Domestic Trouble at Denaby – Case Adjourned

January 1901

Mexborough and Swinton Times January 25.

Domestic Trouble at Denaby

Edward Kitching, miner, of Conisborough, was summoned by his wife, Harriet Kitching, for neglecting to maintain her and the children. She also applied for a separation order.

Mr W Baddeley, was for the complainant, and Mr R.A.H. Tovey defended.

The complainant said the defendant was her husband. They were married on seventh of November 1869. They had eight children, four under 16 years of age. The 22nd December was the last time at her husband gave her any money for their maintenance. Her son, Arthur paid her 11 shillings per week and Tom, a boy of 12 gave her five shillings per week that he earned. She had also taken in washing for a livelihood.

Her husband worked at Denaby Main. He had not been very steady for a long time. On Saturday the 12th inst., she was compelled to leave him. She had resided with her sister ever since.

Cross-examined by Mr Tovey, the witness said that perhaps her husband did only work three days up to the Monday before Christmas. She knew the colliery stopped working until the following Sunday, the 30th December. She did not know how much he drew for the three days. She knew the colliery was also set down on New Year’s Day. She could not say whether her husband worked on the following day, 2 January or not. Her husband had never given her a copper since the 22nd
December. She was not aware that he drew 28/4 (£1.41). The day she left him she heard him say that he was fined at the court on the last Saturday in December, and had to pay £2. He told her that he had to borrow £1. The defendant and never offered her any money at all. She left the house about 8.30 on Saturday the 12th inst., only taking her clothes and the children’s. Her son had complained to her that he had not had sufficient food.

Arthur Kitching, glassblower at Messrs Kilner’s, said he paid his mother 11 shillings per week. So far as he knew his father had not given his mother any money since the 22nd December. On the 12th inst. he heard a disturbance, and went downstairs. He saw his father and mother there. There was some talk about money matters. He heard his father say that he would spend his money.

Mr Toby for the defence, remarked that the Bench must be satisfied that the defendant did wilfully neglect to provide his wife and children with reasonable maintenance. The defendant had not earned any money, through no fault of his own, as the colliery was set down for the greater part of the holiday time, therefore he could not provide his wife and children with reasonable maintenance.

The defendant, Edward Kitching, then gave evidence as to the pit been set down during the holiday time. On one occasion he put 7 shillings on the table for his wife, and she threw it at him with the remark, “I’m not going to take that – lot from you or anybody else.” His wife, and never comeplained to him,about not having sufficient money for maintenance, and the only thing she complained about was the inadequate supply of coal.

Cross-examined by Mr Baddeley:

Have you had plenty to eat this month?

The defendant: Yes up to last Saturday.

You have heard your son say he had not had plenty, and I suppose he sat at the same table?

He did not complain to me.

No, but you have heard it. He had complained? Yes.

What is the most you have given your wife when you have had a full week? 35 shillings

What have you done with the other?

I have minded my own business.

Now, I think you have got a good working place, haven’t you?

No, I haven’t.

Further cross examined, witness denied receiving such sums as £2 10s, £2 4s and £1 17s 6d from the colliery for various weeks wages.

The Chairman: The Bench don’t believe you have treated your wife as you ought to have done. In consideration of the wages you have received you what to paid a great deal more than you have done. She had lived partly what she earned her cell in what the sons contribute. We are not going to make a separation order, but will adjourn the case for a month in order to see how you treat your wife.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.