FATAL FLYING ACCIDENT AT RUGBY.
The death took place at the Brookfield Nursing Home this (Tuesday) morning of Mr H N Van Duzer, an officer in the American Flying Corps, as the result of injuries received in an aeroplane accident on Sunday.
The deceased officer and another aviator had been flying over the town at a very low altitude, and at about 5.30, while they were over the Eastlands Estate, something apparently went wrong with Mr Van Duzers’ engine, which caused the machine to nose dive and crash to earth. Mr Van Duzer received shocking injuries to the head, arms and legs, and was conveyed to the Brookfield Nursing Home in an unconscious condition, from which he never rallied.
LOCAL WAR NOTES.
Pte W H Linnell, jun, R.E, son of Mr W H LINNELL, has been wounded in the leg.
Mr J A Middleton, son of Mr & Mrs Middleton, of Watford, near Rugby, has recently been gazetted Second-Lieutenant in the M.G Corps, after serving three and a-half years in Gallipoli and Palestine.
The death from wounds is reported of Lieut H C Boycott, Coldstreams, the International hockey full back. Boycott won many prizes at lawn tennis tournaments, was a brilliant cricketer, and a smart golfer, being the first secretary of the Northamptonshire Golf Club.
Sergt H Collins, son of Mrs Collins, 73 New Street, New Bilton, has been transferred from his interment camp at Wittenberg in Germany to Holland. Sergt Collins was taken prisoner of war in the early days, and had spent four Christmases in Germany. Food parcels have been regularly sent to him through the Rugby Prisoners of War Help Committee.
News has been received that Pte A W Bottrill, Coldstream Guards was killed in action on March 18th. Pte Bottrill, whose parents reside at 94 Bridget Street, was an old St. Matthew’s boy. He went to the front in the first month of the War, and was in the retreat from Mons and many of the subsequent heavy engagements, being badly wounded on two occasions. The Captain, writing to his friends, remarks : He has been all through the war without once going home, except on leave, which surely is a magnificent record. There are too few of our original Expeditionary force left to tell their glorious story, and now there is yet another gone.
THE GREAT GERMAN OFFENSIVE.
Since Friday last week the British Armies on the Western Front have been fighting with traditional valour and endurance against the stupendous forces launched against them by the Germans in making their promised offensive movement. In the course of three or four days of the bitterest fighting, unprecedented in the annals of war, our front line troops had to give way in front of vastly superior numbers, but have systematically retired on prepared defences. The result is, we are on an average of 15 miles farther back on a frontage of 50 miles than when the attack commenced. There has never been in the history of the War a battle of such continued intensity, and the reason for this is very clear. There has not been one wave attack, but at least three, carried out on the German side by three relays of armies. The usual breathing space which has hitherto followed the most intense period of battle has been denied to our troops, for the simple reason that the German has no sooner exhausted on army than he has put in another, the fresh troops passing through the forces which have been exhausted and carrying on the battle without loss of time.
We are not for the moment interested in German losses. They have (remarks the well-informed London correspondent of the “ Birmingham Daily Post ”) undoubtedly been colossal. We cannot even console ourselves with the effect which those losses will have upon the people of Germany when they are revealed. The only thing which interests us is the question : “ Will the German succeed in breaking the British Army and destroying our power to continue the War ?” It is treason of the worst kind to rave about a British defeat. We are not defeated because we have given ground. We cannot be defeated until our Armies are broken. The German is defeated on the day the official despatch admits that he is checked and held. The German advance is perceptibly slowing, the intensely active front is becoming perceptibly restricted. Of the 96 divisions on the British front 73 have already been identified. Considerably more than a third of all the German’s strength in France is at Present in motion against our Armies, and that enormous force has been met, checked, and decimated by less than a third of the British Army. The people who draw comparisons between this offensive and the offensive against Italy or the big push against Russia are wide of the mark. In point of morale and armament of the defender there is no comparison. So far as reserves and readiness to meet the attack are concerned there is no comparison.
Thursday morning’s news was to the effect that the Allies are holding the line, and the fighting was more in our favour.
RUGBY FOOD CONTROL COMMITTEE.
At a meeting held on Thursday in last week there were present : Mr T A Wise (chairman), Mr H Tarbox (vice- chairman), Mrs Dewar, Mrs Shelley, Mrs Townsend, Mrs Peet, Messrs A Appleby, G H Cooke, C Gay, W A Stevenson, J Cripps, J H Meller, T A Smart, A Humphrey, R Griffin, and A T Watson.
Messrs Bluemel were given permission to purchase sugar for use in their factory canteen, which, it was said supplied meals to 300 workpeople daily.
The B.T.H Company applied for permission to purchase 40 lbs of sugar for the month ending April 20th for use as a lubricant for drawing wire in their lamp factory.—Mr Stevenson enquired how the company had obtained their sugar for this purpose in the past ?—The Executive Officer replied that they had been taking it from the supply allowed for their canteen, but he had informed them that this must not be done in the future.—Mr Stevenson enquired if the company would still be allowed the same quantity for their canteen ?—Mr Mellor said the past they had been drawing 3lbs per week from the canteen for this purpose, but the difficulty experienced in getting carbon for arc lamps had caused a great run on electric lamps, and an increased quantity of drawn wire was required, with the result that they were now using about 10lbs of per week for this purpose.—The permission was granted.
On the application of the L & N-W Railway Company, it was decided to allow the licensee of the Royal Oak, Brandon, to keep a quantity of tinned meat in stock for the use of fogmen.
A letter was read from the Divisional Commissioner with reference to the new wholesale price for milk, and suggesting co-operation between districts where similar conditions are uniformity of price. The Executive Officer read the price list as under :—April, 1s 3d ; May, 1s ; June, 1s ; July, ls 2d ; August, 1s 3d ; September, 1s 3d—average ls 2¾d.—In reply to a question, the Executive Officer stated that the resolution of the committee agreeing to the price remaining at 1s 9d per gallon till the end of April would have no effect, as it had not been confirmed by the Divisional Commissioner.—In reply to Mr Stevenson, it was stated that local committees had no control over wholesale prices.—The matter was referred to the Rationing Committee.
The Finance Committee reported that they had received £216 3s 1d from the Ministry of Food, which would meet all expenses incurred by the late Urban Committee up to December 31st. A cheque had been sent to the Urban Council for this amount, and it was decided to apply to the appointing authorities for a further grant.
SUGAR FOR JAM.
OUTLINES OF DISTRIBUTION SCHEME.
Following on the statement made by Lord Rhondda in the House of Lords with regard to the distribution of sugar for jam-making, the following announcement is made by the Sugar Department of the Ministry of Food :—
Forms of application can be obtained on and after March 23rd at the offices of the Local Food Control Committees, and must be returned on or before April 4th. Applications will considered only when they are made by persons actually growing the fruit which they wish to preserve. The form of application will require the applicant to state, among other things, the number of persons rationed for sugar as members of his household and the amount of fruit which he is likely to have available for preserving. The extent to which such applications can be met will be determined by the Director of Sugar Distribution in conjunction with the Local Food Committees.
Two classes of permit will be issued to applicants, one for soft fruit available between June 8th and July 31st, and the other for hard fruit available between August 1st and September 30th. “ Soft fruit ” will be taken to mean any fruits normally ready for preserving before the end of July, and in this category rhubarb may be included. “ Hard fruit ” will be taken to mean any fruits ready for preserving after July 31st, and in any area where vegetable marrows are usually preserved the local committee may in its discretion include them also in this category.
It has been decided that in no case shall the total amount of sugar for making jam for home consumption exceed 10lbs per head of the household. There will be many people, however, who will have fruit in sufficient quantities to enable them to use more sugar than this, and in these cases they will be invited to state what weight of fruit they are prepared to convert into jam on the understanding that they are to place the jam so made at the disposal of the local food committees at prices not exceeding the current wholesale prices.
It is most important that the application forms should returned on or before April 4th.
DISAPPOINTMENT FOR WEDDING PARTY.
Considerable amusement was caused at a meeting of the Rugby Food Control Committee on Thursday afternoon last week when a letter was read from a Craven Road grocer to the effect that a customer had ordered a 12-lb ham from him for a wedding which was to take place in few months’ time. He asked for permission to sell the ham, and keep it in stock until the event took place.—The Chairman (Mr T A Wise), in reply to Mr Mellor, stated that if the customer bought the ham he could possibly be prosecuted for hoarding. A person was not allowed go into a shop and buy what he wanted, and arrange with the trader to keep it in his warehouse until it was wanted, instead of the customer keeping it himself. That would get over the hoarding order at once : and, if they consented to this, it would open the door very wide.—Mr Cooke : If it means getting excess food we shall all be getting married soon.—The committee instructed the Executive Officer to reply that thy did not approve of the arrangement.
So many of these Institutes have now been started in Warwickshire, and have been so warmly received, that a County Federation has been formed in order to link them up together, and to co-ordinate the work generally. The first Federation meeting was held at Leamington last week, when a large number of delegates from the different villages where institutes have been successfully started attended. Lady Isabel Margesson, (hon secretary of the Worcestershire Federation), speaking on behalf of the London Federation Committee, explained the scheme. In her preliminary remarks Lady Isabel laid special emphasis on the revival of rural industries, and on the development of the whole of the rural life of the country. She pointed out that, although the great object of that development was Food Production, it was not restricted to that most important endeavour. The village institutes were the response of the women of the countrywide to the call to do their utmost for their own neighbourhood. Force and strength came from acting and meeting together, and results showed that every institute had its own character and individuality. Women’s institutes were NOT to interfere with, but to co-ordinate, the activities of a place. The Government concerned itself more and more with the homes and families of the land, and women’s institutes provided a homely organisation that could receive what the Government wished to give.
Several of the secretaries present spoke of the useful work done by the institutes, and Mrs Miller (Coundon, Coventry), gave an interesting account of a scheme in hand for promoting the toy-making industry.
The meeting, having unanimously decided to form a Federation for Warwickshire, proceeded to elect its officers and executive committee. Mrs Fielden (Kineton) was duly elected vice-president, the Mayoress of Leamington chairman, and Miss Bryson hon secretary.
The eight members of the committee proposed and elected were : Lady Likeston, Lady Nelson, the Mayoress, Mrs Fielden, Mrs Miller, Miss Fortescue, Miss Sargeaunt, and Miss Bryson.
It should be noted that anyone desirous of starting a women’s institute should apply to the War Agricultural Committee, Warwick. Once started, the institute is handed over to the care of the County Federation.
BATCHELOR.—In memory of Pte. THOMAS BATCHELOR, of the 5th Royal Berks, who died of wounds in Germany, December 25, 1917.
“ God knows how we shall miss him,
And He counts the tears we shed,
And whispers, ‘ Hush, he only sleeps ;
Thy brother is not dead.’”
—Sadly missed by his loving Sisters Lizzie, Nellie, Ida, Hetty, and Beatie.
CLARKE.—In ever loving memory of Pte P. CLARKE, 31st T.R., who died in the Military Hospital at Dover, March 29th, 1917.
“ The flowers we place upon his grave,
May wither and decay ;
But the love we bear for him,
Will never fade away.”
—From father, mother, brothers, and Sisters at Kilsby.
TOMPKINS.—In memory of PRIVATE WILLIAM TOMPKINS, 24th T.R., dearly-loved youngest son of the late A. J. and Mrs Tompkins, Barby, died in Fulham Military Hospital, March 25th, 1917, aged 19 years.
“ Nobly he answered duty’s call,
And for his country gave his all.
A year has passed ; our hearts still sore,
Day by day we miss him more.
His welcome smile, his dear sweet face,
Never on earth can we replace.
—Sadly missed by his loving Mother, Brother, & Sister.