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from the best markets renders individual action practically impossible.
That English farmers have capacity for progress is shown by the growing use of cream separators and other modern appliances, which are however too costly for general adoption on small holdings.
The same men who have the ability to discover and make use of the best markets have usually the capacity of producing an article of the best quality, and from these combined causes will get 2d. to 4d. per
lb. more for butter than their neighbours. These men, who may be called the elite of their class, would consequently gain the least, if anything, from co-operative creameries, by which their neighbours' produce would become equal in quality to and realize as much as their own. It is not therefore surprising that they have taken little interest in the movement.
It may not be out of place to touch upon one or two practical difficulties which will no doubt be easily over
For instance, in many parts of England only a small percentage of the land is devoted to cow-keeping. In those parts, the creameries would necessarily be comparatively far apart, and the delivering of the milk would be expensive and troublesome, unless some system of co-operation in local carriage were adopted.
Reference has been made to difference in the quality of butter produced. This arises mainly from different treatment in the dairy or from difference of feed.
It may be assumed that in the proposed creameries the treatment will be uniformly good, whereas at present it is in most cases inferior, and in not a few abominably bad.
With regard to the effects of difference in feed, I am principally acquainted with districts devoted to mixed
farming. In those districts the quality of butter from the same farm will vary greatly according as the cows graze varies in different fields.
It may be that in essentially dairying districts there is less diversity of feed, and the milk is more nearly of one quality. Be that as it may, the varying quality of the milk, owing to difference in feed, is a difficulty which co-operative creameries in England would have to cope with.
GEO. BEKEN, Fellow.
(F.) Surveyors and land agents and others interested in the subject of agricultural depression who have given any thought to co-operation, and have read the Right Hon. Horace Plunkett's Paper, must feel deeply indebted to him for his most practical aid in illustrating this most difficult subject, and for setting forth the object lesson of what has been done of late years in Ireland and on the continent.
My observation does not lead me to think the English farmers averse to combining for the purposes
of buying and selling at greater advantage, but they want thoroughly convincing that it would be to their advantage to combine before trying the co-operation.
An ably managed English Agricultural Mutual Selfhelp Society with a branch or branches in as many counties as would join together, under good central organisation, would I believe vastly help English agriculture in the struggle against low prices and foreign competition, by reducing the expense of production and enabling them to compete successfully with foreigners who have obtained so large a share of the wholesale trade of the country.
Under well organised combination, butter, for instance, could be made uniform in quality, and all produce could be well packed for market, and in the bulk required both to suit wholesale purchasers and to reduce railway rates.
The farmers near towns and good railway service are, of course, the least in need of combination. Where combination for dairy work seems most needed is where the carrier is the salesman of the weekly consignment of butter of various qualities, for which a miserable price is often given to the producer, though some of it may be very good. There is no uniformity,
, and consequently wholesale buyers go where they can get an identical sample in bulk (say a ton of one brand) and one that can be relied upon to be maintained. This is what the foreigner has accomplished, and by so doing holds the market.
Farmers should take care in any co-operative society that may be formed that they hold the shares.
The first necessity in any locality where it has occurred to a few that combination would be of good service, appears to me to be to get a good organising secretary to gather members together—a man with ample time at his disposal and fairly paid. Everything will depend upon the management, whether it be a small or a large concern.
HENRY DONNE, Fellow.
On Mr. Simms' Paper entitled “ London, an
(“ Transactions," Vol. XXIX. pp. 337-375.)
We perhaps scarcely realise the enormous advance which London architecture has made since the end of the war with Napoleon. The enthusiasm 70 years ago over miserable abortions of so-called architecture in stucco, stone, and brick (but principally the former) fills one with surprise in these days.
To take an instance. Shepherd's Metropolitan Improvements (1827) takes note of and illustrates carefully the stucco terraces and villas just erected round Regent's Park, and praises the use of Roman cement (introduced by Mr. Wyatt) with an enthusiasm worthy of a better
In fact, the glories of Regent Street, the grandeur of the Egyptian Hall and the Colosseum, are lauded as architectural triumphs, and even the St. Pancras Workhouse declared to be a palatial structure! Even James Elmes, M.R.I.A., in the work quoted, “drops into” rhapsody in addressing the king, thus :-“The splendid " and useful improvements that have been effected in “ this metropolis, under your Majesty's auspices, will “ render the name of George the Fourth as illustrious in “the British annals as that of Augustus in those of “ Rome.” Few of us would be bold enough to write thus, even of the great Victorian age.
We can enter into the feelings of indignation with which the illustrious Pugin gibbeted the “one idea“ Roman-Cement man," and understand the revulsion of feeling which came in with the Gothic revival the apostles of which did so much for honest building and
the national architecture of England. We should see to it that the swing of the pendulum, which always seems to change the styles in which we build, does not land us in pettiness, panelling, and puerility in the way of overlaid and meaningless surface ornament, while we are pluming ourselves on our catholicity of taste, and superiority to antiquarianism. As to the advance in
. cleanliness, there is much to rejoice at. How few dwellings, built even 30 years ago at £70 rental, have a fitted bathroom, which every little house at £30 rental is expected to provide at the present date!
I agree with Mr. Blashill's remarks as to the state of our streets; especially the filthy state of those with the abominable wood pavements, along which it is impossible to walk on a wet day without being bespattered from head to foot, to say nothing of the coating of grit and triturated horse-droppings with which house and shop-front (besides the articles on sale within) are covered. Bond Street in the west, and Chancery Lane in the east, are well known typical instances out of scores which disgrace our municipal management. Hose and jet, twice or thrice a day, would be necessary to obviate this annoyance until solid paving is restored.
As to the savages of North Kensington, and the death rate of 66 per 1,000, which Mr. Wheeler contrasted with the 10 per 1,000 elsewhere, may we not hope that a quarter of a century's board school work will do something to remedy this state of things.
The greatest difficulty, however, appears to be the “Smoke and Fog Nuisance" which will not be resolved in this century at all events. Although no “appreciation
appreciation ” can be complete which omits mention of the fine new thoroughfares which we owe for the most part to the late Metropolitan Board of