we will give you the houses." That clarion call goes out from the British house-builders to the Government. "If you'll only let us have 200.tioo operatives. which is only a quarter of the number of men the Government has promised to release to the trade, well guarantee to build 300,000 permanent houses by the end of two years." And, of course, they want building materials released, too. This information I got at a meeting of the Flause-Building and Allied Industries Committee who are going to hold a competition among members of the National Council of Registered Housebuilders. The Council is a voluntary organisation set up by the industry itself to establish a certain standard of work and to stamp on the jerry-builder The idea of the competition is to get builders all over the country to submit plans for an arcbitect-designed house which will incorporate new methods of insulating, plumbing, fuel economy and so on, and to suit the particular dis trict for which it is intended. I'm glad to say that on the adjudicators' panel will be at !east one housewife. When the competition is over and the prizes awarded, incorporating the best ideas submitted, thirty pairs of houses will be built in various parts of the country and the public will be invited to We them and to comment on them. After this it is hoped to build the 300,000 houses mentioned above.
I understand that while the industry is not opposed to the prefabricated indoor units which we have seen in the Portal and other ready-made houses. the outside will be of traditional brick' and will conform in appearance to the type of house we are
uscilLtoffi Looking back on the types of houses put up in this country between wars. I think their exteriors are quite pleasant, even if the pipes continue to appear on the outside walls and they would tit far better into the British scene than the peculiar steel and composition contraptions which we are threatened with in the temporary
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WHILE there were so many building experts about I thought it a good opportunity to find out about the " seasonal" employment which put so much hardship on the men in certain sections of the trade. Are men still " stood off " when it nails with the consequent loss of one, two or three days pay ? I was glad to hear that now a minimum wage has been tixed so that rainy week; will not mean empty larders and shopping baskets. But it will probably involve some kind of insurance on the part of the trade. It will be the public who dial pay in the end.
FROM Bun Tsabhairne, in County Cork, comes a letter signed " M. C.," commenting on my lament on the decay in this country of the virtue of courtesy. " M. C." is talking about a journey she made in a bus recenily. • Being early afternoon most of the passengers were women who had been to sawn shopping, and school children returning home to the country. When the bus started two small boys in front gave up their seats. Behind me a little girl of about ten years offered her scat to a woman with a baby. She then moved forward and an older schoolboy—perhaps smitten by the long golden plaits—jumped up and offered her his place. The -child. 'dancing round, and seeing some women still standing. said to the boy in a grave, gentle voice, Oh, no, thank you. I think we should offer it to a lady.' And a poor, tired working woman was the grateful recipient."
" M, C." thinks that the children's religion is the basis of their good manners. Which brings me to the question — Does courtesy survive longer in Catholic countries ? And would the courtesy weather transplanting from the benevolent air in which it is cultivated to smoke and ugliness and rush of an English industrial town ?
* a er * AHUNDRED years ago on Sunday was born Gabriel Faure and the B.B.C. will do him proud next week. beginning on Sunday with his Requiem. with Scott Goddurd discussing the composer and some of his works in Music Liwera Calendar. There will also be a performance of his works by the B.B.C. orchestra -son Thursday with Kathleen Long as the soloist in the Fantasia for piano and orchestra. Like Cesar Franck, Faure had to wait a considerable time for recognition by his own countrymen.