29 June 1901
Sir, A cartoon in a Manchester weekly
a short time ago represented the Dukinfield Corporation
as being so jealous of "local interests"
as to prefer their £16,000 Town Hall being opened
by a local alderman rather than seek the aid of
dukes, earls or MPs from far off. The policy of
"local interests" is to be highly commended,
and if our representatives acted fairly and squarely
up to that policy, they would secure the approbation
of every ratepayer in Dukinfield; but it is very
doubtful whether they do.
The average Dukinfield councillor,
in asking the suffrage of the ratepayers, is simply
seeking to advance his own importance and the
gratification of his personal vanity. He seems
to care no more for "local interests"
than he does for the interests of Choctaw Indians.
He comes at election times smiling and smirking
and ready to promise anything from free clogs
to pianos, but when he reclines in the seats of
the mighty, he looks down from his giddy height
and smiles disdainfully at the common herd which
grovels in the dust at his feet. Those who placed
him in that exalted position are beneath his notice
until election time comes round again, when he
makes his appearance with more smiles, more smirks,
and more promises.
You will invariably find in his
election address a paragraph something like the
following: "All contracts will (where possible)
be given to local firms." Bah! It is all
bunkum! Local contracts dont interest him
half so much as a trip to London at the ratepayers
expense. What thought does he give to Dukinfields
welfare whilst he is enjoying himself in some
palatial hotel, where he may be found smoking
fat cigars and quaffing bumpers of sparkling wine?
The majority of those on the Council,
whether professional gentlemen or tradesmen, are
dependent upon the people of Dukinfield for a
living, and yet when public money is being spent
they find it convenient to forget that there is
such a town in existence as poor old dirty Dukinfield.
Orders which would mean a great deal to the small
Dukinfield trader are sent out of the town and
placed in the hands of large firms who have not
the remotest connection with the district. If
there was any advantage to be gained, either in
price, quality of workmanship, one could understand
the local man being absolutely and completely
ignored, but when it is otherwise, it is neither
more nor less than a public scandal.
Why, even when in the matter of
the "collation", it was deemed necessary
to send to Manchester for the provisions and wines
to tickle the delicate palates and tempt the dainty
appetites of the snobs on the Council, whilst
the charge for tickets was so prohibitive that
the ordinary ratepayer was perforce excluded from
ONLY A. RATEPAYER
PUBLIC PROSECUTOR AND "HEAD
Hyde Customers Adventure
At the Bow-street Police Court on Friday, Lawrence
COHEN, hairdresser, and Samuel POU, his assistant,
were charged on remand with fraud. The allegations
are that when customers went to the defendants
shop to have their hair cut, they were informed
that they were suffering from a scalp disease which
would cause them to lose their hair unless they
tried the defendants remedy, which was to
have the head steamed. When they consented to this
operation a charge of 3s 6d was made.
Thomas OLDHAM, of Gee Cross, Hyde,
said that on 29th May he went to the defendants
shop for a shave. After this was done the assistant
said, "Three shillings and six pence for
head steaming." He retorted, "Ill
see you further before I pay 3s 6d." He was
not allowed to leave the shop, and after some
trouble, witness consented to have his head steamed,
and paid 3s 6d. He then left the shop and made
a complaint to a policeman, after which his money
was returned. Mr DE RUTZEN said that in consequence
of the numerous complaints received by the police.
He had sent the papers to the Public Prosecutor,
who on the next occasion would proceed with the
prosecution. The accused were again remanded on
CHARGE OF UNLAWFUL WOUNDING
A Solicitors Clerk Assaulted Scene
at a Levy
At the Dukinfield Police Court on Thursday,
a married woman named Hannah WOOD, of 10 Lamb-street,
was charged on remand from the previous court (on
bail) with unlawfully wounding George Harold OKELL,
on the 19th inst. There was also a cross summons
in which WOOD charged OKELL with assaulting her.
Mr J H POWNALL appeared for OKELL and Mr
James BRADBURY for WOOD.
Mr POWNALL said his client was a
clerk in the employ of Messrs HATON and WATSON,
solicitors, of Ashton-under-Lyne. The defendant
and her husband seemed to have a considerable
number of County Court summonses against them,
with the result that it had been a difficult matter
for the bailiffs to obtain possession of their
premises in order to levy upon the goods. In consequence
of the bailiffs being well known, it was found
necessary to resort to a little strategy.
Accordingly, on Wednesday morning
week, Mr OKELL went to the defendants house,
the bailiffs being a short distance away. On arriving
at the door, he knocked. The defendant, however,
made her appearance from a neighbouring house
in the same street. He told her that he had come
from the office of Messrs HATON and WATSON to
see about the particular matter in which the firm
had an execution. She unlocked the door and invited
him in. When they got inside she locked the door.
Shortly afterwards, the defendants brother,
a man named George DALE, knocked on the door.
He was admitted and the door was locked again.
The bailiffs then made their appearance
at the front door. Defendant and her brother saw
them through the window and they rushed to the
door and took out the key. OKELL seemed to get
alarmed and turned round to see whether the door
was still really locked and the next thing he
knew was he received a violent blow in the eye
with a poker wielded by the defendant Mrs WOOD.
She threatened to do so and so for him, knife
him, and used similar expressions. He had to escape
by the back door.
Mr Ralph BATES: Did he want to get
out? Mr POWNALL: Yes, he wanted to get
out after the blow. Mr BATES: There was
a deal of fixing to get in, why was he so anxious
to get out? Mr POWNALL: He got such a warm
reception that he was anxious, I suppose, to leave
the premises alive. (Laughter.)
OKELL was found to have sustained
a nasty cut over the eye. The wound was bleeding,
and he was taken into a neighbours house
where the eye was bathed. He afterwards went to
Dr MILLERs surgery, and there the wound
was stitched. On arriving in Ashton he saw Dr
COOKE, the family doctor, who advised him to stay
at home for a few days as he was not fit for work.
Since these proceedings were taken,
a cross-summons for assault had been taken out,
no doubt at the suggestion of Mr BRADBURY. There
was no assault at all on the part of OKELL, and
there were no marks of any kind. Even when arrested,
the woman never made any complaint whatever against
OKELL. The whole thing was preposterous, and he
was not there for the purpose of assaulting her.
Mr BRADBURY thought it would save
the time of the court if they reduced the charge
to one of common assault. The Bench would come
to the conclusion it was a very trivial matter.
Mr POWNALL said his was a case of unlawful wounding
at present, and it would be necessary to take
After evidence was given, the
defendant was committed to take her trial at the
Knutsford Quarter Sessions which were to be held
the following week. The assault case WOOD v. OKELL,
it was agreed, should be heard after the Sessions.
Bail was allowed, defendant in £10, and two sureties
of £5 each.
DEATH OF MR W THOMPSON The friends of
Mr William THOMPSON, of Birch-lane, will regret
to learn of his death which took place on Friday
week at his residence after a very short illness.
He was well known and highly respected in the neighbourhood.
He was a boilermaker by trade and a member of the
Dukinfield Branch of the Boilermakers and Iron and
Steel Shipbuilders Association. The member
have expressed their deep sympathy with the widow
and relatives, and at his funeral the deceased brother
was carried to his last resting place by Messrs
DEAN, FLETCHER, NEWTON, LOYNDS, HAMER and HURST,
as representatives of the above order.
THE GLYNN AGAIN At
the Police Court on Thursday, John GLYNN, collier,
was charged with being drunk and disorderly in
Old-road on the 24th. Defendant appeared,
and the Clerk remarked that he was then under
the influence of drink. Constable DALE
stated that at 11.30 on Monday forenoon he was
in the Old-road, and saw the defendant in a drunken
state and cursing. His wife was also with him.
She was drunk, and fell in the street, and he
had to lock her up. Superintendent COOPER informed
the Bench that the defendant had been up several
times, and he was not sober now. Mr BATES:
He seems to be one of those men who ought to be
in some home. Superintendent COOPER: I
have spoken to him on that point. For the last
three months defendant and his wife have not been
sober a day. I think it is only fair to say that
he will receive a second summons for being drunk
on licensed premises and the publican will be
brought before the magistrates as well. Fined
10s 6d and costs, or 14 days.
OFF TO WEST AFRICA
On Tuesday evening a very pleasant time was spent
at the Central Working Mens Club and Institute,
Church-street, when an interesting presentation
was made to Mr Isaac BATES, one of the member,
prior to his departure for West Africa. Mr BATES
came home on leave after serving a number of years
in West Africa and whilst here he has married,
and only returned from his honeymoon on Tuesday.
The presentation, which consisted of a gentlemens
handsome dressing case, subscribed for by his
fellow members, was handed to Mr BATES by Mr John
HARROP, who in a neat speech assured him of the
goodwill and esteem of the members of the club
who wished him good fortune in the position he
was about to occupy.
SCHOOL BOARD CASES
At the Police Court on Thursday, William NEWSHAM
was summoned AT THE INSTANCE OF THE School Board
for not sending his child regularly to school.
Mr ROBERTS, attendance officer, informed
the bench that there was no reason why the child
should not attend school. The parents had been
very indulgent in the past, until now they had
very little control over the children. In three
months there had only been three attendances.
He reminded the bench that this was the first
case under the new by-laws and they had the power
to inflict a fine of up to 20s. Mr BATES
characterised it as a bad case, and fined defendant
10s, including costs. There appeared to be nothing
more careless that the defendant, his wife and
the whole boiling of them.
Robert ACTON was charged with a
similar offence in respect to his son Robert,
aged 13, who had not made any attendances since
April. The lad was illegally working full time
but he was required to attend school until he
was 14. George CHEGWIN was summoned in
respect to William Henry, aged 11. Mr ROBERTS
said there was no effort whatever being made to
get the boy to school. It was undoubtedly a case
of gross neglect on the part of the parents. The
attendances had been 53 out of a possible 212
times. In fining the defendant 7s 6d, Mr BATES
observed that some people were chronically disposed
never to do right.
A FORMER ASHTONIAN IN AUSTRALIA
Gentlemen, - I have taken the liberty of sending
copies of the Melbourne daily papers relating to
the visit of the Duke of Cornwall and York to open
the first Federal Parliament of Australia and found
a new nation under the British flag in the southern
seas. I have sent twelve of the Melbourne Argus,
and twelve of the Melbourne Age. I was born
in Ashton-under-Lyne, and lived in Cowhill-lane
until I went to sea 23 years ago. I was one of the
crew of HMS "Bacchante" (difficult to
read Ed) and was in that vessel with the
Princes when they went round the world. I have enclosed
you a cutting out of the paper of 20th May 1901,
where I had an interview with the Duke while he
was in Melbourne. I left Ashton 17 years ago for
the last time, and now I reside at Essendon, near
Melbourne, in the State of Victoria. Trusting that
you will accept them in the spirit in which they
are sent, and that everything is very prosperous
in the old town, and wishing you all every prosperity.
I have the honour to be, gentlemen, your
most obedient servant.
DISORDERLY SCENES AT A FUNERAL
The interment of Mary Annie THOMAS, the young
woman who poisoned herself with carbolic acid at
Chadderton on Friday, took place on Tuesday at Chadderton
Cemetery. Miss THOMAS was well known in the district,
and a large number of people were in attendance.
At the graveside, the scenes against the step-father
(Mr THOMAS) were of a most unruly character, one
woman going so far as to threaten to push him into
the open grave. The ceremony was gone through, but
on the carriages returning to Burnley-lane, the
man THOMAS was surrounded by a throng of angry females
who gave him several blows in the face and knocked
his hat off, handling him very severely. When the
man got out of their clutches, he stood on the doorstep
jeering, which only served to aggravate the crowd
who vowed they would make it hot for him. It will
be remembered that the man THOMAS was said to be
morally responsible for the death of Miss THOMAS.
TOY PISTOL FATALITY AT HOOLEY
The inhabitants of Hooley Hill were shocked
on Sunday evening by a distressing toy pistol fatality,
which threw quite a gloom over the district. The
victim was a youth named Daniel SCOTT, aged about
16, son of Alfred SCOTT, an employee of Messrs JACKSON,
HYDE, and REALDING, in Groby-road.
About seven oclock in the
evening some boys were practising shooting with
a toy pistol in Groby-road. SCOTT was walking
across the road when a bullet from the pistol
struck him in the temple and killed him instantly.
The shot was fired by a youth named David CROMPTON,
who was so shocked by what he had done that he
swooned away, and a doctor had to be fetched to
him, and it was nearly an hour before he could
be brought round. When he came to his senses he
was conducted to an electric car, and conveyed
to the police station where he was detained in
PRISONER BEFORE THE MAGISTRATES
Superintendent Hewitt said that the prisoner
was charged with what was purely and simply a
case of manslaughter. Prisoner and a number of
boys in what was called Poplar-street and the
field adjoining. The prisoner had what was called
a Derringer pistol, which fired small leaden slugs,
somewhat similar in size to that which was commonly
called crow-shot. The deceased boy took a penny
and placed it on a stump, making use of words
to this effect: "If tha can hit it,
tha; con have it." He turned away, and immediately
the prisoner fired a shot with the pistol which
struck SCOTT on the left temple from which he
died. The shooting being in a public highway,
and being an unlawful act, and having caused death,
Chairman: The unfortunate part is
that this is not the first case that has occurred.
Superintendent HEWITT: Only a short time
ago there was a case in Dukinfield. The pistol
was hereupon produced in court, and the magistrates
after examining it asked how the cartridges were
put in. Inspector HUMPHRIES produced a box of
the cartridges used, and explained the working
of the toy pistol.
Chairman (to prisoner): Where did
you get it? Off another boy. How
much did you give for it? 10s 6d. This
boy got it from Greenwoods in the Avenue
at Ashton. Chairman: Can a boy have a pistol like
this without license? Superintendent HEWITT:
He should have a license; he is liable for not
having a license. He is liable under the Towns
Police Clause Act, the Highway Act; and also liable
for not having a license.
The Chairman: There is no doubt
about it being an accident, but it is a serious
matter, if it is an accident. It is a terrible
thing. I do not know that anything can be done
with regard to warning these people. Prisoner
was remanded till Wednesday, July 3rd, bail was
allowed, himself in £100, and two sureties of
£50 each. The sureties were the father of the
prisoner and Mr Joseph RADFORD, landlord of the
Sun Inn, Hooley Hill.