Wednesday, 29 June 2016

29th June 1816: The MP for Leicestershire, George Legh Keck, writes to the Home Office about the 'Loughborough Job'

Stoughton Grange

My Lord

The Information which your Lordship will of [course] have received respecting the late destruction of the Lace frames at Loughborough renders it unnecessary [to say] more on that lead than that the precise [Arrangement] & dispatch manifested upon that Occasion prove a mischievous Activity of spirit & a System which require the earliest & most decided attention, & under this conviction I beg to recall & your Lordships [Recollection] past [scenes] which originated there a [illegible] – for probably Nottingham may be regarded as the Head Quarters of General Ludd who, it seems is neither dead nor sleepeth – but the General state of the Hosiery Trade is now such as to preclude the Employment of its workmen, & they are consequently doubly open to [reduction] by hundreds at this time.

In truth their distress is very great & as I mentioned to Beckett before I left Town the urgent Expediency of sending some dragoons at Leicester so I can not feel to press this Suggestion on your Lordships earliest consideration as the [essential] means of preventing disturbances which the absence of any force at the moment like the present seems about to merit.

The [Adjutant] of our Yeomanry Corps informs me that he was yesterday requested to be at home in case he should be [wanted], & I need not point out to your Lordship how impossible it would be at this Season of the year to expect any continued [Service] from a Yeomanry Corps without the most serious Sacrifice of their Individual Interests, to which I am confident your Lordship does not mean to expose them—

The Local Authorities in Leicester & [throughout] this Instant are doing all which zeal & prudence can do, but the times are really  such as require not only every measure of [Precaution], but the immediate means of meeting the Evils which at any moment may occur—

Deeply impressed with the [Conviction] I can not but communicate the same to your Lordship & remain

My Lord
Yours Very Truly
[Legh Keck]

June 29th

The Viscount Sidmouth
&c &c &c

This letter can be found at HO 42/151.

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