Sunday, 20 May 2012

20th May 1812: More witnessess give evidence before the Select Committee on the Framework-knitters Petitions

On Wednesday 20th May, two more witnesses gave evidence before the Parliamentary Select Committee on the Framework-knitters Petitions.

Gravenor Henson resumed giving evidence from the day before. Henson played to the gallery to the extent that he compared the English Trade with the French Trade, saying that the revolution had helped the trade in England because many frames there were destroyed as part of it, and also went on to insert nationalism into his evidence by stating that French knitters were inferior to English ones.

In addition, Henson spoke of the need for the regulation of frame-rents to a fixed percentage of their value, in order to drive out the speculators, and also the prohibition of single-press lace and two-course hole. He laid the blame for the diminution of trade squarely at the feet of the 'fraudulent' quality of work & bad practices.

John Wallbank, a framework-knitter from London was next to give evidence. He stated that he was in full agreement with all that Gravenor Henson had had to say, and noted that the fleecy hosiery trade in London could not compete with the articles being sent from Nottingham, which were being sold for such a low price, but were of totally inferior quality.

This has been summarised from the Report from the Committee on the Framework-Knitters Petitions, 1812 (247) 2, pp.43-46.

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