DESPITE adverse weather conditions, there was a splendid attendance at the Frankston Mechanics’ Hall on Tuesday night, when Mr A. K. T. Sambell, who has been brought out by the Frankston Branch of the National Federation, expressed his views.
The Shire President (Cr W. P. Mason) occupied the chair. He said that nothing in his public career had given him greater pleasure than the task of assisting the candidate in this election campaign.
Mr Sambell, who was most cordially received, spoke for nearly three hours. The soundness of his views and his undoubted earnestness in offering what he considered practical solutions of present day political problems, kept the audience keenly interested and he was frequently applauded.
Mr Sambell said he had been approached by the National Federation to offer himself as a candidate on two former occasions but he had not then been able to accept.
On the present occasion he had been asked to nominate by the Frankston Branch of the Federation, but the reply from Melbourne had been received that his name should have been submitted earlier.
He failed to see where he had lost any time, assuming he was correct in his contention that he should first ascertain the desires of the people he proposed to represent. (hear, hear)
Personally he had a very great respect for the selected candidate, but it was only fair to state that right throughout the constituency a great deal of objection had been raised to the selection of a candidate by two or three city men.
However, it was satisfactory to know that his candidature had some endorsement from the people of this district. (cheers)
Mr Sambell said he realised that this constituency wanted a fighting representative in Parliament. He instanced the Kananook Creek as a matter in which the member for the district should refuse to take “No” for an answer.
How many years had elapsed since the district had been robbed of its beauty?
The creek had been a living thing, giving great enjoyment to the people. What loss did its present useless condition represent in money, and yet no one seemed to be worrying about it politically.
A tangible scheme for its improvement had been formulated, but on the report of a junior officer of the department, the blue pencil had been passed through it.
The matter was not going to stop there. (Cheers.)
Mr Horsley, a senior officer, had lately said the scheme was practicable, and now the only thing lacking to secure success was the political punch.
If returned to Parliament he ventured to say that at the end of three years the people would have nothing to complain of concerning the condition of Kananook Creek. (cheers)
Another matter dealt with was the rule of thumb governing road administration. The maintenance of Point Nepean road fell heavily on this Shire, particularly the Seaford Riding, considering that 90 per cent of the traffic using the road came from outside the Shire.
Formerly the Shire had half cost of maintenance, now it was one-third.
Chairman – Who was responsible for that reduction ?
Cr Oates – Our Engineer, the candidate. (applause)
Mr Sambell said Point Nepean Road should be classed as a national road. The Government wisely preserved the foreshore; but that meant that from Mile Bridge to Carrum boundary no revenue was derivable from the property on one side.
From Carrum to Mordialloc both sides of the road were built on, and the Councils concerned collected hundreds of pounds in revenue.
This was a case in which the State should recognise the value of the road as a State road – the same as had been done in the road from Melbourne to Geelong – and not expect a small section of the community like Seaford to bear the crushing burden of maintenance.
Mr Sambell dealt exhaustively with road policy, water supply, railway management, the electricity scheme, and other questions.
He had praise for the Lawson Government, and referred to the peculiar alliance between the Labor Party and the Farmers’ Union.
Dr Maxwell, in moving a vote of thanks to the candidate, said he would prefer to move a vote of confidence, but he believed that was not the fashion these days.
He desired to say straight out that he was an out-and-out “Sambellite.” (laughter and cheers)
He did not know Mr Sambell personally, but he had watched his career.
Everything was chaos when Mr Sambell came to this Shire, ten or more years ago. The wonderful improvement effected in that period spoke for itself, for if an engineer was to be held responsible for bad spots in the road he ought certainly to receive credit for the good roads.
Frankston ought to be proud of being able to bring out a man of Mr Sambell’s ability. (cheers)
Cr Oates seconded the motion, and stated that while Mr Downward had referred them to the Act when they asked for relief in connection with main road maintenance, Mr Sambell had set to work and actually secured an amendment of the Act, reducing the shire’s liability from half to one-third.
If Mr Sambell could do that as shire engineer what could he not do as their member in Parliament. (cheers)
The meeting closed amidst the utmost enthusiasm after Mr Sambell had answered several questions.
He said he was not a betting man and did not know much about the totalisator, but did not believe in legalised betting.
He was in favor of Scripture teaching in State Schools, on a plan approved by all denominations.
He believed in higher salaries and fewer politicians.
IN connection with the Frankston Fire Brigade Ex-Soldier writes to the “Standard” as follows:
Ring the fire bell! This was the first intimation to the people that two little children had been lost, and readily did the Fire Brigade respond to the call.
It was noticed however, that the Fire Brigade consisted of lads in their teens. Good willing lads, admitted, doing their duty as loyal citizens.
It must be acknowledged that the township of Frankston is going ahead rapidly, but by the number of wooden houses, it hardly bears thought what would happen in the event of a big outbreak of fire.
Captain D. Petrie is to be congratulated on the manner in which he has devoted his time and energy in training these lads in firedrill, in spite of inadequate appliances and lack of support.
Throughout my travels in the world I have particularly noticed that every township is proud of its Fire Brigade, and it is considered a great privilege and honor to be admitted as a member.
It is the duty of every strong able bodied man to take a course of fire drill, to be ready when occasion arises.
I wonder what would be thought of any man were he to see his own dwelling in flames, with the possibility of loss of his dear ones, and trained men were not available to come to his assistance – he had left it to the other fellow.
I appeal to the manhood of this town to come forward and show their grit, and make our Fire Brigade what it should be – a strong body of men ready to deal with any emergency, and look upon it as a citizen’s duty, and not an obligation.
From the pages of the Frankston and Somerville Standard, 26 August 1921