Friday, 17 January 2014

January 1814: A Nottinghamshire Framework-knitter, George Ward, petitions the Prince Regent for relief

To his Royal Highness, George prince of Wales
Regent of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland—

The humble petition of George Ward Sheweth, Having had the misfortune during the late disturbances at Sutton in Ashfield, Nottinghamshire, to have had two wide frames broke, the one a lace frame and the other a Stocking frame my property which cost me £73—10—and earned by the dint of industry, likewise part of my shop windows broke which has reduced me to the greatest distress, and as such am not able to get the same repaired. How at the same night I apprehended two of the rioters George Jeffries, who impeached and was admitted evidence for the Crown against Benjn Hancock and Gervase Marshall who was transported and John Bradbury with several others that was delivered by proclamation and George Green who I apprehended and was transported and I also identified the person of Robert Poley in prison who pleaded guilty and was transported, Moreover I was repeatedly down at Mansfield before the Magistrates Coll. Need and Major Boothby Esqr. for examination to the above, and on the following March Assize I was nine Days at Nottingham and at Midsummer Assize following I was four days for which I have never recd one farthing for the loss of my time or any thing else, and moreover my shop windows remain boarded up not being able to get the same repair’d, one frame I have got repair’d but the other is in the hands of the framesmith deposited in his hands for payment for his charge for repairing the other, he informs me if he is not immediately payed he will sell it to the best bidder. Having mentioned the above to Coll. Need he tells me he does not act as Magistrate this year being sheriff— and sent me to Thos Maltby Esqr having told the same to Thos. Maltby and Genl Hall the Magistrates for the division they said they was not there at the time or would have seen me righted before now, and Major Boothby is removed from this neighbourhood. Some time back I laid my case before Coll. Elliott, Thos Evans and __ Longdon Esqrs Sitting Magistrates in Nottingham, they all of them told me I was entitled to the rewards offer’d and it was at home I had nothing done for me before this but they could do nothing for me it was out of their division but they gave me a Letter to Mr. Woodcock of Mansfield the Solicitor for him to precure the rewards offerd in your Royal proclamation for me, And Mr. Sculthorp informs me that the rewards are paid into the hands of Mr. Woodcock some time since but I have not as yet recd one farthing for nothing.

In last November where before the Sitting Magistrates in Nottingham Mr. Evans told me that the Secretary of State had gave all the rewards offerd to Mr. Stevens of Mansfield, and that the Committee had closed and they could do nothing for me —

If your Royal Highness will have the goodness to see justice done to an unfortunate poor sufferer who took two of the first Ludds that was taken even one in the very act of breaking my frame (George Jeffries) your Royal Highness will keep me from the parish, and if your petitioner will ever pray—

[To his Royal Highness George Prince of Wales etc]

This document can be found at HO 42/137.

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