Captain Reynolds Among the Denaby Miners – “It´s not Thee – It´s Thi Politics”

December 1923

Mexborough & Swinton Times, December 08

Captain Reynolds Among the Denaby Miners

An Amusing Meeting

“It´s not Thee – It´s Thi Politics”

Capt. Reynolds had quite a pleasant reception at Denaby on Tuesday. He met the barrage of questions with the greatest good humour and left quite an agreeable impression, even if he did not make many converts.

The Chairman of the West Riding Farmers Union Me. H. Cox, presided and he and the candidate were breezily introduced by M. W. Norwood of Conisbrough. Throughout the meeting, the candidate was allowed to explain his views without any serious interruption.

Capt. Reynolds gave an instance of the kind of thing Protection was designed to stop. A letter had been received by a housing contractor at Warmsworth from a German firm who promised to send doors, finished complete “with nobs on”, for the housing scheme at Warmsworth. The price of one door was 17/-. There would be a 2 ½ per cent reduction on 20 doors, and a ten per cent reduction of 200 or more.

The Captain raised a little storm when he referred to the member from North Battersea Mr. Saklatwala.

“I think”, said Capt. Reynolds, “you ought to be able to find an Englishman to represent Englishmen in an English City”

A Voice: You have been talking about the Empire, and India is part of the Empire. Why shouldn´t an Indian represent us?

When the candidate suggested that Mr. Ramsay MacDonald was anxious to stop the Capital Levy, the whole audience rose to deny the statement.

One of the hecklers said that Mr. Lloyd George had spoken in favour of the Levy, to which the candidate replied: “Don´t mix me up with Mr. Lloyd George.”

Supposing the Levy were passed into Law, Capt. Reynolds asked what would be done with the unemployed in the three years that would be taken up in the discovery of the best working plan?

“Feed `em” was the ready response from the body of the hall.

As the interruptions grew somewhat more frequent the chairman asked for more latitude for the Captain “as he was not so accustomed to politics as some of the members of the audience seemed to be”

A Voice: “Is the candidate in favour of the treatment meted out to ex-Servicemen by the late Government? – No. I am not.

Then why do you support the same Government now?” (Cheers)

A Voice (female) Do you agree that the polling booths should be put into the charge of men with good salaries, when there are so many unemployed about? – No, I do not lady, but you must remember the Returning Officer is my boss as well as theirs.

A Voice: Why are you prejudiced against an Indian representing Englishmen in the House of Commons, and what right have we to go dominating the Indians? – We have done a great deal for the Indians. They have now a great measure of self-government.

A Voice: What about Amritsar? – What about it?

A Voice: Do you agree that the miners of India should work for one penny an hour? – I do not know the working conditions in the mines of India. It does not seem right to me.

A Voice: I should like to ask the candidate a simple question.

Capt. Reynolds: I like simple questions. (Laughter)

Voice: Will tariffs raise prices? – I think not.

Voice: I think prices will go up, and that other countries will still be able to compete with us, when the tariff barrier is raised. What is the good of the tariff if other countries can still undersell us?

Capt. Reynolds: I think you are looking at the matter from your own point of view.

The Voice: I am looking at it from a bread and butter point of view. (Laughter)

A Voice: The tariffs will raise the prices of food in the country. The working man will have to pay and the commodities of the working man will all be increased in price (Cheers)

Another Voice: The rich can pay but the poor cannot.

A Voice: Victor Hugo said that tariffs would be a paradise for the rich and a hell for the poor.

A Voice: Why are some glass works on full time and others on part time? Why are the works at Mexborough closed down and Dale and Browns, at Swinton on full time?- I do not know Swinton.

A Voice: It is the back-door of Mexborough (Loud Laughter)

Capt. Reynolds: I think the difficulties of the glass trade are caused by foreign competition.

A Voice: Why have certain London firms posted notices saying that prices are subject to the tariff?

Capt. Reynolds: It is a smart wheeze to get orders by frightening mugs.

Voice: Lads! He thinks we´re mugs! (Laughter and uproar)

The meeting broke up at this point. The candidate chatted with one or two of the audience as he left. One could here “Nay, tha´r alrit, It´s not thee we don´t like, its´ thi politics!”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.