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Penmaenmawr Land Dispute.

Festiniog v. Llanrwst.j


Trefriw Library.

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Festiniog Spectators.

Markets and Fairs.

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Lianrhos Charities.


Lianrhos Charities. COUNCILLOR THOMAS AND THE VICAR. WARM DISJUSSION AT TRUSTEES' MEETING. Yesterday (Wednesday) momic., the Lian- rhos charitit-s were distributed by the Trust- ees in the Vestry Room of the Church. before the distribution, a meeting of the trustees was held, there being present the Vicar (the Kev J. F. Keece), Col. the Ilou. H. Lloyd Mostyn, and Mr J. Winter (church- wardens), and Mr William ihomas, represeu- ting the Llandudno Urban Council. When our representative approached the Vestry, the Vicar announced that it was a Committee meeting, out when Mr William Thomas stated that he had no objection to the Press being present, the other Trustees readily assented. Mr VViLiiaan Thomas at once stated that he formally complained and protested against the way the charities had been administered. A more cruel, unfair and harsh method he could not imagine, and it was due entirely to the dictatorial attitude of the Vicar. He (Mr Thomas) had witnessed incidents which had given him considerable .pain and trouble. He had seen the names of old, respectable, but poor people, who had lived m the parish the whole of their lives, and who had been in the habit of receiving from this charity. He had seen those people being allowed to walk to the Vestry in inclement weather, some from Peiirnyaside, and others from Llandudno, varying from 70 to 76 years of age, to find that the Vicar bad decided, with- out consulting him (Mr Ihomas) as co- trustee, to leave out the names of such per- sons and after the completion of the dis- tribution promptly turning them out empty handed. This was done to his own know- ledge, in order to put on names of persons who were comparatively young and strong, who were ineligible, because 'they lived out of the parish, and were in receipt of pirish relief, and also persons who were compara- tive strangers to the locality. He (Mr Thomas) compLained that the Vicar refused to give an opportunity to peruse and approve of the list in time to enable the correspon- dent to notify any recipient whose name was struck off, also that it was impossible for him to bring cases forward, for the simple reason that he was not going to invite old people from 70 to 75 years of age to walk there on St. Thomas' Day, on the off-chance of their application being successful, and for which he complained that it would be impossible, if he succeeded in the applica- tion, to notify her or him after the meeting of Trustees, and in time for distribution, lies also wished to complain that no minute book was properly kept, and that no resolu- tions or decisions passed at the meeting were properly recorded. He further stated, that the wording on the tickets to deal in shops 1"- the parish was illegal, because it re-intro- duced the Truck Act. This was distinctly a parochial charity, and not an ecclesiastical oi!c. There was also his name 011 the ticket. He felt that it should be put as representing the Llandudno Council. The Vicar in reply to the latter remarks, isaid fthaA was simply an omission vhich would be rectified. With regard to The sen- tence mentioning dealing in shops in the parish, we knew of instances where tickets had been taken to Conway. There were several matters in Mr Thomas's statement to which he took exception. At the invitation of the Vicar, Mr Wil- liam Thomas gave names of persons whom be considered had suffered a hardship, to which the Vicar gave reasons why they were struck off the list. Mr Thomas There may be just reasons, but I have not had1 a voice in it. The Vicar said he never understood that it was passed to have a meeting of the Trustees a week before hand. Mr Thomas made'the suggestion that the list should be sent to the Trustees before the distribution. He admitted that he was wrong in his letter to the Press. The matter was not put to the vote at all. There was no acceptance of the suggestion. Mr Thomas: The meeting was quite in- formal, and even now I do not know who to address as Chairman. I wrote to you once or twice, and mentioned the agreement on the matter, and you contradicted it until now. The Vicar Do you think if an agreement was made, I should not have kept it? I ap- peal to Col. Mostyn. Col Mostyn: I cannot recollect anything about it myself. Mr Winter said he did not remember it being mentioned. Mr Thomas: You were not present, Mr Winter. A remark by the Vicar, which wi- inau- dible to our representative, brought forth the reply from Mr Thomas: "It is your word against mine." The Vicar said it was not agreed at all, and he regarded it as a suggestion only. Mr Thomas It was evidently ignored. The Vicar It was not intentionally ignored. We did not accept the suggestion. Mr Thomas That is my complaint. Mr W inter said he also had been very much pained by seeing people turned away, but he did not think it was the fault of the Trus- tees, because even if they sent a notification to those who were to receive the doles, many others would come on the off-chance. Mr Thomas said the position was differ- ent. They were led to believe until they were in the church that they would be re- cipients. Mr Winter I think they have been told. The Vicar They were never told. They came on spec. Mr Thomas said that with the Llandudno charity, the practice was to allow the old recipients on the list until they died off, and they notified any person who was struck < ff The Vicar said the object of the charity was to relieve the necessitorus, and not al- low the poor to claim it year by year as if it was a birthright. At the invitation of the Vicar, Mr Thomas named a person whom he considered young, and the Vicar replied thait at the time he was on the verge of starvation. Mr Thomas's reply was, that he lived out of thfi. pacish, and the payment was illegal. Mr Thomas said there was another reason, that where persons were already in receipt of parish relief, it was not advisable to strike the names off the list, but the schems stated definitely that new persons could not be added if they were in relief of parish relief. The original order stated by way of instruc- tion, that the number should be brought down to 12. The Vicar I had no idea about that. We have given according to the money at our disposal. Mr Winter said he remembered a few years ago a notice coming, stating that the amount, given was small, and that it was advisable not to put any more names on, but there was no mention as to how far to reduce it. The Vicar said he did not think the Char- ity Commissioners could tie their hands if it came to that. The Trustees could do as they liked. Mr Thomas said that was so in regard 1c the number, but not in the matter of intro- ducing persons in receipt of parish relief. In Llandudno there were 15 on the list, and at Lianrhos there were 26. Without being offensive, he should like to say that some people approached the Vicar and told him something, and off his own bat he struck the 'people off. The Vicar No. no. Mr Thomas Pardon me, the tickets are written up before we come here, showing these people left out. The Vicar: I have tried to follow the practice in existence. Mr Thomas said he was glad to find that Mr Winter had suffered in the same way to see the poor people turned away. The Vicar replied that they would be too glad to relieve them all if they could. The name suggested by Mr Thomas as being a young man was put on entirely in ignorance. Mr Thomas reiterated that there were comparative strangers to the locality put on, and when asked for the nqmes, Mr Thomas gave them, and added that there were per- sons over 60 and 70 years of age in the parish more deserving. He could only ask them in future to meet a week before hand to go over the names. At Llandudno, there were two charities; and he believed it was the same at Llanrhos. There was that of Lewis Owen and Richard ap Robert. The Vicar said they got the money in one sum. Mr Thomas said that the charity of Rich- ard ap Robert was vested in Lord Mostyn, and for the last two years he had objected to contribute, and the Charity Trustees at Llandudno had passed strong resolutions calling the attention of the Charity Com- missioners to the matter. He believed the same charity applied to Llanrhos, and they, at that meeting, ought to pass similar resolu- ions. It was a matter of £ 2. The Vicar This is peculiar to us, we get air our from tithe. Mr Thomas .said his contention was, that i there were two charities to be distributed on St. Thomas's Day. They were only getting a return of what was actually handed to them from Conway. They could not get the return of others, because Lord Mostvn dis- puted his liabuity to contribute. The Vicar We did not know of its exis- tence. Mr Thomas then raised the objection to the wording on the ticket, and with the ap- proval of the other Trustees, this was struck out, after a lengthy discussion. The Vicar then announced that there was a sum of S 2s gd to be distributed, and after going through the list, 23 names were approved of, and each of these persons were handed a ticket of the value of 7s. Col. Mostyn restarted the discussion by stat- ing that it had always been left to the dis- cretion of the Trustees to put on as many as they liked. Mr Thomas complained that poor people were left out, and now he did rot want to increase the number. Mr Thomas said his complaint was, that old, deserving recipients were pushed out, and younger persons brought on, without his knowledge or consent. The discussion then ended, and a new list of the 1910 recipients was made out by Mr Thomas, and signed by each of the Trustees. The Rev. J. F. Reece, vicar of Lianrhos, Llandudno, writes as follows:- gSt" I think that the strictures indulged in by Air. W. Thomas at a recent meeting of the Llandudno Council in regard to the St. Thomas's Charity demand an answer from me. It would appear from his remarks that my coming to the parish caused a change in the method of distributing the charity, whereas we have only continued the practice that has been in existence for many years—namely, that the trustees should meet on the morning of St. Thomas's Day and finally approve of the list of recipients. Mr. Thomas made the suggestion that there should be a meeting of the trustees a week or so beforehand to arrange the list, but this appeared unnecessary to the others as the list is only a short one, and a meeting on the morning of distribution would amply suffice. The list for 1907 and 1908 was approved of and signed by Mr. Thomas. In 1909 I received no communica- tion whatever from him, neither did he appear on the day of distribution. Some days ago I received a request from him to convene a meeting, but I replied that the list could be arranged on the morning of the distribution. At the same time I submitted to him a list of recipients for 1909, and invited his suggestions in regard to the new list, but this unfortunately was not mentioned by Mr Thomas, for some reason or other, at the meeting of the Council. He submitted two names, with the remark, I know but little of them, but perhaps you know more,' Both the names suggested are of persons not resident in this parish. He made a reference in his speech to certain poor people who had been turned away empty- handed, but surely at every distribution this cannot be avoided, as there are always more applicants than the funds will allow to be relieved It has been the practice here to continue the old names as far as possible, but occasionally to insert others of persons who, I in the opinion of the trustees, are more necessitous. No tickets, as far as I can recollect, have been given beforehand in my I time, and I am positive that last year the tickets were filled up by one of the church- wardens in the vestry and given to the appli- cants as they came for their contributions. "Mr. Thomas says that 'the manner of distributing the charity is most unfair,' and in a letter to me states that names have been substituted who are comparatively young in years and who are healthy.' Having made a charge of this kind it is Mr. Thomas's plain duty to prove it. I can assure him that there has been no desire to exclude his advice, and that the only point in dispute is whether there should be one or two meetings. Mr. Thomas asks for two, and the other trustees, with a view to saving time and trouble, think that one is sufficient for the purpose."


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