Shipley Unionist Club gave a rousing welcome to Sgt Sam Meekosha (right), the Bradford lad who had been awarded the Victoria Cross for his actions during the battle of Ypres.The citation for Sgt Meekosha, the son of a Polish father and English mother who moved to Bradford in 1893, read: ‘When the senior NCOs had either been killed or wounded, Cpl Meekosha at once took command, sent a runner for assistance and, in spite of no less than ten more big shells falling within 20 yards of him continued to dig out the wounded and buried men in full view of the enemy and at close range from the German trenches. By his promptness and magnificent courage and determination, he saved at least four lives.’On his visit to Shipley, ‘he was with Sgt Major Rhodes, with whose company he went out to France as a private.‘The two heroes had previously had tea with Cllr F.F. Rhodes, president of the Shipley Volunteer Corps, who is brother to Sgt Major Rhodes.’
A long letter from a reader signing himself ‘Loyalist’ expressed concern about the rush to conscript men to the armed forces.His letter started: ‘It was with considerable expectation that I took up my copy of the Express last week but with disappointment I laid it down.’What had disturbed him was the lack of discussion about the balance between the needs of the army for manpower in Europe and the needs of trade at home.‘We are told by our political leaders that we are engaged in this war to kill Prussian militarism. But surely it is not needful for us to adopt Prussian methods to do it? Yet this appears to be what is being done by those at the head of our military forces.’He quickly adds that he should not be taken for a conscientious objector. Although he is past fighting age, ‘I gave my only son to fight for his King and Country in August 1914, just after the war commenced. Given their lives‘My brothers and sisters have done equally well and there is not one amongst my nephews of fighting age but what is doing and has for many months past been doing his little bit to avenge Belgium.‘My brother, who is over fifty, is serving. Two of his sons have given their lives in fighting for the King, seven other of my nephews are with the forces.’He goes on to say he is confident the war will be won but it will take men, munitions and money to make sure the allied war machine keeps going.‘This brings us to the question – Can
we go on helping our allies in this manner if the trade of our country is crippled by the inordinate recruiting of men who are needed at home to keep the wheels of industry moving?‘We have raised millions of men. Our army is no longer described as “contemptible.” Mammoth is more correct!‘Mr Asquith has told us the war is costing us £5m per day. By loans and taxes we are doing much towards finding that huge total. Increased taxation and more loans are yet needed. How can they be supplied if the sinews which have provided them in the past are now to be used, not in providing but in expending?He complains that the military has been given to much power – ‘military men never were business men’ – and pleads that neither ‘they nor any other power should be allowed to dominate and kill the industries of the country.‘There are some in our midst who agree with me saying we must win this war but they seem to think we can only do it by rushing every man to the colours. This view, I am persuaded, is wrong.‘The Board of Trade returns, we are told, show that a large amount of plant is already standing idle, the workers having been withdrawn for the Army.
‘This consequence of multiplying soldiers must at a certain point become past remedy; and everybody who takes an all-round view and realises how vital our continued production is to the winning of the war ought to bear it carefully in mind.‘We should commit national suicide if we listened only to the need for soldiers and allowed the military authorities to kill industry by unlimited demands.Money and munitions‘Our soldiers alone cannot win the war and they need to be reminded of this. Money and munitions are needed, yet both will be lacking if the men are taken in extreme numbers. The country has to be maintained and if all our resource are devoted to militarism we shall not be able to carry on.’Referring to claims by some men at recruitment tribunals that they should be spared call-up because they are indispensable, something that had been mocked in several cases, he points out: ‘There are many men holding inferior positions yet they are quite as indispensable to the output of their firm as the manager himself. One has to wear the boot to know where it pinches.‘Too much seems to be made of the superficial view that unless a business is actually producing something which is needed for the furtherance of war, it need not be kept going.Fallacious‘That is fallacious. The trade of the country is bound together in many ways which are not apparent on the surface and many businesses which to those unacquainted with their working seem to be of little importance, are nevertheless of considerable value to the country.‘They provide money for the taxes and the loans, even if they do not supply the men.‘If we are to find munitions and money our trades and industries must be kept going but if the military representatives are allowed too much sway we shall lose our men and in losing them, lose munitions and money; and to carry the point to its logical conclusion, lose the war because we failed in munitions an money.’
Too much recruiting could risk losing the war
‘We should commit national suicide if we listened only to the need for soldiers and allowed the military authorities to kill industry by unlimited demands’
Baildon woolstapler, Ernest Taylor, was charged with driving a motorcycle and sidecar without lights.‘P.C. King said the defendant was driving near Hall Cliff at 12.30 in the morning without light. Defendant had told the officer that the light was all right when he was in Browgate.‘Supt Warburton said that the defendant had not appeared nor had he sent his licence. He therefore asked for a severe penalty.‘Defendant was ordered to pay £1.’
Baildon biker given severe penalty for ignoring the court
‘Olde Worlde’ delights to raise cash for church
‘The Idle Baptist Sunday School has been transformed into a village street like those in the “days of yore” on the occasion of the “Ye Olde Village Fayre” which was held on Saturday, Tuesday and Wednesday.‘On either side the tiny cottages, embowered in the beauty of creeping plants and scented flowers, were for the nonce turned into shops, for it is Fair Day.‘The requirements of the visitors had evidently been anticipated. The smart-faced dames of Lilac Lodge and the Dove Close, confident in the value of their wares, pleasingly but compellingly, offered them for sale.Demure maidens‘Fair demure maidens shyly commend the dainty and even delectable good things in the Bower, Hawthorne House and sweet Briar Nook.‘From Rose and Laburnam Cottages the stronger tones of the proprietors proclaimed the sterner sex.‘At the top of the village, in the street itself, most elaborate and enticing catering had been arranged by the joint effort of many cottagers as befitting so ambitious a scheme.‘An Eastern Queen, Maids of Honour, Slaves, Fairies, lead characters to the scene, while childish voices, carolling in sweetest song, complete a delightful whole.‘The object of the Fayre was to raise the sum of £500, the amount required to remove the liabilities incurred by the enlargement and alteration of the school and the installing of new heating apparatus for the church and school premises.’
WANTEDWasherwoman wanted (good), Mondays, 8-6. Write Box 2, Express Office, Shipley.Organist wanted for Windhill Spiritual Church and School; state terms. Apply to Mr Kitchen, 7 Mary Street, Saltaire, Shipley.Work wanted for Horse and Cart or Waggon, a day or piece. Apply R Gough, 31 Westfield Lane, Idle.Wanted, GIRLS and BOYS leaving school to learn work in Spinning Mill; good wages paid whilst learning. Apply T and H Harper Ltd, Dyehouse, Mills, Apperley Bridge.Shipley Urban District Council Wanted for Accountants Office, well educated GIRL. Applic-ations stating age etc to be sent to the undersigned on or before Saturday, March 11th, 1916. I Lindow, Clerk to the Council, Somerset House, Shipley.Ladies wanted to join Mrs Saville’s Whitsuntide Club for Costumes and Children’s Dresses. The New Blouse and Fent Shop, Idle Green (next Skirrow Grocer).
‘Height in millinery and width in skirt are going to be the predominating notes in all the models for spring and early summer; those and the high and wide collar will mark the fashions of 1916.‘They are all becoming, too, and they are all economical, for the little toques are easy work for the home milliner and the lingerie collars brighten and smarten any costume.‘The short skirts, like somebody’s pen, are a boon and a blessing; for they gather no dust or mud, need little brushing, and come out fresh and dainty every time after a shake and a night’s repose in the wardrobe.‘So clothes just now all lend themselves to war economies.‘As I have intimated before, the large picture hat with eccentric but graceful curves and beautifully feathered, is coming entirely into its own again.