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ABERGAVENNY TOWN COUNCIL.

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ABERGAVENNY TOWN COUNCIL. Success of the Allotments Scheme. I COUNCILLOR PALiVlER RESIGNS. The mou!. air mating 01 the Aberg^\ Town Council was held 0:1 Monday evening^ tne Mayor (Alderman Z. Wheatley) presiding. T,iere were also present Councillors P. Tellord. T, A. Delafield, J. Tong. W. Horsington, G, R, Viowmau, F. J Maustield, F, Sadler, Graham and W. J. Meale. I Local Men's Distinctions. The Mavor mentioned that since the last meeting Major Mills, sou of Mr. F. Mills, 01 Llwyndu, had been awarded the Military Cross, and that Flight Sub-Lieut. Harold Day, son of Mr and Mrs. W. J. Day, had been awarded the Distinguished Service Cross in connection v.^ih the Royal Naval Air Service. He moved that they tender to the recipients and their relatues their congratulations on the honour conferred upon thtim and the honour they had conferred on the town The votv v»as carried. « For King and Country. I The Maror r-icrred to the death o. oappei 'Nl,Cartl,.v, wlio well known at Abergavenny, and who had laid down his life for his King and country and had lift behind a widoNN- and a large family, and he moved that they tender to the widow and family the sympathy of the Council in the loss they had sustained, and that the same be recorded on the minutes. Councillor Hote-ingtou, as one- who v. orK^eu alongside Sapper McCarthy in years gone bv, seconded the proposition, wnicn was carritd in silence. Free Fishing I Councillor G: suggested that they should ask. the Government, either through Lord Rhondda, or their M.P.. or the Prime Minister, to move in the matter of opening the rivers for to Inove in t, the purpose of taking fresh water fish in view of the great shortage of food. Councillor Delafield suggested that the matter snould be referred to the Sanitary and Water Committee. liat there was no Councillor Tel: -rd said that there was no necessity for it t, come before the Sanitary and Water Committee. He thought they were all agreed as to the necessity of increasing the food of the country by any means they could. The Mayor said that it should go before the committee first of all. but they could deal with it at the end of the meeting by suspending the standing orders. Welcome Approval. letter was reau tin* Abergavenny Study Circle viewing with satisfaction the steps being -i ttie steps being taken by the Town Council to improve the housing accommodation for the working classes, congratulating the Council on falling into line with local efforts, and trusting that "each member of the Council who sought the true interests of the people would do his inmost to put a good housing scheme into operation. Councillor Palmer Resigns. n'. A letter was read irom councillor raimer Tegretting that as a direct consequence of the attitude displayed by those constituting the deputation received by the special meeting of the Town Council 0:1 the previous Monday, he was left with no other alternative than to resign his position as a member of the Town Council. This decision had not been come to hastily, but after most careful and deliberate consideration. He should ahyavs look back with pride and pleasant recollections to the period during which he was associated with the administration of the government of their ancient borough, and especially the association with colleagues with wiiom there was not one note of discord, but the most harmonious relations, notwithstanding their differences 0:1 methods of policy. His interest in the welfare of the town and all that appertained thereto was not impaired. Councillor Tong moved that the acceptance of the resignation be deferred. The Town Clerk said that the resignation was not complete yet. and there was the liability of the fine to be considered. Councillor Tong said he did not want to speak on it then, but he thought they should deal with it in committee. I Coke A Reduced Price-Perhaps. On the Gas Committee's minutes Councillor Horsingtcn asked what was the stock of coke at the Gas Works. Councillor Delafield 70 or So tons The Gas Manager said he estimated it at 85 tons. Councillor Tong said that he was at a gas works in the immediate neighbourhood that day where there was quite ten times that amount of coke in stock. The committee's report stated that a letter was read from the Coal Controller of Mines calling attention to the big quantity of coke in stock at the works and asking for steps to be taken to dispose of it and to keep down the stock in future. The Manager was authorised to deal with the matter with a view to selling quantities in the country, and thus keep the stock down. Councillor Meale You are thinking of selling it outside the borough. Are you going to sell it at a reduced rate to the people in the town before you sell it to outsiders ? I move that it be referred back for consideration. Councillor Delafield said that the7 Manager was given instructions to sell the coke to the best advantage he could. That did not mean to say that the coke was going to be sacrificed. The committee had given the Manager the right to sell coke outside the borough so that outsiders would hav'? a chance to purchase it, but not at a reduced price. The committeern deavouring to study the welfare of the gas works and make the most they possibly could so as to trv to cover the expense of the cost of the coal. Councillor Meale You are not going to sell it outside cheaper than you sell it in the town; Councillor Delafield No The Mayor If there is any preference it will be given to townspeople. Councillor Delafield said that if they found that they could not dispose of the coke other- wise, they would do as they had done bdore- advertise it at a less price. If they had sold to outsiders they would not have had this accumu- lation. If it was not disposed c: he would see that the townspeople had it at a reduced price. Gas Quality and Leakages. I The Gas Committee also reported that the Manager stated that the quality of the gas was partly due to the retorts showing signs of cracks. Councillor Telford said he should like to ask, in view of the serious leakages, what steps had been taken to put the .retorts in order. If they lost It there as well as in the mains they were going to be faced with a worse position than they were before. Councillor Delafield said that if it was neces- sary to have the retorts thoroughly repaired and overhauled the Gas Committee would carry it through. The committee had been anxious not to spend more money than was necessary on the retorts, because the expenses were heavy and they wanted to keep within the margin. The -Gas Manager was still faced with the difflucltv of shortage of labour to see to the leakages. Councillor Telford said that they knew the serious loss they had in leakages last year. Councillor Delafield said that when the chair- man of a committee answered a question his answer should be taken and he should not be cross-questioned again. Councillor Telford said tnat he did not bunk he had exceeded his rights. The Reservoir. The minutes of the Sanitary and u ater Com- mittee stated that the Surveyor reported the completion of the lioseing and washing-down of the reservoir. During the whole of December and J anuary a continuous now of water had been going into and out of the reservoir in order to prevent the inlet and washout pipes freezing. The water was now being emptied from the reservoir, as the recent fall of snow brought down with it a large quantity of filth, and the refilling commenced on the 23rd of January. Councillor Sadler" asked if they were to expect a ouantity of filth to go into the reservoir with every fall of snow. It seemed to him that the reservoir was a large amount of expense and it did not bring in much return. Every month thev had something wrong with it. councillor Telford said that there was always a certain amount of soot or black matter which came down with the snow, and it was just as well, as they could afford to do it and they had plenty of water, that they should have the reservoir thoroughly cleaned before filling, so that the â water would be clean and wholesome. Streets Committee and Gwatkins' Land. I The Streets Committee reported that they I bad decided to make application to the Housing Committee for permission to view the land rc- centlv acquired by the Council, with a view to becoming tenants of the same, other than the portion retained by the committee for allotments. Councillor Graham said that the committee had taken over the fields which were to remain unbroken, and they hoped to make a substantial profit on them. The Letting of the Park. On the Markets Committee's report, Councillor Graham asked what was the attitude of the com- mittee with regard to the letting of the Park in future. lie did not ask in any sense of criticism, but only to know what the committee intended to do. Councillor Plowman said that the committee had not made any rule at all, but they considered every application as it came in. The applica- tion of the Football War ReEd Committee for the Castle on Easter Mondav and Tuesday, and the Park on the latter day, was deferrred until the next meeting so that the members of the Council could have an opportunity of consider- ing it. Food Contra! Couiloillor Horsington and In- creased Energy. Councillor Telford asked whether there had been anv replv from the Ministry of Food to the application of the Council to increase the mem- bership of the Food Control Committee by three members. The Town Clerk said that there had been no reply vet. The "Mayor There is no reason why it can't be done, if vou wish. Councillor Plowman said that he noticed that in another district the Food Controller had given permission to increase the committee by three members Councillor Telford said he was not at all anxious to serve on the committee, especially after certain remarks that were made at the special meeting of the Council. Unfortunately at that meeting the members of the Council decided that thc-v would say nothing, and he did not say anything, but at the same time he did not think it was right for anyone to say that perhaps they did not represent the burgesses in the sense "that they ought to do, seeing that there had been no election since 1913 As far as he was concerned it was not his fault, and probably he might not have been on the Council if there had been an election. He had tried to do his duty as far as he possibly could in these trving times. He was not an expert on food, but he had done his best. and, with all respect to the deputation, he must ask them to accept his resignation on the Food Control Committee. Councillor Horsingtou said that the other night thev pledged themselves to the Mayor not to speak, and lie abided by that, but he felt that the time had come when he must express his opinions. It was very unfair to them, indeed. that they could not speak. He regretted that Councillor Palmer had written that letter and that he did not have a chance of replying at that meeting and that he had not had a chance at the present meeting. He was not going to adopt Councillor Palmer's attitude, because he was out to defend himself, and he thought he would be capable of doing it. The gentlemen who attended there had the privilege of saying what- ever thev liked, and he claimed the right of free speech. Their chairman suggested that they came before them to help them in every shape and form and that if their representatives were put on the Food Control Committee they would get good support from them, but within a very few minutes' they began to point out things which were untruthful and unfounded. Some of their accusations were entirely uncalled for. They were told that they had not been doing their duty, and that they were practically in- capable of doing anything at all, and that they wanted increased energy. He had attended over go per cent. of the meetings held by the Food Control Committee, and lie had attended at the Food Inspector's office as well to make various inquiries, and he resented any suggestion that lie required increased energy. As regarded the representation of the ratepayers, if they looked round the table they would see that fhe people were represented as fairly as it was possible for them to be, and he claimed that they who were on the Food Control Committee were equally representative. It was also pointed out to them that there should be representation of the Co-operative Society on the committee. If they remembered when the Food Control Com- mittee was put forward he proposed that a member of the Co-operative Society should be put on. He was ruled out because everyone who was a member of the Co-operative Society was, directly or indirectly, dealing with food- stuffs, and for that reason no member of the society was put on the committee. Therefore his conscience was clear as representing the 300 people who belonged to the Co-operative Society. They had been told that the Railwaymen's Union represented 500 members. The Mayor had already stated that Councillor Palmer was put on the committee as the labour representa- tive, and therefore he said that these people were represented Besides that there was another railwayman serving on the committee. The chairman of the deputation when he attended before the Council stated distinctly that they had not instituted a system for the butchers to issue tickets with the joints of meat they sold. The chairman of the delegates wanted a little bit of increased energy himself, because the Food Control Committee had passed it and it was in action on the ist of January that any person buying a joint of meat could have a ticket show- ing the price and weight of the joint in the form of a receipt. If there were people who were too negligent to ask the butcher to supply it, it was they who wanted increased energy and not the Food Control Committee. There were a lot of remarks made about food going out of the town. There was food also coming into the town. He could look back to the days when tradesmen and people of the town were very pleased to welcome purchasers of produce from the colliery districts. Abergavenny, by its geographical situation, was situated in the right place for receiving produce and distributing it. There was a suggestion that they should put a stop to food going out of the town, but he could not agree, and lie would take a lot of persuading that it was in the best interests of Abergavenny to shut the door on anything going outside. The tradesmen of the town knew their customers and knew who they had supplied in bygone years, and those people who had been purchasing there for many years certainly had a right to expect supplies from the same source as they had been used to getting them before the war. He would not resign from the Food Control Committee. WHe would stick to his guns, and he hoped, by fair judgment, to be able to do his duty in a fearless manner, and he hoped he should never be credited with lack of energy. I Councillor long moveu iiial ^ouncmor ilei- ford's resignation be deferred, and this was afterwards dealt with in committee in con- junction with Councillor Palmer's resignation. Councillor Meale said he could not follow what Councillor Horsingtou had said. He did not believe in criticism and would deny the right to the deputation to criticise him. but he criticised them. When he (Councillor Meale) spoke about food going out of the town he did not refer to the hucksters, but to the large number of others who were coming down and sloping off stuff from the shops. Last Friday morning there were about too down with one train, and on Saturday morning it was the same. Those were the people who ought to be stopped. Allotments: A Gratifying Report. I The Allotments Committee submitted a report and balance sheet in connection with the allot- ments at Llanfoist, and this showed a balance in hand of .£2 10s. 4d allowing for the value of the stock on hand. A profit of £ 2 14s. was made on the sale of seed potatoes, and this was used towards the cost of a spraying machine and material, whicu amounted to £4 4s. The ma- 0 4 4s. The ma- terial and machine did not arrive until the season w"s nearly over, and only 2s. lid. was received from the sale of material, but it was anticipated that a large quantity would be used this season. The committee considered the recommendations of the judges last year that three prizes should be given, and it was resolved to give prizes of 12s. Od ios., and 7s. 6d. The Borough Surveyor produced plans showing the proposed new allotments and he was instructed to peg cut the same in 6 perch plots (180 sq. yds.) It was resolved that the price of the unbroken ground be is. 3d. per perch for the first year, payable in advance, and that in the second year the rental be increased to id. per square yard. Mr. Percy Fraser made application for "three acres of laud Oil the new allotments, for the pur- pose cf seed production, but the application was not acceded to. Councillor To :g said that the Allotments Com- mittee were to be congratulated on their work. This was a case where some energy had been shown, and the results could be seen. He hoped that the additional plots would not be enough to meet the demand. Councillor Graham said that the allotments at Llanfoist had not only been successful from a production point of view, but also financially. It proved that if that Council, or any other Council, would only take their courage in both hands and not be afraid to deal with the people's needs, they could do good work. There were some who were averse to taking up that work, but here was a proof of what could be done by energy and enthusiasm. With regard to the new land they had taken, all the 112 plots had been taken up, and they were in a position to have another 20 plots, which would make 132 plots altogether. It was a good thing that they took their courage in both hands last year and did this work, with the consequence that Aber- gavenny could not only produce what it re- quired, but could afford to spare food to those outside who could not produce enough for them- selves. What they did last year was nothing to what they hoped to be able to do this year. Councillor Sadler said that, as a member of the Allotments Committee, he was pleased to see the balance sheet brought before the Council. The small balance showed that they had given the plot-holder all the benefit t hey could. They had put their house in order and they had shown the public an account of their stewardship. He was sure that they would give every benefit to the townspeople from the new allotments. Local Rationing. I Councillor Delafield said that Lord Rhondda had stated that it was hoped that the whole of the couutry would be rationed for certain articles, such as butter, margarine, tea and bacon, on the lines of the scheme at Birmingham. He asked if the Food Control Committee had taken this matter into consideration. The Mayor said it was all in hand, and the printed matter was about to be issued. Cards were to be issued on the same lines as the sugar cards to deal with tea, butter and margarine, and the scheme would be compulsory on the 25th of February. Councillor Delafield That comes from the Government ? The Mayor Yes. Councillor Delafield: So you are doing it at Abergavenuy ? The Mayor Yes. We can't do it without permission. Each town has to get their own cards printed. Councillor Meale said that the absence of a rationing scheme was the principal complaint of the deputation. Barley, Brewing, and Pigs. Councillor Graham said he should like to know I whether the Town Clerk had received a coii- munieation with regard to the order dealing with J the feeding of cattle, sheep and pigs, and he would like to know if it was not time to make some protest in regard to this matter. The order provided that pigs were to be left out to grass during the summer months, It was hanlly fair, in view of the fact that that day at Aber- gavenny cartloads of barley were hauled to a brewer's to be used for malt, although it could not be obtained for the production of a food which was absolutely necessary. He was not speaking as a total abstainer, or Prohibitionist, but from a common-sense point of view. It seemed very unwise to give facilities for making drink, which was not so essential, and to deprive others of a food which was essential. They had altered local conditions so that people could keep pigs, and then the people who were taking ad- vantage of it were deprived of the stuff to feed them with, though they were continually told I that the food position was going to get worse. Some protest needed to be made to the illogical people who were responsible for these things. ,i gree d wit li Councillor Mansfield said he quite agreed with Councillor Graham and said lie knew of cases of cottagers who had had to dispose of pigs because they could not get feeding stuffs, while on the they coiil('t not other hand they could see the stuffs practically destroyed. Councillor Horsington asked if the Council could not pass a resolution and send it to the right quarter. Councillor Tong Not unless we take their job off them. The Mayor suggested that the question might be considered by the Food Control Committee, and this was agreed to. I â

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