Eeels, cricket clubs, free shoes and more

1834 – Woman Dies in Brewhouse Copper

Mr. Cawley, a Veterinary Surgeon, was on his way home to Kington after attending a patient in the early hours of the morning, and as he passed the Lamb Inn he heard terrible cries and screams for help.

Mr. Cawley tried to rouse the sleeping inmates of the house, but having no luck he moved on to the neighbours – again with no luck.

With great difficulty he traced the fading cries to the brewhouse, where he found 73 year old Mary Price, a long time assistant brewer at The Lamb, had fallen into the copper which unfortunately was full of boiling water at the time.

She was still just about alive, but perhaps fortunately for her, she died before she could be removed.

Such a sad and horrible end for a lady known for her industry and honesty;  she had saved an incredible £150 from her hard earned pay, £50 of which she had lent to other people and the rest she had hidden in her house.

1841 – Would-be Beer Sellers Refused License

The magistrates assembled at Kington decided not to “grant the prayer of several parties of beer sellers” who wanted to become licensed victuallers, because they thought that there were more than enough in the town already.

1841 – Cruelty to Cattle

Several cows in Kington were found to have had their tails cut off, and a reward of five pounds was offered for any information leading to the conviction of the perpetrators.

Elsewhere in the county, horses were suffering the same fate.

1842 – The “Badger” Fight!

William Thomas, alias Bill the Badger, and Edward Thomas alias Ned the Badger, two brothers, were found drunk and fighting in Church Street, Kington.

When P.C. Wilson and Constable William Lloyd approached them, the badger boys thought it a good idea to resist arrest and scuffle with the plods instead of each other.

When in court, the rather sorry boys admitted the offences and promised never to do it again, whereupon the magistrates (probably trying to suppress a smile) took their previous good character into consideration and were not too stern with the fines.

1847 – Accident at Kington Wool Factory

Thomas Stocker, a 12 year old boy had been working for Mr. Swain, the owner of a wool manufactory, for some two weeks.  He was employed for the task of plucking wool from the machine and had been cautioned by Mr. Swain on the dangers, who had also given him instructions on what to do or not to do.

Unfortunately, the glove he was wearing became caught in the “plucker” when he disregarded safety precautions and his hand was dragged in to the machinery.

Once released, he was taken home and treated by the surgeon, but although he was recovering well initially, tetanus set in and he subsequently died.

Mr. Swain said that in his 30 years in business he had often employed boys of 10 or 12, including his own child, and that the machinery was in good working order, but that on his own admission Thomas had disregarded the safety instructions.

The jury returned a verdict of Accidental Death, but said that inexperienced boys should not be employed in such work in the future.

1857 – Imminent Opening of Leominster and Kington Railway

It was announced that the line would be formally opened on 28th July 1857, with a public lunch at the Oxford Arms Hotel in Kington at one o’clock precisely.

It was something that was looked forward to with great joy, as it marked the chance for huge opportunity for inhabitants of the town of Kington.

1857 – Kington Lammas Fair

The annual fair was held on 3rd August, and was deemed to be the largest for many years, with a full supply of dealers and stock changing hands at top prices.  the sheep and lamb trade was unusually high.

1859 – Kington Cricket Club Re-Opens

After many years without a cricket club, a new one was set up in 1859, after many young determined men threw themselves into the task.

A field between the town and the railway station was obtained, and many stalwarts of the town agreed to be honorary members.  The team went from strength to strength and became very good in later years.

1859 – Young Woman Dies of Syphilis in Kington

Elizabeth Eddings, a 21 year old girl, died suddenly at the house of her parents in, James and Jane Eddings of Kington and as happens in villages, rumours abounded as to whether she had been murdered,  as it was known that she had horrible marks on her face and head.

The Coroner, N. Lanwarne Esq. held an inquest along with W. Blakely Esq., Surgeon of Kington.  The Surgeon and the jury inspected the body, and very quickly realised that Elizabeth had advanced syphilis.

Elizabeth was one of six children and although she had been in service she never stayed long in any one job, and eventually became a prostitute working in Worcester, Wolverhampton, Birmingham and Bromyard for some three years.  When she became very ill, she returned home in a dreadful state – shoeless, ragged clothes and swollen eyes, not to mention the terrible sores on her head and back.  She was also filthy, and once her tattered clothing was removed it was apparent that the chronic sores and syphilitic eruptions had been there for some considerable time.  She was also an alcoholic.

She quickly went downhill and died a short time after returning home.

The verdict at the inquest was Death by the Visitation of God from natural causes, and from erysipelas on head and face produced from exposure to cold and privation, operating upon a constitution tainted with syphilis.

That silenced the rumour mongers!

1863 – Huge Eel at Kington

Two men from Kington were walking across a field near Titley when they saw what they thought was a large snake.  They approached it, and discovered that it was in fact an enormous eel, which was later proved to weigh five and a quarter pounds.

1866 – Kington National Schools

The annual distribution of shoes and boots to children attending the Kington National Schools took place at the end of December 1865, and 60 pairs were given out to those who had been present at school for the most number of days since the last Government inspection.

The boots this time were made by Mr. James Knowles of High Street, Kington, and were of top quality.