Old News, 1966
Next week Scouts in the Wigan area - and all over the country - will be offering their services to householders and institutions under the Bob-a-Job scheme.
Scouts do not tout for money - they never rattle collection boxes or run flag days. One of the principles of the Movement is that boys are trained to earn money they need for their Scouting. Bob-a-Job is one of the ways they do it.
They will come to doors and ask for a job to do, but will they please remember the following:
The Scouts will like it if they are treated seriously and given real work for a real reward.
Fire caused an estimated £7,000 worth of damage at two town centre shops on Monday night. The outbreak spread from the soft furnishings shop of Berwick James Lowe in Hallgate to the next-door premises of Harry Mayall, decorator.
At Lowe's, the fire started in a ground floor office and carpets and other house furnishings were badly damaged. At Mayall's wallpaper valued at £400 was damaged. The alarm was raised by Mr. Harry Wright, licensee of the Bricklayer's Arms, lower down Hallgate, who spotted the flames while stood at the bar of his public house.
Mr. Berwick Lowe, 32, former Conservative member of Wigan Town Council, said he was called from his Shevington home on Monday night and told that his shop was on fire. After examining the debris on Tuesday morning, he estimated the damage at £7,000.
Mr Lowe, who has another furnishings shop in Southport, added: "I hope to hire a hall as soon as possible to carry on with my business. And I hope to be back to normal in three weeks."
Despite the damage at Harry Mayall's shop, business was as usual on Tuesday.
Mr. Lowe said later that he was moving to temporary premises at 13-15 Wallgate.
A Wigan shop assistant told a court on Monday how she found part of an insect embedded between layers of jelly and custard as she was eating a trifle.
Before Wigan Borough Magistrates' Court, accused of selling the trifle not of the substance demanded by the purchaser, was the firm of Sarah Lynn Ltd., whose local shop is in Mesnes Street, Wigan. The firm denied the offence - under the Food and Drugs Act - and were represented by Mr. Cyril Morris.
Mrs. Mary Horton, of Sandbrook Road, Orrell said on 7th December, she bought a trifle, costing 1s., from Sarah Lynn's confectioners shop in Mesnes Street.
Returning to her place of employment she began eating the trifle with a spoon.
"I saw a black object between the layers of custard and jelly. I looked at it and felt sick," said Mrs. Horton.
Cross-examined, Mrs. Horton said she had been a customer at Sarah Lynn's for "some time" and had been attracted there because it was a very clean looking shop.
"Sometimes, pranks are played among the girls at work - but not this sort of thing," she added.
Mr. John Marsh, Chief Public Health Inspector for Wigan Corporation, said the trifle was handed to him by a Mrs. Cunningham, who worked at the same shop as Mrs. Horton.
"The trifle contained part of an insect, and the following day an official of the firm called at my office and apologised. He said they were not satisfied with their present bakehouse in Wigan Lane. He also said that 'that kind of thing was likely to happen' in the premises now used," said Mr. Marsh.
Mr. Miles Standish, of Bolton, full-time hygiene officer employed by Sarah Lynn's said he made frequent visits to all the firm's shops, and they were proud of their high standards.
"We regard ourselves as setting the standard in the industry and we believe that our bakehouses are the best in the country," he said.
Mr. Standish said their bakehouse in Wigan Lane was far too small for their requirements and they were negotiating with Wigan Corporation for an extension on land adjoining the present bakehouse.
"I am quite confident," he said, "that there is no infestation in our bakehouse, which is cleaned daily. In my opinion, this insect gained entry into the trifle after manufacture, and the only explanation I can offer is that the insect fell on to the trifle."
Mr. Morris said it was a matter of great regret to the firm that this had happened. "And the company does not want to lose its good reputation because of one isolated incident," he said.
After a long retirement, the Magistrates fined the firm £10 and ordered them to pay £12 costs.
Giving a progress report on the new Baths at the monthly meeting of Wigan Town Council on Tuesday, Baths Committee Chairman Councillor T. Monks revealed that the pool will be used for swimming instruction before it is opened to the general public.
Councillor Monks said that the pool was almost completely full and after the school holidays the Baths might be used for swimming instruction. This would depend on whether the water heating system was doing its job properly.
"If everything is going well we shall then open the Baths to the general public," said Councillor Monks.
He added that both pools in the old baths would be in action again next week after repairs to the filter system and work would shortly begin on the modernisation and alteration of these baths.
On Wednesday, the Baths Manager, Mr. T. E. Millar, told the Observer that he had still received no definite handing-over date from the contractors working on the new baths.
"Until we are given that date it is impossible to say when the official opening will take place," he said. "But it will be possible, when the seating and fittings around the pool are completed, to open the baths for organised parties of schoolchildren."
"I should think it will be three or four weeks before the general public can be allowed in."
Rubbish left by traders after the weekly Ashton Market is causing concern among members of Ashton Council's Health Committee.
Councillor R. H. Jones raised the point at Tuesday's meeting, when he said: "If my information is correct, nobody seems to know which department is responsible for clearing away the debris after market day. On three weekends out of the last five, an accumulation of rubbish has been left over the week-end. It is high time we formed a policy on this."
Councillor Jones said he had been told that some of the men were on strike. He thought some immediate action should be taken to deal with the situation. What was going on was disgraceful.
The Chairman, Councillor G. Lockett, said that if the Market was not cleaned properly, it could turn into a hazard to public health.
"As far as I'm concerned," he said, "the Markets Committee is partly responsible for this."
The Public Health Inspector, Mr. F. Burrows, said that until a couple of years ago, the workmen of the Highways department picked up the rubbish after Market Day.
"But the employees decided they didn't want to carry on the work. I approached the Cleansing Department, and the Superintendent said his workmen did not want to deal with the rubbish," said Mr. Burrows.
After Councillor Jones had siad one or other department should be made responsible for clearing the market, it was decided that the matter be thrashed out at the next Markets Committee meeting.
Charges for the use of the multi-storey car park to be built by the Corporation in Millgate have been approved in principle by the Finance Committee. The charges were decided after inquiries had been made in other towns. In some other towns a flat rate of two shillings is charged but in the multi-storey car parks in Preston and Blackpool a sliding scale is adopted. This is to encourage the short-stay parker.
The sliding scale principle has been accepted for Wigan. Present intentions are by no means finalized but the scale of charge could start at sixpence for the first two hours and 1s. 6d. for two to four hours stay, rising to 5s. 0d. or 6s. 0d. for all day. As the multi-storey car park is a new venture for Wigan, a slow start is being recommended in the matter of charges.
The annual running costs of the car park depend on the opening hours, the system of control and the labour force, it is pointed out to the Finance Committee. These factors have yet to be decided but experience of other local authorities points to the fact that the car park should be open on six days a week from 8 a.m. to 11-30 p.m. with provision for overnight parking at a special charge.
Preston's car park is left open for free parking during the night and on Sundays but locally the feeling is that this invokes difficulties such as vandalism.
A labour force of between four and six attendants is envisaged. They would be employed on the shift system. Four attendants, it is thought, will be sufficient at first, increased by two or more at a later date. The car park will be built in two phases.
The ultimate intention is to provide car parking for 522 cars. Space for 306 cars will be provided in the first building phase. A public house will be incorporated in the car park.