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Rushden Echo & Argus, 1922, transcribed by Gill Hollis
Hodgkins and Fensome
boot manufacturers

13th October, 1922

Failure in The Shoe Trade - Rushden and Higham Ferrers Firm

  The public examination of Sydney Hodgkins, of 72, Higham-road, Rushden, trading as Hodgkins and Fensome, boot manufacturers, High-street, Higham Ferrers, took place at the Northampton Bankruptcy Court on Tuesday.  The gross liabilities were £1,226  0s.  11d., with £903  3s.  2d. estimated to rank against the estate.  The assets were expected to yield £115  1s.  11d., and the deficiency was £788  1s.  3d.

  Examined by Mr. Roe, debtor said he was a laster before he began manufacturing.  He was in the Army a year, and on leaving the Service in 1919 received a gratuity of 9s.  6d.  In April or May that year he and a brother-in-law commenced business with a capital of £60 equally provided, and there was to be an equal sharing of liabilities and profits.  Debtor was general manager, and his brother-in-law, who worked as an operative in another factory during the day, did clicking at night.  That lasted a year, and then Fensome left off working as he could not stand the strain of two employments, but he did not take anything out of the business.  For a time after that a man named Hodgkins, not a relative, was interested in the concern, putting in £80, but he, too, went out, but left his money in.  Debtor thought the business was solvent at that time and went on trading, borrowing money from various friends to pay debts and buy stock.  Altogether he borrowed several hundred pounds, some of which he had repaid.  Except during the last six months, he traded at a profit, but he had a lot of stock, bought at a high price, which depreciated.  He knew last January that he could not pay his debts in full.

  The examination was formally adjourned.


10th November, 1922

A Question of Promissory Notes - “A Shilling On”

  At the Northampton Bankruptcy Court on Tuesday Sydney Hodgkins, 72, Higham-road, Rushden, trading as Hodgkins and Fensome, boot manufacturers, Higham Ferrers, appeared for his adjourned examination.

  In reply to the Official Receiver, debtor said the only loan that was not included in his books was his wife’s loan of £100.

  Debtor was examined on the working of several promissory notes which emanated from two different ladies, and, though worded precisely the same and signed “S. Hodgkins,” debtor denied that he either wrote them or directed them to the ladies in question.  He denied that he had dictated the notes, and said he told them if it suited them it was good enough for him.

  Asked if he ever did any betting, debtor smiled and said he might have had a shilling on.

  The Official Receiver:  It is no smiling matter when you have dropped £700 in twelve months and borrowed money from these two ladies.

  In reply to Mr. E. Austin, for Messrs. Odell & Co., debtor denied that he told him he was solvent in July last.

  The examination was adjourned until Dec. 5th, and debtor was ordered to file within 14 days a cash account showing loans and moneys received and how expended.

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