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From Our Files: party politics, in court for work lateness, and New Forest rat-running

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ADDRESSING members of Lymington and District Men’s Conservative club at the annual meeting on Friday of last week, Mr W. D. Braithwaite, Chairman of New Forest Conservative Association, said that whilst the Conservative Party had remained a loyal member of a coalition that on the whole had worked well, the Party was taking stock of the positions and problems which would have to be faced in the post-war years.

Socialist leaders, and the Labour organisation at by-elections were also observing the political truce, but among the rank and file of extreme left views propaganda was being fervently carried on especially among young people working in factories and it must be carefully watched. Conservatives could give an effective lead in the social and other questions which had to be tackled.

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AT Southampton Police Court recently a man appeared on adjourned summonses for absenting himself from work without reasonable excuse on June 26th and July 24th, and for being persistently late for work between April 7th and August 6th. The offences had been admitted by him, and the hearing adjourned to see if there was an improvement in his timekeeping.

The labour officer of the firm said since the last hearing on October 26th defendant was half-an-hour late on four occasions, his excuse being that he lost his train at Brockenhurst.

Informing the defendant that the case would be adjourned for a further month to see how he got on in the meantime, the chairman expressed the hope that he would pull himself together and see that the lapses did not occur.

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NEW FOREST Rural District Council on Monday adopted a report of an ARP Standing Advisory Conference dealing with the public apathy towards precautions against possible use of gas by the enemy. The Conference unanimously agreed that this Conference of Headwardens in the New Forest Rural District expresses its alarm and anxiety.

Since the Government decided that it was not necessary for the public to carry their respirators, the subject appears to have been neglected by the Government, as the members of the conference have not observed any press announcements, Ministry of Information notices or notices by radio or cinema to keep the public well informed of the necessity to maintain their respirators in an efficient condition.

The Voluntary Wardens’ Service find it impossible to carry out efficiently their periodical inspection of all gas respirators owing to the attitude of the public towards the wardens on this matter, and the limited time at the disposal of the voluntary wardens to do the detailed work required.


DON’T join the “brain drain” was the plea made by the Mayor of Christchurch, Alderman Mrs Dorothy Baker, to apprentices at the Signals Research and Development Establishment, Highcliffe, at their annual prize-giving on Friday in last week.

Pleaded the Mayor “Don’t go away from England. Think of that word, not used so much but so important — patriotism. Think of your country and put all your brains into bringing it to the front.”

She went on “You know this country invents lots of things but other people pick them up and develop them. Let’s develop them ourselves. I do so much believe in ‘waving the flag’. I am proud of my country and proud of being English. Don’t, as soon as you are qualified, go off to other countries — which will pay you better — but remain here and help to build up our own country,” added the Mayor.

The apprentices received further encouragement from the Ministry of Technology’s head of engineering staff, Mr L. R. Beesly, who presented the prizes in the presence of many parents. SRDE, he said, was well equipped to give excellent training in a first class environment and in first class surroundings.

The establishment and its forebears have a tradition of over 60 years and throughout that time it has always been in the forefront of new technical development,” he went on.

Britain’s need for craftsmen, technicians, engineers and scientists continued to be great, yet the sources were small. A British engineering apprenticeship was an accepted passport not only in this country but throughout the world.

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SIR – On November 14th I was moved by a letter in the National Press from Lord Montagu expressing concern for the disruption of the flora and fauna of the New Forest. I consider, along with many others, that the time has come for some concern to be expressed for the residents of this area whose lives are disrupted every weekend throughout the summer by the traffic jammed roads en route to Beaulieu.

We have read of “pressures on the Forest” – surely there has been no greater cause of pressure than the “gimmicks” deemed necessary to support the “stately home”.

Lord Montagu does not have to waste sympathy on the deer in their peaceful forest inclosures, they would not choose to face the exhaust laden air and the din of the roads to Beaulieu, residents have no option.


A WARNING that major roadworks on the A31 will lead to more lorries rat-running through Bransgore and Sopley was given at the New Forest Environmental Services Committee, when the villages’ heavy vehicle problem came under scrutiny.

Councillors were told that there is local concern about the number of lorries going through Bransgore and Sopley. Some of them use the Avon Causeway and go through the villages to join the A35 at the Cat and Fiddle, and New Forest highway officers believe this problem will not be solved until the industrial area in the northern part of Bournemouth International Airport has direct access on to the A338 spur road.

The Committee agreed to press for a spur road link, but Coun. Peter Baker drew attention to an imminent worsening of the lorry problem. He explained that work was about to start on a road widening and flyover scheme at the Ashley Heath roundabout on the A31, and he forecast that traffic going from Southampton to the Bournemouth / Poole area would divert off the A31 on to the A35 to avoid delays. Drivers would be tempted to rat-run through Bransgore and Sopley to get to Poole via the Avon Causeway and West Parley, he said.

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A THREE-YEAR-OLD boy, using a cigarette lighter whilst playing with his five-year-old brother, admitted to having started a fire at their home in Queen Street, Lymington, at eight on Wednesday morning. Two fire appliances, with firemen using breathing apparatus, tackled the blaze in the flat in which they lived with their mother.

The mother was asleep until woken by her two sons, and she removed them to the safety of their own room before opening the window and shouting for help, before trying to tackle the fire with water. Realising, the fire was getting out of control, she closed the fire door which contained the blaze to the one room.

An 11-year-old neighbour was about to leave for school when she saw flames in the flat, and immediately alerted her mother, who summoned the fire brigade. They and adjoining occupants were evacuated until the flat was made safe.

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THIS week the New Forest Foxhounds came under fire from anti-hunt protestors after hounds ran across a banned area at Bolderwood.

Ken James, of the New Forest Animal Protection Group and League Against Cruel Sports, called on the Forestry Commission to suspend the hunt’s licence after hounds chased a fox through a sensitive area around Bolderwood deer sanctuary on Saturday.

In a letter to the commission’s range and recreation manager Roger Brake, he claimed: “the field riders blocked Bolderwood Ornamental Drive for several minutes as hounds rampaged through Bolderwood grounds, apparently out of control of the huntsmen.”

He added that the field riders were ordered away from the area by the duty keeper and it took about 20 minutes for the hounds to be rounded up. A loose hound was also nearly run over by a car during the incident. Mr James said the events were a breach of the terms of the permission to hunt.

Hunt joint master Capt. Simon Clarke said a number of foxes had been disturbed at the same time which was why the hounds were taken in different directions. He stressed that not at any time did the hounds go across the grazing land reserved for the deer, and despite being close, was sure that they did not disturb any deer.

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