Thursday Flashback

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1915 Court

Some interesting cases under the Swine Fever Regulation and Movement Order of 1908 were at the Scarborough Police Court today. John F Chew, 15, Chapel Street, Filey, was summoned for having caused on March 8th ten pigs to be removed into Scarborough, a scheduled area within the meaning of the Swine Fever (Regulations and Movement) Order 1908.

James Wilson, 27, Albemarle Crescent, was accused for a similar offence, and Frank Hutchinson, 3, Beaconsfield Street, was summoned for having moved the pigs. William Avison, 25, Westborough, was summoned for receiving the pigs.

It appeared the pigs could be moved into a scheduled area on the securing, by seller (Chew), of a licence issued by the inspector to the local authority. Chew should have applied for this licence – he should have made a declaration, had it countersigned by a police constable, as a sort of guarantee that, so far as could be seen, the pigs were in good health, sent the declaration to the inspector to the local authority. Mr Good, veterinary surgeon, and the latter, if satisfied, would have sent the licence. Wilson, on behalf of Avison, had purchased the pigs from Chew at Seamer Market. Chew had filled up a declaration, Form E, which was for the removal of pigs for slaughter. In the latter case they should have had a red mark on their backs. There was, however, no red mark, and the pigs were taken to Mr Avison’s premises at Stepney Road. To comply with the order Form B should have been secured – in the way indicated – and after the pigs were delivered they had to remain on the premises for 28 days so that the local authorities could trace any pigs in case of swine fever, and to see if these pigs were all right. The pigs were brought some way in a rully, and Hutchinson completed the removal. Chew had handed to the drover Hutchinson, Form E, and on the completion of the removal, the drover should have handed the form in at the nearest police office. He, however, gave it to Avison. It had been the custom of some drovers to give the licences to the persons to whose premises they had been removed, and the new owners had taken the licences to the police station. The police did not object to that so long as they got the declaration. Hutchinson had said he did not open the paper, and thought it was the paper form. Avison, said the Chief Constable, would understand the form, and he neglected to do what he should have done.

Avison said he did not understand the matter at all.

Mr Good stated that he just knew of the pigs on Saturday March 13th, when he heard from PC Welburn.

For the defence Chew said he expected he was fulfilling all the obligations necessary in filling in Form E. He had not seen any of the other forms for eight or nine months. He did not know where the pigs were being sent to. Wilson said that he had usually used Form E. He bought the pigs from Chew at Filey, they were brought to Seamer, and then taken to Scarborough. Witness had nothing to do with the removal.

By the Chief: When the pigs set off from near Seamer witness was not there – at the spot. He had asked a man to take them, and the man arranged with Hutchinson. He thought Form E for fat pigs for slaughter also referred to store pigs. In his experience pigs for the slaughter were not marked.

Avison said he gave Wilson an order for 10 or 15 store pigs. That was at the beginning of March. Some days later he was told by Wilson that he had got the pigs. When they were delivered Hutchinson said he had taken the pigs, and asked if he (Avison) would pay. He asked who had engaged him, understood him to say it was Mr Wilson, and told him to get the money from Wilson.

Wilson said he gave Hutchinson 2s but did not engage him. 
Witness (Avison) said he did not know he had to take the form to the police station. He had previously kept them - he thought he had to do so for his own safety.

The Mayor said the latter felt there had been very great laxity on the part of those concerned in regard to the removal of the swine. They thought the procedure ought to be clearly understood. The Mayor then explained the procedure, and said if there was no check it would give rise to the greatest danger.

In those particular cases regarding Chew the magistrates thought the evidence did not clearly indicate that Chew knew where they were going, or that he caused them to be removed. The case against him would be dismissed. In regard to Wilson they thought he was responsible for them being removed. He would be fined 10s, including costs. Hutchinson was actually concerned in moving the pigs, but taking the circumstances into consideration, he would be fined 7s 6d. Respecting Avison there was no doubt he received the pigs in contravention of the regulations. It was his duty to see that the paper was in order. He would be fined 10s.