to Management Fund, £7,862 10s Id: en- trance fees £196 6s 3d honorary members, £60 15s 4d Widows and Orphans' Fund, £1,267 3 4d medical aid, £785 12s 3d; interest on capital, £2,384 17s total, £179,703 7s 6d. Expenditure Amount paid to sick members, £34,278 Os lOd amount paid for funeral benefits, £9,423 6s 3d amount paid levies to districts, £2,052 8s Id; amount paid widows and orphans, £1,347 4s 4d amount paid for medical aid, £2,111108 9d amount paid for management expenses, £9,684 12s lOd worth of sick and funeral fund, December 31st, 12s; worth of management fund, £7,818 12s5d; total, £ 179,7037s6d. Investments: Cash invested on mortgage, £10,170 7s lOd cash invested in Post Office and other banks, £37,169 3s 8d cash invested with Corporation and build- ings, £58,464 Is 2d cash invested with District and Lodge treasurers, £3,056, 6s; total, £113,859 18s 8d. A copy of the balance sheet was handed to each delegate, together with the auditors' report. The report of the auditors was as follows :âBrethren,â We, the undersigned, being the auditors of the Order for the last financial year, have carefully examined all vouchers, books, and accounts of the Board of Management, for the year ending 31st December, 1895, and have pleasure in certifying them to be correct. With regard to the goods in stock we are pleased to report that we found them clean and in good order. Their value on 31st December, 1894, was 8s ll^d, and on 31st December last JE416 5s3d, being a decrease in value of JE40 3s 8d. Treating the various accounts analytically, we find them to work out as follows Accident Compensation Fund, balance in hand 31st December, 1894, £441 9s 9d; income, 1895, £172 15s 5d expenditure, 1895, £195; balance in hand 31st December 1895, JE419 5s 2d. Extension Fund, balance in hand 31st December 1894, £13 13s Ogd income, 1895, £80 6s; expendi- ture, 1895, £5 10s; balance in hand 31st December 1895, £88 9s Od. Management, Fines, Travelling, and Goods Fund, balance in hand 31st December, 1894, £ 44 3s 8d; income, 1895, £ 535 lis 3§d expenditure, 1895, £ 535 18s 2^d; balance in hand 31st December, 1895, £43 16s 9d. Comparing the above figures with 1894, we find Accident Com- pensation Fund, expenditure exceeds income by £22 4s 7d, reducing the balance by that amount. Extension Fund, balance in hand increased by £74 16s. Management, &c., decrease on the year of 6s lid on the general balance. It will, no doubt, be observed that the foregoing tabulated figures do not take into account any amounts owing by districts. Your auditors respectfully recommend that you should consider the necessity for the coming year of making any levy in respect of the Extension Fund. In addition to the large balance in hand on that account, there is also the sum of £10 Os 9d owing by districts yet to be placed to its credit. In all other respects the balance sheet speaks for itself, and an intelligent and thoughtful perusal of its items will be found to repay the reader. Trusting you will consider our labours to have been well spent, and that we merit your thanksâWe are, Brethren, yours fraternally, William Haughton, R. Verney Clayton, auditors, 14th March, 1896. GRANT TO THE JOURNAL. On considering the balance sheet Bro WALKER (Manchester) called attention to the item of £6 which was paid for the editing of the Journal, and complained that a letter on old age pensions, which he had forwarded to the editor, had been refused insertion. Bro MELLOR (Crewe), said he certainly thought there should be no censorship exercised over the Journal, except the ordinary censorship. Bro EATON (Stoektou-on-Tees) expressed simi- lar views. Bro DENTON (Hull) seconded the motion. Bro CLAYTON (Manchester) said be thought they were going too fast. It was unwise to inter- fere with the discretion of the editor, and order him to insert a letter of which they knew absolutely nothing. There was such a thing as the law of libel, which applied just as much to a private jour- nal as the Times (hear, hear). The GRAND MASTER said that while he sym- pathised with the motion he thought it would be better to endeavour to have an understanding with the editor than to pass the motion (hear, hear). Bro WALKER withdrew his motion with the consent of the delegation, and the balance sheet and statement of accounts were unanimously agreed to. A DECLINING DISTRICT. Bro CLAYTON asked the indulgence of the dele- gation to bring forward a matter of special impor- tance, and the request being granted he said the district of which he had the honour of being treasurer had been in a declining state since the influenza scare in 1890. They had lost both money and members. In 189'J the number of members was 722, and the funds between £11,000 and £12000. now they had a little more than 400 mem- bers, and something like £70 from a financial point of view. It was imperative that some steps should be taken whereby the district could reform itself, and make themselves financially sound. What he now asked for was permission to dissolve and reform. The object in re-forming the district was to benefit the older members as much as possible, and if the matter was not tackled and dealt with immediately the members would probably be absorbed by some other benefit society or societies. Bro. WA LKER said it was desirable to get as many members in the ranks as possible. Bro. LOBERTS (Manchester) was, opposed to giving permission to re-form without further par- ticnlars being supplied. Bro. MELLOR thought the proceedings most irregular. He was of opinion that the district re- ferred to should have known something of their condition long before now, and or "ht to have been in a position to put their house ..i order. They were now asking for this permission because they had not grasped the seriousness of their position in time (applause). Bro. NEWMAN (Birmingham) questioned whether it was wise to withhold the causes which led. to such a conditinn of affairs. The GivAND TREASURER said the meeting seemed to him to be a little previous. Bro. Clayton had asked for permission to dissolve. In order to have permission to re-form the district would hitvo to come before them again. Bro. WILLIAMSON (Manchester) moved that permission be given to Manchester No. 1 district to dissolve in accordance with the rules. Bro. GRUNDY (Eotherham) deprecated taking any step which would further harass the district, but could not see his way to support the proposal unless they had more information placed before them. Bro. O'DOWD also thought something more definite should be given them. Bro. EATON sympathised very much with Bro. Clayton and believed that if they gave him the per- mission he asked for he would go home and put the district in a creditable position (hear, hear). Bro. PICKLES seconded the motion. Bro. KInK (Rotherham) opposed the motion. Bro. BORROUGHES opposed the motion, believ- ine' they did not know the facts sufficiently well. Bro. GILL (Chorley) supported the motion, and said Let the dead bury their dead" (applause). further discussion, the motion was carried. VISIT FROM MAJOR PRYCE-JONES, M.P. The GRAND MASTER announced that Major Pryce-Jones, M.P., would grace the gathering with his presence, and the gallant Major, on enteiing the room,-was received with quite an ovation. Having been briefly introduced by the Grand Master, the hon. member, after returning thanks for the warmth of the reception given him, said that on behalf of Newtown and the other Parlia- mentary Boroughs in the county he wished to thank the delegates for the honour they had done Newtown and the county by holding their A.M.D. there. Nowhere could they receive a more hearty welcome than they had received, and woul con tinue to receive, at Newtown (applause). He uopecl their visit would be in every way pleasaut, and that at some future time, when Newtown became, as he hoped it would, more in a position to be honoured by the name of the Leeds of Wales, they would again pay it a visit (loud applause). A vote of thanks to Major Pryce-Jones was heartily accorded, on the motion of the GRAND TREASURER, seconded by Bro. MELLOR. Major PRYCE-JONES, in returning thanks, was again heartily cheered. Referring to old-age pensions, he said those who knew him knew what a deep interest he had taken in the question, and he could also tell them that their worthy Grand Master took a very great interest in it (applause). He could not tell him hew deserving he thought Bro. Ellison was of the honour they had paid him in electing him to the position of Grand Master (hear, hear). He started as a humble member, he had gone through the various offices with credit. and honour, and now stood at their head (loud applause). They thought very highly of him in Newtown, and in Montgomeryshire. He had occupied the highest position the town could confer on himâhe had been chairman of their Local Board (hear. hear). Continuing, the hon. member said he had seen it stated that owing to the good work which Friendly Societies did in the country, in encouraging thrift and thoughtfulness, the State was saved no less a sum than £ 3,000,000 per annum (applause). Such being the case friendly societies had a claim on the State (applause). He thought Parliament and the country should give them some subvention in return for the great saving they caused the taxpayers (loud applause). Par- liament could assist them without interfering with the management of their affairs. He believed a scheme could, and would be shortly, put before the country, which would meet with the wishes of their Order (applause). He hoped, before long, they would include old-age pensions in their scheme (hear, hear). As a humble member of Parliament, he should only be too pleased to give all the support he could to any legislation which would carry out the ideas he had foreshadowed (loud and continued applause.) Other matters of minor importance were dealt with, after which the delegates rose. In the afternoon the visitors were driven in waggonettes around Abermule and Fronfraith Dingle to Kerry, where they visited the Church, and inspected the chained Bible there. They returned to Newtown soon after six o'clock, having thoroughly enjoyed a beautiful drive in the cool of the day. THE BANQUET. In the evening, the delegation, together with a number of local gentlemen, sat down to a rcchcrclw banquet in the Public Hall, over which the hon. member for the boroughs, Major E. Pryce-Joncs, presided with his usual geniality. He was sup- ported by the worthy Grand Master of the Order, (Mr G. H. Ellison), the Grand Officers, and the Board of Management, Dr Purchas, Dr Ravwood, Messrs Ed. Powell, W. E. Pryce-Jones, W. Watkins, Morley Park, Pryce Wilson Jones, W. F. Thomas, Evan Humphreys, E. C. Morgan, F. W. Cooke, A. S. Cooke, Kershaw, Stokes, Bennett, F. Lloyd, Coates, Wilkinson, T. J. Pugh, etc. Mr A. D. Dawson ably filled the vice-chair. A first-class menu was admirably served by Mr Stokes, of the New Inn, and gave unbounded satis- faction. The viands were of the best possible description, and the waiting was in every respect excellent. Full justice, without doubt, was done to the good things provided, after which The CHAIRMAN submitted the usual loyal toasts, and in giving that of the Prince and Princess of Wales and the rest of the Royal family, he re- ferred to the forthcoming visit of their Royal Highnesses to the Principality, and observed that he was pleased to have the privilege to read to them copies of letters which had been sent to Sir Pryce-Jones from Sir Francis Knollys, on behalf of the Prince. Sir Pryce, as a townsman, was very anxious that the royal train should not pass through Newtown without an opportunity being given to many of the townspeople of having a glimpse of our future king and his suite. In reply to his father's first letter Sir Francis replied from Marlborough House, on the 14th April, as follows: I am desired by the Prince of Wales to acknow- ledge the receipt of your letter and to inform you in reply that if after consultation with the railway authorities he finds that they will have no objec- tion it will give his Royal Highness much pleasure to direct that his special train shall slow down when passing through Newtown on the occasion of his visit to Wales" (applause). Then on April 18th, writing from Sandringbam, Sir Francis said :â The Great Western Railway authorities inform me, in reply to my letter, that they will make arrangements for running the special train at reduced speed when passing through the Newtown Railway Station en route for Plas Alachyniletti (cheers). Continuing, the hon. member said it would be observed that the letters were dated April, and the reason why Sir Pryce had not made public before the contents of those letters was because he was waiting for the committee appointed by their energetic Urban District Council to meet so that he might pass tbe lettersotl to fehem for their in via- tiou. At Sir Pryce's request he begged to say that whatever steps that committee thought proper to adopt Sir Pryce, as also he (the speaker) as a member of that committee, would be only too pleased to co-operate with them, in the matter (cheers). There was no doubt that they as Welsh- men would do their duty on the occasion, when the Prince would receive what had been referred to over and over again a real royal Welsh welcome (hear, hear, and applause). Mr W. F. THOMAS next gave the Army, Navy, and Auxiliary Forces," and Mr WILLIAMSON, of the Manchester district, suitably replied. Mr EDWARD POWELL submitted, in a humor- ous manner, the toast of The Order of Druids." He remarked that before coming to that meeting he enquired of an old lady friend what he might say in case he was called on to speak, and she replied that the Druids were good old substantial Welshmenâ(laughter and applause)âaud he was bound to confess that he could not find a better definition of their excellent order (loud applause). That it was good hardly anyone could be found to dispute the fact,-(hear, hear)-its grand object being the alleviation of distress (loud and continued applause). The administration of their funds were patent to all wherever the Order had a habita- tion, as in Newtown. He was glad to find that some of the most influential among their body intended to extend these excellent objects. He re- ferred, of course, to their anticipating legislaitve action of providing for old age (applause). Anyone who had had any experience of the administration of our poor law could not, he thought, fail to come to the conclusion that iq rich and prosperous and charitable England it was lamentable to see the dull cold walls of our Workhouses, in which were habited principally old people who were there for the sole reason that age prevented them maintaining their own fireside (applause). He would not attempt to say how old the Order of Druids was, but he did not think it was as old as those heathen worshippers from which they took their name. Nevertheless, it was an old Order, and those assem- bled around that table also knew how substantial it was (hear, hear). He was glad that the Order was strong both financially and numerically (hear, hear). The speaker next referred to the after- noon's drive, and went on to say that the Hector of KerryâRev. 0. A. Nares-in the course of a letter pointed out that the Druids would doub leas notice that the churchyard was circular, and that that was a fair inference'that it was an old Drains'^ worship- ping place, the Druids in olden times being in the habit of worshipping and burying their dead in circular plots of ground. That fact reminded him that a. circle had no end. They knew the beginning of their Order, and he hoped, like a. circle, it would have no end (loud cheers). They were, as Welsh- man, delighted to see the A.M.D. in this home of their Order, and they were the more charmed because they had conferi-ed such honour upon their highly esteemed townsman (cheers). It was with very grent pleasure that years agoâho believed soon after the Order was established in Ne.vtown he had the honour of presiding at their annual meet- in?, but he could assure them that that honour was noVso great as it, was that evening to sit there as an ordinary guest by his old and esteemed friendâ Mr. Ellison (cheers). He \*as afraid that he had 'broken the injunction of the toast, but'he now gave, from the depth of his heart, the Order of Druids (loud applause). Mr G. HIGH AM, G.T., responded, and remarked that so far as the Order of Druids was concerned, whether of Welsh origin or not at any rate they professed to be Britons (applause). If they had not existed a number of centuries he kcew lodges which could show (heir dispensation to extend back to a period of 130 years (loud applause). The speaker afterwards referred to the various principles of the Order, some of which were not possessed by other societies, end also to the worth of Mr Ellison as a grand officer of the Order. On behalf of the Druids he most sincerely thanked the Chair- man for attending their meeting that chlY (loud applause). As in the past so in the future they would go on endeavouring to strengthen their society, introducing inro it the best principles that it was possible to suggest. Mi HAUGHTON (P.G.M.) next proposed the Members of the Board of Management," coupled with the name of Mr G. H. Ellison (the Grand Master), who replied, stating that it had been a real pleasure to him to preside over the Board of Management during the past year. He was much obliged to the brothers and to the gentlemen who were not directly connected with the Order for their presence that evening, and he personally thanked the chairman and vice-chairman for the inconvenience they had subjected themselves and their families to by so kindly attending that evening (cheers). The toast of "The Past Grand Officers" was given by Mr J. H. WHEELHOUSE (V.G.M.), who associated with the toast the name of Mr Mellor (P.G.M.). The VICE-CHAIRMAN, in giving The Town and Trade of Newtown," assured the meeting cf the pleasure it gave him to be present that evening, and it did his heart good (cheers). Be always took great interest in those who were willing to help themselves. Mr Dawson next referred to the industries of the town, with Sir Pryce Pryce-Jones as the pioneer, and he was sure they were all glad to find that their popular chairman that evening was a worthy successor (loud applause). There was no doubt that Pryee-J ones" was the key-mark of the trade of Newtown (hear, hear). The CHAIRMAN, in responding, thanked his vis a for the very complimentary way in which he had spoken of his (the hon. member's) father and the family generally. Newtown of late years had been in a somewhat depressed state, both as regarded manufacture and, but in a less degree, agriculture. As a director of one of the principal firms of the town, and also of a local manufacturing company, he was bound to confess that he thought they had reached the bottom of the low-water line. As regarded the chances of making the manufactur- ing industry in Newtown pay, he had every confi- dence that by industry, fair luck, and good fortune, that there was in store for Newtown another tide of prosperity (applause). He took that opporunity of congratulating his friend upon the success which this great Order had made in that small townâthe Leeds of Wales (laughter). And he could assure him that it was not often that in Newtown thev could make themselvesâor attempt, to make them- selves-so hospitable and agreeable as he hoped they had been on that occasion (applause). It had been an attempt, and he only hoped that the delegates would enjoy themselves equally as much as they in Newtown had in the presence of their pleasant faces and company (cheers). He again thanked them for the generous way in which they had received the toast, and he hoped that their best wishes would in a few years be achieved (loud applause). Mr F. W. Cooke gave The Oswestry Equalised District of the Order of Druids," to which Mr W. Lewis replied, after which Mr J. Eaton submitted the toast of Kindred Societies." The toasts of "The Chairman" and "Vice-chairman" were enthusiastically received, as was also that of The Press," submitted by Mr Evan Humphreys. The toast list was interspersed with items of music contributed by Messrs Trow, Barrett, Humphreys, and Evan Jones, whilst recitations were given by Messrs Pickles and O'Dowd. A very enjoyable time was spent by all, the meeting ter- minating at mid-night. WEDNESDAY'S PROCEEDINGS. The sitting of the Annual Moveable Delegation was resumed at the Public Hall, Newtown, on Wed- nesday. Mr G. H. Ellison, the Grand Master, again presided, and in his opening remarks claimed the indulgence of the delegates on behalf of the local committee, who had arranged for a trip in the after- noon to Aberystwyth.âMr J. Eaton, 0f Stockton- on-Tees, remarked that whilst not desiring to frustrate the local arrangements, he desired to pro- test against the serious extent to which of late the arrangements and pleasure had interfered with the despatch of business. They were sent there as delegates to sit certain hours defined by the rules for the full and careful transaction of their business, and repeated adjournments for the afternoon in- evitably resulted in undue pressure and haste dur- ing the concluding hours of the sitting. Although he had DO desire to interfere with exist- ing arrangements, he desired to have placed on record that the delegation would in future adhere to the hours of business provided for in the constitutional rules, and local committees would then provide accordingly. Sa.Iford was the first to commence it, followed by Nottingham, Macclesfield and Sheffield. Now Newtown was eclipsing all (loud applause).âThe Grand Master expressed general sympathy with Mr Eaton's observations, but added that the local com- mittee had not arranged for the entertainment of the delegates until reasonably satisfied that the agenda was of such a nature as to justify it.âMr Eaton insisted on pressing jjjg resolution as a guide for the future. After further discussion, Mr Mellor (Crewe) moved the previous question, which was carried by a large majority Considerable time was occnpied in the revision of rules, and the first recommendation suggested the alteration of the third clause of the objects of the order for assisting members when compelled to travel in search of employment. It was proposed to add to this clause t-he words "on condition that the lodge or district desiring. to a.vail themselves of this clause have adopted 0ne or other of the graduated tables contained in the constitutional rules, and that a fund be raised for that purpose,Sin addition to the monthly payments charged by the said tables. The effect of this amendment was the provision by special subscription of a fund for the purpose, so as not to interfere with the sick and funeral funds.âAfter considerable discussion, the proposition was carried by a lar niajority.-A second proposition from the Stockton-on-Tees dis- trict amending rule 20 by inflicti^LVn secretaries of districts or lodges neglecting to forward in proper form nominations for grand officers and the Committee of Management, and providing that such neglect should not disqualify the nomination having been ully considered was agreed to unanimously. The Stockton-on-Tees district proposal, that a comlllittoe be elected to revise the constitutional codes of rules, was de- ferred to a later stage of the proceedings.-An amendment to rule 24, proposed by the Willan district, provided in the election of auditors that the junior auditor should become senior each year, the senior auditor retiring and a new junior auditor being elected, was agreed to after a prolonged dis- cussion.âOn the motion of Mr Clayton, G.J.A., it was resolved to suspend standing orders for the day. VISIT TO ABERYSTWYTH. On Wednesday the delegates, together with a large number of friends, paid a vIsiT to Aberyst- wyth, accompanied by the Newtowu Silver Band. A lunch had been provided at the Lion Royal Hotel, which was presided over by ]\jr Griffiths, Mayor, and he was supported by ^jr q Ellison, of Newtowu, the Grand Master of the Order, Mr Higham, the Grand Treasurer, and others. The MAYOR on rising to welcome the delegates was received with loud cheers. lie had beon a member of the Oddfellows for thirty years, but had never had a cent. out of it and hOIH'd that he never would (hear, hear). He understood that the delegates came from all pari.g 0f England and he hoped that they would be indnced to* visit Aberystwyth again. The view from the Castle point was extremely fine, and in the name of the Corporation he welcomed them to the town (hear, hear). Mr ELLISON said that he would call upon Mr Higham, the Grand Treasurer, to reononfi Mr HIGnAM sdd that it was with extreme pleasure that he rose to conform with the request of their esteemed Grand Master to jgc a vote cf thanks to his Worship the Mayor of 4berystwyth for presiding at that gathering that afternoon. They recognised in their nlrioQS meetings in Afferent parts of the country the condescension of gentlemen of the Mayor's position coming amongst them and deeming them worthy of recognition. They were endeavouirng to the besfc Qf their humble abilities to educate the general community in thrift, ioretnought, and care for the future to use a homely term, preparing for a rainy day. They Uintfc, ioretnought, and care for the future to use a homely term, preparing for a rainy aay' They also believed that iu addition to encouraging thrift they also made the members better citizens (hear, hear). They understood law they had their own laws, they were governed by laws, and were willing to submit to their laws, conseliientlv they were well-governed members of. society. Tho chair- man of the Royal Commission to enquire into the workings of the Friendly Societies of this country, Sir Stafford Northcoce, said that not only did those people do well for themSe}veg; but there was no doubt from what he had learned that they were saving the rest of the commailj|.v 8omethius like £ 2,500,000 in charges of poor rat(,s'(flear, hear). If that was the ease twenty-five years ago it was not too much to say that that sum \vas now nearly doubled; in any case their number were much greater and their funds were much larger. He had inunh pleasure in proposing the vote of thanks to the Mayor (cheers). In reply, the M AYOR said that he had enjoyed himself very much that afternoon. After lunch the band played for daucing on the Castle grounds, and the excursion started back at 7-30 p.m. THURSDAYS PROCEE]}INGS. Mr G. H. Ellison, presided agaiQ on Thursday, there being a full attendance of delegates.âMr Pickes (London) brought forward a motion to reduce the number of grand officers reriring annually to three which waslost.âlIr-Foster(Rother- ham), on behalf of the Board of Management, moved to alter the rules as to the admission of members, so as to allow of admitting children of one year old.âMr Mellor was of op;njon that if the motion was carried they should not retain the pro- hibitory clause, that in no case should a member be initiated for a'less sum than one shilling, and the suggestion was accepted by the proposer.- Several delegates enquired as to whether children should become ordinary members without passing medical examination later on.- -Sir R. V. Clayton (Manchester) thought it would be a hard case if they were not allowed to.âThe motion was agreed to.âThe next business was to define as to grants to districts for opening new lodges at a distance from their registered offices.Tije Grand Master said there had been an expression of opinion made at the meeting of the Board of Management, as to the object for which the money should be granted, and it was generally conceded by that meeting that it was to establish Jodges in localities that were to become a nuch as of a new district. Al'wr considerable discussion, Mr Biaekourn (l-eerb) proposed, and Mr Mellor seconded, that it was the opinion of this delegation that in the matter of grants for extension purposes the discretion of the Board of Management is to be consulted and that it. was a direction from that delegation that relief should be granted every applicant for any purpose coming within the true tneauintr of extension.âMr Bawsor (Derby) proposed an amendment" that all existing districts and lodges undertaking extension work at a distance of five miles from their central offices shall have a claim on the extension fund." Tli3 amendment was carried by a large majority. The GRAND TREASURER then introduced a discussion upon the old age pension scheme as adopted by the Board of Management. One of the greatest difficulties in the matter of old age pensions was the question of state aid. He did not agree with Major Pryce-Jones or anyone else, who said they pensioned the soldier and so on, aud should therefore pension others. Mr Higham deprecated State aid with the risk of accompanying State interference, and proposed a system of weekly subscriptions, which, on the basis of 2d. a week from the age of 16, provided that the accumulated funds were invested to earn 5 per cent, should yield 5s. a week after the age of 65, and a return of 75 per cent of subscriptions paid in the event of the death of a member before reaching that age. He proposed to obtain the 5 per cent by means of a co-operative loan society for members only, and to raise a small fund for working it by means of a draw of lottery, which he calculated should realise from P,2,000 to £ 3,000. Mr J. EATON formally moved that the scheme suggested by the grand treasurer be adopted by the .1, delegation. Mr DICKENS seconded. Mr WALKER moved an amendment to the fol- lowing effect:â" That whilst recognising the desirability of members making prevision for old age, thi delegation is of opinion that the scheme propounded by the Board of Management is not practicable, and that this delegation hereby affirms that no scheme will be satisfactory that does not embody state aid and also provide for existing membership of friendly societies." He said that a loan society had been alluded to in the scheme, and it was to be called a co-operative loan society. He called it the Druidical Loan and Discount Society (laughter.) It would be the insolvent members, the insolvent lodges, and the insolvent districts that would be the borrowers from the society. In the town where the grand treasurer live i there were thousands who would join the Druids to-morrow in order to borrow L- 5. They (the delegates) were the individuals who would have to contribute the capital, and they were the individuals who could not parti- cipate in. that scheme because of their age No scheme was satisfactory unless it touched the pre- sent membership of their order. He would deny that state aid would destroy their societies. Pauperism over 65 years of age was on the increase in the country. In the great race of life in the commercial world they would find that employers were more apt to get rid of the older men than they were 50 years ago. Those men who were turned adrift bad done as much for England in their way as any of their statesmen, soldiers or sailots. The Duke of Cambridge and others took their pensions without any idea of pauperism, and others had as much right to take their pensions in the same way. It was an undeniable iact that various friendly societies in the land were not solvent, and it was because of the drain upon their funds by brethren who had passed the age of 65. The Grand Treasurer had pointed out different statements upon Old Age Pensions by Mr Chamberlain. He thought it an injustice to that statesman (hear, hear). A man when he made a will generally two or three years after- wards altered it. It was the second and last that was valid, and that was the case with Mr Chamber- lain, and the old scheme referred to by the Grand Treasurer had been thrown over long ago. He would read them the last scheme of Mr Chamber- lain's, not last year, but twelve months last December:â" My proposal is that in return for the cordial assistance of these societies in the great national work of providing for old age, and in recognition of the services which they have already rendered to the people of this country the Govern- ment should enter into'partnership with them in regard to this subject, and that, it should offer to halve the expense with them of carrying this move- ment to a successful conclusion, and that when they are willing and able to secure to their members a small pension of 2s 6d a week in their old age, the Government should step in and should meet their efforts by an equal contribution, which would make the pension up to5sa week (applause). They heard years and years ago, and oft repeated by the Grand Treasurer aud ottier people since, of what these societies had done in regard to the saviftg effected in the rates. Many of them had been told that week, even by their Grand Treasurer, that Sir Stafford Northcote (the late Earl Iddlesleigh) in 1865 said that these societies saved the country no less than two and a half million pounds per annum. They believed it. But coming a little later down. These societies had made considerable progress since 1865, and he came to another Chancellor of the Exchequer who nob many years ago stated that these societies were saving this country 19,000,000 upon the assessment. He therefore said that in consideration of what they had done in the past, df what they were doing at present, and in view of what they were going to do and would do, they ought to have some favourable consideration at the hands of the Government (applause). The P.G.M. of the Mai-chester Unity bad declared that in receipt of assistance from the State there should be no oF and no loss of civil rights (loud applause). A member of f arliament (Mr Straehey) had s-aid that Old Age Pensions should be administered by Boards of Guardians. For himself, and he hoped he voiced the opinions of every member connected with the Friendly Societies of Great Britain, he said they would have nothing to do with Boards of Guardians or relieving officers (cheers). They would go direct to the Treasury (renewed cheers). They would not go pleading and cringing for it. but would ask foi' it as a right that the friendly societies should be the medium through which the money should pass from the State to those entitled to it, (bear, hear, and applause). He thought that those who advocated State aid had some reason to be gratified by the progress which the principle had made during the last four or five years. During the last General Election the majority of the candi- dates favourably alluded to it in their speeches and addresses, and he was pleased to think that the present House of Commons contained 359 members pledged to support a scheme of State aid pensions (loud applause). The Grand Treasurer had alluded to the Manchester Unity of Oddfellows as being opposed to State aid. He would state without fear of contradiction that nobody had yet had from any previous A.M.C. authority to speak on behalf of the members. Because a man occupied an official position he had no right to voice his personal opinion as that of the Order to which he was con- nected, and say, like the men of Tooley streetâ (Iauwhter)- We are opposed to it (hear, hear, and applause). London had sent 27 delegates to the A.M.C. at Bristol this week, and of that num- ber 23 were going to vote in favour of State aid (cheers). This fact was very interesting when thev considered that London in the past had been the backbone of the opposition (hear, fhear). In conclusion, he appoaled to them, as working men, who were doing their very utmost to provide for the rainy day, to think not only of themselves but those poor individuals who did not: earn so much money as they did (cheers.) It had been proved by the Royal Commission that of the occupiers of the Workhouses over 65 years of age. there was not ten per cent. who had gone there through improvident habits. He again hoped they would do their best to bring about a system of Old Age Pensions so t hat\ old men, after arrivine at the age when it was lm- possible to do more work, should not have to spend their remaining days at the wretched Workhouse. but that thev should live under their own vine and fio- tree, breathing the atmosphere of sweet liberty (loud cheers.) Mr O'DOWD. in seconding the areumdmenf, con- gratulated the last, speaker upon having converted him to the principle of State-aid. He might say that the man who was not open to conviction was a fool (hear, hear and applause.) The scheme met with some severe criticism, and in the result a resolution affirming that no scheme would be'satisfactory which did not embody the principle of State aid. and also provide for existing members of friendly societies, was unanimously agreed to. MISCELLANEOUS. The Board of Management proposed that the limits of grants from the accident compensation fund should be increased from £ 20 to £ J3 and £ oD to £ 100. Mr Wheelhouse, .G.M., moved a resolu- tion accepting the alteration, but after a long debate it was resolved that the rule remain unal- tered.âThe Bristol district, having opened two lodges at Cardiff, obtained leave to change its name to "The Bristol and South Wales district." The delegation then proceeded to the election of officers. Mr J. H. Wheelhouse, V.G.M., of Stockton-on-Tees, was unanimously elected Grand Master, and Mr Thomas Newman, of Birmingham, was appointed ice Grand Master by a large majority. Mr G. Higham, "Tatichestet-incl MrJ. Westall. Manchester, were unanimously elected Grand Treasurer and Grand Secretary. Mr W. Haughton, Crewe, was re- elected senior auditor, and MrJ. T. Foster (Rother- ham) was appointed junior auditor. There were three vacancies on the Board of Management, for which there were nine candidates, and after several votings the choice fell on Mr ,T. Bourn (Newcastle), Mr T Pielcs (London), and Mr William Bawser (Derby). The delegation accepted a very cordial invitation to hold their next meeting at Stockton- on-Tees. Levies of ld for the management fund and Id for the accident compensation fund were unanimously voted, and after the formal investment of the grand officers with their chains of office, votes of thanks brought the proceedings to a close

OSWESTRY.

MEIFOD.