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Urban Powers for Fishguard

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Urban Powers for Fishguard ANOTHER PUBLIC IMQTJIKY. Urban powers, long discussed and deliber- ated upon by the Parish Council of Fishguard, would seem to be within measureable dis- tance of acquirement. During the last five years or more the question has cropped up often and has been thrashed out. and again up and again let sink only to rise. years ago, consequent upon an appli- cation, the Local Government Acts Commit- tee of the County Council held an inquiry in the Market Hall but, deciding that the then area was to circumscribed, did not grant the order asked for. Meanwhile, the Parish Council continued to act as a Paroch- ial Committee to the Haverford Rural Dis- trict Council but two months' ago, on ac- count of a disagreement, the Committee de- clined to act further and rather than the proposed drainage scheme should be carried out by the District Council without Fish- guard having a voice in the matter, it was resolved to again ask for urban powers, and as a result a second inquiry was held on m day last at the Market Hall, in the presence of a fairly large number of the leading resid- ents of the town and district. The commit- tee, over which Dr Griffiths presided, com- prised in addition the Rev James Phillips. Messrs W H Walters, W T Davies, and W Davies George, clerk to the County Council. Members of the Parish Council present were Capt Titus Evans (chairman), Messrs W L Williams, W J Vaughan, L Evans, J R Richards, Capt Howells, D Rets, E J Radford, D Cornock, Capt Symmone, B G Llewhelin and the clerk, Mr A J Hodges. Mr Tombs, solicitor, opposed certain en- closures of land on behalf of Mr E D Jones, and outside agriculturalists; and Mr A B Williams opposed similarly on behalf of Mr W L Williams, Cefnydre, and others. At the outset it was clear that the Commit- tee and those concerned generally were favourable to the application and the inquiry was thoroughly business-like throughout. Mr W Davies George read out the notices together with the names of the various authorities and persons interested they had been sent to. Mr Marley Sampson, instructed by Mr W J Vaughan, solicitor, who had been tetained by the Parish Council, stated that he desired to know if the Committee would consent to his representing the Parish Council. He referred to a similar inquiry in which 11 r Justice Farewell refused to allow counsel to represent a local authority but he hoped the Committee would not be guided by that decis- ion. After consulting the other members the Chairman said that the Committee consented. In an able and lucid manner Mr Sampson then proceeded to open the case. Most of the particulars, he said, were within there own personal knowledge. In June, 1903, Dr Griffiths presided at a very similar authority. He would put before the committee as fully as possible the facts upon which the Parish Council relied that the order should be made. On the previous application the proposed area comprised about 3,900 acres and. at that time a diversity of opinion as to the suitability of the area arose, the committee coming to the conclusion that owing to the absence of unanimity they "could not grant urban powers. On Nov, 3id, 1902, on a poll, the Parish decided by a majority of 23 to apply for urban powers a very large proportion of ratepayers took part iu the poll. On November, 1904, a resolution was passed by the Parish Council to include Goodwick iu the proposed area, but for reasons he need not trouble the committee with this was not gone on with, and on the 23rd May, 1905, a resolution was carried by the Parish Council to apply for urban powers for the whole of the parish of Fishguard. This, however, was likely to meet with oppositiun from land- owners and occupiers of farms, and, notwith- standing that the applicatiun for urban powers was based on the inclusion of the whole of the parish, it was his intention, acting on instructions, to apply for an order on a somewhat smaller area than that of the whole parish, at the same time not excluding any objectors. a Mr Tombs, interposing, took it that the committee would have to say yes or no to the application, as it was a specific one to include the whole of the parish, and if they conld not agree on that area, he maintained that auy -other area would have to form the subject o' another enquiry. He asked the Chairman to say if that was not the case. He was quite prepared to meet them, but the Committee must say yes or no to the present application based on the area of the whole of the parish. Mr A. B. Williams said he was instructed to agree to the application, but not to the area asked for. Mr Sampson appealed to Mr Tombs to withdraw his objection; he thought that if *'■ he were to be bound by his original claim, it occurred to him that if they took a common- sense course they might see their way to withdraw and allow the proceedings to go on. \Y, Davies George asked for Mr lombs objection, which was again stated, and Mr Sampson said that Mr Tombs was perfectly "right in making the objection; it was the .1 proper time, but as it aimed at reducing the proposed area, it did not affect the application. Mr A. B. Williams, while agreeing to the application, declined to agree to an area he had not seen. Mr Sampson proceeded to read out the altered area, which was as follows :— •' Starting from Goodwick Bridge following along the parish boundary to Scleddy, up through Cefn. road to the junction of the •J roads, there joining the Parliamentary borough to a point in Trebovcr Wood, then across in an easterly direction to the Gwaun 11 river, across the river, thence up in a north- easterly direction, including Cilshave, Garn- fach, Gilfach Goch, Gilfach, Castell Gorn- wynt to Pwll-y-blewin — near the Dinas coast." Mr Tombq intimated that they could not agree as to the area. Mr Sampson then addressed the Committee in resDect to Mr Tomb's objection to the area on the le»al point raised, stating that if tie Committee ruled against him (Mr Sampson) on the area marked on the map and read out, he would proceed with the application for the whole of the parish. Replying to the Clerk, Mr Tombs said that supposing his client lived at a consider- able distance from Fishguard and casually heard of the application, be, having had no notice would be prejudiced thereby because he was not there to offer opposition. The notice, he contended, must cover everything decided there that day and they were bound by the notice to include the whole of the parish to which they must give their decision one way or the other. He opposed the area, but not the application. Mr George; Do you object to the lesseiiiDg of the area ? Mr Tombs I must object to anything but the application being decided, yes or no. .>- Mr George On what authority ? Mr Tombs On your notice., Chairman Quote your authority. Mr Tombs replied that he was objecting on the ground that the people concerned had not had the opportunity to cqnsider the mat- ter. Mr A B Williams read out certain sections of the Act having repsrencs to the conversion of parishes iuto urban districts and the pur- port of the application. Thn present area included two farms of over 500 acres situated quite a mile from the parish aud to which his client could not consent. Mr George But the farms you name are in the original proposal. Mr Williams admitted the purport of the proposal was quite clearly set forth by the Clerk in the notice, viz., for the con- version of the whole of Fishguard into an ur- ban district. The Chairman I thought you agreed just now ? Mr Williams*: I agreed to the application but not to the area. The Clerk Subject to the understanding that we have power to reduce the area. Mr B G Llewhelin observed he would like to know what power they had, as it appeared to him they did not possesss the power con- tended by Mr Sampson. The application was made for the conversion of the whole parish, as constituted, into two parts, and he would term them the majority and minority the former lived in the urban and the minor- ity in the rural, and it appeared to him the duty of the Committee was to protect the inter- ests of the minority. If they had not the power to adopt an area, it seemed to him that the committee wa a nonentity altogether. The Chairman said he wished then to under- stand they had not yet stated their powers, but he considered they had power to reduce the area if considered necessary (Cheers). Mr Sampson took it that the committee ruled he was entitled to proceed on the area as read out.—The Chairman assented. Mr Sampson said that from a glance at the map, the area he now asked them to grant was not very much more than about half the area of the whole parish therefore, "a good deal of the objection as to the inclusion of Agricul- tural land was met. Its boundary was arrived at by the Parish Council, and was larger than the one put before the committee two years ago. The Committee had to be satisfied that a prima facia case had been made out, viz., a need for urban powers for the Parish of Fishguard so that it might control its own affairs as did Neyland and JNar berth. He had had the opportunity of carefully reading in the" County z!1 Echo an excellent report of the inquiry as it took place in June 1903. Mr B G Llewhelin was the chairman of the Parish Council and he with Mr W J Vaughan, Mr W James, Mr W L Williams, Mr Yorke, Mr Carver, Mr T Lewis and other leading men of Fishguard gave it as their opinion' that urban powers were necessary. If that was the case at that time he did not think it would be -necessary to do more than call attention to the evidence given two years' ago. The case for urban powers was strong at that time and it was still stronger at the present time. Two years ago the rateable value was < £ 0,705 12s 2d, at the present time the population was 2,250 and the rateable value C7,275 7s lOd, shewing how very remarkable had been the growth of Fishguard's advancement, popularity, and prosperity as a watering-place. That being, so it was considered that an advantage would be gained by governirg its own affairs rather than other places should-share its prosperity by having to pay rates to the Rural District Council. Fisbguard contributed in rates out of all proportion to the other places in the union. They would find that in tthe) case of Mathry there was more expended on its roads than those of Fishguard which paid much more in proportion. Fishguard also con- tributed more to the Common Fund than it received in return, and these were some of the reasons why Fishguard should have power to control its own affairs. There were other reasons for the movement. It was shortly to construct a new drainage scheme, and it was essential and desirable that the scheme should come under the direct control of the gentle- men present because it was very difficult for a body meeting at Haverfordwest to control and manage satisfactorily a scheme which required to some extent local attention. It was clear at the outset that the work should be in the hands of the local authority and, from the point of view of the District Council, it would be far more satisfactory to that body to let the responsibility for the scheme rest with the people of Fishguard. The Clerk They are not opposing your application. Mr Sampsen said he did not say they were. At this point the band accompanying the Foresters through the Square interrupted the hearing, Mr Sampson taking the opportunity to mention that Fishguard had all the lirst signs of the fashionable watering place. (Laughter). He then went on to deal with the opposi- tion by the landowners, observing that it stood to reason that any such application as that they were making should receive opposition. No scheme ever went through without it; but in the present case he hoped to show that the opposition was based upon objections which were easily met. If the Committee were of opin- ion that such powers should be granted, the Committee must draw the line somewhere, and some persons injured and some benefitted. If the line were drawn too near the town every- body would build just outside the boundary, and he urged that the line should be such as would not expose people to the temptation of placing their buildings outside the line. lie called attention to that because building opera- tions were being delayed until the whereabouts of the line was made known. The Council, ill fixing the line, were looking to the future, and 1 fa.r GnouSh would not tempt people to build outside. Representatives of the landowners suggested that no agricultural laud should be within the area. That seemed impossible; they must in forming the area have some agri- cultural land in, and that being so> they"in- flicted a substantial hardship ou soino inijtV,s they included some portion in Uiu whole of the area. It was contended on behalf of the occupiers of agriculture land that they would suffer under the increase of rates. Mr Tombs There may be an increase. Mr Sampson: If it is only may be", 1'don't think we need take the objection SQriOUS]y# r\i y friend's objection is a hypothetical one. Mr A. B. Williams We cannot read the future! Mr Sampson ^o, ^'C should all be rich men if we could. There was a very great distinction between the rating of houses in lishguard and those outside. b He had authority for stating that there were single houses in the immediate neighbourhood of Fishguard very much below those on the inside. So in that case it Tl ,,1"f.nL. ,.} +1, r.. would remedy an injustice. vu rural part of Fishguard were rated at one half the houses were in Fishguard. Replying to Mr Sampson the clerk, Mr A. J. Hodges, stated particulars of the poll in November 1903 and also of the resolution passed in the Parish Council in May of the present year to apply for urban powers. Since the resolution, no member of the Council had taken any steps to object, and according to the meeting it was unanimous. Cross-examined by Mr Williams: There were eight members of the Council present out of fifteen at the meeting in Alay ?-Yes. Mr William James, Shop, of Bobl, replying to Mr Sampson, said he was one of the largest ratepayers of the parish, and was in favour of urban powers for Fishguard. His reasons for thinking urban powers would benefit Fishguard were, as he pointed out two or three years ago, that if there was commonsonse enough ill the parish to seleet good men on the Urban Council, then the additional powers could be made of benefit to the place. Mr Tombs asked if the evidence was neces- sary as all were agreed to the- application. Mr Sampson said he understood evidence of the kind was necessary. Several questions were then put to Mr James by Mr Tombs and members in respect to the area, Mr James replying that he wanted to have a share from the residents on the outskirts just as they had from him. Under the Agricultural Rating Act, he had to pay much more rates for the roads, and in fact ever since the abolition of the toll-gates he had with others in the town to pay for the repair of the roads which the former made the most use of. That was his contention two years ago. Mr W R Carver, auctioneer, replying to Mr Sampson, said he was acquainted with the neighbourhood and, in his opinion, the area on the whole, was a suitable one with one I exception, it extended rather unduly in the direction of Dinas. There was a bad hill there and building was not likely to go on in that direction. There was a proposal oil foot to divert the hill. The Chaiman inter- posing thought that should not be brought into the evidence. Respecting the boundary line as marked witness considered that if it were any nearer the town building would go on just outside the line to the depreciation of land inside the line. To questions by Mr Tombs witnes ssaid the cottage property at Lower Fishguard was 30 to 40 per cent less in value to that in Upper Fishguard. He admitteg there was a pretty good hill leading towards Trebover, but building was quite likely to extend in that direction. Any man with money to spend on building would naturally build as near the line as possible and with land in the town at t2 to £ 2 15s per foot frontage it was quite likely that builders would go outside especially as there were so many schemes oil foot calculated to send up the rates such as the new elemen- tary school and the drainage scheme. To a statement by Mr Tombs that the urban authority wolid have to extent the drainage. to the houses on the furthermost parts of the urban boundary, the Chairman said they were not, bound under urban powers to extend the drainage to the extreme limit of the urban area. Mr Tombs said they had to,pro vide a drainage system. Doubtless the town would increase in the direction vof Scleddy, he would not be satisfied with four- fifths of a mile close round the town because if a man could have a cottage within two or three minutes walk of the town he would build outside. He knew several wanting to know where the boundary line would be. Mr Tombs 'ot in the direel.ion'of Trebover. Replying further Mr Carver said it would be reasonable if all the land in the parish were included. Mr Tombs Are you speaking as a rate- payer or for others ? Mr Carver I speak because I am question- ed and in my' private capacity.—After a few others replies to minor questions put by Mr Williams, the Chairman thanked Mr Carver for his evidence. Mr George Williams, rate collector, ex- plained the difference in the assessment of the houses in the rural as compared with the urban portion of the parish. Farm buildings were assessed at one-eighth of the whole rate- able value of the farms, therefore the buildings were assessecl,lovv-er for sanitary purposes. The granting of the Urban powers would inflict no hardship on the houses which would come in the Urban area. In reply to Mr A. B. Williams, he said the area would comprise about 3.270 acres, being about 1,000 outside. The rateable value approximately of the pro- posed area would be: Buildings, £4,307 Is. Oid.; t, 2 land, £1.838 17s. lOd. total, £ 6,235 18s. lOid. Outside area Buildings, Y- 121) land, Ss. lid.; t'bl. £ 1,039 8s. lid.; average inside, 3,279 outside, 1,000. The rateable value outiide would be less than at present according to the existing valuation. The population outside area would be 200. The rateable value of houses in the ,town had been increased by ,£230. To a question, Mr Hodges said the number of members on the new Council was set down at fifteen. Mr Gordon Liddle, Penslade, said that as the question of meuibership had arisen, he would point out that the number was usually based according to the population. They^had been told that eight out of the fifteen com- prising the Parish Council had decided on urban powers, and if they examined the minute-book they would be surprised to find how few times the fifteen had attended the meetings—even when they had the parochial work to transact, and ho thought that fifteen were in excess ot the population, which was as large now as it was likely to be. He thought that nine, or at most, twelve members would be sufficient. The selection of that number would, he suggested, conduce to the survival of the fittest, and constitute a more capable body of men for administrative purposes. He was not suggesting for a moment anything in regard to the present constitution of the Parish Council. Referring to the present area, it had been mentioned that the district might be in- creased in another direction by the inclusion of another parish he thought that the Committee should bear in mind that they would have t< find a very good reason to the Local Govern- ment Board why they did not propose to include a portion of another parish almost ad- joining Fishguard, and if at a future time the urban district increased, that would be the time for enlarging the number of the members of the urban district council. Regarding the proposal as a whole, it had his hearty support —(hear, hear). If the Committee were to enquire, it would find that a membership of twelve would be according to the population. Chairman Then you have some doubt as to finding fifteen good men ? Mr Liddle: I don't say that, but there has been reluctance on the part of some to take part in the work of administration. If you reduce the number, you don't got the same number of "deadheads." Mr Davies George: There are two district councillors now it is proposed that Mr Hodges be the returning ollicer, and that the order come into force in October iicxt.-I,lr Sampson replied in the allirmative. Mr George Williams gave an instance of the difference in rating of cottages outside and inside the boundary. A cottage lie mentioned now assessed at £ 5 would, if it were in Fish- guard, amount to XII. Replying further to Mr Tombs, he admitted that farms were assessed up to tho hilt lie could not suggest how many houses should bo I reassessed. Some had already been taken in hand in that respect. Mr Tombs asked why Fishguard should be formed into an urban area embracing so much agricultural land, as compared with Narberth Neyland and Newcastle-Lmlyn where the agricultural land included was very small. He adduced the figures in acreage and rate- able value to bear out his contention. Theie was a farm a mile out containing 210 acres of agricultural land most of which it was propos- ed to include in the urban area, where as tfiiiy one or two fields of about 30 acres a breast of Fishguard could be taken as accom- modation land. Mr Sampson understood Mr Tombs was bringing forward, another area and he did not understand how he reconciled that with his previous objection. Mr Tombs; As I said before I am not here to oppose urban powers, but if my neighbour gives in 30 or 40 acres then I don't object. Anything you do with Fishguard should be done in fairness to the landowners. The pro- per thing to be done is for Fishguard and Good' wick to join and form an area. One is practic- ally living upon the other aIld although Good- wick gentlemen, 1 am 601*1"}- to sav, are a bit jealous of 1' ishguard, we are also a bit jealous of, Goodwick. If it conld be arranged that seVen members fi(\m each place form an urban council and a disinterested person act as chair- man, everything would go on smoothly. At the sametime I don't thing the time is lipe enough for that union; hut in a few vears time 1"' if Goodwick ,sees that urban powers are bad for Fishguard' the people will be pleased I to keep outside but on the other hand if they see it is a good thing they will want to join. Mr Tombs went on to say that Llanychare was outside Fishguard altogether and no one would ever think of building in that direction the probability was that it would be in the direction of Haverfordwest main road, builders always preferred to be near main roads and lie would ask them to re-consider the probabilities of the urban area altogether. Goodwick was "C the only direction they need aim at, and but for the neutral piece of ground between the places they would have been together. How- ever, the moor might form a place whereon they might fight out their differences. The ground in the area of Windy Hall would be built upon and lie would ask them to seriously consider whether they were justisfierl in includ- ing land which, in all probability, would not be built upon for at least the next 20 years. It had been suggested that farmers living in the district had the advantage of the town but he argued that when the farmers were engaged in hauling work in the town, they were neglect- ing their farms so that they were not im- proving in that way. He would again ask why Fishguard should be singled out to include 3,000 acres of agricultural land in the urban area. After a correction on the acreage by Mr Samp- son, the Chairman remarked that if they could agree between themselves on a area it would help the Committee very much. They had been there once before on the same errand and they were very anxious that Fishguard should have urban powers. Air Tombs said he was perfectly agreeable that the Chairman should act as umpire to a committee of landowners and parish councillors. The Clerk It is impossible for a committee from another locality to decide between two areas. Mr Tombs: It would come before the Local Government Acts Committee. The Clerk It would have to form the subjfedf of an inquiry. Mr T Lewis arose and observed that with all 'due respect to the landowners and suggestions by ME Tombs, they as ratepayers should be taken into consideration. The feeling was that the area as now suggested by Mr Sampson was sufficiently small—(hear, hear)—and he, for one, would not agree to any further limitation. When Mr W L Williams brought forward the resolution two year's ago Mr W L W illiams I did not bring forward the resolution. Mr Lewis should withdraw that remark. Mr Lewis, continuing, said he would hot withdraw—Mr Williams Then you ought— and he would stick to it that Mr Williams was the main supporter of the movement for urban powers on the previous occasion. Mr A B illiams We are supporting this application. < Chairman Allow Mr Lewis to go on—(hear, hear). Mr T Lewis, again continuing, said he suggested at that time not that the area was too small, but that the rateable value of the area was insufficient for urban powers. Referring to the polling on the question he admitted they were beaten on the second occasion but after- wards they fell in with the agreement notwith- standing the fact they were limited to a much smaller area. Although Mr Tombs suggested that the expenses would be too great they would fall in again and agree with Mr Sampson but lie hoped they would not make the area smaller than that outlined—(hear, hear). Mr A B Williams again read out the section I of the Act that the opposers could, within three months of the granting of the application, petition the Local Government Board not to make an order notwithstanding the factt that they were agreed to allow it that day. Mr W Davies George That refers to a Local Government Board Inquiry. Mr Vaughan said that Mr Williams was entirely wrong. Mr Sampson said that section 3 had nothing whatever to do with the present inquiry. Mr J C Yorke said he was in the very happy position of not being in the area. He recognized that there was a good deal of force in the 0 suggestion made by Mr Carver and Mr Lewis that the area should not be smaller and with which he agreed as he preferred the area., as defined better, than any suggested previously. The committee was sitting judically and their legal knowledge was sufficient for them to sav that an area of a mile or a mile and a quarter was sufficient. He thought they should take the bull by the horns and settle the point. Mr Carver asked in regard to Narberth and Milford, of buildings now in progress immedifite- ly-outside the boundary of the urban area. The Chairman said he was not present to give evidence but he was aware of the fact in regard to Milford. Mr Carver said that at Newcastle Emlyn, Narberth and Milford, building was taking place outside the line. Mr Tombs said that another application could be made to include such houses that were built outside. Mr Carver And have the same old fight 0 over again. Mr A B Williams said he understood the resolution of the Parish Council to apply for urban powers did not voice the feelings of the parish as a whole and he thought it would have been more proper if the Parish Council had called a Parish meeting on the matter, because the farmers were not represented. Urban powers gave L place very great control one addition to their powers it would convey was the Town Improvement Act and this would mean addition- al rates to the farmers outside the town and which would not benefit while they would still have to pay tiie poor rate as before. They did not know what might become of the town as yet and it was possible that the rates, if an urban council were formed, would" fncrease. The town would be iii a position to take over the water and gas and they would have to take over the drainage scheme. If the whole of the parish were put in the outsiders would derive no benefit frbm the lighting of the town. Regarding the Agricultural Land Act under which they paid only one half, that Act was only passed for five years and was renew- able at the end of each succeeding five years. In respect to the advantages of the town to the fanners he would say that the farm produce was sent away to Letterstou or to up line towns. Those farmers undertaking haulage neglected their farms. He did not think that some 3,379 acres of agriculture should be included in an urban area. In the petition, he now put in the committee would find that it was signed by farmers opposed to the application on the principle that, to include agricultural land, wyk not consistent with urban powers, at all. The interests of the town were not, in the least, those of the agricultural community because the townspeople lived on the town and on the country. Mr W GTfames, Pantyphilip, was called, but Mr D Rees stated that Mr James lived outside the area entirely. Mr Sampsom asked Mr Williams whether it was not a fact that everyone who signed the petition he had put in lived outside the area. He was instructed that such was the case. Mr Williams did not deny the'fact. Mr W L Williams said that his views on the subject were pretty well-known although they had been misrepresented that day by one or two gentlemen. He had always been in favour of urban powers for Fishguard but at the same time had always insisted that an urban district _1 1 1 '11 J L -.L. _1 snouiu comprise an inai cnaracterised sucii or had the possibility of doing so in course of future developments. In the area of the previous in- quiry they brought in the whole of that portion representing'that character very slight opposi- tion was offered, in fact, it was very nominal, but the application was not corroborated because of the opposition. Since that time the area had been increased and land added that was likelv to be developed, and, in his opinion, they should not go outside that land. They should only extend to Goodwick, ancljhe thought that would be a very satisfactory area in every wav for administrative purposes. If the whole of the parish were included there would be very little official work outside the urban part while if they had Fishguard and Goodwick to combine thev would have plenty of work for a good inspector and clerk, and the place administered from a proper centre. It had been said that cottage building would take place along the line; lie rather thought that cottages would be built where there was the prospect of obtaining light, water, and sewerage advantages. There was not the slightest chance of building being carried on outside the area. Respecting the inquiry two years' ago, and the part he took in it, he might say he did not care a brass farthing about his place being put in but it was for the tenants on the land, and who he thought should be freed from paying towards the urban portion. Mr Sampson I understand you are in favour of combining with Fishguard ? Yes, I think the area as defined is excessive, but for the control of the town I think it is better to have an urban area than without it. Mr Sampson Better have the area as pre- sented to-day than be wrthout urban powers indefinitely ? Mr Williams I don't say that; he would not admit there was urgent need for such powers. The difficulty was due to the Council not being able to agree on an area. Mr Sampson Excepting a few landowners, the area is, speaking generally, unanimously ac- cepted.—Yes. Mr Sampson pointed out that there never would be unanimity iu regard to the area. Mr Williams said be appreciated Mr Sampson's opinion, Mr Sampson: In your opinion will the absence of unanmity prevent the application ? Mr Williams: No, not prevent it. Mr Sampson If there had been unanimity in regard to the boundary two years ago would not the application have been* granted ? Mr Williams: Very probably. Mr Sampson In your opinion is there any prospect of obtaining unanimity in regard to this boundary ? Mr Williams I don't think so. ft is not ac- ceptable to the rural parti Mr Sampson Having regard to the difference is it not likely that the compromise to-dav will meet with that Mr Williams I don't think so. I should sav the mile area is exceeded to-day. Replying to a question, Mr Williams said that much of the difference on the rateable value was due to the extra building inside the town. Mr E. D. Jones And the rest to assess- ment. Further evidence was in regard to the figures stated above. It should be stated that the former area pro- posed two years ago comprised 530 acres in land and 370 in buildings, a total of 9QO acres. Rateable value 'within the former area, buildings, f,3,475 6s. 4xUd. land, £ 855. Outside area, buildings, £ 54 12s. 7d. land, j £ 1,091 13s. 3d,; total, f,2433 D-s. iolcl.: popula- tion inside, 1,566; outside, 426; total, 1,992: inhabited houses in proposed former urban district, 420; outside, 95; total, 515. The Chairman said they had taken the evi- dence that day, and a full report would be pre- sented in due course to the Committee when they would be able to give a decision, which would no doubt please everyone-( apP,lause ).J Mr W. L. Williams proposed a vote of thanks to the Committee for the able and courteous way they had heard the evidence. 7 Mr Sampson, in seconding, said they appre- ciated the very courteous and patient attention the Committee had given to the evidence. The decision they would arrive at, he was sure, would be a a most right and proper one—(applause). The inquiry then concluded.—We may add that the success of the application is due mainly to the very arduous and indefatigable efforts of the chairman, Capt Titus Evans, and Mr W. J. Vaughan.

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