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i The annual meeting of the Ashburiton District of the MancLbbccr Unity of the Independent Order of Oddfellows, held, in the Theatre Royal on Thursday afternoon and evening, was one of the most successful meetings ever held in connection with the district. Delegates representative of the Ashburton, Tinwald, Waterton, Staveley, Rakaia and Mayfield Lodges were present, while the Hinds and Methven Lodges were excused on account of the great pressure of work in the country districts.

Tho financial statement placed before the meeting disclosed the fact that all the District Benefit Funds were in a highly creditable condition, that substantial grants had. been made from the Distress Fund to distressed brethren, and that in every instance the lodge finances were shown to have made a marked increase during 1913. This was emphasised by the following figures:—Value of funds on January 1, 1913, £12,304 17s 8d; value of funds on December 31, 1913, ■ £12,893 13s 9d.; sick and death benefits paid to members during the year, £535 15s; medical benefits paid' to members during the year, £419. 12s ,6d. The highly satisfactory financial position was also demonstrated by the fact that several of tho lodges had appropriated portions of their surpluses for the purpose of relieving their members of 65 and over from the payment of their Sick a.nd Funeral Fund contributions, while others were in a position to do so. The numerical, increase was con-j sidered very satisfactory. ' The business sheet was of a lengthy land important character. The rules were amended to provide: : (1) For a more efficient standard of 'bookkeeping and auditing than is gen--1 eral in Friendly Societies; (2) for the | creation of a Hospital Benefit, under which, for the payment of a very small sum annually, members are to be conditionally supplied with hospital accommodation for themselves, their wives, and young children. ,The agenda paper for the meeting of tlife Manchester Unity to be held in j Wanganui in May was considered at some length, and general approval was i I given to several matters contained! therein. !

Bro. F. Pritchard and F. W. Wat; were appointed" as the District's delegates to the Conference. The election of the various officers resulted as follows:—Prov. Grand Master, Bro. E. T. Williams; Prov. Deputy G.M., Bro. Jas. Gourdie; District Trustee, . P.P.G.M. Bro. F. Pritchard; District Treasurer, P.P. G.M. Bro. Chas. Reid; Examining and Relieving Officer, P.P.G.M. Bro. T. Norgari; District Auditors, Bros. C. Campbell and A. C' Hardy. Considerable attention was devoted to' the , recent Parliamentary Committee's report upon Government subvention to Friendly Societies, under which the State proposes to subsidise the benefits granted by the societies in cases of protracted sickness and in old age and mortality benefits. The question was finally referred to a committee for further consideration. ; \ v A resolution expressive of the meeting's appreciation of the many services rendered the Order ,by P.G. Bro. A. I. Bennisqii, .both as a District Officer and as a delegate^ .was on the minutes, as was also the meet-: ing's decision' to present P.P.G.M. Bro. R. H. Davis with a, Past Provincial Grand Master's je^vel to mark the completion of his term. The: meeting was closed with tho usual votes of thanks.

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Bibliographic details

ODDFELLOWS: MANCHESTER UNITY., Ashburton Guardian, Volume XXXIII, Issue 8806, 28 February 1914

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ODDFELLOWS: MANCHESTER UNITY. Ashburton Guardian, Volume XXXIII, Issue 8806, 28 February 1914