Tuesday, 21 February 2012

21st February 1812: Town Clerk of Nottingham writes to the Home Office expressing doubts about the Frame-breaking Bill

Dear Sir,

I will write to you by Sunday Morning’s Post a full Detail of the Sentiments we entertained of the new Bill for increasing the Punishment of Framebreaking to Death which meets with but few approve it, & I fear will it do not operate powerfully by Terror be the means of preventing us from gaining a great deal of information by Indisposing all Ranks from the cooperating in the Detection Prosecution & Punishment of the Offenders—

I am sorry to say that five Frames were broken in the Town this morning at five O'Clock in Broad Lane Paddock after the Military Guard had left Taken by setting a Ladder & by that getting in at the Window. The frames are the property of the Possessor & were broken against his Guard & under every Attempt on his part to alarm the Neighbourhood. There were very many Persons engaged in the Outrage. The Post is going out & I am forced to conclude.

Yours very truly

George Coldham

Nottm 21st of Febry 1812

The Bill has much enraged the Framebreakers & this I understand it You as I fear much more mischief will be to Shew that they will not be terrified by it.

This letter can be found at HO 42/120.

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