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DISPUTE ABOUT A HOLYWELL HOTEL.…

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DISPUTE ABOUT A HOLYWELL HOTEL. ACTION AGAINST A CHESTER WINE MERCHANT. On Thursday, at the Chester County Court, before his Honour Judge Sir Horatio Lloyd, a singular case, which had been remitted from the High Court, was heard, in which Mrs. Matilda May Jennings, formerly of the Cross Keys Hotel, Holywell, and of Church Street, Rhyl, sued for damages for illegal distraint from Thomas Montgomery, wine and spirit merchant, formerly of Liverpool, but now re- siding in Chester. i Mr. Jordan, barrister, Manchester, appeared for the plaintiff, and Mr. S. Moss, M.P., was for the defendant. Mr. Jordan stated that plaintiff was married to her husband in September, 1885, and there was an ante-nuptial settlement at the time, by which the furniture and effects belonging to Mr. Jennings were conveyed to a trustee upon trust for Mrs. Jennings. Mr. and Mrs. Jen- nings resided together for some little time, but eventually Mrs. Jennings started oa her own account with a boarding-house at Liseard. The husband about thst time went to sea, and was absent for about eighteen months, and after that he went to Birmingham, where he obtained a situation. During that time Mrs. Jennings supported herself and her children by taking in lodgers, and as the furniture she got from her husband became worn out, she purchased fresh furniture-in fact, the husband had nothing whatever to do with the house for a long time. In 1894, defendant had a conversation with Mrs. Jennings in reference to the Cross Keys Hotel, Holywell, which she was desirous her husband should manage for him, and an ar- rangement was arrived at. Defendant was perfectly well aw ire that all the furniture be- longed to Mrs. Jennings. He engaged Mr. Jennings as manager of the hotel, and the ar- rangement come to was that he was to pay 25s. a week as wages, and that he (defendant) was to have all'the profits which arose from the sale of liquors and cigars on the premises, and that Mrs. Jennings was to carry on the restaurant business and receive the profits herself. A conversation took place between Mrs. Jennings and Mr. Montgomery, in which it was explained to the latter that all the furniture was hers, and Mr. Montgomery seemed to have come to the conclusion that this furniture would be ample for furnishing the hotel. Matters did not go on very prosperously at the hotel. Mr. Jen- nings got into airear as regarded what he owed Mr. Montgomery for drink and other things, and finally had to leave the place, Mrs. Jen- nings going with him. The good-will of the hotel was sold, and Mr. Jennings paid part of what he owed to Mr. Montgomery, and gave a promissory note for the balance-965. After that Mrs. Jennings commenced a boarding- house again on her own account at Rhyl, and carried it on without any assistance from her husband, who obtained the position of manager to a Conway hotel. Later on, Mr. Montgomery, having obtaided judgment upon this promissory note, put in an execution into Mrs. Jennings' house at Rhyl. It was well-known in the dis- trict that this was Mrs. Jennings' house, and the Sheriff's officer, knowing the state of affairs, refused at first to go into possession uncil he received explicit instructions. The levy having been carried out, a claim was put in by Mrs. Jennings, and an order was made by which the sheriff was ordered to withdraw on payment of E30 possession money. Mrs. Jennings could not pay the JE30 to get the articles out, and the result was that the sale was proceeded with. The amount realised was £120. though Mrs. Jennings said the furniture was well worth £ 300; and the sale had been a very great loss to her, and in addition to that she had been ab- solutely deprived of her living, for she was un- able to keep the boarding house. The defence set up was that plaintiff had been guilty of what amounted to fraud by mis- representing to Mr. Montgomery that all these things were the goods of her husband, and that on the faith of that the goods were supplied and the promissory note accepted. After evidence, his Honour reserved judg- ment.

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