HUDDERSFIELD AND MANCHESTER RAILWAY AND CANAL.
The half-yearly meeting of the proprietors in this undertaking was held on Saturday week, in the Guild Hall, Huddersfield, and was only thinly attended. W. Aldam, Esq., M.P., occupied the chair, and was supported by the Directors.
Mr. Gilmer, the Secretary, read the advertisement convening the meeting, and afterwards the Directors' Report, and also the Engineer's Report. We give a few extracts from the first, as much of it refers to matters spoken of in the Engineer's Report.
Referring to the balance-sheet circulated among the shareholders, the Report says, in substance—
The Chairman began by congratulating the shareholders on the circumstance that a saving of 19 per cent. had been effected in the working of the canal, as compared with the last half-year, and of 27 per cent. as compared with the preceding. It had been supposed that the line from Cooper Bridge to Huddersfield would be opened on the first of May; but, if the weather was not favourable, it might be the first of June before it was opened. The branch referred to, as being recently let, was a western branch to effect a junction with the Manchester and Leeds. He then referred to the other works mentioned in the Report, and assured the meeting that the Directors would use every endeavour to expedite their completion ; so that the whole line might be opened throughout in May, 1849. Having the power to borrow, that power of course would be exercised, according to circumstances; if the proposed amalgamation with the North-Western took place, it would be necessary to consult their convenience. He concluded by moving that the balance sheet and the Report read be received and adopted.
Mr. Joseph Brook seconded the resolution.
Some conversation arising as to the required capital, necessary to enable them to borrow, being paid, Mr. T.A. Heaps addressed the Directory on the necessity of their exercising the power of borrowing as speedily as possible, because they would be able to do so much more advantageously, in the present state of the money market, than when other Companies, who obtained their Acts last year, came into the market to compete with them for these necessary loans. He said that they might take it for granted that the amalgamation would be fully carried out; and he urged the Directors to lose no time in exercising the power they had of borrowing.
The resolution was carried unanimously.
Resolutions, re-electing several of the retiring Directors, also one of the Auditors, and declaring some 24 shares, on which the calls had not been paid, forfeited, were then submitted seriatim and passed. With respect to these shares, it was stated that they were strictly of the nature of mortgages, which, having been sold with a view to pay off the arrears, reverted back to the party who previously held them; so that they could only obtain upon them just as much as would pay the arrears.
The meeting was then resolved into a special meeting, for the purpose of receiving and sanctioning the draft of the Bill for the amalgamation of the Huddersfield and Manchester with the London and North Western.
The marginal notes, and some of the clauses of the Bill were read; and, in the course of this reading, Mr. T.A. Heaps informed the meeting that he found, from a Report of the prospects of the London and North Western, that the minimum amount of new stock issued by that Company amounted to one million sterling, and provided the amalgamation took place, the proprietors in the Huddersfield and Manchester would be entitled to £25 or thereabouts for every share they held jointly with the proprietors in the London and North Western, and on that sum they would be entitled to receive 10s. per cent., which was equal to a premium of £5.
Mr. Joseph Brook said that they were entitled to receive their share in any new creation of stock taking place after November, 1846; and receive the same dividend as the London and North Western upon those creations.
Mr. Heaps urged the shareholders to hold fast to their stock, showing them, as it was simply a question of double rule of three, that if a £100 share in the London and North Western was worth £185, be cause it obtained 10 per cent., a like share in the Huddersfield and Manchester, which was to receive 7 per cent., was worth a premium of £29 10s. on account of the relations it bore to the London and North Western.
The Chairman and several of the Directors expressed their acquiescence in Mr. Heaps' views as being a correct and proper one.
The Chairman then addressed the meeting as to the favourable prospects before them on uniting with such a large and powerful Company as the London and North Western, commanding, as it did, a large and extensive traffic; and, in conclusion, he moved the sanction of the draft of the Bill for their incorporation with the London and North Western. Carried mem. con.
Thanks were then voted to the Chairman, and the compliment acknowledged.
On the motion of Mr. W. Moore, a vote of thanks was given to Mr. T. A. Heaps, for the lucid and able manner in which he had shown the true position of the Huddersfield and Manchester Railway and Canal Company.
The meeting then separated.