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,Conway and Llandudno County…

Correspondence.

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Correspondence. [In no case are we responsible for the opinions expressed in this column.] To the Editor. SHAWMS. SIR-In the Cantata Domino" of the Church of England Liturgy, Evening Service, Psalm xcviii., occur the words with trumpets also and shawms." I have more than once tried to buy a shawm" at the leading musical instrument shops in London, but they appeared to be in ignorance of such an instrument. The following paragraph is the explanation of Dr Bridge, the organist of Westminster Abbey. It may interest some of your musical readers. I may add that I have heard the bassoon in a place of worship, but I hope for the last time.- Yours truly, Tan y Bryn, ELLIS LEVER. January 31st. [EXTRACT.] DR. BRIDGE ON WOOD-WIND MUSICAL INSTRU- MENTS.— In his Talk about Orchestra, at the London Institution, on Thursday, Dr Bridge, referring to wood-wind instruments, said that the flute and its infant child the piccolo came first as the simplest and most universal example of wood instrument. It was noted that the modern flute has a great deal more mechanism about it than its predecessors. Originally the holes were bored, not so much according to the musical scale as to fit the human fingers, or at any rate, to strike a happy medium between the two. Modern mechanism adjusted the claims of the scale and convenience of the fingers to a nicety. Its chief quality was flexibility. Of the oboe and the hautboy much that was interesting came forth. A very ancient creature this, the first of the reed instruments, known in its earlier forms as the schaum or the shawm. Its vocal powers are entirely dependent on the small double tongue of cane known as the reed. A great favourite of Handel, it is essentially melodic in its effects, and therefore not used for filling up. It has one great prerogative of which all oboe players are proud, -it gives the key-note to the orchestra. The oboe is mostly used for pathetic effects (vide the passage, What have I to do with thee ? in the Elijah; also in pastoral and even humorous passages. The clarionet, the lecturer said, was similar to the oboe, but with a single reed, and a short solo that he caused to be performed showed that its tone is purer and sweeter. It was an immense favourite with Mozart, who used it in all his symphonies except one, which was thereupon appropriately called the clarionet symphony. The bassoon was shown to be an instrument with a history. It stands to the "wood-wind" as the 'cello stands to the fiddles. If, said the professor, you want to talk back to the horns or make a musical joke, try the bassoon. It is also un- equalled at suggesting the horrible. Could any one remember, said the lecturer, when it was used in the church orchestras ? COLWYN BAY RATES. DEAR SIR,-I am glad to note that my effort to place before the public, the correct standpoint from which to view the rate-paying and the rate- collecting problem, has not been altogether fruitless,—one worthy townsman, Mr William Davies (Glyndwr) has taken the matter up, and by reading between the lines I think that we may conclude that light is beginning to dawn even into his mind, and I feel sure that long before another rate has to be forcibly collected, he will have paid his share, and that his name in future will be found amongst those who are a benefit (and not a burden) to their fellow ratepayers. I should have been content to let the little leaven work on in silence, had he not in his lengthy letter made a few errors which need to be corrected. The first mistake he makes, is to say that we are acting different to other places. This is not true, for other seaside resorts in our neighbourhood have for many years been in the habit of summoning defaulting ratepayers in October and November, for arrears of rates. The next mistake, is to say that we have sum- moned "hundreds of ratepayers." He will be surprised to learn that we have not issued sixty summonses for the current year's rates, and that this number is LESS than the average number per year since the Board has been in existence, so that instead of charging us with being exception- ally tyrannical this year, Mr Davies ought to be amazed at our moderation. The next mistake Mr Davies .makes is a personal charge of favouritism against myself, that my tenants have not paid their rates, and have not been summoned." Well, I never was inquisitive enough to ask whether my tenants had paid their rates or not, but, since Mr Davies's letter appeared, I have inquired, and I find that the tenant who owed rates and was not summoned had a contra account against the Board, and had agreed that the rates should be deducted out of the money due to him, which was done before the summonses were served. It is a mistake to think that the Finance Committee have ordered any individual to be summoned our resolution was that all defaulters were to be proceeded against, and I am quite certain that not one member of the Board knew who the defaulters were. A list was prepared of those in arrears, but it was never read out to the Committee, for we have always declined to treat the matter other than that of a question of policy. We are trying to reduce the burden of the Rates, that is our only object, and it is quite certain that it cannot be done if the Rate, when made, is not collected promptly from everyone. We are now paying a Local Board Rate (including Water) of 4s 6d in the pound, and there is not a ratepayer but acknowledges that, if we are to compete successfully with the watering-places around us, many thousands of pounds will have to be spent in various much-needed improvements, but we would all like to have the present load lightened, before bending our backs to future burdens. I fear that I have trespassed too much upon your space to give the true story of the misfortune which befell a respected deacon of the Congrega- tional Chapel, and must reserve any remarks upon I Mr Blud's letter until your next issue. G. BEVAN. RELIGIOUS DISABILITIES UNDER THE WELSH INTERMEDIATE EDUCATION ACT. SIR,-Stibscribe Subscribe is the cry that has been raised with regard to the new School, that is to be established, at some future time, for the Conway-with-Llandudno District. But let me ask those who wax so eloquently over this matter, how can they expect one section of the commnnity to subscribe when the Scheme imposes upon them severe religious restrictions ? Those who are loud in their cries for freedom of conscience, have violated it, in the most flagrant manner, in their Scheme of Intermediate Education for the County of Carnarvon. Because of the religious differences amongst themselves, they have to resort to the undenomin- ational farce and not only this, they will not allow others to teach what they believe in,—not even to day pupils in a hostel. No religious catechism or religious formulary which is distinctive of any particular denomination shall be taught to a day scholar at the School." —Sec. 84. In a hostel of a County School Christian family worship of an undenominational character includ- ing the reading of a portion of Scripture and prayer shall be read daily in such a manner as may from time to time by the Local Governing Body,"—Sec. 86. Until this clause is removed, it is useless to ask those to subscribe, who feel that they are under religious disabilities. Popular control has a charm, but when it interferes with the liberties and consciences of others, it is nothing but despotism. Bottwnog Grammar School (which was endowed by Bishop Rowland of Bangor, 1598-1616) as well as the Friars (founded, by Dr Geffere Glynn, 1557), has been wrenched out of the hands of their respective Governing Bodies, and placed under the control of other Governing Bodies under the new Scheme; but how many of these new Governors have subscribed towards these two Schools ? It is not to be wondered at that the new Governing Body of the Bangor County School, relish the taste of the £ 11,500 which t he buildings and site of the Friars' will probably realise when sold. The treatment which the old Grammar Schools have received, cannot easily be forgotten. It is rather too much that the supporters of these ancient foundations, when stripped and turned out naked, should be asked to contribute again towards those Schools in which their children would not be allowed to be taught their own religious principles. It is too tantalising to be always acting as lion-providers. Let everyone procure a copy of the Scheme, and read it over carefully before he promises a subscription, and let me remind the others who are so very persuasive, that the old clumsy method of smothering the bees when the hive is full of honey, is not a judicious policy. OBSERVER.

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CONWAY (continued).

Correspondence.