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Merthyr Education Authority.

[No title]

--_._--_-COAL CRISIS.

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COAL CRISIS. LEADERS CRITICISED AT THE CARDIFF CONFERENCE. CHALLENGE TO MR. STANTON. An important conference of miners' delegates convened by the Executive Council of the South Wales Miners' Federation was held at Cardiff on Saturday, to receive the report of the National Conference and to arrange for the ballot of workmen on tho terms of the proposed agreement. Mr. W. Brace, M.P., presided, and Mr. W. Abraham, M.P., was also present. The delogat- numbered 315, representing 156,491 miners, iid the proceedings, which were con- ducted in private, were somewhat animated. ABERDARE DELEGATES AND THE COUNCIL. Mr. W Brace, M.P., and Mr. T. Richards, M.P., gave exhaustive; reports of tho course of events since the last conference, explaining that a deadlock having been arrived at, another meet- ing of the Conciliation Board was held as tho result of the mediation of the Board of Trade. At this last joint meeting, the owners submit- ted materially revis-ed proposals, but, as the workmen's representatives were ctnli unable to accept them, a reference was made to the Miners' Federation of Great Britain at a con- ference held in London. At this conference the Welsh representatives applied for the operation of the 20th Rul., but this application was re- fused, and the Welshmen were advised to accept the terms offered them on the ground that tho points of difference outstanding were not of sufficient importance to justify a national or even a sectional strike. After refreshing the minds of the delegates on these points, Mr. Brace, in the course of a very strong speech, opened up a discussion in regard to the attacks made by Mr. C. B. Stanton upon his colleagues in the speech delivered by that gentleman on tho preceding day. Mr. Braoa made a pointed challenge to Mr Stanton to substantiate the charges which were implied in his criticisms. (the Chairman) as well as his fellow-mem- bers on the Executive Council, who were the subject of these criticisms, courted the fullest investigation. He invited Mr. Stanton to for- mulate his charges, so that the members of the Executive Council concerned might knn", whether it was suggested that they had been bribed, or whether they were so weak-kneed as to be totally incapable of carrying on the work. He expressed his bitter resentment of Mr. Stanton's insinuations, which were the last thing they —c 'd l^ave expected from a col- league. The" iticisms were uncalled for, dis- courteous, and •>Solutely unwarrantable. Mr. Stanton himself was in full possession of the facts, and kn, p-ecisely what had transpired, and was quite aware that the Executive Coun- cil had done its utmost to secure the best pos- sible terms for tho workmen. Mr. Stanton then replied at great length. His chief poin* was that he was not bidding for popularity, as was shown by the fact that he himself was constantly assailed by the pub- lic and the press because of the policy he was pursuing. Continual attacks were being made upon him, so that he was not trying to be on the popular side, but with him it was a matter of conviction. He then went on to complain that he was being voted down at the Executive Council, and nearly alwaya found himself in the minority. It was only by taking the course that he had taken tha he was able to bring before the workmen of the coalfield the griev- ance which the workmen in his own district complained of, and which they sought to have remedied. Mr. T. Richards, M.P., then replied to Mr. Stanton, and in very strong terms controverted tho allegations made by Mr Stanton as to the general conduct of the Executive Council. Mr. Richards then went on at length to refut-o the statements made by Mr. Stanton as to his being in any way unfairly dealt with by his col- leagues. These statements, urged Mr. Rich- ards, were not onlv manifestly unfair, but quite erroneous, and, like Mr. Brace, he (Mr. Rich- | ardsj, too, very strongly resented Mr. Stanton makinr charges which were absolutely baseless. The subsequenv proceedings were marked by an extraordinary outburst of feeling on the part of the respective partisans. It was main- ta-ined on the one hand that, altnough Mr. Stanton had occupied the platform for a great length of time, h", had completely failed to meet the challenge that. had been made to him to define the charges which were so clearly implied in his speeches. On the other hand, Mr. Stanton's supporters from the Aberdare district were prominent with declamatory re marks, in which they supported their leader. The leaders were freely denounced, and it was further suggested that they had deviated from the policy of the conference as laid down by the December meetincr in accepting the media- tion of the Board of Trade. It was maintained that the leaders were wrong in agreeing to meet the owners, whatever the Board of Trade might suggest, and accept anything but the original proposals put forward by the Decem- ber conference. It was reported by other dele- gates that the people who now deprecated the intervention of the Board of Trade we.ro the very people who previously advocated interfer- ence on the part of the authorities. The Welsh representatives, it was pointed out, had all along the line fought against the owners' pro- posals, and the only reason why they now ac- cepted them was that it was their bounden duty to submit to the Miners' Federation of Great Britain. OFFENSIVE REMARKS. As the discussion proceeded, the excitement bccame still more intense, and it seemed that occasionally in the wranglo the conference was oblivious of the object for which it was prim- arily called. Both from the platform and in the body of the hall language was indulged in which resulted in the offenders being called upon to withdraw. It was in the heat of this discussion that a delegate from Bwllfa, Aberdare, submitted a motion censuring the leaders and calling upon them to resign, and the discord continued un- abated. The affected leaders, who ,of course, form the majority of the Executive Council, intimated through the officials that they were by no means averse to being called up for judg- ment, and were quite ready to resign in favour of other members whom the conference might regard as being more competent to discharge the duties devolving upon them. Some of those who had already taken part in theso animated proceedings endeavoured to dis- suade the conference from voting upon the re- solution. Mr. Brace, howevsr, intimated that, now that the resolution had been duly moved and seconded, he was determined that tho con- ference should be tested, and wou!d not consent to the withdrawal of the motion under the cir- cumstances. Both himself and his colleagues were anxious that they should know precisely the views of the conference. Whan Mr. Brace put the motion to the meet- ing, it was found, unnecessary to count the votes, as, notwithstanding the amount of dis- cord created, only a very small fraction of the delegates voted in its favour. During the morning session, a very large number of questions were put to the officials regarding the purport and effect of the various proposals, and Mr. Onions was occupi-ed for a long time in giving explanations of the points raised. It was intimated that the recommendation of the Executive Committee that the terms of the proposed new agreement should be submitted to the workmen to be ballotted upon. This was carried unanimously, the small aggressive section again voting to the contrary. They also voted against the advice given by the Executive Council that the men should continue working nutil the 9th inst., in order that tho ballot should be taken. OFFICIAL REPORT. The following official report was supplied to tho press at tho conc'usion of the proceedings j by Mr. T. Richards, M.P., the generaj secre- tary:— "This was a general conference, at which there were present Mr. W. Brace, M.P. (in the chair), supported by Mr. W. Abraham, M.P. (general secretary), Mr. A. Onions, J.P. (treasurer), and a full attendance of the Coun- cil members. "Mr. Brace and Mr. Richards gave a repot on the interview with the President of the Board of Trade and the further negotiations that had taken place with the coaJowners and the proceedings at the Miners' Federation of Great Britain conference, after which a gen- eral discussion took place and a large number af questions asked upon the proposed terms of the new agreement, which wero replied to by Mr. A. Onions on behalf of the Executive Council. The following resolution was carried: That the resolution of the conference of December 13th bo adhered to, and the pro- posals for a settlement submitted to a ballot of the workmen, as arranged by the Execu- tive Council.

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---.------=----= I The Dark…

IN AGONY WITH ITCHING RASH

--_._--_-COAL CRISIS.

--_._--_-COAL CRISIS.