Obtaining Two Shillings by False Pretences

July 1878

Mexborough times 19 th July.

Obtaining Two Shillings (10p) by False Pretences

John Bellowes of Conisbrough was charged by Ellen Willis with obtaining two shillings by false pretences from her, at Wath, on 6 June.

Mr G.B.Willies prosecuted.

The prosecutrix, said her brother had lived at their house since her father’s death. On the day in question the prisoner came to her house. She saw him, and he said to her,” they call you, Miss Willis, and your name is Ellen.” He then said her brother Thomas had sent him to her for five shillings. He said that he had been to the colliery for a load of coals, and that a corve had fallen from the screen and lamed his horse. It cut it across the fetlock. He was carting coal to Swinton, and he should have to get another horse.

She asked what his name was, and he said he was “Beresford”. She asked him who had authorised him to come to her, and he said “Thomas”. She said she had not got 5 shillings he then said “how the devil am I to get my coals home,”? And she must let him have two shillings or it would cost her father 30 shillings.

Thomas Willis, secretary of the Milton Main colliery Co Ltd, said he lived at Wath. The prisoner had worked at the colliery pit; he had been left nearly 2 years now. He had never carted any coals to his knowledge. He worked as a labourer at the colliery. He (witness) did not see the prisoner on 6 June. He was at Crowle on that day. He never sent him to his sister for five shillings.

PC Baker said he apprehended him at Rotherham on Monday last. He saw him in Bridge gate. He charged him with the offence, and he replied that he was going to get something to eat. He took him to the police office.

The prisoner, in defence, said that he did not get the money by false pretences. He was destitute for everything, and if he had stolen the money or anything of the kind, he would have been locked up just the same. He could not get work. Even young men had a great difficulty in getting work in his profession as a Collier. He was an old man, getting on to 60 years of age, and he knew very well that if he asked for work they would look at him 100 times before they would give him work. His family was in a very back condition, but he had held a house at Conisbrough for about 12 months.

He was obliged to borrow the money through under and if the magistrates wish to know anything about him, they might ask his wife and children.

The chairman remarked that he had not been living with his wife and children and therefore they were not a great very great expense to him.

The prisoner said he had been going about the country seeking for work, as it was no use living with his family and making them worse than they were.

Committed to the sessions for trial

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