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THE OVENS AND MURRAY RAILWAY
CONGRESS AT WANGARATTA
(SPECIALLY REPORTED FOR THE ARGUS)
A very influential meeting-indeed, the most important ever held in these districts took place on Wednesday last, at Wangaratta. The object was to take steps for combining the whole district in an association for the purpose of urging upon the Government tho great necessity of establishing railway communication with the north-east of Victoria . Delegates had been invited by the committee appointed by the railway conference held in Beechworth about a year ago, to assemble from, the various local bodies, and from the committees of the North-Eastern Railway League, and there was a general response. Numerous public bodies were represented, from Albury to Benalla in one direction, and from the Buckland to Wahgunyah in another. His Honour Judge Cope attended as one of the delegates from the Beechworth Agricultural Association, and was requested to preside.
The following are names of the delegates, and the bodies which they represent:-Town of Albury - Lewis Jones (mayor), and Alderman Mott; Borough of Beechworth -F Brown (mayor), and Councillor Witt; Borough of Chiltern - H A Crawford (mayor), and Councillor Moss; Rutherglen - Mr Nott (mayor), and Councillor Thorpe; Wangaratta - Councillor Evans (in place of the mayor, Mr Dixon, absent in Melbourne), and Councillor Clarke; Shire of Beechworth - R Thomson (president), and Councillor Bussell ; Shire of Bright - Councillors Wm M'Lean and Wm Hooper; Shire of Oxley - R Wood (president), and Councillor D Evans; Shire of Yackandandah - Gilbert Power (president), and Councillor A Griffin; Road Board of Rutherglen - Messrs J Graham and J L Brown; Road Board of North Ovens - Messrs C Spink and C A Reid; Indigo Road Board Messrs P M'Keone and J Strickland; Beechworth Mining Board - J Lorimer (chairman), and W Ward. Also from the following North Eastern Railway League Committees:- Central - Messrs. H Nickless and J K Brown; Barnawartha - G Henderson and J B Barlow; Wahgunyah G Anderson and S Rupin; Rutherglen D Logan, A M'Cleery; Wangaratta - H S Parfitt, E Lucas; Wodonga - S Burke, A Kilgour; Albury - J Liddle, S Mudge; Brown's Plains - G F Morris, F Fraser; Estcourt; - A Everett; Tarrawingee - F G Docker, R D Reid; Rutherglen farmers - J Chandler; also the agricultural societies of Chiltern and Barnawartha - J A Mulligan, W Wilson; Wahgunyah - C G Baldock, A Stewart; Benalla - P Martin, E Brown; Beechworth - T S Cope, J Irvine; Ovens and Murray - J Norton, A J Smith.
The meeting threatened once or twice to be boisterous, but the chairman succeeded in maintaining admirable order.
His Honour Judge COPE, on being moved to the chair, explained the object of the meeting, and read letters from the mayor of Wangaratta, apologising for his absence from the Woodend Borough Council, offering all the assistance in their power; and from the Kilmore Council to the same effect. He then called upon Mr Scarlett, the hon. secretary of the Railway Conference, to read the final report of that body.
Mr SCARLETT read the report, which stated the action taken by the standing committee of the conference up to that time, also a clean balance-sheet.
The report was received.
Mr RICHARD THOMSON then said that from the first meeting of the railway conference to the last, it had not been determined by the sub-committee what line to ask for. They had certainly had a survey of the Goornong route, and the report upon that survey was so favourable that a railway in that direction would be undoubtedly remunerative; but if that line were adopted, it would cause a very considerable detour, and a loss of time of something like two hours. They had not then been in a position to suggest a more direct route.
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