Public Holiday. —ln response to a request from the leading business firms in the Borough his Worship the Mayor has declared Monday next as a general holiday.
Caledonian Sports. — A committee of the Caledonian Sports Committee canvassed the town yesterday for subscriptions for tkp sports to be held on Boxing Day, and powers of persuasion succeeded in having close on £7O placed on their liatX They have certainly taken time Jtiy the firelock in going round so eiudy,’ and as. the Race Committee have not yet sent & list out they are likely to suffer by the supineness displayed by them. The sports people have certainly stolen a march upon the innocent horsey men.
R.M. Court —The Court yesterday disposed of several petty debt cases, none of ' which were for any serious amount, and the majority of which would have been far more cheaply and satisfactorily settled through the medium of a mutual frifehd or an arbitrator. A dead set seems to'have been made in three separate cases against a farmerin the Forks district, andin one case, a tall weather-beaten and dilapidated individual pleaded ignorance of the mining of a “ sundowner.” For his information and that of others not up in colonial phraselogy, we may state that • ittndowner is a swagger who travels from r Stition to station, ostensibly looking for a job, and all the time hoping he will not wiw it. • The “ modus operand! ” of these . vagrants is to travel-until within a mile or rSOrof the bomestead of a run, and then b comfortable nap till near sundown, liiuparic is approaching he boldly walks up irouteitatibh and asks for work. No matter work is to be had or not, the tinsT is sure of mutton and damper for and a shake down. In be is ready-for a start for the on whom to do a similar The breed la not so numerous nor marked as in the old days, but BWrtft-irt *till to.be met with, l i
; Parliament at Christchurch Show. The Government have placed the Government yacht Hinemoa at the disposal of m-inkers w ishing to visit the Christchurch show, and it is believed that the opportunity will be taken advantage of by a makority of the members. The Unemployed. —We have it on good authority that some 1100 men are out of work in th! Timaru district. In the Ellesmere district men are offering themselves to farmers and contractors at 5s per day. Although work is slack in the Ashburton County we are inclined to believe that we are not so badly off as other places. The number of idle men is not large in proportion, but at the same time the prospect for work from now till harvest is not very cheering. Wages on contract works for good men still rule from 8s to 8s 6d per day.
The Lyttelton Smuggling Case. —Tlxe man Willie ms charged at the Lyttelton Court with having smuggled tobacco in his possession, was to-day lined £IOO, and ordered to be imprisoned until the fine was paid. It is no joke to be found out trying to evade Queen’s duty.
The Unemployed at Christchurch.— We learn from our own correspondent at Christchurch, that up to the present time about 140 passes have been issued by the Public Works Department to the Weka Pass and Albury extensions, which are now fully supplied with men. Passes, however, are still issued ty; those desirous of going to any part of 3 the country to look for work. Mr March took a carpenter with him South yesterday, who got work at Ashburton. The unemployed tradesmen here will doubtless be pleased to learn that Mr March is of opinion that unemployed tradesmen in Christchurch may find work in this direction if they try. Such is the tenor of Mr March’s telegram to Christchurch. A number of men who have got work elsewhere have already cleared out of Christchurch bag and baggage. A “ Rouse-About. ” —One of the many kinds of occupations in the colonies, for which no special education or training is required, is the “ rouse-about, ” There is no necessity for him to have taken a degree at any of the universities, nor is even a ciuil service examination considered necessary to qualify for the position. The colonial “ rouse-about ” resembles a poet in one respect, and in one only—he is “bora, not made.” His duties are various, indeed multifarious. According to a description given yesterday by an employer of labor, the “ rouse-about ” is expected to be a carpenter, a fencer, a cook, a baker, and “ anything else required to be done about the station,” and we should expect that occasionally he might be called in to assist as tutor, and to play operatic airs on the piano. However, tile representative of the ‘‘ profession ” which appeared before the R. M. yesterday, would not, we think, shine in either of the last mentioned lines. In fact he was described as being the reverse of clean in the kitchen, and we must say that to sit down to a square meal prepared by this specimen ‘rouse-about,” would require a good appetite and a powerful stomach, and a well answered prayer for digestion.
New Masonic Hall. —For some time past the Ashburton Freemasons have had a project in their minds of building a new hall in which to hold the meetings of their lodges. At present the Somerset Lodge holds its meetings where they have been held since the Lodge’s institution—in the Somerset sample room, while the meetings of the other two Lodges are held elsewhere. A place of meeting specially their own is always at least a comfort to any Society, and as the Freemasons in Ashburton are quite strong enough to build such a place of meeting, they will not much longer be without a hall, every arrangement having been made for an almost immediate start. Thu name chosen for the projected building is, we understand, the Somerset Masonic Hall, and the site will bo the corner of Williams and Tancred streets. The plans have been prepared by Messrs Foots and Son, and they give promise of an addition to the architecture of the town of no small importance. In style the now hall will be Doric, and the structure will be a substantial one of brick, with plastered walls. The front of the building will be stuccoed, 21ft Gin high, and double doors will give entrance to the hall. On either side of the entrance will be an ante-room, with refreshment rooms above, supplied witli gas stoves. The hall to the ceiling will be 17ft in height, 28ft 4in in width, and 70ft 4in long. As we have already said, the whole building will be plastered inside, and a dome in the centre of the ceiling will supply ventilation. The Gas Company’s mains run down to the site, and of course the will be laid on for lighting purposes, «tc. When finished the hall will be elegantly furnished, and amongst its furniture will be found a fine American organ. The cost of the undertaking will be £6OO, and will be found by Freemasons only, in £1 shares, 400 of which are already taken up. The builders will also be “free masons,” indas we have already stated, the work will begin at once. The builders names we have not yet learnt.
Water Power for Organs. The churches in Wellington are to have their organs blown on Sund lys by water power
Special Train on Show Day. —On Wednesday, 12th November, to allow the residents along the line of the Rakaia and Ashburton Forks an opportunity of spending a day at Christchurch Show, the directors of the railway have decided to run a special train from the furthest point of their line completed to the Rakaia junction. The train will start at an early hour in the morning and reach Rakaia in time to catch the first morning train north ; and will return again after the arrival of the last train in the evening. The thoughtfulness of the directors in the matter will not be without its due value in the eyes of those whom it is intended to benefit.
Cricket. —The match arranged for Monday next between the Ashburton Countj' and Mount Somers Cricket Cl id 's has been abandoned. A challenge was received to-day by the Honorary Secretary of the Ashburton Cricket Association from the Timaru Cricket Club, and a match will probably take place on the Domain ground on Wednesday next. Players selected to take part in the match New Zealand v. The World on, Saturday afternoon, are requested to be on punctually at 1.30 p.m.
Church Anniversaries in connection with the Cameron street and Se:.field Wesleyan ; i. ."civs are to be hold next iimiu'n, tin l le- ’.er about the Kith, and the latter <,n ( h,i ismias Lay.
Comedy ami T?un j.Ksqus Company. On Thursday night the Comedy Company gave the first of their two entertainments in the Town 11 dl to a full audience. Tlic company appeared again last night with like success.
Dromore Goods Shed. —The following telegram addressed by Mr E. G. Wright, M.H.K. to Messrs Saunders Brothers, lias been handed to us for publication “ Wellington, Nov. (s.—Amount for Droinore goods shed included in Conyers’ revised estimates ; therefore do not think further petition requisite. ” Fire Brigade. Lieutenant Joseph Dolman, of the Ashburton Fire Brigade, is determined not to be beaten by any difficulties he meets in making the best use of the means at the command of the corps. On Thursday afternoon, assisted by two or three other enthusiastic members, he again tackled the pipe well in front of Saunders’ Buildings, and being a practical man at work of that description, he succeeded in overcoming all difficulties, and a gang of men being put on to the engine they succeeded in throwing a jet over the buildings. It is a matter for congratulation that the perseverance of the Brigade has met with the revav.! it merits.
The Totalisator. The betting machine which caused so much anxiety to that speculative class of the community—the bookmakers —appears to have come to an untimely end at the Melbourne races. The bookmakers have all along claimed that the machine, instead of being a fair and square method <<f netting, was a huge swindle, and could, if licensed on race courses, be, in the bauds of a clever and unscrupulous operator, a most successful means of fleecing the public. Telegrams from Melbourne -air that several of the licensees of the pa • have been arrested. Only a week or r the A Jelaido Government actu.ab . -t d a ; Jill through Parliament legalising the instrument. We imagine they will feel pretty small over their “ Totalisator Act.”
Cricket. —A meeting of the committee of the Ashburton Cricket Association was held at Messrs Saunders Bros.’ office on Thursday evening. Present—Messrs S. Saunders (in the chair), Amos, Poyntz, and Main waring. Mr Poyntz reported that with Mr Wilkie he had waited upon the Domain Board, and had received a promise from the members that they would protect the interests of the Association as far as possible, but could not accede to the request for a lease of the ground, or the erection of gates applied for. Mr Mainwaring proposed and Mr Poyntz seconded, and it was carried—“ That the Secretary be instructed to request the Domain Board to move the present gate from Peters street to West street, about two chains north of junction of Peter and West streets. ” Mr Poyntz moved and Mr Amos seconded, and it was carried—“ That the Chairman be authorised to procure a grass-mower for the Association ; cost not to exceed £10.” It was decided to postpone the match against Timaru, on account of the Christchurch show taking place on the same day as that selected by the visiting team.
Valuable Horse Killed. —Mr Fergus, carrier, of Mount Somers, met with a heavy loss this morning. One of his team of horses being an entire, Mr Fergus, with a laudable idea of not allowing a horse of this description to have a chance of escaping and running at large, tied him up to the waggon with a heavy chain and left him thus made secure, and retired about midnight. The horse was made only too secure as when Mr Fergus went to look at him at daylight he found that the horse bad strangled himself. Sale of Privileges for the Ashburton Show and Races.— Mr Janies Campbell, of the firm of Aclaud, Campbell, and Co, officiated to-day in the capacity of auctioneer to dispose of the above privileges, and after informing his audience fhat his sale of similar privileges for the Christchurch events had, notwithstanding the bad times, realised fully £IOO more than on any previous occasion, put up the lots in the following order : —Show privileges—No. I—publican’s booth, Mr Quill, £26 ; No. 2—confectioner’s booth, Mr T. Strutters, £4 ; No. 3—right of sports, passed in. Total realised, £3O. The privileges of the races were then submitted by the auctioneer, and the booths elicited some spirited bidding, as will be seen by the following prices. No. I—publican's booth under the grand stand, Mr D. M'Kenzic, £27 per day, £54; No. 2 —publican’s booth, to ho erected by the purchaser, Mr T. Quill, £l9 per day, £3B; No. 3—confectioner’s booth, first choice, Mr Davidson, £8 ; No. 4—confectioner’s booth, second choice, Mr Hicks, £5 ; No. s—right of sports, withdrawn ; No. o—right of cards, Mr Wilkie, £6 ; gate money, withdrawn ; No. 8— grand stand and saddling paddock, Mr T. Strcthers, £ls ; No. 9—yards not sold. Total amount realised by the privileges disposed of, £126. The amount realised last year was £207 10s, which amount included £95 10s for gate money, right of sports and horse yards, and the committee having decided to put a reserve equal to about CO per cent on those prices this year, and the bidding not reaching that limit they were withdrawn, and should any speculative individual feel inclined for a profitable investment the secretary is open to deal with him. So far, however, the so-called “ miserable failure” of last year promises to be repeated, and the Racing Club are to be congratulated on their success. Subsequent to the sale the gates were disposed of to Mr Hay T. Smith, for L 55, this bringing up the sales to Llßl, with the right of sports and horse yards still to dispose of.
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