Mexborough and Swinton Times May 13, 1927
Medical Report For 1926
Improvement in Vital Statistics
The report of the Medical Officer of health (Dr John MacArthur) to the Conisborough Urban District Council, for the year 1926 was presented at Wednesday’s meeting of the Council.
The population in 1921 was 15,860, an estimated population in 1926 for 17,720. The number of inhabited houses at the end of the year was 3540. The rateable value is £66,097, and the sum yielded by a penny rate is £275.
The total number of births during the year was 567, given a rate of 31.99, slightly less than last year, almost twice that for England and Wales.
The death rate is 11.9, slightly higher than that for the country, but less than for last year.
The chief causes of death was pneumonia, cancer, and heart disease. Altogether there were 211 deaths. Infant mortality accounted for 60, given the death rate of 15.8 per 1000; slightly down on last year, but 35 per 1000 greater than for England and Wales.
During last year there was only five cases of smallpox. There were 55 cases of pneumonia, and two thirds of the cases attacked died.
There were 80 case of scarlet fever, with no death. They were fairly evenly spread over the five wards, so that it is very difficult to decide whether there is any hidden focus of infection. It appears to have become endemic, but happily is of a mild type.
15 cases of diphtheria were notified, with one death. The infection commenced in the North Ward, and was almost entirely confined to it, there being only one case in each of the three other wards and two in the West ward.
13 cases of enteric fever were notified, with one death. Nine of these cases occurred in the North Ward, which was the centre of the epidemic some years ago. The cause may be due to sanitary conversions exposing the germs lying dormant in that area.
There were hundred and 18 cases of chickenpox, chiefly in the north and west wards. There were several localised outbreaks of measles and whooping cough. Measles accounted for five deaths. An attack of measles is regarded by the majority of people in the district very lightly, but it gives rise to more death than scarlet fever. Some go far as to wish that all children would have it and have done with it when a case occurs in the house, as they think it inevitable that all will have it.
104 cases of tuberculosis were notified. Overcrowding is not so marked owing to the number of houses which have been built, and this will undoubtedly alleviate some of the conditions which are the determining factors of this disease when the whole housing scheme is completed.
The medical officer expresses the opinion that an open-air school would be a step in the right direction in the treatment of children of school age.
It is a recognised fact that the enabling of coal dust is a contributory factor to pulmonary tuberculosis. The patients attended the dispensaries in Doncaster and Mexborough show marked benefits.
During the year 476 privy middens have been converted for all property and 2 to 3 water closets provided for new houses. There are now in the district 925 privy middens, 1880 pedestal water closets, 566 waste water closets, and 183 trough water closets.
There are three registered and eight licensed slaughterhouses, all in good condition. There are three Cal keepers with approximately 22 cows, with three sheds with accommodation for 25. There are six milk retailers were also cow keepers (two only in the urban district). There are 13 milk retailers altogether. There are 15 workshops and three bake houses.
The scavenging during the year has not been all that could be desired.
There were 223 houses erected, non-as part of the municipal housing scheme, but there were nine subsidised houses for private person and 208 for a public utility society.
Other Official Reports
the meat inspector (Mr WW Norwood, m.r.c.b.s.) reports that during a 228 animals were inspected alive or dead, and that there was a slight falling off in the number except of calves, of which 24 were killed for Easter.
A new butcher shop has been open for the sale of imported meat, whilst two new shops reported in the “New Village.”
Inspector draws attention to the Denaby Main Market Hall, which is thus described:
“Although the butchers keep their stalls as clean as possible, there are other shops of a very dirty and dusty nature, which is not conducive to the keeping of clean healthy meat. An enclosed yard at the top end of the building, which is common to all the tenant is in a shocking state.”
The surveyor (Mr H cell wall) reports a consumption of 25.8 gallons of water per head per day during April, as against 24.5 for March.
During April there were 67 cases of smallpox and two of diphtheria.
Northcliffe road resurfacing has been completed and the second portion of Denaby Lane has been commenced.
The first 28 (direct) houses are in various stages of completion, and of the second 32, 28 have concrete foundations in, 24 being to damp course and four to first floor.