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The Argus, Friday 30th September 1910, transcribed by Kay Collins
Polling District L - Rushden Court 1910

At two o’clock on Tuesday afternoon, at the new Council Buildings, Rushden, Mr. Disney commenced a sitting for the Rushden Polling District (District L), comprising Higham Park, Newton Bromswold and Rushden. Mr. F. Toseland (with whom was Mr. J. George, of Rushden) again appeared for the Liberals, and Mr. J. F. Coales (with whom was Mr. B. R. Woolhouse) represented the Conservatives.

“A Family Case”

In the Liberal lodger claim of Thomas Denton Mr. Coales said he was informed that the claimant had not the sole use of the bedroom. Mr. Toseland said the claimant was living with his father in a very large house, and was encouraged in his father’s business. Mr. Woolhouse stated that Mrs. Denton informed him that a younger brother slept with the claimant, who only paid 10s. a week. The Revising Barrister, in adjourning the case, said in family cases inquiries needed to be made as to whether there was sole use of the room. Mr George remarked that another son was on the list. Ultimately the claim was disallowed.


Harry Johnson, a Liberal lodger claim, was objected to by Mr. Coales on the ground that he did not pay the amount he stated. The landlady told him that he paid 11s. a week. Mr. George: He tells me he pays more than 12s. every week. The Assistant Overseer said the house was one for a room in which a stranger would probably pay the required amount. Claim allowed.

A Big Eighteen

Bertram Russell, a Conservative lodger claim was objected to by Mr. Toseland on the ground that he was not twenty-one years of age. Mr. George: My information is that he is eighteen. The Revising Barrister remarked that eighteen was a big discrepancy. Mr. George: No doubt he is under age; I know him personally. The case was adjourned for inquiries, and at the end of the sitting the claimant (a big, well-developed young man) attended and stated that he was twenty-one last February. The Revising Barrister: I think I should have known you more than eighteen. Claim allowed.

Another “Family Case”

Respecting Robert Skeffington, jun, a Liberal lodger claim. Mr. Coales said he was told the claimant did not pay the sum he stated on the form. The revising Barrister: This is a family case. It was mentioned that the rent of the house was 5s. weekly, and that there were three bedrooms. Ultimately the claim was disallowed.

Those Bedrooms Again!

The Conservative lodger claim of Herbert Tompkins was objected to by Mr. Toseland, who said there were only three bedrooms and a large family, viz. Five sons, including claimant, and one daughter, also father and mother. The Revising Barrister: I must have more information. Finally Mr. Coales said he could not go further with the claim, which was then disallowed.

Old Age Pensioner’s Vote

In the case of Joseph Bollard, a Liberal lodger claim, Mr. Coales said claimant stated that he paid 4s.6d. a week for a room, while the sum he paid altogether was 8s. a week. Mr. Toseland said the claimant was an old age pensioner. He had his permanent lodging in the house, but he frequently moved about among his relatives and friends in the town, from whom he got part of his board. The Assistant Overseer thought the statement in claimant’s behalf was likely enough to be true. The family all helped him, and he had a good room. The house was more than a cottage. After further consideration the Revising Barrister allowed the claim.

Question of Sole Use

William Brown, another Liberal lodger claim, was objected to by Mr. Coales on the ground that the claimant did not have a room to himself. There were three bedrooms, and the inmates consisted of father and mother, two daughters (14 and 17), the claimant and another son aged ten. Mr. George said he worked at the same factory as the claimant, and was not aware of a brother. The case was adjourned, the claim ultimately being disallowed.

Witnessing Declarations

Arthur S. Darnell was a Conservative lodger claim: and Mr. Toseland, in objecting, said his information was that the claimant only paid 10s. a week for board and lodgings. Mr. George said this information was given him by the eldest sister. The form was not signed at home; they knew nothing about it. The Revising Barrister, referring to the claim, said he did not care for a canvasser to be a witness. It ought to be someone who had information. The proper witness was the person to whom the rent was paid. There was nothing in the world, if a claim was a good, honest claim, to prevent the landlord or landlady, to whom the rent was paid, signing the declaration, because it was something more than mere witnessing, as the witness had to believe the claim to be correct. The case was held over for more information and ultimately Mr Coales said he could not go any further with the claim, which was disallowed.


A lodger claimant named Harris was objected to by Mr. Toseland on the ground that there were only three bedrooms in the house and a mixed family of ten. Mr. Coales: I don’t supports this claim. Disallowed.

A Butler not a Lodger

Joseph W. H. Iliffe, a Conservative lodger claim, was objected to by Mr. Toseland, who stated that the claimant was a butler at the Hall. The Revising Barrister: How can he be a lodger? Mr. Toseland: That is my point. The Revising Barrister: Can you support him Mr. Coales? Mr. Coales: No. The Revising Barrister: He must come off.

“The Wrong House”

Mr. Coales objected to a Liberal lodger claim for a claimant named Jacques on the ground of value. It was his opinion that no man would give the required sum for a rum in that house, which was very small, and in a very narrow sort of jetty. Mr. Toseland: The rent is 5s.8d. a week. Mr. Geogre said Mr. Coales was wrong. The house stood at a corner. The Assistant Overseer: It belongs to me. Don’t run it down too much. It is better than some. Mr. Coales (to the assistant overseer): I did not know it was yours. I withdraw my objection. Claim allowed.

Objection Withdrawn

In the case of Edward Newall, a Liberal lodger claim, there was a question aas to the class of house, but Mr. Coales withdrew his objection.

Sole Occupancy Disputed

In a similar claim for George Edward Newall, Mr.Coales contended that someone had shared the claimant’s room since January. Mr. Toseland: He has stopped at the house two or three days since January this year. He does not have the use of that room. He happened to be visiting when the overseer called. Mr. George: He pays 12s.6d. a week, and it is his own furniture. The Revising Barrister: That would not disqualify him, allowing a friend to stay there. Mr. Woolhouse said this information was that the other man (Mr. Dillon) had been at the house since last January and that Mr. Newall, who was about to get married, allowed Mr. Dllon to share his room with him. The landlady told him that Mr. Newall had formerly paid 12s., but now only 11s, in consequence of Mr. Dillon lodging there. Claim disallowed.


In the Conservative lodger claim for Robert Twelvetree, Mr. Toseland, objecting, said there were eight in family, and the rent was 4s.6d. a week. Claim disallowed.

The business was concluded shortly after half-past three.

The Argus, Friday 30th September 1910, transcribed by Kay Collins

“Charlie” takes a keen interest in political and municipal life in Rushden, and is a power in the Tariff Reform world. Such is his zeal that for some years a notice board has been affixed to his house on which he conveys to all and sundry the state of the political market. On Thursday a practical joker who has but little sympathy with his views forwarded to him a postcard bearing the startling announcement that the authorities would be attending on the following morning to rate the hoarding on the general principle. On Friday morning the self-constituted overseer passed the residence, and smiled violently on seeing that the board had been removed and that only a clean square space remained on the wall to tell the story of the past.

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