History Topics About Tewkesbury

Women's Suffrage partial franchise anniversary


A century ago on this day the Representation of the People Act passed into law. In the following December, women were allowed to vote in Parliamentary Elections.  BUT not all women – only those over 30 and who possessed certain property ...

Civic Heraldry of Tewkesbury


Tewkesbury was granted a Charter by Elizabeth I in 1574, which created the Common Council to govern the town, which comprised two Bailiffs and twelve principal burgesses. This Common Council continued until it was swept away by the Municipal Corporations ...

Law And Order In Nineteenth Century Tewkesbury, Part 3


The Calendar of Prisoners in Tewkesbury Gaol opens with a title page in spidery handwriting headed, ‘Thomas Ricketts, Gaoler’ . It goes on to list the Bailiffs of the town. The year as 1816, and the ‘new gaol’ had been set up at the end of the ...

Tewkesbury's Early Freemen


In modern times, the award of the freedom of a borough, town or city is a symbolic honour, bestowed by the donor on its recipient as a mark of esteem and respect, usually celebrating some service which the new freeman has given to the donor authority or ...

The Ordinances of Tewkesbury Borough Council in 1575


A record book was started in 1575 following the establishment of Tewkesbury by royal charter. It is a thick book with a stout leather cover and buckle and strap to secure it. Some early pages of the book have become damaged by time and possibly frequent ...

Lighten Our Darkness


The period 1830-1860 was one of the most politically and socially agitated of the century. In 1832, many believed that England had come as close to revolution as at any time in her history. As the reform bill of 1832, the Chartist riots and the agitation ...

The Tewkesbury Bread Riot of 1795


This article first appeared in THS Bulletin 22 (2013). It was shortlisted for the county Jerrard Award .

Law And Order in Nineteenth Century Tewkesbury, Part 2


In 1840 a document was published which gives an interesting insight into the working of the local constabulary. It was the handbook of the Tewkesbury Constabulary, containing instructions for both the Superintendent and his constables. Printed by 'Jenner, ...

The Tewkesbury Barons


With the death of Henry, Lord Capel, in 1696 the Barony of Tewkesbury, created for him in 1692, became extinct. It remained so, however, for only ten years, being resurrected by Queen Anne in 1706. Today the title is one of those held by the Fitzclarence ...

Cholera in 19th Century Tewkesbury


The arrival of cholera in England for the first time in October 1831 could hardly have come at a less propitious time. The rapid growth of the new industrial towns and cities, with their haphazard arrangements for water supply and sewage disposal, had ...

A List of Floods


Having investigated the 1947 flood, Derek Round was intrigued to find out more about other floods in History.[l] One valuable source is James Bennett, the Tewkesbury Historian, who gives valuable anecdotal evidence and the results of his own ...

The Lords of Tewkesbury


Earl Bertric’s rejection of Matilda, who was later to become the wife of William the Conqueror, resulted in his being the last (Saxon) Lord of Tewkesbury. After William died in 1087, his son, William Rufus, granted the Lordship to Robert Fitzhamon , ...

The Great Flood of 1947


In the winter of 1946/47 heavy snowstorms and sub-zero temperatures, combined with a serious fuel shortage, caused chaos and brought Britain to its knees. Because of 20ft snowdrifts, coal trains failed to get through to power stations. These appalling ...

As Poor as a Church Mouse


Tewkesbury is fortunate that many of its probate inventories survive from the early modern period. These legal documents were drawn up to assist the transmission of property after the death of the testator, they were usually ...

The 1714 Coronation Riot in Tewkesbury


Some Tewkesbury based readers may have sat in the ‘Secret Garden’ of the Tudor House Hotel enjoying a drink and read the following inscription set above a door: “THIS OLD OAK DOOR CARRIES THE BATTLE-AXE SCARS INFLICTED UPON IT BY JACOBITE RIOTORS DURING ...

The state of the Corporation 1833


In 1835, the Gloucestershire Chronicle published a report on the Borough, explaining the way the Corporation worked and reviewing the state of the local economy. It is surprising how much which is now done at County or even national level was once ...

Gloucester Journal

An Accident on Holm Hill - Wednesday 14 December 1825

An accident, which had nearly proved of the most serious consequence, happened at Tewkesbury on Wednesday afternoon. As one of the Bath coaches, on its way to Worcester, was descending the hill near the House of industry. the splinter-bar broke, by which the horses (the best and most spirited upon the road) became no longer subject to the guidance and control of the coachman, and a most awful prospect presented itself to the unfortunate passengers. The Hermitage turnpike-gate is situated immediately at the bottom of the bill, and a narrow bridge over the river Swilgate is just beyond ; and, as the horses were Going at full speed, it seemed past the bounds of probability that they would steer clear both of the gate-posts and of the low rails of the bridge; they did, however, luckily avoid both ; but the vehicle came in contact with the railing on the causeway between the bridge and the church, and the coach, the horses—and, of course, the driver and passengers —were hurled together into the field beneath. But we are happy to say that the injury sustained was astonishingly trivial: the coachman and some of the outside passengers, and a lady who was inside, suffered a few bruises, but neither the horses nor coach sustained any material damage—although the meadow into which they rolled is at least six feet below the surface of the road. Had the coach gone over only a few yards nearer the turnpike, the consequences must have been dreadful, as the whole would then have been precipitated to a great depth into the midst of the river, which was at that time very much swollen from the recent rains—Gloucester Journal.

Accidents with stage coaches were quite frequent, the most common cause was either misjudgement by coachmen descending hills or a failure of the very rudimentary breaking system, as in this case

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