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[Page] 10

The overflows from manure tanks and drains from cattle courts,
in some instances, are carried to roadside ditches and cause

In both the villages and the rural parts, conveniences, pigstyes,
and ashpits are often in close proximity to dwellinghouses, and even
in erecting new conveniences, &c., there is a tendency to keep them
close to dwellings - the occupiers objecting to have to go any distance
from the door.

At many of the schools, the conveniences are badly designed and
objectionably near the school buildings, and are not so frequently
cleansed as is desirable; in fact, the excrement in some cases is allowed
to accumulate for a year in pits adjoining the erections. Some of the
schools are deficient in ventilation.

In the rural portions of the County, the water for domestic use is
at great distances from the dwelling-houses in a number of cases, and
in others, where the water is near the dwellings, ashpits, piggeries,
and other sources of contamination are contiguous, which causes
suspicion as to the quality of the water; the same objection not
being applicable to the former. In addition to the distance and the
doubtful quality, there is an alleged deficiency at different places.

The purity of the rivers and other sources of water is a question of
interest to the County. Some of the streams and rivers are greatly
polluted by sewage, including sewage from villages outwith the
County, and refuse from bleachfields and manufactories. At two
villages settling tanks are constructed to receive the sewage, and the
overflows therefrom are allowed to discharge into the stream or river
without any effectual attempt being made to purify the sewage. In
other villages the sewage from any existing drains finds its way to
streams and rivers without the intervention of settling tanks. The
sewage from the village of Downfield is utilized for irrigating a field
of land in the vicinity, and this method, to my mind, proves a satis-
factory way for the disposal of sewage from inland villages. The sewage
from large houses in the County is sometimes allowed to enter
streams and rivers without passing through a cesspool, settling tank,
or filter of any description. Although cesspools or settling tanks
may intercept the grosser or more solid parts of the sewage, the
liquid portion remains deleterious and injurious to health.

[Page] 11

There are manufactories where privies are placed over the lade,
and the excrement drops directly into the water, and is carried into
the stream or river.

If the flow of the river is rapid and the bottom formed of rock or
boulders, the water will to a certain extent be clarified, but in a
slow flowing river, with a soft muddy bottom, the water will be
polluted according to the bulk of sewage and water. The water
from some of the streams and rivers is used for culinary and other
domestic purposes.

The washings and ley from the bleachfields are generally allowed
to enter the rivers without any attempt being made to lessen their
obnoxious feature, other than allowing it to pass through settling
tanks, which at most will only intercept the grosser parts.

The bothies, houses for the labouring classes, and even some
farm-houses, are not in such a condition of repair as is desirable, and
considerable improvements will have to be effected.

The bothies are a very mixed lot as to repair - some all that can
be desired, others bad, and a great number are kept in a filthy state.
It is held by some persons that it is the duty of the farmer that the
bothy be kept clean, while it is maintained by others that, if the
bothy is provided, it is for the occupiers to keep it clean and in a
healthy condition. Much can be said on both sides. Without
entering upon controversial points, it may be stated that no bothy
will be kept clean, however anxious and attentive a farmer may be,
except the occupiers aid in doing so. The better-class bothies having
a large living room, bedrooms for each occupier, pantry and coal_
house, or living rooms with one large bedroom, are little better as
regards cleanliness. In many instances the beds are removed from
the rooms intended for them and placed in the living rooms. The
property is often damaged by acts of carelessness. In one particular
case, it was observed, a first-class new bothy with living room and
single bedrooms had the floor considerably destroyed before it had
been occupied eighteen months.

The dwellinghouse for the labouring class is a question difficult of
solution. Most of the villages in the County have been built or
formed as seats of the hand-loom weaving industry. In fact, the

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CorrieBuidhe- Moderator, Douglas Montgomery

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