Logie 100: December 1919

We take a look at what happened in the Logie project 100 years ago this month.

From the monthly report, it seems that in November a few days had been lost to a hard frost. The number of men working at the site increased slightly from 196 to 214. But there were still problems with the men that were being hired. They had no experience with this type of work; many of them were ex-Army. James Thomson, City Engineer and Architect pointed out that many men were being sacked after only a few days. He stated in his monthly report that these men needed to be given some time to adjust and to get used to the work. It seems that by now, there was no longer a shortage of labour. But problems with the supply of bricks continued.

The strikes had finished and the transportation had smoothed out. At a special meeting of the Housing and Town Planning Committee on 9th of December, Mr Carnegie, one of the contractors stated that the problems were due to a lack of bricks. Because the suppliers were being paid by the Government, not the Council, there was a backlog with payments going through. It is said one brick supplier had handed over £1300 worth of bricks but the Government had only paid £50.

Part of the problem was that the bricks had to travel 40 miles to get to Dundee. At a meeting of the Dundee and District Master Builders on 3rd December, the members bemoaned the lack of local knowledge the council and James Thomson had shown. They pointed out that not only were there stone quarries much closer to Dundee, but that stone was much cheaper. They stated that bricks £1 11s 6d, whilst the same in stone would only be 16s. They also argued that using stone would boost the local economy. At the special meeting on 9th December it is reported that James Thomson recommended that local stone would be use for the Hospital Park development.

Rent rates were also discussed in December. The charge of 10s per week was suggested. However it was noted that this was compared with private homes that had no large scullery or even a bathroom. It was decided to put of the decision about rents until a nearly complete block could be inspected. A proposal for street names was also to be prepared.

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