Tuesday, 30 October 2012

30th October 1812: Pwllheli Magistrates ask the Home Office for help after the enclosure of the Commons in resisted

My Lord

We whose names are hereunto subscribed being his Majesty's Justices of the peace for the County of Carnarvon and also Proprietors of Land Interested in the Commons and Waste Lands directed to be divided and inclosed under the Nevin Inclosure Act Beg to inform your Lordship that several attempts have been made to Survey the Commons in the Parish of Pistill But the Commissioners hath been opposed and prevented in doing so by the Cottagers who have encroached on the Commons Assembling together in great Numbers and in a riotous manner pelting those employed and forcing them to quit the Commons. And that in particular on 29th of October Instant the Commissioner attended by two Magistrates and Constables together with several Proprietors and their Tenants, went to the said Commons, where about Eighty of the Cottagers were assembled, and on enquiring their Business there Be declared they were so assembled to prevent the Commons being measured and would never suffer them to be Surveyed and being requested to disperse they refused, whereupon the Riot Act was read and Proclamation made and the purport and Consequences explained to them But they continued together for upwards of an Hour, during which time they were very riotous and threw sods frequently at the magistrates, the Commissioner, His Clerk and the Constables and Ultimately obliged them to leave the Commons.

Warrants are in the Hands of the Constables to apprehend the most forward and violent of the rioters, but they cannot Execute them, the rioters immediately assembling and threatening the lives of the Constables if they dare approach them. The rioters meet at the Sound of Horns which are placed at different stations, so that great Numbers, can be collected in a short time—

We have therefore to request your Lordship will be pleased to apply immediately to his Majesty's Government for a Detachment of Cavalry to be sent here to assist the Civil Power in preserving the Peace, and the Commissioners in carrying the Act into Execution, without whose Aid the one or the other can be Effected—

We have [etc]

Richard Edwards
William Roberts
Hugh Rowlands

Pwllheli 30th
October 1812

This letter can be found at HO 42/128.

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