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-..-------------ARMY AND NAVY…


ARMY AND NAVY VETERANS' ASSOCIATION. ANNUAL DINNER. I THE WAR AND CRITICS. SPIRITED REMARKS BY MAJOR WYNB HAM QUIN. On Monday evening the assembly-room of the Windsor Hotel, Barry Dock, was fittingly decorated with flags and coloured lamps, it being the occasion of the annual dinner of the Army and Navy Veterans' Association, OViJr which the Mayor of Cardiff (Mr S. A. Brain) presided. The chairman was supported by Councillor J. H. Jose, J.P. (chairman of the Barry District Council), Major W. H. Wynd- ham Quin, M.P. for the division Rev H. H. Stewart, hon. chaplain to the Association; Major-General H. H. Lee, J.P., Mr D. T. Alexander, Dr P. Kelly, Dr C. F. Sixsmith, Dr Gillon Irving, Mr F. P. Jones-Lloyd, Mr. J. Weaver, Mr 0. Horton, Mr Frfild Huelin (hon. secretary to the Association), and others. After dinner, which was much enjoyed, the l Chairman proposed the Royal toast, which was most enthusiastically received. He said there was no one who felt more acutely the position of ear soldiers in the Transvaal than their aged Queen. They could make the path of life of the soldier much easier and happier by letting them know that while they were out fighting for their Queen, their's at home were being cared for by a grateful nation. (Loud cheers.) They knew he was treasurer of the Soldiers and Sailors' Fund at Cardiff, and by the aid of that fund the wife and children of the soldier were euabled to hold up their heads in respect, and they proud to say that every one of them would be kept in that position. (Cheers.) Dr Kelly, in one of his usually humoroun ppoeche*, submitted the "Army, Navy, and Volunteers." The genial doctor said that every man and woman now read their newspapers from cover to cover, and at the various corners of the streets they would see Tom, Dick, er Harry with a newspaper, who there and then constituted himself commander-in-chief, and laid down the plan of campaign, pointing out to sundry admirers what Buller should have done and what Gatacre should not have done. (Laughter.) Their Army at the present moment was passing through a very severe crisis, though they had no doubt as to the ultimate issue. Few others knew of the tremendous difficulty which faced their officers and men in the Transvaal. He knew they had to contend with an enemy as full of tricks as the monkey in bis native wild. They had to contend with what were generally thought to be the best marks- men and riflemen in the world, and their soldiers knew that, and that in the present campaign the chances were sadly against them. Their troops had accomplished feats in Glencoa and Elandslaagte that no other troop in Europe could have done. (Loud cheers.) Unfortunately, dash and daring and pluck were not everything. It was not for him to criticise, but he knew that they would naturally fall back upon an Irishman—(loud laughter)—with an Irishman assistant, namely, Lord Roberts and Lord Kitchener. (Loud cheers.) He knew that the country would have full confidence in that Irishman who was now going out aided by another. (Cheers.) The toast having been drunk with honours, General Lee responded for the Army. The gallant general said that in the presence of so many men who knew what the rush of a bullet was, and something more, he felt he was out of place in being called upon to respond to that toast. (Cries of No." It was with pleasure he did respond. Dr Kelly bad told them what the feeling of the nation was. Even the old veterans of the Crimea and Indian Mutiny did not do better in those tough days than the young soldiers had to-day in South Africa. (Cheers.) They would not grudge their sons and relations the honouri that were well due to them. The present was a soldier's campaign so fir, and he thought, as the proposer of the toast bad said, that there was few soldiers under the sun who would have faced what their private soldiers and regimental officers bad faced during the past few weeks. He believed and trusted that most of them would come home safe to their friends and relations. The Mayor had told them what the country was doing for the soldiers' wives and families, and he thought in doing tbat, that the country had shown its sense of the value of the soldier as it had never been done before, and which went a long way to- wards making the Army a popular branch of the service. He took it upou himself to respond for the Navy, in the absence of Lieutenant Traherne, R.N., and thought they should be thankful to-day for th- Navy, that they had men to man them, and that they had several grand friend, over the water. Their old shipa weul keep them safe. (Loud cheers.) U Th. Ministers of all Denominations" was the nxt toast, proposed by Mr F. P. Jones- Lloyd, who said their soldiers sometimes bad t > think of tbo.e who attended, not to their material, but to their spiritual, wants. (Cheers.) They could not help but admire thA heroic efforts of the ministers who had accompanied the Army to the Transvlial. (Cheers.) The Chaplain to the Association (Rev H. H. kitowart, M.A ), responded, and dwelt on the unanimity of f-el ng among all denominations, j Whatever difft-rence they had concerning the policy, they all admired the men who faced danger when duty called, and he felt that they could not read the account* of their soldiers and sailors without feeling genuine pride. (Cheers.) He had noticed two or three things in the dis- patches with pride. He could not help feeling that the general who had failed in an enterprise would have great difficulty in turning his thoughts in the direction of sentiment. General Butler bad said in his official dispatch of his reverse—" The enemy have treated my wounded most kindly." In the hour of his defeat the! general had thought kindly of his enemies. (Cheers.) There was also something good in Sir George White's message, which said—"The plan was entirely my own; no one else was to blame." They had something to learn from the soldier, and it would be well if they could recognise that they had a commanding officer to obey, and obeyed him. (Prolonged cheers,) Major Quin having to leave for Swansea, spoke on the formation of the Association, of which he has been since its formation the presi- dent, which he said was achieving the object for which it was established three years ago. Re- fering to the Transvaal, the Major said they could not help but pay the utmost tribute to all who were engaged there, but while giving them them the utmost credit for what they had done, they must not for one moment forget the services rendered to their country by their forbears, and he was glad to set that they had before them that night several representatives of their two armies, and he hoped they would not forget, in their tribute to the soldiers of the present day, that w hich belonged to those of days gone by. (Cheers.) He did not think it was just or fair that they should pass immediate criticism on the actions of their soldiers at present in isouth Africa. He knew full well the difficulties they bad to eon- tend with. He saw the other day the report of a speech which was delivered by a certain noble lord on the conduct of General Gatacre. Before they condemned him, surely it was but justice that he should be heard. (Loud cheers.) Dr Sixsmith next gave the popular "Major of Cardiff" in complimentary terms, aiiii the toast, having received musical honouis, was responded to by the Chnirman, who spoke of ln8 great interests in Barry Dock. Mr D. T. Alexander, in the absence of Major Quin, next submitted the "Army and Navy Veterans' Association," Mr F. Huelin, the secretary, responded in a brief account of the work of the Association, which he hoped would soon be boused to more convenient premises, which would enable them to make it home for the veterans of South Wales. The Town and Trade of Barry," proposed by Mr William Pole, was responded to in a lengthy address by the Chairman of the District Council (Mr J. H. Jose, J.P.), who gave in- teresting figures of the town's import and export trade, dwelt upon its prospects, and finally spoke of the condition of the soldier, and reminded the company that as soon as the wave of enthusiasm had drifted over the land, the soldiers and widows would, no doubt, as in the past, be left to drag themselves through life as best they could, with the possible alternative of the workhouse. He thought it right that the member for the division should be impressed by the necessity of bringing the matter before the Government, and thought it a disgrace that the richest country in the world could not support the wives and families of soldiers who were making their prosperity, but who had to rely upon the voluntary efforts of the public. Mr O. Horton, in a most amusing speech, proposed what he called the toast of the even- ing, that of the Ladies," to which Mr A. E. Leyshon responded. There were other toasts and patriotic speeches, and during the evening at intervals, the programme was varied with songs and recitations, those taking part being Miss Wheeler, Miss Caley, Miss V. Huelin (piano- forte solo), Miss Hawkes, Miss C. Hobbs, Dr G. Gillon Irving, Mr G. Evans, and others, Mr W. Tame being the accompanist. The company broke up at about one a.m., having spent a very enjoyable evening.


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