Monday, 1 October 2012

Echoes of our past News...... 1st October 1881

Echoes of our past….. Past News

1st October 1881
Main news -

“Mental and physical darkness in Chesterfield” -

The issue of who was responsible for the lighting in Chesterfield was an issue in this week’s news.   The Corporation and the Gas Company were engaged in a quarrel which would affect the lives of the locals.  The inhabitants of Chesterfield were being urged to “contemplate the future that awaits them in the coming winter”.  The darkness was said to be fine for the burglar and gardens were already being robbed after dark.  The tradesmen would lose business if the streets were not adequately lighted that winter.  Walking the ill-paved streets was highlighted as unsafe to all.

It seems the Council was waiting for a new “electric light” but this light, known as the “English Lamp” had not yet been manufactured.  A recent report had stated that the costs of the lighting was said to actually be cheaper to have 200 electric lights than 200 gas ones.  The reporter was disputing this report as “absolutely erroneous and calculated to miss-lead”. 

To further back the calls for lighting in Chesterfield the accident of a man “named Bradshaw” from Barrow Hill was reported.  He was knocked down by a cab whilst he crossed the road after making purchases in Chesterfield.  He was transported to hospital with a serious scalp wound but was recovered enough the next morning to go home.  He stated that it was very dark and he had not seen the cab until it had knocked him down.

*Stolen grapes –

Yes grapes being grown in Chesterfield!! 

Joe White a Fruitier of South Street was summoned by PC Carline for receiving stolen goods with full knowledge that they came from the gardens of a Mr J K Swallow of Thorntree House, Stonegravels.  The said grapes were not expected to be ripe and ready for picking until Christmas.  Aptly named Mr Thomas Tree, who was the gardener at Thorntree House had noticed that the branches had been cut and bunches were missing.  Being a conscientious employee, off Thomas went into town to find the grapes and on passing the shop window of Joe White the fruiter’s he recognised the bunches as they laid in the window.  Joe said he had bought the grapes from a man that morning for 6d a Ib.  After cross examination the story of Joe was believed but he was ordered to pay the court costs and return the grapes to Mr Swallow.  Poor Joe was seriously out of pocket now.  The Bench reminded him “if there were no receivers there would be far less thieves”.

*Threatening to shoot –

An elderly man named Joseph Spooner was summoned by Mr Edwin Mason of Spital as he had used threatening behaviour against him.  Joseph Spooner had allegedly said “I’ll put a bullet through him, I’ll swing for him”.  Joseph lived at Hollis Lane and rented some gardens from Mr Mason.  Earlier the year on 25th March Mr Mason had given Joseph instructions that he wished to terminate the agreement, but Joseph was adamant that he was due money from Mr Mason.  Joseph’s son William Spooner (a flour dealer on Vicar Lane) was called as a witness and confirmed this was the situation.  He stated that his father had asked Mr Mason for £200, but as he was not willing to pay this Mr Mason had said he would take it to the courts.  When William relayed this to his father he had stated that he would reduce the request to £100 and if he didn’t pat he would shoot him.  Joseph denied this and so he was bound over for the sum of £50 himself and £25 by two others, to keep the peace for 6 months.  Joseph was having none of this – he said he did not have the funds and could not pay his own part never mind repay the two other’s £25 back.  He was told if this was the case he was to go to prison, he should behave himself.

*Serious charge against a farmer at Ashgate –

John Wilckockson a farmer of Ashgate was charged before the Mayor with stealing a shilling from Henry Bestwick a butcher from Brampton.  The two men had been drinking at the Sun Inn the night before when Henry had placed the shilling on the bar to pay for the drinks.  John had picked the shilling up, claiming that it was his change.  He refused to back down and so the police were called and he was taken to the cells.  Appearing the next day before the Mayor, he stated that he could not remember any of the incident; he was released on bail to appear next week for his trial.   John was acquitted of the crime as Mr Bestwick withdrew his prosecution.


*Godfrey May of Brampton to Frances Elizabeth Smith Taylor (third daughter of Mr Benjamin Taylor of Ambergate) 28th September at St Michael’s Church, Crich.

*Frederick Shedd, farmer to Mary Ann Pearce on 25th September at the Parish Church, Chesterfield.

*John Jowett an engine fitter of Ripley to Lizzie Agnes Briggs, daughter of John Briggs Street Lane Ripley on 28th September at the Wesleyan Chapel, Ripley.

*Jane Scrimshaw 69 years of Chesterfield, at Denton, Lincolnshire.

*William Thomas Findley on 24th September at Willington Vicarage, William was the third son of Rev William Findley.  He was 35 years old.

*Jarvis Horabin aged 12 months at Foundry Row, Whittington.

*William Wragg aged 75 years, late gardener of Matlock,  died 24th September at the Union Workhouse, Bakewell.

*Major General Vincent Eyre at Aiz-Les-Bains, France.  Aged 77 years old, late of the Royal Artillery (Fengal)


*All England Cricket team play at Matlock-

Hundreds were said to have attended the weekend’s cricket at Matlock Bridge cricket field, to see the “All England Eleven”; Pinder, Armitage, Foster, Mycroft, Platts, Rigley, Champion, Watson, Bronhill, Sugg and West.  The weather did not behave and having continuously fallen for nearly 48 hours the fans got a “thorough soaking”.  They took on 22 of Matlock’s finest; Moss, Wildsmith, Shipton, Slack, B Gregory, F Barber, Wallis, Cox, Swann, C Gregory, T Barber, Barton, Cooke, Glossop, Jones, Sides, Cursham, Dickens, Else, T Clay, Wilson and J Clay.  The home team put up a good fight but lost having 52 runs to England’s 117.  Eventually rain stopped play, much to the disappointment of the fans.

The 2nd Derbyshire Rifle Volunteer Corps orders for the next week were as follows –

·         Monday, class firing 3pm

·         Thursday, class firing 2pm

·         Saturday, class firing 3pm

Further events planned were –

·         Annual prize firing, Monday 16th October

·         Church parade, Sunday 9th October

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