Wednesday 11 January 2012

11th January 1812: Nottingham County Magistrates request witness protection from the Home Office

County Hall
11th of Jany 1812


The destruction of Stocking frames, and other violations of the law, still continue in the Neighbourhood of Nottingham, with almost unabated violence. John Braithwaite & Elizabeth his wife, lately residing in Basford near Nottingham, have given direct evidence against Wm. Carnell & Joseph Maples, both of Basford, that they, with many other persons at 8 o'Cl in the Evening on Friday the 3d of January broke open the house of John Braithwaite, and broke several Frames therein and took away certain parts of these Frames. In consequence of such evidence Wm Carnell and Joseph Maples have been committed for trial at the next Assizes. As the lives of the Witnesses have been threatened, they been brought into the Town of Nottingham for security, but considerable apprehensions have been entertained that as their evidence may lead to the conviction of the Offenders their lives cannot be deemed secure till the time of their giving their testimony. We therefore take the liberty as acting Magistrates for the County of Nottingham of submitting to your consideration whether these persons may not with propriety be conveyed to London or some other place of security in the discretion of the Justices, and at the expense of Government till the time when their evidence will be required; and whether the Justices might not have the same discretionary power in the case of other witnesses similarly circumstanced.

Sir your most obedient
hum. servants

Charles Wylde
Fran. Evans

This letter can be found at HO 42/119.

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