Mexborough and Swinton Times June 24, 1938
Struck Old Man With Stick
Conisborough Man Sent To Prison
How a 45-year-old Conisborough man made an entirely unprovoked attack on a man-nearly twice his age, after he had’ laughingly asked fora drink of beer, was described at Doncaster West Riding Court o n Saturday, when Benjamin G. Sheldrake (45), unemployed was sent to prison for two months for having inflicted grievous bodily harm on Thomas Bates (81), retired of Conisborough, on June 16th.
Inspector Wolfe said that on June 16th Bates wa this s sitting’ on a seat in Old Road, Conisbrough, with several other men, when the prisoner passed with two bottles of beer in his pockets.
One man said, “Give us a drink, Ben,” and Bates said, “Yes, give us all a drink.” Sheldrake came back and adopted a very fierce attitude, saying, “I have had it in for you for some time,” he struck Bates with his walking stick.
In evidence Bates said he had never given Sheldrake any provocation.
Thomas Johnson, one of Bates’s companions, declared, “I should have been the one to have been attacked, I asked for the beer.”
Inspector Wolfe; Even if you did ask for the beer there was no reason for anyone to, be attacked?—No.
Sheldrake, who pleaded “not guilty,” said he could not remember attacking Bates. He was drunk and he deeply regretted the incident. He was sorry it had happened and wanted to make an apology. ‘
Addressing Sheldrake, the Chairman (Mr. Mark Nokes) said one of the safest places when one did not know about what one was doing was prison. “You can try it for two months,” he added.