Sunday, 31 July 2016

31st July 1816: A pseudonymous writer replies to the Courier about the Ely prisoners affair

The 31st July 1816 edition of the Bury & Norwich Post carried a letter from a pseudonymous writer 'Eliensis' (latin for 'Ely'), which tackled the Courier about their recent editorial about the Ely prisoners. 
Ely, July 27th, 1816.
SIR,—Being one of the Inhabitants of Ely charged by you with a desire to excite a clamour against Government, I think it necessary to notice some of your observations. 
You deny that the unfortunate men just removed to the Hulks had any expectation held out to them by the Judges that their punishment would be limited to 12 months’ imprisonment.—Now, Sir, I beg to inform you, that a Calendar of the Prisoners, with their respective sentences, was signed by all the Judges, and left at the Gaol; and that it expressly states that they are reprieved for 12 months’ imprisonment:—the words are, "Reprieved, Goal 12 months." This, Sir, you are aware, is an official document for the Gaoler, and is open to the inspection the Public. For further satisfaction, I will refer you to a short statement of some of the proceedings during the Assizes, published here (as it is understood) by the Magistrates themselves; and which also states that these men were reprieved, on condition of being imprisoned 12 months. 
As to publicly having been given to the resolutions, it was done solely with a view to satisfy the lower classes here, and the public, that the suspicions which were entertained of the inhabitants of Ely having been instrumental in obtaining an extension of punishment, were wholly groundless. 
Your statement insinuates that these men have misconducted themselves in prison, and that it was necessary to have them removed; this, Sir, I flatly contradict, and I challenge enquiry into the facts. 
You ask, whether the Bishop has not a Palace at Ely?—Yes, Sir, he has, and he is sometimes a resident here; but without any disrespect to his Lordship, I may venture to state, that the Inhabitants present at the Meeting possess better information as to the temper and disposition of the lower classes that his Lordship. They are in the habits of employing the poor, and mixing with them; they know their sufferings, and they contribute to their necessities. Mr. Page himself employs upwards of 150 labourers daily in agriculture. 
The only Magistrates here (now that the Rev. Mr. Metcalfe has retired) are the Rev. Sir H.B. Dudley, Bart. and the Rev. Mr Jenyns, both of whom being Prebendaries of the Cathedral, are only occasionally resident. 
The proceedings of the Meeting, so far from occasioning any irritation, have had the effect of allaying the ferment which had arisen in the public mind in consequence of this unpleasant business.—The poor are now well satisfied that their neighbours take an interest in their welfare; many of them have waited upon the Inhabitants who attended the Meeting, and have expressed their gratitude with tears in their eyes.—There was no intention on the part of the Meeting to excited a clamour against Government.—His Majesty's Ministers were believed to have acted from the purest motives, and with the best intentions. 
Your observations lead me to conclude that they were advised this quarter—it was so suspected. 

Tuesday, 26 July 2016

26th July 1816: The London Courier defends the transportation of the Ely prisoners

An editorial in the 26th July 1816 edition of the London Courier attacked the meeting recently held in Ely which expressed disquiet about the transportation of Ely prisoners:
In common with other Newspapers we have inserted some Resolutions, purporting to have been entered into by the Inhabitants of the Town of Ely, assembled at an inn in that city, Mr. JONATHAN PAGE in the Chair. We read those Resolutions with equal astonishment and indignation. As if their object was to raise a clamour against Government rather than to serve the cause of the persons whose case has filled them with such sympathy, Mr. PAGE and his associates do not wait the event of any application either to the Secretary of State or to the Judges, but give instant publicity to their Resolutions. The trials at Ely are fresh in the recollection of all our readers, who must have admired and applauded the manner in which firmness was combined with forbearance, and justice tempered by mercy. Five of the persons convicted were sentenced to be executed, which sentence has been carried into execution. There were nineteen other persons convicted, whose sentences were less severe: of these nine were left in any Ely gaol, and Mr. JONATHAN PAGE'S first resolution declares that these nine had "an expectation regularly notified to them that their punishment would be limited to twelve months’ imprisonment." By whom? By the Judges? Certainly not—for the decision upon the kind of punishment to be inflicted upon them depended solely upon the PRINCE REGENT his Ministers. In addressing all the prisoners, Mr. JUSTICE ABBOTT said "Such of you whose lives may, perhaps, be saved by the Crown, that power alone on earth that can save them, must not expect that you shall be dismissed from your offences without undergoing some severe punishment."—But nothing in the Justice’s speech pointed out the particular mode of punishment which these nine were to undergo. But did Mr. PAGE or the Meeting enquire whether any circumstances had occurred to render it inexpedient to keep these men in Ely Gaol?—Did they enquire into their conduct while in gaol? Did they take the pains to ask whether the Magistrates had recommended their removal? Were they anxious to ascertain whether the Judges themselves had approved of it? Did they inform themselves whether or not these nine could not be kept on board the hulks as separate from the other prisoners, as they would be in Ely gaol? When transportation is thought to be the proper commutation for a sentence of capital punishment, some term of transportation must by law be specified; but, although such specified term be for seven years, whether the whole of that sentence be carried into execution depends upon the pleasure of the Crown. The REGENT'S mercy may be again extended, and all further punishment remitted at the end of one year. This will probably depend in the present case on the conduct of the delinquents themselves. 
Mr. PAGE and his associates begin with telling us, that the Magistrates refused the Shire-hall for their meeting: but they do not tell us the Magistrates’ reasons, or that they thought the purport of the meeting improper and unnecessary. No, no: their object seems to have been to give instant publicity to resolutions which appear to have been entered into without any enquiry or investigation, and which could not tend to produce any other effect than clamour. The country is tranquil, they say. Were Resolutions like these complaining of the severity of Government, likely to preserve it so? They accuse Government too of acting upon a supposition that the neighbourhood was in a disturbed state, of encreasing the measure of severity upon a mere supposition, without taking any pains to ascertain the real situation of the country. Were there no Magistrates on the spot capable of giving as accurate information as Mr. PAGE and his associates? Has the Bishop of ELY no palace at Ely? Do they mean to represent him as so supine and negligent? The fact we believe to be, that his Lordship, the Magistrates, and the Judges, all concurred in the necessity of removing these persons from Ely to the hulks, where, we repeat, it will depend upon themselves whether a year shall be the limit of their punishment, or not.

26th July 1816: Weather report from the Leicester Journal

THE WEATHER—The continuance of the present very unseasonable weather has been attended with most baneful effects in various parts of the country. Such an inclement summer is scarcely remembered by the oldest person living. The hay generally has been so much injured by the incessant rains that the only alternative left to the proprietor is to convert it into dung for manure. The clover likewise has sustained equal damage with the hay, and has been made the same use of.—This unexpected visitation from Heaven, added to the severe distress to which the country is otherwise reduced, as infused into the minds of the people the greatest apprehension and alarm. It is now to be feared, that not only the clover and hay will experience the ill effects of the weather, but that the corn will be seriously injured by the heavy rains which have fallen. Should the present wet weather continue, the corn will inevitably be laid, and the effects of such a calamity and at such a time cannot be otherwise than ruinous to the farmers, and even to the people at large. The weather, it would seem, is not unseasonable to this country only; for we find that upon the Continent it has been equally unfavourable.

Sunday, 24 July 2016

24th July 1816: Bury Quarter Sessions ends with sentences for machine-breakers and others

The Bury & Norwich Post of 31st July 1816 carried details of the sentences for prisoners tried at the Bury Quarter Sessions for various events that had taken place in east Anglia in previous months:
Bury Quarter Sessions did not terminate till Wednesday afternoon, when the following sentences were passed on the several prisoners, convicted subsequent to our last week's paper being put to the press:— 
Thomas Meers, Geo. Farrant, sen. Stephen Clarke, Mary Jackson, and Richard Rogers, for breaking a threshing machine at Stoke by Clare, the property of Mr. J. Wales, 12 months’ imprisonment each; George Farrant, jun. and W. Jackson, 6 months; George Frost, 3 months; C. Meers, T. Swallow, Wm. Turner, John Deeks, Sarah Jackson, and J. Angel were discharged on their own recognizance. 
Jonas Taylor, Wm. Seeley, and Jeremiah Osborn, for destroying two threshing machines, the property of Mr. Thos. Kemp, 13 months’ imprisonment; and Jas. Seeley, Jas. Howard, and Jas. Burroughs, were acquitted. 
William Edwards, for conspiring with several others with a view of inducing labourers to form themselves into a society for raising their wages, &c. at Wattisham, and elsewhere, 9 months’ imprisonment, and to find sureties for his good behaviour for one year.—No true bills against Wm. Abbott and John Payne, charged with the same offence. 
Robert Leader, Henry Poole, Robt. Durham, John Smith, John Abbott, Wm. Howe, Wm. Halls, for riotously assembling at Rattlesden and breaking a mole plough, the property of Mr. Benjamin Morgan, of Gedding; the said Robt. Leader, (styled commander) two years’ imprisonment in one of his Majesty's gaols, and the other six 12 months each; J. Button, Benj. Buxton, J. Chinnery, T. Durham, B. Steggles, R. Osborn, M. Moore, R. Baxter, Chas. and r. Cobble, Ezekiel Buxton, Mesach Moore, Jas. Southgate, J. Bird, G. King, J. Folkerd, John Steggles, T. Mattock, and J. Clover, 3 months each, or until they find sureties to keep the peace for one year, which they all procured in Court and were discharged; Wm. Richer, W. Nunn, R. Folkerd, and R. Gladwell, pleaded guilty, and were allowed to be at large on their own recognizance; & J. Golding was acquitted.
A week later, the Bury & Norwich Post corrected their coverage of the trial of another incident at Clare with the following information:
In the account of our quarter-sessions last week, we omitted the names of Jacob Halls, Sam. Gridley, Rhinaldo Bareham, and Henry Atherton, convicted of burning a threshing machine at Clare: the former of whom were sentenced to 13 months, and the latter to 9 months' imprisonment.

24th July 1816: Francis Raynes thanks the Home Secretary for sending him £100

Newton near Newark upon Trent.
July 24th—1816

My Lord,

The favour conferred upon me by Your Lordship, in the pecuniary assistance afforded me, I find myself too much relieved by, to omit offering the acknowledgements I feel to be so greatly due from me to Your Lordship: that I did not return at the time I received the Hundred Pounds to express my thanks, I must beg Your Lordship to attribute to my fears of being troublesome, when I knew Your Lordship to be so deeply engaged in Public business.

Though relieved from the embarrassments which immediately pressed upon me, my situation is such, as to compel me, however reluctantly, to entreat the further continuance of Your Lordships consideration, and I trust I am not encroaching too much on Your Lordships goodness, in expressing the anxious hope I feel, that on the return of Sir Thomas Maitland, the means may be found of relieving me, from the principal state of suspense, I have so long endured.

Trusting your Lordship will pardon the liberty I have now taken, I have the Honour to subscribe myself, most respectfully

Your Lordships obedient Humble Servant

Francis Raynes


The Right Honorable.
Lord Viscount Sidmouth
&c = &c = &c

24th July 1816: Bury & Norwich Post editorial about the recent meeting in Ely

ELY, JULY 22, 1816.

We are much concerned to state, that an occurrence which has recently taken place here has occasioned a very considerable degree of ferment in the public mind in this neighbourhood.—It will be in the recollection of our readers that nine of the rioters who were condemned were considered deserving of the lenity of the Crown, and they were consequently reprieved, and an official notification was made to them that their sentences would be commuted for 12 months’ imprisonment.—They continued in Ely gaol until Thursday last, when, strange to tell, a dispatch arrived from the Secretary of State’s Office announcing their Pardon, upon Condition of being transported for 7 years!!! In the course of the day they were sent off for the Hulks, and in order to prevent any unpleasant consequences, the circumstances attending their removal were with great propriety concealed from the public until the following day.—The wives and families of the unfortunate men, as might be expected, are in a deplorable state of distress, and an universal gloom is spread over the inhabitants of the town.—The rich and poor are equally loud in their murmurings, as these men were deprived of the small consolation of being permitted to take leave of their nearest relatives, who indeed imagined that their place of confinement was only to be changed from Ely gaol to Newgate.

We are well assured that the severe examples recently made have produced the happiest effects. The lower classes seemed to have felt the necessity of them, and to be duly sensible of the lenity shewn to those men whose lives have been spared.—In the town of Littleport, we are told, that a reformation of manners is plainly discernible amongst those who were engaged in the late riots. It is, therefore, a matter of sincere regret, that it should be thought advisable to adopt so impolitic a measure, than which, as it appears to us, nothing could be more calculated to make an indelible impression upon the public mind, fatal to the good order and peaceable government of Ely and its neighbourhood.—The prisoners are principally young men of good character, who, it is supposed, had been induced to join in the late riots from the evil examples which were set them.

A very numerous and respectable meeting of the inhabitants took place on Monday at the Club Inn, (the Magistrates having refused to allow the use of the Shire-hall) when several Resolutions were come to upon the business, for which see advt. next page.

Saturday, 23 July 2016

23rd July 1816: John Lloyd sends the weavers' memorial to the Home Office

Stockport 23 July 1816


I have since my return from the Sessions seen Mr. Middleton who says he has not heard any more from the man he alluded to—

I have the honor to inclose a Copy of memorial which I found posted in the Town—and I am sorry to learn that many of the more respectable Inhabitants than the original promoters have been induced to add their signatures:—without reflecting that the spinning of Cotton is what gives employment to nearly half our population; & the prohibition of Twist wou’d have a [tendency] to improve Machinery abroad, and a rivality be the consequence—I have seen some of these Gentlemen and warned others—for it must end in disappointment to those whose hopes of relief are derived from this [illegible]

Joseph Sherwin & Simon Lilly are the two principal weavers soliciting subscriptions of names & Sums of money. They have already received an answer from the Treasury signed by Mr. Lushington that ought to have set them at rest: but I perceive that their object is raising a little money for their own purposes—

I remember upon a former occasion, when news was brought to Town of similar memorials or Petitions failing of their affect there was almost a simultaneous rising of the weavers who went forth to stop people in the County from weaving at all—I apprehended, by the assistance of some of the 6th Dragoons, 62 at one time & by special Constables 60 more—Several of whom were tried at Chester for riot and various Offences, by directions from the Treasury—I have reminded the incautious manufacturers of the evil resulting from a temporizing mode of acting, with Characters so soon inflamed, and so prone to misconceive the true interest of themselves & the nation—

I have [etc]

J. Lloyd

[To] J. Beckett Esqr
&c &c

Friday, 22 July 2016

22nd July 1816: Public Meeting in Ely expresses alarm about the fate of transported prisoners

AT a MEETING of the INHABITANTS of the TOWN of ELY, held at the Club Inn, in Ely, on Monday the 22d day of July, 1816, (the Magistrates having refused the use of the Shire-hall upon the occasion)

JONATHAN PAGE, Esq. in the Chair:

The following Resolutions were unanimously entered into:

That this meeting cannot but observe the sincerest emotions of sympathy and regret, that Nine Persons who were capitally convicted at the Special Assizes lately held here, and who were reprieved under an expectation regularly notified to them, that their Punishment would be limited to Twelve Months Imprisonment, have suddenly been removed from Ely, to the Hulks at the Nore, and that the terms of their Reprieve, contrary to general usage, have been extended to Seven Years’ Transportation.

That this Meeting being apprehensive that His Majesty's Government may have been induced to suppose that the disturbed state of this Neighbourhood required such an additional example of Severity to be made, entertain confident hopes, that upon a faithful Representation being made to them of the present tranquil State of the Country, and of the orderly and peaceable demeanour of the lower Classes of Society, the commuted Punishment recommended by the learned Judges may be adhered to.

That a Letter be immediately addressed the Secretary of State for the Home Department, and signed by the Persons present at this Meeting, earnestly imploring his Intercession with the Prince Regent in Behalf of the said Convicts.

That a similar Application be made to the learned Judges who presided at the Assizes, and who have thrown such distinguished lustre upon their characters by their judicious conduct upon that occasion.

That these Resolutions be signed by the Chairman, and advertised in The Times, Courier, Cambridge, and Bury papers.


Resolved,—That the Thanks of this Meeting be given to the Chairman for his conduct in the Chair, and for his constant readiness to support the Privileges, and promote the Interests and Welfare of the Inhabitants of the Town.

22nd July 1816: Hinckley Magistrates appeal again to the Home Secretary for help

[Sent to the Home Office on 22nd July 1816]

To the Right Honble Viscount Sidmouth His Majesty’s Secretary of State for the Home – Department.

My Lord

We, the undersigned, Visitor, Guardians, Church-Wardens, and Overseers of the Poor, of the Parish of Hinckley, in the County of Leicester;—beg leave, again to address your Lordship, and through you, his Majesty's Government; to inform you, that the Evils, which we anticipated, in our Letter to your Lordship, some weeks since, and now unhappily realised; & that it is totally out of our power to meet the difficulties, by which we are surrounded—

With a View to the Employment of the Poor, a Subscription was lately raised by the Inhabitants, amounting to upwards of 3000£, which will be exhausted, in a few days, from the heavy demands that have been made upon it.

At a Meeting of the Parishioners, held the 17th of this Month—It appeared that, on the lowest calculation, out of a population of six thousand Souls, about one half must have parochial relief; which, at the most scanty pittance, will far exceed 200£ per Week.!

During last month, Levies have been granted, at the rate of three shillings in the pound, which, it is impossible, to collect—And when the “Subscription for “the Employment of the Poor” is expended, which must very soon happen, between seven and eight hundred persons will be thrown out of Work!!!

The Parish of Hinckley contains about twelve hundred families; almost one half of which, it is believed, must have relief; and nearly a moiety of the remainder are, on account of their poverty excused paying the Poor rates; and the other three hundred families, that now pay them, are continually decreasing, from the Stagnation of Trade, & the great Pressure of the Payments.

It must be evident to your Lordship, from this Statement, that we live in a Situation of Painful Anxiety, and Fearful Apprehension of the probable Consequences of such a great number of Persons being without work, without bread, or, the usual means of obtaining it!!!

In this Awful and Appalling Crisis, your Lordship’s Advice is earnestly solicited, and will be esteemed a great favour, by your Lordship’s very obt and humble Servants

[John] Blakeley – Visitor
James Payne}
Samuel Goode} Guardians
Joseph Bassford}
Wm Metham} Overseers
John Ward.}
Wm Ashby} Churchwardens

Hinckley July 1816

Thursday, 21 July 2016

21st July 1816: Luddites sabotage 12 stocking frames at Great Wigston, Leicestershire

The Leicester Chronicle of 27th July 1816 reported another incidence of sabotage of stocking frames that took place on Sunday 21st July 1816, 6 days after a former incident in the same village:
On Sunday night last, the premises of _____ Leach, framework-knitter of Great Wigston, was entered by some person or persons who feloniously carried away some of the most necessary appendages belonging to twelve stocking frames.

Wednesday, 20 July 2016

20th July 1816: Heathcoat & Boden move their business to Tiverton

On the Friday 19th & Saturday 20th July 1816, Heathcoat & Boden moved their equipment from Loughborough to Tiverton in Devon by narrow boat. The Leicester Chronicle of 3rd August 1816 carried an article from the Nottingham Review, most likely the 26th July 1816 edition:
Our conjecture last week, respecting the removal of the broken lace-frames, &c. from Loughborough, has been realised. On Friday and Saturday, three narrow boats, laden therewith, set off on their route to Stourport, from whence the River Severn and the Bristol Channel affords an easy communication with Devonshire, the place of their ultimate destination.—Several of the workmen also embarked for this new settlement, on board the same vessels, and more are preparing to follow them.—Nottingham Review.

20th July 1816: Derby Magistrates fear a Luddite raid on the local arms depot

Derby, July 20th, 1816.—

My Lord,

We addressed a letter to your Lordship, on the 15th of June last year, in which we represented our apprehensions of an attack upon the Government depot of arms, and military stores near this town, being meditated by the Luddites of Nottinghamshire.—We also expressed our opinion, that the ordinary guard, kept at the depot, was in insufficient for its defence, and that the building was insecure; and we took the liberty of suggesting, not only that the regular guard should be increased, but that the building should be further fortified.—

That the Luddites will attempt to possess themselves of the arms in the depot, is no longer a conjecture. Information to this effect (which in other respects has been proved to be true) has been given to the gentlemen, who are engaged in the investigation of the late outrage at Loughbro’: and we understand, that information to the same effect, but thro’ a different channel, has been conveyed to the magistrates of Nottingham.—

It has been seen, in the outrage at Loughbro’, with what facility, and success, the Luddite conspiracy, organized as it is, and comprizing many men, acquainted with the use of arms, and military discipline, can assemble a force, of from 120 to 150 men, and attack a building, of considerable strength, watched & guarded, close to a populous town,—and surrounded by houses. The depot is situated in a very retired situation, on a private road, at a distance of a mile from the town of Derby, and is wholly dependent, upon its own strength, for its security. From the representations which are made to us, it appears to be more easy of access,—and as incapable of effectual assistance, with its present means of defence, against attack, as the factory at Loughbro’.—

Considering the state of the Country, and our military establishment, to maintain a constant guard, by day and night, of sufficient strength to defend the depot against the threatened attack, may be attended with inconvenience to Government.—We therefore take the liberty of repeating our former suggestion, that the regular guard should be increased in a certain degree, and the building so far fortified, as to be rendered capable of resisting an attack, until an alarm can be given, and assistance be brought from the town of Derby.—

Whatever is to be done, should be done speedily.—We therefore most earnestly entreat the immediate attention of Your Lordship, to this most important subject.—

We have [etc]

Danl Parker Coke
J Balguy
Bache Heathcote

To the Rt Honble Lord Sidmouth
His Majesty's principal Secretary
of State for the home department—

Tuesday, 19 July 2016

19th July 1816: Heathcoat & Boden make preparations to leave Loughborough

The Leicester Chronicle of 27th July 1816 carried an article from the Nottingham Review (most probably published on 19th July 1816), about the preparations being made by Heathcoat & Boden to leave Loughborough, following the Luddite attack on 29th June:
We are sorry to find, that Messrs. Heathcote and Boden, of Loughborough, have this week been employing several people in making cases and packing up the fragments of their lace-frames, preparatory (according to general conjecture) to their removal to Tiverton, in Devonshire. All idea seems therefore given up of repairing them and continuing the business at Loughborough. This decision is variously accounted for: amongst the rest of the reasons, some say, that the apathy of the inhabitants of the town in not coming forward in a public manner, to aid in the detection of the offenders, has [given] considerable disgust. Now, whether there is any truth on this, or not, we cannot determine. But, it does appear a little singular, that in December, 1811, when some frames were broken at Sheepshead, the Loughborough Association came forward, on public grounds, and offered one hundred guineas reward, whereas, upon this recent outrage, it has been completely silent.—The removal, however, of the above-mentioned firm from Loughborough, seems likely to create a host of new adventurers there. “All hands aloft” appears to be the order of the day, in talking about forming connexions, making machines, and getting rich in a trice. A Leicester hosier has, undoubtedly, just taken a house at the town in question, and is on the point of erecting, forthwith, an extensive factory of the lace kind, which is expected to give employment, by and by, to a good many of the numerous hands now laying idle; whose droopings spirits are already considerably enlivened by this prospect of better times.—Nottingham Review.

19th July 1816: 7 labourers jailed for assault at Cambridge Quarter Sessions

On Friday 19th July 1816 at Cambridge Quarter Sessions, 7 labourers who had assembled with others at Swaffham Bulbeck in May to demand higher wages were tried. The Cambridge Chronicle of 26th July carried a brief report:
At the Quarter Sessions for this county, on Friday last, William Ullyar [actually Hullier], James Thompson, John Stickwood, Joseph Flack, John Fordham, and William Clements, were indicted for riotously assembling at Swaffham Bulbeck, in May last, and also for assaulting William Manning.—It appeared that about 50 labouring men, amongst whom were the prisoners, assembled together for the purpose of demanding an increase of wages, and that they endeavoured to persuade Manning to accompany them; on his refusal, they assaulted him, and treated him very ill. The evidence of the riotous conduct of the prisoners was not sufficient for conviction, but they were all found guilty of the assault, and the three former sentenced to be imprisoned six months, and the latter three months, in the county gaol.—

Sunday, 17 July 2016

17th July 1816: Stockport Weavers send a Memorial to the Prince Regent


Of the undersigned, being Manufacturers of Cotton Goods, and Workmen, who have been employed in the various branches of that once extensive and important Manufacture,—


THAT Your Royal Highness’s humble Memorialists, who on all occasions have proven themselves His Majesty's most faithful and loyal subjects, are brought to the greatest distress, which is every day becoming more poignant; and unless some means of Relief be speedily devised, one Common Ruin must involve both Masters and Workmen.

Your Memorialists are well aware that many classes of His Majesty’s subjects labor under similar distresses, with this difference,—THEIRS have not long existed—OURS have almost become permanent;—They have had constant Employment and full Wages, until within these few months; but the evils of which Your Memorialists complain, have been growing for upwards of Fifteen Years, till they have arrived at a climax of unparalleled WANT, MISERY, and RUIN!!!

THAT the evils to which Your Memorialists allude, may be ascribed to One great Cause, viz. the Exportation of the half-wrought Material, as TWIST and WEFT. By this traffic, one part of His Majesty’s subjects work to enable Foreigners to do without the labor of the other part; and hence their restrictive measures against the finished Manufactures of your Memorialists. Another evil arising out of the above, is the frequent Reduction of Wages. This system must at all times decrease the value of the Stock on hand, which is sometimes immense.

The consequence is, that the most wealthy of the Masters have either altogether, or partly, declined the Manufacture; whilst others, by repeated sacrifices of depreciated stocks, have become insolvent. Hence many thousands of Weavers are out of employ; whilst those who have work, cannot on an average, earn more than Four Shillings per Wweek; and little more than two years ago, for a short period (Foreign Looms being prevented for some time from manufacturing goods from British Cotton Yarns, owing to their country’s being then the Seat of War) they could earn Sixteen Shillings and sixpence in the same time.

THAT since Peace took place, and the Foreign Looms were set to work again with British Yarns, Wages have been gradually decreasing to their present ruinous state; nor can Your Memorialists see any period when they can be employed again, so long as Yarns continue to be sent out of the Kingdom in such increasing quantities.

THAT the Cotton Manufacture has given employment and support to many Hundreds of Thousands of Persons in the United Kingdom; and Your Memorialists humbly presume, has been of considerable importance in a financial point of view. Shall such a source of our national greatness be removed?—No! 

Your Memorialists trust, with humble confidence, that Your Royal Highness will be graciously pleased to take the above into Your Royal Highness's most serious consideration;

And Your Memorialists will ever pray, &c.

Stockport, July 17th, 1816.

17th July 1816: Four jailed for destroying a Threshing Machine at Hockham, Norfolk

At the Norfolk County Session on Wednesday 17th July 1816, 4 prisoners were jailed for destroying a Threshing Machine at Hockham on 19th May.

The Norfolk Chronicle of 20th July 1816 carried a report about the trial:
John Abery, Jas. Bailey, the elder, Peter Palmer, the elder, and Peter Palmer, the younger, were indicted for having, together with other persons to the number of 100, routously and riotously assembled in the parish of Hockham, on the 19th of May last, and then and there destroyed a certain threshing machine, the property of William Burlingham.—The two latter prisoners pleaded guilty. On the part of the prosecution, it appeared, that the prosecutor, Wm. Burlingham, being nearly blind, was rendered unable to work for his livelihood, but having a little money, he had purchased a threshing machine for the price of 76l. which he used to let out to the neighbouring farmers, at a small profit to himself. That in May last, it had been to let out to a Mr. Wells, in the aforesaid parish, and that on the 19th of that month, being on a Sunday morning, the prisoners together with other evil disposed persons had dragged the machine from off Mr. Wells's premises into the high road, where they completely effected its demolition. The prisoners were proved to have taken an active part in the riot. 
Mr. Cooper, for the prisoners, contended that they had not been proved to have committed an unlawful act, and that none of the witnesses had sworn to their dragging the Machine off, the private property of Mr. Wells, but had all found them in the act of destroying it in the public road. It might therefore be presumed that a number of persons passing that way, had found this clumsy machine very much in their way upon the road, and deeming it a nuisance had destroyed it and removed the materials, which the learned Counsel stated they had a legal right to do. An alibi was attempted in favour of the prisoner Bailey, by calling two witnesses who had seen him six yards distant from the spot where the machine was destroyed, but it was not denied that at the time, Bailey was thus far off, the greater part of the mischief had been effected. 
Mr. Alderson, as Counsel for the Prosecution, strongly rebutted the position of law asserted by the Counsel for the Prisoners, the dangerous and fallacious tendency of which was strongly laid down from the Bench in the Chairman's charge to the jury. 
The prisoners were found Guilty; Abery and Bailey, were sentenced each to imprisonment for one year, in Wymondham Bridewell, and find sureties for their good behaviour for two years further; and Peter Palmer the elder, and Peter Palmer, the younger, who had pleaded guilty, were sentenced each, to three months imprisonment in Norwich Castle, and enter into security for their good behaviour, for one year more.

Saturday, 16 July 2016

16th July 1816: One rioter imprisoned for Norwich riot in May 1816

On Tuesday 16th July 1816, the Norwich Quarter Sessions commenced & the trials included cases of rioting that took place in the city in May.

The Bury & Norwich Post of 24th July reported the following:
Robert Hatton, the younger, was tried for a misdemeanour, in having, together with other persons unknown, riotously assembled in the Market-place of this city, on the evening of the 17th of May last, and acted in a violent and tumultuous manner. On being called upon for his defence, the prisoner threw himself upon the mercy of the jury, who after a few minutes deliberation, returned a verdict of Guilty, but recommended the prisoner to the mercy of the Court. He was sentenced to three months’ imprisonment in Norwich Bridewell.—No true bill was found against Hardy Sheppard, who had been committed for a similar offence.
Meanwhile, the Norfolk Chronicle of 20th July carried the following report:
Robert Hatton, the younger, was tried for a misdemeanour in having together with other persons unknown routously and riotously assembled in the Market-place of this city, on the evening of the 17th of May last, and for having acted in a violent and tumultuous manner upon that occasion. By the evidence of several very respectable persons, it was proved that the prisoner had on the above occasion, distinguished himself amongst the mob by exciting others to assist him in acts of violence, and particularly by endeavouring to frighten the horses upon which the cavalry were mounted, by means of a fireball, at a time when the cavalry were called out to aid the police in preserving or restoring the public peace. On being called upon for his defence, the prisoner threw himself upon the mercy of the jury, who after a few minutes deliberation returned a verdict of guilty, but recommended the prisoner to the mercy of the court. 
He was sentenced to three months present in Norwich Bridewell.  
No true bill was found against Hardy Sheppard, who had been committed for a similar offence.

Friday, 15 July 2016

15th July 1816: Framework-knitting machine parts stolen at Great Wigston, Leicestershire

The Leicester Chronicle of 20th July 1816 reported an unusual incidence of theft that took place on Monday 15th July 1816 as follows:
We regret to state, that a spirit of Luddism has begun to manifest itself in the southern as well as the northern parts of the county. A framework-knitters shop at Great Wigston, occupied by Ebenezer Deakin, was feloniously entered on Monday night last, and several frame and machine pressers, stolen therefrom.

15th July 1816: Amos & Crowther, the 'Loughborough Job' suspects, are released from custody

At noon on Monday 15th July 1816, John Amos & John Crowther - who were arrested under suspicion of involvement in the 'Loughborough Job' 5 days previously - were both released from Leicester Gaol.

There is no information about this event contained in the Home Office papers, but it is worth nothing that the informer's report that seems to have been the basis for their arrests, did not directly implicate them of involvement in the 'Loughborough Job'.

Ironically, the Mayor of Leicester's belief that they would be convicted, was premature at this point.

Wednesday, 13 July 2016

13th July 1816: Report on the weather in the Leeds Mercury

The Weather.—The oldest man living does not recollect such unseasonable weather as we have lately experienced. But this is the case not only in England, but in the most mild and salubrious parts of France, and every other part of the Continent. A letter from Bordeaux, of the 15th June, says:—"We really do not know here where we are. We sit with our doors and windows closed and fire burning as in the middle of winter. It is cold as in October, and the sky is dark and rainy; violent winds accompanied with heavy rain and hail rage round the house our country houses; the low grounds are under water; if we have one tolerable warm day, several cold and rainy ones like the preceding, are to follow. The oldest people in the country do not recollect such a summer. Vegetation suffers, particularly the vines. The time of the blossom should be past, and they have not yet begun to blossom.—This is a bad prospect of the vintage, as the grapes cannot possibly ripen."

Tuesday, 12 July 2016

12th July 1816: The Tory Leicester Journal sees the 'Loughborough Job' as a consequence of 'democratic principles'

On Friday 12th July 1816, the Tory Leicester Journal carried an article reporting recent arrests for the 'Loughborough Job' in which it blamed 'democratic principles' for the growth of Luddism:
In the commitments to the County Gaol during the last week, were two men named Benjamin Badder and John Slater, both of Nottingham, on suspicion of being concerned in the late attack upon Mr. Heathcote’s manufactory at Loughborough.—Jas. Towle, of Basford, near Nottingham, has also been committed to the said Gaol, charged with being concerned in the said offence. Luddism has very justly been attributed to the influence of those democratic and disorganizing principles which have very extensively prevailed among many of the higher classes in the countries where the stocking and lace manufactory is carried on. The charge we believe to be too well founded. Democratic newspapers, and democratic principles, have had a very wide circulation, and many tradesmen and manufacturers, instead of counteracting them, have lent their utmost aid to give them authority. It is true they did not expect to have their frames broken, their property destroyed, and their servants murdered. They indulged their own political theories, and wished to realize their own schemes of reform and revolution on those above them. But they have had experience, in the Luddite system, of their own principle carried into effect against themselves; and if the innocent had not, in many instances, like the present, suffered with the guilty, and that demoralizing principles were encouraged in the lower classes, we should not be sorry for their claims and sufferings. These are the genuine effects of the interest the lower classes in many manufacturing places have been taught by their superiors to take, first, in the French revolution, and then in the character and exploits of Bonaparte.

Monday, 11 July 2016

11th July 1816: John Lloyd admits to the Home Office that the local authority is directly supporting the local weavers

Stockport 11 July 1816


I have the honor now to inform you that I yesterday attended a meeting of some of the principal Gentleman of our Town as the secretary to form a plan for employing the weavers and others not able to procure work for themselves—and we have effected it upon a system that promises good effects—Considering it better to have the work furnished by the Overseers of the poor for the relief necessarily afforded to the families rather than risk an odium against any particular party for keeping down wages—for according to our plan the labour is to be an equivalent for the money paid to them out of the rates—The subscription in aid of those rights to purchase materials which when manufactured are to be sold & the money they produce paid into the fund which is to be deposited in the Bank of messrs Jones Fox & Co in manchester—and little or no loss is anticipated.

[Should] you wish to be further acquainted with the Plan, you can command it from me when more mature—I think we shall be able to manage the people & keep them quiet—no [disposition] to the contrary, I am happy to say, at present appears.

I have got the Overseers into better humour—& I will take an opportunity of printing out the Observations in this days Courier Paper to them.

I have the honor to be

Your very obedient
humble Servant

J. Lloyd

[To] J. Beckett Esqr.
Under Secy of State
&c &c

11th July 1816: The Mayor of Leicester reports the arrest of more 'Loughborough Job' suspects & sends a handbill to the Home Office


I beg to acknowledge the favor of your letter of yesterday, and assure you that the directions it contained shall have every attention in case any circumstances occur to require them

It is very satisfactory to me to hear that Lord Sidmouth is about to send a Troop of Dragoons to be stationed here, and I doubt not his Lordship will participate in this feeling when informed that two Luddites from Nottm who were concerned in the late outrage at Loughborough, were yesterday fully committed to the County Gaol in this place. They belong to so desperate a party, and the weapons which they use for the purpose of mischief are so weighty, that in case of any external attack upon the Gaol might not be strong enough to resist them, and in the absence of Soldiers, the idea of a rescue might present itself

As a County magistrate I assisted at the examination and Committal of these two men, & I fully believe they will be convicted.

It is rather remarkable that their committal only took place yesterday afternoon, and very early this morning a written Hand Bill of which I inclose a Copy was found Posted on one of the walls in this place—It was in course pulled down as soon as the Police got intelligence of it, when a considerable number of Persons were found assembled about it

I have [etc]
Jno Mansfield

Leicester 11 July 1816

[To] John Beckett Esq
&c &c &c

[Handbill posted in Leicester follows:]


Death to the Prince who regards not the distresses of his Subjects—Confusion to his Councels—An Axe for his Ministers—And a speedy overthrow of his Government—

Englishmen arouse and redress your Grievances—

Sunday, 10 July 2016

10th July 1816: Two more men committed for the 'Loughborough Job'

On Wednesday 10th July, John Amos & John Crowther were arrested under suspicion for being involved in the 'Loughborough Job'. They would be sent to Leicester Gaol the following day.

Both men had been named in the informer's report received by the Nottingham Town Clerk on 1st July.

Saturday, 9 July 2016

9th July 1816: The Mayor of Leicester writes again of more Colliers reaching Leicester

Leicester July 9. 1816


Since writing to you yesterday we have had another visit from some Colliers—36 of them drawing an empty waggon made their appearance this morning bringing with them a certificate from some Gentleman of [Uppingham] of their having sold them wage Coals there, of their having [illegible] & being prevailed with to return to their homes at Bilston—The Town Clerk ordered the Body of them to proceed thro’ the Town without delay, & 4 of them remained as a [Deputation] to ask relief of the Magistrates at the [Exchange] this morning They prevented themselves presented themselves about an hour since they pretended to be in distress, to be on their return, & asked relief—We told them that under these circumstances they [should] have the Customary Relief afforded to Vagrants but no more, and that after receiving this if they begged or continued in the Town we [should] immediately apprehend them—We remonstrated with them on the impropriety of their conduct & told them that if they really were out of work, they had a right to require Relief from their Parish & would certainly receive it, & we recommended their immediate return with which they promised compliance & they have left the place. Had they been obstinate our apprehension of them would probably have created some interruption to the peace of the Town and we [should] have felt much more confidence in our ability to perform our duty had if a Troop of Dragoons had been at hand to assist us—Indeed from the unsettled state of the lower orders, & from other reasons I stated yesterday, I should not think myself justified if I did not recommend such assistance if it can be conveniently afforded

I beg to apologise for the haste of this letter, but I am now sitting with my Brother Magistrates, and numerous applications are making to us for relief—

I have [etc]
Jno Mansfield

[To] John Beckett Esq
&c &c &c

9th July 1816: A Nottingham Hosier writes to the solicitor Louis Allsop

Nottingham 9 July 1816

Dear Sir

I am favoured with yours the 6th Inst. and in consequence have made the inquiry (as private as possible) and have the satisfaction to inform you that I have every reason to believe our Luddites have no intention of petitioning the Prince Regent. However should such an event be in agitation in all probability I shall be informed of it—and will immediately communicate what may come to my knowledge—In the interim I would recommend that no notice should be taken of what the cole people have done—Altho the paragraphs you suggest might in some instances have a good effect yet there would not be wanting such men as Blackner and that would affirm that it was the work of government or their agents—& you well know how desirous they are to avail themselves of every opportunity that offers to decry the government.—If contrary to my expectation any stir should be made to petition &c I am most decidedly of opinion that the magistrates here are the proper authorities to put down a effort they may make to march in a body with such petition—& have no doubt but it may be effected.

Yesterday, being the election for the County, by some it was thought a good opportunity for a row; notwithstanding there were a great number of country people in the town all passed off very quiet.

You probably may have heard that Ben Badder & Jack Slater were taken up in the Loughboro business—this was in consequence of certain information given to Mr. Lockett (who is the Solicr on the occasion) who writes "I hope confidently hope & think one or both of them will be identified"—These two men are in the first class of our very bad set

I am
Dear Sir
Yours very sincerely
James Hooley

[To] Lewis Allsopp Esqr

In your letter you say "I have written to you fully this morning on our private concerns"—no such letter has come to hand.

Friday, 8 July 2016

8th July 1816: The Mayor or Leicester alerts the Home Office that Colliers are levying contributions locally

Leicester July 8th 1816


I received here this morning & I hasten to communicate to you the following Events which took place here last Wednesday morning—about 10 oClock on that day the Magistrates received information that a party of 45 drawing a load of Coals were about to pass thro’ the Town on their way to London—the Magistrates immediately sent to them to insist on their not begging in the Town or committing any other illegal act, or they shd be immediately taken up & sent to Prison—This threat had its’ effect, and they passed straight thro’ the Town, quietly & without delay—& when they had quitted the place the magistrates sent them one [shilling] each—Soon afterwards news came that another party was approaching on the same errand—on which a messenger was sent to meet them with similar instructions, and to tell them that no money should be given to them—But this party took a direction to Melton & never came near the Place—and as these proceedings [now] passing before the Stoppage of the Colliers in the neighbourhood of London was known, I help they are for the present at least at an end—On the evening of the day on which the Colliers went thro’ the Town there was a large mob collected & a trifling disturbance, but the meeting was dispersed on the Magistrates taking into Custody the Person who appeared to be the Instigator of it, I find written Notices have been posted in several parts of the Town this morning to invite a meeting of the Stockingers of the Place & its neighbourhood for the purpose of presenting a remembrance to the Magistrates on the state of Trade—Measures are taken to prevent mischief, & I have no fear about it—There is a circumstance which perhaps may deserve your attention, which is that three of the Luddites, (one of them are very notorious fellow) are now Prisoners in the Town Gaol on suspicion of being concerned in the late outrage at Loughboro’

As we are without Troops it is possible an attempt might be made to liberate them—but as far as zeal & attention of the civil Power aided by a Troop of yeomanry can be effectual in preventing mischief I will venture to say it may be depended upon—

I still however am desirous to know if any other kind of procession should be [formed] under pretence of going on in a Body to present Petitions to the Prince Regent, and if it is wished the Magistrates should stop them, in what way they can legally do it—

I have [etc]
W Mansfield

[To] John Beckett Esq
&c &c &c

[Home Office note: ‘appoint Sir N Conant’]

Wednesday, 6 July 2016

6th July 1816: The Leicestershire MP, George Legh Keck, urges an increased reward & protection for informers

Stoughton Grange

My Lord

Since I last had the honor of addressing you I have been requested by The Magistrates now engaged in the Investigation carrying on relative to the late Outrage at Loughborough to enquire whether your Lordship would not feel the propriety of an Offer of [reward] on the part of Government for the discovery of The Offender. At present a reward of £500 is offered by Messrs Heathcote & Co, & a pardon by Government on discovery of The Offenders. It is believed by those who have the best local means of judging that if Government was to make some considerable addition & the previous Offer it would have the best effect; & though I am myself not so sanguine on this head I am convinced that as a proof of anxious exertion on the part of Government it would have a most salutary result.

I am however desired further to represent that in addition to any reward it would be especially necessary that an Informer should receive from Government such employment remote from his ordinary residence as should afford him the future means of Subsistence proportionate to his Character & Abilities, for we well know that his life here would be utterly forfeited. And I need not press this point with your Lordship who will recollect what has already occurred on a similar Occasion; & some employment in the Colonies or elsewhere would be well earned by such a service. & I shall have much satisfaction if by my own means of local Communication I can assist the Good Cause by the development of so dangerous a System of Proceedings.

Your Lordship will be good enough to instruct me as to the answer which will be given to the Magistrates at whose desire I have submitted these Considerations to your Lordship; & I can not conclude without repeating my thorough Conviction that a Cavalry force at Leicester is essentially necessary for the Publick Tranquillity of this district.

Would to God that the severe & general distress now experienced did not offer so wide a field to any mischievous & daring Individuals, but I feel it my duty to state the fact & your Lordship knows that I would not mislead you.

I have the honor to remain

My Lord

Your Ob. Hble. Servt.

[Legh Keck]

July 6th

Tuesday, 5 July 2016

5th July 1816: James Towle is committed to Leicester Gaol for the 'Loughborough Job'

On Friday 5th July 1816, James Towle's time had run out. The man  whose name was by now synonymous with Nottinghamshire Luddism was committed to Leicester Gaol under suspicion of being involved in the 'Loughborough Job' less than a week earlier.

Towle had already been tried, and acquitted, for involvement in Luddism once before, in 1815. He would now face trial again at the forthcoming Leicester Summer Assizes in August.

Monday, 4 July 2016

4th July 1816: Benjamin Badder & John Slater are committed to Leicester Gaol for the 'Loughborough Job'

On Thursday 4th July 1816 Benjamin Badder and John Slater were both committed to Leicester Gaol, charged under suspicion of being involved in the 'Loughborough Job' five days earlier.

Both men had been featured in numerous reports sent to the Town Clerk of Nottingham for some time, with the latest one suggesting they knew and were familiar with the men already arrested for the raid.

4th July 1816: The Leicestershire MP, George Legh Keck, is concerned about nocturnal meetings

Stoughton Grange

My Lord,

I had yesterday the honor of receiving your Letter in which the early establishment of a Cavalry force at Leicester is considered; and I feel it my duty to communicate to your Lordship that nocturnal meetings held between Leicester & Hinckley by very considerable numbers now out of employment have, since I had the honor of last addressing you, led to an application from Magistrates in that quarter for such assistance as our Yeomanry Corps can afford.

I need not assure your Lordship that no portion of this will be wanting: but it is impossible that such assemblages under the present Circumstances of the Hosiery Trade can long continue without some serious mischief as in the Case at Loughborough, & my firm Conviction is that a regular force will tend much to the prevention of those Outrages which, experience has shewn [are] committed are scarcely open to [discovery] according to the Luddite system—

As yet no actual Outrage has occurred, & I do believe that the probability of even those distressed persons who may have been brought to these nightly meetings are not mischievously disposed but rest assured, my Lord, that the Appearance of a Military force is necessary to support the Publick Tranquillity which at this moment is open & [Interruption] at the very suggestion of any daring individual amongst them—

& I need not point out to your Lordship that it is now more easy to deter these folks from Riot, than it will afterwards be to dissolve their systematick cause or to check their practices once seriously engaged in—

We know from past Proceedings what these people are capable of; & I am confident that not a moment should be lost in the most effectual measures for either prevention or counteracting the prevention of their Plans—

I feel this strongly that I should ill discharge my duty if I did not communicate the State of this district to Your lordship & remain

My Lord
your Obt Hble Servt

[Legh Keck]

July 4th

The Visct. Sidmouth

4th July 1816: Henry Enfield sends the latest informer's report to the Home Office

Private & confidential

Nottingham 4 July 1816


I beg to enclose you for the Information of Lord Sidmouth a Copy of the Last Report of our Secret Agent—which I should have transmitted two days ago, but that I have been from home & engaged upon the Subject of its Contents. Badder & Slater you will recognize as old & most Serious Offenders—the communication against them is most important—& I have had a private (secret) Interview & Subsequent Confidential Correspondence with Mr. Lockett (who is conducting for Messrs Heathcote & Boden the Enquiries after the destroyers of their property at the Loughbro’ Factory, & upon whom I can implicitly rely) & imparted to him the particulars of the present Report—they are confirmed by Circumstances which were previously in his possession in Evidence—& the Result will be that these two fellows will be committed for Trial at the Leicestershire Assizes. I have just received an express from Mr Lockett – He says "we are going on very well—Badder & Slater are Sent to Leicester—the wounded man has not yet seen them—but I hope & think that he will identify them—there is however, even without him, Evidence Sufficient to justify their Committment for Trial."

I trust that I shall be excused availing myself of this Letter to beg the Attention of Lord Sidmouth to the Depot of Arms at Derby—I am well informed that it is very far from being in a Sufficient State of Security. Upon a former Commotion here there was a Cry of "Now to the Arms."—The Arms were however placed in Safety – – Should there be any rising of the people on at this time, & they Should know of the weakness of the Depot, they might take measures, the Consequences of which might be dreadful to the Country — I again request to be forgiven for this Intrusion—

I remain
Your most obed Serv.
H Enfield

Sunday, 3 July 2016

3rd July 1816: Luddites sabotage 18 frames in Whitwick, Leicestershire

In the evening of Wednesday 3rd July 1816, Leicestershire Luddites switched tactics from frame-breaking to sabotage. The Leicester Chronicle of 13th July 1816 carried a brief story about the action:
In the night of Wednesday se'nnight, some person or persons broke open three frame work-knitters shops, viz. John Bamkin's, Wm. Braunston's, and _______ Harris's, at Whitwick, near Sheepshead, and drew out and took away the jack wires from eighteen frames, without doing any further damage to them.

Saturday, 2 July 2016

2nd July 1816: Government Reward Notice for the 'Loughborough Job'

Whitehall, July 2, 1816.

Whereas it hath been humbly represented unto His Royal Highness the Prince Regent, that about 12 o'clock on the night of Friday last, the 28th ultimo, a number of persons armed, with their faces blacked, entered the factory of Messrs. Heathcoat and Boden, at Loughborough, in the county of Leicester, Lace-Manufacturers, and after firing at and wounding one of the servants (a guard) in the said premises, they demolished every frame in the building, and destroyed all the lace, and did other damage the amount of ten thousand pounds;

His Royal Highness, for the better apprehending and bringing to justice the persons concerned in the said atrocious outrage, is hereby pleased, in the name and on the behalf of His Majesty, to promise His Majesty's most gracious pardon to any one of them (except the person who actually fired at and wounded the guard belonging to the said premises) who shall discover his, her, or their accomplice or accomplices therein, so that he, she, or they may be apprehended and convicted thereof.


And, as a further encouragement, a reward of FIVE HUNDRED GUINEAS is hereby offered to any person (except as is before excepted) who shall discover his, her, on their accomplice or accomplices therein, so that he, she, or they may be apprehended and convicted thereof, or to any person or persons who shall apprehend and bring the said offenders, or any of them, to conviction, or cause them, or any of them, so to be apprehended and convicted as aforesaid; such reward to be paid by the said Messrs, Heathcoat and Boden.

Friday, 1 July 2016

1st July 1816: Informer's report on the 'Loughborough Job'

1st July 1816

I was here about one o’Clock last night but found you in bed—I was to have been at Loughboro’, but the Job was done sooner than it was intended and there was not any other in Bulwell who had been fixed upon to be there but me and they did not send because they thought they could do without me.—I was at the Goat on Thursday about noon and it was not then determined to do the Job at Loughboro’ on Friday night—Yesterday I was with Badder and Jack Slater at the Goat – there Badder told me that he was at the Job at Loughboro’ and was one of the first that went in.—He also told me that Jack and he talked on the road how they should have liked me to have been there—In the course of the conversation that took place with them I learnt from them that Slater broke 20 of the Machines himself with an Ax 7lb weight—That upwards of 70 were broke he thought—that it was a glorious Job—that there was another Job to do.—Frost’s near the House of Correction – he did not say when – to get my sword in readiness. they expected resistance there.—could not learn when it would happen but I think it will not be long first for they are in such high spirits at their success at Loughboro’—Badder said there were one or two good lads at Loughboro’—This was all secret talk—There was a good deal of open conversation in the company about it and in that conversation Badder said—"I'll be damned if I could not travel 40 miles of a night yet"—Don't know whether Peter Green was at Loughboro’—Badder said Peter had had money given to him—John Crowder was at the Goat—He collects money & I have seen him pay money for them for liquor at the Goat, Glasses round, Badder and Slater also paid for Glasses round—I don't know whether Mitchell or Towle were at Loughboro’—have not heard of the man in custody—Badder said the Arnold Chaps came forward but Hucknall did not—Don't know whether any went from Derby or Beeston, nor how many were there—Badder said they had ten short. He also said that yesterday he & Slater & Crowder were at the Rose, in Nottm and a Constable came and fetched 2 or 3 other constables, one named Wright as I understood, and that he Badder, suspecting they were come to take Slater, said to them "Damn you know you are come to the Straight=down=Coat (Slater) but if you do, it shall be such a taking as you never had in your life" and he told me he had then 2 Pistols in his pockets. We went to the Horse and Chaise and there had Brandy & Gin and Ale, and a woman came and asked Badder to go to Amos's house, which is facing the fields, where there was a set drinking, and Badder Slater Crowder and a little Black Chap whose name I don't know all went away about eleven o'Clock desiring me to call for what I liked and they would pay for it & leaving a full Tankard of Ale & Gin. I went & found the House – listened at the Window and learnt from what I heard that Amos's wife was timid. He told her to hold her foolish noise—There might be about 10 men there—thought I heard Slater & Badder—Don't know who lays the plans. They mentioned another place or two besides Frosts when we were at the Goat. Don't know how many arms they had nor where they are, nor whether any went from Basford.—

1st July 1816: The Mayor of Tiverton request troops to protect Heathcoat's factory there from Luddites

Tiverton 1st July 1816

My Lord

Having received the enclosed requisition from Mr. Heathcoat now residing in this Town who is concerned in carrying on a Manufactory of Lace by Means of Machinery which has of late been so obnoxious at and near Nottingham – and having good reason to apprehend that some violent and riotous attempt may speedily be made to destroy such Manufactory at this place—I beg leave to request your Lordships attention to it & that you will be pleased to give directions for a Troop of Horse to be sent and stationed at this Town for the present as the most likely means of preventing any such unlawful attempts—I have applied to the Commander in chief of this District for that purpose—but am apprehensive that he may not send any Troops without receiving some directions from your Lordship

I am My Lord
Your Lordships
most Obedient Servant
J: Govett Mayor

[To: Lord Sidmouth]

1st July 1816: The 9 'bread or blood' rioters are moved from Ely to Newgate prison prior to transportation

On Monday 1st July 1816, the 9 prisoners convicted of various offences and who had been sentenced to transportation  at the Ely Special Commission were escorted from Ely Gaol to the Newgate prison in London.

Their ultimate destination was said at this point to be Botany Bay.

1st July 1816: John Heathcoat writes to the Mayor of Tiverton, fearing a Luddite attack there

Tiverton 1st July 1816

To J Govett Esqre


A Messenger has just arrived from my Partner, Mr Boden now at Loughborough with the unpleasant information that all our valuable machinery at that place was destroyed on Friday night last by a large party of Luddites, as is supposed from Nottingham, amounting to upwards of an Hundred, with their faces blackened and otherwise disguised – One man who attempted resistance was shot by them and left for dead but hopes are entertained of his recovery—the remainder of our workmen who were placed there for the protection of the property, were compelled to lay themselves down with their faces to the floor and not permitted to rise till the mischief was completed under threats of instant death — by this atrocious proceeding, several hundred people are thrown out of employment and we are deprived of property of immense value the machines being a new invention for making Buckingham Lace, and for which I obtained a patent in the year 1809—and have been occupied ever since in constructing and putting up the same—I have great apprehension of an immediate attack at this place also – in fact I believe the real cause of this mischief being done is principally, if not wholly, owing to the offence given by our removing here and I have been informed upon undoubted authority that the Nottingham lace makers have sworn my entire destruction

I therefore request you will take such steps as you may think best adapted to prevent or defeat any attempts to destroy our Manufactory in Tiverton—

I am
your mo Obed Servt

John Heathcoat