Some Selected Reports from The Windsor and Eton Express
20th August 1842
The theatre this week has been very scantily attended, notwithstanding the good selection of pieces and the excellence of the performances. The new laughable farce of "Bathing" has been performed twice, and was highly applauded each time.
The performances on Thursday evening were under the patronage of her Royal Highness the Duchess of Kent. It will be seen by the advertisement that there is an abundance of amusement promised for next week. On Monday Mr.Mulford takes his benefit, and we hope he will be well patronized, for he is a really talented and excellent performer.
Accident to the Mail Driver
On Saturday night an accident occurred to the mail driver from Windsor to Slough, which was nearly attended with fatal consequences. He was driving the mail cart to Slough, at a late hour of the night, and he was not aware that the turnpike gate in the Slough-road was only partially open, when the vehicle struck against the gate, by which the cart was capsized, and he was thrown out and much bruised. He was, however, enabled to proceed to his destination.
Narrow Escape from Drowning
On yesterday evening week, one of the privates of the 15th regiment of foot, stationed at Windsor, while bathing at a place called Stoney-hole, near Clewer, with three or four others of the same regiment, got out of his depth, and sank. A man named Tubbs, happening on his clothing, dived into the water after him, and fortunately succeeded in bringing him safely on shore. The soldier was insensible, but by the attention of those about him he partially recovered, and was afterwards taken to the military hospital, since which time he has got quite well.
Another Narrow Escape from Drowning
On Saturday last, a bargeman on the river fell overboard, some little distance above Windsor bridge, and would have been lost had it not been for the courage of a gentleman visiting at the Rev.Mr.Knyvett's, who , with Mr.Knyvett's sons, were in a skiff and witnessed the occurance. The gentleman instantly threw off his hat and coat, and dived after the bargeman, who was greatly his superior in weight, which made the task the more hazardous; but the gentleman eventually succeeded, highly to his courage, in reaching the man, and taking him into his skiff, whence he was taken ashore, and his life preserved.
A Third Narrow Escape from Drowning
On Saturday evening last,as two of the Eton Collegians , sons of Mr.Hammond, of Eton, and Mr.Williams, of the Cloisters, Windsor, accompanied by a gentleman named Burton, were returning down the stream in a punt from fishing, they discovered a man named Banks in the water near Bargeman's bridge, sinking, having got out of his depth while bathing and not being able to swim. Mr.Burton instantly jumped into the water to save him. A charity boy , named Maskell , had just before, though only 13 years of age, rushed into the water to Bank's assistance, but was dragged down by the struggles of the unfortunate man , and both would probably have been lost, but for Mr.Burton, who, without waiting to take off his clothes, dived to separate them, when Maskell swam ashore, much exhausted, and Mr.Burton, after once sinking, rose with the then drowning man in his grasp, and this being watched for by the young gentlemen who were in the punt, they were immediately taken into it; thus, no doubt, Mr.Burton was the means of saving two lives; and for his own preservation he is indebted to the judicious conduct of the young gentlemen, particularly to the son of Mr.Hammond.
The Bachelors Revel
On Wednesday the annual Revel of the Bachelors took place in the Bachelors Acre, that day being chosen as commemorative of the natal day of her Royal Highness the Duchess of Kent, and in honour of her Majesty's accession to the throne. The weather was remarkably fine, the company large, the sports good and numerous, the arrangements made by the committee excellent, and everything combined to render the Revel attractive and entertaining. The railway trains were in good requisition, and numerous visitors were conducted by that means from London and other places to witness the rural sports, now alas fast falling into disuse throughout the country, but which are kept up in Windsor with all their former vigour by the "Bachelors" of the two towns.
At the early hour of seven o'clock the firing of a royal salute from some artillery in the Acre gave "note of preparation," and next the bells of the churches pealed forth their merry chimes in honour of the day. At nine o'clock took place the usual procession of the Bachelors and others, proceeded by a band of music, with handsome banners, and smart cockades in their hats, headed by Simms the gaoler, in the character of a now almost defunct functionary - a parish beadle, with cocked hat and staff. After perambulating the town they returned to the Acre, and the sports of the day commenced with a match at cricket between youths under 15 years of age,
[…..] and a bat to be given to the boy obtaining the most runs, and the boy bowling the most wickets. These were given by Mr.Thompson. After the match the boys were entertained with dinner in the Bachelors tent. Then succeeded boys to climb soaped poles for a beaver hat, four boys to unwind a string six yards, backwards, for a fustian jacket; back swording (or single stick) for a purse of 30s, the second best 20s. In this contest the first prize was won by the celebrated Simon Stone, of Somerset. There were several excellent bouts, particularly the finish between Stone and Arlot, a man who on a former occasion succeeded in breaking Stone's head. The set to between these men was of the most spirited and exciting character. Then came the wrestling, which was equally exciting. Webber, who has frequently appeared on the "Windsor Stage," and is well known in the London "ring,"
again carried off the prize of 30s, not one of the others, although some of them good ones, having the slightest chance with him .In the foot hurdle race, the best of heats for 20s, eight entered. It was won, after two rather indifferent heats, by a young man named Lovegrove. Gough, the Ascot Shepherd, entered for the race, but the others declining to contest it with him he received a consideration to withdraw.
The rest of the sports consisted of six men, blindfolded, whipping a ball out of a hole for a shooting jacket; a gingling match, for a smock-frock; a game of football by men with their legs tied; the performances of Ramo Samee, the Indian Juggler; and a rural dance. The day concluded by a brilliant display of fireworks, which reflected the greatest credit on Chevalier Southby, who had direction of them. The excited the highest approbation of the immense concourse of persons at that time assembled.
The stalls, booths, and shows in the Acre were numerous, and we believed well patronized.
In addition to the subscribers to the expenses of the revel we have already announced, we perceive the Earl of Jersey has given one guinea, the Officers of the 2nd regiment of Life guards six guineas, and Philip Pusey, Esq., M.P., one pound.
An Insane Intruder Into Windsor Castle, And His Committal To Bethlem Hospital
On Monday night a man was discovered and apprehended in Windsor Castle under suspicious circumstances, and he was taken to London on Tuesday morning by Mr.Steed, the inspector of police on duty at the Castle, and immediately conveyed to the Home-office, where he underwent a lengthened examination before Mr.Hall, chief magistrate at Bow-street, in consequence of the recent act of parliament for the better protection of her Majesty's person, no privy councillors attended the inquiry; but, nevertheless, as in the cases of Bean, Francis, and Oxford; the most strict injunctions to silence were given. From the private manner in which the prisoner was conveyed to the Home-office, it was not known in the neighbourhood that any investigation of the kind was going forward.
The prisoners name is Thomas Quested; he is a native of Maidstone, Kent, and he is 40 years of age, and a labouring man.
It might be here stated that Monday evening was not the first time the prisoner had visited the castle; for it appears that on Saturday he was found asleep in one of the out offices, and ordered off. From the mode and manner in which he answered the questions put to him it was supposed that he was suffering under some aberration of intellect; and there is not the slightest reason to suppose that he was in any manner connected of acting in concert with other individuals.
Mr.Lavies, the surgeon, of Tothill-fields prison, and Mr.Wakefield, surgeon of Coldbath-fields prison, were sent for to the Home-office during the inquiry, in order to ascertain the state of the prisoners mind. He fancies himself, and persists in it, to be a "lord," and said that he was told, if he went to Windsor Castle, and saw the Queen, he would obtain a pension necessary to maintain the rank and station in which he ought to move. He states that, on Saturday, he did not see any one of consequence at the castle; therefore, he did not object to leave.
There were only two witnesses examined at the Home-office on Tuesday (besides the medical gentlemen), viz., Inspector Steed, and one of the gentlemen porters of the royal household. At the conclusion of the inquiry, which was rather a protracted one, the prisoner was remanded to Tothill-fields gaol, and orders given that he should be brought up again for further examination at the Home-office on Thursday, at two o'clock. He insists upon it that his only object in intruding himself into the castle was to obtain a pension suitable to his rank, and that he had no malicious or felonious intentions. On the strictest search being made into the bundle the prisoner carried, and the minutest examination of his clothes, nothing whatever could be discovered of a dangerous or even a mischievous tendency.
The prisoner was brought to the Home-office shortly before two o'clock on Thursday in a cab, accompanied by Mr.Gilsby and one of the turnkeys of Tothill-fields prison. He jumped out of the cab on its arrival at Whilehall, and appeared in excellent spirits, holding up his bundle, which was composed of some old things tied up in a blue cotton pocket handkerchief, and exhibiting it in a manner as if he supposed that he had obtained a triumph.
Since the prisoner's committal to Tothill-fields prison he has behaved remarkably well, quite calm and collected, except when his title to the peerage is disputed, and then he most clamourously asserts his supposed right.
Mr.Hall, chief magistrate of Bow-street, arrived at the Home-office before two o'clock, and after a short delay the examination commenced. Application was made to the worthy magistrate for those belonging to the public press to be admitted to the inquiry, but Mr.Hall, in the most polite and courteous manner, informed them that it would be contrary to the established rules of the office if he was to comply with the request. Consequently it was not granted. The following, however, is the substance of what has taken place:-
The prisoner was on Thursday visited at Tothill-fields prison by Mr.Lavies, surgeon, of King-street, and Mr.Wakefield, surgeon to Coldbath fields prison, and closely examined as to the state of his mind. He appeared perfectly cool and collected on every subject but one - viz., that he had a title to the peerage. The medical gentlemen inquired what title it was that he thought he had a right to, when he replied, with an air of dignity, "I am Lord Godolphin D'Arcy, and every one knows it." On being questioned at the Home-office by Mr.Hall, the unfortunate individual persisted in stating that he was Lord Godolphin D'Arcy, that he was unjustly kept out of his right and that his visit to Windsor was merely to obtain those rights from the Queen; and he went on to state that all the way down the road to Windsor the people saw as he passed that he was a Lord, and knew well that he had a right to the title which he claimed.
An uncle of the prisoner, who resides in the neighbourhood of London, and holds a situation in the Dockyards at Woolwich, was in attendance at the Home-office during the inquiry. This person, who is a respectable man, informed the magistrates that the prisoner unfortunately was not the only one of his family who was suffering under an aberration of intellect. He had a sister who was insane; that the prisoner was an agricultural worker, but for a length of time had entertained the strange delusion that he was entitled to the peerage - that he was, in fact, Lord Godolphin D'Arcy.
When the prisoner was observed in the castle , he was fast-asleep on a couch in the footman's waiting room; and when asked how he obtained admittance, he said that he followed a potboy, which statement he repeated on Thursday.
It appears that the unfortunate man left Maidstone, or the neighbourhood, on Friday, and walked to Woolwich, where he stopped a short time, and then proceeded to Windsor, going direct to the castle, when, from fatigue, he fell into a sleep in one of the out-offices, and was ordered off. He then went back to Woolwich, but on arriving there he felt so convinced of his rights that he retraced his steps, and obtained in a most extraordinary manner an entrance into the castle to the footman's waiting room, where he was apprehended.
There was no further evidence adduced on Thursday as to the facts attending the prisoner being found in the castle. The inquiry related solely to his state of mind. When he was asked if he did not think he was labouring under a delusion in thinking himself a lord, he replied "No, certainly not; I am a lord." He was then asked if the medical gentlemen told him he was labouring under a delusion on the subject, whether he would not believe them, and give up his claim to the title he supposed himself heir to. The prisoner replied that he would not give up his claim; the gentlemen did not know as much on the subject as he did; he was Lord Godolphin D'Arcy.
After a lengthened examination no doubt remained but that the unfortunate individual was insane, and the medical gentlemen signed a certificate to that effect.
He was then conveyed in a cab to Tothill-fields prison, and an order made out for his committal to Bethlem Hospital, and as soon as it received the signature of the Home Secretary , the prisoner was removed to that place of confinement, there to remain during her Majesty's pleasure.
Windsor Police - Monday
This being the day to grant licences to persons to sell game, the following were granted:- To Messrs.W.Pelham and Cave, of Thames-street; Mr.James Walters, of High-street; Mr.R.Stapleton, of Peascod-street; and Mr.W.Finch, of Thames-street.
[Before John Clode, Esq. (Mayor), and Robt. Tebbott, Esq.]
Samuel Gough was charged with assaulting Caroline Smith. The complainant stated that she lived in a narrow lane leading to the bottom of Peascod-street. On Tuesday last the defendant came to her house, abused her and shook his fist in her face, threatening to knock the front of her head in and to "mug" her. This was the assault of which she complained.
The magistrates asked if the defendant assigned any reason to such conduct.
Complainant - Why, gentlemen, it appears that my dog went into his house and stole the wing of a fowl, but I would rather have paid for it than he should have abused me so.
The defendant said that the fact was that he had had a fowl cooked for his wife who was ill, and who had eaten a portion of it. The remainder was placed on a table preparatory to putting it by for his wifes supper, but one of the complainants dogs came in and stole it. He went to remonstrate with her, but he denied using bad language, or putting his fist in her face.
The magistrates thought the case a very trivial one, and advised the parties to retire and settle the matter between them without incurring farther expense.
This they did and the summons was dismissed, the defendant paying the costs.
The defendant then complained of the complainant keeping as many as six or eight dogs at her house, and sometimes as many as ten, without feeding them herself, but allowing them to plunder the neighbour's houses. She bought nothing for them to eat, and she never paid any tax for them. He wished to know if that was allowed.
The magistrates said the best way would be for the defendant to give information to Mr.Hyde, the surveyor of taxes, or Mr Cook, the collector, as to the number of dogs Mrs.Smith had and for which she paid no tax.
This he proceeded to do, and the parties left the court.
[Before John Clode, Esq. (Mayor), Robt.Tebbott, Esq., and Sir John Chapman]
George Croxon was charged with picking the pocket of John Winnett, on the preceding day at the Revel.
The prosecutor on the preceding evening was in one of the booths in the Acre, where the prisoner also was. The prisoner was seen to slip the prosecutors handkerchief from his pocket and hand it to another man.
The prisoner was immediately given into custody. Simms the gaoler, said he saw the prisoner in the company of two other men, and suspecting them, he kept a good watch upon their movements during the day.
He was fully committed for trial.
Weaver Clayton was charged with stealing a coat and a bonnet, the property of William Pike, from his booth in the Acre.
The complainant, who resided at Chertsey, had a booth in the Acre, and at about a quarter part 12 o'clock at night he missed his coat and a bonnet. At about half part one o'clock the prisoner was seen by Clarke, the policeman, in High-street, with the property in his possession, and took him into custody.
The was fully committed for trial.
Mr.George Chapman, surgeon, attended before the bench for the purpose of enquiring what had been done in the case of the two policemen; Brown and Horton, who had been charged with assaulting a man named Gray.
It may be remembered that the case came before the magistrates on Tuesday the 2nd, and Thursday the 4th last, and was reported in our paper of the 6th. It appeared that the two policemen had most violently , and without any appearing provocation , assaulted Gray by striking him on the head and arms with their truncheon's, knocked him down, and while still in a state of insensibility from the injuries he received, dragged him along the street. The evidence so clearly proved these facts, and the bench suspended the policemen from duty, and referred the case to the Watch Committee for investigation.
Mr.G.Chapman wished now to know to what decision the Watch Committee had arrived, because he had heard that the two policemen had been almost immediately reinstated in their duty. I was a case that called for further investigation, for the poor man Gray had been very grossly ill-used. He (Mr.C) had attended him professionally , and could testify to the injuries he received, and there were several witnesses who could prove that the assault was a very gross one. He wished to know if the bench would pass over such a case without farther enquiry.
The Mayor said the watch committee had investigated the case, and they had come to the conclusion that the violent conduct of the man Gray, fully justified the police in what they had done, and therefore they ordered the latter to return to their duty. He (the Mayor) did not attend the committee, but he had been informed that that was the result.
Mr.George Chapman complained of this decision as exceedingly unjust, and said that the case ought to be further enquired into.
Sir John Chapman informed him that he need not consider the case as decided, because if Gray thought proper he was still at liberty either to prefer his charge again, or to indict the policemen at the sessions.
Mr.G.Chapman then left, intimating that the case should undergo further enquiry.
Eton Police - Wednesday
[Before C.Clowes, Esq., and G.J.Penn, Esq.]
Thomas Dover, of Denham, was charged with assaulting Thomas Edwards, a little boy, on the 6th inst.
It appeared that on the above day Mr.Dover caught the boy pulling several ears of wheat out of a stack; and having frequently sustained losses by such petty and mischievous depredators, he gave him a good thrashing with his stick.
The bench did not doubt that Mr.Dover had sustained losses in the way described, but he had no right to take the law into his own hands. Under the circumstances, however, they only fined him 1s, and 18s costs, which he paid.
George Fellowes was charged with assaulting Thomas Laddyman, at the Swan Inn, Denham, on the 8th inst.
The parties it appeared were drinking in the above house, and quarrelled about a pot of beer, when the defendant struck the complainant several times, and cut his head.
The defendant was fined 5s and 14s 9d costs, and in default of not paying the money in three weeks, to be committed to prison for one month.
William James was charged by Robt.Gibson with being beastly drunk in Eton and creating a disturbance. He was an old offender, and in order to check his career was fined 5s and 8s costs. He was allowed a week to pay the money, and if not paid within that period, to be placed in the stocks for six hours.
Hannah Hickman, of Stoke, was charged with assaulting Anne Lever. It was a merely wordy quarrel between the parties, and without actually coming to blows. The bench dismissed the case, ordering the parties to pay the costs between them.
George Portsmouth was charged with assaulting Anne Steers. This case, however was similar to the preceding, and it was disposed of in the same way.
John Bone was charged by William Haines, of Iver, with stealing some apples on the 13th inst. He was committed to one months hard labour.
Elizabeth Ware and John Stubbs were charged with stealing a quantity of water-cresses at Wyrardisbury, the property of Mrs.Rachel Baker, and cultivated on her ground. They were fined 1s damages, and 16s expenses, and allowed until the next bench day to pay the money.
Wm.Fish was charged with stealing from his master, Mr.Roger Tolladay, boat-builder, at Eton, 500 leaves of gold and a pair of sculls, on the 3rd of August. The prisoner was apprehended by Clarke one of the Windsor police, to whom he said he had seen his master, and had promised to work out the value of the articles. He was fully committed for trial.
Mr James Parker, assistant overseer, and Mr.John Larkin, constable of Iver, reported to the bench that a distress warrant had been issued against the goods of John Hughes, of that parish, for non payment of 1s poor-rate, and 5d 6d costs; that they found no goods, and that therefore the parish officers prayed for a warrant of commitment against Hughes, which the magistrates granted.
During the sitting to day, the license of the French Horn, at Fulmar, was transferred from William Tripp, to George Yeowell, and the license of the Swan, at Wexham, was transferred from the representatives of Robert Cooper, deceased, to James Coling.
Marlow - Saturday August 20
A New Way To Expedite A Law Suit
Robert Hall, a sturdy butcher of Hambledon, who has been engaged in a tedious litigation with his father's second wife for a considerable time past, wearied at length with the "law's delay," called upon his solicitor at Great Marlow on Wednesday week, dragged him out of his office into the street, shook him well, then dragged him again into his office, and insisted that he should finish his suit without farther procrastination, thus refreshing him memory with a little more agitation, he left him to his serious cogitation's . On Saturday last our worthy constable Stallwood, dragged Robert from his shambles near Hambledon, before William Wyndham, Esq., a magistrate near Marlow, bound him over to keep the peace in future, and after making him pay costs for his correction , left him to wend his way home again as best he could.