Thurrock News: June 1914: Brass bands, planning and the passing of Emily Little

YT is chronicling the news from March 1914 to December 1918. As we go along we hope to reflect the news as the country descends into war. For now, life goes on with brass bands, planning applications and memorials. Life will very soon change.

Band Contest in Grays

ON Whit-Monday [1st June] a successful band contest was held on the recreation ground, Grays, promoted by the Grays Temperance Silver Prize Band and the Grays Tradesmen’s Association. Fortunately the weather was delightfully fine, and there were between 3,000 to 4,000 spectators present, including many visitors to the town, who accompanied their respective bands. In addition to the band contest a series of fire brigade competitions was held and this provided interesting sport during the afternoon. This is the first occasion for several years that any event has been held in Grays on a Whit-Monday, and the organisers are to be deservedly congratulated upon the success that attended their efforts, and no doubt they will be encouraged to make the function an annual one.

There were two sections to the band competition. In the first section three bands competed, and in the second section there were six entrants. The number of men who were engaged in the nine competing bands was 225. The test piece for section 1 was “The Outlaw”, the first prize being £5 and the second £2.10s. The adjudicators award was as follows: – 1, Willesden Town [Conductor Mr. C. McManns], 2, Battersea Temperance [Conductor Mr. T. Taylor], 3, Christ Church, Leyton [Conductor Mr. W. Nelson]. In the second section the test piece was “Classic Gems” and the result was as follows:- First prize [£8} Callenders Cable Works [Conductor Mr. T. Morgan], 2nd [£5] Dartford Silver Band [Conductor Mr. J. Jackson], 3rd [£3] Barnet Town [Conductor Mr. T.A. Cheek].

In the fire brigade competitions, the Rainham Fire Brigade won outright the old Grays Football Club Challenge Cup. This cup was presented to the Grays Fire Brigade in 1906 by the Grays Football Club to be competed for annually, and to be won three times consecutively or five times in all before becoming the absolute property of anyone, and by securing it for the third time in succession the Rainham Brigade now own the trophy. The Rainham Brigade are to be heartily congratulated upon their success. The cup given by the Hon. Rupert Guiness for four men hose cart drill was won for the first time by the Grays Fire Brigade, the competition being limited to the five riverside parishes.

At the conclusion of the competitions Mr. Charles H. Seabrook, in presenting the prizes, said the contest was quite a novelty in Grays and had turned out eminently successful. [Applause] . Every congratulation was due and ought to be extended to those who had organised the venture. {Hear,Hear]. It was a good beginning and he hoped next year it would be repeated on a much larger scale and would meet with even greater success. [Applause]. With regard to the Grays Temperance Band he was very pleased to see the advancement that it was making, and the excellent tone of their playing. He hoped that the town would do every thing to help the band in its progress, and he also wished that, the Urban Council would provide more comfortable seats in the park. [Applause}.
In the evening the grounds were thrown open and the Grays Temperance Silver Prize Band played music for dancing.

HOUSING TOWN PLANNING ETC.,ACT , 1909 URBAN DISTRICT OF GRAYS THURROCK TOWN PLANNING SCHEME 1914 NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN THAT THE GRAYS THURROCK URBAN DISTRICT COUNCIL,HAS THIS DAY TRANSMITTED TO THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT BOARD AN APPLICATION FOR THE APPROVAL, OF THE PREPARATION OF A TOWN PLANNING SCHEME IN RELATION TO CERTAIN LANDS comprising parts of the Parishes of Aveley, West Thurrock, Stifford, Grays Thurrock and Little Thurrock, in the County of Essex. A RESOLUTION THAT SUCH APPLICATION SHOULD BE MADE, HAVING BEEN PASSED BY THE GRAYS THURROCK URBAN DISTRICT COUNCIL AT A MEETING OF THE COUNCIL HELD ON THE 8TH DAY OF APRIL, 1914. Dated this 4th day of June, 1914. HATTON AND ASPLIN Clerks to the Grays Thurrock Urban District Council
ASLEEP IN A WAGON At Romford Petty Session, on Thursday, before Henry Joslin. Esq. [in the chair] and other justices, Harry Brown, 16, a horseman, of Tadlows, Upminster, was summoned for sitting on a wagon without having proper control of the horse, at Hornchurch on June 6th. P.s Crowe said defendant was asleep on the front part of his wagon at 3.15 p,m. Witness had previously warned the defendant. The reins were not in the defendant’s hands. Defendant was fined 2s.6d and 4s.costs
BY THE WAY [Editors comment Saturday June 6th, 1914]
The officers of Grays Urban Council have just issued their annual reports, and they make very interesting reading. The surveyor [Mr. A.C. James], one of the most efficient road-makers in the county, states that the surface tarring stood well through the winter months, but the wet weather in March-rain fell on 24 out of 31 days-caused the traffic to do more damage to the roads in that period than during the preceding six months.

Heavily-laden motor vehicles are assisting to crush the roads out of shape in some places, especially in Palmer’s Avenue, which, unfortunately, is entirely without proper foundation. The effect of tar-spraying is most noticeable in road scavenging. Street sweepers are now 20 per cent less than previously, enabling the mileage scavenged to be increased 12 and1/2 per cent. The expenditure upon street watering is also the lowest yet recorded. This is “good pioneer work, of which Grays may well be proud”.

The Council have two rain gauges , one at the depot in Stanley Road the other at the sewage disposal works in Manor Way. At the former place the fall registered was 23.61 and at the latter 23.07, a difference of three-quarters of an inch. Mr. James adds the comment; “Comparison of the two records shows considerable variation in the number of wet days and in the quantity registered on individual days, somewhat surprising when the short distance between the two points is considered.

The number of buildings erected was 27 as against 11 the year before and 20 in 1911-12. One would expect from the industrial activity which has been going on all around that building should be much more active. Upon the question of the provision of dwellings for workmen, the Medical Officer reports:- “Though the demand for houses suitable for the working class is said to be not so acute as it was a year ago, it is still undoubtedly considerable, and building by private enterprise cannot be said to be keeping pace with the requirements of the neighbourhood.

The Urban Council have given this question full consideration, and for the present have decided not to enter upon any further building undertaking, on the grounds that a considerable number of houses are being erected in the adjoining parish of Little Thurrock, also that negotiations for the construction of large numbers of working class houses are being conducted by the authorities of Tilbury and to a less extent in West Thurrock districts, where a large proportion of the residents of Grays, and those who seek houses, are employed.”

Dr. Ward notes that the birth rate was 26.8 as compared with 23.9 for the whole of England and Wales-an excellent record for our town. The death rate was only 9.9 as against 13.4 for the whole of England and Wales-another opportunity for a pat on the back. The infantile mortality rate was 81, as against 109 for the whole of the country-a really creditable result, though few will deny that it ought to be lower even than that.

Funeral of Emma Lydia Little

The interment took place at the Grays New Cemetery on Thursday [4th June] of an old and much respected inhabitant of Grays, in the person of Mrs Little, widow, residing at 213 London Road, Grays. The body was enclosed in a polished elm coffin, with brass fittings, which bore the inscription “Emma Lydia Little died May 29th[?], 1914 aged 82 years. The chief mourners were the sons, daughters , grandchildren and other relatives. There was a large number of friends at the graveside and the service was conducted by the Rev. William Bryars, United Methodist Minister, and Messrs. Thompson and Sons were the undertakers.

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