EDITORIAL – Meeting of Rural Sanitary Authorities
Accreditation The Redcar and Saltburn-by-the-Sea Gazette 04/05/1877.
RURAL SANITARY AUTHORITIES.
At the meeting of the Rural Sanitary Authorities convene to meet Mr. Culley, the Medical Officer of the Local Government Board, in Middlesbrough all, on the 25th ult., Considerable difference of opinion prevailed as to the feasibility of Mr. Colley’s scheme. This is, as our readers are already aware, a proposal to an amalgamated the Unions, of Middlesbrough, Guisborough, and Stokesley under one Medical Officer, at a salary of £700 per annum, with the object of securing a more thorough sanitary supervision of the district. Middlesbrough scenes to have treated the proposal with silent content – not even sending a deputation to the meeting, although held in their Union Boardroom – Stokesley strongly objected, Guisborough only being in favour of the scheme. With reference to the Cleveland watering-places, Coatham and Saltburn-by-the-Sea are at present included in the Rural District of Guisborough, and have the efficient medical supervision of Dr. Keith, Redcar, having Dr. Bennett as its Medical Officer of Health. At the time when Dr. Keith was appointed Medical Officer of the Guisborough Rural Sanitary Authority, the Local Board of Redcar declined to join them in their appointment of a Medical officer. The reason was a very obvious one. Dr. Bennett had for several years performed the duties of Medical Officer of Redcar without any salary whatever, and when the question of pay was mooted it was unanimously decided that the gentleman who had rendered gratuities services to the town was fairly entitled to be the first paid Medical Officer. There does not at present seen any valid reason for disturbing that arrangement: Redcar, is in a very healthy condition, it’s drainage is efficient, the water excellent and abundant, and with the exception of some old buildings that ought to be declared unfit for human habitation, there is little to find fault with. There appears to be a strong reluctance on the part of the owners of old cottages to pull down and rebuild them, but the Board has the power to deal summarily and effectually with refractory owners: these powers should be exercised and the nuisance would seize. The advantage urged by Mr. Culley are chiefly comprised under the heads of the thorough supervision and skewed by an independent officer, having no local practice, and the cheapness of his administration – one half of such officer’s salary being paid by the Local Government Board. Everything else being equal, these are undoubtedly important advantages, but the Rural Cemetery Authority of Guisborough (including Saltburn-by-the-Sea and Coatham) already possesses them, and it is very questionable whether the large area proposed by Mr. Culley should be efficiently worked by one officer. Many persons are of opinion that the scheme would not work, and that eventually and assistant would have to be engaged, which would add considerably to the expense. Mr. Culley depreciated any decision being come to by the meeting, but urged the representatives to lay the case fully before their respective Authorities. The report of Messrs. Duff, Crabtree, and Coulson , who represented Redcar, will be laid before the Board at their monthly meeting to be held on Monday next (07/05), and the Board will have the advantage of hearing from them the account of Mr.. Culley’s proposal.
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