The Lyttelon Times. January 3, 1852.
The Quarterly General Meeting- of the Society of Land-Purchasers was held at Christchurch on Thursday last. It derived especial interest from the fact that the tenure ofoflice of the Council expired with the past quarter, and that a new council was therefore to he elected. Mr. Beitian look the Chair, and after making a few preliminary remarks, read the report of the council for the last three mouths. We regret that our space this week prevents our printing this document in full. A brief recapitulation of its leading points, may, howeveV, be sufficient. \ The Council, alluding to the labours of "the Committee to whom they, had delegated the onerous task of'inquiringiuto,and reporting upon ' the best means for opening up a communication between the port, and the plains, slated that since the completion of those labours, no tim<»\ had been lost by them in transmitting a coj1. F, of the Committee's Report to his Excellency ih■ '&< Governor-in-Chief, at the same time expressing^ their hope that the co-operation of the Govern- ' mem might be obtained to a work of such great public importance and utility. They had great pleasure in being able to lay before 'the Society the reply of His Excellency, which seemed to justify ihe anticipations they had formed. The Council then referred in their report to the New Canterbury Act, stating that while they approved generally of its provisions, vhey could not concur in one measure authorized by it, 1 namely, the appointment of a Managing Coiu-
mittee in the settlement, neither responsible to the settlers, nor elected by them, but solely dependent upon, and accountable to the Association in London, being moreover its nominees, and holding, with respect to the management of the land, precisely an analogous position to that which the General Legislative Council of the colony holds with respect to the general government. That in the constitution of such a body, the Council could see no improvement upon the present system, under which an Agent exercises, on behalf of the Association, certain delegated powers. The Report further expressed the gratification o^the Council at the courteous attention which the recommendations of the colonists respecting the then existing pasturage regulations had received from the Managing Committee of the Association at home, those recommendations having been, under the new powers given to the Association by the Act of Parliament recently passed, assented to in every respect, " so far as they do not interfere with the fundamental conditions provided by the Charter and Terms of Purchase, securing the unrestricted selection of land by purchasers," and full powers having been delegated to the Agent in the colony to deal with the pasturage regulations accordingly.
The Council then intimated that they had continued to point out such works as they considered most called for, and that upon their recommendations the following public woiks had been already commenced, or would be undertaken as the necessary funds were forthcoming. 1. The great Northern Road in continuation of the road from the Ferry to Christchurch, over the bridge at the Market Place, as far as Papanui Bush, the Council having also recommended that a Bridle and Cattle Path should he made over the Purarekanui as far as the River Courteuay, by which the whole of the country to the north of the settlement would be opened up. 2. The building of a suitable collegiate establishment in Christchurch. 3. The completion of the Lower Lincoln road, as far as the bridge over the Upper Heathcote. They had also recommended as of considerable importance in reference to future sales of land, that the trigonometrical survey of the plains on the south and west of the Courtenay should be extended to the hills as soon as possible, although they were aware of there being at present no funds for the purpose, but that there was reason to believe the expense would be very moderate, as a large portion of the cost would he borne by occupiers of pasturage runs, by whom the country had already been in a large measure taken up. A statement of the financial accounts of the Society was then given, showing a balance in hand. While expressing their sense of their own anomalous position, with no legal existence and no real powers, the Council nevertheless recommended their fellow colonists, in the lack of representative institutions, to persevere in mantaining their organization as a Society, as the only means of collectively expressing their sentiments on public matters. The Council concluded their Report by congratulating the Society on the progress made by the colony during this first year of its existence, and by recapitulating the results within that period which warranted such congratulation. Mr. E. B. Bishop moved, and Captain Westenra seconded the adoption of the Report. This was unanimously agreed to. Mr. Pollaud, remarking that the land had now become a marketable commodity, and that it was therefore hardly fair to confine the privileges of membership of the Society to original laud -purchasers, moved, ; ■" That the Council be requested to take into consideration the present organization of the Society, with a view to an extension of its franchise; and to report thereon with as little delay as possible." Mr. Davie having seconded this motion, it was carried unanimously. On proceeding to the election of a new President and Council, some discussion took place as to the interpretation of the rules relating thereto, in consequence of no public notification having been made of any particular candidate for the office of President. On the one side it was contended that any one of the candidates for a seat in council might be chosen as president— on the other, that the rules evidently provided for the election of a President first, and of twelve members of Council afterwards. Mr. Bowen movedj and Dr. Barker seconded, " that the meeting do proceed at once to the election of a President." As an amendment Mr, Fixzgeuaij) proposed, supported by the
Rev. O. Mathias, that the meeting should adjourn for three weeks to allow the names of candidates for the office of President to be proposed. The amendment was carried. Mr. Biuttan stated that Captain Simeon had withdrawn his name from the list of candidates for a seat in council, deeming it incompatible with his office of Resident Magistrate. There were, therefore, only twelve gentlemen eligible by due notice for the Council, who were therefore elected as a matter of course. We shall print His Excellency's letter on the subject of the road next week.
Public Meetings of the inhabitants were held on Thursday at Christchurch, and on Friday at Lyttelton, for the purpose of deciding upon the question of an easier communication between the Port Town ol the settlement and the agricultural and pastoral districts, the Report of the Select Committee upon the subject having been for some time before the public. At Christchurch the Rev. 0. Mathias was voted into the chair. The first of the resolutions (which we publish below) was moved by Mr. Gibbs, who referred briefly to the various circumstances which rendered the present means of communication by water _iuemcient, and urg-e^tiTa!Tlie^nblneclTestim()ny of so many experienced surveyors and others, as well as the opinion of Captain Thomas and of the " Acheron's" officers, together with the fact that £6,000 had already been laid out in commencing the Simmer road, would seem without doubt to warrant their deciding- upon that route for the proposed communication. Mr. Burke, in seconding the resolution, expressed himself in favour of the Sumner route, and said that although he occupied a distant part of the settlement and was peculiarly intererested in the opening up of the back country by means of new roads, which the formation of the Sumner road would, from its expensiveness, greatly retard, he nevertheless felt that work to be of the greatest importance, and superior to every other consideration.
Mr. Brixtan, speaking to the resolution, explained, as one of the Committee, their views and feelings in coming to the conclusion and making the recommendation they had, and stated that although it was quite possible that they had formed a wrong conclusion, yet that much patient consideration and inquiry had been bestowed by them upon the subject. While their decision only bound the particular body they represented, it was nevertheless of the utmost importance that the whole body of the inhabitants should be well informed and unanimous in deciding- upon a matter which would affect their own pockets. The Rev. J. Wilson rose to ask a qnestion with reference to the practicability of a much less expensive road over the Raupaki spur. He had heard that an accurate survey, of that route had never been^jna^e,~and that a person who had" suggested"the Raupaki road had offered himself to be at the expence of such a survey, a proof at least of bis sincerity. He believed, moreover, that the opinion of that person carried some little weight, and he was anxious that the route should be well considered before any road was decided upon. Mr. Inwood moved as an amendment to the resolution that the meeting should be adjourned till that day fort- j night, to give time for consideration, expressing^ as his opinion that the road was intended to benefit thirty or forty of the settlers at the expence of the rest, that with respect to the practicability of loading back from port, and so lessening the expence of carriage, no pair of horses could pull a load there and back every day, and that he was inclined to believe that Mr. Torlesse's plan of the two steamers was by far the best and most economical for the communication. Mr. Si'iLLAHD seconded the amendment. Mr. Biuttan rose to object to the postponement of the question. The Committee had not been hasty in their decision, their labours had extended over several months, the line of road over Raupaki spiuvhad..bfiijn^lj^Mvei'jhed and considered, and the testimony brought by every snmiyor was so conclusive that they had rejected that route as of atieut,i.on, thureiseiiig.no second opinionTmt that it was far inferior to the Sunnier road, as it rose to a height of 1,100 feet instead of (MO, and the ascent and descent were each 4i miles instead oi'2i. It would be seen that Mr. Cridland had been requested to estimate its cost, which he did at A3,500 per mile, stating that it would be as expensive as the Sunnier line with only half its advantages. He (Mr. Brittan) must therefore
protest against any further delay in coining to a decision. Mr. Bbay said that there were two other objections to the Raupaki line, the length of time a horse would have the stress on the collar in ascending, and the numerous sharp and dangerous turns in such a road. The amendment was put to the meeting and lost. The original motion was then submitted, and carried nem. con, Mr. Hakt moved, Mr. Inwood seconding, as a necessary evil (laughter), the second resolution. This with the third, moved by Mr. Read, seconded by Mr. JDavie, and the fourth, moved by Mr. C. W. Bishop, seconded by Mr. I. Cookson, was unanimously carried, and the meeting closed with a vote of thanks to the Rev. Chairman. From the Lyttelton Meeting having been held so late in the week as last evening, we defer our report of it until next week. RESOLUTIONS. 1. That, in the opinion of this meeting, the completion of the road from Lyttelton to Christchurch, by Sumner, is of greater importance to the advancement of this settlement, than any other public work which can be undertaken. 2. That at present it is sufficient that a communication should be made practicable with as little delay, and as small an outlay, as possible ; and that the final completion of the work be left until the increasing wealth of the settlement shall render larger funds available for the purpose. 3. That in the opinion of this meeting, if a sum could be obtained upon loan, for the purpose required, the debt might justly be charged upon the general revenues of this settlement. ,; 4. That, Mr. Godley and Captain Sim?on, together with the four gentlemen whose names are appended to the report which has recently emanated from the Society of Land-Purchasers, be requested to form a Committee for the purpose of communicating with his Excellency the Governor-in-Chief, with a view to ascertaining whether such a loan can be effected, and ihat two or more of those gentle-men be requested to wait upon His Excellency as a deputation from this meeting.
A spirited sailing match took place in the harbour on New Year's Day, between some of the small vessels chiefly engaged in the Sumner trade. The match, which was hastily got up by the exertions of a few of the settlers, was for two prizes of 11. and Si. 10s. respectively. The following vessels started :—Cutters Katharine Ann and Fisherman ; schooners Wave, Flirt, Elizabeth, William Horina, General Palmer, and Diana : sailing from opposite the town, round the ships Cornwall and Fatima, retracing their course round a craft moored off the town, again circumnavigating the ships and back to the Jetty. The coming in was full of excitement; three vessels, the Kaiherine Ann, Flirt, and Wave being nearly abreast of each other. The Umpire awarded the first prize to the Katherine Ann, Bell, master, and the second to the Wave, Maxwell Crockett. Measures are being taken to ascertain the opinion of the inhabitants on the subject of discontinuing the use of the present cemetery at Lyttelton, and forming one in a position less likely to affect the health of the inhabitants. At present, with northerly winds, all the effluvium arising therefrom is carried through the town, and must become, if not now, at any rate in a few years, extremely prejudicial. Not only so. but the present burying-grouud is situated on the very spur from which the principal supply of water emanates. We believe a spot round by the Sumner road has been thought of as the best obtainable for a new Cemetery reserve. With respect to the situation we would at present express no opinion, but we certainly think the removal of the Cemetery is urgently called for.
An inquest was held on Tuesday on the body of Alexander Baird, found drowned in this harbour. The evidence of Messrs. Ashmo.e and George Taylor proved that they found the clothes of the deceased on the shore, and his body not far off in the water among the rock*;. The nurse at the hospital proved that deceased had for some time betn an inmate there, and was very weak in body. He had often been to bathe before. On the Monday he had spoken of going to Chiistcburcb to seek for work, a:though very unfit for such a walk, and slu* ii.-ul sat up at night expecting him back. It appeaivd probable that he had slipped off the rocks and been unable to rise. There were only about four feet of water in the place where he was found. The body appeared to have been bruised by contact with the rocks. The Jury lvturned a verdict of" accidental drowning."
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The Lyttelon Times. January 3, 1852., Lyttelton Times, Volume I, Issue 52, 3 January 1852
The Lyttelon Times. January 3, 1852. Lyttelton Times, Volume I, Issue 52, 3 January 1852
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