Thursday, 6 April 2017

6th April 1817: Major General Lyon reports to the Home Secretary on the state of Nottingham & Leicester during the recent execution and trials

Lichfield April 6—1817.

My Lord,

I have the honour to acquaint your Lordship that the only circumstance of any moment which has been reported to me since my letter of the 22d Ultm. is that considerable apprehensions had been entertained by the Magistrates in Nottingham that a serious disturbance would take place in that town on the 30 Ultm. and on the following day. Every Military precaution was in consequence taken to preserve the public tranquillity and with the recommendation and desire of the Civil power additional Guards were mounted, the Detachment of the 15th Hussars was in readiness to turn out at a moments notice and the men of the 95th Regiment billeted in town were moved into the barracks until the alarm had entirely subsided.—

On the Wednesday morning fears were again entertained that the peace of the town would be interrupted as the execution of a Luddite was fixed for this day and his rescue was expected to be attempted by the populace.—

Arrangements both injudicious and satisfactory to the magistrates appear to have been made by Colonel Elliott Commanding of the 95th Regiment and I am happy to add that in consequence of these, notwithstanding the alarm and apprehension which existed no symptom whatever of disturbance manifested itself.—

The Assizes at Leicester have closed and I have much satisfaction in reporting that during the whole time of their sitting the town has remained perfectly quiet.—

The military were not called in aid of the Civil power in any way whatever excepting partys being required for the escorting of Prisoners to and from the Jail.—

I have the honor to be
My Lord
Your Lordships most
obedient and
very humble Servant

James Lyon
Maj Genl

[To] The Viscount Sidmouth
&c &c &c &c

This letter can be found at HO 42/163.

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