|On the Road:|
|In the mid 1700's cattle plague had become a problem, and some Welsh drovers were stranded in Kent, not being able to move their cattle. With the growing realisation of the link between long distance movement of stock and the transmission of disease, farmers became less willing to let pastures and closes to drovers. Drovers were known to become aggressive when their interests were being threatened, as we see from the Somerset Quarter Sessions of 1657.
"William Jenkins with many other Welshmen treated at Thomas Hoddinot's house with Mr William Knoyle of Sandford to buy a close of grass to put their cattle in and not agreeing they drew their swords.............."|
At the Quarter Sessions at Stow-on-the-Wold on September 29th September 1796, a Gentleman drover from Radnor pleaded guilty to an offence:
"Whereas I, Thomas Jones, of Oxhall, in the county of Radnor, Gent, did violently Assault and beat, aided by eight others, my drovers, without provocation at one o'clock of the morning of the 22d August last, John Walker. Esq; Lord of the Manor of Guiting Power, otherwise Lower Guiting, in the county of Glocester, of which offence I was convicted before Powell Snell, Esq; and bound down to the next General Quarter Sessions; I do now hereby acknowledge the greatness of the offence, and for myself and my servants beg pardon of the said John Walker, Esq; and thank him for stopping this prosecution, on condition that I reimburse him his expenses and also deposit Ten Guineas for the use of the Poor of Lower Guiting afore-said, not receiving Alms, at the discretion of the above Magistrate."
As witness my hand, THOMAS JONES