Symud i'r prif gynnwys
Cuddio Rhestr Erthyglau

15 erthygl ar y dudalen hon



OUR LONDON CORRESPONDENT. After the whirl of pleasure and of pageance through which London has latterly been passing, in connection with the celebration of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee, the necessary cessation of the festivities has cowie upon us as a distinct relief. That is not because we were wearied of tli m in the ordin&ry sense, but because tired uature would not allow us to pursue them further without overstraining all our powers of physical endurance. The abiding comfort, however, is the recollection of how well everything went off' in the capital of the Empire. For this most satisfactory state of things praise is well deserved by the police, and her Majesty, in very marked fashion, has shown her pleasure at the splendid way in which the whole constabulary force of London acted on the occasion. But just as much praise is de- served by the people, for the enormous crowds which thronged the thoroughfares, day after day and night after night during Diamond Jubilee week, behaved with an orderliness and displayed a good-tempered patience almost beyond the reach of praise. The central pageant-the Royal procession to and from St. Paul's, and the special service before the cathe- dral-was, in short, not only a triumph of organisation, but of the love of order and of the law-abiding spirit which characterise our people as a whole and foreign observers were, perhaps, more lastingly impressed by the latter feature than by anything else in the vast demonstration. The review of the troops on Laffan's Plain at Aldershot, which was arranged for Thursday, brought to a close the official portion of the Diamond Jubilee celebrations; but it was exceeded in popular interest and proof of imperial power by the great Naval Review at Spithead, which had taken place some days previously. For there was gathered in the Solent between Portsmouth and the Isle of Wight the most potent fleet the world has ever seen assembled at any one point; and those who were privileged to be present on the occasion will never be able to forget the impression it created. Happily for its full success, the weather was very favourable during the progress of the review proper, the sun shining brightly upon the assembled ships, and there being just enough breeze to make the bunting dance gaily in the afternoon light. It was only towards the end of the reception given by the Prince of Wales on board the Royal yacht Victoria and Albert to the flag officers of our own fleet, and the officers of foreign navies present, that a heavy thunderstorm suddenly broke which temporarily did something to spoil the proceed- ings. But the illumination of the ships made up for much and a more beautiful scene than wis presented when the magnificent array of buttle-ships of all sizes lit up cannot be imagined even by the keenest lover of the picturesque. The social chronicler who wishes to give some idea of all the entertainments that have been seen in London in connection with the Diamond Jubilee has no enviable task, for these have been so many and so various that they require not the pen of one, but of several, in order that they may receive justice. The chief of all these functions, of course, was the Garden Party at Buckingham Palace, but the enter- tainments given at Grosvenor House by the Duke of Westminster, at Devonshire House by the Lord President of the Council, and at Lansdowne House by the Secretary for War, were of a splendour which will not be forgotten by tbe guests. Not the least interesting, how- I ever, was the ball given in Gray's Inn Hall by the Treasurer and Benchers of that I Inn of Court. It is said that no dance had been held in this picturesque hall since Queen Elizabeth danoed therein just four centuries since; and, therefore, the occasion was a specially fitting celebration of the long sove- reignty of our own venerable monarch. Pro- bably the younger among the dancers cared little at the moment for the historic associa- tions of the place; but the fact that they promenaded in the very gardens that the great Sir Francis Bacon laid out, is one that perha ps in the future they will pleasurably recall. One reform which will affect many thousands may be the outcome of an incidental conse- quence of the recent festivities in the metro- polis. During the great week most of the omnibuses along the line of the Royal route raiaed their fares-usually to six times the ordinary amount, but occasionally to twelve times; and this caused the more discontent because the railway and tramway companies are restrained by law from doing. so. The plea of the omnibus proprietors was that, as their vehicles moved only with considerable slowness through the crowds, they would have been heavy losers, if no more than the customary fares had been charged but, whatever the value of that plea in the peculiar nature of the circumstances, the point to which the London public generally appears to take keenest objec- tion is that the omnibuses can raise their fares at any moment, without let or hindrance, pro- vided only that they put up a notice to that effect inside the vehicle a power which obviously could sometimes be unscrupulously exercised. Battersea-park has come very much to the fore among fashionable folk within the last two or three years because of the facilities it affords for bicycling, and its attractions pro- mise to be increased by an improvement which the London Council proposes shortly to under- take. It appears that the park has a river boundary extending for about three-quarters of a mile, but that the wall which separates land from water is a very inferior erection that needs constant patching. That being so, the Parks Committee of the Council has decided that something better ought to be substituted, and it is seeking authority to construct a per- manent granite embankment. Astbeestimated Cost of this work will be nearly 244,000, it is evident that a good erection is intended; but itl may be hoped that the mistake will not be repeated which was made by the Council a few months ago when it proposed to embank the Thames at Chelsea Reach, and when the plans would have so spoiled the picturesque- ness of tbat portion of the river that Pariia- ment had no alternative but their rejection. It is not often in these times that an im-: portant railway company has occasion to change its name, but that has this week corned to pass with the Manchester, Sheffield, and Lin- colnshire, which from Thursday will be known by all men as the Great Central. This is because of the rapid progress which is being made with the extension to London, -which is hoped to be completed next year, and with the opening of which the old appellation would have been inadequate. It was at first thought that the name could most fittingly be altered only by a single word, and that much trouble would be avoided by calling the system the Manchester, Sheffield, and London. which would have thus presorved the well known abbreviation for the line- the initials "M. S. and L." But, upon full consideration, it was felt that this would not quite convey the full idea embodied in the change, and not the less so because the ten dency of railway nomenclature has been toward a broad territorial name rather than one limited by towns. Thus, we have the North- Western and the South-Western, the Midland^ and the Great Northern, the Groat Western and the Great Eastern: and henceforward to these we must add the Great Central. When we talk of the volunteers, it is not many among us who remember that, although the present excellent force dates only from 1859, there still exist some remnants of earlier bodies of civilian soldiers. Wo have in London more than one instance of this and notably the Honourable Artillery Uompany, which was privileged to furnish a special guard of honour at the Mansion House on Diamond Jubilee Day, in recognition of the fact that it is the oldest of all such corps, dating back considerably more than two centuries. But there is another London volunteer corps, not so well known, which has had the opportunity within the past few days of celebrating its centenary. The first parade was held, just a hundred years ago, of the old corps of JBloomsbury Volunteers, raised, as were so many others, during the last prolonged war between Great Britain and France and the flags of that corps are now in possession of the present one, which has rightly struck a medal in honour of its unique celebra- tion. Every man in the corps now possesses one of these, which is an honour and a pride to them all. R,



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