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What Brett Works Might Have Been?
From a 1908 letterhead of Firmin & Company, Cocoa Fibre Mat & Matting Weavers, Rope & Twine Spinners.
Is this another plan that never happened?
from Hadleigh Urban District Council
To the Right Hon. H. H. Asquith, M.P.
As the Chairman of this Council I join with my colleagues in respectfully addressing you as the head of His Majesty’s Government, on behalf of the large population which we represent.
We desire earnestly to call the attention of His Majesty’s Government to the grave and increasing evils caused by the road motor traffic in our districts. Motor-driven vehicles of all kinds have rapidly increased in number, size, weight and speed, and have produced an intolerable state of things. The evils from which we suffer may be classified under five heads:- (1) Danger to life and limb; (2) nuisance from dust and noise; (3) enormously enhanced cost of road maintenance, which is borne by the local ratepayers; (4) damage to crops; (5) depreciation of property. The result is that while suffering serious loss and increased burdens the inhabitants are driven off their own roads.
Abundant evidence of the reality of these grievances can be produced if necessary. We particularly desire to call attention to the hardships inflicted on the poorer inhabitants who occupy cottages along the roads, and who form a large section of the rural and semi-rural population. They are quite defenceless and live in a state of misery, especially on Sundays and in fine weather.
We further wish to point out that while some drivers make a legitimate use of these powerful engines, and drive with care and consideration, a large number habitually disregard the existing regulations, ignore the rights of others, and exercise an intolerable oppression.
With a strong sense of responsibility we urgently press this question upon the consideration of His Majesty’s Government.
I have the honour to remain, Sir,
Your obedient humble servant,
Editor’s note: Herbert Henry Asquith was Liberal Prime Minister from 1908 to 1916.
Commonwealth War Graves
At the meeting on Monday 16th August we were pleased to welcome Peter Lee of the local branch of the Royal British Legion. Peter gave us a most interesting if somewhat sombre talk on the work of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission taking us back through the nation’s wars from Waterloo to the present day. The talk was well illustrated throughout with pictures of the beautifully tended graves and memorials looked after by the CWGC. What is now the Commonwealth War Graves Commission started with the work of Florence Nightingale in the Crimean War and later that done by Fabian Ware in setting-up Graves Registration Units in World-War I. This developed into the world-wide organisation of today tending the graves and memorials of the soldiers, sailors and airmen who gave their lives in the service of their country over the years. As Peter and the Royal British Legion say each year “We will remember them”.
On Tuesday 12th October Michael Stone will be responding to the question “What did ‘ag labs’ actually do?” at the next meeting, in the Old Town Hall at 8pm. We know that these abbreviations mask a great deal of painful work in all weathers, but do they mask a great range of skills? This talk gives a detailed answer from 1842/3, using an unpublished source from a mid-Suffolk estate. Day by day the activities of the farm staff are recalled. Entry is free for members, £2 for others.