|The Rushden Echo and Argus, 13th March, 1942, transcribed by Gill Hollis
Old Brigade Disappears
Rushden Fire Veterans Go
Potato Parks: Some Land Still Idle
Wholesale resignations by volunteer firemen who found themselves unable to meet the new conditions of service imposed by the N.F.S. were discussed at the Rushden Urban Council’s meeting on Wednesday.
Land still lying idle, the slow progress of the water-basin scheme and the nuisance of badly-behaved children at park band concerts were also subjects for comment. The W.V.S. it was announced, are finding salvage stewards for every street.
Coun. Bailey asked if any information could be given regarding the resignation of certain members of the Fire Brigade, some of whom had served for over a quarter of a century.
The Chairman (Coun. T. W. Cox) replied that it had been intended to raise this question at the next meeting.
Proud of Them
Coun. Allebone said that before the Rushden brigade became part of the National Fire Service the controlling sub-committee were proud of having built up an excellent brigade under the voluntary system; they felt that the station was equal to any in the country for a small town.
Owing to the changes made by the N.F.S. only three of the old volunteer firemen were now operating in Rushden. Some who had resigned had been in the service upwards of 50 years, and all had given wonderful service for the town. Whatever had been asked of them had been done ungrudgingly and had given such satisfaction that the town was proud of them.
Now that changes had been made he doubted if the service would ever return to the old system, and he thought they should place on record now their appreciation of the old servants who had done so much to make them proud of the brigade.
Coun. Spencer agreed, and Coun. Green said that any opportunity of showing public appreciation should be taken.
The Council decided that an appreciation of the ex-firemen’s service should be placed on the minutes.
Arrangements were made for Jubilee Park (which has been ploughed up) and a small piece of land in the Hall Grounds to be cropped with potatoes. The Cemetery Field has also been ploughed, and in this case advice was sought from the War Agricultural Committee. Dr. Davies told the Council that potatoes had been recommended.
The Chairman remarked that the W.A.C. had offered considerable help in tractor ploughing, etc.
In reply to questions, Dr. Davies said the Government had guaranteed the sale of the crop. It would be a main crop of three kinds if they could get them.
Coun. George recalled that three or four months ago he mentioned that land suitable for allotments in Newton-road was lying uncultivated. A lot was still lying waste.
The Clerk (Mr. W. L. Beetenson) said it had been advertised at times and the Council received an application now and again. The trouble appeared to be that it was too far out.
Mr. George: In Newton-road! There are houses opposite.
Coun. Capon: I wonder, Mr. Chairman, if there is enough for 18 plots! (Laughter).
“I went up there for 20 years,” said Coun. Richardson. “Generally speaking, the Council is generous to people, but, in regard to allotments, under private ownership the rent was 7s. per pole, and under the Council it was 9s. 2d.
The Chairman replied that some plots had been offered free, and he did not think 9s. 2d. should stand in the way of ground being cultivated.
The Clerk: The present charge is 5½d per pole, which would be 9s. 2d. for 20 poles!
Coun. Spencer said there had been great difficulty in many cases because the men were away and the women were having to do the work. They hoped, however, that all the land would be taken up.
Reporting that February salvage (including 8 tons 6 cwt. of paper, 1 ton of iron and 1 ton 12 cwt. of kitchen waste) was valued at £40 17s., the Surveyor (Mr. J. W. Lloyd) said the receipts were lower than usual because for some days the freighters were engaged on snow clearance. The new scheme for salvage stewards had been placed before the W.V.S., who had willingly agreed to arrange that every street had a steward whose endeavour would be to see that every scrap of waste material was put to good use.
Dr. Davies thanked the W.V.S. for offering their services. They had been very busy, he said, and it was extremely kind of them to offer their help again.
Mrs. Muxlow, who is leader of the W.V.S., said that people who had been approached already were very willing to do all they had been asked to do.
Messrs. J. Hornsby and A. F. Weale were reappointed as trustees of the Rushden Parochial Charities.
The Clerk reported that 182 free Morrison shelters and four “paid” shelters had been applied for. Only one double-deck shelter had been ordered.
A report from the Parks Committee showed that arrangements had been made for the Rushden bands to use the Hall bandstand each Sunday afternoon and evening from Easter Sunday, the Council reserving the right to use the stand, if required, on two of the Sundays.
The bandmaster of the Northamptonshire Regiment had written asking the Council to consider booking his band, and quoting fees, but the committee’s reply was that the stand was fully occupied by the local bands during the summer.
Letters from the bands complained of the annoyance caused by children during the Hall concerts last year and the Emergency Sub-committee was authorised to make arrangements for the effective control of children in the enclosure.
Coun. Capon said the bad behaviour of the children was not only tantalising to the bandsmen but to people who visited the park. He thought it would also be disappointing to Mr. John White, who gave them the stand.
Coun. Waring replied that the committee were greatly concerned. They recognised that the bandsmen gave their services voluntarily, and they did not expect them to act as policemen. It must be extremely irritating to the musicians to have the children climbing almost over their backs. The committee had a scheme in mind, and he hoped they would be able to minimise the nuisance.
Plans for a canteen kitchen at Messrs. C. W. Horrell’s factory in Fitzwilliam-street were approved.
Messrs. Arthur Sanders, Ltd., were entrusted with the construction of five static water supply basins on the sites chosen some months ago.
Coun. Bailey enquired when the basins were likely to be completed. Many months had passed, he said, since the scheme was first announced and sites were chosen.
The Surveyor said the work would begin next week. The materials were on order and were coming through.
Coun. Richardson suggested that a storm water drain should be put in when the new road was made between Pightles-terrace and Harborough-road, and the Chairman promised that the Highway Committee would consider the point.
Inconvenience caused by the absence of a ‘bus shelter for persons waiting to travel from Rushden in a southerly direction was mentioned by the Highways Committee. It was understood that a building near the “Wheatsheaf” Inn could be adapted at a very small expense and the Clerk has communicated with the Eastern National ‘Bus Company, inviting them to take action in conjunction with other companies which use the “Wheatsheaf” stopping place.
Coun. Capon said that in view of the fact that more people, including those who were now motorists, would be using the ‘buses, a time-table exhibited in the shelter would be a big advantage, especially as it had become impossible to buy a time-table.
The Chairman said the Clerk would ask for a time-table to be exhibited in that part of the town.
The Housing Committee reported that more than 100 pipes in Council houses burst during the severe weather early in the year.
Notice to quit was ordered to be served on two tenants whose rent arrears had not been cleared.
A licence was granted to the Rushden Industrial Co-operative Society, enabling them to let No. 5, Succoth-place, a house scheduled for clearance, as a temporary wartime measure.
It was agreed to apply for permission to purchase 200 pots of anti-gas ointment, costing £3 15s. for distribution to the Air Raid Wardens.
A list of revised property assessments showed a net increase of £563, no less than £272 falling on Water Board property.
Twelve milk specimens sent for examination were all classed as “satisfactory.”
Notice to remove five “moveable dwellings” from an unlicensed site in Wymington-road was ordered to be served on the owner of the land.
Members in attendance were Couns. T. W. Cox, J.P. (chairman), W. J. Sawford (vice-chairman), A. H. Bailey, J. Roe, A. Allebone, J.P., C.C., F. Green, J.P., Dr. R. W. Davies, J. Allen, Mrs. A. O. H. Muxlow, W. E. Capon, T. J. Swindall, J. George, J. Spencer, J.P., J. H. J. Paragreen, H. Waring, E. A. sugars and J. T. Richardson, J.P. An apology for absence was received from Coun. A. F. Weale.
The Rushden Echo and Argus, 13th March, 1942, transcribed by Gill Hollis
£2,000 Gift For Russia
Rushden’s Message to Stalin
Magnificent Result of Month’s Campaign
Admiration and gratitude that prompted Rushden to raise £2,000 in January for relief work in Russia are to be expressed in a message from the town to Josef Stalin.
The Rushden Aid-to-Russia Committee met at the Council Buildings on Tuesday, received the balance-sheet of the campaign, and agreed that cheques of £1,000 each should be sent to Mrs. Churchill’s Aid-to-Russia Red Cross Fund and the fund organised by Sir Walter Citrine.
Receipts totalled £2,019 5s. 10d. and the expenditure was £19 5s. 10d. Ald. A. C. Allen, who presented the statement as treasurer, explained that the clear £2,000 was obtained by “begging” 26s. after the accounts had been added up.
Chief items of income were: Factory and works collections £756, house-to-house collections £244, donations from manufacturers £204, donations from professional people £97 (including £50 from Mrs. Owen), donations etc. from clubs £43, donations from organisations £38, donations from tradesmen £210, flag day £68, individual efforts £93 (including £36 from the Alfred-street Infants’ School Parents’ Association), gold and silver gifts £8 6s., concert £81, salvage campaign £170.
The tradesmen’s donations were collected by Messrs. J. Roe, A. Gramshaw, P. W. Wills, A. Coleman, F. Caswell, W. Chettle and H. W. Cave, and included 50 gns. from the Rushden Co-operative Society.
Whole Town Helped
Ald. Allen observed that the paper salvage receipts would have been bigger had the committee been able to find the labour to sort the materials. He acknowledged the assistance given him by Mr. Charles Baxter in the handling of the accounts, which were audited by Mr. M. S. Boyd.
Mr. Allen added congratulations to “everybody who has had any share in this magnificent effort.”
Coun. T. W. Cox, J.P., who presided, offered his congratulations to the committee. “We set out for £1,000,” he said, “and we doubled it. We have had the hearty support of every section of the community, and the balance-sheet shows at a glance how generously and equally the support has been given.”
Mr. Cox spoke of the Russians as “our grand allies without whom we should have been in a sorry plight.” He mentioned the help given to the committee by Mrs. Walter Robinson and the ladies who assisted her in the house-to-house collection, the tradesmen’s collectors, the Fire Guard, the Toc H. ladies, and those who lent transport for the paper collection.
“I feel,” added Mr. Cox, “that this is one of the happiest events in the whole of my year of office as chairman of the Urban Council.”
“Everybody worked magnificently and with good will throughout the month,” declared Coun. W. E. Capon, who, with Miss A. M. Sharwood, is joint hon. Secretary of the committee.
Crowned The Year
Coun. W. J. Sawford (vice-chairman) thanked the chairman for his excellent leadership and said the whole of the people were to be congratulated. Supporting him, Coun. E. A. Sugars said that Mr. Cox had had a busy year of office, and the Russia effort was an excellent way of crowning it.
Described by the chairman as “outstanding in this type of work,” the secretaries received a hearty vote of thanks on the proposition of Ald. Allen, seconded by Mr. J. E. Dilks. Ald. Allen referred to Mr. Capon as “the Mighty Atom.”
Coun. A. F. Weale said the result of the campaign was significant, for in Rushden nothing had ever been attempted with so much success. They all felt that the £2,000 was a mere token of the gratitude the people of the town felt towards the Russians. Every copper had been given with heartfelt thanks and would be a stepping-stone towards a future in which the friendship of the two nations would never again be strained.
The suggestion that the deep feeling of the town should be conveyed to M. Stalin by letter was adopted with enthusiasm.
Since the meeting a further donation of five guineas has been received, enabling an additional sum of 2 guineas to be sent to each fund.