Lost pigs; a drinking fountain, Christmas in the Workhouse, Odd Fellows and other stuff
1844 – Odd Fellows Meeting at Weobley
“The ancient town of Weobley was roused from its usual dullness by the proceedings of the Odd Fellows connected with the Star of the Valley Lodge, of the Wolverhampton Unity”
Late afternoon saw the church bells pealing out, as many people came into the town from nearby villages to contribute for the benefit of the Widow and Orphans Fund.
130 friends and brothers assembled in the lodge room at the Bell Inn, their breasts adorned with rosettes; the room was extensively decorated with flowers and evergreens, and outside there were lamps arranged into a star shape, surrounded by flowers which spelled out the name of the lodge, which had only been established for six months.
150 people sat down to tea and nibbles, after which many songs were sung by the brothers present.
Mr. Ribbon of Hereford was hired for the evening, and everyone tripped the light fantastic toe until the early hours.
1845 – Wanted – Master and Matron for Union Workhouse at Weobley
The man and his wife had to be without incumbrance, and would be required to perform such duties as laid down by the Rules and Regulations of the Poor Law Commissioners.
The joint salary was to be £50 a year.
1849 – Christmas in the Workhouse at Weobley
The inmates of Weobley Union Workhouse were given a banquet of roast beef and plum pudding, with plenty of cider to wash it down.
The beef was donated by an anonymous gentleman in the parish.
1857 – Strange Case of the Lost Pig at Weobley
Mr. Ford spent several days searching for one of his sows which had mysteriously disappeared – he traveled more than a hundred miles, but to no avail.
At the time of the disappearance, a steam threshing machine was working outside his house, and it was a full three weeks later that Mr. Ford discovered his missing pig buried under the straw. The poor animal had had nothing to eat or drink, and was heavy with piglets, but with much care and attention she recovered from her imprisonment and soon produced 10 piglets.
1858 – Kick from Horse Kills Weobley Man
William Taylor aged 67 was loading potatoes onto a cart, when suddenly the horse lashed out and kicked him in the abdomen.
The surgeon, Mr. Lomax, was immediately called, but he could see that there was nothing he could do, as the bowels were horribly ruptured.
William died shortly afterwards.
1859 – Weobley Drinking Fountain
C. Lomax; The Marquis of Bath, and others, all put money into the repair and restoration of the public pump in Weobley, which had been out of use for a considerable time.
The pump was not only repaired, but all the appliances of a drinking fountain were added for the “interest and comfort” of the inhabitants of Weobley.
1899 – Drunken Man runs Riot in Weobley
William James of no fixed abode was hauled before the court after behaving atrociously in Weobley.
He violently assaulted two women and exposed himself whilst being exceedingly drunk, then followed up by assaulting the policeman called to the scene.
In the end, after general mayhem, P.Cs Barton and Baynham managed to handcuff William James, and tied his legs together, whilst avoiding being bitten!
In Court, he was ordered to be imprisoned for two months for assaulting the women; two months for exposing himself, and two months for the assault on the police, along with a fine of 5s plus costs for the drunkenness.
When William was being taken from the lock up to a conveyance to take him to Hereford, he became very violent; kicking, biting and shouting like a madman. Once again he was handcuffed (with great difficulty) and tied by the legs, before being bodily lifted into the conveyance.
1899 – Death of a Weobley Miser
70 year old Elizabeth Wood of Weobley died suddenly on Boxing Day.
She had been ill for some considerable time, but lived as a pauper with few comforts. It turned out that she had ample money to live well, and at her inquest the Coroner said it was a matter for regret that she had lived in such a miserable condition unnecessarily.