The Times, Friday, Mar 02, 1832; pg. 4; Issue 14789; col C


                                         SPRING ASSIZES.
                                             ---------------
                                        APPLEBY, FEB. 20.

                                 THE WHITEHAVEN RIOTS.
       JACKSON V. THE INHABITANTS OF ALLERDALE WARD
                                        ABOVE DERWENT.

Mr. BLACKBURN stated the case. The action was brought by Mr. JACKSON, of the
Black Lion Inn, in Whitehaven, for injuries which his house had sustained by the
violence of a riotous and lawless mob. On the 28th of May last, being His
Majesty's birth-day, a number of gentlemen of Whitehaven and the neighbourhood,
as had been the usual custom, had fixed to dine at the Black Lion Inn; and a
gentleman of the name of Mr. Isaac LITTLEDALE was requested to take the chair.
Now in this county the political parties were divided into Blues and Yellows;
and Mr. LITTLEDALE was what was called a Blue. The Yellows wished to introduce a
new custom; and instead of going to the Black Lion, they mustered in very
considerable numbers at Whitehaven-castle, to dine. In the early part of the
day, the colliers in Lord LONSDALE's employment began to parade the streets,
carrying yellow flags; and shortly before the hour fixed for the dinner, they
broke into the Black Lion, and began to destroy the dishes, glasses, bottles,
&c., and threatened they would pull the house down stone by stone, if the dinner
went on. They were got out this time; but came back again, with yellow flags and
music; again they broke into the house, and recommenced their work of
destruction. They were got out a second time, and again they came back with an
effigy of Mr. BLAMIRE, dressed in the clothes of Mr. PEILE; and they threatened
to pull the house down, and, in fact, commenced the work by breaking nearly all
the windows in the house. At a later period of the night they returned to the
attack, armed with sticks, jumpers, and bludgeons. They were only prevented from
destroying the house by the exertions of Lord LONSDALE's stewards, who had gone
amongst them, and ordered them to go home. When Mr. PEILE desired them to go
away, they shouted, "D--n you, why did you bring us here, and now are going to
desert us?"

Two servants of the Black Lion Inn proved, that on the 28th of May, a great
number of colliers forced their way into the kitchen, and broke many dishes and
covers. They said they would take all their lives. There were 1,400 of them, who
would pull down the house stone by stone; and if that would not do, they would
blow it up with powder. After dinner, they threw stones, and broke the
commercial room windows with picks. Another witness deposed to the breaking of
the dining-room windows by the colliers. They broke the front door with sticks
and stones, and when some of the rioters were seized, the mob outside shouted
that unless they were given up they would pull down the house. The prisoners
were released; and the rioters went away. They returned about 10 o'clock, and
renewed the attack with picks. Mr. PEILE, the steward of Lord LONSDALE, ordered
them to go home, when the colliers cried, "Why were we brought here, if we are
not to be backed?" Mr. HAMILTON, wine-merchant, one of the party, said that when
the mob were beating at the inn door, he ordered them to desist, but they said
they would not give over till they got Mr. BLAMIRE (the successful candidate) or
his heart. Stones were then thrown, one of which knocked off the witness's hat,
which fell outside. Stones continued to fly at the window. Witness took a chair
bottom to protect his head, and desired the mob to give him his hat; but they
tore it in pieces. The party were driven from the room, and the mob commenced
beating at the door. The fan-light was broken, and part of the panels broken in.
The mob were striking with jumpers (one was produced in court - it is an iron
instrument, about 2½ feet long, and an inch and a half in diameter, with one
sharp end. It is used by colliers in blasting.) Witness was confined to his bed
for some time in consequence of the blow received on his eye. He has nearly lost
the use of his eye. Several watchmen then deposed to witnessing the outrage. The
mob carried an effigy which they said was Mr. BLAMIRE's. One of Lord LONSDALE's
managers was cheering them on. The colliers were armed with picks, jumpers, and
sticks. They said "We will pull down the Black Lion, and blow it up." On
cross-examination, one of the watchmen said he had told Mr. JACKSON the names of
some of the most active rioters. The breakage of the dishes, glasses, &c.,
amounted to 21L.; the papering and painting bill was 8L.; the carpentry bill,
17L.; the painting, repairing of windows, &c., was 50L.

Mr. COLTMAN, for the defendants, contended that there had been no riot with a
felonious intention; for if the rioters had meant to pull down the Black Lion,
there was nothing to prevent them. The mere bluster of a few drunken men was not
to be interpreted literally; nor was the breaking of a few windows in an
election riot to be construed into a felonious act: if it were so, the people of
England would be most effectually gagged. In the second place, he contended that
Mr. JACKSON was not entitled to recover, because he had not complied with the
provisions of the act in prosecuting the rioters whose names he had received.

His LORDSHIP said, if Mr. JACKSON had not used all diligence against the rioters
whose names he knew, he deprived himself of all remedy. The main question,
however, was, had the rioters a felonious intention?

The Jury retired, and were absent nearly two hours, when they returned into
court; and the foreman said, "We find that there was no felonious intention on
the part of the rioters to demolish the house, but merely to annoy the party."

His LORDSHIP said, "That is a verdict for the defendant; the other points being
immaterial."