Monday, 28 November 2011

28th November 1811: John Beckett of the Home Office to Samuel Smith MP

28 Novr. 1811


As Mr. Ryder happens to be very much engaged today, he has directed me to return you his best thanks for your letter of yesterday marked ‘Private’ relative to the disordered state of the neighbourhood of Nottingham. Mr. Ryder had flattered himself that the assemblage of the Military Force lately collected in that Quarter would have had the effect of overawing the fomentors of the disturbance you allude to, and he is much concerned to find from your letter that there is reason to believe that they are still using their efforts to continue them.

With respect to your suggestion of sending down Bow Street Officers, I am to inform you that it has not been usual to resort to this practice except in some particular cases attended with aggravated circumstances, where it appeared of importance that assistance should be afforded for the purpose of bringing an offender to Justice. In the present case, Mr. Ryder apprehends their duty would be of too general a nature to admit of his taking the officers away from their regular duty for an indefinite time. He hopes therefore that the Police of Nottingham, which you mention is on the alert, may eventually be able to discover the parties who have been most instrumental in the late riots, and that the Magistrates may be able to punish them as they deserve. You will no doubt have learnt during your stay at Nottingham that the General of the District at Lichfield has been desired to attend to any representations which he may receive from the Magistrates near Nottingham, and to afford them in case of need any assistance in his power.

I am [etc.]

J.S. Beckett
The letter can be found at HO 42/117.

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