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Court Reports 1874 - 1879

24 January 1874 - Northampton Mercury

Rushden—Game TrespassThomas Litchfield, Charles Bolton, John Partridge, and Wm. Day, were summoned for a game trespass, on the …

28 February 1874 - Northampton Mercury 

RUSHDEN-Sheep Stealing—On Monday night or Tuesday morning last some person or persons killed a ewe sheep in field belonging to Mr. Mason, between Rushden and Ferrers, and dressed and took away one leg leaving the rest of the carcass in the pen..…...

07 March 1874 - Northampton Mercury 

James Gilbert, 52, shoemaker, for stealing leather at Rushden. Thomas Jacques, for stealing leather, rivets, and boots, at Rushden.

14 March 1874 - Northampton Mercury 

Northampton Crown Court
Thomas Jacques, 15, pleaded guilty to a charge of stealing a quantity of leather, value 15s., the property of George Denton, at Rushden, during the month of February last.—The prisoner said he would not have done it had he not been tutored by his accomplice Gilbert, who had been convicted in the other court. Sentenced to Three Months’ Hard Labour.

23 May 1874 - Northampton Mercury

At Dover county court on Wednesday the case of Lukey v. Tailby was heard. Plaintiffs, wine and spirit merchants, Dover, sued the defendant, who resides Rushden, in this county for £6 3s. on account  ….

02 May 1874 - Northampton Mercury 

W’boro Court—John Dickens, Joseph Hind, and Jeremiah Rice were summoned for game trespass on land belonging to F. U. Sartoris, Esq., of Rushden Hall.— Richard Rhode, farm bailiff to the prosecutor, appeared.— Rice only appeared in answer to the summons.—The case was …

27 June 1874 - Northampton Mercury

Rushden-Game TrespassJohn Dickens was brought up on a charge of game trespass, on the 16th of April last. …. 

18 July 1874 - Northampton Mercury

Petty Sessions
Rushden. Charge Removing Stamps. George Tailby was charged with having his possession document, to wit, a warrant of appointment …...

18 July 1874 – Northampton Mercury

Joseph Knight, 14 days' hard labour, for being drunk, at Rushden.—George Tailby, nine calendar months, for forgery, Rushden.

01 August 1874 - Northampton Mercury 

Rushden-Stealing a DinnerJoseph Rice was charged with obtaining goods under false pretences. It appeared that on the 16h of July ….

26 September 1874 - Northampton Mercury 

Rushden—A Batch of TrespassersJosiah Bailey, W. Berwick, John Dickens, German Warren, Jeremiah Rice, and William Dickens, ….

Northampton Mercury Saturday September 26th 1874, transcribed by Susan Manton

Sheep stealingOn Monday night some person or persons unknown killed a sheep belonging to Mr. Skinner, and dressed it, taking the legs and shoulders and part of the loin, leaving the skin and other parts in the field.

10 October 1874 - Northampton Mercury 

Leaving Employment without giving Notice. George Vickers, clicker, was summoned for leaving the employ Mr. Cave, shoe manufacturer ….

17 October 1874 - Northampton Mercury

Edwin Chettle, of Rushden, for having one unstamped pint tin measure -The defendant said his man had taken it out without his knowledge to measure some ….

12 December 1874 - Northampton Mercury

John Neville, of Rushden, shoemaker, was charged with stealing a hammer, value 1s. 6d., from the person of Collins Pearson, of Irthlingborough, whilst ….

06 February 1875 - Northampton Mercury

Rushden-Game TrespassCharles Dickens and Thomas Denton were charged with a game trespass, on the 10th ult. …. 

29 May 1875 - Northampton Mercury

RushdenJohn Cox and Matthew Hanger were summoned by William Wilmot for assaulting him, on the 16th instant. The complainant, ….

19 June 1875 - Northampton Mercury

Rushden-PoachingGerman Warren, of Rushden, was charged with poaching, at Melchbourne, on the 4th inst.—P.C. Taylor said he received information from the keepers ….

24 July 1875 - Northampton Mercury 

George Dickens, gamekeeper, v. James Kitchener, of Rushden, shoemaker, trespassing on land, in search of game, at Melchbourne, on the 16th May last. Fined £2, and £1 11s. 3d. costs.

17 July 1875 - Northampton Mercury

W’boro Petty Sessions

Frederick Knight was summoned for an offence against the Excise by carrying gun without a licence.

18 September 1875 - Northampton Mercury

At Higham Ferrers Magisterial Court

Frederick Denton, of Rushden, was charged with having feloniously stolen a skirt from the premises of Eliza Lucas. —Prisoner was also further charged with …

27 November 1875 - Northampton Mercury

P.C. Haynes v. German Warren, of Rushden, labourer, drunk and riotous, on the highway, at Wymington, on the 8th. Although only 23 years of age, nine previous convictions …..

Northampton Mercury Saturday January 27th 1877, transcribed by Susan Manton


On Sunday evening last the house of Mr. James Rice, of this village, was broken into and a large quantity of valuable property was broken into, and a large quantity of valuable property taken, comprising nine silver watches, a quantity of boots and some money. Mr. Rice and his wife had gone over to Higham Ferrers to spend the afternoon and left the house unattended. A neighbour noticed a light in the house at half past six in the evening and thought how late they would be in going to chapel. The light was taken from the rooms down stairs to the upper ones and it is thought that it was at this time the robbery was committed. The thief or thieves effected an entrance by breaking a pane of glass in the back window, and then opened the window. Before breaking the glass they stuck a sheet of paper, covered in rye paste, so that the glass should adhere to the paper and thus not make a noise by falling. There was a considerable amount of cash and other property in the house overlooked by the burglars. The police are making every effort to discover the guilty parties.

31 March 1877 - Northampton Mercury

Bad Meat—At the Guildhall, on Friday, George Henry Skinner, butcher, of Rushden, was summoned for sending four pieces of a sheep to market which were unfit for food. The charge was proved, and the alderman ….

Wellingborough News, 5th January 1878, transcribed by Kay Collins

Petty Sessions — Dec. 28.

Before F. U. Sartoris, Esq. (in the chair), and R. Arkwright, Esq.

PIGEON STEALINGRichard Ealey and William Sears, shoemakers, were charged with stealing pigeons on the night of the 13th ult., the property of Benjamin Browning, of Chelveston Lodge. — Mr. Simpson, of Higham Ferrers, appeared for the prosecution — Sergt. J. Martin, stationed at Higham Ferrers, said he went to the Lodge of the prosecutor on the morning of the 14th ult., and saw that a robbery had been committed, and he went the same morning to the houses of both the prisoners and found puddings on the fire, each containing pigeons. The prisoners were apprehended on the 17th at Irthlingborough. — They pleaded guilty. Sears was sentenced to five months, and Ealey to four months' imprisonment.

A SIMILAR CASEThomas Harris and Thomas Barker, shoemakers, were charged with stealing several pigeons and fowls, the property of Mr. H. W. Currie. — The evidence in this case, as given by P.O. Taylor and Sergt. J. Martin, was to the effect that on the night of the 19th ult., they were on duty near farm premises occupied by the prosecutor, and about 12 o'clock they saw the prisoners come up opposite, and a bundle was put through the hedge, which, on being picked up by Sergt. Martin, was found to contain six fowls, which had just been killed. The prisoners, on ascertaining that they were watched, left the bundle and ran away. Barker was apprehended the same night; and Harris the following Sunday morning at Souldrop. The skins of several pigeons were also produced belonging to the same prosecutor. — Both prisoners pleaded guilty. — The Chairman said that of late fowl stealing had become very common in that neighbourhood, and the public had suffered severely from such depredations. The prisoners would be sent to gaol for four months each with hard labour. The Chairman also spoke in terms of praise of the way in which the police had acted in bringing the offenders to justice.

26 January 1878 - Northampton Mercury

Joseph Lambert, shoemaker, Rushden, for neglecting have his child vaccinated accordance with the Vaccination Act.—Mr. Packwood, the vaccination-officer, proved …..

Wellingborough News, February 23rd 1878, transcribed by Kay Collins



Before H. M. Stockdale. Esq., (chairman), Captain Pearson, and Spencer Pratt, Esq.


James Ward was charged with stealing a number of shoemakers' tools at Rushden, on the 16th inst., the property of Joseph Barley.

The prosecutor said he was a finisher, living at Rushden, and lent the prisoner two irons used for finishing. Prisoner brought them back to the shop, and after he had left the tools were missed.

P.C. Taylor said he traced the prisoner to Northampton, and found him there. Witness charged him with stealing the tools, but he denied having done so. He said his name was not Ward, but Simpson. His wife said "Don't tell any lies," and the accused then admitted that his name was Ward. On the following day witness saw prisoner's wife and obtained the pawn ticket relating to the tools produced, which had been pawned with Mr. Abrahams, Northampton. Showed them to the prosecutor, who identified them as his property.

P. S. Phoenix said the prisoner admitted his guilt to him, and told him where he could find the pawn-ticket.

The accused now pleaded guilty, adding that he was very sorry for what he had done.

Sentenced to 21 days' imprisonment with hard labour.

Wellingborough News, 9th November 1878, transcribed by Kay Collins


Before H. Cooke, Esq., Q.C., Judge.


Charles Sanders, currier, Rushden, sued Jno. Frederick Hawkes, coal merchant, of Higham Ferrers, for £12 13s. 4d., half year's rent of house and land at Higham Ferrers.

Mr. Hey gate appeared for the plaintiff, and Mr. Bond, from the office of Mr. T. B. Girling, for the defendant.

The plaintiff said he hired the property of the executors of the Hon. George Fitzwiliiam, and agreed to let it for the last six months that he had to remain in possession to the defendant, who consented take the fixtures. There was a stipulation on the agreement that witness should occupy a portion of the premises and pay the defendant rent for it—3s. 4d. a week.

His Honour asked for the agreement, and was told that it could not be found.

The defendant said it was three months since he had seen it, and he did not know what had become of the document.

His Honour suggested that the plaintiff should make some abatement, and ultimately the plaintiff consented to take a verdict for £8 and his expenses.

His Honour said that was a very proper and gentlemanly way of settling the dispute.

Wellingborough News, 15th February 1879, transcribed by Kay Collins

Wellingborough County Court - Tuesday last - Judgment Summonses

John Barker, chimney sweep Rushden, v. John Smith, chimney sweep, Newcomen-road, Wellingborough. His Honour made an order for defendant to pay 8s. a month, or go to prison for seven days.

Wellingborough News, 22nd March 1879, transcribed by Kay Collins

Wellingborough Petty Sessions - FRIDAY, MARCH 21st.
Before H. M. Stockdale, Esq., Spencer Pratt, Esq., and G. J. H. Pearson, Esq.

A Suspicious Case

Matthew Hanger was charged with being on premises at Rushden for an unlawful purpose, on the 16th inst.; he was also charged with assaulting the police at the same time and place.

P.C. Tack stated that about half-past eleven p.m. he saw the prisoner go into Mr. Rhodes' farmyard and thence to Mr. Carrie's paddock and a private garden. When he saw the constable prisoner ran away, but was captured, upon which he assaulted witness, very violently kicking him on the leg, and breaking the strap of his hat.

The accused, who had been six times previously convicted, was sentenced to one month's imprisonment with hard labour.

Wellingborough News, 14th June 1879, transcribed by Kay Collins

Threatening To Shoot A Wife

Thomas Barker, of Rushden, was summoned for assaulting and threatening to shoot his wife, Eliza Jane Barker, at Rushden, on the 1st June.

Mr. Halliley, who appeared for the plaintiff, said the case had been settled between the parties, and he asked the magistrates to allow the case to be withdrawn.

Mr. Heygate, for the defendant, expressed & similar wish, and the application was granted.

Wellingborough News, 21st June 1879, transcribed by Kay Collins

Wellingborough County Court—Monday Last - Before W. H. Cooke, Esq., Q.C., Judge. The undefended cases were disposed of by the Registrar, G. H. Burnham, Esq.


The plaintiff, a shoe manufacturer of Rushden, sued the defendant, a commercial traveller of Northampton, at the April court, for money received by him on behalf of plaintiff, and for 20 samples, detained by defendant, the property of plaintiff.

Defendant admitted the debt, but brought a counter claim of £26 1s., being commission at five per cent on a number of orders taken by him for plaintiff.

The principal feature in the case was as to the custom of trade, and Mr. N. P. Sharman, of Wellingborough, was appointed as arbitrator. He now gave his decision as follows: I have heard the statements of the defendant and plaintiff in this case, and have carefully considered the conflicting evidence given by them. The usages of the trade are not sufficiently regular and uniform to form a basis upon which the case can be decided, though they are some guide in the matter. Looking at all the circumstances, and the evidence that was laid before me, it is my opinion that the defendant has no claim upon plaintiff for commission on orders that were received but not executed, nor upon goods which were returned by plaintiff's customers.

Mr. Heygate, on behalf of the plaintiff, asked for costs, but His Honour said as the case had been referred to arbitration, the case was out of his hands. The arbitrator ought to have decided the question of costs. Ultimately the Registrar was asked by His Honour to see the arbitrator, and obtain his opinion as to who was to pay the costs.

Wellingborough News, 21st June 1879, transcribed by Kay Collins

Wellingborough County Court—Monday Last Before W. H. Cooke, Esq., Q.C., Judge. The undefended cases were disposed of by the Registrar, G. H. Burnham, Esq.

The Value of Cottages At Higham Ferrers

The Corporation of Higham Ferrers v. George Denton.

Mr. Heygate for plaintiffs.

This was an action for ejectment, the defendant stating that he had no objection to leave, but it was impossible to get another house.

His Honour said it was a very hard case, but he could do no other than make an order; he would, however, give them six weeks.

Other summonses against three of defendant's neighbours were decided in like manner.

A Similar Case At Rushden

W. H. Currie, Rushden v. J. Garrot, wheelwright, Rushden.

Mr. Heygate for plaintiff.

This was also an action for ejectment, and the excuse was similar as in the last case.

His Honour gave the defendant two months in which to leave the house.

Wellingborough News, 19th July 1879, transcribed by Kay Collins

Wellingborough Petty SessionsFRIDAY, JULY 18th Before R. Arkwright, Esq. (in the chair), and Spencer Pratt, Esq.

Charles Perkins was summoned for being drunk at Rushden, on the 13th inst. He was fined 12s., including costs.

ALLOWING ANIMALS TO STRAYEdward Chettle was summoned for allowing five horses to stray on the highway at Rushden, on the 22nd ult.

P.C. Tack proved the case.

The Chairman said five horses turned out on to the road were a very great public nuisance. The defendant would have to pay 5s. and 9s. 6d. costs.

Wellingborough News, 27th September 1879, transcribed by Kay Collins

Petty Sessions—FRIDAY, SEPT. 20th. Before H. M. Stockdale, Esq. (in the chair), and Spencer Pratt, Esq.

Cruelty To A HorseWm. Line was summoned for working a mare while in an unfit state, at Earl's Barton, on the 3rd inst.

Mr. Parker defended, and said that the defendant had unknowingly committed the offence, and that he threw himself on the mercy of the Bench.

An inspector of the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals proved the case, and a nominal fine of 1s. was imposed, with 9s. 6d. costs.

Valentine Woodey, Rushden, was charged with a similar offence on the 24th ult.

Mr. Wiggins, veterinary surgeon, gave evidence as to the state of the animal, which he said was very bad. He said that the fore legs were very much diseased, and that the horse was totally unfit for work.

The magistrates fined the defendant 10s., and £1 18s. 10d. costs.

Wellingborough News, 4th October 1879, transcribed by Kay Collins

Wellingborough Petty SessionsFRIDAY, OCT. 3RD.
Before H. M. Stockdale, Esq. (in the chair), and Spencer Pratt, Esq.

DRUNKENESSEdwin Chettle, Rushden, was summoned for being drunk and riotous at Rushden, on the 20th ult.

P.C. Tack proved the case, and the defendant was fined 10s., and costs9s. 6d.

PARENTAL NEGLECTJames York was summoned for refusing to contribute towards the support of his child at a Reformatory School.

An order for the payment of 9d. per week was made.

Wellingborough News, 4th October 1879, transcribed by Kay Collins

Sharnbrook Petty SessionsSEPT. 26th, Magistrates present: Lord St. John, and the Rev. C. C. Beaty Pownall.

Trespassing in Search of GameJeremiah Rice, of Rushden, shoemaker was charged with game trespass at Melchbourne, on the 22nd ult.

The case was proved by Samuel Woodhams gamekeeper.

The defendant was fined £2, and 11s. costs.

Wellingborough News, 11th October 1879, transcribed by Kay Collins

Wellingborough Petty SessionsFRIDAY, OCTOBER 10th.
Magistrates present:— R. Arkwright, Esq., and G. J. H. Pearson, Esq.

DRUNKENNESS—The following persons were summoned and fined for being drunk:—
Jeremiah Rice and Charles Goodliffe, Rushden, 10s., and 8s. costs;
Jno. Nunneley, Rushden, 2s. 6d., and 9s. 6d. costs;
George Sparks, Irchester, 2s. 6d., and 9s. 6d. costs;
George Garret, Wellingborough, 2s. 6d., and 9s. 6d. costs;
Elizabeth Roberts, Wellingborough, 10s and 10s. 6d. costs.
Jno. Laughton was summoned for being disorderly and refusing to quit the Bee's Wing Inn, Wellingborough. He was fined 10s and 9s. 6d. costs.

Wellingborough News, 8th November 1879, transcribed by Kay Collins

Wellingborough Petty SessionsFRIDAY, NOVEMBER 7TH.
Before H. M. Stockdale, Esq. (in the chair), and Spencer Pratt, Esq.

DRUNKENNESSEdwin Chettle, Rushden, and John Fretter, Wellingborough, were summoned for being drunk at Wellingborough, on the 30th ult., and fined 10s. and costs 9s. each.

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