An article in The Fiji Instances on July 2, 1977, introduced again the nice outdated reminiscences of Labasa City within the early Nineteen Twenties when it was nonetheless on the improvement phases.
The city was a village at the moment, with earth highway having deep aspect drains.
Through the spring tide, you might fish in the midst of the business websites, which had been surrounded by cane, rice, coconut, and cattle farms. At the moment web site of the Civic Centre had been 4 bure occupied by James McComber’s household.
The location was lined with tiri patches and at excessive tide the world may very well be classed as lowland swamps.
There was no water provide, electrical energy, or phone providers.
Folks used wells and tank water. Kerosene, hurricane lamps and horses had been the technique of transport.
There have been few shops scattered within the space, specifically A.M. Broziak LTD, Jaganath Manhu Bros, Lalji Valabdass Kara Raniga, Adhin, Venkataya, Ramsi Subrail, Hendry Marks Ltd in Vulovi with the Submit Workplace. All shops confronted the C.S.R tramline, which was the principle freeway of these days.
In case you should submit a penny letter to Suva, you needed to journey two miles to the Submit Workplace, and it took 5 days to achieve Viti Levu by sea mail.
On the identical time, if you happen to should see a police officer or district administrator or for telegram messages, you had so as to add one other mile.
In case you wished to see the medical officer on the Authorities Hospital, you add one other eight miles, whether or not by foot or horse.
There was no different technique of transport. Within the early days, the freeway bridges, tramline, highway and Malau Jetty had been subsidised by the Authorities.
The CSR had their very own agriculturist, market centre, sports activities, racecourse, butchery, dairy farm, shops, hospital, vegetable, gardens, and colleges.
The principle wholesale export and import retailer owned by Mr C D Eyre at Malau Jetty was the busiest coastal dealer who exported produce by direct cargo.
And it was regretted that this port of entry didn’t progress after the 1929 hurricane, or the post-war improvement scheme laid by the Authorities.
On the early stage, the value of sugarcane was 15 shillings a ton. About 80,000 tonnes of sugarcane was produced yearly in these days.
When Labasa City was about to progress, the 1929 hurricane swept by the island and left most buildings roofless.
It was a lot greater than the one which hit the island in 1911, and lasted over three days and prompted heavy floods within the city.
Nonetheless, main enchancment to the city had taken place since 1963, when the sugar cane manufacturing rose to 365,000 tonnes and fetched $9.80 per ton, adopted by 430,000 tonnes in 1964.
Whilst the value later dropped to $7.20 per ton, it didn’t have an effect on the expansion of the city.