|Title||The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists|
that time the Electric Light Works had been built and the war against the gasworks carried on vigorously. After several encounters, in which they lost a few customers and a portion of the public lighting, the Gasworks Bandits retreated out of the town and entrenched themselves in a strong position beyond the borough boundary, where they erected a number of gasometers. They were thus enabled to pour gas into the town at long range without having to pay the coal dues.
This masterly stratagem created something like a panic in the ranks of the Forty Thieves. At the end of two years they found themselves exhausted with the protracted campaign, their movements hampered by a lot of worn-out plant and antiquated machinery, and harassed on every side by the lower charges of the Gas Coy. They were reluctantly constrained to admit that the attempt to undermine the Gasworks was a melancholy failure, and that the Mugsborough Electric Light and Installation Coy. was a veritable white elephant. They began to ask themselves what they should do