Friday 31 March 1916
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The above is a reproduction of a water-colour drawing of Manor House, Shipley, which served as the Council Office for thirty-five years and which was demolished last year to prepare a site for new offices. The picture, which was presented at Tuesday’s meeting to the chairman, Cllr Thos Hill, on behalf of the Council, is the gift of Mr P Jones Williams, the Council’s architect, whose work it is. It has been framed in oak taken from the roof timbers of the Manor House.
Sir James Roberts, owner of Saltaire Mills, appeared at a tribunal in Bradford which considered the appeal of his son Harry Roberts, whose plea earlier in the month that he should be exempt from conscription on the grounds that he was indispensable to the firm was turned down. Neither man had appeared at the first tribunal. The report of the original hearing suggested that Sir James had threatened to close down the mills if his son was conscripted and it would seem that had caused a great deal of comment because Sir James asked permission to make a statement at the start of the new appeal. Englishman ‘I need hardly say that unless I thought my son indispensable to the Saltaire business, he would have enlisted a year ago. I pointed out to him at the time that he would not deserve the name of Englishman if he were not anxious to go into the army at that time. ‘But I also pointed out to him that without his assistance it would be impossible for me to carry on the business at Saltaire as, during the two previous years, I had found it necessary, in order to keep myself fit
and in condition, to spend something like a third of my time away from the business. ‘And I said also that unless he could be retained at Saltaire it would be impossible for me to go on. With much difficulty I succeeded in persuading him that it was his duty to give up the idea of enlisting.’ Sir James added that a large number of men from Saltaire Mills were serving and also that he had been led to believe that the Shipley Tribunal understood that his son was vital to the future of the business. Inevitable He went on to say that he had told the company secretary that he could not carry on the business without his son and this had been passed on to the Tribunal. He added: ‘Now this is the statement in which I am alleged to have threatened to close the Saltaire works. I submit as a fact that I made no such threat; that it was merely an intimation of the inevitable.’
Challenged to stick to facts on his son’s importance to the business, Sir James offered to submit to questioning by the tribunal but they said they would prefer to question his son. Second Lieutenant Molesworth, the military representative on the tribunal, asked Harry Roberts: Do you consider that in the national interest it is necessary for you to remain with your father? – Yes Health Would it be possible to carry on your father’s business if you were not there? – I do not think so. It depends a great deal on my father’s health. After some discussion about the son’s precise role, Lieut Molesworth asked: Are you the controlling mind when your father is not at the works? – Yes. Asked by another member of the tribunal why no substitute could be found, the son said: Well, it would take considerable training. There are other people in the mills who know the work, are there not? – No, not the work of general supervision. They could easily learn it, could they not? – I do not think so. If they could easily learn it a place of that sort would not be worth much. The appeal was again refused.
Sir James Roberts appeals against son’s call up
‘I am alleged to have threatened to close the Saltaire works. I submit as a fact that I made no such threat; that it was merely an intimation of the inevitable.’
West Riding magistrates sympathised with the problems of Francis Clad, a German national living in Nab Wood, Shipley, who was before them for not complying with a court order. At an earlier hearing, Mr Clad had been ordered to leave his house because of non-payment of rates. Albert Smith, the chief assistant overseer, said that ‘as the defendant lived in a large house and could not plead poverty, the council would have difficulty in excusing him from paying rates.’ But Mr Clad, who despite being a registered alien had one son serving with British forces in France and another interned in Germany as a civil prisoner of war, said he had tried to sell or let the house but had so far been unsuccessful. He had formerly been in the wool trade but owing to his nationality now found it impossible to find work. The bench gave him an additional two months to resolve the position.
Court sympathises with problems of a German living in England
CLASSIFIED ADVERTS LE FRANCAIS – Un Anglais (24 ans), désire rencontrer un Français ou Belge qui enseigne le français avancé. Principalement la conversation. – Ecrivez: Box 20 “Express” Office, Shipley. WANTED, LAD, half-timer or full-timer for Firelighter making. Holgate & Co, 1 Park Road, Thackley. LADIES - Nurse Hammond’s improved Remedies act in a few hours when all else fails. Success guaranteed - send stamped envelope for FREE SAMPLE to H A Hammond, 304 High Holborn, London. BEST Prices given for Old Iron, Bottles, Jars or any kind of lumber: send P.C. R Gough, Westfield Lane, Idle. GOOD middle-bred BOAR for service - J S Holt, “Hare and Hounds”, Wrose. GOOD middle-bred BOAR for service - Scarfe Bros, 13 Wrose Hill Terrace, Windhill, Shipley. NO DEAD CHICKS. - To make your poultry pay you must rear every chick and the only sure way to do this is to feed them for the first three weeks exclusively on Armitage’s No 1 Original Dry Chick Food, andn follow on with Armitage’s No 2 Grow- on Chicken Mixture and Armitage’s No 3 Small Chicken Corn. Manufactured by Armitage Brothers Ltd., Poulty Food Specialists, Nottingham. Sold by Horne Bros., Commercial Street, Shipley, Frizinghall and Baildon.
In making his annual report to the council, Cllr E Reynolds, chairman of the finance committee, was able to say that there would be no increase in the district rate. Because some mill properties had been unoccupied the rates had produced £440 less than the £28,200 estimated and the total income of £46,853 was also slightly down on forecast. But fortunately they had managed to keep the costs down and so overall had a surplus of £154. His report was greeted favourably in a Shipley Times & Express editorial. ‘Substantial economy has been effected during the past twelve months, particularly in the cost of street lighting. But this is only of a temporary character and to utilise the saving in the reduction of the rates would be bad policy. ‘It must not be forgotten that the district rate of 4s 8d in the pound is the same figure as it was fifteen years ago. That being so, the council are to be congratulated on an administration which, notwith- standing the heavy demands made upon local authorities for works of a public character, they have been able to avoid making greater calls upon the ratepayers.’
Council avoid rate increase for 15th year
In his monthly report, Dr W Foster, the Medical Officer of Health, reported that there had been 35 births during the month and 32 deaths. There had been six cases of diphtheria, two of scarlet fever and four of measles. Three deaths were caused by phthisis. There was only one infant’s death under 12 months. The low infant mortality rate of 28 per 1,000 births was ‘the most satisfactory feature of the report.’ Dr Clayton had visited the town and said she thought there were insufficient staff to carry out the combined duties of health visitor and school nurse and recommended the appointment of a full time district visitor. The Local Government Board was prepared to make a grant for half the cost of such an appointment.
Low infant mortality rate
After Shipley MP Oswald Partington made a statement saying he deplored the fact that different church denominations were not friendly towards each other, the Shipley Times & Express leapt to the defence of the churches. ‘Whatever may have been the state of things previously, the churches of the district have been drawing more closely together ever since the Rev Bernard Herklots became vicar sixteen months ago and in no parish is there a more friendly feeling existing between the religious denominations. ‘There is plenty of evidence that the churches at Shipley are pulling together for all they are worth and are desirous of continuing to do so ‘To “ring the changes” on a verse by an American poetess, the sentiments of the members of all the churches at Shipley are – as they should be - well expressed thus: All roads that lead to God are good What matters if your church or mine? All centre at the Goal Divine Of Love’s eternal brotherhood. ‘Sadly too long have the churches magnified their differences and paid too little heed to the matters in which they are in agreement. That is one of the reasons why so many have held aloof from religious bodies. ‘The various sections of the Christian church should be like the various columns of an army in battle – all aiming at defeating the common enemy. Unfortunately, they have not been so in the past and generally speaking they are not so today. ‘Thank heaven, one result of the war is that they are being drawn more closely together…Now the churches have a better opportunity than ever they had before. If they seize it they can go forward to the future with hope and confidence that success will attend their efforts.’
Shipley churches lead in unity