i; A LOCAL INDUSTRY. ! Animated apparently by a sense of i joy in possession, about forty snarel noiders in. the fcjouth Canterbury iiricki works Company, Ltd., foregathered at Makikihi on Thursday to inspect the ' brickworks which, they . recently ac- } quired tnero from the estate of the j late Mr ~vVm. Quins.. Vast improye- ! ments have been made in the buildings and plant since the company bought, and shareholders notefl these with feelings of satisfaction. After Having been quiescent for the past six or seven years the works are now in ( full swing, turning out, metaphorically • speaking, gold bricks, or to be literally accurate they are converting clay into bricks of such quality as to command £4 10s. per thousand for as many as can be made. The company were so satisfied with their venture in buying Quinn's brickworks, that they havo since acquired Mr H. "B. Kirk's brick-
works in Timaru. Their out-put is very large, orders being received from as far afield as Auckland. So far, however, 'they have not been able to manufacture in sufficient quantity to enable them to fill orders further away .than. North Canterbury. A good many of the shareholders in the company are Timaru people, and they journeyed down to the works on Thursday, by motor car. in delightful weather when everything looked flourishing, ami it was easy to be an optimist. Among those present wero Mr ,T. P. Newman (chairman of directors), Messrs A. Washer, J. Hutchison, H. A. Innes-Jones (directors), and Mr A. C Martin (secretary). Tho muchexperienced manager (Mr "W. C Shaw) who, by the way, made tho bricks for the C.F.C.A.'s first store and offices in Timaru, piloted the visitors round, and ho did hot find it difficult to show them that they had a good asset. There are lots of things to impress one on looking around. The first is tho great spread of buildings, which covor no less than an aero and a half of ground. Another is the huge chimney stack to which lead flues from the fires in the kiln. The stack rises to a height of 130 feet, and contains sufficient bricks to build tan. 5-roomod brick houses. Other outstanding features aro seen in the quality of tho raw material from which, the ; bricks are made (there is said to be. none better in the Dominion), the enormous accommodation for raw as well as for baking bricks, and' the efficiency which. is everywhere aijparent.
The company own 13J acres of land altogether—4£ acres on one side of the road, with, a long frontage to the. railway line, and the balance on the.opposite aide of the road, where there rire clay deposits sufficient to last' for a generation. The manage* first conducted the visitors to the working face of flie clay cliff, which is at present being worked, where they saw the trucks • loaded by gravitation, aite; which they ran down to the works b> their own weight, a man on the real truck in charge. While one rake of trucks was being unloaded at the mill another .was being drawn by a horse up to the clay face, and so the men at both ends are kept busy. Arrived ■ back at the works, the visitors saw the ' whole process of brick-making from the entrance'of-the clay into a large hopper on the top floor, saw it pasa through nil automatic feeder and a pair ol rollers which take the atones out, ami «iay it fall still further down into th« inoulding and bnck-making machine from which the made bricks emerge in endless succession, all neatly fashioned and smelling strongly of oil and kerosene which are used as lubricants and put a polish on the very tightly pressed yellow blocks. Then they saw'the iiowly-made bricks wheeled into the drying sheds j and were not surprised when the manager told them that. there are at oresent 300,000 bricks drying *SS£ Jnis is the summer shed for drying and there is another adjoining it with a capacity for 24,000 bricks, this one I-Hsuig used in-winter when artificial nielli re< * u,re . d - . F rom the endless paialJel rows of drying bricks tlie visitors were taken to tho 16-chamber burning kiln, and were shown the fires in the upper par*, and the finished article below, it being explained that there is, a constant ingoing of bricks m. the raw, and an equally constant out-goinc- of the finished article. 411 .agreed that the ready-for-use brick is of rare quality, indicating that the .plant is pood, and that it is manned !?y niQu.who know their work. Incidentally, the visitors saw .as thev went through .the works much of the'timber arid iron that/formed part, of the .last Uinstchurch Exhibition- 'buildinrr The masts of the ill-fated. Elginshire were also seen to be doing good servico 8000 to 9000 burnt bocks are b&in" turned out per day, but when the works.reach, their maximum output this « ■k? 11 „°e increased to between 12,000 and 13,000 per day. The company have a private, railway siding, and orders for bricks are being received in excess of the output. Yesterdav a big consignment was railed to Kaiark>i, and another order was received for a million bricks for Nor* Oanterburv. Haying inspected the working parte the visitors (including some ladies) were conducted to the staff's living ai>ar + - ments These are in tlie shape of a large brick hall, with a dining in tho centre of the main room and beds ranged around the walls, while an annexe at the roar serves aa a kitchen Here every thing was seen spick and span, and the visitors were served with a dainty afternoon tea. Mr Newman, in felicitous terms, welcomed the snarerj rs to Bnclr a gathering, spoke confidently of their prospects, and complimented tho manager and his staff on the good work they were doing. He J mentioned incidentally that apart fromthe prospect of personal gain tlie shareholders had tihte satisfaction, of knowing that by their enterprise they wero doing a service to the whole district, ihty u-ere extremely fortunate in having, secured the sendees, of so cautious and capable'a 'manager ag Mr Shaw. (Hear, hear.) Mr Shaw acknowledged the compliments paid him, and said he hoped to show justification for these in tlie balance sheet at tlie end of the year. In recognition <:F the good work of the staff, and in accordance with the spirit of the times, Mr Newman, on behalf of the directors, presented the men with a. fine cricket set for use on the grounds during the long summer cvfenings. The playing apparatus was gratefulH received; and it was whispered that the gift of a billiard table is likely to synchronise with, tho first dividend.