Friday 29 March 1918
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Inflation hitting a working man’s wife
There is still a difference of opinion as to what extent the cost of  living has increased but a cutting has reached us pointing to a rise of at least 50 per cent in the last half century in the price of things which every working man’s wife has to stock. Fifty years ago, in March 1868, a tradesman was advertising the following parcel at a sovereign and we are assured that it would cost 31 shillings today: 2lbs of tea, 2lbs coffee, 2lbs loaf sugar, 14lbs moist sugar, 3½lbs pale soap, 2lbs currants, 1lb raisins, ¼lb mixed peel, 2oz spice, 1lb pearl sago, ½lb cornflour, 2 nutmegs, ¼lb mustard, 3½lbs rice, 2lbs barley, quart of peas, 6 packets washing powder, ½lb starch, 1oz blue, 2 packets blacking, 2oz blacklead, ¼lb chicory, ¼lb carbonate soda and a tablet of toilet soap.
Council oppose ‘dishonest’ government proposals on funding working class housing
What Cllr Harry Pitts described as “a dishonest scheme” was mentioned at Tuesday’s meeting of the Shipley Urban Council at which the circular letter of the Local Government Board regarding schemes for the housing of the working classes came under review. The Board are prepared to grant assistance to local authorities in carrying out their schemes by offering to pay 75 per cent of the actual deficit on the letting of the houses, the balance of 25 per cent to be provided out of the local rates. Cllr Hirst was anxious to see houses erected in Shipley for the working classes but thought the offer of the Government was inadequate. Burden He moved at a committee meeting that a letter be addressed to the Local Government Board stating that in the opinion of the Council the offer of 75 per cent assistance to local authorities was not adequate, as it would leave too great a burden on the local rates. The motion was seconded by Cllr Bradley and carried unanimously.
Cllr Reynolds called attention to this resolution by the committee and Cllr Hirst had only expressed a pretty general view when he said that 75 per cent did not adequately represent the assistance due. Cllr Harry Pitts said the resolution was not unanimous, as stated, and was never likely to be so far as he was concerned. On the scheme the Local Government Board was evidently anticipating a hundred per cent loss – 75 per cent for the taxpayers and 25 per cent for the ratepayers. He should never support any scheme with such percentages. The clerk, Mr I Lindow, interjected: “Of loss?” Cllr Pitts: “Yes. Timber, stone and cement have all gone up over 100 per cent and it seems to me to be a miracle how they are going to build houses for the working classes today.
“Many hundreds of people in Shipley have bought their own houses and I don’t see why they should be called upon to pay higher rates for those who want cottages in the future. “We could have built 100 houses before the war started if we had not been kept back. The speed they move at in London is so slow that they meet themselves coming back on many an occasion. Miracle “To talk about a scheme like this is bad enough and is no credit to this Council and there ought to be another way of providing these houses. I don’t know how they will do it; it will be a miracle. “I shall never be in favour of this scheme as it is a dishonest one and a disgusting thing to suggest. I have never wanted anyone to finance my schemes and I am not going to finance other people’s for a loss for the ratepayers or the taxpayers.” Cllr Learoyd said Cllr H Pitts was not the only one who was against subsidising the scheme out of the rates and Cllr Bateson said he also was opposed to it.
“We could have built 100 houses before the war started if we had not been kept back. The speed they move at in London is so slow that they meet themselves coming back on many an occasion.”
Cllr Reynolds explained to Shipley Council why he considered an increase in rates was necessary. For the coming year the total requirements amounted to £50,781 and the income of the various committees would amount to £19,577. Thus, if they did not use the balance of last year’s account, there was a sum required from the rates of £31,204. Last year it was £29,500 so that it was absolutely necessary to ask for an increased rate to meet expenditure. The present rateable value of the district was £142,140 which was really the same as last because of the absolute stoppage of all building operations and thus there was no help coming from the rating of new property. Reserve As a penny in the pound would realise £527 it would be seen that it was necessary to ask for a rate of five shillings in the pound. This would meet requirements and leave a small balance to put to the district reserve fund which currently stood at £4,384. Last year the rate was 4s 8d in the pound and as the poor rate was to be lowered by 2d, it meant that the total rate for
the town would be 2d more than last year, namely 9s 4d in the pound. Argued “This,” commented Cllr Reynolds, “is the highest amount ever asked for from the Shipley ratepayers. The district rate has twice previously been at 5s in the pound, namely in 1899 and again in 1911, but at those periods the poor rate stood at 3s and 3s 8d. “It will no doubt be argued by some that there is no need to retain so large a working balance but in my opinion as chairman of the Finance Committee, and in the opinion of the whole of the members of that committee, it is most desirable that the Council should reserve that sum to meet demands which may arise from time to time. “And though this rate is the highest yet asked for it will need most careful watching of expenditure by the officials of the various committees and the strictest regard by every committee to seeing that no extra and unestimated work is done, if there is to be any likelihood of a reduction in the rates next year. “I am afraid even if the war is over immediately, it will be a few years before there is any material increased in the rateable value of the town.”
Shipley ratepayers face record demand
There having been considerable loss at the Shipley Cemetery owing to interment charges and the charges for the land being inadequate to meet the increased cost of labour and material and the charge on loans, it has been decided that from 1st April 1918, the following advances on the scale of charges in force before the war be approved: On land, 25 per cent; on interments 50 per cent, with corresponding advances in the charges for planting graves and fixing monuments, headstones etc. Cllr Hirst informed the Urban Council on Tuesday that the committee had had to adopt rather a serious measure but he thought it could be said that it was absolutely necessary.
Increase in funeral costs
The Primitive Methodists of Windhill were agreeably surprised to learn yesterday week through Capt Donald Horsfall of Cross Hills, who was opening the third day of their bazaar, that he had been authorised to state that a gentleman had offered to give £100 to the objects of the bazaar if by the last day, Saturday, they had touched £420. This, the captain added, would give them the £520 required to liquidate the debt on the church and the school and to meet the current liabilities. The gift seemed well assured by the Thursday night as the amount in hand then was £394 and the close of the bazaar on Saturday over £600 had been realised, including the £100 which transpired to be the gift of Mr John Cousin Ogden of Windhill, a son ofhte late Mr Jonas Ogden, Wood End Mills. Mrs Thomas Hall received purses containing £16 8s 7d from the scholars for the bazaar. Miss May Chanter was resonsible for assembling the excellent concert talent.
Generous donor boosts Methodists
It was stated to the Shipley Urban Council on Tuesday that a letter had been received from a resident in the Moorhead district, complaining of the nuisance – from which the whole neighbourhood was suffering – from the effluvia arising from Saltaire tip. Nuisance The Clerk stated that he had communicated with the owners and that Saltaire Mills now wrote that they had arranged for the extinction of the tip. Cllr J Pitts said this was pleasant news as a portion of the tip had been a big nuisance and an offence to a large number of people. He believed that the firm had done their uttermost and gone to great expense already to stop it.
Relief from Saltaire tip
Nearly five tons of waste food were collected at Shipley in February and sold for pig food. This led Cllr J Pitts to state at Tuesday’s meeting of the Urban Council that 62½ tons had been collected during the year and that it was very creditable to the sanitary inspector that he had begun systems for the collection of waste food and waste paper. Of the latter, 6 tons 6 cwt were collected in February, including 15cwts from factories or for the year, about 74 tons. If all the residents would keep their waste food, the collection would be considerably greater.
Waste food recycled
A confirmation service at the Shipley Parish Church on Saturday attracted many candidates from Shipley, Windhill, Idle and Baildon and there was a large congregation.
Confirmation service
Praise for school
The congratulations of the Shipley Education Committee have been extended to Mr R Denison, headmaster of the Central Upper Standard Boys’ School and to his staff and scholars on the high percentage of attendance.
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