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CONWAY.

GYFFIN.

PENNACHNO.

LLANRWST. I

BETTWSYCOED.

TREFRIW.

TALYBONT.

I• ■■ m mm. m Mr. Isg, d Jones…

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• ■■ m mm. m Mr. Isg, d Jones v. Llanrwst Council. IMPORTANT CHANCERY ACTION. CONWAY POLLUTION. In the Chancery Division, Mr. Justice Parker had opened before him, on Thursday, the action of Isgoed Jones v. Llanrwst Urban District Council, by which the plain- tiff sought to restrain an alleged pollution of the River Conwa/. Mr. Romer, K.C., and Mr. E. P. Hewitt appeared for the plaintiff (instructed by Messrs. Chamberlain and Johnson), and Mr. Macmorran, K.C., and Mr. Tomlin (instruct- ed by Messrs. Porter, Amphlett and Jones, Llanrwst) for the defendant. In opening the case, Mr. Romer said that the plaintiff was the owner of a freehold house known as "Plasyndre," formerly called "J'enisa'rdre," which was within the urban district of Llanrwst. It was bounded on the west side by the River Conway, which there flowed from the south to the north. The de- fendants were the District Council of Llan- rwst, and the object of the action was to restrain them from discharging into the River Conway at a point opposite the plain- tiff's property the sewage from the district without first freeing it from all foul and noxious matter, to the deterioriation of the property and the quality of the water of the river. Counsel submitted that it was start- ling at this time of day to find a local auth- ority that onId contend that it was right to discharge crude sewage into a river. But that, he said, was what these defendants were doing, and they were turning the River Conway into a cesspool. This, he contend- ed, they were absolutely prohibited both under the Public Health Act and the Rivers Pollution Act. The defendants set up that the river at this point was a tidal river, and they also denied the plaintiff's title. But, counsel submitted, whether the plaintiff was owner of the bed oif the river or not, he should prove from the evidence that sewage and other most objectionable matter came on to his land, and was also deposited all along the river banks in his ownership. The defendants, instead of doing anything to try and remecty the present state of things, in- tended, if not restrained by the injunction of the Court, to go on with their disgusting habits and discharge crude sewage into the River Conway. At the resumed hearing on Friday, Mr. McMorran, K.C., for the defendants, desired to liave it made quite clear what the trespass was that the plaintiff really complained of. It would appear, he said, from the opening statement of Mr. Romer, K.C., that it was the allowing of filth to find its way on to the plaintiff's land. As he understood the plead- ings, the trespass alleged was the presence of the ipipes on the plaintiff's land. The pleadings might cover both, but it was not clear. Mr. Romer said. his learned friend might take it that he was not now complaining of the position of the pipe No. i. There was one further matter he should like to make clear, and that was that the whole of the sewage of the defendant's district was dis- charged through one or the other of these sewers, with the exception of the workhouse, which had a sewer of its own. The learned counsel then proceeded to deal exhaustively with the statutes and authori- ties bearftig upon the matter. Counsel con- tended that a private individual who had filth under his control and discharged it on to another's land would undoubtedly be liable. What, therefore, could be the ex- cuse of a local authority in the position of the defendants? They apparently relied upon the Act of 1875, but he submitted that there was nothing in the Act which excused them from the liability that everyone else was under not to create a nuisance. Dr. Meredith Young, medical officer of health for the county of Cheshire, said that the discharge of this crude sewage into the stagnant part of the river was likely to cause and did cause a nuisance, and was danger- ous to the health of the inhabitants of the neighbourhood Witness had TTPWM- seen the river when there was not a deposit of sewage on the plaintiff's banks, and floating matter in the water. He had seen sewage fungus at the spot in question, and that was never found unless there was a large accumulation of sewage. He did not think that drinking tthe water would harm cattle, though there were times when it might. Drinking the water would not affect the milk unless it gave the cattle gastritis. Cross-examined, witness was certain that the discharge from No. i sewer did not go straight down the river. He could not be mistaken about the pollution he saw. He did not think that anyone could walk along the bank and not see the state of things he had described. If experts said they went there to look for it and did not see it, he should say that they could not see any- thing. There was a tip on the pLaintitts land. It was composed of cinders, broken crockery, iand 'the like, buit he found no offensive matter, and the surface was cover- ed with lime. Sir Robert Boyce also gave evidence for the plaintiff, and expressed the opinion tha,t the river Conwav was polluted by these f sewage outfalls, and said that he had evi- dence there in court that put that beyond -doubt. In support, witness produced a chart and photographs made by himself. He had, he said, noticed polluted matter on the banks of the plaintiff's property. He should say that the pollution was dangerous to health, and that there was a risk from cattle drinking the polluted water. Everyone now was coming round to the opinion that there was a risk from milk obtained from cattle which had drunk contaminated water. He formed a strong conclusion that two sewer outlets were greatly out of proportion to the volume of the water of the river. He could not say how much sewage came down the pipes. It was a question of quality, not quantity. He had also formed a very strong conclusion that the amount of pollu- tion was immense. Dr. Richard Jones, medical officer of health for fcestiniog, said this practice was largely in vogue in the Conway district. He had found distinct signs of sewage in the neighbourhood of the (plaintiff's pro- perty. The hearing was adjourned until Wednes- day.

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