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» REVISION COURTS. I CHESTER. WEDNESDAY. OCCUPIERS OF ALMSHOUSES HAVE VOTES ALLO"WEX>. Mr. LOVETT, in re-opening the case anent the New Crane-street almshouses, said the Duke of Westminster was under no obligation whatever in regard to these houses, nor was he called upon by will or otherwise to give the tenants 5s. per week, which had been done by himself and his father before him out of pure bevevo- lence to deserving people. The Duke looked upon them not as almsmen but as ordinary tenants, and if he thought fit he could give more or less money, or even withdraw it. Furthermore, he could put the tenants upon rent. Several of the men themselves were then examined.—Francis Hitchen said he was 82 years of age, and was the oldest tenant at present living in the almshouses. He received 5s. a week.-John Jeffrey, 76 years old, had been bellman of Chester for 24 years, and was retained now, although he did his duty by deputy. —Wm. Jones earned a little money at tailoring before he became an occupant. His age was 78.-Richard Boulton, formerly a labourer in the employment of the Corporation, was 76 years of age, and had been in the almshous two years. —Richard Aspey, a freeman, and Wm. Hand, formerly a fisherman, and who at present occasionally helped his relations in that way, also gave evidence.-John Williams said he was 81 years of age and was formerly caretaker of the Water Tower.—Joseph Ledsham stated he was a freeman of the city and of the company, and he formerly resided at Glynne-street, Saltney, where he had both a parliamentary and municipal vote. Mr. Egerton Gilbert, representing the Duke of Westminster, said they had made all enquiries, and so far as was known there was no deed in relation to these almshouses. The places were instituted probably by the first Marquis. They had books back to 1835, when the occupants received 2s. 6d. a week which the present Duke increased to 5s. Formerly, up to seven or eight years ago, it was the invariable rule to appoint freemen, but there became what he might call a scarcity of eligible freemen, and the Duke therefore allowed them to nominate others than freemen. It had also been the practice only to have people who had some little means of their own. There were eleven houses, and the duke paid the rates. Mr. BURKE WOOD, in giving his ruling, said: The question was whether the facts of the case shewed such a state of dependence as would mean the disqualification of these men. By the Reform Act of 1832 it was enacted that no person should be entitled to be registered who should within twelve calendar months before the previous July, have received parochial relief or other alms. The question was whether these alms were such as would mean disqualifica- tion. He had read every decision, he thought, that had been given in registration cases in regard to the receipt of alms, but had failed to find anyone that touched a private charity suchras the one described by Mr. Gilbert. It appea ed to him, as it did to Mr. Churton, that the case nearest this was that of the Greenwich and Chelsea pensioners. These were men that had served their country. They had borne good characters, and they received quarters, rations, and a dole. They were selected as a sort of recognition of the services they had rendered to their State, and none of them had been dis- qualified. It did not appear to him there was a great deal of difference between the cases that had been before them and that of the pensioners. In this case they had taken people of some little means, and it was quite clear it was a spontaneous act on the part of the Duke. These men lie thought were taken out of the category the case of Harrison v. Carter. The fact of dis- qualifying these men would be a serious thing. There must be thousands of people in England who, as old servants-old superannuated gardeners, coachmen, labourers, &c.-were allowed by their masters to live rent free, and have say a few shillings a week to help them out. Mr. SELLARS That would not govern this case. Mr. WOOD asked why not. These men were like the Chelsea pensioners, they included a bellman, fisherman, tailor, &c., and they had properly called on the Duke for their appoint- ment. To disfranchise them would mean dis- franchising many throughout the land. These men had not been on the list before, and the objection came to them for; the first time. That was explained by the fact that the houses had just been rated for the first time, and there- fore the names of the tenants had been put by the overseer on the list. Five of the men were freemen. In the case of Cohen against the Town Clerk of Kingston-upon-Hull, Justice Hawkins said it would be a monstrous thing to disqualify men who had voted since the Reform Act of 1832. His (Mr. Wood's) opinion was that this case was simply a private charity, enabling the latter end of the lives of these people to be more comfortable. By the generosity of the Duke and the late Marquis they were not governed by the case of Harrison v. Carter, or Baker against the Town Clerk of Monmouth. The men occupying the new Crane-street almshouses were entitled to be registered. Mr. SELLARS Will you grant me a case ? Mr. BURKE WOOD: Yes. CREWE. THE REVISING BARRISTER AND THE LODGER. Mr. Colt Williams resumed and completed the revision of voters for the Crewe district on Wednesday. The lodger claims caused a great deal of interest. In one case Robert Carron, logger, had signed his claim that he had occu- pied apartments twelve months. The barrister ascertained that he had only occupied eleven weeks, and told the claimant he was liable to prosecution. He should report to the Public Prosecutor any similar case. MOLD. At the County Hall, on Wednesday, the Hon. Richard C. Grosvenor attended to revise the list of voters for Mold, Buckley, Nerquis, and Tryddyn. There was no attendance of the general public, and the proceedings throughout were devoid of interest. The Liberals were represented by Mr. John Morgan (Mold), and the Conservatives by Mr. T. W. Hughes (Flint). The clerk of the County Council (Mr. Thos. T. Kelly) attended, and asked the revising barrister his opinion on the revision of the Threapwood township, which had been transferred to Cheshire for all purposes. The list was at present unrevised. and the electors were in danger of being disfranchised, and the assistant overseer of losing his remuneration for the work done. From the order ot the Local Government Board he considered it should be revised by the revising barrister for Cheshire, and Mr. Grosvenor said he was of the same opinion. He would, however, if the list was sent to him, revise it this time, and the opinion of the Local Government Board must be obtained upon it.—Mr. Kellv: Perhaps they want to save the rates. (Laughter.)—Mr. Charles Brookfield, of Buckley, claimed to have his name inserted in the ownership list. The Assistant Overseer stated his name did not appear on the rate-book. Mr. Brookfield said he was joint owner of five cottages and seven acres of land, situated at Spon Green. The Barrister asked for the deeds. Mr. Brookfield said they were at home. The Barrister: If your vote is challenged you should bring your deeds. As the agents raised no objection, the claim was allowed.—The objection by the Con- servatives to the vote of the Rev. Harry Drew (Buckley) was withdrawn. The Barrister announced that he would give his decision in the appeal by the four vicars choral of St. Asaph, whose votes had been struck off the list at Wrexham, on the 29th inst. In concluding the work of the day he stated that the whole of the lists in the county had been exceedingly well done.—A vote of thanks to the Barrister for his courtesy towards those engaged at the court was proposed by Mr. Morgan and seconded by Mr. Hughes after which the proceedings terminated. VICARS AND THEIR FREEHOLD BENEFICES. The Hon. R. C. Grosvenor, revising barrister for Flintshire, gave an important decision at the St. Asaph Revision Court, on Tuesday, affecting the votes of the four vicars-choral of St. Asaph, who claimed ownership votes as possessors of freehold benefices. The Liberals objected, on the ground that the vicars derived their stipends from a tithe rent charge from certain adjacent townships in shares, which made them a corporation aggregate, and as such they had no right to vote. The Conservative agent contended that the tithes were not divided, but that certain rent charges were set apart and apportioned to each benefice.-The Barrister said that, in his opinion, the claimants did not come within the definition of persons possessed of the whole of the charge, as each one only received a fourth share. He dis- allowed the votes, but granted an application for a case to decide the question in the higher courts. A WELL-KNOWN MONEY-LENDER AND HIS VOTE. In the Birmingham Revision Court, on Tues- day, on the objection of Mr. S. Barton, the Conservative agent, Isaac Gordon, the well- known money-lender, of Great Western Build- ings, Livery-street, was struck off the burgess roll, on the grounds that he was an alien by birth and had never been naturalised. No voice was raised in support of his vote. ALMSMEN AND THEIR VOTES. Relying on the judgment of Mr. Justice Hawkins in the appeal case of Cowen v. the Town Clerk of Kingston-on-Hull, the Conserva- tives at Abingdon Revision Court on Thursday claimed Parliamentary and municipal votes for about fifty inmates of almshouses. It was stated that the old people were elected for life, and were in receipt of a regular weekly allow- ance from the charitable bodies who elected them. The Revising Barrister conceded the principle that the alms people were entitled to exercise the franchise, and where occupation was formally proved he allowed the claims, but consented to state a case for appeal.



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