IN last Wednesday’s issue I explained that in future we must get an ambulance of our own or go without one, so it will be wise for us to consider what system we will adopt.
I outlined the Victorian system, so that the most suitable service must be adopted.
In Queensland they have the best ambulance system in the World. In any part of Queensland any person who needs an ambulance can have one at any time free of charge. Only persons who can afford it are expected to contribute according to their means.
They own their ambulance buildings, both for cars and also houses for the men. They have the last word in up-to-date cars. There are several large centres who in turn have a number of sub-centres, so that by this they have a network of systems right throughout the State.
The Queensland Government grants £ for £ for land, pays annually over £10,000.
I am sorry our Government will not do likewise; but to get this amount the people must also raise a like amount. This they do by collections from sympathisers and grateful benefactors, also from business firms, lodges, schools, churches, shire councils, and different associations, and each place in the district holds one good entertainment in the year just the same as they do for a cricket or football club for example.
Maryborough centre receives personal subscriptions, £617/17/10; collections and employers’ lists, £201/13/7; school collections, £62/19/-; collection boxes, £10/19/-; office boxes, £37/9/11; societies and municipal, £161/10/4; benefits, £977/14/-; total, £2098/16/5, about 1/4 per head of population.
In Maryborough head centre population, 30,000, and area 80 miles across with a permanent staff of five men with four cars, then sub-centres at Gayndah, with three men and two cars; Murgon, with one man and one car; they also have a number of auxiliaries, who only get paid when they are called out to assist.
They have also honorary centres right through the district, who are supplied from headquarters (free) with litter and first-aid outfits.
These honorary bearers carry patients from short distances to railway, etc. All this is done free. A few years ago Maryborough lent £2000 free of interest to another centre, and in two years £500 had been paid back. This has been going on for 20 years, and there has never been one failure and financial matters never trouble them.
We hope to have a good response to our ambulance week, November 18 to 24, both days included; so we can start straight away. I will compare the two systems next week.
THE death of Mrs. Coxall, mother of Mr. A. Coxall, of Frankston, has occurred at Windsor. The old lady, who had been a colonist for 70 years, had reached the advanced age of 92 years.
A few years ago she had the misfortune to break her hip, but, despite that, she was physically strong to the last, though her mental senses were a little impaired.
She was buried at Creswick on Monday last.
THE marriage of Miss Elizabeth Pollock, of Glasgow, Scotland, and Mr. Archie R. Lloyd, of Horsham, will take place at Sorrento tomorrow.
AT the instigation of Mr. McCorkell, the Dromana Progress Association is to be revived to interest the people in district development.
THE store and post office at Rosebud has been totally destroyed by fire.
The cause is wrapped in mystery.
MR. T. Ritchie has purchased Mr. Thos. Wallace’s valuable property at Mornington. The property adjoins Sir. Willlam McPherson’s seaside residence.
THE Mornington Shire Council propose to borrow £3250 for completing electric light scheme and improvements to Alexander Park.
MR. W. J. Thorne, who died at Melbourne recently, resided at Mornington for the past 40 years. He was 58 years of age.
THE Mornngton Football Club’s novelty night was highly successful, though the attendance was not all that could have been desired.
MR. J. F. Conroy, killed recently on the Healesville line, was for some years a guard on the Frankston line, and resided at Mornington.
BETWEEN forty and fifty users of electric light and power met at the Frankston Mechanics’ Hall on Tuesday night last to discuss the high cost of current. Several ladies were in attendance.
Mr. J. D. Jennings was voted to the chair. He said that the electric light was a great boon, but sometimes boons could prove too expensive.
He had checked his meter and found that one light was costing him at the rate of 5/- per week.
Mr. C. W. Wood said his electric light account for April was £1/2/-; in May it jumped to £2/7/2. He thought there must be something wrong with the meter.
Mr. D. Dodd, who was appointed hon. secretary to the meeting, remarked that like Mr. Wood, his account for May was greatly in excess of the previous month, and totalled over £7.
Mr. Haggart moved that this meeting resolve to ask the council to try and reduce the cost of electric light and power. He pointed out that Chelsea was charging 8d. per unit for light and 2d. for power, as against 10d. and 6d. charged at Frankston.
Mr. Wood seconded the motion.
Mr. Wheeler said he had been told that the Electricity Commission fixed the price and not the council.
Mr. Young stated that the Commission sold the current to the council at a certain rate, and the council then fixed the price to consumers.
Crs. Wells, Oates, Mason, and McCulloch here entered the meeting and were welcomed by the chairman.
Cr. Mason said the council was paying 8½d. to the Commission for the current.
Cr. H. J. McCulloch, then went exhaustively into figures, showing the amount of current purchased by the council during the last ten months, and quantity paid for by consumers.
The current had cost the council 8¼d., and it was impossible to retail it to the consumer at less than 10d. per unit.
The council was losing on current for power as it was. There was a considerable leakage, and it was unfortunate that there were no meters on the street lights.
Cr. Oates explained that Chelsea paid for its current under a different rating from Frankston. The electric light committee was now discussing the question of applying a special rate of 3d. to Seaford and Mt. Eliza on the same principle as the water rate was levied.
Cr. Mason assured the meeting that the council was not out to make profits on the electric light undertaking, the electrical engineer had advised charging 1/- per unit for lighting, but the council on its own responsibility had cut it down to 10d.
Cr. Wells said Chelsea was advantaged by having a direct line to convey the current from Melbourne, whereas Frankston line went to Mordlialloc and Dandenong, thus increasing overhead expenses.
Frankston started with 150 consumers and now had 450.
Mr. W. C. Young said the people were satisfied that the council was doing the best it could as to charges, although it would be good policy in the interests of production to reduce the cost of current used for power.
From the pages of the Frankston and Somerville Standard, 4 & 6 Jul 1923
First published in the Mornington News – 4th July 2023