Haverfordwest History

AtoZ Challenge – H: Haverfordwest Court Proceedings #atozchallenge

The Blogging from A to Z April Challenge is for bloggers who wish to participate, by publishing a blog post every day in April except for Sundays. Each blog post will focus on a letter of the alphabet. For example April 1 will be A, April 2 will be B, April 3 will be C, and on it goes. By the end of April, a blog post for every letter of the alphabet will have been published.   Blog posts are usually on a theme, or you can choose to post each day with no theme at all. My theme for 2024 is “Haverfordwest in the News”. Haverfordwest is a town in the county of Pembrokeshire, Wales.

#AtoZChallenge 2024 letter H

 from: The Welshman, Friday 20 July 1877, page 5. Retrieved on 20 November 2023, from britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk


This court was held at the Shire Hall, on Saturday last, before Charles Wager Ryalls , Esq.,L1D, of the Midland Circuit. Immediately after the Judge took his seat, the award of the arbitrator in the case of R. G. Bonniwell and George Thomas, was handed to the parties interested in the matter for their perusal, when judgment was entered in accordance with it. The following is a copy of the award :—” To Herbert Lloyd, Esq,. registrar of the County Court, Haverfordwest – Sir, By the authority vested in me, by order of the above Court, dated May 29th. 1877, appointing me as arbitrator, to enquire into a disputed account between R. G. Bonniwell, plaintiff, and George Thomas, defendant, I hereby certify that on the 27th day of June, I held the said Arbitration Court, at the South Wales Hotel, Neyland, when the plaintiff and defendant, with counsel, solicitors, and witnesses were present, and the case was fully heard by me.

The plaintiff alleged that he had purchased the wreck referred to in his bill of charges, on the 12th day of Dec., 1872,  and from that date to the 30th, he charges £l6 for placing a light on the said wreck, but from the distance of time, he was not very certain as to the exact day, and from the same cause throughout the enquiry, there was come doubt as to dates, but from certain letters, and the agreement of sale produced and proved by Mr Kelway, which fixed the date of sale to the 21st Dec. and not on the 12th.

This was corroborated by a letter from Capt. Evans, of the Trinity service, to Mr Bonniwell on the 21st December, asking plaintiff to tender for the removal of the mast from the wreck, and his reply on 12th asking £30 for the work. The witness Mr Kelway, further proved that the smack was employed and paid for by him on the 16th December, 1872, and 21st February, 1873, and for such hire he paid the plaintiff £5 and £8 respectively.

The witness H. Rees stated that in January, 1873, he was employed as ship keeper on board the ship ” Barmah” then at Pembroke Dock yard, and that the plaintiff’s sloop took one anchor and chain alongside, and delivered the same to the said ship. This was further corroborated by the witness Picton, the signal man on board the smack, who said: “I remember us taking up one anchor and chain out of the river off Great Castle Head, and taking the same and delivering them to the ship ” Burnish,” then lying off Pembroke yard. He further stated that he was employed every day, when they worked at the wreck, and when the weather did not suit, to go afloat. They worked on shore for plaintiff, and that the man Evans, did not work on the wreck, but was employed with another man, with plaintiff as boatman attending the forts. I find, as per bill, the hire of sloop amounts to £8O, while being so charged the sloop was employed elsewhere, and earned money for the plaintiff to the amount of £20, and the hire from the 12th to 21st December (nine days) charged in error £8 2s 6d, and 14s mistake in the sale of rope, amounting to £36 16s 6d (£l5 of this sum was the proceeds of delivery of anchor and chain), for which he gave his co-partners no credit.

In coming to my award I kept before me the £36 16s 6d, earned by the sloop, also the nature and value of the work performed, and the season of the year, which made any such work expensive by the said sloop, and crew of seven men; and I find that the time occupied in the accomplishment of the work was out of all proportion to the service rendered. Had there been any attempt made to float or carry the wrecked ship on shore, the failure would end in a great loss, and would account for the continuous employment of sloop and men; but from the evidence there was no attempt to raise the wreck, but only to get the mast and sails, rope, rigging, etc., from the ship which lay in 12 to 16 fathoms of water in a safe port.

That a process should involve a continuous employment of the sloop, and seven men from December 13th, 1872, to March 29th, 1873, also 94 days of supplemented labour, in addition to the crew of seven men, compels me, however reluctantly, to abandon the bill of particulars, and value the work by the service rendered, allowing a proper value for the sloop, when employed in occasionally burning a light on the sunken wreck, till the mast was taken out (as it was not even suggested that anything further was attempted), therefore, in addition to the sloop being employed as a light vessel with the seven men, that they also saved from the wreck the spars, riggings, sails, &c. (the anchor and chain saved by other sources), and for the whole of the combined service, I value at £lO9 4s 7d; less credit account, £64 4s 7d ; the one third of the £45 being £l6 the defendant to pay to plaintiff, and each to pay all expenses in equal parts. —JAMES GADDARN, ARBITRATOR

**Please notePunctuation and paragraphs have been added to the above transcription for ease and speed of reading.

1877. HAVERFORDWEST, The Welshman, Friday 20 July, 1877, page 5,Retrieved on November 20, 2023 from British Newspaper Archive

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