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CARDIGANSHIRE COUNTY COUNCIL. ABERAYRON LIGHT RAILWAY. A special meeting of the Cardiganshire County Council was held at Lampeter Town Hall on Thursday, December 8th. There were present Councillor R. S. Rowland, Garth, chairman; Aldermen Vaughan Davies, M.P., Tanybwlch; 1>. Lewis Jones, Esgerhendy; E. J. Price, Llansantffraid; W. J. Lloyd, Nantcwn- lie; David Evans, Llanwnen; R. J. R. Loxdale, Castle Hill; Councillors D. C. Roberts, G. F. Roberts, Aberystwyth; J. Jones, Cwmere; Captain Jenkin Thomas, New Quay; E. Lima Jones, J. M. Howell, Aberavron; J. C. Harford, Fal- condale; Lodwick Jones 2 Nantcwnlle; E. A. L. Powell, Rhydfyrian; Major J. J. Bonsall, Fronfraith; Sir Edward Pryse, Gogerddan; Major Price Lewes, Tyglyn Aeron; Dr Jenkyn Lewis, Llanon; Mor- gan Evans, Oakford; B. Davies-Evans, Bwlchbychan Principal Bebb Lampeter; Josiah R. Jones, Llandyssul; Messrs Evan Evans, clerk; and J. D. Perrott, trea- surer. The meeting was specially convened to receive the report of Mr Vaughan Davies, M.P., on his negotiations with the Board of Trade and the Great West- ern Company regarding the construc- tion of a siding at Penwern on the Lampeter and Aberayron Light Rail- way. Mr East, representing the Great Western Company, and Mr Yockney, engineer of the light railway, were pre- sent. Mr Vaughan Davies said he had as re- quested interviewed representatives of the Board of Trade and Great Western Company. He went to the Board of Trade first. as they were the masters of the situation. If the Board refused to allow a siding on a gradient of one in forty, that would have settled the mat- ter. He asked the Board to say defin- itely whether, like the laws of the Medes and Persians, they altered not, or whether they would allow a siding on the gradient. The Board's representatives replied that they had allowed many sid- ings y>n a similar gradient and would consider any suggestion laid before them by the Light Railway Company. He wrote for confirmation of the interview and received a reply from Mr W. F. Mar- wood, of the Board of Trade, dated Nov- ember 21st, stating that he was writing to the Great Western Company pointing out that when he wrote to Mr J. Jones on October 17th he only stated that the Board would not refuse to consider any suggestions submitted to them by the Light Railway Company and that no such proposals "had so far reached them. The letter showed, Mr Davies added, that the Board were willing to enter- tain a proposal. Before receiving the letter, he had an interview with Mr Inglis, of the Great Western Co., Mr. Potter, and another gentleman who had gone over the line. When he explained to Mr Inglis the real position of affairs, he said he would do all he could. After corresponding with the Board of Trade, Mr inglis wrote to him as follows on November 23rd:—"I have your letter of yesterday m which you inform me that you have inquired of the Board of Trade and have been told that the Great Wes- tern Company have made no proposals with respect to the siding jjt Penwern. I would like to remind you that I came under no promise to make any proposal to the Board of Trade. All that I under- took to do was to ask for some explan- ation of the true inwardness of Mr Marwood's letter to Mr Jones. This I have done and I have before me at the moment Mr Marwood's reply. In tdiat reply, Mr Marwood simply refers me to the Board of Trade standard require- ments and reiterates the willingness of the Board on the basis of these require- ments to consider any proposals that the Light Railway Company may put before the Department. As was explained, when yo*, were here, the standard re- quirements of the Baord of Trade re- quire provision to be made for side- tracking of any train doing work in con- nection with a siding on a steeper grade than one in 260. This provision can be made in one or two or three ways; but in any case it would involve additional ex- pense of a substantial character both in respect of capital and working. It is im- possible for the Great Western Company to move further in the matter, particu- larly in view of t'he fact that no repre- sentations have been made by the Light Railway Company themselves. If the Light Railway Company are desirous of making provision at Penwern, and inas- much as the construction ot the line ia entirely in their hands, it is for them to satisfy the Board of Trade and they must do what is necessary. Meanwhile, I would only say that it is not the case that the Great Western Company have in any way opposed the provision of the de- sired accommodation, nor have they from the first weighted the light railway with any requirements which are not abso- utely reasonable and necessary. On the contrary, 1 went considerably out of my way in negotiating the agreement to offer the light railway the most favour- able terms possible, although I had to reoognise from the first, and did not hesitate to say so, that in my judgment the traffic prospects of the line were--very poor." Mr Davies added that he afterward had correspondence with Mr. Harford, but found that he took on himself more powers than lie was entitled to. He was, however, so anxious to clear up the matter that he wrote to Mr Harford offering, if the siding was made in twelve months from the date of Mr Har- ford's reply, that the money would be handed over or to leave six members selected by the County Council to decide whether there should be a siding or not. Mr Harford did not reply and, on re- turning from London, he (Mr Davies) went to see the Clerk with wrhom were the Treasurer and Mr D. C. Roberts and they had a conversation. The Clerk was of opinion, alt'hough it was not his (the speaker's) opinion, that he had exceeded his powers. He suggested, however, that the Clerk shculd write to Mr Har- ford, which was done. The Clerk read the letter, dated Nov- ember 30th, which he sent to Mr Har- ford, stating that he was sending Mr Rowland, chairman of the Council, a re- quest to summon a special meeting to re- ceive the report of Mr Vaugnan Davies ind to pass any resolution the Council night think fit with regard to the contri- mtion of £1,500 toward the light rail- vay. "I shall be happy," the Clerk Ldded, "if you so desire to put your pro- posal on the agenda by way of notice of notion. I saw Mr Vaughan Davies and Mr D. C. Roberts this morning on the question. Mr Davies said that you had made a similar suggestion in a letter to him. They both desire you to make Vffur proposal a little stronger and suggest that if the directors gave an undertak- ing to the Council that a siding would be made at Penwern, if the Council so desire, after the expiration of one year from the opening of the line. They would strongly support handing over the money immediately after the special meeting of the Council. It seems a pity that any difficulty shotit-ci now be raised with regard to the railway and I hope some satisfactory arrangement will be come to." Mr Vaughan Davies—What was the answer? The Clerk said he had no written answer, but Mr Harford told his son that he did not wish to put his proposal on the agenda. Mr Harford explained that the dir- ectors had arranged to' meet a deputation from the district and he had hoped to settle the question. Mr John Jones asked if the siding was included in the contract at first? Mr Harford said a siding was in the contract, but not this siding. That sid- ing was for six trucks; but it was found that on a gradient of one in forty it would be necessary for the trucks to be taken down to Ystrad and pushed back- ward to Penwern, which would mean enormous delay and extra cost in work- ing the line. Mr John Jones said it was clear that a siding for six trucks was included in the contract, but it had been changed from Penwern to Yistrad. He would like to know the meaning of a statutory station? The Clerk said he could not answer the question. If he knew a question of that kind would be asked, he would have brought the Order with him.. Mr. John Jones said it was an import- ant question, of which he had only received information that morning. ,K- The Clerk—It does not touch this qUMr10Morgan Evans askea if there was a halt or siding between Ystrad and Lampeter? Mr Harford replied that there. _was siding at Glandenys (Silian), with halts^ at Penwern and Blaenplwyf. Passenger accommodation was amply provided for. Mr East, on being asked to speak, said he was not deputed to give the definition of a statutory station; but from his ex- perience of railways, the only meaning he could attribute to the term was a sta- tion specially provided for in an Act of Parliament or in the Order authorising a light railway. He was well acquainted with the Lampeter and Aberayron Order, and had no hesitation in saying that there was no reference in it to a statu- tory station. It was not customary for Parliament or the Light Railway Com- missioners, to saddle a railway company with the obligation of putting stations or sidings anywhere. It was left to the promoters to put stations where the most traffic and revenue oould be obtained, or in other words, to suit the requirements at Y*rraders an(* using the line. Mr VV J. Lloyd asked whether it was, not possible to make an arrangement with the directors to avoid further fric- on. He was rather reluctant to op- pose paying the money, but still he had to do his duty toward the ratepayers by rying to get the best he could for them, He supposed every member represented the public, not the Company. He did not want to go against the Company and hoped it was possible to come to an amicable agreement. Mr East said he had been instructed by Mr Inglis general manaaer of the Great! Western, to explain the vtompany's posl-! Inglis had him clearly what to say, and to some extent he would have to refer to matters which Mr Vaughan Davies had spoken about. It was well known that the Great Western did not provide, or construct, the line. That was done by the Light Railway Company, generously supported by the Treasury, County Council, and local councils and, as Mr Inglis also thought, Dy tne assistance of the Great Western in undertaking to work and maintain the f aVT\ ^,estern were told that fL l1LUnflert<X>k t}i° Work and maintain the line, the promoters could go to the Treasury, County Council, and other friends to get money. The Great WTest-1 ern did not think much of the traffic prospects and sent experts over the line. J hey came to conclusions as to what the trainc would be, not twenty vears hence, umL nea- future- While traffic would be created which the Great West- ern did not have before, they would have to drop money in working the light rail- way. It was because the M. and M. Railway Company had made a promise before the line was leased by the Great Western, because of the financial assist- ance which the promoters would obtain, and because the Great Western did not want to assume a boorish attitude, lux Saye the undertaking and that was jjractically where they stood. He had to do with the terms of the agreement and was bound to say that the promoters took every advantage they could and every opportunity that pre-1 sented itself to obtain concessions from the Great Western. He persuaded Mr. Inglis to do things which would not' have been done in similar cases else-1 where. The outcome of it was that the promoters got an undertaking from the Great Western on exceptional terms. It meant that the line would be efficiently worked and maintained on an agreement in perpetuity. Whatever were the re- sults in traffic, the Great Western took the risks. In discussing terms with the promoters, the Great Western had to consider where station and siding accom- modation would be provided. The line was between twelve and thirteen miles long, necessitating provision between the two ends for trains coming from opposite directions to cross each other. With re- gard to Penwern, the test question, he did not say it was impossible to have a crossing place on a gradient of one in forty; but he had never heard of the Board of Trade allowing it. Therefore, the promoters had to go a mile and a quarter to Ystrad where they could have a crossing place on level ground. That governed the provision of the goods and mineral accommodation. The crossing place was the best place for a siding. It was recognised that Penwern was im- portant and there would have been the crossing place but for the gradient. He believ/ed the Light Railway Company had done the best they could. They arranged a halt at Penwern, and the good people of the district must be content to cart their goods an extra mile. If siding ac- commodation at Penwern was forced, t'he Light Railway Company would have to bear the cost. The working agreement had been cut very fine and the Great Western could not add to their respon- sibility. With regard to the letter from Mr. Marwood to Mr. Jones, Cwmere, it was stated distinctly that, while the gradient at Penwern was not very suit- able for a siding, the Board of Trade would not refuse to consider proposals. That letter was produced to Mr Inglis as evidence of a disposition on the part of the Board to allow the Light Railway Company to provide less than the Board's own regulations. Mr Inglis wrote to Mr Marwood asking if that was the real intention of the letter, and to what ex- tent the Board would reduce their re- quirement. Mr. Manvood, in rèply, simply referred Mr Inglis to the Board's standard requirements. Mr Loxdale asked for the cost of mak- ing a siding? Mr East said that was essentially a question for t'he engineer of the Light Railway but having been on the ground and consulted engineers2 he had no hesita- ^mating the' cost at between £ 1,500 and £ 2,000. Before a train off the running line was allowed to do any shunting, the Board required the provi- sion of a loop in which to draw the train, and the points would have to be set so that if another train came there would be no obstruction. The loop must be big enough to hold the train and a siding to hold the traffic must be provided. More land would be required, as well as signal !l'ying to Principal Bebb, he said the siding accommodation he spoke about did not require pushing back trucks from Ystrad, to which Mr Harford had referred. He informed Mr Morgan Evans that as far as the difficulty con- cerned the Great Western it applied both to working and constructing the siding. It would be necessary to duplicate the arrangements at Penwern and Ystrad. If a siding was provided, it would have to be properly made so that the running line would be clear, and the trucks would not have to go to Ystrad or anywhere else. Mr D. C. Roberts said he understood the Great Western had nothing to do with making the siding. That was a point between the Council and the Light Railway Company. Another point wras whether the Grest Western would have to re-consider the terms of the working agreement if a siding was made? Mr East did not think the agreement would be disturbed, but any additional cost thrown on the Great Western in con- sequence of the siding would have to 00 paid by the Light Railway Company, Mr Roberts said the difficulty which struck him was that it was originally in- tended to make a siding when the agree- ment between the Great Western and the Light Railway Company was entered into. Mr EaSit- That is wrong. Mr Roberts—But that is what we un- derstood. Mr E4ist said the agreement was en- tered into in February, 1909, and pro- vided for a crossing place, passenger sta- tion, and accommodation for merchandise, minerals, and cattle at Ystrad, and a stopping place at Penwern. If more was to be done, the Great Western would want more pay. Mr John Jones said when the deputa- tion met the directors they were told by the directors that a siding would cost £ 300 and an extra, siding to meet the Board's requirements would cost £ 350. Mr Yockney explained that Mr East's estimate was for the full requirements of the Board, that was, an independent sid- ing which would enable a train: to be side-tracked before shunting. Mr John J ones- Yesterday the estim- ate was £ 1,250 and it has now gone up to £ 2,000. Mr Yockney—I reduced the Board's requirements to the minimum. Mr Jones asked whether the Board would refuse to consider a proposal by the Light Railway Company to have a siding for six trucks at Penwern? No such proposal had yet been submitted to the Board. Mr Ekst said Mr Marwood had told the Great Western, "You know what are the requirements of the Board." That was! an indication of what the Board would tell the Light Railway Company. The Board had said it was not a suitable place! for a siding. Of course, they oould not! refuse to consider any proposals submit- ted to them. Mr Jones-We would like to have the pleasure of discussing the question after having a reply from the Board. Mr Vaughan Davies said Mr East touched the whole question in saying the object of ^the sidings and stations was to meet traffic requirements. The object of that trouble was that a siding had not been provided at Penwern to meet the traffic of the Vale of Ayron. None could deny that Penwern was more in the centre of the trade and traffic than Ys- trad. The only road from Ystrad was to Mydroilyn. On the map which he showed Mr Inglis there were roads from Penwern to Talsam, Cilcennin, Cross Inn, Llangeitho, Penuwch, Nantcwnlle, and Temple Bar. Major Lewes said Cilie Ayron was the station for Cilcennin. Mr Davies added that he named the chief places for the benefit of those who did not know the district Mr East had mixed the question of a crossing place with the siding. All that was ivanted ^*a,s a siding. He was not an engineer but did not think it was intended that a station under the Light Railway Act which was to benefit agricultural inter- ests would cost from £ 1,500 to £ 2 000. Mr Inglis could not deny to him that sid- ings were continually made on a gradient of one in forty. The secret of the wfiole business was between the Council and the Light railway Company. The repre- sentatives of the district contended that before they were specially rated for the railway a definite pledge was given that they would have a siding. If a pledge was given it ought to be fulfilled. The ratable value of the Vale of Ayron was nearly £ 6,000. There was no right to rate the people for a special purpose without fulfilling that purpose. The dis- tnct had been rated and the Company had spent the money. The Council were now told that the Company had no money "siamg. where had the money gone. He believed the money would have been spent to better purpose in making the siding. The Council were en- titled to be furnished with the Company's accounts and to know where the money nad gone. He said distinctly that under the Light Railway Act the Company were bound to make the siding. He had not the least wish to deal hardly with the Company. Mr Harford knew per- fectly well the offers he had made. He was willing to consider any suggestions which Mr Harford might make as to the time in which the siding would be made. They must remember where the grant of £ 20.000 made by the Council came from. A n°t come from Lampeter and Aberayron, but from Cardiganshire farmers, and the grant was made with the object of benefiting the agricultural interests of the county, not simply the towns of Aberayron and Lampeter. Ihose two towns got the whole benefit of the £ 20,000 and all that farmers had was a siding out in the cold as far as the business of the Vale of Ayron was con- cerned. They could not have the siding in a more inconvenient place The farm- ers strongly objected to pay money simply for the benefit of the trades- people of Lampeter and Aberayron. Mr Harford had a large interest in both places. He owned eighty per cent. of Lampeter and ninety-nine per cent, of Aberayron belonged to his nephew. Where were the interests of farmers? They had a siding out in the cold at Ys- trad. He would not vote to put pres- sure on the Company as far as time was concerned; but they should be re- quired to fulfil their pledge and make a siding. Mr J. M. Howell, the Council's repre- sentative on the Board of Directors, said he considered the remarks of Mr. V aughtin Davies were both spiteful and vindictive, and all his statements were a string of miscalculations of the position of affairs. The object of the directors was to benefit all the district between Lampeter and Aberayron. He was cer- tain that to Aberayron the railway would result in greater disaster than profit for a time. He meant as far as the older inhabitants were concerned. He had endeavoured from the beginning not to benefit the tradesmen of Aberayron so much as theVale of Avron. Mr Vaughan Davies had referred to the fact—it was not a fact-(laughter)-he had made a statement that certain parishes in the district were specially rated for the pur- nose of making a gran* to the raihvay; but the aggrieved parishes which were named at the previous meeting, includ- ing Bettws Leiky and Nantcwnlle, were not specially rated. They were in Tre- garon union and were only rated in the same way as Aberystwvth and Cardigtvi. Only the parishes m Lampeter and Aberayron unions were specially rated. Mr Davies had stated that the Company placed no convenience at the disposal of the district. The Oounjcil had hitherto adopted his calculaton as to the popu- lation of 2,000 and the ratable value of £ 6,000 He (Mr Howell) asked the Council to regard those figures with a little scepticism. Mr John Jones-I can prove them. Mr Howell said even if the figures were proved, the inhabitants had a siding within a mile and a quarter. Was that not bringing the railway fairly near the door of the people, whose benefit the Council had in view? He strongly ob- jected to the manner in which Mr Vaughan Davies placed his case before the meeting. Sir Edward Pryse said it struck him as_ rather peculiar that the question was raised at the last moment when arrange- ments had been made for borrowing the extra grant of £ 1,500. It appeared to him that other districts could come for- ward clamouring for a siding in front of their doors. He supposed that sidings could be made anywhere up to the sky; but it was all a question of expense. He objected to the question being raised at the eleventh hour when the railway was nearly completed. Mr John Jones said the question was not raised at the eleventh hour. The in- habitants were told scores of times there would be a siding at Penwern and they had every confidence in the directors. Mr Lima Jones said it was quite clear that an additional siding to meet the Board of Trade requirements would cost a lot of money and it would cost the County Council from £ 100 to B120 a year. < The directors had no money and C°\ v n°^ °^Pa^n it by appealing to the public for private subscriptions on ordin- ary shares. Therefore if they were keen on granting the request of the district for a siding, the Cbuncil must advance money in the form of debentures. The c irectors could not be expected to go to the public once more. The Council shoulH give credit to t'he directors that they had used their best judgment in fixing stations and halts. It would be contrary to their interests to do any- thing that would not produce traffic and, therefore, they fixed stations where most traffic was likely to be obtained. Mr. Vaughan Davies must assume that the majority of the directors were men of common sense and if he was one of them it might not be more. The directors should be credited with having used their judgment and discretion in fixing stations where they thought best under the circumstances. Before judging them, the Council must promise the directors to provide the necessary monc-y. Like Mr. Howel 1, he was sorry to hear the remarks of Mr. Vaughan Davies at the end of his speech, especially regarding Mr Harford's nephew. Mr Davies-I only said Aberayron be- longed to him. Mr Jones—If Mr Vaughan Davies does as much for his district as Mr Harford's nephew has done for Aberayron, then they ought to be proud of him. Mr Harford, having said his position was rather difficult, pointed out that at the Aberayron meeting the Council unanimously voted the extra grant of £ 2,000 toward the railway on certain conditions. Those conditions were that the Treasury subscribed £2,000 and that the local authorities of Lampeter and Aberayron subscribed £ 500. There was no other condition, except that sufficient capital was obtained to finish the railway. He had received £ 2,000 from the Trea- sury and JB500 from the local authorities. Therefore, the directors had fulfilled the only conditions laid down by the Council. Mr Howell, who. was appointed to repre- sent the Council on the Board of Dir- ectors, was present when the question of Penwern siding was discussed and, after, meeting a deputation, various officials were consulted. He would be sorry to i say much about the deputation, who J1?d not met the directors in a friendly spirit. After considering the matter, the dir- ectors passed unanimously that they had neither power nor money to make the siding. The Council's representative agreed with that decision. Another point which should be considered was the, honesty of the County Council. He had spent six years in promoting the railway! I I with the help of others and incredible' difficulties were met with. When the: Council asked for a guarantee that the' necessary capital would be found, he thought it would not be difficult to obtain money from the public. The promoters appealed to the public and failed to ob- tain more than a small amount. Five or six persons, however, although un- ihe railway, agreed to take £ 22,,000 m shares, not debentures; He! t figwn,the CWil a distinct promise^ md h ul fnlfin 0?6^0 finis'n tlle railway 5' fulfilled the promise with the helrv of friends. (Hear, hear.) What was the position of the Council? h! and olhers jiad risked more than they thfy slMuldaVh d°n1' Pr;bably more tha" tofilfi'tli VG dar^ do, in order: Conned y^;>rrnsG hf made to i i ? u were theJ met ? Tjiev weie told because thev could not fulfil a condition, for which tfiey had not given a pledge to the Council and was not a condition m the contract with the Great bi-Ml^fl' Council were going to bieak their word with the promoters. It! was true that the Council had not re-! Pa £ tlle cheque^ but they had ruined the Company's credit to a certain u t' JJW Council had made it diffi- cult for them to meet their obligations. If they had the cheque six weeks ago, they would not be in their present posi- non. They had to pay the contractor every month and could not pay him un- less the Council paid them. It was a most unfair position to put the Company. It was harder for him that he could not attend the previous meeting when the matter was discussed. Perhaps he ought to have chucked his family in order to attend the meeting. He. was told Sm2 times that he ought to think more of his family and less of public business. When he found what was dene at the previous meeting, he felt the Council had thrown on him needless anxiety and caused finan- cial trouble to the directors which was out of keeping with the question before the Council. He read the account of the meeting and it seemed to him that every speaker began by saying, "We do not wish to do anything to damage the railway." There was no harm in every member trying to do the best for his district; but Mr Jones, Cwmere, evi- dently thought that £ 1,500 was of no value to che Company and was anxious thnf the grant by the Council should not be paid. Alderman Lloyd who wU obstinate sometimes (laughter) was + ^ly^e™ber ?f deputation w £ met the-directors in a friendly sp t What he said was that he was keen for the siding but would do nothSg to damage the railway. He told Mr Lloyd he was a gentleman and did + would expect of him-not to ruin th way because he could ""not ^et tli rr at h,s door This trouble aS,d'?g thing for the Comnanv— TiL i a new to fight from beginning'to end Thf way was nearly ruinSd w raiI~ it did not pass Crib™ Th + ^ause in the head and since tbl ocked of Cribyn generous? Sofc SVT-6 utmost to support the Slw^v 4°^ rt as found impossible to finJ" m » lt' extend the railway to New £ moneJ to people of New Quay /o J f9' ay;, and the to which they & had many a stand-un fio-hf He Davies who, howeve? & j E" J- support the raihvay' even Tf +h 6 uou'd not get it to New Quav I ul y 0011101 Morgan Fvans, Oakford' quff 'f iir cause the railway did not Z v Quay, his son had acted ew If he had squeezed^ the P §ener°usly. others had squeezed the. mPany as might have iade it impose ^ST he station at Aberavron Ti, have a the least to gai^ seemed tol who had the greatest support to f. Ve J?]ven (Hear? hear.) An? Lot f railwa^ had been received from A1 suPport Cardigan. Mr Eit 1, VytJl and diMttes, jf the^k^L"-1"11^^ Harford) did not pretend y. (lVJr- gmeer, but had taken steps to ob^- 6n" reasonable estimate of the Sost of }JaiD ing and the lowest w as ai W mo ,S-ld~ did not include the fnU r °' whlch described oy Mr Bast. Who w^r?f€nts vide that money? would pr0- that he, or the director^ j Say but lf the Council carr id o f !u°; solemn promise to the directors +?eir had carried out their solem • Ile^ the Council, the line co^ld T to the Counci insist the money already voter? n pay Harford said, "that i^ Sf line and the end of us Ait v 1t,ie Davies had helped him a )a"g3ian he (Mi- Harford) gave him t ,r?e;i and that he did. Mr ViniJ a credit for all ever, had not taken a £ 1 ^?av:,es: how- railway, although the 111 tlle through the heart of the "ay went tho,J he had been county for many years HP l" ,i the Mr Davies aSJ S he couW »°^OSed beaten, and he gave Mr n • ut was that he had donf g^d wod '7 county and for agriculture £ matter, however, Mr Davies hirl + view which was not fair t;ken a rat'iier hard when he took ™ V Was responsibility that he should%^nancial the few directors who u-i? .W °n able to bear the 'additional th~ whole onus of finding Pi snn oA „ le The G« W*diS mefLVeSs in a friendly spirit and were ready to TS; hadraRady ImprovS Shff* rt°y' dishonest pryrt. by altering atorS ™trh to meetP ^c'difEcu'ru^ At- Grel WesLer„ta T »fth the ixieat Uestein to have a siding at Pen w ern the directors had done their ut- of contract "n* had f«™<3 P-rt Ol file contiact. One reason for the alteration in the contract was the devia tion made in the line at Brynog. In U A Sat' ln, of everything which had been said, and in spite of the fealmg of some members that the d,> ectors had not fulfilled their promise h^ made the following proposition, w hich he had sent m a letter to Mr Vaucrh™ J)avies: If at the end of twelve from the opening of the line the people of Penwern do not find Ystrad conveif wnt and still wish to have a siding at Penwern and if the Board if Irade allow this to be made the directors will do their utmost to find capital for the s''dino- and arrange with the Great Western to work it." He did not think the Council could ask for more He was asked to alter the wording "the directors will to their utmost" to will find the money". but he was not prepared to tell a lie for Mr Vaughan Davies or anyajje else. He was not there to say he could find £2,000 and therefore asked the Council to relieve him of further anxiety by helping to finish the railway. He had done all that he could and left himself in the Council's hands. (Cheers.) Mr W. J. Lloyd said the worthy repre- sentative of the Council on the directors had contradicted what Mr. Vaughan Davies said as to the rating of the par- ishes; but what Mr Vaughan. Davies said was accurate. Trefilan parish and the upper portion of Llanfihangel Ystrad were specially rated. They were thickly populated and that seemed to have tickled the writer of "Notes from Aber- ayron." (Laughter.) Mr Josiah Jones said he appreciated Mr Harford's unbounded sacrifice and unswerving zeal for the railway; but, as far as he understood, there had been a breach of contract, and he did not care what sort of siding was meant so long as it was included in the contract. He maintained that there was" more popula- tion around Penwern and Cilie than Ys- trad. Although he agreed \mi;t¡,h Sir Edward Pryse as a rule, he did not agree with what Sir Edward said about the eleventh hour. He remembered that Mr Harford was asked about Penwern siding and his reply was that the Board of Trade would not allow it on account of the gradient; but the Board now said they would not refuse to consider the proposal. As, however, ttere was a dif- ficulty, he hoped an arrangement would be made. Major Price Lewes said he was inter- be made. Major Price Lewes said he was inter- ested in Penwern and wanted a siding there more than anywhere. He went to look at the ground and thought the sid- ing would cost £ 1,000. He did not blame the inhabitants and hoped they would have a siding sooner or later. The sid- ing, however, was only a question of de- tail and, as the Council had voted the money, it ought to be paid. When he' read the account of the previous meet-j ing, he thought it was shabby to with-1 hold the money. The Vale of Ayron should feel greatly indebted to Mr Har~j lord and the directors, having regard to the financial responsibility they had un- dertaken. Surely the Council" had some gratitude. Members said they did not want to stop, or harm the railway and immediately plunged their knives into it. That was not right or reasonable. He fure f'"°m what he knew of fhe Coun- cil that they would not do what \y^s tin- fair; but to hamper the railway by with- holding the money was nothing less than a shabby transaction. He proposed that the money should be paid. Mr D. C. Roberts said he was sorry the personal element was introduced. (Hear, hear.) He protested strongly against the remarks of Major Lewes. He oould not think for a moment that anything the Council had done was a shabby transac- tion. Mr Harford had many times acknowledged that the^Cbuncil iTad been in every way ready to support the rail- way. While he protested against the remarks of Major Lewes. he also pro- tested agamst the remarks of Mr Vaughan Davies. (Hear, hear.) He would not associate himself for one moment with the remarks he made in re- ference to Lampeter and Aberayron. Major Lewes-What I said was that I felt sure from what I knew of the Coun- cil that they would not do a shabby trick. Mr Roberts said he was glad to hear that. He considered that Mr Harford had done immense good work. Many members were not directly interested in the railway in the sense that they did not III the district and that it would not benefit them personally; but they were anxious to support the railway for the sake of the county as a whole. It was nr™ J 1at £ d that a Riding had been pronllsed at Penwern and he did not a mt+t Edward Pryse that it was Whp' fif r^1S ■, e'cventh hour. sJ 'f .r>^G Council desired to arrive at a satisfactory arrangement for the district, 11 1\C1 e determined to carry out their obligations toward the light railway. They were endeavouring in a difficult position to arrive at what was fair and just between the claims of the district and the position of the Light Railway Com- pany. The directors had a big under- taking and personally he felt bound to support the payment of £ 1.500. As the directors said they were not able to find money for the siding, the whole under- taking would be at a standstill unless an advance was made by the Council. That being so, one was bound to sacrifice, and the district should accept wJhat was pro- posed to them in the spirit in which it was made. Mr Jlorgan Evans, while sympathising with the district, said the Council could not honourably back out and, as one who voted for the grant, he must vote to pay the money. If it was proved that a siding was really wanted after the rail- way had been opened, it would no doubt be constructed. Mr John Jones suggested that the directors and the Great Western Cbm- pany should come to an agreement that a siding would be made. He did not wish to press the question of time. He was more in favour of the railway than anyone in the meeting, but had been led astray regarding the siding. Mr W. J. Lloyd said if a siding was made in three or four years, the district satisfied. The payment of :bi,i>L0 was only used as a lever to get the siding. (Laughter.) Harford said some members, prob- ably, did not care whether any extra responsibility was put on him or not. tie did not say they were not perfectly justified legally in withholding the money. ™ Dr,C;. Cherts—And morally. tho!r wrJ?rd 1aid he did not dilute ™ JJey threw t}le responsibility on ^he directors to find money. In three weeks the Board of Trade would inspect the line and if the line was passed the dnectors would obtain the Iieasury provided the County Council grant was paid. The directors could ?j rP r<nv money on the security of the Treasury grant and that was what they had done. Knowing of the action taken by the County Council, the Trea- !ry ,.rad advanced £ 2,000, but retained the £ 5,000 until the line was passed and the contributions of local authorities were paid Lampeter and Aberayron unions, which were most directly concerned, had paid their contributions.' Mr Vaughan Davies said he had not the least intention of being discourteous to Mr Harford and his nephew by refer- ring to their interests in the two ends of the line. What he said was to prove that the agricultural interests in the centre of tne line were not fully consid- ered. Mr Harford had made a mistake as to the Treasury grant. He (Mr. Davies) had a letter from one of the principal officials of the Treasury that what they would block was the equival- ent of the County Council block. If the Council blocked £1,500, the Treasury would only block the same amount and, therefore, the remainder of the £5,000 would be paid. Mr Harford—Whether you strike us with a whip or a hatchet makes little difference. Mr Davies—But we do not block Mr Harford—If you block £1,500 and the Treasury block £1,500, we lose £3,000. Mr Davies—You do not lose the money. Mrl Harford —If you do not pay we shall lose it. He added that it was anti- cipated there would be less difficulty in obtaining canital after the railway was finished. They could not get more money at present and he had no more money or credit. He had gone as far as he could and, perhaps, more than he should have done. There were a few others who had done so. They had done their utmost for the district. (Hear, hear.) Could not the Council trust them to again do their utmost? They could not do more than they had done. Mr Vaughan Davies asked if Mr Har- ford would promise to have plans and specifications prepared and laid before the Council ? Mr Harford replied in the affirmative and suggested that a few representatives from the district should meet the Board of Trade inspector and Mr Yockney when inspecting the line. That seemed a reasonable way out of the difficulty. Mr East, in reply to Mr Loxdale, said it was not unusual for tfhe Great West- ern to make improvements and additions after leasing a line; but it was at the ex- pense of the railway. There would be no difficulty in making additions or im- provements. If the Light Railway Com- pany found that a siding at Penwern would bring more traffic, they would no doubt come to terms with the Great Western. It was the duty of a railway carrier to get all the traffic possible. Dr Jenkyn Lewis seconded the pro- position of Major Lewes unconditionally. Mr Vaughan Davies—What! Mr John Jones produced a certificate from Mr Drummond to Mr Rogers, Aber- meurig. that a statutory station was to be at Penwern. It was agreed to pay the sum of £1,500 to the Light Railway Company, the Council relying on an undertaking given by Mr Harford that the propos- ition he had submitted would be passed bv the directors and recorded in the minute book. It was also agreed to allow the directors to postpone payment of the second instalment due to the Council, as was done in the case of the first instalment, and the question whether the' costs incurred in borrowing the Council's contributions 'should be paid by the directors was referred to the Finance Committee. Mr Harford, in thanking the Cbuncil, assured the Council that the directors were doing their utmost and that his promise would be fulfilled as far as pos- sible. (Hear, hear.)