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-Officially Recognized by The Commercial Motor Users Association.
The Authority on all forms of Motor Transport. Largest Circulation.
I Conducted by EDMUND DANGERFIELD. Editor: EDWARD S. SHRAPNELL-SMITH.
The Cost of County Roads: The Incidence of Rating in Sporting Areas.
The County Councils Association of Scotland is responsible for the table of road statistics which we reproduce on page 36. These costs and assessments concern the year ended the 15th May, 1912, which appears to he the latest date for which such data are available. They have been included in Vol. XIX of County Council (Scotland) Cases and Statistics," a copy of which has been brought to our notice. In 'publishing these records for that part of Britain which lies ayont the Tweed, we feel that, in the absence of similar collated information with reference to England and Wales, the claims, grievances and views of many poor county areas, i.e., those with no industrial and low residential assessments, will be, in a measure, rendered self-evident to heavy motortraffic interests.
There are, as always, two sides to the ease. From the road-user's side, we have to point out that the apparent injustice of, for example, road rates of
Is. 8.264d. and 25. 2d. in the i. for Nairn and Sutherland, respectively, is not. so great as it seems. The rateable values are low, and comparativelysmall annual expenditure per mile of road furnishes
high figure when expressed as so much in the
it is not to be forgotten, however, and this is one point from our side, that the grants in rebel from Imperial funds, which are not stated, also work out proportionally. We may have more to write about this before long. For the present, we reproduce the official returns of outgo and levy, as they are purported to have affected the respective county districts. To our numerous readers in Scotland, who may be threatened with dismay on their seeing alleged road rates of thes.e magnitudes, we offer the provisional consolation that the figures are gross and not net. No credit has been allowed for receipts in aid. We have, none -the less, -to admit the fc-n.ce of the claims of some Scottish counties for exceptional consideration.
The Preliminaries for the 1914 Parade.
Other than by those who have actually been engaged in the organization of gatherings in any way resembling the C.M.U.A. annual Parades, it. is but little realized that the amount of preparatory work for which they call is very large indeed. The fact that the necessity for such early-dated preliminaries exists must have been borne home to those who have, through various circumstances, failed in their endeavours to organize similar displays in this (tountry.
Those who are witnesses of these great annual gatherings of service machines, as is natural, seldom pause to consider the intrinsic difficulties which have to be surmounted many months before the actual vehiclee enter the Parade ground. There is, of course, no reason why such people should know of the advarice•care that is taken by the Committee and by the permanent officials, in order to ensure the smooth working of the arrangements on the actual day. It is no small task to organize systematic means for the inspection and examination of many hundreds of machines and their drivers, with a view to the ultimate awarding of a very considerable number of prizes, satisfactorily and equitably. However, here we are, very nearly eight months in advance of the actual date fixed for the 1914 C.M.U.A. Parade, confronted with the approved preliminary regulations for that event. The C.M.U.A. Committee, amongst its many other activities, has already started to plan for the Parade which will be held on the 1st of June next year. Elsewhere in this issue we give publicity to the official communique concerning the preliminary arrangements for the Eighth Annual Parade. We also reproduce one of the new entry forms which are, as a matter of fact, issued in duplicate. The Committee has, we are in a position to know, with great care weighed the pros and consof the inevitable crop of suggestionswhieh entrants, competitors and others less directly concerned in the arrangements, invariably send in for its consideration after an
event which is of such interest, to so many. The " after-the-Parade " reports, which both the Inspecting Engineer and the Chief Marshal were asked to prepare, have also been turned to account. Following the 1913 Parade, the suggestions•for altered regulations, etc., were fewer than usual, a fact which was direct evidence of the satisfactory stage to which the organization has now proceeded. As the final result, however, of the deliberations of the Committee, we already find certain noteworthy alterations embodied in these preliminary arrangements. Other modifications which will be adopted concern the Whit-Monday organization itself ; they will not need to be disclosed until a later date.
We now draw the special attention of our readers to the decision that for the 1914 Parade each machine shall be examined on the Parade ground, above and beyond the examination which will be carried out. by the inspecting engineer as on previous occasions. This is a wise reversion and one which is calculated to be gratifying to driver competitors in particular. Owners will no doubt welcome the successful efforts which have been made to simplify the entry form. The number of questions contained therein has been reduced, and those which remain have been consolidated.
it is anticipated that there will be particularly keen competition in the team section next year. Up
till 1912, steam had had matters very nearly all its own way in this section, but last year Cannon and Gaze, Ltd., won the cup with a mixed team of Foden steamers and Hallford petrol wagons. Even at this early date we learn that some of the fleets of petrol machines, which by that time will have compiled greatly increased mileages, will seriously challenge stearn's hold upon TIIR COMMERCIAL MOTOR clip. But the steam-wagon owners may be relied upon to put up a good fight to retain it for yet another year.