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OUR ENGLISH LETTER.

(FEOM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT.)

London, June 3, 1587.

We are now in the beginning of summer, bnt one would think it was the beginning of winter. Rain, fog, or cold winds made our spring, and there is every prospect of it continuing during the Jubilee month. Mr Chamberlain presided over the first annual meeting of the National Radical Union, held in Jlirniinglinni, and read a letter from Lord Hartington pointing out the dangers which menace the system of Parliamentary government in consequence o( f the determination of the majority ef Liberals to force on a measure of Home Rule which has been condemned, and to secure the alfance of a parly who are really irreconcilable. In his opening address Mr Chamberlain said old party names had lost their meaning, and others would have to be found. If they were to lie taunted with having joined the Tories, their allies would at least be, gentlemen, and not the subsidised agents of a foreign conspiracy. Resolutions were adopted protesting against Mr Gladstone's Homo liule scheme. Lord Demnan has introduced a bill to the House of Lords for limiting the duration of speeches in Parliament. He proposes that Privy Councillors in either House of Parliament shall not speak above one hour, and other members of either House not being Privy Councillors above a quarter of an hour. The clerk of each Honse shall record in writing the commencement of each speech, and at the end of one hour for Privy Councillors and of a quarter of an hour for all others the clerk shall sound such a bell as is used at diocesan conferences. In case, after the sounding of such bell, no other peer or member of Parliament shall rise to speak, the peer or member of Parliament who may_ have paused in his speech may resume his speech for either an hour or a quarter of an hour, according to the above regalations. The select committee appointed by the Honße of Commons at the instance of Mr Howell and Mr Bradlaugh, to enquire into the expenditure of the City Corporation, lias pust presented its report. The investigation was begun in March. Lord Hartington was in the chair, and Mr Bradlaugh was admitted to the privilege of examining certain of the supposed delinquents. The City Corporation has been stretched on the rack, and from time

to time the public has had glimpses into the torture chamber. The Corporation was especially accused nf manufacturing "bogus" meetings, ami of expending vast sums to oppose .Sir William Ilarconrt's Government of London Hill. It was also charged with promoting a Katepayers' Protection Association, and of endowing it with a liberal income. In its defence the City gives it to be understood that its funds are derived from two sources — from tlie city estates and from trust funds. The estate moneys, amounting ts £350,000 a year, it. has' a right, so it says, to spend as it likes. It is into this store that it has dipped in order to create a public opinion that would defeat any attempt to reform London municipal government. One single revelation sheds a bright light on city diplomacy. The "Johnson account," including " hire of audiences, and manipulation of the Ratepayers' Protection Association," shows an expenditure of £2920, of which over £400 found its way iuto the pocket of Mr Johnson. It is this account which really led to the whole inquiry. The balance-sheet, copied in shorthand as a curiosity, found its way into the hands of Mr Firth, the champion of London reform. Items, such as £50 for a pamphlet to Mr Lee, " an author," and £42 to Mr Hugh O'Donnell, M.P., hardly count beside the many thousands secretly paid to other agents. " The committee has taken a somewhat lenient view. It does not look to the Corporation of London for " plain living and high thinking." It is acquitted of fraudulent intentions, but censured for handing over to its agents cash " for improper and indefensible purposes." The City is thick-skinned and indifferent to besmirched reputation. It would laugh more, and the glass would pass round more merrily, if the matter were finally ended. But Mr Howell is not satisfied, neither is Mr Bradlaugh. The question has again cropped up in the House of Commons, and Mr Smith has promised to do what he can in the way of allowing a motion and a discussion after Whitsuntide. The intention of the organising committee of the Imperial Institute to make the governing body fully representative of the industrial and commercial interests of all parts of the realm is one that is sure to meet with favor. The complete provisions of the scheme are not, it is announced, yet matured ; but the bodies which it is proposed to represent constitute a group of the most influential and representative kind. It is intended to make the general council consist of 100 members, with powers to increase not exceeding 50. Her Majesty is to have the prerogative of nominating 10 members. Forty-live representatives are to be chosen for the United Kingdom, 30 for the the colonies, and 15 for India. The Royal Society of Edinburgh and the Royal Irish Academy nominate a member each, and the leading science and art societies of the Kingdom have similar powers. A new departure is about to be taken by the directors of the Crystal Palace, with a view to still further popularise that attractive place of resort. With the beginning of next month visitors are to be admitted on Sundays on the presentation of their cards— the only condition being that those admitted shall dine in the building. If the Palace comes to be opened in this way, there is no doubt it would be very much resorted to. Formerly there was a number of suburban tea gardens which young Londoners of both sexes used to visit on Sunday afternoons and evenings ; but these have been gradually abolished, and persons who do not go to church are now driven to the public-houses, limited to a walk in the parks, or forced to remain at home. By making no charge for admission, the directors are permitted to throw opan the building in the same way Sir Coutts Lindsay does the Grosvenor Gallery. The compulsion to keep closed on the day when people have most leisure has long been a source of complaint with the palace managers, and it is not a little remarkable that the scheme to be tried next month has not before been attempted. The costnme ball at the Institute of Painters iv Watercolors was one of Hie most remarkable spectacles that we have had for a long time. Tlie dresses of the actors in tlie tableaux were veritable works of ait, and neither money nor talent had been spared in their preparation, so that the effect of gorgeous coloring heightened the telling situations of the tableaux and gave universal satisfaction. The formation of the Kouvier Cabinet will, it is still hoped, at least provide France with a stop-gap Government. It is, however, too early to speak of the Ministerial crisis as settled, even temporarily. General Boulanger has throughout proved the great obstacle to the work of forming a Government. Popular with the army and with the extreme section of his countrymen, it is difficult to determine whether a pacific policy stands in greater or lesser danger by reason of the General's exclusion or his appointment to the War Department. At lirst blush it would appear that General Boulanger's fall must necessarily have a tranquilising effect, but there is room for divided opinion upon the point. No sooner had the probability of the General being passed over got wind than his admirers in the provinces began sending up petitions in his behalf. Moderate men perceive that the construction of a Ministry involves more even than the question of tolerating a Boulanger dictatorship, alarms at the same time both the Right and the Moderate Left is that in France the popularity of the General rests on the Revolutionary parties, from Radicalism to Socialism, and that this popularity imparted to an extreme policy a prestige 'which strengthened it and bade fair to secure its triumph. It was said that General Bonlanger must not he dismissed, that to exclude him would be a crime against the country. But, at the same time, the General wished to enter no Cabinet but one in which the Radical policy had the upper hand. In fact, it was not only the General himself whom it was necessary to look after, but the policy of which he had become the banner, and which he was obliged to follow and develop. Turkey has given to Crete what England refuses to Ireland — that is, Home Rule. The people have their own Parliament, over whose decisions the Sultan retains only the right of veto. They expend the direct taxes, appoint and control their own police, and have a half of the Custom-house receipts for internal expenses. But the Christians of the country cannot agree with the Mnssulniaiis of the towns ; and, as the former are in the majority, they, like other people, seek to have it all their own way. There is no mistaking that absolute independence is what is wanted; and there are signs of a repetition of the insurrection of 18S6. In the past, turbulence in Crete has been a sure sign of a melee in the south-east. A few days since the world was apprised of the fact that during the Russo-Tnrkish campaign there existed between Russia and Austria a secret treaty, by which it was agreed that Austria should, when the time for the adjustment of the territory arrived, occupy Bosnia and Herzegovina, upon tlie condition that she did not interfere with Russia's progress towards Constantinople. Now we have another revelation. It appears from confidential evidence just published by General Le Flo, and which passed through his hands whilst he was French Ambassador at St. Petersburg, that in 187 a France obtained, direct from the Czar himself, assurances hich General Le Flu deolared at the time amounted to "the moral co-opera-tion, the energetic intervention, of Russia" in ease of conflict between France and Germany, and which certainly placed the l'rench people under deep obligations to the Muscovite Power. This latest revelation of international relations as they existed twelve years ago has not, of course, the importance which would attach to it if it dealt with secret agreements and understandings of the present time. It is nevertheless significant, that at a moment when the attitude of Germany towards France is one of keen suspicion, and when the military policy of the French nation is trembling in the balance, Russia's former readiness to stand liy France should be loudly proclaimed "in a manner which cannot fail to attract general attention. How far France and Russia are agreed upon matters affecting their respective foreign policies cannot be said, but it is abundantly clear that Germany, in all her calculations, must allow for probable "energetic intervention" on the part of Russia in case of a rupture between Paris and Berlin. This sudden revival of reminiscences of the "French scare" of 1875 shows that Fiance is relying upon Russian cooperation now as she relied upon it in 1875. Another feature of General Le Flo's exposition of the former understanding betwoen the French Republic and the Czar is that coming at a critical moment like the present, it is calculated to stir up old animosities, and to render the existing state of things in Europe still more precarious. Germany goes on expelling French subjects from Alsace-Lorraine, and punishing others for singing the " Marseillaise " or for crying "Vive la France" ; and in the meanwhile France is returning the compliment. Two toy factories near Luneville kept by a German with Germans in his employ' have been closed, and the whole batch sent out of tlie country. Other reprisals of a similar character are expected to follow. The Teutons, more over, who still insist upon visiting Paris or other French towns are reduced to passing themselves off as English by making use of such knowledge as they may possess of our language. The prospects are not improving for the Paris Exhibition of 1889. 'i he Czar peremptorily forbade all patronage of the undertaking; our Chambers of Commerce, but not our Government, are to countenance it ; and from Germany there is to be no official uippoit of any kind. Now it is announced that the Austro-

Hungarian Government also will take no part. The reason is in every case the same — tho Governments cannot l>e persuaded (o patronise (lie celebration of the Revolution, lint Paris can afford to dispense with their help. Much regret would be felt on various grounds if public confidence in the stability of our savings' banks were .shaken, bub it cannot be doubted that a feeling of distrust lias lately been aroused because of the failure of .some of them, and the very extensive embezzlements from others. Things cannot be altogether right when it is possible for a manager to embezzle more than eight out of the nine thousand pounds invested, as was the case in one instance ; and the fact that a very large bank of this kind, which failed a short time ago, attracted its customers by the words "Government security," while not possessing that valuable article, also points to a wrong that wants a remedy. The matter has been pressed upon the attention of the Ministry by a "member interested in t!<e condition of the working classes ; and a conference on the subject has been held, in which such distinguished financial authorities as the First Lord of the Treasury, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Sir Rivers Wilson (as representing the National Debt Office), the Registrar of the Friendly Societies, and the Aeconntant-General of the Post Oflice took part. It is understood that, as a result of the conference, the Government contemplate proposing legislation dealing with the subject ; but it is probable that an investigation will be held into the conditions under which the trustee savings banks cany on their operations before anything is'atlempted with regard to those institutions. The majority of them will certainly be found sound and stable ; but it is to protect the public from the faulty minority that legislation is admitted on all hands to be needed. The new four-shilling piece has not yet been issued, and it seems that after all we are likely to have crown pieces to celebrate the Jubilee. The double florin has really nothing to do with it. The coin is wanted for colonial purposes and in countries where the dollar is the unit of value. To judge from all the light sixpences in circulation it might seem as if we were very badly off for silver coins, but there are i' 340,000 worth of shillings and sixpences actually coined and lying in reserve at the Mint. It does not look as if the Chancellor of the Exchequer ought to have any difficulty in supplying us with new silver. It is strange how completely French pennies have disappeared.' These foreign bronzes got to be a nuisance in the pocket. One was glad to get lid of them, and I hear the automatic suppliers of cigarettes a.nd sweets at the railway stations trebled their receipts by taking French pennies as well as English. An extraordinary instance of feminine credulity occupied the attention of the Portsmouth magistrates last week, when a good-looking young gipsy named Eliza Stanley was charged with pretending to tell fortunes. There were five charges, to all of which she pleaded guilty. The prisoner had vi.siled various servants and represented that she could rule their planets. In order to successfully do this, she told them she must be entrusted with gold, and she asked for half a sovereign. In each case, on this being riven, she left, returning a day or two afterwards, and saying that what she had got was not sufficiently heavy to draw the planet. To one young woman she said, " I have great difficulties to turn for you. You don't want to be a servant all your life, do you ? I can get you out of it." Thereupon the young woman gave her all the money and jewellery she had, and the prisoner, who left promising to return the goods to her, was not seen again. The gipsy was sentenced to three months' imprisonment A petition in bankruptcy presented against Lord Colin Campbell came on for hearing last week, the Duke of Mailborough being the petitioning creditor. He claims £971 in respect of his taxed costs as a co-respondent in the recent divorce proceedings. It came out during the hearing that the recent divorce suit cost over £20,000. The examination of the bankrupt will take place during the month. At an electoral meeting held at St. Helier's, Jersey, last night, the Mayor in advocating the adoption of the ballot, stated that in the recent election shoes had been bought from voters at£3(iapair, and eggs at £5 each. One man received £'20 from each of the opposing candidates, and on the morning of the election sent a medical certificate to both to excuse his absence from the poll. A cocklight, on an unusually largo scale, has this week been prevented in I 1 nniess. The police made two raids in one day. The first was at Ruslan, near Winderiuere, where upwards of a hundred men assembled at daybreak, before whom between twenty and thirty mains were to be fought. Upon the police appearing an extraordinary scene took place. One man jumped into the river, and another threw liis bird iv after him. A second ring was broken up at Newton, in Cartnel, and but for the interference of the police it would have been one of the largest cockfights ever seen in the district. • The greatest piece ot rock-blasting ever undertaken was successfully accomplished lit the Llanheri-s Quarries, and a large [fathering of spectators upon the heights :>f Snowdon, facing the quarries, witnessed the shattering of the masses of rock on the other side of the lake. Four linn•lreil thousand tons ot worthless rock iad to be removed, .and for this purpose a tunnel US feet long was driven into the base of the rock. This branched Diit into six deep chambers, each terminating in a shaft. Explosive gelatine ivas built into these shafts, and a fuse uranged so that all could be exploded at the same instant. Thirty-six hundredweight of gelatine, equal to two tons of jnnpowder, were used. Notice was ssued in the district warning persons hat doors and windows should be left jpen, ami that all residents of houses ivitliin a specified area should leave their mines during the time the explosion was jxpected. Shops were closed, and the lighways barred by police. The result, loweve'r, proved that these precautions ivere not necessary. The explosion was, .0 the fullest degree, successful, but no jreat dispersion of stones and debris was made. About 20 minutes after the fuse was lichted the outburst of stones and earth showed that the gelatine had exploded. The sound of the blast was not much greater than the ordinary every -day shot which qnarrymen fire. All the force of the gelatine took effect in the interior of the rock, which was shattered and brought do« n in a mass into the quarry workings and lake below. One of the coroners of Suffolk held the adjourned inquest on a school girl who was found drowned in a pond. This was the fourth time the jury had met in this case, they having previously declined to proceed with the inquiry unless the coroner admitted the reporters* The dispute was ultimately referred to the Lord Chancellor, who sustained the coroner's objection to the reporters, as it was left with his discretion as to allowing publicity. The reporter!* were again asked to retire, but refused, and several jurors said they would leave. The coroner then prepared a warrant for the committal of the reporters, and they were withdrawing under protest, when Mr Sleigh, who represented the London News Agencies, advised tho jury not to be intimated by the ooroner. The coroner considered this contempt of court, and told Mr Sleigh that unless he withdrew the remark he would commit him. Air Sleigh refusing, he was given into custody and taken off to the gaol, being heartily cheered. The coroner then threatened to commit to prison all the jury if they did not go on with the inquiry. The jury eventually returned a verdict of "found' drowned." An application was made to a judge in chambers for the release of Mr Sleigh, and his release was ordered after reading several affidavits. The Derby has fallen this year to Merry Hampton, son of Hampton and Doll Tearsheet, who never ran in public before, lie, however, signalised his introduction to a racecourse by winning the Derby with great ease. The judge gave three lengths, but it looked to me more like seven. The winner's success was, 1 think, far from being generally anticipated, especially as The Uaron, a colt which had never known defeat, had been made for what seemed good reason first favorite. That Merry Hampton had never run as a two-year-old will probably be made the occasion for the renewal of arguments on the inp.dvisability of racing hor.ses at Unit age, hut no doubt everything depends on the constitution of a colt. The Hard, for instance, ran a good second for the Derby last year, after having run and won no fewer than sixteen races as a two-year-old. I think Merry Hampton beat a poor field of horses, and it is rather curious to observe how thoroughbred stock appears to vary from year to year. Last year the three-year-olds were undoubtedly a brilliant lot — this reason they seem to be comparatively poor.

notice to raise the level of his section sufficiently to drain the storm water into the .street, water-tables ; also, hoping that the Council would reconsider' their decision re the dismissal of Mr Hallett, as it was absolutely necessary that a proper person should have the care of the sewers.— Resolved, " That the waste water fium Mr Knight's artesian be allowcil U i'iyui! into the sewer, but that it lie ilone under t lie supervision of the C'o'inul'a dig' .L'er. I l ' roia l!u! lioroii-. 1 ! solicitor, re the private slieets within the borough.- — Held over until (he next meeting of the Council. l''rom the secretary to the Treasury, acknowledging the receipt of balancesheet, and requesting that it be furnished in triplicate, and also staling that printed copies would he preferred.— Resolved, " That the secretary to the Treasury he informed that the provisions ot sections 172 and 1730 f the Municipal Corporations Act, 18S0, have been complied with." From the Hastings School Committee, requesting that pipes he laid through the school "rounds from the sewer to carry on" the waste water from the artesian wells ; also, that the necessary connections be made with the closets and urinals. — Resolved, " That the work be carried out under the following conditions, viz., ' That the school committee guarantee payment of the cost, and that when the special loan is floated the Council will refund them the money less the cost of connecting the closets and urinals with the branch drain from the sewer.'" From the Underwriter's Association, Napier, informing the Council that they could not accede to the request to subsidise subscriptions in aid of the Hastings Fire Brigade. — Received. From the Property Tax Commissioner, informing the Council that a voucher for the payment of £03 Ins, balance of subsidy due to the Council, had been forwarded to the Treasury.— Received. From the inspector of nuisances, reporting the existence of several nuisances within the borough. — Resolved, "That the owners of the premises referred to be given notice to abate the nuisances complained of, and that the inspector be requested to furnish a further leport on the best means of getting rid of the stagnant water lying on Mrs Lagor's premises. From Messrs George and Henry's attorneys forwarding a voucher for payment of work done in connection with the printing of the bye-laws.— Consideration deferred till next meeting. MISCELLANEOUS. The following lenders for the skeleton standard survey of the town of Hastings were laid before the Council :— lt. P. Dristed, £110 ; H. Ellisou, £76 ; E. 0. 1). Smith, £74 ; G. D Newton, £168 ; W. Hallett, £108 17s Gd ; B, Lessong, £105 ; C. D. Kennedy, £105. It was resolved that the tenders bo referred to Mr Rochfort for his approval. A select committee was appointed to confer with Mr Kochfort upon the subject of the skeleton survey, and to bring up a report at the next meeting. The following tenders for the supply of 300 cubic yards of shingle were received : —George Hayes, Is 7 id per cubic yard ; C. Farmery, Is 9d per "cubic yard." The lowest tender was accepted. The following tenders for cartage were received : — G. Hayes, one-horse team 12s 6d per day, two- horse team 15s; J. Stewart, one-horse team 13s per day, twohorse team lGs ; T. Home, one-horse team 9s lOd per day. two-horse team 14s ; R. Mitchell, one-horse team 12s per day, two- horse team 10s ; C. Farmery, onehorse team 13s per day, two-horse team 16s. Resolved, " That the lowest tender for one-horse and two-horse teams be accepted." Resolved, " That the resolution passed at the last meeting of the Council re the dismissal of Mr Hallett be rescinded and that Mr Hallett's duties for the future include the inspection of nuisances and the collection of the dog tax without any additional salary." Resolved "That the portion of the Heretaunga-road, between Mr J. N. Williams's woolshed gate and the old river lied near Mr Birch's be ploughed down and reformed and metalled." Constable Pickering was allowed 10s which he had to pay for the burial of a dead horse which died in the pound. A committee, consisting of his Worship the Mayor and Crs. Long and Foreman, was appointed to take charge ot the roads. A number of accounts were passed for payment and the Council adjourned.

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Bibliographic details

OUR ENGLISH LETTER., Hawke's Bay Herald, Volume XXII, Issue 7803, 23 July 1887

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4,366

OUR ENGLISH LETTER. Hawke's Bay Herald, Volume XXII, Issue 7803, 23 July 1887

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