BIRTHS. JONEs.-At Allt-cerrig, Merthyr Cynog, May 25, the wife of Mr. Jones of a daughter. TiaoxAs.-At Gelli-gilloges, near Brecon, May 20, the wife of Mr. Thomas, farmer, of a daughter. MARRIAGES. DA.VIEs-PRICE.-At the parish church, Talgarth, May 29, by the Rev. J. Griffiths, curate, Mr. Stephen Davies, police-officer, stationed at Talybont, to Miss Mary Price, of IGasbury. EVANS—MORGAN.—At Llanguerig, May 29, by the Rev. John Evans, Mr. Lewis Evans, of Troedrhylas, to Misa Margaret Morgan, of Tynllewchwedd parish. DEATHS. BLANCHE.—At Hay, May 28, after a short illness, Mrs. Elizabeth Blanche, housekeeper to Mr. Lyde, surgeon, aged 62 years. 0 PHMLM.-AT Gloucester-place, London, May 26, Sir Thomas Phillips, Q.C., of the Inner Temple, aged 65 years. POWELL.-At Llanelly, Breconshire, May 26, Edith, daughter of Mr. William Powell, aged 13 months. WILLIAMS.-At the residence of Mr. Dance, at Tal- garth, May 29, Mr. John Williams, of Dinas, in the parish of Talgarth, aged 73 years.
NOTICE. MERTHYR, TALGAETH, and BUILTH intelligence un- avoidably held over owing to pressure on our space. J. J. P. and X. Y. Z. have not given us their names (in confidence) as our rule requires, and therefore no further notice can be taken of their communications.
SUMMARY OF THE WEEK. By the acceptance, on the part of Mr. Disraeli, of Mr. Hodgkinson's amendment, and his claim- ing it as one of his own "ideas," it was sup- posed that the "irresistible" compounder had been demolished, and that that vexed question was finally disposed of. Mr. Disraeli, however, undertook to give effect to Mr. Hodgkinson's motion in his own way, and this he has done, or attempted to do, in a highly characteristic manner. By the first clause he did what was asked of him, and by the succeeding ones he, in great measure, nullified the concession, still leaving it optional with the landlord and his tenant as to whether they will continue to com- pound. If such a clause had been allowed to pass it would have had much the same effect as the plan originally proposed by the Government —it would have placed tenants, to a great degree, at the mercy of their landlords. As Mr. Mill very pointedly put it at the meeting of the National Reform Union,—" That is what we have been afraid of all along, because it is to the landlord's interest that he should not have a vote if he cannot vote and compound too. It is to the landlord's interest, and it is to the interest of vestries, local boards, and other authorities in parishes that he should compound, and therefore it is to their interest that he should not have a vote unless he can compound too. Well, if this is the case, observe what will happen. The land- lord, it being his interest that such householders should not have a vote, and his consent being necessary, he will not consent unless it is made worth his while; and we know what that means." By some it was thought that Mr. Disraeli made the concession without due consideration of its effects, and afterwards, influenced by his col- leagues, introduced the clauses framed so as to endeavour to meet the difficulties both ways. The Chancellor has also been accused of a breach of faith, and on Monday evening he took the opportunity of referring, with astonishment, to the language which had been used out of doors, and contended that the Government had faith- fully redeemed their pledge, and believed that the clauses had been framed so as to meet the wishes of the House. He explained that he had understood that the amendment of Mr. Childers was adopted by Mr. Hodgkinson as a part of his own, and that the House concurred with it. Other explanations followed by hon. members, and eventually Mr. Hodgkinson withdrew his amendment, of which he had again given notice, on ascertaining the character of the clauses to be introduced by the Chancellor, and the new clause of the latter, enacting that within Parliamentary boroughs no owner shall be rated instead of the occupier, except in the case of houses wholly let out in apartments, was carried, the third and fourth clauses, giving power to compound, with the consent of the owner and occupier, being withdrawn by Mr. Disraeli. Mr. Kinglake had proposed that the county franchise should be reduced from £ 15 rating, as proposed by the Government, to £ 10; but it was stated by the right hon. gentleman that the Government could not consent to this reduction. Sir E. Dering's proposition, however, which about splits the difference, was not objected to, and a X 12 county franchise was agreed to, the qualifying premises to consist of lands or tenements. This will be about equal to a £ 14 rental, which was the Government proposition last year, when the Tories stood out for a S20 rental! Whatever may be the motive of the concessions made by the Government, we can only congratulate ourselves that their measure has been-to use a phrase more expressive than elegant—" licked into shape," and that we are still to have household suffrage, though restricted by personal payment of rates and a twelvemonth's residence. The announcement that the Fenian Burke was to be hanged excited a good deal of feeling in many quarters, and a large and influential depu- tation of Members of Parliament, representing all shades of party feeling, waited upon the First Lord of the Treasury, at his private residence, on Saturday, in order to pray that mercy might be extended to the convicted man. There were several speakers on the occasion, and it was urged upon the noble lord that the execution of Burke would lower this country to the civilization of Russia, that his death would raise him to the rank of a martyr, that it would give rise to the idea that we spared the Fenians in Canada, where blood was actually shed, for fear of the Americans, and that it would give offence to the Canadians, who would feel that less attention was paid to the invasion of their homes than to a wretched attempt at rebellion like the disturbances in Ireland. The Premier, in replying to the depu- tation, did not hold out very much hope of the interference proving successful. He said it was very painful to him to discuss the question; but he pointed out that there was no analogy between the circumstances of the war in America and this attempt at rebellion; and that, therefore, no argument could be drawn from the fact that no life was taken there. The decision come to in reference to the condemned had been after the deepest consideration, and after consultation with the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, the Judges, and others. He, however, promised that if a petition were presented to Government, he would lay it before the Cabinet. Notwithstanding this un- promising answer, we are happy to find that the influence brought to bear on the Government has had the desired effect, and in both Houses on Monday night it was announced, amidst much cheering, that her Majesty had been pleased, under the advice of her ministers, to express her wish that the sentence of capital punishment in- curred by the convict Burke be commuted, the hope and belief being further expressed that her Majesty would never repent this exercise of her prerogative. Of course the same clemency will be extended to the-5 other Fenians under sentence of death. The protest received by the Bishop of Salis- bury, at Bridport, is not the only one that has been presented to him, a similar one having come from the clergy and laity of the .deanery of Dorchester. In his acknowledgment of its receipt, the Bishop says, when he asked his brethren to hear his whole charge with calm and patient and dutiful consideration, he did not expect to receive, within an hour and a half of his addressing a part of it to them, an expression of opinion about it from any of them. The Rev. H. Moules, in replying on behalf of himself and others who signed the protest, says it was prompt, but not a hasty act, nor the result of impatience, but the result of previous consideration, and a deep consciousness of a sense of duty, not merely to his lordship, but to the people committed to his ministerial charge, and to his Master in heaven. Although he utterly rej ectecl his lordship's claim for the clergy of regal, judicial, or super- natural powers, he claimed to be an ambassador of Christ. Having read the whole of the charge, he declared the doctrines upheld therein to be directly opposed to the Articles, to the Litany, and the Holy Scriptures. Sir Roderick Murchison still entertains the belief that Dr. Livingstone is alive, and at the meeting of the Royal Geographical Society, on Monday night, he entered at length into his reasons for holding that opinion. It seems that Arab merchants have arrived from the neigh- bourhood of the scene of the reported murder, long after the event was said to have occurred, and brought intelligence to the Sultan .of Zanzibar, to the effect that Livingstone had passed safely into a friendly country, to the westward; and there was also a report that a white man had made his way to Lake Tanganyika. The man Moosa is the only one on whose state- ments the report rested, and his testimony is strongly impugned on account of his having given different versions of the story. Sir Roderick said he felt sure the society and the public would approve the course he had recommended, which was cordially supported by the Council and by her Majesty's Government, to send out a boating expedition to Lake Nyassa. Mr. Young, who was connected with the Zambesi expedition, and is to have the command of this one, also stated that Moosa was unworthy of belief, and, as an indication of his character, observed that when some beef had been stolen from the white men, Moosa accompanied him through the village in search of it, but it was afterwards discovered in his own bag The construction of the boat is being rapidly proceeded with at Chatham dock- yard. It is to be 30 feet in length, and 8 feet in breadth, from gunwale to gunwale, and will weigh rather over a ton. It will be of great strength, admits of being taken to pieces, and can easily be carried across country. It is an- ticipated that everything will be ready for the departure of the expedition by the 9th proximo. The master tailors have decidedly set their faces against the attempts which have been made to settle the dispute between themselves and the men by arbitration. This is much to be regretted, and we think that whatever of right they may have had on their side, they are clearly wrong in so steadily refusing to listen to the counsel which has been tendered them. On the other hand, the men have always expressed themselves favourable to the matter being freely discussed, and left to an independent outsider, and the public are more disposed to sympathise with those who act in this moderate way. At a recent meeting of the masters' association a report was read in which it was stated that they firmly believed that the antagonism had arisen, not from any dissatisfac- tion on the part of the workmen themselves, but solely at the instigation of their leaders, and against their own wishes. Entire confidence was also expressed in their being able successfully to resist the unwarrantable demands of the trade. By speakers it was alleged that the "log" was nothing but a sham, and was put forward as an instrument of dictation and intimidation. Reso- lutions were passed expressing approval in the course that had been adopted, and the belief that the difficulty had been brought about by the agitation of the leaders of the trades unions. These resolutions were directly afterwards re- ceived by the operatives' committee, who sat for that purpose. They at once telegraphed to the various committees throughout the country in- structions to redouble their exertions, and obtain additional subscriptions, as it was possible the area of the strike would have to be enlarged. As a consequence of this, we suppose, the military tailors, 500 in number, have given their employers notice that they will take no more work, after they have finished what they have in hand, unless the new log is agreed to. An aggregate meeting is to be held for the purpose of refuting the statements of the masters, that the strike was not the desire of the men generally, but that they were forced to it by the committee. It has been asked numberless times why it is that the men do not co-operate, having so much means at command. The writer of a letter in the Pall Mall Gazette states that they have already done so, and opened a place of business close to Regent-street, the clothes he is then wearing being made there. Doubtless there will be many more such co-operative shops shortly established. Those who take an interest in matters con- nected with fishing—and the number of such persons in this neighbourhood is large-will probably have attentively read the case heard at the Crickhowell Petty Sessions, which we fully reported last week, and in which Mr. E. D. Batt, a surgeon of Abergavenny, and coroner of the county of Monmouth, was charged with having an unclean salmon in his possession. Although the evidence was of a conflicting nature as to how far the defendant was acquainted with the fact that it was an old fish till after it was killed, he was fined S2 and costs. This week we publish an account of an inquiry by the Clyro magistrates into a charge of a similar nature brought against Mr. James Williams—also (singularly enough) a coroner and Mr. John Atcherley Jebb, two gentlemen belonging to Brecon. The circumstances of the latter case are certainly peculiar. The two gentlemen in question go out for the purpose of fishing, and get out of the train at Boughrood station, each carrying a portion of the fishing tackle. Some hours later they again come to the station, within two or three minutes of each other; the foremost goes into the guard's van to change his clothes, while the other gets into a first-class carriage. The latter has in his possession a salmon which is found to be unclean, and, on being interrogated, he says it is his own. I At the first blush of the thing, it is, we admit, natural to connect the interest of these two gentlemen, especially as there is but one rod and basket between them. Nevertheless, it is perfectly consistent with possibilities, not to speak of probabilities, that, although they went out together, one of them should on his return have in his possession a fish of which the other might know nothing. Perhaps it is scarcely reasonable to think that a Board of Conservators should take such a view of the matter, and we find both these gentlemen are summoned for having the salmon in their possession, and in due course the case is heard. And here we feel bound to remark upon the conduct of the Chair- man of the Clyro Petty Sessions. Although a member of the Board of Conservators, he still retained his seat on the Bench, and heard the case. We do not question his right to do this but we do, most decidedly, question its propriety. We would give the worthy magistrate every credit for desiring to be impartial in his judg- ment, but we do say also, most emphatically, that, notwithstanding his desire to the contrary, his position on the Board of Conservators would naturally incline him to a conviction in any case of the kind that may be brought before him. At all events, if he persists in keeping his position on the Bench during the hearing of such a case, he lays himself open to remark. We think it would have been in much better taste if the example of Captain Hotchkis, at the Crickhowell Petty Sessions, had been followed. Being a member of the Board of Conservators, the gallant Captain thought it his duty to withdraw from the Bench during the hearing of the charge against Mr. Batt. Another point upon which we wish to remark is that both the magistrates and the solicitor for the prosecution refused to allow the cases to be heard separately. The only thing in point urged against this course by the 0 prosecution was that, in cases where one article was stolen by several persons, the evidence against all the prisoners was taken at the same time. We imagine that may be according to circum- stances. Anyhow the magistrates have the power to consent to an application of the kind named, especially if it will tend to further the ends of justice. We suppose it cannot be the desire of the Bench, nor yet of the Board of Conservators, to convict innocent persons. In this case, however, it seems that there was an evident desire to convict Mr. Williams, since the solicitor for the prosecution would only withdraw the summons against Mr Jebb provided Mr Williams pleaded guilty, notwithstanding that the solicitor for the defence stated that he had nothing to do with the fish, and offered to plead guilty on behalf of Mr. Jebb. As to whether the decision of the magistrates was justified by the evidence before them, we will not take upon ourselves to say. Those of our readers who take sufficient interest in such matters to wade through the details will be enabled to judge of this for themselves; but it appears to us very strongly that the perusal of the two cases alluded to cannot fail to make every unprejudiced person feel some amount of doubt respecting the state of the law in reference to unclean salmon. In both cases there seems to have been great difficulty in deciding whether the fish were unseason- able. In the first case, several persons who were not tyros in the gentle art" were at first inclined to think that the fish was a clean and wholesome one from its appearance, and in both cases the same con- clusion was come to from the manner in which it played If there is this difficulty in distinguishing the good from the bad, some allowance ought surely to be made, and the law not strained to its uttermost. We think also that the provision of the Act by which such fish are to be returned to the water is mostly useless. The statements in these cases went to show that the fish would only have died in the water. In the one case it was nearly dead when brought to the bank, and in the other it was in such -a state as to be easily pulled to the bank with a gaff hook. What good, therefore, is the returning such a fish to the water ?
"IT's NEVER Too LATE TO MEND.The Corpora. tion seem to havp become impressed with the truth of tt is motto, and have begun to "mend their ways." It certainly was t'me. for, as we stated last week, the pitching of the roads has been m a most discI" ditable state for- a long time. We hope that as far as is practicable the repairs may be com.,Iete, and lessen the gieat wear and tear 'hat all kinds of vehicles must have been subject to of late. GRAND BALL AT THE BARRACKS.—On Thursday evening a grand hall was given at the barracks, by Lieutenant, Colonel Bridgwater and other officers. The officers' mess-room, in which it was held, was beautitully decorated for the occasion, and an excel- lent supper, with other refreshments, were prepared in the adjoining rooms. All the officers were present, and a very large number of the gentry of the town and neighbourhood, as well as from the surrounding counties of Glamorgan, Monmouth, and Radnor. The ball commenced abou' nine o'clock, and was kept up until an advanced hour in the morning. The names of those who were present will be given next week. BRECON AND MERTHYR RAILWAY.-68 miles open. Traffic for week ending May 19, 1867:— Passengers, parcels, &c f459 1 7 Goods and live stock f.1015 16 10 Total £ 1474 18 5 L21 13s. lOd. per mile per week. Corresponding week last year, 64 miles open:— Passengers, parcels, &c f,500 13 8 Goods and live stock £ 964 2 4 Total £ 1464 16 4 £ 22 17s. 9d. per mile per week. Increase I EIO 2 5 Aggregate from 1st January, 1867 £ 23113 11 4 Ditto ditto 1866 £ 23462 3 7 Decrease. jE348 12 2 THE HALF-HOLIDAY MOVEMENT.—We are very glad to perceive that the principal shopkeepers have consented to the request made by their assistants to close at an early hour one day in the week. The following announcement has been largely circulated throughout the town :The public are respee fully informed that we, the undersigned, have unanimously agreed to close our respective establishments every Wednesday, at four o'clock, p.m., on and afier June 5th. Signed, William Matthews, David Jones, J. Edwards and Co., Henry Davies, John Morgan and Co., W. S. Bass, D. F. Evans, Rees Jones, Roberts and Watkeys, Mrs. H. C. Rich, David Morgan. R. T. Evms, John Jones, Thomas Jones, William Evans, Henry Phillips, and J. Isaacs." NEATH AND BRECON RAILWAY.—This line, of which we have previously given detailed particulars, will be opened for passenger traffic on Monday next, June 3rd. By reference to the time-bills which have been published, we find that on week-Hays there wili be hrpe trains each way, leaving Brecon at 8. 10 a.m., 12.30 p.m., and 5.40 p m, and Neath at 8 30 a m., 11.5 a.m., and 3.20 o.m., all of wh'ch are 1st, 2nd, and 3rd class. An hour aDd twenty minutes i- allowed for the journey. There are no Sunday trains. The line is stated to be the shortest and most (iirectroute between North and South Wales and the North of England and the trains are arranged with evident, consideration for the convenience of travellers passing op to th- Brecon and Merthyr, Mid-Wales, Great Western, and London a* d North Western Railways. The line will "rove a great public convenience, and we trust will be beneficial to our town. As we have before stated, the station at Mount-street will be used as the joint station for the Brecon and Merthyr and Mid-Wales Railways as well as the Neath and Brecon line, and this arrange- ment has given the greatest satisfaction to the inhabi- tants generally. DEATH OF SIR THOMAS PHILLIPS, KNT., Q.C.—By the demise of this distinguished barrister, which is announced in our obituary this week, the cause of education has lost a staunch supporter, and a fervent as well as powerful advocate The deceased gentle- man was the son of Thomas Phillips, Esq., of Llan- ellen House, Abergavenny; was. born in 1801, and called to the Bar by the Inner Temple in 1842. He was knighted in 1840, for the services he rendered, as Mayor of Newport (Mon.), in suppressing the Chartist riots which occurred in that town in the previous year, and in which he was wounded. He was at the time of his death Chairman of the Society of Arts, Deputy-Chairman of Quarter Sessions and Deputy- Lieutenant of Monmouthshire, a Governor of the Corporation of the Sons of the Clergy, and a Governor of King's College, London besides which he held several offices of minor importance, and to the dis- charge of his multitudinous duties he brought a well-balanced mind, coupled with great activity and industry He will be long remembered with feelings of gratitude by the ratepayers of the county of Monmouth, for the watchful care over their interests that he invariably exercised in the capacity of a magistrate of that county, from the duties of which (notwithstanding the many other pressing dmands upon his time) he was rarely absent. He was a Liberal in politics, and died unmarried. NEW NATIONAL SCHOOL.—We hear that arrange- ments are in progress for erecting a new Boys' National School and Master's House. This step has been necessitated in consequence of the very dilapi- dated condition of the present schoolroom, which was erected so far back as 1809, and which is in so bad a state that the Committee of Council on Education have threatened to withdraw their aid unless some improvement is made. The Marquis Camden has generously given a very beautiful site near the Priory Church, and on this spot the erection will take place. The plans were prepared by Mr. F. Kempson, of Hereford; and the style of the building will be the Early English, and in character with the Priory Church. It will be built of Priory stone, and will have a very ornamental appearance. The schoolroom will be about 58 ft. by 18 ft., height 14 ft.; and the class-room 18 ft. by 12 ft.; and these will be well lighted with five windows. There will also be a bell turret. Under the same roof as the school there will be a convenient house for the master. There were four tenders for the erection :—Messrs. W. Williams, Llanfaes, £ 1,363; J. Griffiths, Watton, £ 1,155; Thos. Price, XI,050 and Rees Price, Llanfaes, X973. The latter tender was accepted, subject to certain con- ditions, and it is expected that operations will shortly be commenced. It is anticipated that the building fund will be aided by grants from Government, from the Archidiaconal Education Board, and the National Society for the Promotion of Education. Amongst the subscriptions already promised are the following —Howel Gwyn, Esq M.P., j650 the Bishop of St. David's, £ 20 Rev. Herbert Williams, 12o; the Dean of Llandaff, X 10 the Ven. the Archdeacon of Brecon, ZCIO; Rev. Garnons Williams, £ 10; David Thomas, Esq., X5 5s. Evan Thomas, Esq., 15 5s. Hon. God- frey Morgan, M.P., £ 5 John Lloyd, Esq., ze5; Mr. Aneurin George, 13. Other subscriptions will be thankfully received by the Rev. Herbert Williams.
BRECON BOARD OF GUARDIANS. The usual meeting of this Board was held on Satur- day morning, at th? Union. W. Perrott, Esq., pre- side,o, and there were also present Messrs. Thomas Evans, St. iviary William Edwards, Vennyfach Thos. Ferrar, Llanddew Thos. Williams, Modrydd William Davies, Llanfrynach; John Griffiths and John Phillips, Llandefalley; David Price, Llangasty Talyllyn David Downes, Llanddetty; James Powell, Cray; James Probert, St. David Thomas Smith, ditto; John Davies, Llandefailog fach; Frederick Watkins, Christ Collespe; Philip Edwards, St. John T. S. Cornish, Llanspyddid, and J. Powell, Aberyscir. VAGRANTS. It appeared that there had been as many as 99 vagrants relieved. The greater part of these were stated to be sailers. RELIEVING OFFICER'S REMUNERATION. Mr. T. Evans said they used 10 give their former relieving officer X6 per annum, but they had now put that duty on their piespnt officer without any remune- ration. He thought this was rather hard upon him and the Board could hardly expect a man to attend to his duties so well as when he received some pay. He would therefore propose that they give Mr. Williams Y,4 per annum for his. duties as relieving officer. Mr. P. Edwards seconded the motion, which was carried unanimously. RELIEF. The following is the amount of the relief given in the weeks ending May 18th and 25th :-Brpcknock- shire, in money, zC32 19s. 9d. in kind, £2 10s. 4d. total, zC35 10s. Id. and £ 29 8s. 3d. In Llangorse, in money, E23.0s. 6d. in kind, 15". 8d. total, X23 16s 2d. and X20 3s 6d. In Defynock, zC30 lis 6d and £26 3s. 6d. THE MASTER'S JOURNAL. The Master reported that an inmate named Sarah Vaughan had left the Union, leaving her two children chargeable to it. She had absconded in her Union clothes, but these had been sent back. Some conver- sation took place in reference to her case, and it was determined to take proceedings against her. A man named Thomas Davies applied for permission to take his nephews, two children, five and seven years of age, out of the house. The Board, however, con- sidered that, as they would have the benefit of the school while in the Union, they had better remain there, and refused the application. It was reported that there had been one birth in the house, one admission, and one discharged, leaving 79 remaining-. The cost of maintenance per head had been 2s. 9d. THE ALTERATIONS. Mr. W. Williams applied for permission to use the water from the pump connected with the Union while carrying out the alterations to the Workhouse and Infirmary. It was stated that the well was a good one, and the Master did not remember its ever being dry. The required permission was therefore accorded, on condition that it be kept and left in repair, and the use of the water discontinued if it should be found to run short. THE PORTER. The present porter was called in, and offered to resign his post if the Guardians thought it best. He, however, wished their decision postponed for a fort- night, that he might have the doctor's decision in reterence to the sight of his eyes, and his request was complied with. The Board then proceeded with the relief business.
PHILHARMONIC SOCIETY'S CONCERT. The members of this society made their first ap- pearance before the public in their collective capacity on Wednesday evening, at the Town Hall. The society having been established but a short time, we feel bound to compliment the members on the general efficiency displayed by them at this, their first concert, in the rendering of a somewhat long, but well-selected and admirably-arranged programme, under the able conductorship of Mr. Townshend Smith, of Hereford. Combined with considerable musical skill and profici- ency, was an evident appreciation of the various authors from whose compositions selections were made, and we have no doubt that the society will be enabled to effect that which it endeavours to do, viz., improve the music of the neighbourhood, and that in time, and with practice, which is a cardinal virtue in music, it will rank high amongst similar societies in the country. Their first effort has been made on behalf of the 1st Breconshire Volunteer Corps, to whose funds the proceeds will be given. Considering that this was the object of the concert, we were some- what surprised that the audience was not larger. The room was nevertheless tolerably well filled. The back of the platform had been nicely decorated with ban- ners, in the centre being the motto of the corps, "Gwell augan na chywelydd," "Better death than shame," surrounded by what may be termed a trophy of bayonets, the whole presenting a pretty appearance. Before speaking of the programme, we must be allowed to observe that the enjoyment by the company of the first few pieces was somewhat marred by a number of persons arriving late, and making their way to the front seats during the performance of these pieces. Whatever of etiquette there may be in being late, we beg to say that it is neither respectful nor considerate, either to the performers or to the audience, so to disturb them, and we trust that on future occasions this laxity of good manners may not be again apparent. The programme appropriately opened with the madrigal, Soldiers, brave and gallant be (G. G. Gastoldi), which, though marked by some indecision at the commencement, was otherwise well sung, and at once put the audience in accord with the vocalists. To this followed a trio, Voga, Voga" (Campana), taken part in by Miss North, Miss A. North, and Miss E. North, the rendering of which was very warmly applauded. A part song, by Macfarren, Orpheus with his Lute," came next in order. The piece is somewhat descriptive in its character, and it was given with appropriate expression, eliciting a decided encore, which was responded to An agree- able variation followed in the shape of a pianoforte solo, by Miss Malet, the selection being a fantasia on Oberon," by Favarger. In the execution of the piece the performer showed a. thorough acquaintance with it, and her facile and delicate manipulation brought out its beauty as well as the fine tone of the instrument. The conclusion of the performance was greeted with very decided tokens of approval. Miss North then sang a pretty composition, The Wood- nymph's Call" (L. Williams), and received an encore, in responding to which she partly repeated the song, giving it with even better effect, the Rev. Mr. Hoskens acting as accompanyist. One of Rossini's compo- sitions, "La Carita," came next, opening with a chorus, and followed by solos for first and second soprano voices, to which justice was done. Mr. G. Townshend Smith, the conductor, sang a song descriptive of the beauty of The wild, wild Rose," and its associations, the rendering of which was most effective, and a repetition being demanded, a song of a patriotic character was substituted. We hope we may not be considered to make an invidious distinc- tion, if we are inclined to pronounce the duet, Una SeraD'Amore" (Campana), sung by Miss Malet and Miss F. Malet, as the gem of the first part. The melody is sweet and flowing, and the voices of the vocalists harmonised nicely throughout, the rendering of the piece creating quite a furore, and it had to be repeated. The first part concluded with an excerpt from Handel's Judas Maccabceus, Arm, arm, ye Brave." The opening recitative and solo was taken by the Rev. T. B. Hosken, but we think it was giveli with scarcely sufficient energy and quickness, while the chorus was not taken up with the readiness and decision we could have wished to see. It was, how- ever, very well received. After a short interval, the second part opened with Rossini's Carnovale," a cheerful composition, and partly of an antiphonal character, which was exceed- ingly well rendered, and commended itself to the audience. Mrs. Hosken was warmly encored in her interpretation of The Nightingale's Trill," and partially repeated it. "The Victoria Valse," ad- mirably played by Miss Scott and Miss Malet, was followed by one of Mendelssohn's descriptive romances, entitled, Oh, Fly with Me," in which is detailed the unhappy fate of a youth and maid, who fled from home unknown to father and mother. The music and words were appropriately rendered, the cadence being well attended to, and the piece was warmly received. Mr. Hosken was very successful in the humorous song, "Keep Your Powder Dry," which he was obliged to repeat; and the same may be said of the laughable duet, When a Little Farm we Keep (Mazzinghi), in which he and Mrs. Hosken took part, and which quite convulsed the audience with laughter. Private Henshaw exhibited much ability in his solo on the cornet-although we have heard him to better advan- tage-and he was also honoured with an encore. The same compliment was received by Mr. Townshend Smith for his rendering of the song, "Act Like a Man," which was an excellent piece of vocalisation. In the March of the Men of Harlech, two harps were introduced, and were played by Miss Hughes and Miss North. It was, however, by no means the best sung piece of the evening, and needed much more spirit thrown into it, in order to make it in keeping with its martial spirit. Before the National Anthem was sung, Captain P. Lloyd thanked the performers for their kindness, and in coming forward on behalf of the corps, and in affording them so great a treat, express- ing his conviction that on the next occasion there would be a much larger attendance. The Rev. Mr. Hosken briefly acknowledged the compliment, and the National Anthem brought the proceedings to a close.
THE NEATH AND BRECON RAILWAY. The Bill for authorizing the directors of the Neath and Brecon Railway to acquire certain lands at and near Swansea, came before a committee of the House of Lords, of whom the Duke of Devonshire was chair- man, on Monday afternoon, when its merits were fully discussed. Mr. Vernon Harcourt, Q.C., and Mr. Gadsden, were coumel for the promoteri (agent, Mr. B.ll). For the Llanelly Railway and Dock Company, who petitioned against the Bill, Mr. Hope Scott, Q.C., Mr. Michael appeared (agents, Messrs. Dixon and Co.), and for the Great Western Company, who also opposed, Mr. Merewether, Q.C., and Mr. Burke, Q.C., were retained (agents, Messrs. Sherwood, Grubbe, and Co.) Mr. Harcourt stated the case of the promoters. He referred first of all to the position of the Neath and Brecon line, and said that by the Swansea Vale and Neath and Brecon Junction Railway Act of 1864, an obligation was imposed on the Company to run trains and carry traffic to and from Swansea over the railways of the Swansea Vale and Neath and Brecon Junction and Swansea Vale Railway Companies, and by the same Act those companies and the Company were respectively authorised to enter into working and traffic agreements. By an Act of 1866, the com- pany had acquired the Swansea Vale and Neath and Brecon Junction Railway and it became expedient that accommodation should be provided at and near the shipping places in Swansea Harbour for the traffic on the company's railway and the rai!way communi- cating therewith, and that the Company should be authorised to acquire for those purposes certain lands described and also that provision should be made for the transfer to the Company of the Oystermoutb railway or tramroad, and of a portion of the Brecon Forest tramway as described. The present Bill sought for power to create new shares for raising the following sums :—1, for the acquisition of the land and foreshore No, 1, by the 16th section of this Act authorized to be acquired, any sum not exceeding £ 75,000; 2. for the acquisition of the lands No. 2, by the same section authorised to be acquired, any sum not exceeding X30,000 for the purposes authorized by section 17, any sum not exceeding £ 30,000 and for the proposal authorized by section 18 any sum not exceeding £ 15,000. The new shares were not to vest till 20 per cent. was paid up. Section 16 is as follows:—"Subject to the provisions of the Act, the Company may t.y agreement acquire, enter upon, use, and appropriate to the purposes of their undertaking all or any of the lands following (that is to say), No. 1, certain lands and foreshore in the town, parish, and franchise of Swansea extending from the west pier in Swansea harbour, along the south-east side of the south- dock, and the north-west side of Swansea bay to Black Pitt, which lands belon- to, or are reputed to belong to, and are now in the occupation of John Dickson; 2. certain lands in the town, parish, and franchise of Swansea, bounded on the east by the river Tawe, on the south- west by the half-tide basin at Swansea, and on the north and north-west by the low level railway and lands belonging to the Swansea Harbour Trustees, which lands are now held on lease and occupied by the said John Dickson." Clause 17 seeks that the Company, with the authority of three-fourths of the votes of their shareholders, may agree with the owner or owners for the time being of the Oyster- mouth Railway or tramroad for the purchase by a lease to the company of the Oystermouth Railwav or tramroad, and all the property belonging thereto, and clause 18 gives power to agree for transfer to the company of a portion of Brecon forest tramway. The Company, after the transfer, was to maintain, regulate with, and use all or any part or parts thereof and the works connected therewith, and may demand and take tolls, rates, and charges thereon, not exceeding the tolls, rates, or charges authorized to be taken on the railway of the company. The land which it was proposed to take was originally the pro- perty of the Duke of Beaufort, and had been sold to Mr. Dickson, who was willing to part with it for the interests of the Company. Mr. Harcourt then called the attention of their Lordships to the petitions against the Bill, and argued that the Great Western and the Llanelly Company had clearly, as had been decided in the House of Commons, no locus standi to appear against them, except as regarded running powers, the Great Western would not be affected by the Bill, as the acquisition of the piece of land in question could not be injurious to them, as was alleged. He contended that as the Great Western did not give the Neath and Brecon proper accomoda- tion at Swansea, the Great Western had no right to complain against their acquiring land on which to establish it for themselves. The petition of the Llanelly Railway he also regarded as futile; it alleg, d that by the acquisition of the Oystermouth tramway, the Neath and Brecon line would be enabled to com- pete against them as far as the mineral traffic was concerned. This was a most singular allegation, because the Oystermouth was an old established line, whereas the Llanelly Company were new comers, and it was with regard to them the old story of the wolf and the lamb. In respect to the acquisition of the land by the Neath and Brecon Company, it was evi- dent that the Llanelly Company could have interest in that. All they could say was, -don't let the owner part with it now, because at some future time we shall be unable to acquire it, and therefore we shall be pre- vented from extending our works in th-it direction. Mr. Harcourt then raised the question of locus standi, which h- discussed at considerable length. Mr. Merewether was heard in support of the locus standi of the Great Western Company, who he said objected to the promoters acquiring the land alluded to, because, if they were permitted to acquire such land, they would hereafter corne with more weight to Pal liament to ask for running powers, which hitherto they had been refused. Mr. Michael addressed the Committee in support of the locus standi of the Llanelly Company, who asked to be beard, first in respect of the piece of land in question, their contention being that if such land were to get into possession of a hostile company it would be ve *y much to their injury, and secondly, in respect of the Oystermouth tramway, the acquisition of which by the promoters would cause a division of traffic from the Llanelly Company. Mr. Harcourt replied, after which the Committee intimated that they would give their decision on the following morning. On Tuesday, the committee said that the question raised by M". Harcourt did not in the;r opinion prevent either the Great Western or the Llanelly companies from being heard against the Bill. Evidence was then called on the part of the promo- ters of the Bill. Mr John Dickson deposed that he was the contractor of the Neath and Brecon Railway, and was ihe largest shareholder in the company was the holder of the Brecon Forest tramway and other properties in the neighbourhood, some of which were required for the purposes of the railway, and decidedly for the accom- modation of the district. (Witness pointed out the properties referred to, and also the position of the railway undertakings at the Swansea termini.) The land required between the south dock and the bay was for terminal purposes of the Neath and Brecon line; was also the proprietor of the Oystermouth tramway the Great Western Railway Company had not the facility for giving accommodation at the south dock for the purposes of the Neath and Brecon Railway as was now absolutely required the tramway was constructed under the Act of 1804, and this he pur- posed to sell to the Neath and Brecon company it would be used principally as a collecting medium from the wharves, the timber yards, and other places in connection with the low levels the only connection which the Llanelly railway now had with the tramway was by sufferance they had no parliamentary rights or powers over it, and no authorized junctions what- ever. By Mr. Merewether Had the majority of the shares in the Neath and Brecon Company the line was in a perfectly solvent condition the landowners gave their land and took shares. Mr. V. Harcourt objected to the cross-examination of the witness into such particulars. Mr. Merewether said that his object was to show that the Company were not in a position to expend the money which they said they were. Cross-examined Had pleaded hard over and over again for running powers over the Great Western line; both companies were now on most amicable terms. Mr. Merewether: That is something which is un- known to me then. Witness continued The object in seeking to ob- tain running powers was to benefit the public by giv- ing them access to Swansea, although if such powers were granted it would be to the loss of this Company thought they did not present to Parliament last year that more land was required was not aware that matters went to a decision about running powers. By the Chairman Were the running powers struck out ? Mr. Mereweather: The committee were not inclined to admit the clause. Witness continued The Great Western at present run their engines to Neath, and with the traffic thence to its destination had not tried the facilities with the contingent running powers, which they obtained last year bought the Oystermouth tramway of Mr. Morris Mr. Morris had an undoubted power to sell it. By Mr. Michael The junction of their line with the Swansea Vale Railway was not yet completed there was to be an interchange of traffic between the Neath and Brecon Railway and their line Mr. Mor- ris undertook to give him a good title to the Oyster- mouth tramway Mr. Morris was the mortgagee in possession for over fifty years, and gave witness an indemnity the purchase was only partly completed t Mr. Morris held securities uutil it was there were no proceedings in Chancery, with respect to that tram- way, that witness knew of was only aware of two 1 proceedings; one-Mr. Morris against himself, to compel him to complete the purchase, and another I by Mr. Morris against the Llanelly Railway. I By Mr. V- Harcourt: The Llanelly Railway Com- I pany had some works between the Brecon and Neath line and the South dock an existing injunction did j not affect the land in question the land that was 1 asked for was quite indispensible to the proper mak- t ing of their traffic; the Great Western had taken I away the land which the Brecon and Neath contem- t plated taking the land had been purchased expressly i for the purpose of a terminus the Neath and Brecon I had made their line entirely, and all they wanted now t was a terminus so as to enable them to realize upon the expenditure mtde the title deeds of the Oyster- I mouth Railway were deposited on an equitable mort- gage no powers were sought forworking steam engines over the tramway at present; the Llanelly Company were not likely to get the land, through their opposition, as it belong to witness himself; if the land was not given. the Neath and Brecon would be absolutely at Swansea without the means of accomo- dating thpir traffic there as proprietor of the Oystermouth Railway, it would be to his interest to exchange the traffic of that line with the Llanelly Company as freely as was done at present. By the Chairman They proposed to cross under the Llanelly line by arches from the land in question to the south dock. By Mr. Harcourt: The Harbour Trustees, who were the guardians of the harbour, offered no oppo- sition whatever to their scheme. Mr. Thomas Morley, the tiafflc manager of the Neath and Brecon Railway, said that the line was now virtually completed, and a considerable quantity of traffic had already passed over it as many as 7,000 tons of coal were carried from one colliery alone dur- ing the last month certain station accommoda- afforded them by the Great Western Company, which they had not yet obtained had had numerous complaints as to delay, and stop- page of traffic a train of 75 trucks had absolutely been returned because there was no accommodation for their line at Swansea. By Mr. Merewether Was a witness last year; believed he did not mention a single word then about their wanting this land the Swansea Vale and the Neath and Brecon junction would be ready for opening within six months could not say whether the money was ready for it; that did not come under his depart- ment; beli. ved that the works had been re-commenced. By the Chairman If accommodation was given them, the traffic from the collieries would no doubt be largely increased the land required was in fact merely a substitute for that which had been taken from them by the Great Western. Mr. Corfield, engineer, said that the Great Western station accommodation at Swansea was insufficient for the purposes of the Neath and Brecon line, so that it was absolutt ly necessary that, for the carrying on of their traffic, they should have ground on which to deal with their traffic beyond that which the Great Western offered them. Mr. Merewether cross-examined the witness as to whether certain lines of railway, as shown on the map, lying between Swansea and Neath railway, and a float were made, or were in the course of being made. The witness said that these lines were laid by Mr. Dixon, and his knowledge respecting them was merely superficial. Mr. Harcourt said that this was a matter which Mr. Dixon could himself have satisfactorily answered. Mr. M'Kenzie said that he was the engineer of the Neath and Brecon line from 1863 to 1865 he agreed with the previous witness that the station accommo- dation of the Great Western Company at Swansea was inadequate to carry the traffic which was going into it; if the Neath and Brecon traffic was to be worked there, it was absolutely necessary that the company should have additional land. Mr. Merewether here objected to the condition; of the company's capital, and called for the certificate of the Board of Trade. Mr. Harcourt contended that the standing order under which the objection was taken had no reference to the transfer of land-it applied only to things which were not included in his friend's petition. Mr. Merewether contended that the company were not in a position to justify the expenditure of capital which would be required for the purposes thereof. Mr. Harcourt said that those words must apply to what went before them. Mr. Merewether argued that upon that portion of his petition he was in a condition to show that the Neath and Brecon Company bad no capital for the purchase of this land. His petition was stated to be silent as to the Oystermouth railway, but was there not a standing order which obliged the company to show that they had paid up half their capital and had their certificate from the Board of Trade. He had a right to show that the Neath and Brecon Company had not done that. Mr. Harcourt said that the certificate was got from the Board of Trade last session; he submitted, how- ever, that such a certificate was not necessary in the purchase of a private tramway for a private owner the matter bad been before Lord Redesdale, who had considered it fully. Mr. Merewether said that if his Lordship had held that no certificate was necessary under such circum- stances, he would at once withdraw his opposition. Mr. Bell, the agent for the Bill, informed the com- mittee, that about a week ago, Mr. Baker, the agent for the Duke of Beaufort, called upon him, and showed him the certificate of five shares that had been issued to the predecessor of his Grace. He and Mr Baker then went to Lord Redesdale and discus. sed the matter, and his Lordship had very great doubt whether Mr. Baker had a right to interfere at this ti "e of the day, in respect to the purchase of the tramway, seeing that Mr. Morris had been in pos- session of it since the year 1815. It was expressed that Mr. Morris's holding was a good title against all the world, and hi- Lordship did not dissent from that opinion, and said he would consider the matter, determining whether it was necessary to put provi- sions in the Bill, so as to save the right of the parties, if they had any such right. The committee of Lord Redesdale promised to send him (Mr. Bell) the result of their deliberation, but he had not heard from him, and if their Lordships passed the preamble of the Bill, he should ask them to delay their report until he had heard from Lord Redesdale and the gentlemen referred to. Earl Beauchamp enquired whether the standing order was brought under Lord Redesdale'ii notice. Mr. Bell answered in the negative. Mr. Michael said that he urged the same point upon the consideration of their Lordships, as his learned friend Mr. Merewether. The Committee considered the point, and decided that it was not a point to stop the inquiry. Mr. Merewether then addressed the Committee on beha!f of the Great Western Company. The promoters, he said, had attempted to show that the acquirement of the land in question was an absolute necessity, but he would remind their Lordships that when they were before Parliament last year not a single word was said as to the importance of such land being taken into their scheme. He contended that as facilities were given to the company last year they ought to have tried them before they applied for further powers; for until they had exercised those facilities it was an im- possibility for them to state what accommodation could be given them. The Great Western Company knew perfectly well that the proposition of the Neath and Brecon line to work over the tramway, now worked by horse power was a fallacy and an absurdity. They knew that the Neath and Brecon Company had never worked their traffic there, and that it was a matter of pure absurdity for them now to attempt to do so. The scheme now propounded was a fallacy and a snare, and could only be intended for the purpose of misleading their Lordships in the matter. If the land was conceded to them now, next year they would come for running powers, which he submitted ought not to be given to them until the facilities which they now had had been proved to be futile. In conclusion, he asked their Lordships not to allow the contribution of the funds required towards the carrying out of a scheme which had been originated in aggression, carried out in aggression, and which in reality was only introduced into the middle of the Great Western system for a purpose which would be well understood by the committee, and which ought not to be allowed. The Neath and Brecon Company were bound to try the facilities given to them last session, and if they were found to answer, then the question of granting of running powers might arise. Mr. Wilson, C.E., was then examined on behalf of the Great Western Company, and said that he was well acquainted with Swansea and the railways running into it. The Great Western were lessees of the harbour for 999 years, at a rental of X4,145 per annum; and therefore it was to their interest to develop ia every possible way the traffic that might come from the railway there. The Great Western, in point of fact, now stood in the shoes of the Swansea Vale Harbour original proprietors. The position of the Neath and Brecon line was not such at present as to allow them to ascertain the merits of the facilities which were ijiven to them last year. The line was not finished, and an experiment could have been made to determine what those facilities were as yet. Was aware that-mining powers had been introduced into the Neath and Brecon Bill this year, and that they were struck out by the Commons. In cross-examination by Mr. V. Harcourt, the witness said that tramways at the Liverpool and Hull docks were worked by horse power, but that the docks there were different to those which were at Swansea. The Neath and Brecon Company, he maintained, had actually more room than they wanted, and that the 3reat Western could afford facilities for three times is much traffic as the Neath and Brecon line could Jring, and that they therefore ought to try those facilities before they asked for further powers. He was satisfied that the whole of the Neath and Brecon raffic could be handled with the greatest possible ease y the Great Western. The clause under which those acilities were given was very full indeed, and inder it the Neath and Brecon had got, as it were, )oth a house and a road to it, and he asked them to :ry them before they objected to their occupation. h t In answer to the Committee, Mr. Wilson said tnax 1* had never heard of any of the delays of tramc stated by one of the witnesses for the bill