Thursday, 26 May 2016

26th May 1816: John Lloyd sends a circular to Stockport Manufacturers, urging preparations for disorder

Rumours are kept afloat of unlawful [Combinations] & intended meetings of the dissatisfied workpeople. The weavers have petitioned the parliament & their Delegates have just received Letters from the members, who give them no hopes of relief from that quarter — nor cou’d it reasonably be expected.

I do not observe at any serious Check has been put to the Riots & Disorders that prevail in different parts of the Kingdom; on the contrary, I am sorry to see, by the papers this morning, that, in Norfolk, the worst possible example & [encouragement] have been given to the malcontents, by want of courage & firmness in those who undertook to oppose the violence of a lawless mob.

Rather than remain longer Indifferent to the Rumours, & what is actually going forward, the better policy wou’d be to prepare to prevent mischief; and I will venture to suggest that the "honest men active" [should] adopt plans of Operation in case of need & communicate from time to time to some one person such information as may be important to the peace of the Country.

Special Constables [should] be sworn-in & places of rendezvous fixed upon & the first symptoms of Disorder suppressed.

I shall be glad if you will call upon me at any my Office at any hour from 3 to 8 of the afternoon tomorrow—

In this affair I need not point out the necessity of secrecy & good faith

J Lloyd

Stockport [illegible] 26 May

This letter can be found at HO 42/150.

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