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Till recently, perhaps ten chains of the stone walling nearest St. Clair had remained more or less in position, but the greater portion of this has now been brought down, undermined by the sea, and much of the bank it supported has followed.
Further eastward, the surf has bitten afresh and deeply into the embankment, the facing of the brushwood carefully placed there by the Domain Board for a protection proving inadequate for the purpose, much of it being involved in the general rain.
While the parade never had any former glories, it had initially at least an ambitious width, but this is now reduced at some points to about twelve feet, and the crumbling edges should bid pedestrians beware.
Nature has clearly resented this work - now a melancholy monument of futile expenditure and engineering optimism - as an unwarranted intrusion, and is taking her own time and her own methods for its entire removal.
Raid taken coolly
The air raid on July 8, on London occurred about 10.30 a.m., the enemy squadron being one of the largest yet sighted in England. The British patrols became active as soon as their approach was signalled, and several duels were fought over London, this being supposed to be the cause of the raiders' sudden change of course homewards. Large numbers of bombs were first dropped.
The enemy group appeared to receive its first check as it reached an inner northern district. The gunners found the range, and the machines began to waver. They soon got out of line, and the squadron scattered somewhat. The crowds in the street took the raid coolly. They watched until bombs began to drop, and then they took cover.
As soon as the British machines arrived the enemy squadron quickened its pace, and the main body raced away, leaving two of its machines in the rear. The latter were apparently engaged by the British, but the haze prevented those below from seeing what happened, and soon all were lost to sight. The bomb dropping lasted two or three minutes.
Serving in the North Sea
A most interesting letter concerning the doings of the Motor Boat Patrol has been received by Mrs A. J. Canning, of Wellington, from her son, Motor Mechanic Douglas Pulsford, who left the dominion with the New Zealand section last year.
''I love this job,'' he said, ''although the hours are so long and the work so hard, but somehow the North Sea fascinates me. I have heard some tales of it too, but even my own experiences would startle you. Talk about cold and rough, well it's just too awful. I've seen our boat stand up like a ninepin and the next second have her nose five feet under a big sea. The crew laugh at my terror-stricken face, but they don't seem to have any sense of fear. They are all off trawlers and have been in the North Sea all their lives. They are really wonderful men. You should see them handle a gun. It would do your eyesight good. ''With all its hardships, this life is splendid, and I would not be out of it for anything. To see those destroyers work, dashing in all directions like lightning and to feel our boat almost pull from under you when we open our engines is worth ten years of a man's life. There's no doubt about the navy. It works like a clock, only more silently. Our actual experiences will have to wait till we meet, but I can assure you we are not wasting time.''
School nurses appointed
The Hon. J. A. Hanan (Minister of Education) announces (says our Wellington correspondent) that six school nurses have been appointed in connection with the school medical service. They will have their headquarters at Auckland, Wanganui, Wellington, Christchurch, Dunedin, and Invercargill. The nurses not only assist the medical inspectors during their examination of the children, but, where necessary, visit the parents in their own homes and give assistance and information.
Miners find mammoth
It is now known that the mining at Messines, which the Germans admit was one of the finest pieces of mining in the war, was largely the work of Australian and New Zealand tunnelling companies. Mr Perry Robinson states that while digging on the Messines front, the troops unearthed an excellent specimen of a mammoth, with flint instruments of great antiquity with which the beast had been killed and cut up. The treasure trove was handled with due scientific care.
A Poverty Bay settler, who recently visited Masterton, stated that the roads are in such a terrible condition in his district, owing to the heavy and continuous rains that have fallen, that much of last season's wool has not reached Gisborne from the back-blocks. Unless the roads are put in order, the outlook for next season, with all the sheds full, will be very gloomy.
- ODT, 10.7.1917.
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