2 November 1901

Record Weather and a Keen Fight

That Ashton was in the throes of a municipal contest, the most remarkable for years, was palpable yesterday (Friday). Election agents and political workers careered along the streets in vehicles or on foot with a business-like earnestness seldom seen at a municipal election, and sporting red or blue favours, as the case might be. Hansom cabs flitted about here and there with voters wearing a serenely expressive look as if they held the whip hand, and dapper little ponies and traps pranced about in the bright sunlight.

Bill-stickers were busy, and on the walls was a choice assortment of mural literature. One large blue poster contained a query as to whether Liberal rule was worth 2s in the pound on the rates for Board Schools. A large yellow and black poster from the Independent Labour Party called upon the electors to vote straight for the Liberal candidates, Messrs HAMER and HURST, whilst cheek by jowl with each other were two black and green posters, both purporting to come from prominent Catholics in the town, one advising the electors to vote for the Liberal candidates, Messrs M L HALL and Thomas HALLAM, as opposed to the candidates of Messrs John BYRNE and J GRIME, and the other vice versa. The polling stations opened at 8am, and were timed to close at eight o clock in the evening.

Letters from the Revs Colbeck and Sheers

Sir," The Conservatives have issued a handbill entitled "Who drank it? A Champagne Story." My name is mentioned in it. The suggestion is made that on the occasion of the Proclamation of the King in February last, I helped to drink the champagne; and the statement is made that on the return of the volunteers I was one who enjoyed what was being provided. In the plainest English I can use I beg to say that both the suggestion and the statement are untrue. And I also beg to say that the handbill referred to is a shameful misuse of patriotic occasions for party purposes which must inevitably damage the prospects of the party that has forgotten itself so far as to stoop to such dishonourable means.
I am, yours sincerely,
Heath Bank, Ashton-under-Lyne

Sir," I was amazed this afternoon to find my name on a political handbill bearing the heading, "Who drank it?" I am at a loss to know on what ground I am ranked "amongst many other Liberals," as I am not aware that I have ever uttered a word, either in public or in private, that would necessarily commit me to either political party. I greatly appreciated the courtesy of the Mayor in inviting me to the Town Hall on the occasion of the Proclamation of the King, and was very pleased, as a loyal citizen, to be able to accept his invitation. I am a teetotaller, and I drank no champagne or any kind of liquid, and had no cigar. If I had done so, I should have taken it for granted that I was doing so at the Mayor s expense.

I also accepted an invitation to the Town Hall on the occasion of the return of the volunteers, and stayed as long as my engagements would permit, but again I had no refreshments of any kind, though I appreciated the generosity of the Mayor in providing them. But it is a shameful thing that gentlemen cannot accept a Mayor s invitation without danger of being pilloried in a common political handbill. I greatly regret that a bill of this nature should have been published, which, unless it is repudiated, will make it exceedingly difficult for self-respecting men to accept any of these official invitations.
I am, sir, yours very truly,
Geo. England SHEERS

A Farmer Killed

Shortly after midnight on Thursday, a sad street accident, which unfortunately was attended with fatal results, took place at Stalybridge. At the hour named, Mr Robert COLLIER, farmer, of Ridgehill-lanes, was walking in the direction of Heyrod along with Mr Fred ALLSOP, blacksmith, Caroline-street, and when near the Glent, they were startled to hear a horse, attached to a hansom cab, dashing along the road towards them at a terrific pace. Both the men made an effort to get clear, but as they did so, the horse suddenly swerved on to Mr COLLIER, knocking him violently to the ground.

Mr ALLSOP escaped, and he at once hurried to his friend, whom he was shocked to find in an unconscious state. With all haste Mr ALLSOP procured the assistance of Dr HANCOCK, who at once ordered Mr COLLIER s removal to the Ashton District Infirmary. The unfortunate man never regained consciousness, his skull having been fractured and his lower jaw lacerated, besides his face being badly bruised, and death took place at 1.30 on Friday morning.

The hansom was without driver; and the horse galloped madly on through the streets, being eventually pulled up at the West End, Ashton. The horse and cab were the property of Mr George TAYLOR, of Old-street, Ashton. After the removal of Mr COLLIER to the Infirmary, William SHEPHERD was discovered a distance up the road. He was locked up on a charge of drunkenness, but was bailed out the next morning.

We are asked to state that the horse and trap which knocked the girl THOMAS down in Oldham-road, Waterloo, a fortnight ago, was not being driven, as stated in our evening edition, by Mr George Albert BINTLIFFE, but by Mr John William LEES.

THE GAMBLING NUISANCE" At the Aston County Police Court, on Wednesday, seven youths, named Ernest PARKER, Alexander ASHWORTH, Fred ASHWORTH, John HILL, William ANDERTON, and John ROBINSON, were before the Bench, charged with gaming at Waterloo, on October 13. Defendants all pleaded not guilty." A constable stated that at four o clock on the Sunday afternoon in question, he saw the defendants  playing banker. They were dealing cards out and putting money on the back and then turning them over. Witness watched them for about twenty minutes and got to within 30 yards of them. They had touts out." Fred ASHWORTH said he was at the Sunday school at the time, and called the Sunday school teacher to prove the statement." HILL said he was laid on the sofa at the time, and this statement was borne out by his mother." ROBINSON said he was simply feeding his pigeons." Fred ASHWORTH, John HILL, and John ROBINSON were discharged, and SANGSTER (sic " Ed), PARKER, and Alexander ASHWORTH, who had previous convictions against them, were fined 7s 6d. ANDERTON was fined 5s.

This pocket diary and year-book for 1902, containing a collection of useful engineering notes, rules, tables, and data, is to hand. A usual, it is well got up and chock-full of information on a variety of topics useful to engineers and other artisans. In this issue there is incorporated a considerable amount of new matter, there being some concise notes on the care and management of dynamos and motors, and tables of logarithms and anti-logarithms, have been included by special request.

Mr and Mrs George Hill Injured

On Monday forenoon a serious trap accident occurred in Mottram-road, Stalybridge. Mr and Mrs George HILL (of the firm of Messrs John HILL and Sons, Tudno Cake Factory, Ashton) were driving from their residence at Bower Fold, and when in Mottram-road one of the wheels crossed a large stone. The effect of the lurch which the trap gave was that one of the shafts snapped and Mr and Mrs HILL were both thrown to the ground.

Mrs HILL was found to be the most unfortunate, she being rather badly bruised; but Mr HILL, though severely shaken, was not seriously injured. Assistance was quickly at hand, Mr and Mrs HILL being removed back to their home, and we are glad to hear they are progressing favourably towards recovery. The horse, being frightened, dashed away, but was eventually secured near the Town Hall.

Appeal To Old Ashton Families

Sir," I am busy, at my spare moments, in writing the history of Ashton-under-Lyne for an expansive work on the county, and am pushed by the London publishers to have the whole of my manuscript in their hands by next week. Even in the midst of local excitement may I venture to ask for the kind assistance of those whose long residence in this town and neighbourhood, and whose family connections go very far back in point of time, either to supply me with, or indicate where I could find, at once, the following particulars, viz:"
  1. Who first brought the cotton industry into the borough?
  2. Where and by whom was the first day school carried on.
  3. Where was the "village pond" situated, and when was it abolished?
  4. Who was the last person exposed in the stocks?
  5. What families first adopted improved methods in manufacturing industry, and in dwellings for the working classes?
  6. What were the common amusements and recreations of the people between 1745 and 1800 in this town.

Thanking those who will kindly come to my help in anticipation, and for your own kind courtesy," I am, Yours truly,
A PARK, Warrington Terrace, Ashton-under-Lyne
31st October 1901

A countryman entered a St Alban s Hotel and took his seat at a table opposite a customer who had a bottle of wine. Supposing the wine to be common property, the inexperienced countryman poured out a glass for himself, and drank it with evident delight.

"That s cool!" exclaimed the owner of the wine, indignantly. "Yes," replied the other; "I should think there was ice in it."

The widow of a celebrated Newcastle manufacturer of fireworks, wishing to erect a monument to her husband s memory, took occasion to visit several cemeteries to choose a style and get some ideas for an inscription. One epitaph over the grave of an eminent composer delighted her beyond measure. She was so charmed with the sentiment that she adopted it. Accordingly on her husband s monument, the following inscription appeared in due time:"
Erected by his Spouse
To the memory if A " B "
Manufacturer of Fireworks
He has gone to the only place
Where his own works are excelled

Sir," May I be allowed a brief space in your paper to call attention to a subject that is pressing heavily on the hearts and consciences of many thousands in our land? I refer to the terrible child mortality in the Concentration Camps in South Africa. The official information we now posses is appalling. During the month of September, poor, innocent, little children died at the rate of 433 per thousand per annum! These figures, representing as they do such a vast amount of sorrow and suffering, if they were seriously pondered, could not fail to awaken our horror and to arouse us to action.

Whatever our views on the origin of the war " and these differ widely " need they be a bar to united effort in the direction of earnestly his Majesty s Government to instantly institute such reforms in the conduct of these death camps as will arrest this shocking waste of childlife? I believe it is generally accepted that, things being as they are, these camps will have to be continued for many months, it may be for a year or more. Is it not then our imperative duty to urge that the conditions of life therein shall be as healthy, and wholesome, and pleasant as it is possible to make them, and at whatever cost?

If we fail now we shall hand down to our children a name covered with shame, and our country will become a reproach in the eyes of the world. It was my privilege yesterday to attend a meeting in the city of Manchester, at which it was suggested that a town s meeting should be called, and also that a memorial be largely signed. Could not something be done here? I will gladly associate myself with any movement in this direction; only for the sake of the "innocents," and of the future of our beloved land, let us act with promptitude.

Believe me, sir, always yours faithfully,
Chapel Hill, Dukinfield

Burglar and Householder Roll Downstairs

At the Ashton Borough Police Court on Saturday, a man who gave the name of William WILSON, and whose head was swathed in plasters, was charged with stealing a pair of boots, the property of Joseph HAMPSON, of 130 Dean-street, on the 24th." The Chief Constable said he proposed to offer evidence for a remand until next Thursday, as he wanted to make some further inquiries respecting the prisoner s antecedents.

Joseph HAMPSON was then called, and said that on Thursday evening, about seven o clock, he was in the house downstairs, and heard a noise upstairs. He procured the poker, and, thus armed, he proceeded upstairs to investigate. In the front bedroom he found the room disturbed and several drawers open. He went to the landing and found the back bedroom door closed. He tried to open it but felt that someone was pushing at it on the inside.

He had the poker in one hand and a lighted taper in the other. As he was transferring these from one hand to the other, the door was opened and the prisoner made a grab to get hold of him. He, however, struck him on the head with the poker. Prisoner rushed on him again, and after a short struggle on the landing, they both rolled downstairs. The prisoner s head was severely injured in the fall, and when arrested his wounds had to be attended to by the police surgeon. When searched a pair of boots were found in the prisoner s pockets." Upon this evidence the magistrates granted a remand.

At the Ashton County Police Court on Wednesday, F PARKIN pleaded guilty to being drunk at Hurst on October 12th, and as there were five previous convictions recorded against defendant, he was fined 10s or 7 days  imprisonment.

FAREWELL GATHERING " A gathering was held on Wednesday evening at 88 King-street, Hurst, to bid farewell to Mrs Alfred TAYLOR, formerly of Hurst, who is leaving the village for America. Advantage was taken of the opportunity to present her with several presents from her friends. A most enjoyable evening was spent. Songs were given by Mr Joe ASPINALL, Mr MARGERSON, Mrs Alfred TAYLOR, Mrs KENYON, Mrs HOLT, Mrs SMITH, Mrs ASPIN, and Miss HOPWOOD.

SMOKING CONCERT AT THE BAND CLUB " The first "smoker" of the season was held at the above club on Thursday evening week. The chair was taken by Councillor R S OLDHAM, supported by Councillor SCHOFIELD, Messrs W EMMETT, W WHITEHEAD, A T BENTLEY, and other gentlemen. The first item on the programme was an overture by the pianist, Mr HOYLE. Song succeeded song in rapid succession, each artiste thoroughly pleasing the goodly company assembled. Mr LOFTUS needs special mention for his great ability as a comic artist, giving several songs, and greatly amusing the audience. Another pleasing feature was the sweet singing of Master Henry NIELD. Great praise is due to the rest of the artistes. Messrs FITTON and HANDLEY who, as tenor and baritone respectively, gave every satisfaction.

The death is announced of Miss Florrie FLETCHER, eldest daughter of Mr Thomas FLETCHER, manager at the Hurst Mills Company Limited. At all times Florrie was of a very amiable disposition, and this enlisted for her a large circle of friends. Three weeks last Monday she began to be ill, but no alarming symptoms developed till a week last Monday, when, after having three local doctors attending her, the services of Dr WRIGHT, physician, of Manchester, were requisitioned, but despite the best skill and the most careful nursing, death ensued on Sunday morning. Florrie was fourteen years of age. The funeral took place Wednesday afternoon at the Dukinfield cemetery when expressions of regret and sympathy were expressed on all hands by a large number who witnessed it.

Feelings of sorrow and regret have been generally expressed at the sad loss which the town has suffered by the death of Miss Jane JUDSON, of Park View, Currier-lane, Ashton, which took place in the early hours of Wednesday morning. The deceased lady was the daughter of the late Mr J E JUDSON, leather merchant, Ashton, and sister of Mr Giles JUDSON, Brooklands, Stalybridge, leather merchant. She was in her 59th year.

Death was due to congestion of the lungs and heart failure. About three months ago, she went on a visit to Tynemouth, and it was on returning home that the symptoms which caused her death began to reveal themselves, and Dr HUGHES was called in. Her condition became serious, and two consultants from Manchester were consulted without avail.

The deceased lady was a member of a well-known and highly respected Ashton family and a native of the town. Of her it can be truly said that she was a martyr to over work, and that she had laid down her life in the cause which she had so dear to her heart, that of charity, for scarcely had she a moment to call her own, so deeply engrossed was she in attending meetings and in organising philanthropic work in the town, in connection with which benevolent work it is evident that she overstrained herself.

She was prominently associated with the Ashton Parish Church as a devoted and much beloved lay worker. She was very popular as a parochial visitor; was hon. Treasurer of the Parish Church Sunday School Convalescent Fund, and hon. Treasurer of the Ashton Benevolent Institution; also hon. Treasurer of the Girls  Friendly Society, and for over twenty years taught in the Parish Church Sunday School.

On Saturday last at the Co-operative Hall, Portland-street, the celebrations took place of the coming of age of James Henry WRIGHT, clerk at Messrs Jones and Company s sewing machine works, Guidebridge, when about sixty relatives and friends partook of a good substantial knife and fork tea. After the tea the room was cleared for dancing and singing. Mr W PANCOTT officiated on the piano, and opened the ball with an overture "March", afterwards a polka which all seemed to enjoy, next came songs by Mr Samuel HADFIELD, selections by Mr H HAYES on the piano, while Mr STATHAM gave a song." PS " The above celebration had been postponed for several weeks in consequence of a death in the family.
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