Newspaper Stories 1801-1849 - Hartley-Kent: The Website for Hartley

Go to content

Newspaper Stories 1801-1849

Advowson of Hartley    1801 Jul 07
All Saints' Church, Hartley    1802 Aug 04
All Saints' Church, Hartley    1804 Dec 07
All Saints' Church, Hartley    1830 Dec 07
Allen, Edward (Rev)    1830 Dec 07
Allen, Robert    1801 Aug 04
Andrus, H    1838 Feb 17
Andrus, W    1838 Feb 17
Andrus, William    1840 Oct 27
Andrus, William    1841 Dec 28
Armstrong, James    1844 Jan 30
Armstrong, James    1848 Jan 11
Ash Fire    1840 Oct 27
Assault at Longfield    1847 Jan 23
Athletics    1842 Oct 18
Attempted Rape    1828 Aug 19
Bankruptcy    1849 Dec 25
Bensted, Mrs    1845 Sep 16
Bensted, W    1838 Feb 17
Bensted, William    1840 Dec 15
Bensted, William    1841 Apr 10
Bensted, William    1844 Jan 30
Bensted, William    1848 Jan 11
Beven, Thomas    1841 Apr 10
Black Lion Pub, Hartley    1828 Aug 19
Black Lion Pub, Hartley    1841 Nov 30
Bowers, Amelia    1828 Aug 19
Bowers, Master    1821 Apr 27
Bristow, Mr    1847 Jun 08
Burberry, Thomas    1801 Aug 04
Burglary at Longfield    1835 Mar 17
Burglary at Meopham    1834 Nov 11
Burglary at Meopham    1835 Aug 04
Cholera at Hartley    1849 Nov 02
Church Organs    1840 May 19
Clarke, Richard    1802 Aug 04
Comfort, William    1833 Oct 08
Comfort, William    1834 Oct 14
Connor, Hannah    1834 Oct 21
Cooper, William    1844 Jan 30
Corn Laws Repeal    1844 Jan 30
Couchman, Thomas    1801 Aug 04
Cricket, Hartley    1812 Jul 31
Cricket, Hartley    1812 Aug 13
Cricket, Hartley    1847 Jul 03
Cricket, Hartley    1848 Jul 01
Dartford Description    1846 Dec 05
Dartford Market    1844 Jan 30
Dartford Workhouse    1836 Sep 17
Dartford Workhouse    1840 Jun 23
Day, Ann    1841 Jul 13
Day, Charles    1834 Nov 11
Day, Charles    1835 Aug 04
Day, John    1841 Apr 10
Dixon, J Murray (Rev)    1840 Jun 23
Doodney, Joseph    1827 Mar 27
Doodney, Richard    1827 Mar 27
Durling, William    1844 Jan 30
Edmeads, Percy    1834 Jan 28
Edmeads, William    1834 Jan 28
Fairby Farm, Hartley    1812 Oct 16
Farrant, William    1849 Dec 25
Fawkham Court Farm    1833 Nov 26
Fawkham, Old Manor House    1847 Mar 09
Fawkham, Old Manor House    1847 Mar 16
Fawkham, Old Manor House    1847 Mar 30
Fire at Fawkham    1847 Jun 08
Fire at Longfield    1836 Jun 25
Fox Hunting    1802 Feb 05
General Election    1832 Dec 28
General Election    1833 Jan 31
General Election    1835 Jan 24
General Election    1837 Aug 01
General Election    1837 Aug 15
Grave Robbing    1841 Aug 07
Gravesend Hospital    1848 Aug 12
Green Man Pub, Longfield    1838 Feb 17
Hartley Bottom Road    1812 Jul 31
Hartley Court    1821 Apr 27
Hartley House    1820 Jun 15
Hartley House    1845 Sep 16
Hayes, Mr    1848 May 14
Hodsoll, W    1844 Jan 30
Holland, John    1835 Aug 04
Hop Growing    1848 Jan 11
Horse Theft at Hartley    1840 Dec 15
Killick, Henry    1801 Aug 04
King, Thomas    1835 Mar 17
King's Arms Pub, Hartley    1848 May 14
Letchford, Jeremiah    1834 Jan 28
Lines, Mary    1847 Jan 23
Longfield Church    1840 Jun 23
Longfield Court    1817 Apr 17
Longfield Court    1826 Apr 28
Longfield Court    1835 Mar 17
Longfield Court    1842 Oct 04
Longfield Cricket Club    1840 May 19
Lost Dog    1841 Nov 30
Martin, James    
Martin, James    1834 Oct 14
Martin, Richard    1801 Aug 04
Mills, George    1801 Aug 04
Morgan, Thomas    1849 Jan 09
Muggeridge, Henry    1812 Oct 16
New House Farm, Hartley    1831 May 10
New House Farm, Hartley    1831 Sep 20
Northfleet Inquest    1808 Aug 19
Parsons, Owen    1831 May 10
Parsons, Owen    1831 Sep 20
Pennis Farm, Fawkham    1820 Apr 22
Pigeon Shooting    1838 Feb 17
Pigeon Shooting    1839 Mar 17
Pigeon Shooting    1848 May 14
Ploughing Match    1830 Oct 12
Ploughing Match    1832 Oct 09
Ploughing Match    1833 Oct 08
Ploughing Match    1834 Oct 14
Poaching at Cobham    1834 Jan 28
Railway Proposed    1834 Nov 24
Rates    1808 Mar 25
Raymond, William    
Roads - Dartford to Sevenoaks    1809 Jul 07
Roads - London to Dartford    1824 Sep 08
Roads, Gravesend    1837 Feb 07
Russell, James    1845 Apr 29
Schools, Hartley    1840 Oct 03
Schools, Hartley    1842 Aug 16
Skillen, James    1807 Jul 31
Smith, John    1807 Jul 31
Sunday Trading    1833 Oct 13
Taylor, Thomas    1835 Mar 17
Theft at Fawkham    
Theft at Fawkham    1801 Aug 04
Theft at Hartley    1801 Aug 04
Theft at Hartley    1841 Apr 10
Theft at Longfield    
Theft at Longfield    1807 Jul 31
Theft of Crops at Fawkham    1845 Apr 29
Tithes at Hartley    1830 Dec 07
Tithes at Hartley    1843 Oct 17
Treadwell, Francis    1812 Oct 16
Treadwell, John    1828 Aug 19
Treadwell, William    1841 Nov 30
Treadwell, William    1845 Apr 29
Treadwell, William    1847 Jun 08
Waterloo Collection    1815 Aug 26
Weather, Storms    1809 Feb 14
Weller, David    1830 Oct 12
Weller, David    1832 Oct 09
Wellington, William    1835 Mar 17
Wells, William    1801 Aug 04
West Yoke Farm, Ash    1841 Dec 28
Wharton, Emma    1847 Jan 23
Wharton, Mary    1847 Jan 23
Wood, Thomas    1801 Aug 04
Woodins, Hartley    1801 Aug 04

1801 Jul 07 Sale of Advowson of Hartley Kentish Gazette
"Rectory of Hartley, Kent.  To be sold by auction by Messrs Skinner and Dyke, on Thursday the 23rd of July, at 12 o'clock at Garraway's Coffee House, Change Alley, Cornhill, London, by order of the executors and trustees of the late Mr Richard Forrest, deceased.

The Advowson and next presentation to the rectory of Hartley, situate 5 miles from Northfleet and Southfleet, and within 10 of Dartford and Rochester - a beautiful, fine, healthy part of the county of Kent; comprising the great and small tithes of the parsih; containing about 1,200 acres of very good land, with a parsonage house, now in tenements, tithe barn, and outbuildings, and 9 acres of glebe land, producing an income of about £230 per annum.  The present incumbent 52 years of age.... Messrs Skinner and Dyke, Aldergate Street, London."

[The advowson is the right to appoint a Church of England vicar to the church, they still exist today but you can't put them up for sale like this any more.  In many cases such as Hartley, the owner failed to appoint someone in time and then the advowson falls into the hands of the bishop.  The indelicate reference to the age of Rev Bradley is to give the buyer an indication of how long they might have to wait until they could exercise this right.  In Hartley's case, Rev Bradley lived to 1826 by which time Edward Allen owned the advowson, he had no problems appoining a new rector as he chose...... himself!!]

1801 Aug 04 Theft Charge at Hartley Kentish Gazette
Summer Assizes at Maidstone, John Cartier esq, sheriff.: "William Wells, for breaking open the dwelling house of Thomas Wilson in Hartley (Woodins) and stealing a quantity of bread and pork, his property, fined 1s and imprisoned 12 months in the house of correction."

Thomas Wood, for stealing a fat hog from Thomas Edmeads of Hartley - discharged by proclamation.

Thomas Couchman, aged 40, George Mills, 38, Richard Martin, 26, for stealing in Fawkham, 2 sheep, the property of Robert Allen, and 4 sheep adn 4 bushels of wheat, of Thomas Burberry; and 4 sheep of Henry Killick, and various similar offences - Couchman acquitted, Mills and Martin - death, reprieved."

1802 Feb 05 Fox Hunt Kentish Gazette
"On Friday last a bag fox was turned out at Ightham Common, before Mr Simpson's harriers, of Fairlawn.  He went away towards Seal, and took over the hills to Kingsdown, and onto Farningham; there he turned to the right, and went away for Ash, from thence to Greenstead Green; he then took off to the right for Hartley, and on to Longfield, Meopham, Nursted, Shinglewell, Cobham, Shorn and Gravesend, and was taken alive at Milton, near Mr Gilby's of Dento, after a chase of between 50 and 60 miles; he had 20 minutes law."

1802 Aug 04 Obituary of Rev Richard Clarke Morning Chronicle
"Died suddenly on Saturday morning, 31st ultimo, in the 83rd year of his age, the Rev Richard Clarke, formerly rector of St Philips, Charleston, South Carolina, and late rector of Hartley, Kent.  He was a good man, a profound scholar, and of great philanthropy, an able and zealous advocate for the doctrine of universal love and universal restitution, which his voluminous publications testify, and that his mind was highly illumined, deeply penetrating into the hidden mysteries of genuine religion."

1804 Dec 07 Rev Bradley of Hartley Kentish Gazette
Marriage of Rev Bradley's daughter

1807 Jul 31 Theft at Longfield Kentish Gazette
Kent Summer Assizes: "John Smith alias Clarke, 33, for stealing in the dwelling house of Alexander Barnard, in Gravesend, a brown cloth box coat, his property, and also £2 and £1 3s in money, the property of Francis Steer - He was also charged with stealing a velveteen jacket, a waistcoat, a pair of velveteen breeches, and £7 4s in money, in the dwelling house of James Skillen, in Longfield - Transported 7 years."

1808 Mar 25 County Rates Kentish Gazette
Hartley (rental - £950, rates £3.19.2), Ash (£2,594, £10.16.2), Longfield (£441, £1.16.9), Fawkham (£750, £3.2.6), Ridley (£574, £2.2.10)

1808 Aug 19 Road Acident Kentish Gazette
"On Friday afternoon one of the London coaches, in passing over a part of the road near Northfleet, which had been newly repaired and had been very much raised in the middle, overset; when an officer of the Surrey militia, who was an outside passenger, feeling that the vehicle had lost its balance, made a spring from his seat, in order to escape the threatened danger; but, unfortunately, not haveing jumped far enough, the coach fell upon him as he was risig from the ground, and crushed im in a most miserable manner.  His back bone, several of his ribs, and other bones were broken, and he was otherwise so dreadfully bruised, that he languished till Saturday morning, and expired in great agony."

1809 Feb 14 Extreme Weather Kentish Gazette
"Continued succession of rain which has followed the late thaw, almost without intermission" has caused flooding making Thanet an island again.  Poor state of roads led to 1 hour delay in the coach from London to Canterbury

1809 Jul 07 Turnpike Roads Kentish Gazette
Tolls on Dartford-Sevenoaks Turnpike: Coach/cart etc with 6 horses (old 1s 4d, new 2s), 4 (1s, N 1s 6d), 2 (6d, N 9d), 1 (4d, N 4d).  Drove of cattle - 10d per score (N 1s 3d), drove of sheep 5d per score (N 7½d).  Rent of tollgates in previous year: Orange Tree £123, Darenth £123, Farningham £64, Eynsford £122.

1812 Jul 31 Hartley Cricket Club Robert Pocock's Diary
This day was a cricketing match at Hartley Bottom, between Gravesend against Meopham and Hartley: Gravesend beat. There was also a donkey race.

1812 Aug 13 Hartley Cricket Club Robert Pocock's Diary
Cricketing between Gravesend and Meopham and Hartley in the Old Prince of Orange field.

1812 Oct 16 Theft at Hartley Kentish Gazette
West Kent Quarter Sessions: "Henry Mockeridge, for stealing in Hartley, about a gallon of wheat the property of Francis Treadwell - to be six months in Maidstone Bridewell…"

1815 Aug 26 Waterloo Collection Times
Collection for families of soldiers who died at Waterloo - £5 donated by Fawkham and £3 by Longfield

1817 Apr 17 Longfield Court for Sale Times
Longfield Court for sale - currently leased for 21 years from 1814 to Mr Andrus at rent of £175

1820 Apr 22 Pennis House, Fawkham Times
"Elegant Freehold villa and 261 acres of land - by Mr W M Stevens at the Mart on Tuesday May 16 at 12, by order of the assignees of Mr F Devey.

Pennis House and Farm, a very desirable and compact freehold estate, land tax redeemed, delightfully situated in Fawkham, a most romantic part of the county of Kent, and distant 4 miles from Farningham, 6 from Dartford, 6 from Gravesend and 21 from London; the property consists of an elegant residence, cased with Roman Cement, erected within a few years at a considerable expense, and calculaed for the occupation of a famiy of the first resepectability, surrounded by extensive pleasure grounds and plantations, the whole arranged with peculiar (sic) taste, and 261 acres of arable, meadow, pasture and coppice lands, a substantial farm house, barn, stabling, and requisite outbuildings, a convenient cottage residence, with capital garden,and 2 other cottages.  May be viewed by leave of the tenants ......

[A few fields of the Pennis estate are in the parish of Hartley]

1820 Jun 15 Hartley House to let Times
"To be let, with immediate possession, a newly-erected convenient small house (Hartley House), with garden, and 2 stall stables, chaise house, well of excellent water, 3 acres of pasture and orchard land, very pleasantly and salubriously situate in the parish of Hartley .... this will be found a very desirable situation for a small family wishing for a healthy situation or for a summer residence.  Apply to Mr Hooks solicitor, Dartford, or Mr Santer, 49 Chancery Lane, London

1821 Apr 27 Death at Hartley Court Canterbury Journal
"On Saturday, the 14th instant, th following singular and melancholy occurrence took place near Dartford.  The ladder that led up to a granary, belonging to Mr Bensted of Hartley Court, being deficient of some rounds, a rope with a loop at the end was affixed to enable persons to asend.  On the day in question, a boy, about 11 years of age, named Bowers, was found dead suspended by his neck in the loop of the rope."

1824 Sep 08 Improvements to Future A2 Morning Post
"New Roads.  Among the improvements undertaken in London and the environs, none seem more useful than the extensive works now going on for making new roads and levelling hills.  In Kent and Surrey the advantages gained this way are highly important.  Shooters Hill, which sometime since was almost insurmountable, is now much more easy of ascent.  The soil to a great depth has been cut away from the highest part, and thrown into the declivity, in consequence of which great relief is afforded to the horses, and the progress of travellers much accelerated.  Solid chalk hills have been cut through near Northfleet, and the road much improved.....  Similar exertions in other parts near London shew a spirit of activity which cannot fail in producing some of the best roads in the world."

1826 Apr 28 Longfield Court for Sale Canterbury Journal
"Manor and estate of Longfield, in Kent, 18 miles from town, 241 acres; a farm at Southfleet, 80 acres; and a marsh farm in the Isle of Grain, near Sheerness, 72 acres.

To be sold by auction by Messrs Robins at The Mart, London, on Thursday May 11, at 12 in 4 lots, by order of the representatives of the late Isaac Cooper esq.

The Manor of Longfield in Kent, between Farningham and Northfleet, extending over the whole parish.  Also the farm of 241 acres; the manor house, with garden and outbuildings; on lease to Mr Binstead (sic = Bensted), at £160 for 14 years.  It is held under the Archdeacon of Rochester for 21 years from 1821, at only £6 10s.

A farm at Southfleet, with good buildings, and 80 acres of land; on lease to Mr R Morris, a very old tenant, for 14 years from 1825 at £70; held for 21 years from 1822, at £8 17s 4d.

A valuable Marsh Farm of 72 acres, in the Isle of Grain, near Sheerness; let to Mr John Buckhurst, an old tenant, at £150 a year; held for 21 years from 1822 at £7 only.... Messrs Robins, Covent Garden, London."

1827 Mar 27 Theft Charge at Hartley South Eastern Gazette
"Kent Lent Assizes:  (11) Richard Doodeney, 22, labourer, for stealing a coat, value 10 shillings, the propety of Joseph Doodeney.  Discharged by proclamation."

[Discharged by proclamation usually meant no evidence was offered against them.  Although it appears Richard had spent 2 months on remand in Maidstone Gaol - South Eastern Gazette 27.1.1827.]

1828 Aug 19 Sexual Assault Charge at Hartley Canterbury Journal
Kent Assizes: "John Treadwell was put to the bar, charged with having attempted to violate the person of Amelia Bowers, an infant under the age of 12 years.

Prison had been admitted to bail; he was landlord of the Black Lion Public House, at Hartley, and is 78 years old.

The evidence was of a very doubtful nature, and it appeared the girl had always evinced extreme levity of conduct for so young a female.  She stated the prisoner had two years before attempted a similar act.

His lordship in summing up, commented strongly on the absence of testimony to shew that the original violence, two years ago, had injured the person of the prosecutrix; and the jury without hesitation acquitted the prisoner."

[Amelia died in 1840, aged only 23 - Hartley Parish Register]

1830 Oct 12 Ploughing Match Maidstone Journal
"Kentish Agricultural Association - The annual ploughing match took place on Thursday last, in a field in the occupation of Mr John Staples of Highlands in the parish of Sutton at Hone.  There were 35 fine teams of horses, belonging to the members of the assocation, with the turnrise and other ploughs, set to work, each having half an acre to plough.  The day being fine, brought to the field a large and most respectable meeting of gentlemen, agriculturists, servants, and labourers, and tradesmen of all classes.  It was considered one of the most pleasing and gratifying sights ever seen of that kind in the western part of the county of Kent.

The judges for the ploughing for this year were: Thomas Colyer esq, Southfleet; Mr Russell, Horton (Kirby); John Green esq, Eltham; Mr Sears, Dartford; Mr Russell, Swanscombe; Mr Solomon, Swanscombe and they awarded the premiums as follows:-

To George Stevens, servant to Mr Cooper of Sutton at Hones, with a turnrise plough and 4 horses - £3.
Thomas Levitt, servant to Mr Attree, Erith, the 2nd prize, £2
David Weller, servant to Mr Bensted of Hartley, the 3rd prize, £1 10s
Henry Bird, servant to Mr Sears of Dartford, the 4th prize, £1
Stephen Bassett, servant to Mr Elgar of Sutton at Hone, with a turnrise plough and 3 horses, £2
John Trull, servant to Mr John Staples, with a turnrise plough and 3 horses, the 2nd prize, £1 10s
Edward Vallins, servant to Mr John Shearley, Wollary Cray, £1

The unsuccessful ploughmen were all paid a small sum for encouragement, and several who were not entitled to premiums, received presents from the committee.

The company retired to the Hop Pole Inn, Farningham, to dine at 4 o'clock, and nearly 100 gentlemen and farmers, with their friends, sat down to an excellent dinner.  The worthy baronet, Sir Thomas Dyke, the president of the association, from ill health, was unable to preside; he however kindly supplied the table with some excellent venison and game from his park at Lullingstone Castle.  Percival Hart Dyke esq, took the chiar and Bertie Cator esq acted as vice-president.  In addition to the usual toasts and sentiments on such occasions, several excellent vocal performers highly entertained the company till a late hour.

The premiums for the shepherds and servants will be awarded by the committee as soon as they can conveniently meet to adjust them."

1830 Dec 07 Tithes at Hartley Maidstone Journal
"At his tithe audit, on Thursday last, the Rev M Allan (sic - should be E Allen), minister of Hartley, reduced his tithes ten per cent."

1831 May 10 New House Farm to let South Eastern Gazette
"To be let, from Michaelmas next.  A small compact farm, containing about 110 acres, in a ring fence, with convenient farm house and buildings, situate in the parish of Hartley, within 7 miles of the Market towns of Dartford and Gravesend.

The coming in will be easy.  For particulars, apply at the office of Mr Fooks, solicitor, Dartford, where a map of the estate may be seen."

[Given the advert of 30.9.1831 where it is said Owen Parsons is leaving the farm, it would seem this advert refers to New House Farm.]

1831 Sep 20 Sale at New House Farm Maidstone Journal
"New House Farm, Hartley, Kent: Valuable Live and Dead Farming Stock, Household Furniture etc To be sold by auction by George Mandy on Friday Sept 23rd 1831 by order of the proprietor Owen Parsons (removing) on the premises, New House Farm.  The valuable livestock comprises 5 useful draught horses, 1 active nag horse, a milch cow in calf, pigs and poultry.  The dead stock consists of 2 strong wagons, 3 good dung carts, 2 turnwrest ploughs, rolls, ox and other harrows, harness for 4 hores complete, hop poles, fire wood etc, and various articles of household furniture, brewing utensils etc" Catalogue available 3 days before sale, Sale to commence at 12 o'clock precisely.

1832 Oct 09 Ploughing Match Maidstone Journal
Kentish Agricultural Association: 4th annual ploughing match at Chinhams Farm, Farningham.  David Weller servant to Mr Bensted of Hartley, given 15 shillings encouragement award.

1832 Dec 28 General Election Liverpool Mercury
"At the West Kent election, Mr Rider said, 12 months ago the (secret) ballot would have had its opposition, but during the present elections he had been witness to such a system of corruption and intimidation that he was convinced that a full and fair exercise of the elective franchise could not be secured without it, and if returned to Parliament he should give his best support to that measure.  Long Continued cheering."

[Mr Rider was elected in 1832 for the Liberal party.  However it was not until the 1874 General Election that the secret ballot was used.]

1833 Jan 31 General Election Morning Chronicle
West Kent election intimidation of Blackheath Tradesmen led to all but 4 deserting Messrs Hodges and Rider when most wanted to vote for them.

1833 Oct 08 Ploughing Match Maidstone Journal
Kentish Agricultural Association: ploughing match at Mr Russell's land in Horton Kirby.  44 entrants.  3rd prize went to William Comfort, servant to Mr Bensted - 2 guineas.  The association now has 160 members.

1833 Oct 13 Double Standards Weekly Despatch
"A correspondent informs us that a reverend divine - a worthy parson-magistrate - residing within something less than a thousand miles of Dartford, in Kent, lately inflicted a fine of one pound upon a drover for the offence of driving cattle through a certain town or village on a Sunday.  Now, as it is alleged that cows belonging to this very parson are constantly driven through the same town or village, and as the Reverend Sabbath preserver is himself driven to Church in his carriage, making his coachman, footman and horses work on the Lord's Day for his personal convenience and ease, we are requested to inquire whether, in common justice, the pious gent ought not to inflict a fine upon himself for sabbath breaking?"

1833 Nov 26 Fawkham Court Farm for Sale South Eastern Gazette
"Fawkham Court Lodge Farm - Manor and Valuable Freehold Lands, containing 341 acres - to be sold by auction by Messrs Driver at the auction Mart on Wednesday the 18th December at 12 o'clock in 2 lots.

Very capital freehold estates, exonerated from the land tax, and in a fine sporting country, called Fawkham Court Farm, in the occupation of Mr William Crowhurst, comprising an excellent Farm House, Oasthouse, barns and all requisite agricultural buildings, and 292 acres of valuable hop ground, arable, meadow and woodlands, situate at Fawkham, about midway betwen the turnpike roads leading from London through Dartford to Dover, and through Farningham to Maidstone and Hythe; being 7 miles from Dartford, 5 from Farningham and only 22 from London.  And about 49 acres adjoining, in the respective occupations of Messrs Cooper and Smith and Mr Young.  Also the Manor of Fawkham, with all quitrents, rights, members, profits and emoluments thereto belonging.... Messrs Driver, Surveyors and Land Agents, 8 Richmond Terrace, Parliament Square, London."

[Maidstone Journal 24.12.1833 reported the outcome of the sale: "On Wednesday at the auction Mart there was a sale of the following property: The freehold Fawkham Court Lodge Farm estate at Fawkham, Kent, farm house, oasthouse, barns, and all requisite agricultural buildings, stabling etc, garden and 292 acres of hop ground, arable, meadow and woodlands; let for 7 years from 1830 at £120 pa.; also Park Field, containing 6a 3r 17p, let at £4 10s for the like term, together with the manor of Fawkham, with the quitrents, producing annually £1 17s 7d, and all other profits, rights, royalties and appurtenances; land tax redeemed; timber etc to be taken at a valuation - £4,820.  Church Down Farm adjoining, new built farm house, dairy, barns, stables, and buildings, orchar and land, in all 42a 1r 13p freehold, and land tax redeemed; let for 14 years from 1830 at £40 a year - £900."]

1834 Jan 28 Assault Charge Kentish Gazette
"William Edmeades, Percy Edmeades and Jeremiah Letchford, all of Longfield, have been committed by the Rev G Davies for trial at the next assizes, on a charge of night poaching on the land of Henry Edmeades esq at Cobham.  They were discovered by a servant of Mr Edmeades, whom they beat in a most inhuman manner, and by that means effected their escape at the time; but the man was fortunately enabled to distinguish and identify the parties previous to being struck."  [In spite of the paper claiming this was an open and shut case, all three were acquitted at the Assizes, William was said to ba aged 31, the other two 19 - South Eastern Gazette 18.3.1834.  Nowadays what the Kentish Gazette wrote about the case would not be allowed.]

1834 Oct 14 Kent Agricultural Association Maidstone Journal
Ploughing match - "The annual ploughing match of the above association took place on Tuesday last, in two fields at Franks Farm, Horton Kirby, in the possession of Mr Nicholas Ray, who, with a liberality which does him great credit, had provided at his house the most substantial refreshments for the friends and supporters of the institution.  The attendance of members was unusually numerous, a proof of their unabated zeal in forwarding the great and good cause in which they are united.

31 ploughs conteneded for the various prizes.   The ground, however, from the recent long and continued drought was in so hard and flinty a state as to render the exertions of the hardy competitors a work of extraordinary difficulty and labour.  Within a very short time after commencing 5 ploughs were in consequence compelled to decline the contest.  The lower field was in a better state than the upper, to plough which, to use the words of one of the ploughmen in it, was like ploughing a turnpike road.  There were but 7 ploughs at work in the lower field, which was a matter of regret, it being sufficiently larger and convenient for the whole number of ploughs entered.  The ploughs used were the common English turnrise, and the only exception as to the manner of using them was that of Lord Templemore's the horse of which were driven in a single instead of a double team, the effect of which, from the state of the ground, was evidently beneficial.  The work in the lower field was finished a full hour before that of the upper, which was not till 5 minutes after 3 o'clock..... The first premium £3 for 4 horses and a turnrise plough was given to William Tomlin, servant to Mr P Ray of Horton... the 5th ditto to William Conford, servant to Mr Bensted, of Hartley, £1.

A premium of £3 was given to James Martin, for having worked 40 years for Mr Bensted of Hartley, brought up a family of 8 chldren, and never received any parochial relief." (paper goes on to describe dinner at Black Lion, Farningham).

1834 Oct 21 Theft Charge at Fawkham South Eastern Gazette
West Kent Quarter Sessions: "Hannah Connor, 68, for stealing a silk shawl, value 1 shilling, the property of William Raymond at Fawkham - acquitted."

1834 Nov 11 Robbery at Meopham Kentish Gazette
"A robber shot.  On Wednesday night, Mr Murley, a gentleman of Meopham was disturbed at midnight, by the shutting of the door of his poultry house.  He immediately arose, and, notwithstandig his age (between 70 and 80) armed himself with a gun and proceeded to the spot; he found the door nearly closed and pushed it open with the muzzle of his gun, when he observed two men inside, one of whom, he states, put his hand on the barrel of the piece, when he (Mr M) drew back, and at the same insant received a blow from a bludgeon, which felled him to the ground and for the moment stunned him; on recovering from the effects of the blow, he missed the gun from his hand and saw the men making off, one being borne on the back of the other, with his clothes on fire.  Mr M returned into the house, and arming himself with a sword, again ventured out, and found the gun ear to where he fell, and on further search observed a basket containing various articles of provision, and a gabardine in which a dozen of his fowls had been deposited by the thieves.  The wounded man was carried only a short distanc by his companion, who left him under a hedge, where his groans were heard by Mr M during the remainder of the night, but apprehensive of danger, he was deterred from going to his assistance, and he remained there until about half past 4 o'clock, when Mr M hearing some labourers going to work, called to them, and with them went in search of the unfortunate wretch, whom they found in a deplorable condition, and conveyed him to a neighbouring beer-house.  The delinquent says Mr M was not struck until he had discharged the gun.  Surgical assistaance was procured from Gravesend, and on examination it was found that the thigh-bone was dreadfully shattered, the charge having passed through the small clothes, leaving a hole on each side not much larger than the muzzle of the gun, the orifice on each side of the clothes being alike burnt, as if the fire had passed through with the charge.  But faint hopes are entertained of his recovery.  His name is Charles Day, from the neighbouring parish of Hartley, and he has a family of 6 children; he refused to name his companion  Mr M's family, consisting of his wife, 2 maid servants, and a grandchild, were, as may be imagined, dreadfully alarmed at seeing his head and face covered with blood, and they were during the encounter screaming and calling loudly for assistance.  We understand that on Monday the Earl of Darnley and William M Smith esq, justices of the county, examined numerous witnesses, and that Day, and also a neighbour and companion of his, named John Hollands, having been distinctly identified by Mr Murley, the latter has been fully committed for trial at the next Kent Assizes, and a warrant for the commital of the former will be put in force as soon as he can be removed with safety."

[Charles Day was born in Hartley and lived at the time in Hartley Bottom Road, probably at Goldsmiths Cottage or possibly the next door Skips Cottage.  In spite of the injuries he lived to the age of 83, and was able to work as a farm labourer.  See 4 August 1835 for details of the trial.]

1834 Nov 24 Passenger Traffic from Gravesend to London South Eastern Gazette
Public notice: "London and Gravesend Railway Company being a continuation of the London and Greenwich Viaduct (to be incorporated by Act of Parliament).  Capital £600,000 in 30,000 shares of £20 each, deposit 10 shillings per share........

The London and Greenwich Railway, having received the sanction of Parliament, and a considerable portion of hte works being already performed and now fast advancing towards compleiton, within the estimates originally made, it has occurred to many persons who are friendly to that undertaking, as well as to the general formation of railways, that an extension of that mode of communication from Greenwich to Gravesend would not only prove an advantageous investment for capital, but to a commercial and political point of view, of the greatest public benefit.  A meeting has therefore taken place, under the auspices of the gentlemen whose naes are enumerated above, for the purpose of carrying the proposed measure into immediate operation, who have entered into a subscription whith other gentlemen for the purpose of defraying the expenses of a survey and application to parliament.

The advantages of a railway communication to all persons engaged in business who resort to Gravesend and particularly those connected with the arrival and departure of the foreign mails, numerous Indiamen and other vessels, which aare frequently and necessarily detained there, as well as to all persons travelling to every town on the Canterbury and Dover road and the coast of Kent, must in this case be peculiarly striking, more especially as the time will thereby be reduced from an average of 2 hours and a half to one hour.

An arrangement, satisfactory to both parties, has been effected between the gentlemen concerned in this undertaking and the Greenwich Railway Company, for the passage of their engines and carriages along the Greenwich Viaduct.

The ascertained number of passengers going by steam boats to and from London and Gravesend alone, during the last year, exceeded 750,000.

The following is an estimate of the returns derived from the present traffic on the line of the road, founded upon railway charges.

Stage Coach Passengers £25,884
Parcels by coaches and vans £5,237
Posting, and travelling by private carriages £9,325
Goods by common carriers £2,234
Goods by private carts not common carriers £5,780
Fish now actually forwarded by land carriage £265
Steam Boat passengers, 1/10 of the number now travelling between London and Gravesend £11,250
Total £59,975

Deduct Annual expense of locomotive power, repairs, taxes, rates, salaries and management £25,000

Net annual income £34,975

Nothing is assumed in this estimate for any indirect traffic on the Maidstone, or Ashford and Folkestone roads (although the committee believe that they might calculate upon a considerable revenue from that source), nor for any increase of traffic resulting from this improved mode of conveyance.  In the Liverpool and Manchester Railway, and other similar undertakings, and increase in the item of passengers alone  has been proved to have taken place to an extent varying from 75 to 300 per cent.

To accomplish this object, itis proposed that a coapital of £600,000 shall be raised 30,000 shares of £20 each; and that a deposit of 10 shillings per share shall be paid on subscribing, which shall be held applicable to defray all the incidental expenses incurred in preparing for, and obtaining an act of parliament etc.

The subscribers to be answerable beyond the amount of their actual deposits, should the act not be obtained; and if obtained, not beyond the amount of their respective subscriptions...."

[When the bill came before parliament it was lost, local MP Sir William Geary supported it, but Greenwich MP John Angerstein opposed.  George Young, MP for Tynmouth from a firm of shipbuilders was also opposed - could this be because the proponents of the bill thought they would take a lot of the steamer trade?  The Admiralty were also known to oppose a line east of Greenwich.  In 1836 the South Eastern Railway won the right from Parliament to construct a line from London to Dover via Dartford and Gravesend, but it was not until 1849 that the line reached Gravesend.

This prospectus gives an interesting insight into the amount of passenger traffic on the roads and river at the time, but it must be remembered that these are estimates.  At the time passenger fares averaged 2d per mile, so the revenue suggested that they reckoned annual road traffic between Gravesend and Greenwich to London was 4.23 million passenger miles, with a further 16.5m passenger miles for the mainly tourist river traffic to Gravesend.  Today the rail traffic from Gravesend alone amounts to over 60 million passenger miles annually.]

1835 Jan 24 General Election Kentish Gazette
Description of West Kent election at Blackheath.  Conservatives wore purple, Liberals blue.  35 coachloads of voters arrived.  Violence from Liberals intimidation from Conservatives (paper appears to support Tories)

1835 Mar 17 Burglary at Longfield South Eastern Gazette
"Burglary and Detection of a Gang of Robbers

About a month ago, a barn belonging to Mr William Bensted, a respectable farmer of Longfield Court, in the county of Kent, was feloniously entered in the night and 12 sacks of beans taken from it.  Information having been given to the Greenwich Station House, Inspector Thomas obtained a search warrant, found a part of the property in the stables of the Kentish Drovers public house in the Kent Road.  He took the ostler, John Collett into custody, and after an examination before the magistrates at Bexley, he was committed for trial on the 25th ult as a receiver of property, knowing it to be stolen.  From further information Mr Thoams received, he suspected the thieves to be three men, called William Wellington, Thomas King and John Taylor, who resided on Bexleyheath, and were well known to be notorious thieves and a pest to the neighbourhood, which they absconded from as soon as they were aware of the police being near, and the errand on which they were.  Having ventured to return, two of them, viz King and Taylor, were apprehended, and committed from Dartford on Tuesday last to take their trial for the robbery.  Wellington is still at large, but there is every hope of his being taken.  Taylor, who has but one arm, has already been transported 7 years for felony.  The fellows had horses and carts, and from the confessions of King since his committal, we are informed a wholesale system of plunder has been long carried on by these marauders.  The magistracy are much pleased with the discovery, and particularly so with the exertions and skill of Inspector Thomas and policeman Dyke, as well as with the whole local police force in general, in all cases affecting the peace and security of society."

[South Eastern Gazette 14.4.1835 reports on the trial at the Quarter Sessions.  John Collett, 31 got 14 years' transportation, John Taylor, 39, was transported for life, while Thomas King, 30 was discharged by proclamation.  Kentish Gazette 5.5.1835 reported that John Taylor and John Collett were removed from Maidstone Gaol to prison hulk Fortitude at Chatham.]

1835 Aug 04 Robbery at Meopham Kentish Gazette
Kent Assizes "Charles Day and John Holland were indicted for buglarously breaking and entering the dwelling hous eof Mr John Murley of Hoo(k) Green near Meopham, in October last.  This case excited considerable interest, in onsequence of the helpless state of Day, who was carried into court on a chair, and seemed to be i a most pitiable condition.  Both prisoners pleaded not guilty.  It appeared from the evidence of the prosecutor that on the night of the burglary he had gone to bed at 10 o'clock, having first seen that the house was fastened up.  About 12 he was awoke by hearing the flapping of a door, which being repeated he took a gun and went downstairs.  The doors and windows were all fastened  He then wen into the fowl-house, and by the light of the moon he saw 2 men.  He asked them what they were doing there.  They made no reply, but Day seized hold of the gun and tried to pull it out of his hands.  During the struggle the prisoner Holland struck the procecutor on the head with a stick; he received a severe wound, and fell to the ground, where he remained insensible.  When he recovered his senses he saw Holland carrying Day, whose clothes were on fire; the gun had gone off and wounded him in the thigh.  Prosecutor then went into his house, and got another gun and a sword, but did not see the men; he afterwards found Day in the pathway moaning, with a severe wound in his thigh.  It was stated that Holland's character had been previously good.  The jury foudn both the prisoners guilty, but recommended Holland to mercy on account of good character.  The learned judge after consulting the surgeion of the gaol concernig the wuond of Day, and learning that he would never again be able to maintain himself, passed a sentence of 3 months imprisonment.  He passed this sentence not as a punishment, for the sufferings he had already undergone had been a severe one, but to enable him to receive those attentions which his unfortunate situation required.  Holland was sentenced to 1 year's imprisonment in the House of Correction, and hard labour."

1836 Jun 25 Fire at Longfield West Kent Guardian
Fire destroys farm at Longfield.  Owner not insured and ruined by it.

1836 Sep 17 Dartford Workhouse London Dispatch
Row over contract to build Dartford Workhouse.  Paper highlights poor conditions for inmates - 20 in a room beds 2ft 3in wide with 9in between.  "Injustice and cruelty form the base-work of this infamous measure."

1837 Feb 07 Gravesend Roads Maidstone Journal
Gravesend: "The state of the roads through this down is most disgraceful.  The mud which has been scraped to the sides has been suffered to remain nearly 3 weeks, to the great inconvenience of the public."

1837 Aug 01 General Election Morning Chronicle
West Kent Election: Liberal adoption meeting of T Law Hodges at Dartford.

1837 Aug 15 General Election Kentish Weekly Post
West Kent Election Corruption: Tories said to have given £500 for 20 votes.  At Goudhurst they lied about the Liberal candidate telling a Methodist Mr Hodges was a Roman Catholic and frequented bars.

1838 Feb 17 Pigeon Shooting Kentish Mercury
Pigeon Shooting - a grand match was shot at Longfield Hill on Thursday February 15th 1838, between W Andrus and W Benstead of the same place, against Albert Dorrington and Mr Cheyne, at 14 birds each, which unfortunately, through a wrangle was not decided.  Each man shot his birds, till a baker, of the name of Mannerson, of Lowfield street, shot one of Mr Benstead's birds within the bounds, which caused the disturbance.  Another match then came off between Wm Andrus and Mr Cheyne, at 5 birds each, at which each man killed his birds.  This being a tie they shot at 5 more birds, when another tie took place, as each man shot 4 birds.  It now being dark, and too late for any more sport, the match will be finished next Thursday at Meopham.  A second match came off between W Cooper of Sutton, and H Andrus of Hartley, at 5 birds each.  Mr Andrus won by killing all his birds, and Mr Cooper lost through his bird (although shot) falling out of the bounds.  The evening was convivially finished at the Green Man, Longfield Hill.

1839 Mar 17 Pigeon Shooting Bells Life
Pigeon shooting: return match at Malling.  Mr Benstead of Hartley Court lost 4-5 to Mr Jarret of Aylesford.  Report says Mr Andruss is from Meopham.

1840 May 19 Popularity of Church Organs Maidstone Journal
"We understand that so general is becoming the use of organs in parish churches that there are at present moment not fewer than 600 being built at various organ builders in London, for that purpose."

1840 May 19 Longfield Cricket Club Maidstone Journal
Match at Stansted between Longfield/Southfleet v Stansted/Kingsdown on 22 May.

1840 Jun 23 Workhouse Chaplain South Eastern Gazette
Dartford: "On Saturday week the Board of Guardians met to elect a chaplain for the Union House, vice the Rev Thomas Fooks of Horton, who had resigned.  There were two candidates in the field, the Rev J Murray Dixon, of the Downs, and curate of Longfield, who is so popular a clergyman that not only is there not standing room in the church, but even we are told the churchyard is crowded with persons endeavouring to hear him.  The other the Rev TB Grant, vicar of Dartford, the former gentleman was nearly unanimously elected; as the Guardians  considered that the latter gentleman, having so large a cure of souls as Dartford parish, must necessarily have his time entirely occupied, as he neither kept a curate not was there any other clergyman of the Church of England to assist him in his duties.  The salary is £50 per annum."

1840 Oct 03 Local Education and New Hartley School West Kent Guardian
"Meeting of the Societies for Promoting Christian Knowledge and National Education.  This meeting, which took place at the Town Hall, Gravesend, on Thursday, the 24th instant, was announced for one o'clock, but owing to the unpropitious state of the weather it did not commence till 2pam, at which hour W M Smith esq of Camer, took the chair, supported by the Venerable the Archdeacon of Rochester, he Revs Dr Joynes, Messrs Stokes, Lonsdale (Principal of King's College), Hindle, Edmeades, Heberden, Johnston, Alcock, Kyle, Day, Tate, Irish, Allfree Otley, Dixon, and W Gladdish esq on the platform.  The meeting was opened with a prayer by the Rev J Stokes.  The chairman began the business of the day by briefly alluding to the comparative thinness of the assembly, occasioned by the state of the weather, and after expressing a hope that the interests of the society would not suffer, concluded by calling on the Rev A Tate the Secretary to read the report; from which it appeared that grants had been made from the local association in the course of the last year to assist in the erection of school houses at Meopham, and at Hartley, and that the inhabitants of Stone and Swanscombe, stimulated by this association, had raised subscriptions sufficient to build a school for the two parishes.  The total receipts for the Christian Knowledge Society for the past year ammount to £79 14s 4d, of which £39 18s 2d arose out of the sale of books.

The expendiure during the same period was £71 6s, a sum of £5 having ben ahded over tot eh aprient society for its general purposes, hte balance in hand is £3 8s 4d.  The distribution of books from depository had been as follows: 96 Bibles, 63 New Testaments, 167 Prayer Books, 2,840 books and tracts.  Total 3,166 publications.  The Rev Heberden moved, and the Rev J Day seconded the adoption of the above report.

The Venerable Archdeacon of Rochester in moving the second resolution, which was as follows 'That this meeting, convinced that no greater benefit under Divin Providence, can be furnished through the instrumentality of man to the poor and nation at large than a sound religious education, and gratefully recognises the aid which the National Society has ever received from the SPCK, approve their united operation, and recommend the objects to public support', said ....... he felt that there was such a call upon him now, and this was what induced him to come forward.  Teh question of national education was one of vital importance  It was in fact, the question of questions.  He would not go into details, but confine himself to one of two important points, first, he would endeavour to shew from the facts and figures, the connexions between the want of education and the increase of crime; and secondly,t he quantity of education that was required for the people of this country.........  In England and Wales, during the course of the last year, there were 73,612 persons put on their trial.  Of this number 8,464 were utterly without education; 12,298 were imperfectly educated, and only 300 had received what could be called a decent education.  It was an appalling fact, and one that strongly proved the necessity of a system of national education, tht 2,654 of these persons wer 14,15 or 16 years of age.  There surely must be a great want of education, since so many of that ge ould be found in the criminal list.  He would come still nearer home.  The population of all England and Wales was 15 million; that of all Kent 500,000.  Now the persons accused of crim in Kent during the last year had been 896 whereas, according to the proportion of the population, to that of the entire county, it should have been 766, a frightful proof of the effect of want of education.  Of this number 128 were under the age of 16, whereas, according to the proportion of the population, 88 should have been the number.  He considered nother further necessary, after these facts, to prove his part of his statement, and would therefore proceed.  In the second place, to point out the quantity and exent of the education required.  He would remind them that the population in England and Wales was 15 million; the proportion of these under education ought to be 4.5 million, but  in point of fact not more than 1.5 million were receiving education, and at least a half of these received no instruction except from Sunday Schools.  In this district alone, there were at least 3,000 children who ought to be receiving education, of which number only one half were receiving it, and 500 only Sunday Scholars.  Part of those who received daily instruction obtained it at private schools, or dame schools or similar places.  Of all Protestant countries he believed this to be the worst, in point of national education; for let England be considered in reference to other countries, Denmark was about the best specimen, perhaps, in Europe; its population was about 2 million, amongst whom were abut 300,000 children, of whom 278,500 were under education.  Prussia with 14 million of populatio and 2.8 million children, had 2,250,000 in her schools.  France 33 million, children 4.8 million, of whom 2 million were educated............. After these facts, he would briefly conclude by saying, that if he were to appeal to the charity of the meeting, he would have a right to do so; for no cause was dearer to God than the one relating to the salvation of the soul.  But he might go beyond the mere point of duty, and shew them that it was their best interest to promote this cause, as there could not be a more effective way to keep the country in general, and their own neighbourhood in particular, peaceable, orderly, and quiet.  The best policeman was the schoolmaster; the best gaol was the schoolhouse or the church; and if they knew the superior value of preventive to punitive measures - and if they therefore promoted the extension of schools and of churches, they would soon discover a sufficient reward for their expense and labour in the increasing tranquility and virtue of the land.  They could not stop the course of national education; he know that it had many opponents; that there were many who had actually set their faces against it, he could scarsely say why; but it seemed to hi that it would scarcely be a want of charity to suppose that they had not been really well educated themselves, and not therefore having derived any benefit from the instruction which they had themselves received, they wee the less willing to incur expense and trouble to extend it to others what they had not found a blessing in their own case.  The National Society was however progressing, notwithstanding their opposition.  It was formed in the yer 1811, and from that period up to the year 1837 its income had never reached to £11,000; indeed, in the year last mentioned, it was but £1,054, and had but 560 subscribers; but in the year 1839 its income amounted to £21,000 and it could number 12,000 staunch friends.  This resolution spoke of the connexion between the National Society and the SPCK, and he ought to observe that £5,000 of the above large increase in the income of the former of these societies was derived from a grant from the latter....  In its first formation it embraced not only its present objects, but those also of the National Society and the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts, and within 40 years from the date of its establishment it had founded upwards of 2,000 schools; since 1811 it has confined itself to the supply of books to the schools; last year it had given away £5,000 in such a manner as to occasion a saving of £14,000 to the funds of the National Society.  The meeting ought to remember that he was now pleading for those who could not assist themselves to obtain a good education without the aid of such societies as those under their consideraion.  If the poorer classes were not instructed by them, they never could afford to obtain instruction at all.  Those who heard him expected to be well and faithfully served by their inferiors, but how could they reasonably expect this if they left them untuaght in every right principle.  He concluded by saying "Let us only give the poor a really good, a religious education, and they never will be able to call us their debtors.".........  The resolution was put and carried unanimously.

The Rev Dr Joynes moved the 3rd resolution, which was as follows: 'That this society views with satisfaction the efforts that have been ade during the past year towards the establishment of schools for the children of the poor in neighbouring villages.'  The Rev Dr began by expressing his conviction, that there was no need for saying uch after the eloquent address of the Venerable Archdeacon.  The destitution spoken of was a matter of fact, which needed few illustrations, but he would employ one  There was scarcely a week in which emigrant ships did not stop in the river here on their wasy to Nova Scotia, Canada or Australia.  This was in itself a proof of the increase of population in this country; as the population inreased, the means of obaining support by labour decreased; until the poor man's only hope of bettering his condition lay in emigration.  It followed hence that emigration proved that the labouring man in this country, was in want of means to live - how much more must he be in want of means to educate his children, unless assisted by this and similar societies?  The meeting or country might reason as they would, but they must ultimately come to the conclusion, that unless the poor were educated by their country, the mass of the must remain ignorant.  He had heard that in four alone of the great manufacturing towns of the north, there were no fewer than 84,000 young persons utterly uninstructed; and he would ask what must be the ultimate lot of this great number, but that they would swell the crowds of disorderly and vicious by which our manufacturing districts were already disgraced....... Now, if we were only to think of the consequences to ourselves, we shoudl see that this was launchig on the world tens of thousands of mischievous creatures hastening on to another world, without the least restraint on their willingness to injure ourselves.  If we were only to think of their happiness we should be inclined to help them; the labouring man cannot always find employment; what judgement is he to follow when he finds himself destitute of the means of support?  If he be not educated and therefore not in the habit of exercising his mental powers, there is nothing that he is more likely to do, than to follow his animal propensities to any excess of profligacy or violence, to which they may lead him.  If we were to look to his eternal interests, we ought ot remember, that the totally uneducated poor an has not been taught to look up for that divine guidance and grace, without which we can do nothing.  He therefore lives a mere animal life, and we have no right to suppose that, after years spent in all the all the misery of sin and vice, he will a length be launched into heaven by a miracle.  The age of miracles is past, and heaven works by means and though we may say that the labouring classes have the means, that they have Bibles, churches, ministers, and other means of instruction, yet, unless they be trained to it, they have no idea of using those means  Can we patiently sit by, whilst we have all these blessings ourselves abundantly, knowing that the children of the poor are exposed to such deprivations?  Nay, our own interest demanded an effort on this point.  A single mischievous servant might destroy the repose of a family.  The very comfort of our neighbourhood might be destroyed by the ignorance of the poor.  In walking from his own house to the Town Pier, he might be exposed to many annoyances from the want of education of the populace.  A drunken man might stagger against him with an oath, a beggar might interrupt him by his impertenance, and to this and the like the whole community might be exposed, so long as the mass of the population were untaught...........   Now he would say, that those 84,000 uneducated children in the four greatest towns, of which he had spoken, were likely to be the future chartists and socialists, and if the public did not educate them on scripture principles, they would be ready to break out presently.  Every one who was really a man of humanity would rather send a poor child to school to learn what is good, than to gaol for doing what was wrong.  We did not know what might be the future destiny of our country, but whatever calamity, whatever trial, whatever chastisement it might please God to send us, we ought to try to have the labouring classes ready to comfort us by their obediance and good under such visitations; we should therefore give a long pull, a strong pull, and a pull altogether to educate the children of the poor; so shall we most effectually keep the whole country united, orderly and happy.

The Rev J P Alcock, in seconding the resolution, said that he felt he had strong reasons for supporting such a cause as this.  He was thankful for his own education; he felt it had been a blessing to himself, and he was anxious to extend the same benefit to others; he also remembered that one of the societies, whose cause he now pleaded, the National Society, had made a grant of £50 towards the erection of a building for a Sunday School in a parish of which had the charge some years since; he had felt it his duty to spend 3 hours every Sunday in that school, and he had the most convincing proofs of hte lasting benefits which it had conferred on the parish.  He had lately had occasion to visit that place, and he had not only had the pleasure of hearing that many of the young people trained in that school had turned out well, and were giving satisfaction to their employers, but the still higher gratification of receiving the blessings of many of their parents for the good which he had been the means of conveying to their children.  He would take the liberty of defining education in its true sense.  It was a training not for time only, but for eternity.  Whatever else might be taught, it was essential to impres on the mind of every child, that he had an immortal and responsible soul - that there was a God, who saw and judged every thought and action - that he had a Saviour, who died for his reconciliation - and that a future and eternal state of rewards and punishments awaited him..........  This country had within the last few years, expended £20 million in ransoming the best Indian slaves, and yet with a strange inconsistency was leaving thousands of factory children uneducated, and in all the slavery of ignorance (the £20m was the compensation paid to slave owners when slavery was abolished in 1833, equivalent to £16.5bn today).  The population of the country was daily increasing, and yet we had done little in church extension, or religious education.  Thousands have, through other means, recieved some instruction in literature, and what has been the consequence? Why, that we may find newspapers filled with abuse of everything that is venerable or holy, assailing private character and venting their filth not only against the throne, but against the majesty of God himself, read by thousands, while religious education was at a low ebb.  We had neglected to build schools, but we had built workhouses.  We had built jails, we had sent convicts by ship-loads to our penal colonies; we had neglected their spiritual interests there.  Such was not the system appointed by God himself............  Such was the testimony alike of the Scriptures and of the national church, as to the duty of Christian education; and he might adduce the testimony of their own feelings also.  They might go through a parish - they might look at the schoolhouse - they might admire the neatness of the building, and its apparent fitness for the purposes for which it was intended - but they would not be satisfied unless they were assured that a good education was given within.  The National Society exerted itself to satisfy them on that point; for it not only assisted in building and furnishing the schoolhouse, but it did what was of infinitely more importance.  It trained the teachers in the best methods of scriptural instruxtion, in order that the children, being taught to read an to understand the Word of God, and having the catechism and other formularies of our church impressed upon their minds, might go forth ready to give a reason for the hope that was in them ,might go forth thankful to thier school, to their church, to their Queen, and to their country, and might shew this thankfulness by becoming good and useful members of society.  And the blessings of such an institution often reached furhter than the school or the scholar.  He had himself conducted a Sunday School in one parish for more than 5 years; and in many instances he had found the parents had been instructed by their own children.  Some might feel inclined to ask what they could do much by their subscriptions, and still more by inviting their friends and neighbours to aid a society which extended such benefits to the rising generation.  The resolution being then put, was carried unanimously.

The Rev A Tate, in moving the 4th resolution, 'That the SPCK, from the care which it has taken of the wants of the people, deserves universal support', said he would simply allude to the operations, origin, and nature of that Society.  It was originally and necessarily a School Society; for in distributing Bibles, prayer books and other religious publications it had found the necessity of first teaching many of the poor to read.  It accordingly founded several schools in the metropolis, many of which continue to the present day......  About 10 years ago there had been a number of incendiary fires in this part of the country; and this, he maintained, was a proof of the ignorance of the peasantry, on one point in particular, on the nature of fire insurances, for, thad they understood these, they would have been awre that they were not, by their lawless proceedings, inflicting the slightest injury on the farmers, whom they so foolishly thought their enemies but a heavy one on a mercentile body with which they could never come into contact, they would have abstained from such a method of shewing their displeasure.  (newspaper says they have run out of space to report further)"

1840 Oct 27 Fire at Ash Kentish Gazette
"Incendiarism: On Tuesday morning last, between the hours of 3 and 4, a destructive fire broke out on the farming establishment, belonging to Mr William Andrews, situate in the village of Ash, about 7 miles from Gravesend.  The flames were observed by a mounted patrol raging in the bar (a large wooden building, 2 stories high and 70 fee in length) and before there was time to give an alarm, the fire burst forth and illuminated the village.  A large body of labourers wre on teh spot, and means were adopted to extinguish the flames, but without success.  They raged with great violence for nearly an hour, and were not suppressed until the barn was reduced to ruins, and also several outbuildings the adjoined.  About three-quarters of an hour after the outbreak, the Kent engines from Gravesend arrived, and had it not been for the praiseworthy exertions of the people of the village in working them, the entire farm would have been destroyed.  An investigation has taken place, for the purpose of inquiring into the origin of the fire, and it was clearly proved that it was the act of an incendiary."

[Report from Dover Express 24.10.1840] "Incendiary fire near Gravesend.

On Tuesday morning last, a destructive fire broke out on the farm of Mr Andrews, situate in the village of Ash, about 7 miles from Gravesend.  An investigation has taken place for the purpose of inquiring as to the origin of the fire, and it was clearly proved that it was the act of an incendiary.  the property is not insured.  The loss is reported to be £500."

1840 Dec 15 Horse Theft at Hartley Court Maidstone Journal
"Stolen from the stable of Mr William Bensted at Hartley Court, near Meopham Kent on Saturday night, the 12th or early on Sunday morning the 13th December 1840.  A black chaise mare, about 16 hands high, broken winded, with saddle marks and switch tail, and small star in the forehead, about 13 or 14 years old, the property of Mr John Jordan, auctioneer, Milton next Sittingbourne.  A reward of £5 will be paid on conviction of the offender or offenders by applying to Mr John Jordan, Milton".

1841 Apr 10 Cleared of Theft at Hartley West Kent Guardian
"Thomas Beven and John Day were charged with stealing 2 trusses of hay, the property of William Benstead at Hartley.  Mr Rose conducted the prosecution for Mr Bodkin, and Mr Espinass for the prisoners.  James Richardson, servant to the prosecutor, deposed that on the night of the 27th of March, his master had 18 trusses of hay in the stable, and on Sunday morning the 28th he went to the stable and found only 16 trusses.  Mr Benstead, the prosecutor, said from information received, he proceeded on the morning of the 28th towards Foxberry Wood, where he traced the hay stolen from his stable, from thence to a field into the high road to Hartley Bottom, where the prisoner Bevan keeps a public house, and in the prisoner's barn found the 2 trusses of hay which he had lost.  The prisoner Bevan said he knew o how it came there.  The Chairman said there was nothing against Day, and therefore ordered his discharge; and the jury acquitted Bevan."

[The Quarter Sessions tried middling crimes between the Petty Sessions and the Assizes.  They were overseen by magistrates with a jury and met at the 4 quarter days of the year.  Quarter Sessions and the Assizes were replaced by Crown Courts in 1972.  The report gives us the historically correct pronounciation of Foxborough Wood and mentions the former King's Arms pub in Hartley Bottom Road, now Hartley Bottom Farm.]

1841 Jul 13 Missing Woman Maidstone Journal
"Hartley - this retired village has been in a state of excitement some days past, in consequence of the mysterious disappearence of a woman named Ann Day.  Several letters have been received by her friends stating that she intended to commit suicide, rejected by her lover; they have made strict search in the vicinity for the woman, but have not yet succeeded in discovering her, her friends are in great alarm."

[No Ann Day of the right age in the 1841 census, so possibly this refers to the other Hartley in Kent.  However Days are a well known family in the parish at the time and the news item is with others on nearby Eynsford and Farningham, and the other Hartley was on the turnpike road, so wouldn't be called 'retired'.]

1841 Aug 07 Fears of Grave Robbing West Kent Guardian
"Hartley - Singular Circumstance - Some years ago, a lady who died at this place was buried at Offham in this county; a few days since the coffin plate belonging to the deceased was found in a field at Darenth, the inscription being very legible.  This affair has caused much sensation among the friends of the deceased, who intend to have the grave opened to see if the remains are there; for it is supposed the body was disinterred by resurrectionists.

[Resurrectionist is another term for grave robber.  Fortunately the local versions of Burke and Hare were not responsible.  The same paper of 21 August 1841 reported "A paragraph recently appeered in the papers respecting a coffin plate where the body had been interred.  The grave has since been opened and the coffin and plate undisturbed, so that there must have been two plates made, one of which most probably was thrown away, and was found as desribed."]

1841 Nov 30 Lost Dog South Eastern Gazette
"Gone astray on the 6th September 1841: A black and white pointer dog.  Whoever has lost the same may obtain it by applying to Mr William Treadwell, at the Black Lion, Hartley, on paying the expenses involved."

1841 Dec 28 Sale at West Yoke Farm Maidstone Journal
"Sale by Auction - Ash near Hartley, Kent.  Mr Eversfied of Gravesend has received instructions to sell by auction.  All the furniture, live and dead stock, and effects of the late Mr Wm Andrus sen, on the premises, West Yoke Farm, Ash, by order of the executors, comprising capital beds, bedsteads, and mattresses, quantity of excellent linen and books, map of Kent, valuable old china, cut glass, and earthenware, chimney glasses, bureau and bookcase, chests of drawers, tables, chairs, carpets, sofa, 8 day clocks, fowling pieces, good casks, water butts and pickling tubs, barometer, blankets and counterpanes, 18, 22 and 25 gallon coppers and furnaces, ranges and stoves, a churn and mangle, tea urns and tea acts, metal skillets, copper pans, iron pots, knives and forks, 2 capital cows, a calf, 2 fat hogs, store pigs and poultry, saddles, bridles and harness, a few good hops, and a number of other useful articles, on Tuesday Jan 4, 1842.

May be viewed on Monday next; sale on Tuesday, punctually at half past ten o'clock on account of the great number of lots and shortness of days.

Catalogues at the auctioneer's office, 36 New Road Gravesend....."

1842 Aug 16 Hartley Primary School South Eastern Gazette
"The anniversary of the Gravesend Church Union, in aid of the Church building, additional curates, national school, propagation of the Gospel, and Christian Knowledge Societies, was held on Wednesday last, when divine service was performed in Gravesend Church, and a sermon preached by the Rev Dr Hawkins, Provost of Oriel College, Oxford, after which the sum of £21 0s 6d was collected.  The annual public meeting was held in the Town Hall in the evening of the same day, at which the Venerable the Archdeacon of Rochester presided..... [list of other names, clergy and laity]...  The report, read by the secretary, stated that 3 national schools had been established in the parishes of Stone, Hartley and Meopham, towards the erection of which grants had been made from the Church Union to teh amount of £113, and that these schools were now in full operation.  The additional sum of £11 10s was collected after the meeting."

1842 Oct 04 Sale at Longfield Court Farm Maidstone Journal
"Valuable live and dead farming stock, a stack of excellent clover hay, computed at 20 loads, a stack of ditto sainfoin, computed at 16 loads and other effects to be sold by auction by G Nandy and Son on Thursday, October 6th, 1842 at 1 o'clock, on the premises, Longfield Court Farm, near Hartley, Kent (by order of the proprietor Mr W Bensted, leaving the farm).  Comprising 10 very powerful young and active draught horses, 12 handsom 3 years old Welsh heiffers, 2 strong waggons complete, 4 good dung carts, turnrise and strike ploughs, chain, quoiler and drill harness, wood land roller, corn bins, weights and scales, quantity of folding stakes, ladders etc etc.  A stack of very excellent clover hay, and ditto of sainfoin...."

1842 Oct 18 Athletics at Meopham South Eastern Gazette
"A foot race took place on Tuesday at Hook Green, about 4 miles from Gravesend, towards Meopham, between Thomas Everest of Northfleet, and Smith, known in the sporting circle as the Regent Street Pet, for £10 aside.  The distance was 100 yards.  The men appeared on the ground at 2 o'clock.  The betting was 5 to 3 on Smith.  Everest appeared anything but in good condition.  About 3 o'clock, after several false starts, the men went off; Everest leading, but he soon dropped into the stern chase.  Smith, at the winning post, was 5 yards ahead of his competitor, and not at all distressed.  The distance was done in 11 seconds."

[The time was very impressive, the first official world record for the distance was 10.5 seconds in 1870, although of course the length of the cuorse and timings were probably a bit inexact in those days.]

1843 Oct 17 Tithes at Hartley Kentish Gazette
"Tithe Commission Notice: The Tithe Commissioners for England and Wales hereby give notice that on the 1st day of November, 1843, they will proceed, either by themselves or by an Assistant Commissioner, to ascertain and award the total sum to be paid by way of rentcharge instead of the tithes of the parish of Hartley, in the county of Kent, according to the provisions of the Act for the Commutation of Tithes in England and Wales; and that the first meeting for this purpose will be holden at the Lion Inn, Farningham, in the said county at 11 o'clock in the forenoon of the day above mentioned, when all persons interested are desired to attend.  Dated this 7th day of October 1843.  By order of the Board, J E Hovenden, secretary, Tithe Commission Office."

[Probably not expected to be a very long meeting, as they have a similar meeting for Horton Kirby at 2pm at the same time and place]

1844 Jan 30 Pro-Corn Law Meeting Maidstone Journal
"West Kent Anti-league Movement - Meeting at Maidstone

On Thursday last on eof the most numerous and influential assemblages of agriculturists we ever saw in this town, took place at the Town Hall, in order to form an Agricultural Portection Association for West Kent.  The meeting which originated entirely with the tenant farmers of the immediate neighbourhood, was composed of persons of various political sentiments, but all having one common bond of union, superior to any mere party views or objects - Proteection to our native agriculture.  Several preliminary meetings had been held by the tenant farmers, who at last resolved to hold a public meeting for the above mentioned object, and to call upon the landlords to come forward and assist them in doing battle against the general enemy.  The present meeting showed with what alacrity the call had been responded to, and proved that however proper it may be for tenants firs 'to take up arms agains the sea of troubles' with which the League threaten them, the landlords will not suffer them to go into the fray single-handed..... [List of leading people present].... //  The Anti-Corn League was represented on the occasion by a trio of 'worthies' viz Mr Will Short, a character famed in the electioneering annals of the town, Mr 'Gammon' costermonger, who renders himself notorious by driving about the town with a green ribbon in his hat at elections, indicating that he had not finally determined on which side to vote, but requires a little more 'persuasion', and finally Mr Joe Durrant, an itinerant penny pamphlet dealer, bill sticker etc - otherwise known as the 'castigator of the whigs.'  These three did their best occasionally to disturb the meeting, by roaring to the top of their 'most sweet voices', but their zealous exerations in the cause of free trade only served to augment the force of the day's proceedings by the contrast it afforded to the numbers, unity and zel of the agriculturalists present.

[Lengthy reports of various speeches.  The two below are of local interest]

W Masters Smith esq of Camer, had much pleasure in seconding the motion.  If ever there was a time when farmers ought to be unite, and when there was a body to be opposed, the time was the present, and the body was that which sought to aggrandise itself at the expense of the agricultural community (cheers).  He, however, could not regret that it had taken so extreme a course - a course whch had aroused the farmers from their too common and too blameable apathy and indifference, thus to come forward, as they had done on the present occasion (cheers).  He would not detain them by any lengthened remarks, as all the objections which could be urged against their proceedings had been most satisfactorily answered, adn the objects they had in view had been most ably stated.  He trusted the movement would not end there, but that if, at any future time, hireling agitators, traders in deceit, came to disturb their county, the farmers would be found ready to meet them, and like an undecided jury, take and discharge them at the confines of the county (loud cheering)

Joseph Berens esq, before the motion was put begged permission to make one or two observations.  He had no knowledge of the meeting till the latter end of the week, and knowing the distance of his part of the county, and the inconvenience to many persons of travelling to the meeting, he had felt it his duty to give every assistance to his brother farmers in his own neighbourhood.  He therefore early on Saturday drew up a paper which contained a declaration, such as he thought would embody the sentiments of every farmer hostile to the league, and having sent it to Dartford market, in scarsely more than an hour it was signed by more than 70 persons, who might fairly be considered as being present at the meeting by him, their agent.  (Mr Berens then read the following declaration).

'We the undersigned, hereby declare our firm determination to oppose by every means in our power the principles and the proceedings of the Anti-Corn Law League, tending directly to the ruin of the farmer and the destruction of the labourer.  We look to the Houses of Parliament to check so mischievous a conspiracy, and to maintain those laws which their wisdom has established.  We claim for agriculture the protection which is afforded to the manufacturer.  We claim it as due to the vast capital laid out upon our farms, by which the nation is fed independent of foreign states, over whose laws we could have no control.  We claim it as the sole support of the labouring classes in health, and as the principal ratepayers to relieve the poor in their distress.  We claim it as the only means of affording to the farmer, that degree of prosperity, which can ensure to the manufacturer the certain and steady profit of a home market.  We rely upon the justice and upon the wisdom of Parliament, to uphold the agricultural interest as that upon which our existence as a great nation depends, and to check the progress of a combination whose proceedings are so adverse to the spirit of the constitution, and we believe so contrary to law.  We assure the meeting of our zealous cooperation in all those measure which they may deem expedient for the general good.  (Signatories included Joseph Berens, Kevington, William Bensted, Hartley; W Hodsoll, South Ash; William Cooper jun, Fawkham; James Armstrong, Southfleet; William Durling, Ash; signatories were from Ash 2, Bexley 6, Chelsfield 1, Chislehurst 1, Crayford 1, Cudham 1, Darenth 3, Dartford 4, Erith 6, Fawkham 1, Hartley 1, Horton Kirby 3, Kevington 1, Orpington 1, Ruxley 2, St Mary Cray 10, St Paul's Cray 1, Shoreham 2, Shorne 3, Southfleet 2, Stone 4, Sutton at Hone 3, Swanscombe 1, West Kingsdown 1, West Wickham 1, Wilmington 3)

[The repeal of the Corn Laws in 1846 was one of those pivotal moments in British history, by abolishing tariffs on imported corn the country decided that it was a mainly industrial not an agricultural society.  Naturally as Kent was then a mainly agricultural county, it favoured the law as it was, although it is interesting to note the relatively few signatures from Dartford town in Mr Berens's petition.  In the end, in spite of repeal, corn prices remained relatively high until large scale imports from North America became possible in the 1870s.  Mr Berens was right in one point, that ultimately it left Britain dependent on large scale food imports, that endangered the country in both world wars.  For more, see Wikipedia Article on the Repeal of the Corn Laws.  Mr Berens's petition, taken on a market day at Dartford is very interesting for showing the sphere of influence of the town.  To the east that is much the same as today, extending to Ash, West Kingdown, Southfleet and Shoreham, but it has lost much influence to the west, to the emerging centres of Bromley and Bexleyheath.]

1845 Apr 29 Taking Turnips Maidstone Journal
"William Treadwell pleaded guilty to the charge of damaging with intent to steal about 1 bushel of turnip tops, value 2 shillings, the property of James Russell esq, at Fawkham, and was fined 5? shillings and expenses, in all £1 3s, which was paid."

1845 Sep 16 Obituary of Mrs Bensted South Eastern Gazette
Family Notices - deaths: "On the 11th inst, at Hartley Cottage [Now called Hartley House, Ash Road], Mrs Bensted, in the 86th year of her age.  Her loss will be long and sincerely lamented by her family and a large circle of friends, and by the poorer clases, who have been bereaved of a kind and generous benefactress."

1846 Dec 05 Lament for Old Dartford Kentish Independent
"Some 40 years ago, when steam boats and railroads were wrapped up in the swaddling clothes of infancy, or we should rather say before those mighty gods were born, upwards of 70 stage coaches rattled daily through this town.  The journey to London was then something like a journey, not a mere step across the way as it is now, but a sensible worth talking about 12 hours' trip; and folks, considering the perils they might encounter by the road, used to make their last wills and testaments previous to starting.  O! those wer jolly, palmy, times indeed; life, activity, and universal content, spread a halo of happiness over the place, and trade was joyously brisk in these good old times, and every shop keeper looked sleek and self satisfied.  In fact, tradition does hint that Dartford then fell very little short of paradise in guilelessness and felicity.  There were then no petty jealousies, no party bickerings, no religious squabblings or hypocritical jobbings, to disturb the serenity or disgrace the character of the pious but enterprising inhabitants.  In intellectuality, too, these ancestral Dartfordians were vigorous and original.  There was a lustre about all they did, and its brilliancy was felt and acknowledged for many miles around.  Dartford was, in those blessed bygone days, the focus of Kentish refinement, the very pith and marrow of commercial prosperity.  But alas! alas! what is it in 1846? Our bosom heaves bursting sighs when we think of the change.  Our very pen, steel though it be, throbs with anguish as it alludes to the oppressive truth.  Dartford, as well as Scotland, certainly 'stands where it did,' but could it sit for its picture now, the portrait would differ as much from the one slightly sketched above, as an incarnation of deformity would from an embodiement of beauty.  Poor afflicted spot, what is it now but a vast sarcophagus peopled with animated corpses?  The 70 coaches melted down in the fire of adversity, have left a residuum of one melancholy vehicle, whose diurnal rumble is as cheerful as the heavy roll of the dead cart during the plague.  An ad libitum omnibus of two to be sure there is, running at intervals to the river Thames and back, but that only when the horses and driver want a little recreation.  The omnibuses are an innovation, and the people havve not yet learnt to relish it, for intellect here cam to a halt some years since, and it has not yet been prevailed upon to 'quick march' with the onward movement of the age.  The strong proof of this is the late lamented death of the Mechanics' Institution, cut off in its prime by a decline - a wasting away of all its members - though we imaging the proper verdict  would be 'died of wilful starvation.'  However, peace to its ashes!  We fear not those of a phoenix.  Another innovation marking the degeneracy of this town - tomb we mean - is the introduction of policemen; these we suppose are the blue devils of the supulchre, or perhaps the blow flies who invariably fatten on corruption.  The goodly Methodists too, how they are changed!  Once humble, modest, and unpretending, well contented to worship in an obscure chapel in a dirty lane, they now have erected in a come-and-stare-at-me-well position an affair - a something that looks like the offspring of a diseased cathedral brought to bed before its time, and delivered by a clumsy midwife.  The Church, venerable old edifice, has not even escaped the ravages of interfering folly; some perturbed spirits have plastered a patchwork porch over a side door, and now the building looks like a great donkey with one ear, and that not his own.  Naughty people say it is entirely the present vicar's taste, but we won't believe it.  Nor will we believe that he gave orders to strip the ivy from teh external wall of his church - he never would have been such a barbarian as that.  Whoever did it, though, deserves to be skinned alive on a frosty day.  And now, Dartfordians, we wish you adieu for the present - au revoir."

[I really couldn't make up my mind whether they are being serious or ironic, however a letter in reply to the paper on 26 December 1846 certainly assumed they were being serious.]

1847 Jan 23 Local News in Brief Kentish Independent
Dartford Magistrates:

Mary Lines, landlady of a public house at Longfield, appeared to answer the complaint of Emma Wharton, daughter of ____ Wharton, beer house keeper of the same place.  Emma Wharton, being sworn, deposed: On Christmas Day last a few minutes past 11 o'clock in the morning, I heard a noise in our house, and went out of the washhouse where I was, and saw Mrs Lines and my mother in the passage, scuffling.  I went to assist my mother, whose neck Mrs Lines had made bleed.  I took hold of my mother's arms and Mrs Lines hit me twice in the face and pulled my nose.  She also made my mouth bleed besides tearing my cap off with some of my hair.  The witness exhibited the cap, which bore the usual marks of a woman's combat.  By Mr Russell: My father keeps a beer shop.  Mr Lines keeps a public house.  Our front door was shut.  Mrs Lines came in the backdoor, which was open.  There is a path from the road to the back door.  There were some persons in the tap room.  I hit Mrs Lines twice.  We had a struggle.  I did not see a spade used.  Mary Wharton, the mother of the last witness, deposed: On Christmas Day, a little after 11, Mrs Lines cem to our back door and wanted to see who was in the tap room.  She pushed herself in and my husband told her to go out, but she said she would not.  He took hold of her to put her out, when she flew at him, and I went to take his part.  She began to hit me as well, and 'tore my neck open'.  My daughter came to assist me, when Mrs Lines 'pushed into her' and 'took hold of her nose and made her teeth bleed'.  By Mr Russell: I did not see my daughter hit Mrs Lines first.  She tore my neck and made it bleed with her finger nails.  Another witness corroborated the above, adn added, after Mrs Lines had hit Emma Wharton, he saw Mrs Wharton take up a shovel and he took it away from her, and helped to get Mrs Lines out of the house - Fined 20 shillings and costs 14 shillings.

Edmund Longhurst was charged with poaching on the lands of H Beaumont, at Hartley.  Edwin Cooper deposed: I am keeper to Mr Beaumont.  On Sunday, the 3rd instant, I went with my brother to watch 3 wires I had found on the 2nd; about 8 o'clock defendant came to one of them, he went up to it and took hold of the string and put it down directly and went awy; there is no footpath near.  By Longhurst: I did not see you set it nor take it up, you touched the string and went away directly.  Fined 10 shillings and costs, which defendant said he could not pay, as he was out of work - Committed to Maidstone for one month."

[No landowner at Hartley called H Beaumont at the time; the paper says the defendant is Edmund but the census would suggest that he was really Edward Longhurst]

1847 Mar 09 Vandalism at Fawkham Maidstone Journal
"Fawkham - A short time since C R Smith esq, brought before the members of the British Archaeological Association, at their public meeting in Sackville Street, an act of vandalism, which he had been informed had been perpetrated at Fawkham, in this county during the past winter.  A J Dunkin esq followed upon the same subject, and observed that it was too true the ruins of the ancient manor house, an engraving of which would be found in Thorpe's Custumale Roffense, had been finally pulled down during the winter of 1846-7, by a man named John Longhurst, who rented the field in which they stood of the Selbys of the Mote, Ightham, and it had been stated without the knowledge and consequently the permission of the owner.  The flints and stones of whih it had been composed were sold at the rate of 9d per load to Richard Austen of Greenhithe, to ment the Dover road between Ingress Park Swanscombe and Galley Hall, in the same parish.  2 or 3 silver coins of the Edwards had been met with, which had been sent to London for sale.  It was much to be regretted tha the clergyman of the parish had not taken some steps to preserve the ruins, which were exceedingly picturesque.  But unfortunately there was an utilitarian spirit in the parish which had actually regarded the vandal act as exceedingly meritorious, from the sale of the materials having given bread and cheese to a man and family.  He hoped as here were some fine specimens of painted glass still in the windows of the church, a more conservative feeling would be created for these memorials of piety of our medieval ancestors.  Mr Dunkin thenn promised to obtain further particulars to lay before the association at an early period, and it was finally resolved that a party of archaeologists should be formed to visit the church and examine the glass and edifice.  One of the brasses in the chancel of the church was inscribed in Roman Capitals -

"Here lyeth interred Richard Meredyth
Esquire clerk of the Catrye, unto Queen
Elizabeth and unto King James, who de-
eased the 5th of June 1607 leaving behind
him Elizabeth his wife, daughter of Hum-
phrey Michell esquire adn 4 sons
Humfrey, Richard, Edmond & John' "

[This refers to the remains of the old manor house of Fawkham, which was in the field by the church.]

1847 Mar 16 Vandalism at Fawkham - Rector Speaks Maidstone Journal
"Sirs, A paragraph having appeared in your last journal respecting the destruction of a small ruin in the parish of Fawkham, and regretting that the clergyman of the parish had not taken some steps to preserve it.  I beg to state, as rector of Fawkham, that not being now resident there, I was not at all aware that such a proceeding was even contemplated, and was much surprised and annoyed, on passing the spot accidently, to find the work of destruction was nearly completed.  I immediately called on the person occupying teh land, but was told that it was done with the full knowledge and consent of the proprietor.  I felt therefore that I had no further right to interfere, though much regretting that such permission should have been given.

I beg to add taht I have been always intereset in the preservation of the ruin, and when it came to my knowledge some few years ago, that a similar proceeding was contemplated by the father of the present tenant, I wrote to Mr Selby of Ightham Mote, then the proprietor, and succeeded in rescuing it from destruction; and had I been aware of the intended destruction I should certainly have taken the liberty of interceding with the present proprietor.

I beg to assure the members of the British Archaeological Association that I fully participate in their praiseworthy anxiety for the preservation of any memorials of the piety of our ancestors which still exist i the parish.

I am, sir, your obedient servant, P Salwey, Ash Rectory."

1847 Mar 30 Vandalism at Fawkham - Owner Speaks Maidstone Journal
"Sir, Since my arrival at this place on Tuesday last from my residence in Northumberland, my attention has been directed to a letter which appeared in the Maidstone Journal of the 16th ultimo, from the Rev P Salwey, Rector of the parish of Fawkham, relative to the destruction of an ancient ruin within the precincts of that parish, by the occupier of he ground upon which it stood.  In that connectio Mr Salwey states that on passing the spot accidentally, he found the work of destruction nearly completed, and upon calling upon the occupier of the land was informed by him that it was done with the full knowledge and consent of the proprietor.

Now being the proprietor of the piece of ground in question and anxious to free myself fro the odium to which my consent to such an act of vandalism would justly subject me, I beg to inform the public and more especially the antiquarian and archaeologist through the medium of your journal, that the tenant in making such an assertion offered a most deliberate and impudent falsehood.  No permission indeed could have been granted, as no application for such a purpose has ever been made by the tenant since I came into possession of the property.

Noone, I assure you, can more sincerly regret the destruction of so venerable a relic than myself, and it was with a feeling of the deepest indignation I heard of the lawless and unjustifiable conduct of this person on my arrival from the north.  I have also greatly to regret that Mr Salwey had not been [....] made aware of the intended demolition of these interesting remains, [.....] communication from him, either addressed to myself, or my daughter Mrs [.....] residing at Ightham Mote would have sufficed to prevent this lawless [.......] I may be allowed to add as a further excuse for the ignorance in which I remained as to the [......] of the latter, that the piece of ground upon which the ruin stood and rented by him, is the only property I possess in the parish of Fawkham, and that it is at a distance of 12 or 14 miles from Ightham Mote.......

I am sir, your obedient servant, PJ Selby, Ightham Mote"

1847 Jun 08 Fire at Fawkham Maidstone Journal
"About 12 o'clock on the night of Saturday last an alarming and extensive fire occurred at Fawkham Bottom, the house of Mr Bristow, grocer etc, who had not long retired to rest before he was awoke by the cry of fire, at which time it was raging so fast that he had to make his escape by an upper window and was caught by some men below or he would no doubt have been injured by falling into the road.  The house and shop with a quantity of goods were consumed, and the origin of the fire has not yet been ascertained."

Another report is in the South Eastern Gazette of 8.6.1847:

"Destructive Fire - On Saturday night, the 20th ult, at about 11 o'clock, a fire broke out in the house of Mr Bristow, grocer etc at Fawkham.  The engine from Dartford was sent for, but there not being any water near it was entirely useless, and the whol of the premises were destroyed.  Mr Bristow was insured.

On Monday, the 31st, William Colyer was brought before the Rev G C Renouard, at Swanscombe, by Thomas Young, constable of Fawkham, charged with stealing 4 pairs of boots from the shop of Mr Bristow, whilst on fire.  William A Webster stated he was an assistant to Mr Bristow, that he saw the prisoner Colyer leaving Mr Bristow's premises with the boots in his possession, and he gave them into custody of Young, the constable - Committed for trial."

1847 Jun 08 Local News in Brief South Eastern Gazette
(1) East Surrey Agricultural Show held at Duppas Hill, Croydon.  "A piece of plate, value 5 guineas, to the owner of the best cart stallion - Mr W Treadwell of Hartley, Kent."

(2) Cross Channel Traffic: In the week ending 5 June, Folkestone saw 441 passengers, 5 carriages and 5 horses arrive and 491 passengers, 3 carriages and 4 horses depart for the continent.

[Paper of 27.2.1849 said in the week ending 24.2.1849 Folkestone had 269 passengers from and 201 going to Boulogne, and 69 passengers from and 15 going to Calais.  The Boulogne boat also brought 32 boxes of continental mail]

1847 Jul 03 Women's Cricket Kentish Independent
"Gravesend - Novel Cricket Match - On Tuesday last, the first cricket match between females it was ever our lot to witness, came off in the cricket field at the Bat and Ball, and attracted numerous spectators.  The ladies were selected one side from Longfield, Hartley and Meopham, the other from Singlewell.  The game was called cricket, but was really a modification, the wickets about 4 feet high, had a round piece of board at the top, a foot or more in diameter, which it was necessary for the ball to strike to bowl a player out.  The bats were battledores, and the ball a light one.  The women batted with great spirit and energy, and the fielding was as may be imagined capital fun.  The match was not played out, but at a late hour when the wickets were drawn, the Shinglewell dames had the advantage in the first innings, by some 20 runs.  A band was on the ground and some dances on the grass were got up in the course of the afternoon.  In the evening the cricketers and their friends took tea together, and a day of exuberant fun, merriment, and good humour, wound up with a dance in the pavilion, which was kept up with great spirit."

[There is only one reference I know, of Hartley having a men's cricket team earlier than this.  Alas no names of the players are given.  The article refers to the height of the stumps in this match being 48 inches, under the 1829 laws of the game, the normal height would be 27 inches.  1848 Jan 11 Petition against Hop Duty Kentish Gazette
"To the hop growers of the county of kent.  We the undersigned hop growers, respectfully request the attendance of the hop growers generally of hte county of Kent, at the Star Inn, Maidstone, on Thursday January 13th 1848, to consider the propriety of petitioning Parliament for the repeal of excise duty on home grown hops."

(25 signatures, including W Bensted - Hartley, W W & J Armstrong - Southfleet, Edward Collier - Southfleet)

[The question of hop duty came up regularly in Parliament at this time.  It was finally abolished in 1862.]

1848 May 14 Pigeon Shooting Bells Life
"At Mr Hayes' King's Arms, Hartley Bottom, Kent on Tuesday lat, Mr Ward beat Mr Slanter, at 5 pigeons each for £5, killing all.  Mr Tilden bat Mr Waters at 5 each for £2, killing 4.  Mr Hassell beat 5 others at 5 each, 10s each.  Mr Smith beat Mr Walters at 5 each fo £2.  Other matches were shot.  Morris of the Old Kent Road supplied the birds."

[Live pigeon shooting for sport was outlawed in 1921.  The King's Arms pub has since become Hartley Bottom Farm.]

1848 Jul 01 Hartley Cricket Club West Kent Guardian
"Sutton at Hone - On Thursday last a match of Cricket was played in the field adjoining Court Lodge, Homestead, between 11 of Hartley and 11 of Sutton, which after some exceedingly good play on either side terminated in the very uncommon circumstance of each side having scored the same number of runs, viz 88; consequently the game was decided by the first innings.  Hartley scored 54 and 34; Sutton 28 and 60."

1848 Aug 12 Kent Opthalmic Hospital, Maidstone Dover Telegraph
AGM for subscribers reported 1,403 outpatients between 1.5.1846 and 31.5.1848,  Inpatients first taken 13.11.1847 and since then to 31.5.1848, they have received 47 including 1 from Fawkham.

1849 Jan 09 Theft at Longfield South Eastern Gazette
West Kent Quarter Sessions: "Thomas Morgan 15, pleaded guilty to a charge of stealing one smock frock, value 2 shillings, the property of James Martin, at Longfield - 6 weeks' hard labour and once whipped."

1849 Nov 02 Cholera at Hartley Daily News
The Cholera - England and Wales: Record of deaths from cholera and diarrhoea reported to the General Board of Health the 1st of November 1849:

Superintendent Registrar's District
Dartford (Hartley) - Cholera 1

Total (Great Britain) - Cholera 56, Diarrhoea 18.

[Looking at the Burial register, the case was probably William Longhurst, aged 45, who was buried 3 November 1845.  The previous report had been 22 October 1849.]

1849 Dec 25 Bankruptcy Maidstone Journal
Notice of Petition of Bankruptcy against William Farrant formerly of Fawkham, farmer and sub-surveyor of roads, now of [West] Kingsdown, wood dealer and sub-surveyor of roads.

© Content P Mayer 2000-2018.  Created with WebSite X5
Back to content