13 August 1904
ALARM OF FIRE AT ASHTON
The Dangers of Throwing Lighted Matches About
The danger accompanying the careless throwing about of
lighted matches was again demonstrated on Sunday afternoon.
Whilst passing the grocer’s shop of Messrs ROGERSON
and DEWSNAP, 69 Margaret-street, Ashton, about 3.25 on
Sunday afternoon, Francis BLACKSHAW noticed smoke issuing
in thick volumes from underneath the doorway. He gave
the alarm, and communicated with the West-end police station,
where telephonic communication was established with the
The alarm bells were rung, and the float
and a contingent of firemen quickly dispatched. On the
arrival of the brigade it was found that a quantity of
paper had somehow become ignited under the doorway, and
burnt itself out. It is supposed that some children playing
about the shop had pushed the paper under the doorway,
and that someone passing had thoughtlessly thrown down
a lighted match, setting fire to the paper.
ALLEGED ASSAULT AT
At the Ashton County Police Court, on Wednesday, Walter
ACKROYD was charged with assaulting Martha WALKER on the
30th of July. He pleaded guilty.
Complainant said that on the date in question
she was talking to ACKROYD’s wife, who remarked
that the neighbours had been saying something about her.
She asked what it was, but Mrs ACKROYD wouldn’t
answer. At this point ACKROYD came out of the house shouting
that if they wanted any bother he could settle it with
his ——— fists and clogs. He then set
at her, and they commenced struggling on the floor.
In a short time he went in the house, and
soon after came out having changed his shoes for pit clogs,
and distinctly kicked her in the ribs, and when her sister
interfered he hit her in the mouth also. — Mary
BARNBROOK corroborated, and said she was talking to a
neighbour when she swathe two struggling on the floor.
She went to separate them, and ACKROYD went in but shortly
afterwards returned with some clogs, and kicked the complainant
Defendant’s version of the affair
was that he was asleep on the sofa when he heard the complainant
quarrelling with his wife. He went out and told them he
wanted no bother, and went in again. Looking out a little
later he saw the complainant strike his wife, who retaliated
by throwing the bucket of water on her. He went out in
his stockinged feet, but as the ground was scattered with
stones, he had to return to put his clogs on, and went
The magistrates dismissed the case.
At The Ashton Borough Police Court, on Monday, Charlotte
PRESCOTT summoned her husband, George PRESCOTT, for persistent
cruelty. Mr GARFORTH, who appeared on PRESCOTT’s
behalf, pleaded not guilty.
Charlotte PRESCOTT, the complainant, gave
evidence, and said they had been married 36 years, and
had three children, the youngest of whom was eleven. On
Tuesday night she returned from Manchester, where she
had been selling garden produce. Whenever she failed to
bring sufficient money her husband beat her, and on Tuesday,
the date in question, he came home beastly drunk, and
kicked her and turned her out of the house with her children,
since which they had been out and had nothing to eat.
He had often assaulted her — every
time he got drunk — and she was afraid to live with
him. He had threatened to make an end of her time and
again. — Cross-examined by Mr GARFORTH, complainant
admitted that her husband had brought her daughters bicycles
and musical instruments, and lived in a larger house on
purpose to indulge those hobbies.
Gertrude PRESCOTT, daughter of the complainant,
deposed to seeing her father turn her mother out of the
house on Tuesday night when he was drunk. — Cross-examined
by Mr GARFORTH, witness confessed that her father was
generally an excellent parent, and she had nothing to
Edith PRESCOTT, another younger daughter,
and Amy BINNS, a neighbour, corroborated the last witness,
whilst another neighbour characterised the language used
— which she heard through the wall — as “something
Mr GARFORTH submitted that the man was of
the greatest respectability, and was a well-known tradesman
of the town, and had always treated his family with the
greatest kindness. As he understood it, complainant had
been forbidden by the doctor to take any drink, because
some time ago she fell off the cart and severely injured
herself, as a result of which the doctor had said she
would get hysterical if she took drink.
He asked the magistrates as a matter of
law to decide that there was no persistent cruelty, and
going further would say that if they decided to grant
a separation order they would break up a hitherto happy
home and fairly prosperous business. The husband was quite
willing to take her back.
George PRESCOTT, the defendant, was sworn,
and gave evidence. Their home was very happy, he said,
until about two years ago when his wife commenced taking
drink. He would say on oath that he had never kicked or
struck her. On the Tuesday in question he and his daughters
had been working at the garden, came home, and found complainant
They had to wait for tea until seven o’clock.
When she came up she commenced swearing at him, and he
did threaten to strike her if she didn’t stop. She
then went out of her own accord. On Wednesday she returned
from her mother’s, and without any provocation commenced
using bad language again.
Ann SMETHURST, a widow and daughter of the
couple, said she had been a frequent visitor to her parents’
house, and from what she had observed up to a short time
ago they were very happy. It was the drink which had caused
The Chairman said the Bench were unanimous
in their opinion that a separation order ought to be granted:
12s. and custody of the children would be allowed.
QUARREL AT ASHTON
At the Ashton Borough Court, on Monday, Maria NEWTON summoned
Eliza MORRIS, and Eliza MORRIS summoned Sarah Ann BROADBENT
for assault on the 27th July. — Both pleaded not
Mrs NEWTON explained that on the date in
question she was hanging her clothes in the yard, when
Mrs MORRIS’s husband came up to her, and alleged
that she kept a disorderly house, and called her names.
She made no answer at the time, but later on she went
to his house and asked Mrs MORRIS why her husband had
said such a thing, and challenged her to prove it. Mrs
MORRIS immediately began calling her filthy names, and
attacked her, her husband standing by and urging her on.
Later, when the MORRISes received the summonses,
they went into the yard and cut down some clothes she
had been washing which were hanging on the line. They
fell to the floor and, and got spoiled, having to be washed
again. — Defendant denied having struck her, saying
she only pushed her, and alleged with great vehemence
that Mrs NEWTON’s name was not Maria, but Isabella.
The second charge now arose for consideration,
and from the evidence it appeared that Mrs BROADBENT was
stood at her door with a baby in her arms, when, seeing
Mrs MORRIS strike Mrs NEWTON, she remonstrated with her,
and received as a reward a smack in the face herself.
— Louisa BROADBENT corroborated.
Mrs MORRIS’s version of the fracas
was that her husband never mentioned any house when he
spoke to Mrs NEWTON, but, proceeding, made serious allegations
against Mrs NEWTON. The magistrates, however, stopped
her, and dismissed the case.
ALLEGED ASSAULT AT
Over the Garden Wall
At the Ashton County Police Court, on Wednesday, Jane
MURDEN summoned Timothy MOORHOUSE for assaulting her at
Woodhouses. Mr T.F. HEWITT, solicitor, who appeared on
his behalf, pleaded not guilty.
Complainant said that she lived at 53 Woodhouses.
MOORHOUSE was her next-door neighbour, and was always
calling her names. The assault was that he put up his
hands and invited her to “come on.” At the
time he was standing at the other side of the fence.
The Magistrates Clerk: Was he near enough
to strike you? Well, no; he was about three yards off.
— Mr HEWITT remarked that the alleged assault had
arisen out of a neighbour’s dispute. The complainant’s
children had pulled down the fence, but alleged that his
client had done so. The magistrates stopped the evidence,
and dismissed the case.
IMPORTANT CASE TO BREWER’S
DRAYMEN AT DUKINFIELD
At the Police Court, on Thursday, John HYDE and Albert
BULLOCK, brewer’s draymen, were charged with leaving
a wagon in Queen-street so as to cause an obstruction.
They pleaded guilty of leaving their horses in the execution
of their duty. They were delivering beer.
Detective KENNY stated that at seven p.m.
on the 3rd he was in King-street, when his attention was
drawn by Superintendent CROGHAN to an obstruction in Queen-street
by two horses attached to two brewer’s drays. One
horse had no nose-bag on, and the other was across the
street. At that time there was a lurry with a horse attached
to it coming along King-street, and the driver wanted
to go into King-street. He could not do so, and started
cursing, and a man removed the obstruction.
Witness went into the Seven Stars, and found
one of the defendants in the cellar, and the other coming
from the bar. — Defendant HYDE: When you came in,
wasn’t I coming from the bar with a book in my hand?
Yes. — Didn’t I tell you I had just been to
have the book signed by the landlord? Yes. — You
asked me in one man could not look after the horses and
the other deliver the stuff? Yes. And I told you distinctly
one could not put the barrels in the cellar.
There was no further evidence, and HYDE
then said he had been accustomed to deliver beer there
for the last seven years, and that was the first time
he had been spoken to by the police. It was a side street,
and he had always drawn the horses and lurries up there
because the cellar door was there. They delivered eight
36s, one 18, and twelve dozen bottles of beer, and he
could not see where they were losing any time.
The Deputy Clerk: It is not a question of
time, but of obstruction. — Alderman WOOD: You allowed
your horse to stray across the street. — HYDE said
that was an accident. The horses would do that once in
a time, but it was something unusual for this mare to
shift at all. They ought to have time allowed to deliver
the stuff, and he thought the summons was a little bit
Alderman WOOD told defendants that obstruction
had been proved, and they would each be fined 2s. 6d.
for costs. — HYDE: I should like to know if we are
to be allowed to deliver beer when we are working? —
Alderman WOOD: I cannot answer that question. It is for
your employers to settle that.
LETTER FROM JACK HAGGERTY
Fit and Well for the Channel Swim
Sir, — I would like my many friends in Stalybridge
to know that I am feeling wonderfully fit and well. I
have done a couple of good long swims in the Channel since
my arrival here, and I feel confident that with ordinary
good luck I shall get across to France. I never was better
in my life, and if only the water is not too cold there
is little doubt that my Stalybridge friends will be able
to congratulate me on Sunday week.
Yours truly, Jack HAGGERTY
Shakespeare Hotel, Dover, Aug 10th, 1904
FOUND DEAD AT STALYBRIDGE
On Saturday morning, at the Stalybridge Town Hall, an
inquest was held on the body of Albert POOLE, and aged
man, who had been found dead on the floor of his house
in Birch Yard, off Caroline-street, on Friday morning.
Mr Harry BAYLEY was foreman of the jury.
Julia Ann POOLE, widow of deceased, gave
evidence of identification. She resided at 16 Elizabeth-street,
off Turner-lane, Ashton, and deceased, who was her husband
was 65 years of age, and was by trade a shearer at the
Globe Forge. Latterly he had been hawking pies and peas.
They had lived separately for twelve years,
and during the past four years had lived alone at the
Birch Yard, Stalybridge. On Wednesday last he came to
her, and said he intended to go before the Board of Guardians
the next day to procure a Workhouse order. He did not
make any complaint, though he looked poorly. She gave
him 2s. on Tuesday when he visited her.
Edwin McCABE, of 82 Brierley-street, Stalybridge,
a labourer, deposed that on Friday he was working at the
Friend and Pitcher Inn, Caroline-street, and not seeing
POOLE about, as was his wont, his suspicions were aroused,
and about 11 a.m. witness, upon going to deceased’s
house, noticed the door key on the outside.
The door was unlocked, and upon opening
it witness found the old man laid behind the door dead.
There was a bruise on the left side of the forehead. Everything
was quite in order in the house. Later, the body was removed
to the mortuary at the Town Hall. Deceased had not made
any complaint to witness, but had been feeble for some
The Coroner: Have you any reason to suspect
foul play? Detective LEE: None whatever, sir. —
The Coroner: The bruise might have been caused by the
fall? Detective LEE: Yes, a doctor has seen him, and he
thinks so. — The Coroner: Was he a steady man? Detective
LEE: Well, he took drink at times; his calling almost
compelled him, as he went from public-house to public-house
The Coroner suggested to the jury that death
might have been caused by apoplexy. The jury concurred,
and a verdict of death from natural causes was returned.
Theatre Bar Open After Eleven P.M. — Heavy Penalty
At the Stalybridge Police Court, on Monday, before Alderman
RIDYARD (in the chair), Dr McCARTHY, and Councillor BOOTH,
the lessee of the Grand Theatre, Corporation-street, Mr
Arthur CARLTON, was summoned on three separate informations,
viz. (1) selling intoxicating liquor to William L. WYKES
and others during prohibited hours, to wit 11.50 p.m.
on the 20th ult.; (2) opening his licensed premises for
the sale of intoxicating liquor, and (3) keeping open
his licensed premises for the sale of intoxicating liquor
Mr Fred THOMPSON, solicitor (Messrs BUCKLEY,
MILLER, and THOMPSON) defended and pleaded guilty. Captain
BATES said that under the circumstances he would only
proceed on the first charge.
Sergeant GEE said that at 11.50 on Wednesday
night, the 20th ult., in consequence of seeing lights
and hearing voices in the Grand Theatre bar, he entered
along with Inspector BEAUMONT and Constable HAMER. In
the circle bar were a number of people — men and
women — and behind the bar were two barmaids.
On the counter and in front of the men and
women were glasses containing beer, stout, and spirits.
Mr ROOKE, the manager, was present, and witness asked
him who the people were. He replied, “Three of them
are my guests, and the remainder are members of the ‘Chinese
Asked what account he chose to give for
having the people on the premises during prohibited hours,
Mr ROOKE said, “I thought I could keep them in after
eleven o’clock, and they have not paid for any drink.”
Constable HAMER remarked, “Have you paid for the
drink?” and Mr ROOKE answered. “Oh no, I haven’t;
it will be booked against them, and they will pay at the
week-end.” Witness then took the names of the people
present, and told Mr ROOKE he would be reported.
Mr THOMPSON addressed the Bench in mitigation
of the penalty. He said this was a matter entirely outside
Mr CARLTON’s personal knowledge, although he was
responsible for the act of his manager. On this particular
night the theatrical company had been playing rather late,
and after the performance they adjourned to the bar for
This kind of thing was contrary to Mr CARLTON’s
instructions, and the manager was at fault in allowing
people to stay there after hours. Mr CARLTON was very
sorry it had occurred, and he had sent Mr MITCHELL down
to represent him. He (Mr THOMPSON) might also say on behalf
of the owners of the theatre that it was contrary to their
The evidence of the police was admitted,
and Mr THOMPSON asked the Bench, under the circumstances,
to deal leniently. Mr ROOKE was under a very strong agreement,
and the penalty would, he believed, be enforced upon him.
The owners were very sorry this had occurred, as since
Mr CARLTON took over the theatre he had improved the tone
of the place, and there had not been any trouble as in
days gone by.
The magistrates consulted for a few moments,
and the Chairman the said: We can only look upon this
as a very serious offence. We have decided to impose a
penalty of £5 and costs.
EARTHQUAKE IN NEW ZEALAND
A Slight Shock in Ashton
On Monday night (English time) within an hour of each
other, earthquakes shocks were experienced in regions
as far apart as New Zealand and Lisbon. The earthquake
was severe in New Zealand, but in Lisbon the shock, which
was felt about fifty minutes later than the New Zealand
disturbance, was only slight, and did no damage.
A Reuter’s message from Wellington
describes the earthquake as the heaviest for many years.
Several public buildings were seriously damaged, and many
private firms and householders sustained heavy losses.
No loss of life, however, is reported. The time was 10
on Tuesday morning (New Zealand time), and the shock was
felt in both islands.