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ON THE ASPHALT.

[By AtTOLYCus.]

" A snapper up of unconsidered trifles." — Shakespeare. " I fought for my own hand."—Scott.

At last the Borough Council has decided to attend to its business. For the past two years or so, it has devoted most of its time and funds to the Domain. We have now a swimming bath that was not an absolute necessity by any means; we have a sports ground that is certainly a luxury, and has ( afforded those of us who take amusement in a row at least one or two grins while the cycling men put on frills and the Council crumpled them up. No small amount of work has been done in the Domain at all, and perhaps it is better so. Perhaps, after all, it is better that the recreation ground should be put to rights, and beautified to the fullest extent. But it is a question yet whether the necessary work about the town—and for the proper doing of which the Council exists—ought to have been interrupted to admit of the Domain being seen 'to. Ahyhow,' work in the town is to begin. Several chains of channelling are to be done on the western side of the town. At present the water flows in rough trenches cut in the soil. In wet weather the butchers' and bakers' carfca cut these up into sad puddles.' In dry weather they stink. So that,. wet or dry, ■ they are not models of either beauty or purity. They have been so often cleaned out that they have gradually widened'to very considerable dimensions; and if any unfortunate wight were to dine on whisky, and find in consequence his head heavier than Ms heels, he would get " quite a hard knock" were he to flop into one of these westward ditches. If they happened to be a bit full, there would surely be something for the Coroner to sit on in the morning.

Is it not yet time for the Oddfellows to enlarge their Hall ? Or have they elected to make a coat of varnish, a splash of whitewash, and a corrugaied iron fence do for the present in the way of improvement? I suppose it is a question of £.s.d. with the Lodge, but while the Oddfellows' Hall is the only building in the town in which a theatrical representation can take place, it stands to reason that unless it can supply accommodation for a payable audience a company of any standing must miss us and go on to the larger towns. At present £40 is about the outside of the hall's capacity at 3/- 2/- and 1/- per head of audience, and that is hardly good enough for a big company. If .the long-promised front, with a dress circle to hold £30 at 3/- por head, were to go up, there would be a wonderful difference in the number of companies that would visit us, and Ashburton always turns out to a really good thing.' "" ,

We don't seem to have many gentlemen in the Borough, now with ambition in • them. The time was when an election for the Borough Council was a subject to fight over for a month or two before the poll came off; and the difficulty was nob in persuading candidates to stand, but in keeping the list of candidates within manageable limits. That time apparently has gone into the irrevocable past, and instead we have a time whrn i A i« d-ffi~tlf to pot a* (vnviT-'Hte at all. Win'i v.v ■:«> i!--\ Ii!-ii p.-- v .lid- i.o; because it I- iii. li'.iK-i 1 ci iiiYii.o'l ('ii isimbythe burgesses, but because he is willing to do the burgesses a favor by accepting a seat at the Council table. The last election was af walk over for two comparative strangers,! and' in a few days we shall be asked to fill' the place of another young Councillor who has funked it, and finds his own business affairs too pressing to spare an hour or two per week to municipal business. Surely the inana of St.-Hill,has not wholly lost its influence 1 Or have the meetings of the Council become so "humdrum and twaddly, so painfully pacific and affectionate, that the ghost of a fight cannot, be scared up ? Perhaps the impossibility of a row, or even the weeniest bit of "you're another"-ing, has the effect of keeping lively go-ahead men off the Corporation's bench. At present Cr Hugo Friedlander is a sort of Prime Ministor m the local parliament; Cr Williamson is his Chancellor; Cr Keir is a kind of leader of the Opposition, with the two young Crs for a following. But the bnhr question of policy on hand that I can see, is whether the Council's talkectalkee should | begin at 7.30 or 8 p,m.

Affairs of five years ago are matters of history in Ashburton. About five or six years ago an agitation was started with the object of getting the two divisions of I Baring Square vested in the Borough! Council simply as endowment reserves, f One or two old gentlemen bitterly opposed the movement, and gave their reasons for doing so. I cannot remember just now what those reassnswere—they could not have been very telling, or I should not have let them slip my memory *-ibut no. doubt they would probably be conveyed in such phrases as " thq people's patrimony, 1" the " lungs of the town," the " breathing places " for the unborn thousands who shall people the Hub in the great future, when the place has become al great mauafacturing centre, if not the j capital of the colony. Anyhow, the agita.-! tion. fell through, and the squares remain as i |hey are. But would it not be a great improvement to the tow© if the now useless) square in East Street were a Borough £ re.serve, leased, and built upon? As the; square remains at present it is of no use whatever. Well, a child or two may run about in it occasionally, and a " rooster " perch on the fence after hammering down ' |he'barbs in the, wire guard, immediately "contagious" to his seat; but its usefulness ends there. Would a line of noble front shops nqt be by far a, hotter thing to see, so that the business part ef the town might be completely connected, instead of showing a, ¥reat staring blank,, qf use. fcq no one.? he "breathing space " idea has now had* the bottom knocked out of it by the improve- i ment qf the Domain, and one wquld think that 70 odd acres within the Town Belt, i wholly devoted to outdoor recreation pur~ pojesi we,re suraly "■ breathing space" enough, '"- - '"• " '.

Ifaw that the new electorates have beep published, and we, begin to iinderstand where we are, we naturally begin, also to peckon up how the next election will affect us. There are hundreds of Mr W, Q. Walker's present constituents who no doubt fancy that he will be returned unopposed for the larger district, or at least that his return is & matter <rf fr^ and goes without saying. It is all very well for them to believe this, but faith without works is dead, and they had better begin at once to; look after h.is interests, fqr already one name at least is mentioned as a probable contestant of the seat, one too who cannot fail to have a fairly large following. In any case lam sure'the seat will be con? tested, and as \h% whole qf the country on the othei' sine qf the Methven line, and, outside a line from about Mitcham to Dromore and thence down to the sea will be in the Ellesm.ere district, c Wakanui will be included in the new Ashburton electorate and all the country southward to the Orari river, it will b.e seen that quite new faces'will have tq be seen by the member for Ashburton and new hearts won by him. I hope he will win them, for he is a good-man, and true, bijt I fear he wilVhave no \yslk pvep. will MEjhixton, shqiudhe stan d fqr the"district just soiith'war^ of us, for "Mr" Rhodes is almost bound to t m the field against him. So that there will be a great sharpening of electioneering cutlasses, feo long.

HoLLOWAYg! Pills.—Nervousness and Want of Energy.-r-Wlien vfirst the nerves feel unstrung, and listlessness supplants ■ '„;■ _y.i ":■ '"/]■: ■I * ■ ,:■ '-.],, - i-./<•-.:,': ■■.- ■ - lir. 1.. ll<-,i--'*.,i .. | si!i, ;.i |,r, vi-'ii <i: ■ >ii|(.i- ■ I;I:;.;...: ii.; : i <i.-. iv. "I-! ( ■■_. i \ j.'.'i; i■■ I* i! I■; o> |[ regfc all irregularities and weaknesses. They act so kuidly and yet so energetically on the functions of digestion and assimilation that the whole body is revived, the blood is rendered richer and piiror, the lmiKcje.s bticc.mq firmer and stroilgyr, find tTio nervous and absorbent I systems are invigorated. Those Pills are suitable for all classes and (ill ages. They have a most marvellous oflecL on persons who fire out. of condition j they snou rectify "whatever is in fault,' restore I trength to the body and confidence to c mind, -' i

3£d to 4d ; light and discolored, 3d to 3Jd. Dairy Produce—Butterj "OJd to 7d; chelae, large sizes, 3d to 3£d; small loaf shape, 4d. The above prizes arc those paid to tanners for delivery f.o.b. at Lyttelton, sacks extra*

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https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/AG18900405.2.13

Bibliographic details

ON THE ASPHALT., Ashburton Guardian, Volume XII, Issue 2393, 5 April 1890

Word Count
1,546

ON THE ASPHALT. Ashburton Guardian, Volume XII, Issue 2393, 5 April 1890

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