WHEELS OF INDUSTRY.
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The wheel of wealth will be slowed by ald difficulties of transport at whatever points arising, as 4 carriage is by the „roughness of the roads over which it runs."—John Beattie Crozier,
New Petrol Prices.
We have received, from Shell.-Mex, Ltd.., a list of the prices of motor spirit of all, grades throughout the -United Kingdom. The.selprices came into fOree on Thursday, August 18th, when a reduction of 5d. per gallon was made. The new prices are as follow (in all cases the prices are per gallon) :—
For cornmerciel consumers in England and Wales, Shell 2s. 2d., Mex 2s. ; Scotland, Shell 2s. 5d. Mex 2s. la.; Ireland, Shell 2s. 5d. Alex 2s. 3d. If the fuel is supplied in steel barrels the cost per gallon less than the.above prices, or if in bulk, asIfor petrol storage systems, 1-Lcl. per gallon less.
The effects of this. fall will certainly be far-reaching, and will result.'in the reduction, of running costs for all types of petrol propelled vehicles. Probably the first effect will be a reeision tif the fares charged by the London., General Omnibus Co. It may also have considerable effect on the fares charged for travelling by motor coach, and will thus enable these vehicles to compete more favourably with the railways.
Station Tolls for Taxicabs ?
A proposal has been made by the Commissioner of Polies to the Cab Trades Council to reimpose. the station toll charged to taxicab drivers before the war. Payment of the toll was suspended when control cams into:operation.. The sum charged was id., audit was payable at. all the London stations, the loss which the abolition 'of the toll represented being made up to the railways under the guarantee.
The suggested new toll is 2d., and there is general. opposition on the part of drivers to its introduction. No definite decision has yet been made to. reintroduce the toll, but it is suggested that the amoant should he recovered from the, hirer of the cab, although at is mass meeting of London cab drivers and owner drivers it was stated that the payment of thief. charge must eventually fall upsn the driver and not upon the fare.
A resolution was ipassed by the South London Cab Branch of the United Vehicle, Workers against payment of the toll, and it would appear that. a stringent boyeritteOf the railway stations, if the establishment of the toll is enforced, is not unlikely.
Tipping Wagons Wanted for the Argentine: According to a recent .advice received from the Commercial .Secretary to
Legation in Buenos Aires, the Board of Sanitary Works of that city requires tenders for the supply of four 2,000 kilogramme motor tipping wagons. The closing date for the receipt of tenders, which must be presented through a local agent, is September 6th. The specification is stated to be the same as that forwarded in connection with a similar call for tenders which was made last year, ad a copy of this can be seen at the dffiees of 'the Department of Overseas Trade, 35, Old Queen Street, 08 London, S.W., on application to Mr. Lawson (Room 48). In the event of a British manufacturer not being represented in the Argentine Republic, it may be possible to arrange with the London office of some Buenos Aires firm to present the tender. The names of these concerns are•available on application to the Department of Overseas Trade.
No Sidecar Taxicabs for London.
:sir. Mott,. the Home Secretary, stated in the House of Commons a few days ago that, in view of . the rec.om-, mendation of the Departmental committee on the Taxation and Regulation of Road Vehicles dated -January 6thiast, it was not desirable that. licences.. shourd be granted for eidecar taxicabs to ply for hire in the London area at present, and that it was too early yet to re-open the question.
Lights on Motor Vehicles.
' In a written reply to Viscount Curzon, who asked the Minister of Transport whether any proposals r`elating to the restriction of lights on motor vehicles are now before him, and; if so, whether he. will ensure 'before any spell proposals are brought into force that Parliament shall have an opportunity of discussing • them, Mr. Arthur Neal, Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry, states that the draft. of the third interim report of the Departmental. Committee on Lights on Vehicles is now in its final form. He understands that the adoption of any of the proposals for dealing with the matter will require legislation. •
Deatlhof Mr. R. E. Cadisch.
We regret to learn of the death of Mr. R. E. Cadisch, the proprietor of R. Cadisch and Sons, of 171, Great Portland Street London, W. 1, which took place suddenly at Cauterets in France on August 6th whilst be was on holiday. Although he took no part in the deliberations of the various associations connected with the motor trade in this country, he was well. known in the induetry. He not only carried on hiS own important business as an accessory factor, bet until quite recently he was also a director of the Zenith Carburetter Co., Ltd. He was a man, of great. busi.• ness ability and high character. His. three sons will 0:wry on the business.
In our last week's issue we reminded our readers that this year's International Tractor Trials and Power Farming • Exhibition opens on September 20th et. Shrewerdine. ne:ir Shrewsbury, -and continues netie September 24th. The paragraph was erroneously headed.
We know of a gentleman, owning a successful motor .business in Algiers, • who is desirous of taking in a partner to cope with the expaneidn' of the business. A business man with little •oe no technical knowledge, or one with sound technical qualifications and less commercial experience would do, the work being divided accordingly. Letters marked "-A " will be forvearded.
Transport in Roumania.
Severalcompanies operate motor lorries in Roumania, according to a, report of the Department of Overseas Trade, but it is understood that the cost or repairs, with the wear and tear of tyres due to the state, of the roads, and probably careless handling in some cases, leaves little profit in this business -under the system hitherto adopted. Quite re. cently an interest ha e been expressedin
2 and ton lorries for road transport, worked in conjunction with 'a 2 ton trailer. This distribution of the load aver four axles will probably prove more practicable than the use of heavier lorries in the country.
Many of the Main Coeds in Old Roumania are not in the hest of condiHoe, whilst the side roads are far all practical purposes unmade. At the same time, high-priced goods can be transported economically from and to -the large centres or population by this means, and there still remains a notable sphere of action for British firms who are able to send lorries to Roumania for the purpose of entering the transport business.
Halifax Municipal Garage.
The Transpdrt Department of the County Borough of Halifax has recently opened a new corporation garage. The Transport Cammittee was formed a little over, a year ago, its object being totake over all the transport services from the various departments and co-ordinate them into a central system. . 'The establishment of a municipal transport centre mustof necessity give better facilities than any separate department, hitherto eeisting. The committee has in its service 33 mechanical vehicles and 157 horse-drawn vehicles, the former consisting of eight steam vehicles with capacities ranging from 3i tons to 5 toes, and 25 petrol machines.
Sir Frederick Hall, relying to a question from Sir John Baird, in the House of Commons a few days ager; said that the tramcar and omnibus authorities in the Metropolitan area had been; notified by the Commissioner of Police that the statutory provisions as to excess 'paisseegers, which have net been enforced during the war, meet: be complied with as from October 1st. The Commissioner has satisfied' himself that sufficient buses and tramcars are now available to meet the requirements of the public even during the rush hours, and conseqiiently after that date. no passengers will be
allowed to stand. .
.Sir John Baird received a deputation of London -241.P.e on the decision a few days later, who'generally ageeea that the Order is unreasonable. He assured theist that representatives of tramcar and omnibus proprietors and of others interested, including the Ministry of Transport, would be received before the Order became effective.
Although straphanging is not pleasant while travelling, there is little doubt. that tile public would rather have overcrowding of this nature than inadequate facilities.
Motorbuses Booming at Oxford. •
So successful have the bus and coach ,ervices at Oxford become that the City if Oxfo-rd Motor Services, Ltd., have iutgrown their booking office accommolation at Carfax, in the centre of the
For some time past these offices have seen packed daily with visitors seeking nforroation about, and booking seats the great variety of attractive coach ixcursions which are run to the many tlaces of historic interest in the immehate neighbourhood, and also far afield. These offices have also served as a :ollecting mid distributing centre for the ixpress parcels delivery service, which is vorked so successfully in connection with he country bus routes.
Imposing new premises have recently seen secured, not far from the present
sffices,: in the " High.'' Structural alerations will shortly be commenced, and
permit of a spacious booking office ind waiting room accommodation, and a sarcels office of a size adequate to deal vith the rapidly increasing volum.e of -his class of traffic.
A representative of T4 (ocso Votor was recently enabled to inspect he new premises, under the guidance of N-tr. A. A. Tyler, the energetic general manager of this concern/ who has done so much to popularize, and to extend, be road services of Oxford and the surrounding district. .
raXi Owners' Bus Competition. The " strike " of taxicab, owners at the Liverpool Pier Head, due to the alleged unfair competition of the Corporation in running meter omnibuses between the Pier Head and the stations, has been. settled, • The Motor Omnibus Committee of the Corporation received a deputation of . the Liverpool Motor Hirers! Association, and, after the Association's solicitor had presented the case For the men, it was stated, on behalf of the committee, that it was only on Saturdays and Mondays that the corn-.
rnittee would have buses on the tramway side ot the floating bridge, and this would only be until the end of August. This arrangement satisfied the taximen, and peace now reigns on the troubled waters !
Motor Traffic in Glasgow.
The Mile End Ward Committee of Gfisgow has asked the corporation to make representations against any proposal to increase the speed of motor vehicles. The matter has been referred to a special committee which the corporation has appointed with regard to the question of the speed of motorcars in the city.
Tractor Price Reduction.
Mr. Turner Smith, managing director of Ancona Motor Co., Ltd., of 78-82, Brompton Road, S.W. 3, tells us that as a result of the visit of Mr. H. M. Wallis, the president of the Wallis Tractor Co., of America, to this country, and by special arrangement with Ruston and Hornsby, Ltd., of Lincoln, the manufacturers of the British Wallis tractor, the price has been reduced from E-495 to £40 to.r. Lincoln.
Motorbuses to the .Rescue.
Whilst part-of the St. Helens (Lancs.) tramway track is being relayed, the Corporation is employing two now Motor omnibuses ; hired from the Bristol Motor Omnibus Co., to convey passengers from the electrictramcars to and from the St. Helens Junction terminus.
It is possible, however, that permanent motorbus services will be established before the end of the year to link up St. Helens with Rainford and Billinge. It is now possible, by the way, to travel from Wigan t.) Widnes by motor omnibus. The stages are (1) Wigan to Billings j (2) Billinge to St. Helens; (3) by privately owned buses from St. Helens to Sutton Manor; (4) and the Widnes Corporation buses from Sutton Manor to Widnes.
Petroleum Production in • Roumania.
According to a report on economic conditions in Roumania, which has recently been issued, by the Department of Overseas Trade, the total production of crude petroleum in 1920 was 1,034,000 tons. About three-quarters of the total production for the year 1920 and 70 per cent. of the 1919 production was accounted for by the three largest companies—the Astra-Roniana, the SteauaRomana, and the Romana-Americana. In 1920 the Astra-RoMaria produced over 322,000 tons, the Steatia over 230,000 tons and the Romana-Americana over 180,000 tons.
This relative preponderance of the three large companies will probably Confine to be a feature of Roumanian oil production for some years to come.' unless the State lands are opened up for exploitation -in the near future. During the year under. review certain of the State lands were granted to a Roumanian company called the Industria Romans de Petrol (I.R.D.P.).
During 1920 a majority interest ill the capital of the Steaua-Romana was acquired by a Roninanian-French-Britisli group, in which the French and British interests amount to just about 49 per cent. and the Roumanian interest to 51 per cent., giving the Roumanian section of this group the controlling voice in the direction of affairs.
The production in 1920 does not show a very great improvement on that for the previous year, and the major responsibility for this rests on two causes; first, the discouragement to production occasioned by the state of the railways and the pipe-lines;, and, secondly, the strike of the workmen at the Societe Electrica of Campion, which produces 'electric current for use on the oil fields.
The total exports of petroleum during the year under review amounted to 246,000 tons, about ten times the export during 1919, but still greatly behind the average for three yearS before the war.
Northern Bus Extensions.
As a result of the energies of the Newcastle Tramways and Electricity Undertaking Bus Services, another well-populated area of mining and farming towns and villages has been linked up with Newscastle. Commencing on August. 14th, the service which previously operated between Scotswood Bridge and Crawcrook, was extended, and now meets the requirements of inhabitants of Byton, Crawc rook, Wylarn, Prudhoe, Mickley, and terminates at Bridge End, within a very short distance of Stocksfield, delightful little valley resort of Tyneside residents. The total distance now covered by the route is just nide miles, and the cost for the whole journey is is 3d. Regular services are 'maintained from 7.15 a.m, to after 10 p.m. from the Scotswood terminus, the vehicles returning by the same route. Short intermediate services are also scheduled.
This is yet another instance of the wellestablished fact that travelling facilities already created develop a trade of their own by demonstrating the transport wants of still further outlying districts. The Newcastle Tramways and Electricity Undertaking have just commenced another useful service, which should prove a boon to the farming and butchering community. On Auction Mart day (Monday of each week), they run special vehicles on the Ponteland to Newcastle
route for the benefit of these classes.
Rural Council and Road Grants.
The Renton Rural Council, at a recent meeting; decided to ask rural councils to support the following resolution which they passed, copies of which are to he forwarded to the Ministry of Transport and the local M.P. :—
" That this council strongly urges that no conditions be laid down with regard to any grant that may be made by the Ministry of Transport. on account of the highways. The council feels that the ratepayers of the district, having paid through the nose for the C10 upkeep of the roads for the convenience of the general public in past years, are entitled to a fair share of the moneys accruing from motor licences unfettered by any conditions."
Carlisle Karrier Sweeper.
A certain amount of unfounded prejudice appears to exist in Cart: le against the recently delivered liarriar sweeping machine, a complaint from shopkeepers being that the machine left dirt in the street channels. The matter was recently gone into at an inquiry held into the application for permission to borrow 42,000, the purchase price of the machine. The sanitary inspector, Mr. Hill, said the machine was doing its work very efficiently. Whilst the
makers averaged the vehicle's rate of speed at five miles per hour, with Carlisle's short streets they had been able to do 41 miles per hour, including turnings. After a shower the machine had lifted three tons in an hour and a quarter.
On behalf of the makers, Mr. Hattersly explained that the Carlisle channels were very wide, and they would have to extend the brush to get better into them.
The surveyor added that the machine would cost £1,223 per year, which would include maintenance, running costs, interest and sinking fund, petrol, oil, brushes, etc.
It was stated that, as against the cost of 22s. fid. per mile for street cleaning with horse labour, the new machine accomplished the work at an estimated cost of ..13s. 3d per mile. From a sanitary point of view, the machine was a distinct improvement. The sanitary inspector said that half-an-hour after cleaning the streets they were again littered with sweepings from the shops, and the dirty streets were due to the careless shopkeepers, etc. It was expected that a prosecution would put a stop to the nuisance, and the complaints would cease automatically.
The Yugo-Slavian Market.
A perusal Of the report just issued b the Depaitment, of Overseas Trade o the economic resources and industrit conditions of the Serb-Croat-Sloven kingdom drives home the conviction tha salvation in this, as well as in othe Balkan countries, must come throng transport. Much hasbeen done sine the end of the war to improve matter: but much remains to be done. Until th dinar improves British lorry manufsg turers will find difficulty in effectin; sales in the country. Meanwhile, Gei many, Italy, and other countries wit depreciated currencies are getting a gril on the Yugo-Slavian lorry market.
Japan Prefers Foreign Vehicles Great as has been Japan's progress the state of the country's internal trans Port has not advanced with it. Th great majority of the country roads ar absolutely impossible for lorry traffic while the streets of the cities are botl too crowded and too narrow for its effi cient use. Nevertheless, many road im provements are projected, and the num her of commercial vehicles -continues tc
grow. In December, 1919, the tota number of lorries in use in the empin was 209. Of these, 104 were registeree at Tokio. . •
Japan's facilities for lorry manulae ture are limited Most, of the ram material necessary has ,to be imported. In March, 1918, however, the Govern ment offered a bounty of £40 for eacl lorry built in the country by a native manufacturer, the specifications to be according to military requirements,.anC the minimum load one ton. The maim facturer also receives an additional 41( if the lorry is let out on hire. Buyer: also receive bounties of 420 on purchase, and 46 per annum towards upkeep fix five years. Despite these inducements. however, it is generally considered a bet• ter investment to buy the more reliable foreign vehicle.
A Glasgow Corporation report state: that 730 setts had been damaged by the haulage of three boilers, weighing about 70 tons each, from Messrs. Rowan anC Co.'s works in Elliot Street to the quayside. The town clerk has intimated that the corporation will hold the firm re• sponsible for the damage to the streets.
Ford's Freight Barges.
The Ford Motor Co. is preparing te put into operation at an early date s fleet of freight barges to transport mote; material from Detroit to the assemblinE plants in New York and others cities ir the East.. The barges, which will b: propelled by marine gas engines, will be 150 ft. in length, 20 ft, in width, an will each carry 1,000 tons of material.
Taxicabs in Calcutta.
A resolution has been moved in the Bengal Legislative Council recommend ing the Government to withhold,. for one year, that part of the report of the Taxi. cab Committee which deals with the evolution of type, horse-power, driver': seat, and luggage accommodation, ir order that owners and dealers in motol vehicles, who have already imported cars of types which have been passed during the past few years, may be safeguarded.
Belgian Tractor Trials.
The Chambre Syndic&le• Beige de Motoculture is organizing this year's tractor trials, which have the backing of the Belgian Government. They are to take place this year at Gembloux From September 24th to 27th. Entries will be received from all manufacturers or representatives in the country only on the condition that these concerns will not take part in any other similar trials in Belgium during 1921 and 1922, except by permission of the Chambre Syndica,le.-Full particulars of the trialis will be sent to all applicants who write to the secretary, 16, Rue Rembrandt, Brussels.
Pneumatics Lessen Road Wear,
The Bureau of Public Roads, U.S.A. Department • of Agriculture, has recently made a series of tests at its experimental farm, as to the exact amount of road damage that, occurs from motor lorries. It has been found by the bureau that, when a solid-tyred vehicle strikes a 1 in. obstruction in a roadway, the impact may be as high as seven times the static load—it averages about four times as heavy—whilat when pneumatic tyres are used the impact, an similar circumstances, is said to be seldom greater than one and, a quarter times the load.
• The Bureau of Public Roads stales: that, as a result of these figures, it feels safe in predicting fhat roads now being constructed will bear all loads that areexpected on them.
Bus Powers for Tramways.
Attention is being given by the Municipal Tramways Association to the question of the running of motorbuses. in association with tramways. Now it is impossible for municipal authorities to obtain' power, through the Private Legislation Commissioners, to run buses beyond their areaa.
The Tramways Association will endeavour to obtain power generally for the municipal authorities by legislation, it being felt that such powers should be securettby ail. General legislation, too, will do away with the need and expense of local application for Parliamentary powers.
Mr. Frank Samuel, acting chairman of the British Chamber of' Commerce for the Riviera, commenting on transport difficulties there, suggests that the England-Monaco cargo-boat service, exneat in 1914,, be revived. From Monaco, he says, British goods could be distributed along the whole coast by means of lorries. No doubt goods could be sent cheaper and more expeditiously this way than by the congested French railways.
The American Industry.
Automobile production in the United States for the three months ended June. 30th was 87 per cent, of the corresponding period in 1920, according to information received by the National Automobile Chamber of Commerce. The manufacturer ivith the largest production is operating at about 136 per cent, of the 1920 basis, and all others are averaging' about57 per cent., or more than double the rate for the first quarter of the year.
The Burnett Motets Tyre and Rubber Cu., of Trowbridge, have secured the services of Mr. S. J. Ingram, the, late manager of the Bristol hoose of W. and A. Bates, Ltd. Mr. Ingram is jothing Mr. Bushnell in the North, where they will jointly manage 'the company's affairs in Lancashire,. Yorkshire., Chester, and North Wales. Messrs. Bassett have an office at 79, Drewry Buildings, Water Street, Liverpool, and they hope to open shortly a depotis Mlanehester. The progress •made 'by this company is demonstrated by the fact that they have found it necessary once again to start a night shift, in order to keep pace with the orders received.
Tractors and 7-ton lorries are in demand in Algeria.
New Slough Formation.
-The Slough Lorries and Components, Ltd., have been registered with a nominal capital of £225,000 in £1 shares. The objects are to adopt an agreement with the Slough Trading Co., Ltd., and to carry on the business of manufacturers, builders, designers,. repairers and owners of motor lorries, motorcars and carriages, wagons, marine vessels, aeroplanes, airships and other vehicles, engineers, founders, electricians, machinists, etc. Further agreements are to 'be enteredAnto with R. Reader Harris and. F. Mead, giving to each, in consideration for services rendered in connection with the formation of the company, the option, -within two years, of subscribing for 25,000 shares at par. Col. G. S. Spurrier is the• first managing director. The other directors are to be appointed, by the signatories. Remuneration as from July 1st, 1921 (except managing director), is £2,000 each per annum.
An A.E.C. in New Zealand.
The original of the illustration which we reproduce on this page 'was sent to the Associated Equipment Co, Ltd., by Inglis Bros. and Co., Ltd., their agents in Wellington.
It showssan A.E.C. 4 ton lorry which was purchased by Messrs. C. and A. Octlin, of Wellingtcm, some time ago. The vehicle has recently been engaged for some weeks on end in the transportationaof timber, carrying eight loads a day, !each load carried weighing 6 tons, and the dimensions of the heaviest baulks being 50 ft. long by 10 ins. sq. The satisfaction whiah the vehicle is giving to its :laser under the burden of excessive loads is certainly a tribute to the capabilities of the A.E.C. lorry.
Transport for Stretford.
Stretford Urban District --Council has appointed a special committee to consider and report-on the best method of adopting the use of motor vehicles for local administrative purposes, and also as to the formation of a transport department. .
Transport in Syria.
According to a report on trade in Syria for the year 1920, which has just been issued by the Department of Overseas Trade, since the French occupation great attention has becm paid to road making, and, it is said, good results have been obtained. The Lebanon, especially, has a number of good driving roads, and conditions, therefore, are favourable to the running of motor vehicles in 'fact, imports of motor vehicles have been considerable during the year. American vehicles, it is said, greatly predominate.
Owing to the small carrying capacity of the Damascus Railway nrider present conditions, and to the high rates, mer. chants, even now, find it cheaper to transport goods to Damascus by road. Motor lorries and vans are also in use in Beyront itself and in the coastal region.
There is a c'eTrisidereble amount of reconstruction and development to be done in Syria by .the French, to whom the mandate has been given. The diffi
culties are great, and the complete reorganization of the country will entail a large outlay of money. With the terms of the mandate not yet definitely approved and the settlement of the country not yet completely effected, no striking developments can at once be expected, but when progress is a little more certain, there may possibly be chances for the Use of motor vehicles in greater numbers.
Demanding Driving Mirrors.
Several county and town councils have recommended that driving mirrors should be fitted to all commercial and other vehicles, and many have gone so far as to insist upon one being included as part of the equipment. before a. licence is granted. The latest authorities to make this demand are the Councils of Smethwick and Southampton.
In view of this regulation (which we have all along held to be very desirable), a neat little booklet entitled. " Avoid a Crash," which has recently been issued by Dekla., Ltd., 168-170, Hampton Street. Birmingham, will be of interest.
(12 It tells all there is to be known about Dekla mirrors, and can be obtained on writing to the company.
New Services on Old Roads.
The 1920-1921 report of the Glancestashire County Council calls attention to what it describes as " a serious feature "—which is the initiation of new omnibus routes over old roads before thq. council has been able to reconstruct them for such traffic. Such undue haste in opening up new routes depreciates roads which will take years to restore at very great. cost.
A Krupp 4-5 Tonner.
Since the war Krupps of Essen have been obliged to enter into various other fields of industry in order to keep their numerous staff employed and their workshops busy. It is, therefore, net surprising to find' that they have become interested in the motor trade, particularly in the heavy vehicle side of the industry.
They have produced a 4-5 ton vehicle, and numerous examples of this machine are. 'low in use. The vehicle incorporates a 45 h.p. four-eylindered engine, the cylinders being cast in pairs. The valves are on one side of the power unit, and are interchangeable; tbe gearbox provides four speeds forward and a reverse, and the vehicle, as our picture shows, is chain-driven. The chassis, which is built on standard lines, is, it is said, suitable for fire-engines and other municipal uses.
Central Garage Outing.
On Sunday, August 14th, the Central Garage (Luton), Ltd., invited their staff and a few guests to experience a day':, " reconditioning " at Clacton-on-Sea. The party left Luton at, 7 a.m., and were safely denesited on the parade at Clacton at 11.30 a.m. after travelling a distance of 90 miles. As i well known, the company are Cornier Car specialists, and it is natural, therefore, that a Commer Car coach was employed for the trip. The vehicle used is only two years of age, but in that period it has acted as a trustworthy friend to passengers over a distance of 100,000 miles.
Harrogate Corporation has decidete. purchase a Leyland motor fire-engine at a cost of £1,642. "
Lindsey (Lines.) County Council has ere dered two Robey steam wagons for the haulage of road material.
Swadlincote is to consider the purchase of a motor fire-engine at an estimated cost of £1,000; • PortsladeILD.C. has been granted permission to borrow £1,250 for new appliances for the fire brigade.
A 1 ton Ford motor wagon, to cost £317, is required by Sunderland Corporation Tramways Committee.
Southport Watch -Committee has licensed 12 motorbuses, which are to run from Post= to Southport daily..
• The question of purchasing a motor lorry .for the Alnwick Rural District Council has been deferred until the end of the year.
Worcestershire Cpunty Council has decided to purchase ti-5 ton steam wagon and a light petrol lorry for the highways department. •
Portsmouth Urban. District Council has secured sanction to borrow £1,250 for the provision of new appliances for the fire brigade. • Instead of continuing the use of a hand cart. for transport the Pier Committee of the Sduthend Corporation has decided to consider the advisability of purchasing or hiring a light molorvan.
There was a loss of £41,24 on the Liverpool Corporation motorbuses last year. The receipts were £46,534, but the expenditure, including interest and depreciation, came to £87;759.
Leamington Corporation hasdecided to notify the tramway company that, if existing defects are not remedied, the corporation will seek Parliamentary powers to run municipal buses.
The Holme Cult-ram U.D.C. has provided a parking ground for motor vehicles at Silloth, and it is requesting the police to ask persons in charge of such vehicles te direct, them to this ground The Ministry of Health have been asked for sanction to borrow by the following : — (1) Clacton-on-Sea. IT.D.C., £2,14'l for the purchase of a motor fireengine.; (2).Stou(port T.C., £375 for the purchase of a steam fire-engine.
A further dernonstraLion of the Sirnar tiller has been•given on the farm of Mr. B. H. Brown, of Kenton Bank Foot, Newcastle, who is the agent for this implement for the northern district. The Srmar is being very favourably reported upon in this neighbourhood.
A large party from the head offices of .J. and I. Thornyeroft arid Co., Ltd., journeyed to Basingstoke on August 13th., where they were entertained by the works staff, whom they afterwards met in a series of sporting events. The fact that the Basingstoke players were more successful these events 'is hardly surprising, in view of the facilities afforded them by the splendidly appointed 20-acre sports ground which adjoins their works at Basingstoke.
TRAM TRACK RUIN.
THE fact that tram tracks are not likely to be put in good condition for many yeai-s is brought out in the annual report of the Middlesex County Surveyor.
There are, he says, a good many unsatisfactory lengths of road in the county, due -to difficulties encountered ever sinio the war broke out, in obtaining sufficient and suitable materials even for ordinary maintenance, whilst the improved surfacing to meet the changed conditions of traffic has only been possible on a very restricted scale One of the main difficulties now in the way of improvement is the bad conchbon of many of the tramway tracks. Until these can be reconstructed—which for financial reasons is likely to he a slow process—the haunches cannot be dealt
with in a satisfactory way. The increase in traffic has rendered waterbound' macadam uneconomical and -most. difficult to maintain with any considerable
degree of satisfaction. Unfortunately, Middlesex has several miles of waterbound macadam haunches to tracks. It is general experience that such haunches are difficult to maintain if surfaced differently from the track, as the heavy traffic units always cause trouble at the dividing lines of the varying surfaces which offer unequal resistance to wear.
A counsel of pbrfection, and, indeed, of the strictest ultimate economy, would be to pave the whole of the tramway haunches with wood on reinforced concrete as and when the tracks are reconstructed. In many cases, however, it is likely to be some years before the track. reconstruction materiali?.es, and in those cases it will be found advisable to substitute slag tar macadam or some bituminous material for the water-bound haunches.
The Extent of Timber Traffic Damage.
T is estimated that it will cost over a
million pounds to bring the :‘,..iorthwribrian roads back to their pre-war condition. . During a full day's debate by the Northumberland County Council, which took place a few days ago at Newcastle, on the state of the county roads, Mr. Bean, the county surveyor, reported that the county, with its many collieries and timber-growing areas, and but very few railways, had to bear the brunt of enormous timber haulage on its roads, which, he was informed by the Ministry of Transport, was the heaviest in the country. The Ministry is paying 21 per cent. of the timber traffic road repairs'. At the beginning of April, 1921, the position of repairs to main roads was much better, hut the coal strike occurred and considerably delayed the work. The council has a great deal of work to carry out, but, owing to-financial conditions, it is impossible to get it all done at once. • At present it it stated that the'iollowing roads are not satisfactory :—. (a) About one mile in length at New York village, on the Benton and Whitley Bay main road.
(b) The coast road between Blyth mid Whitley Bay, which iS being reconstructed.
nolystone and Earsdon (from Shiremoor to Earsdon). • (d) Morpeth.and Shields (Fisher Lane portion).
All of these roads are receiving attention, and later in the year a 'few miles of the North Road (south of Alnwick) are to be repaired. The road near Carter Fell is being reconstructed, and the main road from Newcastle to Henharn and towards Carlisle has this year been greatly improved and widened.
The sum of £177,774 for roads and bridges was passed in May last, and the county surveyor has interviewed the Ministry of Transport, and a grant of about £90,000, in addition, for surface and other repairs, is expected.
Aid. Darling said that there were 190 large motor coaches licensed in the county, but these were a mere fraction of the numbers using the roads, as they came from all parts of England and Scotland. The number of licences held in the county for motors was 480 and for locomotives 263.
Aid. G. B. Bainbridge was of the opinion that there were far worse roads in other parts of the country, and said Lord Montagu had pointed out-that the present rating system was absolutely unfair to road authorities.
A member suggested that a record be kept of the persons from outside areas who used the roads, with a possible view to effecting some changes as regards financial arrangements for the maintenance of main roads generally.
No State Aid for Development.
4OTHING is to be done regarding 11 the development of rural ,transpert, as' was glibly promised. by the
• Ministry . of Reconstruction, which advocated the linking up of villages by bus and light, railway services.
For some months the Southampton. Country Council has been making repre
sentations to theMinistry .of Transport as to the inconvenience caused by the continual closure of the Basingatoke and Alton Light, Railway. and urging its reopening at an early "date. The Board of Agriculture has also been approached, but without success.
In the first place the Board of Agriculture replies that the question of fornm lating a scheme for giving financial assistance, out of public moneys, to allow of the re-opening of this light railway, has been fully investigated by the Minis try, in teitinnction with the other departments concerned,: but the Govern ment has now decided that, in the pre sent financial. circumstances, it will not he possible for it to provide money for . supporting any such schemes, and the Ministry does !not, therefore, propose to take any further action in the matter at present.
Moreoyer, the Ministry is not vet in a .position to state whether. further consideration can he given, at a later date, to the question of giving financial assistance, out of public funds, to any of the schemes -that have been put forward for
additional transport facilities. ,
In the second place, the Ministry of Transport is equally decisive, declaring its inability to make any recommendations for grants or loans for the consiruction.,,of railways or light railways owing to-the need for restricting public expenditure. Hence the question of restarting the Basingstoke and Alton Light Railway must, it would appear, be indefinitely postponed.
What a C-hester Census Revealed, SOME very interesting figures were presented at the Ministry of Transport inquiry at Chester into the application by the Chester Corporation for an order to be made limiting the speed of mechanically propelled vehicles, exceed-. ing two tons in weight, unladen, to six miles an houron Grosvenor Road, between the City walls and Dingle Bridge.
The Motor Legislation Committee, the Motor Trade Association, the Commit. cial Motor .Users Association, the Liverpool Motor Club, and the Cheshire Automobile Club were represented.
On the first three days of August a -traffic census was taken of vehicles using the road, and the following results were recorded :—
It was .stated that the settlement of the embankment on the ROOdee side of the road was partly due to the' vibritionS.sef up by: heavy road traffic, and, before carrying:out any permanent. Works, it was proposed as a first remedy to enfsarce a temporary speed limit of 6 m.p.h. It .is not intended to have a permanent speed limit on this stretch of road. The retaining wall on the western side of the embankment,' for a length of 50 yards, has shown signs of movement in the upper half, and had been thrust out of alignment a distance of 5 ins at the maximum point. The vibrations set up by heavy vehicles using the road, especially the paved portion, at speed, caused additional thrust on the wall, add, as this was dry built, tended to cause failure arid collapse.
'The C.M.U.A. thought, that, although a. temporary speed limit was reasonable, it was not wise to select a precise speed
of -six miles art hour; They suggested
eight. The Motor Trade Association
did not oppose the application, because it was of a temporary nature, butpointed out that it was unusual for an applica tion to be made restricting the speed of one class of traffic only. It was suggested that conspicuous notices be placed at the approaches to Grosvenor_ Road.