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NORTH WALES COUNTIES LUNATIC ASYLUM. QUARTERLY MEETING OF THE COMMITTEE OF VISITORS AT BANGOR. A quarterly meecing of the committee of visitors was held on Monday at the Castle Hotel, Bangor, Mr. P. P. Pennant (chair- man), presiding. The visitors present were Mr. Millward (Abergele), representing Den- bighshire Dr. Prit jhard, Mr. Edward Jones (Conway), Mr. Jones Morris (Portmadoc), Mr. J. T. Roberts (Carnarvon), Carnarvon- shire; Dr. Edwards (Holyhead), Mr. Rees (Capel Mawr), Harry Clegg, Acglesea Dr. Roberts (Festiniog), Merionethshire; Dr. Easterby (St. Asaph), Mr. Elwy Williams (Rhyl), Flintshire; and Mr. Pryce E. Story (Denbigh), the subscribers. Dr. Cox (the medical superintendent), and W. Barker (cterk ts the visitors) were also in atten- dance. THE NUMBER OF PATIENTS. It was reported that the number of patients now on the books was 714, and the -chairman stated that the figure had been ,reached before, but never exceeded. THE WATER SUPPLY AND MINERAL RIGHTS. -Next on the agenda followed the con- sideration of correspondence with the cffice of Woods and Forests respecting the claim for mineralsin Bryntrillyn, the source of the new water supply. The Chairman explained that correspon- dence had passed between the com- mittee, and the office of Woods relative to mineral rights under the area of land sur founding the lake, and the department made a claim of X500 for those irights. To protect the lake they had to purchase what- ever mineral rights there were, over a cer- tain area around the lake. But X500 seemed to them to be a monstrously large sum to pay, and he was asked to call at the office of Woods to endeavour to get a re- duction in the claim. He did call at the office in company with Mr. Herbert Lewis, the member fcr the Flint Boroughs. They saw Mr. Stafford Howard, and stated to him that hey considered the mineral rights were, t) practically worthless, and ought to be got for a nominal sum. Subsequently, the clerk wrote a letter to the department, embody- ing those arguments in his letter. In reply the Office of Woods said they would reduce the claim to the extent of accepting £2 per acre for the required area. The committee thought this a very poor reduction, and in consequence of this unsatisfactory reply from the department, asked that a commit- tee be received to discuss the matter. The department refused to acquiesce in the sug- gestion, and adhered to their offer. The committee would not take one rebuff, and the department was again written to, and he (the chairman) called upon the clerk to read the subsequent correspondence. The Clerk read these letters in which it was stated that Mr. Stafford Howard was unable to make any further concessions; but that the ti >e allowed for the purchase would be extended for a fortnight from the date of that letter (Jan. 6th). Mr. Barker further explained that what the Office of Woods now claimed was 22 per acre for 222 acres— £ 444. Mr. Edward Jones said that what was really before the committee now, was the difference between the claim of the Office of Woods and the S400 offered previously by the committee-a difference of £44. Dr. Pritchard could not see why they should pay anvthing. He knew something about these Woods and Forest Commis sioners. They would claim anything. But the Asylum authorities had already got the lake, and if their stream was polluted, they had their remedy. The Chairman remarked that it was not a question of pollution. A quarry might be dug in the place, and their lake drained. Mr. Clegg observed that they had the right of water, but could not prevent anyone mining in its neighbourhood. Mr. Elwy Williams said that as a matter of fact, there were no minerals in the place, and they had powers to take the water and lay mains. The Clerk quoting the Act of Parliament, said that the crown rights were specifically reserved under the Act. Mr. Jones Morris said that they must observe the Act of Parliament. But the question was to fix tbe price of these crown mineral rights. Four hundred pounds was exhorbitant. Forty shillings would have been nearer the mark. He suggested that the whole should be submitted to arbitra- tion. Of course, he knew that arbitration was a costly thing, but rather than pay an excessive price, it would be better to go to arbitration. Mr. P. E. Story stated that it would be no use going to arbitration now, since they had already offered £400. Mr. W. Elwy Williams: That offer was without prejudice. Mr. Story proceeding, said that he thought for their own safety they had nothing to do but to submit to the claim. Of course, it went very much against the grain to pay a large sum of money in this way, but they were bound to protect their lake. There were blue-stone slabs in the neighbourhood, and if anyone went to quarry for them in close proximity to the lake, and drain it, the consequences would be very serious for the Asylum He pro- posed that they agree to pav the claim. Mr. Elwy Williams asked if there was any fear of anyone coming to quarry in the place. He did not think there were any slates there. Dr. Cox There are blue-stone slabs. The Chairman thought that the cheapest thing for them to do would be to pay. In his interview with Mr. Stafford Howard, he was given to understand that absolutely no further concession would he granted by the department, who were advised and supplied with information by their agents. Mr. Edward Jones seconded Mr. Story's motion. Dr Pritchard, as an amendment, moved that they should go on with the work, and take no notice of those Woods and Forest people. It was ridiculous to pay their claim. Mr. Jones Morris suggested that Mr. Stafford Howard be invited to visit the place to see for himself He was very much interested in some trees that had been planted in Tanybwlch, and was frequently in Wales. The Chairman said that he had invited Mr. Howard down, but he declined, as the office bad every information supplied to them by their own surveyors. Mr. Clegg remarked that if they pro- ceeded as Dr. Pritchard advised, the first thing the department might do would be to obtain an injunction against them. In that event they would perhaps have to pay costs as well as the X400 Dr. Pritchard: Have you ever heard of the department taking proceedings ? Mr. Story thought that Dr Pritchard did not seem quite to grasp the situation. What the committee had to do was to put itself in a position to stop anyone from quarrying in the neighbourhood, and to the danger of the lake. Mr. Elwy Williams: But the department are asking for what does not exist. They are claiming for mineral rights, and there are no minerals. Mr. Jones Morris said that he was in- formed by the clerk that the whole question arose on a notice to treat for the purchase of the rights from the department. It was usual, Mr. J. T. Roberts, he thought, would Agree with him, in such cases, to go to arbi- tration. Mr. J. T. Roberts said he did not under- stand that notice to treat had been served. The Clerk replied that it had some time ago, Mr. Roberts then went on to say that when notice to treat was served under the Land Clauses Act. the procedure would be to give notice of the empannelling of a iury by the sheriff to assess the value. That "ne, it would be open for the department t" -ive a counter notice of arbitration. This the would be sure to do, as it was not likely they would allow a Denbighshire jury M be the valuers. In the event of their gu ng to arbitration under those cir- cumstances, and one shilling more than X400 was p warded, they would have to pay the costs of arbitration. Mr. Elwy Williams But if the price was fixed at £ 300 by arbitration ? Mr. Roberts Then he would have to pay his own costs. What ever the award may be, we must in any event pay our own costs. There is no power under which costs could be charged against the other side. On a division, Mr. Story's motion in favour of agreeing to the claim, was carried by seven votes to one. The building committee reported having ordered advertisements for tenders for dam and roadway, and on the motion of Dr. Pritchard, this was confirmed. DRAINAGE. The next three items on the agenda were consideration of correspondence respecting the provision of a new sewer; to receive tenders for drainage works and the report of the sub-committee re correspondence witli architects and as some questions were likely to arise, thit it would be premature to publish, the chairman suggested they should be dealt with in committee, after the d-e .)atture of the. reporters. Mr. J. T. Roberts asked what the first item referred to mean t Was it intended to mean that they were going to consider the making of a new main sewer, which the corporation of Denbigh should construct. If that was so, he was strongly opposed to dealing with it in committee. The Chairman said that was not the in- tention. A Member: Mr. J. T. Roberts had better wait. It was then decided to deal with the mat- ters mentioned in committee. REPORT OF THE COMMISSIONERS IN LUNACY. OVERCROWDING AND PHTHISIS. Copies of the report of the Visiting Com- missioners in Lunacy, dated 22nd October, 1898, were laid on the table. Mr. Clegg referred to certain clauses in the report. In one clause the Commis- sioners said, In going through the exten- sion works, we thought the partitions be tween the baths in the general bathroom were too high for sufficient supervision of the bathing, and the heating will probably prove deficient.' Another sentence read, 'In passing through the wards, we were struck by the dull and cheerless aspect of many of them, more especially in the cases of Nos. 2, 3, and 4 on the male side, where there is nothing to amuse or interest the patients.' And in another it was stated that 'The dress on the women's side is still lacking in variety, and on the men's side much of it is untidy and worn.' He (Mr. Clegg) wished to know if the house com mittee had done anything in regard to those matters. The clothing might lack variety, and be even untidy, but it should not be worn. Dealing with the deaths in the house, che report stated that he large proportion of 28 per cent. resulted from phthisis, towards which it may fairly be assumed that the overcrowding contribu ted.' A great deal had been written in the papers about this disease, which he under stood to be infectious lately, and it would appear that its spread could be checked by isolation. Had any steps been taken in the Asylum to separate people suffering from the complaint from other patients. The Chairman replied with regard to the first point, mentioned by Mr. Clegg, that he did not agree with the Commissioners that the partitions in the bathroom were too high. They were only sufficiently high to afford ordinary decency to the bathers. With respect to trie heating of the bathroom it was not necessary to have a special heating arrangement there, as the hot water conveyed in the pipes, and in the baths would render the place sufficiently warm, even in the coldest days of winter. He agreed that something might be done to make wards 2, 3, and 4 more cheerful, but it would necessitate alterations that it was undesirable for them to commence in the old building before completirfg the exten sion. When the new works were completed, they would see to what extent the old wards would be required. Dr. Pritchard asked if they could do without Glanywern when the new building was completed. The Chairman said they could. Of course, they could not speak of the poputation a hundred years hence. Dr. Pritchard: Will the new buildings suffice for the next twenty years. The Chairman replied in the affirmative. Dr. Roberts referring to the question of beating the bathroom, asked if the patients undressed in a room of different tempera- ture to that in which they dressed. The Clerk said the dressing room was heated, but not the bathroom. Dr. Roberts asked if the temperature would be similar in the two rooms ? Dr. Cox replied that he could not say. It had not been ascertained yet. Referring to the dress, the chairman said that he never saw anything to complain of in that matter. Dr. Pritchard If Mr. Clegg would read all the clause in that portion of the report, he would have seen that the Commissioners stated, after the reference to the dress, We saw to-day's dinner of soup and bread in some of the wards, and but little of it was left by the patients (laughter). The Chairman stated that he would ask Dr. Cox to reply to the point referring to phthises. The matter had come consider- ably to the front after the Marlborough House meeting; but had not been con- sidered by the house committee, as it hid arisen since their last meeting. Dr. Pritchard thought this question had better be left in abeyance. They could not separate the cases now. Dr. Cox said that they did separate cases as far as they were able. They separated the acute cases from others. But on the whole they could not completely classify the cases under present arrangements. Dr. Roberts asked if the use of spitoons in the wards would not conduce to the les- sening of the danger of the spread of the disease by expectoration ? Dr. Cox agreed, and said he would be very glad if they could do that, but they were dealing with entirely irresponible people. Mr. Story asked if the old system of heating did not conduce to the danger by the fact that the patients expectorated down the gratings, and others inhaled the fumes as they a-cended from the hot pipes Dr. Cox replied that the new scheme of ventilating and heating, would considerably alter the sanitary condition of the institu- tion. Mr. Clegg said he was not quite satisfied with the explanation, and moved that the bouse committee be requested to be fur- nished by the medical staff with a report on the subject. ELECTION OF VISITORS. The Clerk reported that two counties had notified their election of visitors. Mer ionethshire had re-elected their old visitors, Mr. C. H. Wynn, Rhug; Dr. Roberts, Fes- tiniog, and Dr. Hughes, Bala. Flintshire had also re-elected the chairman (Mr. Pen- nant), Dr. Easterby, Mr. Elwy Williams, Rhyl, and Mr. William Jones, Holywell. FINANCIAL. During the quarter, the average weekly cost of maintenance was reported to be 8s. 2d. In the statement of accounts submitted, the assets were shown to be S4,390 12s. 9d., made up as follows:—balance at commence- ment of quarter, £2,276 0s. ad. amount due for private patients, X-389 2s. id. due from counties and!unions for pauper patients, £3,594 6s. lOd.; due from county treasurers on building and repairs account, X311 12s. loii. due from county treasurers in respect of rent for over quota of patients, £70 13s. 4d' amount due for criminal luna- tics, S24 17s. 8d. Liabilities: due to tradesmen, &c., ou maintenance account, 2745 13s. 5d.; amount due on garden and land acconnt, JE55 3s. 3d. amount du-e to excess account, S441 12s. 3d.; amount due to suspense account, £57 lOs., leaving a balance in favour of the Anylum of £5,366 14s. 9d. Other repoi ?s were received, and the house and building committee then sat.

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