9 July 1904

A youth, named Peter DEANE, residing at Ashton-road, Oldham, presented an abject appearance in the dock at the Ashton County Police Court on Saturday before Mr J. BEARDOE-GRUNDY, charged with an assault on a girl named Edith NEIGHBOUR, aged seven years, daughter of Thomas NEIGHBOUR, living at Dean Shutt, Bardsley.

When his name was called, the defendant paid no heed, his face being covered by a handkerchief, and when aroused by a constable, and told to stand up, he displayed his utter helplessness by leaning forward over the side of the dock. He made no reply to the charge. — Superintendent HEWITT said the defendant was given into custody on Friday. The girl went to a school at Parkbridge, and on returning home on Thursday afternoon she made a complaint to her mother.

The mother, Edith Annie NEIGHBOUR, deposed to her child complaining. She was walking along the road with her on Friday, when she cried out "that's the man: don't let him touch me." — The case was remanded to Wednesday, the defendant being allowed bail, himself in £10, and two sureties of £5 each.

DEANE again stood up in the dock at Wednesday's Court. The offence had been reduced to one of aggravated assault. Superintendent HEWITT detailed the facts of the case, and the following evidence was then given:

Edith Annie NEIGHBOUR, mother of the child, corroborated the superintendent, and said that the day after the had complained, they kept a watch on the footpath leading from Dean-street to the station. They saw DEANE coming, and the child recognised him. Witness told the village policeman the same day. The offence would take place about half-past four.

Cross-examined by Mr LEES: She was by herself, but DEANE had another boy with him. When waiting on the footpath many men had passed before DEANE arrived. Edith NEIGHBOUR, the complainant, then gave evidence bearing out the mother's statement. — Constable BARBER deposed to having received prisoner in custody. Charged at the police station, he made no answer. Charged by the mother, he denied the offence.

DEANE was sworn, and gave evidence, and said he worked at the Honeywell. On the date in question the mill was stopped, and his father sent him to "cob" some pigeons. He left home about 10 past 4, and cobbed his pigeons about 5 to 5. On his way he obtained a stop watch from some friends with which to time the flight of the pigeons. The Parkbridge school would be out of his way.

He met the men coming back, and obtained the stop watch about half past four. At five minutes to five he threw the pigeons up. He never met the girl on the return journey. The next day he went again, and was stopped. He denied any knowledge of the affair.

Cross-examined by Superintendent HEWITT: He went by Atlas-road to Park-road, and to the top of Dean Shutt because it was the nearest. — Superintendent HEWITT: Do you mean to tell me that it is sooner by Dean Shutt than by the footpath through Fairbottom? — No answer. — Cross-examined further: he didn't go that way the day before.

Peter DEANE, father of the boy, said he left the house about 10 past four to toss them up at the other end of Lees-road. Judging by the time the pigeons arrived back, they had been tossed up at the right time. — Joseph GREEN, one of the men who gave the boy the stop watch, said that where they had met DEANE was not in the way of the school.

The Chairman said the Bench thought the offence had been proved, and DEANE would be fined 10s. and costs, a lenient sentence.

A Reformatory School Application. — Alfred PRITCHARD, a chimney sweeper, of 5, Walter’s Court, Dukinfield, was summoned to show cause why he should not contribute towards the maintenance of his son, Frank PRITCHARD, aged 12 years, who had been committed to the Manchester and Salford Reformatory School at Blackley.

Superintendent CROGHAN said defendant's son was recently committed at Ashton-under-Lyne to the Manchester and Salford Reformatory School for stealing. He (the superintendent) had received a communication from the Inspector of Reformatory Industrial Schools asking him to see if PRITCHARD would make an effort to contribute towards the maintenance of his boy.

He was seen, and absolutely refused to make any offer whatever. He said, "You have took him away, and you will have to keep him." Defendant had no one dependent upon him for support but himself. It was sheer nonsense for the defendant to think that the reformatories would keep his son for nothing.

Detective-sergeant KENNY gave evidence to the effect that he had known defendant five years. He had no one but himself to support. His son and daughter were both earning their own living. — Superintendent CROGHAN made an application for an order for the defendant to contribute 1s. per week. He said the authorities would be satisfied with that amount.

Defendant said his son went out with the brushes, but did not bring in what supported him, and all he had to depend upon was a daughter and a son-in-law, who gave him a bit of food and shelter. — The Chairman said defendant had no right whatever to have his boy put on the rates and be paid for by the public. He would have to pay 1s. per week, and the costs of the case. If the Reformatory School authorities had asked for more, he was quite sure the Bench would have granted it.

Tramcar and Trip Lurry in Collision — Children's Miraculous Escapes

About half-past seven on Saturday evening a startling accident occurred in Hyde-lane, and created a considerable sensation in the town. A large party of children from the Dukinfield Working Men's Mission were conveyed on lurries from Dukinfield to Werneth Low, to spend a half-day on this pleasant and bracing hill which overlooks the town of Hyde.

They were returning home by way of Stockport-road, and when near Zion Chapel one of the lurries came into collision with tramcar No. 22, driven by a man named Alfred GOSLING. The lurry turned over and all the children were thrown into the street. A man named Saml. HIBBERT, of Kinder-street, Stalybridge, who was with the children, sustained injury to his leg, and was attended by Dr ALLCOCK.

Two or three of the children — whose names are not known — were slightly hurt, but these were able to proceed to their homes, and the rest of them escaped without injury, although somewhat shaken. It was very remarkable that some of them were not seriously injured

Honour to a Dukinfield Lady

The first "degree-day" since the re-construction of the above university was held last Saturday, and was naturally regarded as an occasion of special importance. The spacious Whitworth Hall, which provides an appropriate setting for these ceremonies, was filled with interested spectators, and undergraduates — their ranks swollen by the presence of delegates to the Inter—University Congress — found scarcely sufficient accommodation in the galleries at the end of the hall. But the crowding together of the students did not lessen their high spirits.

While Dr Kendrick PYNE, at the organ, was filling the hall with music that pleasantly relieved the tedium of waiting, the undergraduates were comparatively subdued. But when the procession entered, the organ ceased, they recognised their opportunity, and thenceforward cheered, and sang, and joked in the old style.

In the procession were more than two hundred members of the university, who were about to receive degrees, among them being a considerable number of women graduates, many of them, like the recipients of degrees, wearing cap and gown, with hood of more or less brilliant hue.

On the previous Tuesday, at the invitation of the women students of the Bayer laboratories, a large number of the friends of Miss Edith M. PRATT, M.Sc., eldest daughter of Alderman H. PRATT, J.P., Park House, Mayor of Dukinfield, gathered in the women's common room of Owens College, to congratulate Miss PRATT upon having attained the degree of Doctor of Science in the Manchester University.

Congratulatory speeches were made by Miss SYKES(?) M.Sc. (an old colleague of Miss PRATT's), Professor HICKSON, and Professor WELSH (Professors of Biology and Botany in the Manchester University. Afterwards the scarlet and yellow robes appertaining to the Doctors degree were presented to Miss PRATT on behalf of the past and present science women students by Miss LLOYD JONES. The remaining portion of the evening was taken up with musical selections by the students and members of the staff.

As stated above, the degree ceremony took place on Saturday afternoon. It was an imposing function. The Lord Mayor of Manchester, in his robes of scarlet and ermine, together with the Mayor of Salford, in is gown of black and gold, preceded the Vice Chancellor, a stately figure in the picturesque robes of his office. Maces were carried before the Lord Mayor and the Vice Chancellor, and both the municipal representatives wore their massive gold chains.

As Earl Spencer, the Chancellor of the University, was not sufficiently well to be present, the degrees were conferred by the Vice Chancellor, Professor Alfred HOPKINSON, L.L.D., K.C. Miss PRATT was presented for her degree by Professor HICKSON, her professor at the Victoria University.

In the evening the women graduates were invited to supper at the Midland Hotel, at which Miss PRATT was warmly congratulated and toasted. In response she made a short speech, comparing the present attitude of the public with regard to the higher education of women with that of twenty years ago, and paid grateful tribute to the pioneering work done by their predecessors in the women's department of the defunct Owens College, now represented by the University of Manchester.

The rather slippery setts at the corner of Wellington-road and Oldham-road have been responsible for a number of trap accidents. About 8 o'clock on Thursday evening a trap conveying Dr CORNS and Councillor E. BARLOW, who had been to a bowling match at Oldham, was turning from Oldham-road into Wellington-road, when the horse appeared to slip, but quickly recovered itself. The sudden jerk, however, threw the occupants of the trap out, fortunately without sustaining injury.

Remarkable Cures — Interesting Interviews

It has often been remarked that the number of people with deformed limbs, and cripples generally in Ashton and the out-districts, is out of all proportion to the population. Much of the deformity and lameness is the result of ignorance on the part of the parents themselves before a child has learned to walk.

At a time when the bones are mere gristle and not properly hardened, infants are made to support themselves on their feet, with the result that they become bow-legged, knock kneed, or, worse still, rickets, or injury to the joints leading to dislocation, disease, &c., may ensue. As the twig is bent, so the tree inclines is a very good motto, which applies particularly to young children.

Although many, if not all, such cases are curable, as appears from the remarkable doings of Mr W. RAE, the Blantyre bonesetter, now at Bolton, still prevention is better than cure. To those so affected it will be good news to hear of the almost miraculous cures of cases similarly circumstanced to themselves, and when their authenticity is established by the experiences of residents of the locality, greater credence may be attached thereto.

On Friday last about half-a-dozen local cases journeyed to Bolton, where Mr RAE is at present treating patients. Three of the cases were from Hurst, one from Waterloo, and two from Ashton. The three Hurst cases journeyed together, and as they, along with the two Ashton cases, were unsuccessful in the ballot which took place, and consequently could not receive treatment during the Bolton visit unless Mr RAE varies his programme, it is undesirable to publish all the names.

The ballot referred to had to be resorted to on account of the thousands of applications for treatment. A ticket with a number was supplied to each applicant, 300 of whom were afterwards selected by ballot. One of the Hurst cases was a boy residing at Hurst Cross, suffering from hip disease, and wearing an iron "patten" on one of his shoes.

Another was a girl in Princess-street with one of her feet paralysed, and the third a girl whose name there is no necessity to withhold on account of the fact that she underwent one operation at RAE's hands last Whitsuntide, and derived considerable benefit. She is the 18 year old daughter of Mr Thos. Wild LEES, residing in King-street, Hurst. The Waterloo case was a boy named TRAVIS, who was operated upon.

The Ashton cases included the six year old boy of a well-known tradesman, who two years ago fell from a step and injured his hip. It was diagnosed as hip disease, though the father is of the opinion that the joint was in some way dislocated. The hip had become rigid, and the leg grown thin, apparently through the blood circulation having been interfered with in some way. It is the intention of the father to take him to Blantyre.

The two other cases — one the niece of a tradesman, and the other the sixteen year old daughter of a machinist — are both deformations. An Ashton man named FARRAR is stated to have undergone treatment on Wednesday, but we cannot trace his identity.

A Hurst Case
In the case of Miss LEES, daughter of Mr T. W. LEES, of Hurst, who first received treatment last Whitsuntide, it may be stated that although unsuccessful in her second application last Friday she has since received a notification of selection amongst a further list of 100 cases which Mr RAE proposes to take if possible at Bolton. She has been a cripple from birth, and requires crutches to go about.

It has often been remarked that if the Scotch miner cured her he would be a marvel. Her spine, shoulder, legs, and feet are the parts affected, the tendons being so taut as to draw the legs and feet out of shape so that she cannot walk with the soles of the feet on the ground. When she went to Blantyre her back and right shoulder were drawn, and she could not sit straight, but now she is able to sit up with ease.

Only the latter have yet to be operated upon, the legs and feet being reserved for the second visit. She is so delighted with the result that she is eager to undergo the second operation, and was greatly disappointed when she had to return home without accomplishing her object.

"I felt as if I could jump and skip off," she said in answer to an inquiry as to her feelings after the operation at Blantyre. "he told me," she said, "that he had cured scores of worse cases than mine, and that he would cure me. He said I was a big girl, and I should grow taller after the operation." — Did you experience any pain? Hardly any to speak of; only a twitch or two as the bones of the spine and shoulder were pressed into their proper position. I could easily tell when they were right by the slight crack and the cosy sensation which followed.

How did he operate? I had to lie down on a couch, and he pressed his forefinger and thumb along the spine until he came to the point which he said was the seat of the disease. That was in the small of the back. He said the muscles were deranged. The spine at that time pressed inwards and was indiscernible to the naked eye; now it comprises an ordinary appearance, and my shoulder is in the right position.

Are you still keeping up any treatment? Only that which he prescribed, quite simple, viz that when I went to bed I should lie for some time to come on my back on a board or hard surface to allow the bones to grow into position. — Had you any faith in the cure? Yes; the moment he put his fingers on my back I fell under his influence. His fingers felt full of electricity and force.

You think you are getting well then? Yes, there had been a decided improvement. I am anxiously waiting for the operation on the legs and feet, as I am looking forward to a holiday in the Isle of Man in August, and on my return if the result is what I anticipate, I hope to commence some useful occupation and be of assistance to my parents. At no time in my life have I been able to take up any regular occupation. In conclusion she expressed a hope that she would soon be able to banish her crutches for ever.

Benefit to a Taunton Boy
Hearing that a Taunton youngster had experienced benefit by the miraculous touch of Mr RAE's hand, a "Reporter" representative called on Mrs TRAVIS, grandmother of a young boy named Benjamin TRAVIS, who for years has suffered from curvature of the spine and diseased hip, and gleaned several interesting facts and irrefutable testimonies to the healing power of the Scotch bonesetter.

For five years, it appeared, the little fellow had been a cripple through, so Mr RAE told his grandmother, who took him to Bolton, a fall when young. Their hopes of obtaining a successful ballot paper were meagre when they journeyed to Bolton on the Friday. Arrived there, however, the usual mode of procedure was passed through, and shortly after they were overjoyed to hear that they had obtained a paper.

Of course the two returned to Ashton with light hearts, and once more on Saturday essayed the journey, and by the magic influence of their ticket, numbered 811, gained admittance to the presence of the wonderful doctor. After the wearisome but inevitable wait, the tenth case, which happened to be the TRAVIS's, was called.

Immediately on seeing the child, Mr RAE took him tenderly on his knee, and the while questioning him in his broad Scotch accent proceeded with the operation. "Why, manny," he said, whilst his skilful fingers kneaded and pulled the bones into position, "ye never tell't me your name," and thus diverting the youngster's thought. Mr RAE at last gave a strenuous pull, and with a click the operation was finished. "What's the matter with the manny?" he said at the commencement. "Hip disease, we think," answered Mrs TRAVIS. "Na, na," said Mr RAE, shaking his head doubtfully: "I dinna spey — I dinna spey."

Naturally the youngster was not able to walk home immediately, but felt great benefit the moment he left the hotel. He cannot walk without crutches for a long stretch, but practices at periods increasing in length daily. Mr RAE told his grandmother he should like to see him again, and accordingly in September the two will journey to Scotland. The benefit, however, is very apparent. The foot was three inches from the floor, but since treatment nearly touches.

Trials at Audenshaw — An Ingenious Contrivance

A new tramway car lifeguard has just appeared, which at a trial last Thursday was shown to have many advantages. The trial took place on the length of line on the Oldham, Ashton, and Hyde tramways which runs from the depot to the Packhorse Hotel at Denton.

A dummy, more or less resembling a human being, was laid across the track, and number 45 car — a heavy double decker — fitted with the Nuttall and Pearson contrivance, was set running at full speed towards it. The car met the obstacle, the cradle descended, swept it up, and stopped the car without the least apparent injury, and without the driver touching a single lever.

Four trials were made, and each exceeded the patentees' highest expectations. In the last trial the driver was presumed to have seen the obstacle, and by an action of one foot on a small lever the car was pulled up in a minimum of time.

The patentees of the contrivance claim that it encompasses three distinct objects with one mechanism, viz, the moment the object touches the gate in front of the car, the cradle falls, at the same time applying the brakes to the wheels, and cutting off the current from the motors, bringing the car to a standstill. Moreover, if the driver sees the obstacle a short distance ahead, he can stop the car as described above, bringing all three actions into play instantly.

In addition the patentees claim that the cradle cannot ride the obstacle — the fault of most of the contrivances of this character. The reason is that the cradle is usually placed at an angle of at least 45 degrees before it loosens itself; but in the present one, it flies loose instantly. The driver can also apply his ordinary brakes distinct from the lifeguard.

A Poverty Stricken Home

Mary and Annie ASPINALL were charged at the Ashton County Police Court, on Wednesday, with stealing coal from the Broadoak Colliery, Hurst. — William ROYLANCE, of Hazlehurst, watchman at the colliery, said on Monday morning, the coal produced was shown to him by Constable MARSHALL. Defendants had no right to take it. It was worth 3d.

Constable MARSHALL deposed to seeing the defendants leaving Nook Pit premises each carrying about 25lbs. weight of coal. They made a statement that they were allowed to pick coal, and witness took them to Mr WHITWORTH, manager, who repudiated it. One was a widow with four children, and the other a single woman. In the house of the married woman there were evidences of poverty, there being no fire in the grate and no coal.

Supt. HEWITT said he was instructed by Mr H. HALL, agent for the Stamford Estate, to say that they did not wish any severe measures taken. It was not possible any recurrence would take place, because the pit was now closed and the coal removed, therefore they wished the magistrates to extend clemency.

The defendant Mary ASPINALL said she had only 4s. 6d. a week coming in, and could not buy coal and pay rent, nor get sufficient food. — The Chairman (Mr Lees BROADBENT) said the Bench were very sorry for the defendants in their straitened circumstances, but there were places they could apply to for relief. The bench had extreme sympathy with them in their distress, and the case would be dismissed.

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