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MATE'S HANDBOOK TO SOUTHAMPTON.
that most value is attached, for a town that year after year can keep in the front rank must obviously owe its position to no mere accident. Taking then the returns for the past five years we note the following
London
33 "Great Towns" 67 Next Largest Towns Bournemouth
Average General Death Rate.
19 0 19 5 17 5 10 5
Average Zymotic Death Rate.
2-72 2 84 2 43 0 67
Notwithstanding its large invalid population—for part of the year it is more of a health than a pleasure resort—Bournemouth can show a lower death-rate than any other large town in the country, a better record than competing places, and a wonderful immunity from infectious disease. Its death-rate is little more than half that of London, Edinburgh, or Paris, less than half that of Glasgow, and only about a third that of Dublin, which may, it is claimed, be taken as fair evidence not only of the efficiency of its sanitary administration, but that it possesses climatic and hygienic attractions which should commend it still more largely to public favour and extend its reputation as a health resort.
Bournemouth is essentially a Victorian town. Mr. L. D. G. Tregonwell, who, as recorded on the Founder's Tomb in St. Peter's Churchyard, " was the first to bring Bournemouth into notice as a watering-place," built a house here, it is true, as far back as 1810; but the civic history of Bournemouth dates only from 1856, when the district was first invested with powers of local government. How small and insignificant the place was may be gauged from the fact that when the census was taken in 1861 the town was found to have a population of only 1700, while its rateable value was less than £5,000. To-day it has a population of between 50,000 and 60,000 and a rateable value of nearly £400,000. It became a Municipal Borough in 1890, and in 1899 was raised to the status of a County Borough, and placed in possession of the fullest privileges enjoyed by British Municipalities.
Bournemouth, though a modern town, has many interesting associations, and is surrounded by neighbours of historic fame: the venerable mother town of Christchurch, with its stately Priory Church, founded by Ralph Flambard, confidential minister to William Rufus ; Poole, Wareham, Corfe Castle, and Wimborne Minster; while Winchester (once the capital of the country) and Salisbury, Southampton, and Portsmouth are all within the range of a day's railway excursion. Standing on the Pier or the Cliffs and looking
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