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CUMBERLAND COUNTY MEETING.
Agreeably to the requisition inserted in our last, a Meeting of the
Nobility, Clergy, Gentry and Freeholders of this County, was held at Wigton on
Wednesday last, in the Market-place, where hustings were erected for the
accommodation of the speakers. The general opinion was that four to five thousand
persons were assembled.
J. C. CURWEN, M. P. moved that Thomas SALKELD, Esq., the High Sheriff
do take the chair, which was carried by acclamation. The business of the day,
commenced at a quarter before one o'clock.
The High Sheriff opened the proceedings by stating the object of the
Meeting. He trusted the people assembled would patiently hear all that might be
offered to them, and that Gentlemen would confine themselves to the objects
of the requisition, which was then read by Mr. BLEAYMIRE the Under-sheriff.
Wilfred LAWSONEsq., the Meeting that this was the first county which
had stood forward on the present occasion. The interest of the Constitution
was deeply involved in that day's discussion, and he hoped that it would be
conducted with freedom and fairness, with firmness and temper. Whilst they were
inquiring into the questionable proceedings of others, they should be careful
that they subjected themselves to no complaint. If a full complete investigation
into any transactions was ever necessary, it was into those at Manchester. He
hoped the example of this county, would be generally followed. The proper
expression of the public voice was always the best means of securing the rights
and privileges of the People. He then read the following resolutions which
were unanimously adopted.
1st, That it is the undoubted right of the subject to hold Meetings
for the purpose of considering any matter of Public concernment, and of adopting
such resolutions thereon as to those assembled may seem meet, consistently
with the Constitution of the realm.
2nd. That the interference of the executive Government (more
especially by a military force) with this right, while it is exercised in a lawful
manner, is a gross violation of the Constitution, and an invasion of the most
sacred privileges of the People.
3rd. That while we are resolved steadily to discountenance all acts of
popular violence, as both criminal in themselves and peculiarly mischievous
to the interest of the people, we feel it equally our duty to maintain our
rights by law established, being firmly determined to oppose all encroachments
upon the Constitution, by whomsoever they may be attempted, as alike destructive
of the freedom, the peace, and the welfare of the Country.
4th. That the right of the subject to Meet and deliberate upon public
affairs, appears to have been violated in the late transactions at Manchester,
as far as they have hitherto been made known to us, and it is the more
especially incumbent upon us to direct our attention towards those events, inasmuch
as they were also attended with the loss of life, and other grievous injuries
to a number of his Majesty's subjects.
5th. That we have seen with astonishment and deep regret the
approbation which his Royal Highness the Prince Regent, has, to the manifest
obstruction of the administration of justice, been advised by his Ministers, to express
at a time when it was impossible that the circumstances connected with those
lamentable transactions; could have been fully brought under his Royal
Highness's consideration; and that we regard with equal concern, the extraordinary
answer which his Royal Highness has since been advised to return, to the
representations of the first corporate body, in the United Kingdom.
6th. That without pronouncing any opinion upon the objects of the
Meeting at Manchester, or the manner in which it was assembled, we hold that the
circumstances attending its dispersion demand an immediate and ample
investigation; and we therefore feel it our duty, humbly, to petition his Royal
Highness the Prince Regent to assemble Parliament, with as little delay as possible,
that a full, strict and solemn inquiry be instituted into the whole matter,
and that the wisdom of the Legislature may be specially directed to consider the
present distressed, and alarming state of the country.
7th. That the address after it is signed, shall be transmitted to the
Earl of Thanet, to be by him presented to his Royal Highness, the Prince
8th. That the members for the County of Cumberland be earnestly
requested to support every measure in Parliament connected with the above
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