Mexborough & Swinton Times – Saturday 01 October 1910
Denaby Horsekeeper In Trouble.
The Poetical Sense.
Debating Society of Two
The attention of the Doncaster Bench on Saturday was focussed for a considerable time upon a case of alleged persistent cruelty against Fred Guest, a well-known Denaby man, who is horsekeeper in the Denaby colliery.
His wife. Phoebe, was responsible for the charge and the abundance of evidence produced some rather startling statements. The parties are elderly and complainant asked for a separation order.
She was represented by Mr. W. Baddiley; whilst defendant had the assistance of Mr. F. Allen. Defendant caused a great deal of amusement in his interference and frequent interruption of his solicitor.
Mr. Baddiley said the parties were married seven years ago at the Registry office at Doncaster, There were no children the union, but his client had some children, the outcome of a previous marriage.
For the greater part of the seven years defendant had behaved wrongly to his wife. The parties resided in Doncaster road, Denaby, at first, and during the time they were there — five or six years ago— complainant had to leave her husband for nine weeks. They came together again, but the trouble began again, and complainant had to stay out all night. They afterwards removed to Cliff View, Denaby Main.
Defendant did not go about his ill-treatment in the usual way.
He got hold of his wife in “grips” from which she could not escape and then he shook her, rendering bee unconscious. This had been going for some time, and complainant was now afraid to live with her husband, who was in a good position and who earned 31/6 weekly.
Phoebe Guest, the complainant, is residing at 82, Cliff View with her married daughter, said the marriage took place on August 91st, 1903. On account of his treatment to her she left him on the 10th of the present month, and west to live with her daughter (Mrs. Allison), at 86, Cliff View. In November, 1905, he got hold of her neck, held her down, and put his foot on her. On that occasion she left him for nine weeks. He tried to strangle her. She and her daughter had to stay at Mr. Bass’s all night. He smashed all the pots and turned them out. On one occasion they had to run out in there night attire to the house of a neighbour, Mrs. Wathey, where they stayed all night. He had threatened to cut her throat. On the occasion when she left him before, her husband asked her to come back. She went back, and he started again. She had had to fetch the police to make him open the door. On September 8th last he cams upstairs to her and got her arms round the back of her neck and shook her until she became unconscious. On the Friday, as he was getting his meal, he started abusing her, and threatened to speak a fork her. He said he would stick it in her —- rotten, heart. She was forced to leave him in consequence. When he threatened her with the fork she through the poker at him in self-defence, and she could not say whether it struck him or not.
A Lot Better Off Before.
By Mr. Allan: He has never been a good ‘un to me. He is always on nights. When he married her she was a widow with three children. It was just after the strike. No, he had not kept her and the children. She was a lot more comfortable and better off before she married him. It was his drinking bouts that caused the trouble. He had been 14 years at the pit. She was not hysterical and could not get herself into fits when she wanted. She took no summons out in 1905, but she consulted Mr. Baddiley, who sent her husband a letter. On that occasion defendant cried to some back to her. She had marks her arms where he had gripped them No: he had not kept her in clothes. The clothes she was wearing were seven years old and she had them before she married him. He had never bought her anything. He had told her he could put her life out in the twinkling of an eye. The clothes were in good condition bemuse she had had to take care of them, and she hardly ever went out,
Charles Bass, Doncaster road, Denaby Main, said he was a next door neighbour to the parties when they this live at that address. He had had to give them shelter, and had heard pots rattling and cursing and swearing. The wife and two daughters had had to take refuge with him. They were crying at the time he gave then shelter.
A Careful Witness.
By Mr. Allen: That was four or five years ago. He worked at the colliery and knew defendant He had never seen defendant ill treat his wife. He had known her 14 years. He had seen defendant worse for drink. He (witness) got drunk indoors—not out. (Laughter)
Mr Baddeley: The complainant was a highly respectable woman. He did not know she was hysterical, and he did not know the meaning of the word.
Mrs Annie Swathey, Doncaster Road, said she lived four doors away from the Guests when they were at that address. She had known Mrs. Guest 12 years. Defendant behaved very badly to his wife and kicked up a lot of bother.
By Mr. Allen: She knew of nothing since. She had been summoned to come there.
Mrs. Smith. Cliff view, said she had lived there five months. On the Friday in question she saw Mrs Guest run out of her home. She was crying. She heard defendant he would give it her (complainant) if she went in there.
Miss Turner, 87, Cliff View, corroborated the last witness.
Mrs. Allison, daughter of the complainant, said her mother was living with her. She remembered the time when they had to go to Mr. Bass’s. Guest had fastened them oat. They had also to go to Mrs. Watheys, and that they was is their night attire. She spoke to finding her mother unconscious.
By Mr. Allen: Witness knew her mother had thrown at poker at in self-defence. She did not know it was farewell blessing. Defendant made an attempt to stick the fork into her mother. He was in drink at the time. Defendant was a bad husband. There were no marks on the complainant. She supposed he would have a bit of a “scratch” on his head as a result of the poker striking him.
Elsie Johnson said complainant was her mother. Defendant had tried to strangle her mother a time or two and she and her sister and had to go away from the house. Last Friday defendant told her to take her —– hook where she had come from.
Who Own the Pots?
He had not been a good father to them. He had broken a lot of pots.
Mr Allen: I suppose he can do as he likes with his own pots?
Witness: They were not his pots. They belonged to my mother
For the defence, Mr Allen contended that sufficient evidence to warrant the making out of this abroad order and not been produced. Part of the trouble be called by the daughter, was living with another man.
Complainant: Well, the man is living with another woman, so it’s as broad as long. (Laughter).
Continuing, Mr Allen said there was no evidence of cruelty, and complainant had no marks to show this.
Defendant Waxes Poetical
the defendant stated that he had never assaulted his wife and had no desire to do so. She had left the house through her son. Defendant here showed the cut on his head, which he said had been done by the poker. The wound had bled freely. After he had received the wound he went upstairs and shouted through the window:
Farewell, dear wife, and friends so dear
I am not dead but lingering here (laughter)
Continuing defendant said he had no desire to part with his wife. He was not in the habit of getting drunk. He had been teetotal for three years. After he had recited the poetry he went to bed.
By Mr. Baddiley: He had four or five glasses on the night in portion. He admitted breaking the pots becalms his wife would net fetch his money. He had bad a drop of “owd” beer. He had not turned his wife and daughters out in their night dresses. The witnesses were all spiteful against him, as he had had “words” with them. He would not have Mrs Wathey in the house. They had all imagined their evidence. He did not ask her to come back. The trouble was him finding a man in the when they were first married, at 11 o’clock at night. The man’s name was Wilfred Newman. This occurrence was their one “topic.” His wife had been twice away from him. When the daughter Elsie came home from the institute on the Wednesday, he did not turn her out. He had not threatened to stab anybody.
Mr. Allen: She (complainant) had the key. She could go back home when she liked.
Joseph Hague, Oliver street, Mexborough’, collier, said he had known defendant for 20 years. He was an upright man.
This concluded the case for the defence, and the magistrates retired to consider their verdict. Upon their return, a few minutes later, the chairman announced that they thought the evidence was strong enough to warrant was then granted a separation order with the costs. Defendant would also have to pay 10/- a week towards his wife’s maintenance.