Saturday, 10 March 2012

10th March 1812: Town Clerk of Nottingham to Major General Hawker

10th March, 1812


The Mayor and Aldermen of this Town having directed me most urgently to solicit of the Secretary of State for the Home Department that the Troops might not be removed from the Town during the Assizes.

From the nature of the Information they have received it appears to them that the Town cannot be deemed safe during the Assizes without the continuance of the present nightly Patrole and without any adequate military guard to be stationed at the Town Gaol. The Magistrates are convinced that if the Troops are removed the Prisoners will be insecure and the very extensive property in Stocking Frames existing in the Town, exposed to immediate and very extensive mischief.

In answer to this application they have understood from the Secretary of State that previous to his entering into the Town this matter will enter into the consideration of the Judge, Mr. Justice Bailey but as they fear that in the meantime you may feel yourself embarrassed by the usual practice of removing the Troops previous to the Assizes by directions from the War Office, I am desired most explicitly to declare to you in the name of the Magistrates that they do not consider the Town and the immense Property in Frames lodged in it and which has accummulated, from the supposed insecurity of the surrounding Country and from the distressed state of the Trade to a most enormous extent in a state of least safety without the continuance of such a force in the Town; as you shall consider adequate to keep up the present nightly patrole and to supply a strong Guard at the Town Gaol on the approach and during the continuance of the Assizes, and they most earnestly entreat and solicit that you will immediately direct a Guard to be placed at the Town Gaol and that until the Judge shall peremptorily decide upon the continuance or removal of the Military during the Assizes, you will have the goodness to represent to the civil and military authorities with whom you may correspond on this subject, the opinion which the Magistrates have thro’ me taken the liberty of expressing to you, and which, they have reason to believe does not differ very materially from the Judgement which your own observations lead you to form on this subject.

I have [etc.]

Geo. Coldham,
Town Clerk

This letter can be found at HO 42/121.

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