A personal post from Graham Ellis
Lisa and Graham live in Melksham, Wiltshire, England

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Riots in Melksham

Melksham has a place in history - with riots in 1738, 1747 and 1750. From Wiltshire Community Hostory ... "In Melksham, unlike Trowbridge, the [clothier] industry suffered further decline in the 18th century and it was also plagued with disputes and disturbances. In 1738 a leading clothier, Henry Coulthurst, had his house and mills wrecked by weavers during a dispute over wages and eventually troops were sent in, some of the rioters were tried and three were executed. There were further riots in 1747 and 1750 and dragoons were sent to the town to help keep order. Some clothiers went bankrupt in the mid 18th century and the industry continued to decline. This does not seem to have had too much effect on building in the town for, although there are no clothiers •[99] mansions here, many of the buildings on the main streets date from this century. By this time the major route through the town, King Street, High Street and Bank Street, was built up.". And a further descriptions [here]. The police weren't taking any chances today - here are some scenes outside Well House Manor.



Things started to get a little warm when two young ladies put up barriers blocking traffic at 4:30 - a full hour before the parade started from the other end of town - outside the Texaco garage. Irate people, trying to drive home before the carnival, found themselves blocked and with no positive alternative suggested to them, and no sensible reason given. "We have been told to stop all traffic".

The garage operator was seriously concerned, with people turning in temper on her forecourt - an accident waiting to happen, and a tanker load of petrol due any minute. I was less than happy, as I had advised our customers to approach from Bowerhill knowing there would be a road closure while the parade passed and on the town side of us. I approached the young ladies and asked why the block was on so early, why it was a much longer section blocked than in previous years, whether they could let people visiting our business through, as it was well before the parade route. "We're just volunteers and we've been told to do this". Hmmm - "is that a copy of the street closure order you're holding? What does it say?". "Oh no - we don't have any paperwork - we've been told to stop all traffic here and we can't let anything through". "OK - we're a 24 hour business, we're expecting visitors and we were not told. What should we do?" "Nothing can go through. But we will call the police." And call the police they did... ("We're getting nothing but abuse" I heard them say - funny that, as what they were getting was a stream of good questions, from a lot of people, which they couldn't answer. I heard no abuse, though there may have been some from others).

And, now here's a surprise, the police told them to move the barrier to the usual place. Much safer for the garage. Our guests could get in - and several of our neighbours came over, said "hi" and "thank you" and "I was going to join in too if you needed more guns". And we got ourselves some more police.


 


For saying that we got more police, they were much more professional (well, they would be) than the illtrained jobsworth volunteers who, I noticed, say "nothing can pass" then let the police through. The police cleared the traffic, let those who could reasonably and sensibly get home before the parade do so, and we let people who had been caught out park at Well House Manor. The police even got a chance to watch.



And indeed I took some pictures of the parade too - I'll have a look at what I got, and post them tomorrow - but here's my starter.



See also [here] for more overzealous police activity and how their superior then had to cover their tracks as they had rather overstepped their remit. Old habits die hard with those who take it upon themselves to try and order us about!
(written 2013-07-13, updated 2013-07-15)

 
Associated topics are indexed as below, or enter http://melksh.am/nnnn for individual articles
Z212 - Public Holidays and festivals
  [4287] TransWilts CRP - walking in Melksham Carnival - (2014-07-13)
  [4141] My pictures of Melksham Carnival, 13th July 2013 - (2013-07-14)
  [4120] American Circus in Melksham - (2013-06-22)
  [3513] Olympic Torch - dates and places in Wiltshire in 2012 - (2011-11-08)
  [3360] Melksham Carnival, 2011 - pictures - (2011-07-17)
  [3207] Lambing at Lackham - (2011-03-19)
  [3191] Date of the Census (which month and day?) - (2011-03-03)
  [3062] Melksham Carnival - getting ready for 2011 - (2010-11-20)
  [2875] A long day in Melksham ... - (2010-07-17)
  [2671] Melksham - Carnival, Party in the Park, and Spot the Oddity - (2010-03-11)
  [2656] Melksham Carnival - (2010-02-28)
  [2498] Remembrance Sunday 2009, Melksham - (2009-11-08)
  [2298] Melksham Carnival Parade - the people - (2009-07-19)
  [2297] Standing on the corner, Melksham Carnival - (2009-07-19)
  [1770] 3 hours from Milton Keynes - (2008-08-24)
  [1631] Looking back through some photos - (2008-05-04)
  [1540] Chinese New Year - (2008-02-15)
  [1269] Party in the Park - review - (2007-07-17)
  [1209] Where did the Bank Holiday go? - (2007-05-29)
  [637] Carnival - (2006-03-07)
  [429] Charlie on Monday - (2005-08-30)
  [131] Thanksgiving dinner - (2004-11-26)
  [35] Autumn arrives right on time - (2004-09-01)
  [30] Bank Holiday - (2004-08-27)

Z801 - Pettifog
  [4720] Celebrating our diversity rather than discriminating for it - (2016-11-02)
  [4651] Pressure selling in the fire safety business - (2016-02-19)
  [4630] The story behind the bus cuts, and what they could mean - (2016-01-24)
  [4354] Wiltshire Police - assuming someone is guilty just on the say-so of a member of the public? - (2014-12-16)
  [4304] Please do not ask me to be the chair! - (2014-09-25)
  [4282] On tipping - and the expectation of a tip - (2014-07-10)
  [4167] The important customers are the majority, not the celebrity - (2013-09-08)
  [3900] The Xxxxx Guest House in Xxxxxxxxxxx - my stay reviewed - (2012-10-20)
  [3835] The Information age - not yet truly with us? - (2012-08-12)
  [3749] Removal of water safety equipment, and how to use a lifesaver ring - (2012-06-04)
  [3302] Are you a half full or half empty person? - (2011-05-25)
  [3084] Can you trust the big brand names? - (2010-12-12)
  [3030] Liquorice allsorts and Dolly Mixtures - (2010-11-05)
  [3013] Audio equipment - (2010-10-24)
  [2944] What others cannot do in 10 months takes Virgin 10 minutes - (2010-09-03)
  [2937] The cat in the dustbin - (2010-08-27)
  [2788] Cost of Sales - (2010-06-01)
  [2761] A small business, facing a big government questionnaire - (2010-05-12)
  [2625] Both feet on the same pavement - (2010-02-05)
  [2193] Excellent product, excruciating customer service. 3 Mobile Broadband - (2009-05-21)
  [2122] Commission Creep - (2009-04-08)
  [1972] Pettifog and forum boards away from public view - (2009-01-03)
  [1862] Remember your units - (2008-10-31)
  [1839] Job application - (2008-10-13)
  [1783] Think before you send - (2008-09-02)
  [1741] Age Concern - (2008-08-07)
  [1349] Cash is not an acceptable way of paying - (2007-09-13)
  [1337] A series of tyre damages - (2007-09-08)
  [1170] Smoking, or no? The law insists we spell out the obvious - (2007-05-01)
  [826] Fighting illegal net use by imposing download limits - (2006-08-09)
  [815] Time trickles like water through a sieve - (2006-07-27)
  [791] Strange housewarming - (2006-07-03)
  [783] Good follow up ... my thanks - (2006-06-28)
  [638] A pile of sand? Where do we stand? - (2006-03-08)
  [600] It costs nothing to say THANK YOU - (2006-02-11)
  [562] Smoke and mirrors - (2006-01-12)
  [519] New Road - (2005-12-06)
  [478] Watch what you wear - (2005-10-26)
  [471] And it gets even better - (2005-10-21)
  [439] You cant - (2005-09-08)
  [323] 1 in 48 steel - (2005-05-24)
  [90] Rude old people - (2004-10-16)
  [87] Too sittings - (2004-10-13)
  [52] International awareness - (2004-09-17)


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My pictures of Melksham Carnival, 13th July 2013
Some other Articles
Getting the best hotel rates - customer and hotelier viewpoints
Bus times - Melksham to Bath from 28th July 2013
Passenger survey at Chippenham - report and pictures
Riots in Melksham
Out of doors (mostly) at Well House in Melksham
Should a hotel accept guests who book for just one night?
Early morning - welcoming business and leisure guests to Melksham
How do I post automatically from a PHP script to my Twitter account?
Introducing your product to Well House Consultants - single, personally tuned email please
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This is a page archived from The Horse's Mouth at http://www.wellho.net/horse/ - the diary and writings of Graham Ellis. Every attempt was made to provide current information at the time the page was written, but things do move forward in our business - new software releases, price changes, new techniques. Please check back via our main site for current courses, prices, versions, etc - any mention of a price in "The Horse's Mouth" cannot be taken as an offer to supply at that price.

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