top of page

BARNARD FAMILY - Newspaper Articles

Hmmm, how to describe the Barnard family without upsetting the descendants? Well, I'm descended from them so the dirty laundry will appear here! While much has been written about the heroics of Thomas Barnard and his family in life-saving and salvaging the other side of the story is less well known and not particularly pretty. 

Many Barnard tales will appear under the fishing or salvaging headings (above), leaving the court cases etc for this section. The women of Rowhedge could be as badly behaved as the men and I would not like to have been on the receiving end of a right hook from Mary Barnard. One case in which she headed a baying mob led the defending solicitor to state that the case had been supported by perjury and swearing such as during his experience of 30 years he had never heard in a Court of Justice before. The prosecution witnesses were no better. Ok, some articles will raise a smile but the appalling behaviour of some family members shows why Rowhedge was often referred to as "Rough" hedge. Read on!....

Please note that articles regarding the Barnard's  life-saving and salvaging exploits are not on this page but on the Salvaging & Concealment page under the Maritime History heading.

William Turner BARNARD

Born: Bures, Suffolk. Died: 20 October 1872, aged 86, East Donyland. Buried: 26 October 1872, East Donyland


AT FIRST MARRIAGE - EAST DONYLAND, 1 April 1812: William Turner BARNARD, Single, of the parish, signed. Sophia POWELL, single, of the parish. Witnesses; James IVES and Elizabeth POWELL both signed.



Born: 13 December 1790, East Donyland. Baptised: 28 July 1793, East Donyland. Died: 25 July 1858, aged 68, East Donyland

Buried: 28 July 1858, East Donyland

William and Sophia had twelve children, several of whom get mentions in the following articles.


THE ESSEX STANDARD - Saturday 10 November 1832 - “MOOT-HALL, COLCHESTER, Nov. 8 - A charge was exhibited against William Turner Barnard, of East Donyland, by Mr. Joseph Verlander, under the following circumstances:- A bargain was made by these parties for the mutual exchange of their horses; but some differences having arisen, Barnard followed Verlander to the Plough Inn, at Colchester, and effected a re-exchange of the horses in the stable there, without consulting any body. After a great deal of explanation, the Magistrates, considering the matter more as affair of civil contract than of felonious character, recommended, as in the case of Seaman and Holden [a similar case heard earlier that day], and amicable arrangement, which was effected, and the matter dropped.”

THE ESSEX STANDARD - 23 February 1833 - “COLCHESTER CASTLE - Saturday. Mr. R. Pitt, of the Ship Inn, East Donyland, obtained a warrant against Thomas Barnard of that parish, mariner, for breaking the windows in complainant’s house, because he refused to allow him to annoy his other customers by smoking therein. This was not the first offence.”


ESSEX HERALD – Tuesday 26 February 1833 –“COLCHESTER CASTLE, 23rd Feb. 1833.- Thomas Barnard, mariner, of East Donyland, was charged by Mr. Pitt, the landlord of the Ship Inn there, with breaking his windows. The offence was proved, but Mr. Pitt wishing him not to be severely punished, the Bench ordered him to pay the costs only, 9s., which he did, and was discharged.”

THE ESSEX STANDARD - Saturday 25 May 1833 - “COLCHESTER CASTLE - Saturday.- Joseph Wasp, a mariner, applied for a summons against a young man, named Thomas Barnard, for an assault.- Barnard, the father, was present in the Court, and applied for a counter-warrant against the complainant for having assaulted his son. Both parties live at East Donyland. It appeared from the statement of the opposing parties, that the dispute in question, arose out of an old misunderstanding, under which circumstances the Bench refused to grant a summons to either of the applicants.”

THE ESSEX STANDARD - Saturday 3 August 1833 - “COLCHESTER CASTLE - Saturday. POOR RATES - The constable of East Donyland appeared to prove the service of a summons upon Wm, Barnard, of that place, fisherman, for non-payment of poor rates amounting to 4l. 13s. 6d. Barnard not appearing, the affidavit of such service was taken, and a warrant of distress issued to levy the same.”

THE ESSEX STANDARD - Saturday 15 July 1836 - “UNFORTUNATE CASE - Mr. William Barnard, sprat merchant, of East Donyland, having lost his eldest daughter on the 20th ult., after a protracted and severe affliction, came to Colchester for the purpose of purchasing some plank for her coffin; and on his return home, when near the Military burial-ground, his horse (a valuable one, that he had recently purchased), fell down, and died in a few minutes. Mr. B. is a very industrious man, and having a wife and ten children dependent upon him for support, seriously feels so severe a loss in addition to that of his child. A subscription has been set on foot, to enable him to purchase another horse for the purpose of his trade; and we sincerely hope, that by the assistance of his friends, he will be able to accomplish so desirable an object.”

THE CHELMSFORD CHRONICLE - 19 May 1837 - Colchester - “At the Moot Hall yesterday.... Wm. Barnard, of East Donyland, was locked up in default of finding bail to keep the peace for 12 months, for a riot at Old Heath, where he fought for a prize, on Tuesday.”


Name of vessel; UNITY

Burthen; 17 2760 3500 tons

Master; Turner Barnard

When & where built; Built at East Donyland in the present year as appears by a certificate of William Cheek the builder dated the ninth day of December 1837.

When & where registered; No.42. 9 December 1837, Colchester.

Surveying Officer; Thomas Denton

Decks; One. Mast; One. Length; 36 feet 8 tenths. Breadth; 11 feet 9 tenths. Depth in hold; 6 feet 2 tenths

Smack rigged with; Running bowsprit

Kind of vessel; Square sterned, carvel built smack with neither galleries not figurehead

Admeasured; 26 91 94 tons

Subscribing owner; Turner Barnard of East Donyland in the County of Essex, Fish Merchant.Shares; 64

Custom House Colchester - 15 December 1837, Turner Barnard of East Donyland in the County of Essex, Fish Merchant, has transferred by deed of mortgage dated the 13th instant sixty four shares to John English of Bocking in the County of Essex Esquire.The above mortgage is paid and satisfied as appears by an endorsement on the Bill of Sale dated 24th June 1844.

Custom House Colchester - 3 September 1842, Turner Barnard of East Donyland in the County of Essex has transferred by Bill of Sale dated the 1st inst thirty two sixty fourths parts of shares of the within described vessel to Thomas Barnard of East Donyland aforesaid, subject nevertheless to a former mortgage dated the 13th day of December 1837 to John English Esq. of Bocking in the said County.

New Masters appointed to the UNITY - 9 December 1837 Henry Barnard vice Turner Barnard.17 April 1841 Thomas Barnard in the room of Henry Barnard.

EAST DONYLAND TITHE MAP - 1839. William Turner Barnard.

Plot No.9 - Pightle, on Head Street, above West Street, measuring 1-1-07.

Plot No.39 - House and Yard opposite the Anchor Pub. Owner and Occupier, measuring 0-0-06.

THE ESSEX STANDARD - Friday 8 May 1840 - “CHARGE OF TRESPASS AT EAST DONYLAND - George Levett, mariner, of East Donyland, brought a charge of trespass, and damage to a gate, against William Turner Barnard, a mariner, of the same place.- Mr. H.S. Goody appeared for the complainant, and Mr. J.H. Church for the defendant.- The charge was that of having on the 10th ultimo, wilfully damaged a gate leading to the wharf and quay, at Donyland, by breaking the lock, and thereby forcing his way to the said wharf.

Mr. Goody called Philip Scowen, constable of Donyland, to prove that he served a summons upon the defendant, to appear to answer the above charge, on the 18th ult., and saw him the same evening, at the White Lion, where defendant told him that he broke open the gate and would do it again.

Mr. Goody then stated that, in the year 1836, complainant bought some property at Rowhedge; and in order more clearly to inform the Magistrates as to the situation of the same, he had brought the map of the parish. [The map was here put in, and inspected by the Magistrates.] Complainant sold a part of that property to the defendant, and he (Mr. Goody) prepared the conveyances. At the time of the purchase being made defendant requested that he might be allowed a right-of-way from the property across the wharf; but this complainant refused, and, ultimately, defendant agreed to take the property subject to those restrictions. Notwithstanding that, he had laid claim to a right-of-way, and to effect it had broken open a gate and caused damage to the amount of 2s. 3d., the value of the lock destroyed. Mr. Goody then cited the clause of the Trespass Act under which this complaint was laid, which enacted, that in all cases of trespass where a defendant did not act under a fair and reasonable supposition that he had a right to do the same, the Justices might convict. It would be absurd to suppose that the defendant in this case acted from any such impression, as he was well aware that by a deed of conveyance, under his hand, he had waived all claim to a right-of-way to the wharf and quay.

Mr. Church said that the manner in which Mr. Goody had introduced the case took it out of Court. The clause of the Act quoted stated that unless a defendant acted under a fair and reasonable supposition that he was justified in committing a trespass, conviction before the Justices shall ensue. The defendant had acted under that supposition. He was not satisfied that the wharf was Levett’s property; as he (Mr. Church) was prepared with witnesses to prove that the public had enjoyed a right in that wharf for more than seventy years, and could still claim that right and remove all obstructions upon it. The defendant (admitting that he had put his hand to the deed of conveyance executed by Mr. Goody, to which he had referred) had no right to barter away that which was not his own, and could not dispose of a public right-of-way.

Mr. Goody. Did the defendant act under the supposition that he had a fair and reasonable right to commit this trespass after waiving his individual claim to a right-of-way?

Mr. Church. He acted as one of the public; and if you are not able to prove your title to the property in the wharf, the case must be tried in a court of common law.

Mr. Goody said he could produce title-deeds, executed 60 years back, which clearly proved his assertion.

The Chairman said that whatever right the public might have to try the question with complainant, yet still the defendant was not justified in taking active measures, inasmuch as he had tied himself down by the deed of conveyance.

Mr. Church then called William Mothersole, of Donyland, who stated that he had known the wharf in question for more than 40 years. It had been enclosed about fifteen months, although he had always considered it to be a common wharf and quay - open to all who had business to transact.

The Chairman. This evidence would be very proper if Mothersole, as one of the public, had asserted his claim to a right-of-way, but does not in any measure justify the trespass and damage by the defendant.

The Bench then appealed to Mr. Howard, their clerk, who observed that he considered defendant had been proved to have conceded all claim to a right-of-way. the case must, therefore, be viewed as a common trespass.

The Chairman then took the sense of the Bench, when the majority of Magistrates were for conviction under the Trespass Act, and the defendant was therefore fined 2s. 3d., the amount of damage, and 19s.expenses.

The Chairman also observed that the decision of the Court was not to the prejudice of a case being submitted to try the question of right-of-way between Levett and the public, if they chose to assert their claim.

As defendant declared his intention not to pay the fine and costs, the Bench allowed him a fortnight for consideration, and in default, at the end of that period, to be committed for 14 days.”

THE ESSEX STANDARD - Friday 15 May 1840 - “ELIGIBLE INVESTMENT IN FREEHOLD PREMISES, AT ROWHEDGE Near Colchester and Wivenhoe, TO BE SOLD BY AUCTION, BY Mr. J.G. Fenn, On Friday, the 29th day of May, 1840, at the Blue Posts Inn, Colchester, at Three o’clock in the Afternoon, by direction of the Mortgagees with power of Sale, in One or more Lots, as may be determined upon at the time and Place of Sale.

ALL that Brick and Tiled DWELLING-HOUSE, with a small Garden in front, a yard behind, and Shed thereon; now in the several occupations of Taber Cheek, Widow Banks, Philip Scowen, and George Cranfield, at rents amounting to the sum of £22.10. per annum.

Also a Boarded-and-Tiled DOUBLE COTTAGE, adjoining the above, with a valuable Piece of Ground in Front, well calculated for building purposes; now in the several occupations of Isaac Cutt and William Barnard, at rents amounting to £9. 10. per annum.

Also a very valuable Piece of GROUND, in front of the above, 90 feet in length and 50 feet in breadth, immediately adjoining the river Colne, which, at a small expense, would form a very commodious Quay or wharf for the landing of chalk, manure, coal, or any other merchandise; also for shipping corn or goods of any description.

This Property is very advantageously situated in the centre of Rowhedge, and, from its locality and the conveniences for shipping and landing goods, it is well deserving of public attention and competition.

For further particulars apply, personally or by letter (post-paid), to Henry Jackson, Esq., Solicitor, Braintree; Messrs. Church and Sons, Solicitors, Colchester; or the Auctioneer, Rookery, Ardleigh.”

THE ESSEX STANDARD - 24 September 1841 - “COLCHESTER CASTLE. Saturday, Sept.18.- A representation was made to the Bench by the Churchwardens and Surveyor of the parish of East Donyland of the nuisance occasioned by the practice on the part of Mr. W.T. Barnard, a fish merchant, who was in the habit of unloading a species of fish called “five-fingers,” used as manure, and leaving them to putrify by the side of the highway in the village of Rowhedge. It was also stated that the stench was so intolerable that the inhabitants near the spot would not continue to live in their houses unless it was done away with.- After some conversation the Chairman advised the surveyor to serve Mr. Barnard with a notice, and if the practice was continued to lay an indictment against him.”

1841 CENSUS - EAST DONYLAND. Monday 7 June 1841.

Turner Barnard age 52, Fish Merchant, not born in Essex

Sophia Barnard age 49, His Wife, born Essex

Elizabeth Barnard age 19, Daughter, born Essex

John Barnard age 18, Labourer, born Essex

Eliza Barnard age 15, Daughter, born Essex

Harriett Barnard age 11, Daughter, born Essex

Amanda Barnard age 9, born Essex

Thomas Barnard age 51, Dredgerman, not born in Essex

Name of vessel; BRITANNIA

Reg. No.25. Colchester, 15 November 1842

Tons burthen; 14 2660 3500

Master; Henry Barnard

Built; Strood, Kent

Admeasured; 23 61 94 tons

Decks; 1. Masts; 1. Length (inner part of main stem to fore part of stern aloft); 36' 6". Breadth in midships; 11' 6". Depth in hold at midships; 5' 6 tenths

Kind of vessel; Square sterned, carvel built smack, rigged with a running bowsprit, with neither galleries nor figurehead.

Subscribing owner; William Turner Barnard of East Donyland.

New Masters appointed to the BRITANNIA - 20 May 1844 Joseph Brown vice Henry Barnard.Broken up in 1849.

THE ESSEX STANDARD - Friday 21 April 1843 - “MOOT HALL, COLCHESTER, Monday, April 17.- ASSAULT - William Barnard, a mariner from East Donyland, was charged with assaulting John Green, carrier of the Eastern Counties’ Railway Company.- Mr. S. Turner appeared for complainant, and Mr. H. S. Goody for defendant.- Mr. Turner, in stating the circumstances of the case, remarked that the complainant’s situation was a very responsible one, and it was highly important that he should receive the protection of the Bench in the discharge of his duties.-   Complainant stated that he was carter for the Eastern Counties’ Railway Company, and on Saturday afternoon, the 15th inst., he took two parcels to the Prince of Wales for defendant; he told him they were to pay for; but defendant, on looking at the parcels, said they were prepaid, and that he had a letter to that effect in his pocket. Complainant told him they were not entered as paid in his book, and unless he paid the carriage he (complainant) should take them away. Defendant said he would not pay, and complainant put the parcels back into his cart, and got on to the hind part. Defendant attempted to get the parcels out of the cart, and as it was driving away he struck at complainant twice, and got hold of one of his legs and tried to pull him out of the cart. Defendant was the worse for liquor.- Cross-examined by Mr. Goody. He (complainant) demanded 1s. 6d. for the carriage of the parcels; did not afterwards ask 2s.2d.; defendant offered to pay 1s.- Robert Halls, a man in Green’s employ, corroborated his statement.- Mr. Goody, in addressing the Court for the defence, said he was not there to justify any violence to the complainant, but to impress upon the Court that it was not a greater offence to assault the carrier of the Eastern Counties’ Railway Company than any other person; and when he brought before the notice of the Court the punishment the defendant had already suffered, he thought they would consider it quite sufficient in this case. Although the complainant had received neither blemish nor scratch, a warrant was obtained, two or three policemen sent to execute it, the defendant was taken, confined in goal for the night, and the next day was paraded hand-cuffed through the streets; everybody thought that some dreadful burglary had been committed, but on asking what the man had done the reply was, “why, he has been assaulting the carrier of the Eastern Counties’ Railway!” (Laughter.) It really was the most trivial assault he had ever known brought before a bench of Magistrates; and he thought, after the punishment and degradation the defendant had suffered, the Bench, if they convicted him at all, would only inflict a penalty of the smallest coin of the realm.- The Court, after some consultation, convicted defendant in a fine of 5s., and 10s. expenses, to be paid in a week, or to be imprisoned 14 days.”

NATIONAL ARCHIVES - P.R.O. KEW. Port of Colchester - Register of Apprentices 1703 - 1844 - BT167/103

Date of Indenture; 18 November 1843

When enrolled; 17 January 1844

William Cook, age 13, for 7 years to William Turner Barnard of East Donyland

THE ESSEX STANDARD - Friday 21 July 1843 - “BOROUGH COURT (COLCHESTER CASTLE), Monday, July 17 - CHARGE OF FORGERY - William Barnard, of East Donyland, was brought up under the 1st Wm. IV., c.66, for forging an order for goods, and uttering it to Mr. Samuel Brown, coal-merchant, of this town.

Mr. F.B. Philbrick appeared for the prosecution, and Mr. Goody for the prisoner.

Mr. Brown stated that on Saturday morning the prisoner brought a note to his house, purporting to be signed by his father, Mr. Turner Barnard, of East Donyland, requesting him to let the bearer have a ton of coals. Being aware that the prisoner did not bear a very good character, he suspected all was not right; he accordingly went to the prisoner and questioned him, and ultimately refused to let him have the coals. In the course of the same day he had occasion to see the prisoner’s father upon some other business, and he then asked him if he had sent him a note or any order for coals that morning, and he stated that he had not; he then showed him the note, and Mr. Barnard said it was not his hand-writing.

Mr. Goody objected to conversation between Mr. Brown and Mr. Barnard being stated. He apprehended that if any charge of forgery could be brought against the prisoner, the father must be the prosecutor, and not Mr. Brown.

Mr. Philbrick, in reply, contended that it was not necessary in a preliminary investigation of this kind, to define the charge with that strictness which was necessary when before a jury. It would be for the Magistrates, when the circumstances had been laid before them, to say whether there was any charge against the prisoner, or what the charge might be.

Mr. Wittey (Clerk to the Bench) said the conversation referred to would not be evidence against the prisoner, though it might on the present occasion be mentioned by Mr. brown as the reason for bringing the case forward. He considered that Mr. Brown was properly the prosecutor in the case, as, had the prisoner obtained the goods, he would have been the sufferer.

Mr. Brown then continued - He told Mr. Barnard that his son had brought the note, and that he supposed it was one of his tricks. Mr. Barnard said he was very sorry for it, and asked to have the note to show his wife, who (he said) would not believe it unless she saw the note; but he, of course, refused to let him have it.

Cross-examined by Mr. Goody. He did not say that his wife might have written it; after the son was in custody the father said he had authorised his son to get a ton of coals, but he did not say so when prosecutor first mentioned the subject.

Mr. Philbrick then called Turner Barnard, the father, as a witness, but he did not answer.

Mr. Philbrick said Mr. Barnard had been bound over to appear, and as he had not done so he should apply to the Bench to have the prisoner remanded for a week, and that the father might be summoned to attend on that examination.

The prisoner was accordingly remanded till Monday, and it was intimated that a charge would then be preferred against him for obtaining a pair of trousers of Mr. Wm. Kington, tailor, of High Street, under false pretences.”

THE ESSEX STANDARD - Friday 28 July 1843 - “BOROUGH COURT (COLCHESTER CASTLE), Monday, July 24.- Before the Mayor, and H. Vint and R.M. Savill, Esqrs. CHARGE OF SWINDLING -  William Barnard, the son of a seller of fish for manure at East Donyland, was fully committed for trial upon a charge of obtaining under false pretences a pair of trousers and a waistcoat from Mr. W. Kington, tailor and draper, of the parish of St. Nicholas. The prisoner was charged with committing the offence in the month of June, 1840. From the evidence of prosecutor and his foreman, William Walker, it appeared that the prisoner went to the shop and asked to look at a pair of trousers and a waistcoat, which he agreed to purchase. He said he should not pay for them then, but would do so in a month. On being asked his name, he said it was Isaac Harris, that he worked for Mr. Thomas Harvey, ship-builder, at Wivenhoe, in whose employ he had been for three years. The prisoner being a stranger, Mr. Walker consulted the prosecutor upon giving him credit for the goods, when Mr. Kington having heard that a person answering the prisoner’s description, whose name was Barnard, had recently defrauded several tradesmen of the town of goods to a considerable amount, he asked the prisoner if his name was not Barnard instead of Harris, as he had described; to which the prisoner again said that his name was Isaac Harris, and that he worked for Mr. Harvey, as he had before stated. Upon this assurance the goods were booked to him in the name of Harris. He then wanted a coat, but Mr. Kington not having one made that would suit him, he was measured for one, and took the trousers and waistcoat away. Mr. Kington afterwards, suspecting that his customer had given him a fictitious, went to Wivenhoe, and discovered that no person of that name was in the employ of Mr. Harvey, which confirmed his suspicion of the dishonest motives of the prisoner, whom he never saw afterwards until the latter was taken into custody and brought before the Court on Thursday, the 20th inst., upon a charge of forgery, when he instantly recognised him.”

NATIONAL ARCHIVES - P.R.O. Kew - Register of Seamen's Tickets - BT113/65

No. of Register Ticket; 128,404

Name; WILLIAM BARNARD. Born at; East Donyland. In the County of; Essex, 13 November 1812

Capacity; Seaman. Height; 5ft 9½". Hair; Brown. Eyes; Blue. Complexion; Ruddy. Marks; None

First went to sea as; Cabin Boy. In the year of; 1827. Has served in the Royal Navy; No. Has been in the foreign service; No

When unemployed resides at; East Donyland

Issued at; Colchester, 17 March 1845. Age in 1845; 33

Age when ticketed; 33. Can write; Yes. No reported voyages

THE ESSEX HERALD - 11 August 1846 - “COLCHESTER CASTLE, Saturday, August 8. CHARGE OF ASSAULT - Thomas Barnard, a mariner from East Donyland, was charged with assaulting Mary Carter, an aged widow of the same place.- Mr. J.H. Church appeared for the complainant, and Mr. Goody for defendant.- From the complainant’s statement it appeared, that the assault arose from her objecting to defendant making a hole upon her ground for the purpose of erecting scaffolding. She resisted his doing so, when he struck her violently with the handle of a pickaxe he was using, and pushed her against a tree, threatening to dash her brains out.- For the defence, it was argued by Mr. Goody, that there had been an action at law between complainant and defendant’s father, respecting the ground of both premises, which adjoined each other, and the jury decided that complainant was entitled only to the ground in front of her house, but she still persisted in her claim to the ground upon which defendant was about erecting the scaffolding, which clearly did not belong to him. Therefore as the alleged assault arose out of a question of title, he submitted that the bench had no jurisdiction in the matter.- Mr. Smythies was aware that that the magistrates had no jurisdiction in a question of title; but still he did not see why, if the land did not belong to the complainant, that defendant should knock the old woman down with a pickaxe.- Mr. Goody said if it should be thought necessary, he could prove that complainant committed the first assault.- He then called John Crickmore, who stated that he was present, and saw complainant abuse defendant shamefully and strike him several times; that defendant never struck her at all, but pushed her away in defence.- The bench consequently dismissed the case.”

THE IPSWICH JOURNAL - 15 August 1846 - “The particulars of a somewhat extraordinary case of plunder committed in this town have just come to our knowledge, and, although the party implicated has, by absconding, evaded up to the present time the grasp of the law, yet we think it our duty towards the public that his conduct should be held up to merited odium. A short time since a young woman named Eliza Tann, who had been living in the service of a highly-respected family at Lexden, quitted that situation, and while seeking a new one, took up her abode at a small public-house at the bottom of North Hill. Here she had the misfortune to become acquainted with William Barnard, of Rowhedge - a name which has often appeared in our columns in connection with judicial investigations into transactions of a more than questionable character in which he has been implicated. It appears that in the first instance he represented himself to be a single man, and,  by insidious attentions, ingratiated himself into favour with the young woman, and when a few days after she discovered that this part of his story was false, he successfully allayed her suspicions by stating that he had been for some time separated from his wife. Having ascertained that her boxes had been left at her late master’s, at Lexden, he suggested a trip in a cab to fetch them, when the girl accompanied him; but Barnard called for the boxes, which he directed to “Mr. Wm. Barnard, Shoreditch Station,” and subsequently left them at the Marks Tey Station to be forwarded to London. The pair then continued their “excursion” to Kelvedon, where they lived together three or four days, the expense of which (as Barnard was most conveniently short of money, excepting, as he represented, a cheque for £15, which he was unable to get cashed in the place) had to be defrayed by the deluded girl, whose funds being more than exhausted by the demand, she was obliged to deposit some articles of apparel in discharge of the balance. Previous to this he had pretended posting his notable cheque to a friend at Rowhedge to get cashed, but this is suspected to have been a mere trick to get rid of his victim, for, instead of a remittance, his wife made her appearance at their quarters at Kelvedon, and took summary vengeance upon her rival, by nearly demolishing her bonnet and other exteriors. During the fracas Barnard, it appears, made the best of his way off, and the poor girl subsequently returned in a pitiable plight to Colchester, where she applied to Superintendent Brown, who at once took steps to apprehend the accused party; but Barnard, who was at Rowhedge at the time, having received intelligence of the approach of the policeman, decamped to some more secure locality. Since that time a letter has been received from him by Superintendent Brown, stating that the boxes were still at Shoreditch Station, and might be recovered on application; but, in reply to an inquiry made through the  station-master at the Colchester terminus, an answer has been received that there are no such boxes there. Their contents, we understand, consist chiefly in clothing to the value of several pounds, with about 30s. in money, and a savings’ bank book for a large sum, but the latter cannot of course be turned to any account, as an application at the bank for the money would subject the party to being handed over to the police.- Essex Standard.”

ESSEX HERALD – 22 September 1846 – “COLCHESTER. CASTLE, Saturday, Sep. 19.- FISH NUISANCE AT ROWHEDGE. Mr. H. Philbrick, solicitor, made the following complaint to the bench on the part of J.S. Brown, Esq. an extensive occupier at Rowhedge, East Donyland. Mr. Philbrick stated, that a very great annoyance and inconvenience was sustained by the inhabitants of Rowhedge, (which is situated by the side of the river) in consequence of two individuals named Barnard and Sycamore, who were procurers of fish for manure, allowing their fish to remain upon their Quays for days together, after the fish had been taken ashore from the fishing smacks, which, during the late protracted hot summer, created a most nauseous effluvia, highly prejudicial to the health of the inhabitants of that locality. The nuisance might easily be abated if precautionary measures were adopted, by having waggons ready to take the fish away as soon as they were landed from the vessel; the parties had often been remonstrated with, and the remedy suggested; but instead of adopting it, they continued the nuisance.

Mr. Howard recollected that the case was represented to the magistrates on a former occasion, when it appeared that the fish were laid upon private property, which took the matter out of the jurisdiction of the bench. The only legal remedy was by indictment; but the most summary process would be, to throw the fish into the river again.

Mr. Brown said, the fish were laid at some distance from the river, and it would be very hard upon private individuals to be put to the expense of removing them or indicting the parties.

The Chairman was of the opinion that some steps should be taken that would have a permanent effect, as it was evidently an intolerable nuisance. If the parties did not think proper to abate it, they must run the risk of an indictment; for it clearly appeared, as the fish were laid upon private property, the bench had no jurisdiction in the case.

Mr. Brown thanked the bench and withdrew.”

Name of vessel; CONCORD

Reg. No.23. Colchester, 18 November 1848

Tons burthen; 21 1767 3500

Master; John Barnard

When & where built; 1848 at Colchester.

Decks; 1. Masts; 1. Length; 45' 3 tenths. Breadth; 12'. Depth in hold; 6' 1tenth

Kind of vessel; Square sterned, carvel built smack, rigged with a running bowsprit, with neither galleries nor figurehead.

Subscribing owner; William Turner Barnard, of East Donyland.

Transactions subsequent to last registry:

1. Custom House Colchester - William Turner Barnard, Ship Owner, transfers all 64 shares by deed of mortgage to Philip Mosly Sainty of Fingringhoe 18 November 1848.

2. Custom House Colchester - 20 April 1852. The above mortgage is paid and satisfied as appears by endorsement on Bill of Sale 1 November 1851.

3. Custom House Colchester - 22 May 1850. William Turner Barnard, Ship Owner, transfers by Bill of Sale dated 6 May 1850 all 64 shares to George Fairhead of Colchester, by way of mortgage.

4. Custom House Colchester - 20 April 1852. The above mortgage is paid and satisfied as appears by endorsement on Bill of Sale dated 17 April 1852.

5. Custom House Colchester - 20 April 1852. William Turner Barnard, Ship Owner, transfers by Bill of Sale dated 12 January 1852 all 64 shares to George Fairhead of Colchester, by way of mortgage.

6. Custom House Colchester - 11 September 1854. By memorandum dated 9 September 1854, endorsed on Bill of Sale of smack "Concord" bearing the date 12 January 1852 from William Turner Barnard to George Fairhead, the said George Fairhead acknowledged to have received all Principal and Interest due on said security.

7. Custom House Colchester - 11 September 1854. The said William Turner Barnard has by absolute Bill of Sale dated 9 September inst transferred his sixty four parts or shares of the within described vessel to David Martin of East Donyland, Ship Owner.

THE ESSEX STANDARD - Friday 9 March 1849 - “ESSEX LENT ASSIZE - Action for Ejectment at East Donyland. DOE. DEM. WALFORD v. BARNARD. Mr. Serjeant Shee and Mr. Peacock for the plaintiff; Mr. Montague Chambers, Q.C., and Mr. Lush, for the defendant. This was an action of ejectment to recover possession of a piece of land on the banks of the Colne at East Donyland, otherwise Rowhedge, near Colchester. The subject of the action was a slip of about 21 feet wide, part of which was formerly an oyster-pit, and which the defendant had unlawfully enclosed with a wall and now formed part of his garden. The plaintiff gave evidence of his title to certain premises from the will of Mrs. Mary Tabor, who was admitted to them in 1764, through other parties till 1827, when he himself entered into possession of two-thirds as heir-in-law of his father, and one third on the surrender (by purchase) of a person named Mothersole. The main question was as to the boundary of the property on the south-side, and whether the strip enclosed by Barnard ever formed part of the property of the plaintiff. A number of witnesses were called to prove the use of the pit spoken of formerly for oysters by the plaintiff and his father, and afterwards for timber by a ship-carpenter named Harris, as alleged, by the plaintiff’s leave. In the copies of court rolls the plaintiff’s property was described as “a piece of waste ground, containing in breadth at the top thereof next the king’s highway 86 feet, and at the bottom next the channel of 100 feet, with the oyster pits thereon,” &c. The first witness as to the measurement was a person named Jenkins, clerk to Mr. Robson, the plaintiff’s attorney, who deposed that, measuring 86 feet from a spot pointed out on the plaintiff’s property, would include 86 feet within the defendant’s wall; and the 100 feet at the bottom next the river included, by estimate, rather more than that quantity. In cross-examination he said his measurement was made with an old oar 3 feet 6 long, as ascertained by a foot rule; it was a little yellow mahogany rule.- (laughter); he was not a surveyor, but had been a midshipman in the navy, when he was accustomed to the use of mathematical instruments.- Thos. Penrice, architect and surveyor, of Colchester, was also called and produced a plan; it was measured, he said, from 21 feet within the defendant’s wall, and the distance beyond that to the plaintiff’s boundary was 67 feet - 88 feet altogether; he also made the river side 88 feet besides the ditch, which was about seven feet wide. In cross-examination he said he did not know anything about 100 feet on the river side; did not try to get more than he found; his plan did not show the boundary at the defendant’s end. When re-examined by Sergeant (sic) Shee he said it was a correct drawing of the piece of land, and showed it to be wider at the bottom than at the top; he now recollected that there were 88 feet on the river side besides what was included by Barnard’s wall.- Sergeant Shee remarked that this explanation was important.- “Yes,” replied the Judge, “it shows that the plan is entirely valueless.” - For the defendant Mr. Chambers addressed the Jury at considerable length, and called witnesses to prove that the pit claimed by the plaintiff belonged to a person named Carter, the former owner of the defendant’s property, and that he used it for stacking faggots and teasles.- Mr. George Sergant, surveyor of Colchester, stated that in 1846 he was employed by Mr. Walford, the plaintiff, to make a map of his property at Donyland; the map was made and handed over to Mr. Walford.- Mr. Chambers. Now we call upon our learned friends to produce it.- Sergeant Shee. And we do not produce it.- Examination resumed. Before he measured the ground Mr. Walford showed him the copy of court rolls, to show that he was to have 86 feet next the road and 100 feet next the river; he measured the first from the end of the pit towards the north, and after getting the 86 feet there was about a foot more of Mr. Walford’s property left; he then measured the bottom next the river for the 100 feet, starting from a spot pointed out by Mr. Walford, and at the end of that quantity a stake was driven down. Witness asked Mr. Walford if he was satisfied with it; and he replied “Yes, if he had got his hundred feet.” Barnard, who was present, said he was not nice to a foot or two. Walford made no particular reply, except that the plan was to be made so; he had seen the premises since Barnard’s wall was built; the stake driven next the river at the time the plan was made was still standing, and also the one at the Rowhedge end; the wall was built on Barnard’s side of the stake; the plan now produced was from the rough drawing he made when engaged for Mr. Walford.- After a very short cross-examination a waller was called to speak to the filling up of the pit for Barnard, and the defendant’s case closed.- Mr. Sergeant Shee replied upon the whole case in a powerful speech, and left the case to the Jury in the confident hope that they would find a verdict for the plaintiff.- His Lordship, in summing up, remarked that the land in dispute was a space of only 21 feet; and one could not but deeply regret that so much time had been occupied, and he feared so much expense incurred, by these parties in a contest for a piece of ground, that seemed, from the description, worth but a very small portion of what had been laid out upon it. After going through and commenting upon the facts in a very lucid and elaborate manner, he said the question for them was, considering the conduct of the plaintiff at the time of the measurement, and considering that he had now as much or more land than he was entitled to under the court rolls, whether they considered this pit, or trench, or whatever it was, belonged to the plaintiff. Possibly it might not belong to either; the defendant, certainly, had shown no title to it, but that was not the question here; the plaintiff was bound to make out his own case, and if they believed that he had not done so, their verdict would be for the defendant.- The Jury consulted for about ten minutes in the box, and were then locked up; after an absence of two hours, they returned into Court with a verdict for the defendant.- The case lasted about seven hours.”

Name of vessel; BETSY

Reg. No.9. Colchester 19 June 1848

Tons burthen; 17 2592 3500

Master; John Barnard

When & where built; 1793, East Donyland

Decks; 1. Masts; 1. Length (as above); 38' 9 tenths. Breadth in midships; 12' 9 tenths. Depth in hold at midships; 5' 6 tenths

Kind of vessel; Square sterned, carvel built smack, rigged with a running bowsprit, with neither galleries nor figurehead.

Subscribing owner; William Turner Barnard of East Donyland.

Notes; William Turner Barnard, Fish Merchant, has transferred by Bill of Sale dated 4 August 1848, sixty four sixty fourths of the within described vessel to William Godden of Gillingham, Kent, smack owner. Reg de Novo at Rochester.


THE ESSEX STANDARD - 25 May 1849 - “COLCHESTER CASTLE, May 19. ASSAULT.- Thomas Barnard, mariner, of Rowhedge, was charged with assaulting James Goodwin, a boy, of the same place, on Thursday, the 10th inst., by striking him with a stick.- Mr. Barnes appeared for the complainant; Mr. Goody for the defendant.- Complainant stated that on the evening of Thursday, the 10th last, about six o’clock, he was standing near the Lion public-house, at Rowhedge, when he saw Barnard coming up the street drunk and creating a great deal of alarm by his violent conduct; complainant was first struck by him across the thigh, and afterwards, upon threatening to return the compliment with a brick bat, defendant treated him so violently that he was obliged to obtain medical advice, and was unable to work for a week; he declared that he neither said or did anything to provoke the defendant.- Mr. Goody, after a few questions to the defendant, said he would not carry the case any further, as his client was willing to pay £2 and the Court fees.- Mr. Barnes said he would consent to such a compromise as would give the boy a sovereign clear for himself; but out of this £2 there would be a doctor’s bill, the boy’s loss of time, and his keep for a week.- Ultimately an arrangement was come to for the payment of £1 and all the expenses.- The Bench expressed an opinion that it would be better if these cases generally could be settled out of Court, as it would then give the complainant an opportunity of getting compensation, which the Magistrates had no power to allow.

Another information charged the same defendant with an assault upon Henry Cook on the same day.- Complainant and a witness having given evidence, Mr. Goody addressed the Court for the defendant, and called John Ennew, who stated that on Thursday, the 10th inst., he was in the back-parlour at the Lion, when words arose between the parties; after which Cook got up and told defendant that he was never better qualified for him, standing at the time with his fists clenched; Barnard then rose from his seat to defend himself; heard Cook say if he struck him he would make him pay for it,- By Mr. Barnes. Witness was at the Lion while they were tossing for a tun of porter; there was one pailful brought in - (laughter) - had nothing to do with it except helping to drink it - (renewed laughter) - the table at which we were sitting was about three feet and half long, and Cook and Barnard were about five feet apart.- A man named James Cook was called, but appeared to know nothing of the case.- The Bench convicted the defendant in a penalty of 20s., with 18s. expenses.”

THE ESSEX STANDARD - Friday 10 August 1849 - William King of Colchester sued four men for outstanding debts for clothing. He was successful in all cases.... “and in the case of Jno. Barnard, mariner, of East Donyland, sued for £3.13.6, a similar order was made.” Money to be paid in monthly instalments of 10s.


1850 East Donyland. William Barnard - Fish, Manure Dealer.

THE ESSEX STANDARD - Friday  18 October 1850 - “On Wednesday morning last the appearance of two men at Rowhedge, with pick-axes, &c., who commenced the demolition of a wall belonging to Mr. Barnard, caused a considerable commotion amongst the neighbours. It appears that the affair originated out of an action tried at the last assizes for this county, in which Mr. Barnard was defendant, and a Mrs. Carter the plaintiff, the action being decided in favour of the defendant, which so aggravated the plaintiff that she took advantage of Mr. Barnard’s absence from home, and employed two men, named Henry Wilkinson and Wm. Dyer, to demolish the wall named. They accordingly commenced operations, and the remonstrances of Mrs. Barnard being insufficient to induce them to desist, she went for the parish constable, who shortly arrived with some assistance, when they were taken into custody. The same morning they were brought before George Round, Esq., at the County Magistrates’ Office, and discharged, the Magistrates being of opinion that Mrs. Carter was the party who ought to have been proceeded against.”


1851 CENSUS - EAST DONYLAND - East Donyland Street. Sunday 30 March 1851.

William Turner Barnard age 63, Head, Married, Fisherman, Born Bures, Suffolk

Sophia Barnard age 63, Wife, Married, Born East Donyland, Essex

Harriett Barnard age 20, Daughter, Unmarried, Needlewoman, Born East Donyland, Essex

Mary Ann Barnard age 12, G. dau, Born East Donyland, Essex

William Ashley age 10, Grandson, Born East Donyland, Essex

Sarah Ashley age 8 G. dau, Born East Donyland, Essex


1859 East Donyland. William Turner Barnard - Carrier to Colchester.

THE ESSEX STANDARD - Friday 25 November 1859 - “Nov.24. At the County Magistrates’ Clerk’s Office, on Monday (before W.R. Havens, Esq.), Thos. Barnard, smack owner, of Donyland, was charged with threatening the life of his wife, and was remanded till to-morrow (Saturday); his own recognizances being taken for his appearance.”


THE ESSEX STANDARD - Friday 2 December 1859 - “COUNTY MAGISTRATES’ SITTING - Nov. 26. THREATENING TO KILL A WIFE - Thomas Barnard, smack-owner, of Donyland, was charged with threatening to kill his wife. Mr. Philbrick (in the absence of Mr. Goody) appeared for the plaintiff; Mr. Jones for the defendant. Mary, wife of the defendant, said she had been married to him 20 years, and had nine children living [“….but have had more”]. On Thursday, the 17th inst., her husband, having been drinking several days, went in at breakfast time and said he was going to Colchester; she told him she should go too, and he asked for his check book [….he has an account at Messrs. Round, Green, and Co’s”], which she gave him. The previous night he had given her £6. to keep for him, which she put in a box in her bed-room, and on going to the box between 8 and 10 o’clock the money was gone. She told him he had taken all the money out of the house, which he denied, and said she had made it away, as she had before. Witness told him she should go and make some money out of some [onions?]. On the road to Colchester the defendant went into the White Lion for some porter, and an altercation took place regarding the money. He left her there, and she came to Colchester in the afternoon to look for him, but could not find him. Not finding him, she went home to her mother’s at Rowhedge, about a quarter of a mile from her own house, and then to her sister’s to have her tea. Her baby had been during the day at her sister’s, and she also remained there till about 10 o’clock, when she heard some one go into her own the adjoining house. On going into the house she discovered her husband sitting before the fire asleep. She returned to her sister’s for the baby, and while there she heard a great knocking and shouting. She heard her children shrieking. “Oh! pray father, don’t,” and she immediately ran back to her own house, and met her husband at the door, and asked him what he was doing; and in lifting up his hands to strike her, said, “ --- you, I will kill you.” She ran away, he following her; but she hid up in a garden, and he did not find her. On seeing him return to his house she went to her mother’s where she slept all night. She had for some time been subject to cruelty from her husband, and on one occasion he had cut her face with a poker, the scar of which she exhibited. Defendant was very violent when intoxicated, and she went in fear of her life. The defendant again came to Colchester on Tuesday,  and she came in search of him and gave information to the police. - Cross-examined. Did not take the £6, or any part of the money, nor had ever made away with any of his money. Defendant had before complained of having missed money. Did not say in the White Lion that she would poison him, and that she would break him up in a fortnight; did say that she could not live with him, [She did not put herself in such a violent passion that the perspiration ran down her face and blood flew from her nose], and did not behave herself in a violent manner while in the house. She broke the windows the week before, but that was because he turned her out, and fastened the window up; might have said if it wasn’t for Jack, one of her children, she would blow his brains out, but she had no gun; [It was her eldest son, aged 20, who called out “Oh, pray father, don’t.” He was not here, for she would not bring her child against his father. She never ill-used her husband; never gave him two black eyes; never struck him to hurt him; if she had done so it was when he was ill-using her.]; Had one night flung a ginger-beer bottle at his head.- Mr. Jones submitted that the complainant had no valid cause of complaint against her husband; that the proceedings were taken from a malicious feeling and bad motive on her part; and also that the wife should be bound over to keep the peace towards her husband. He called Mr. Robert Pitt, a shipowner, who said he was in the White Lion when defendant and his wife were there. Mrs. Barnard had some brandy and water, and on some porter being brought for the defendant she snatched it away, and said rather than live with him she would poison him and break him up. Her conduct was very passionate and she used oaths [swearing and abusing her husband]. The defendant’s conduct was very quiet, and he was sober.- Mr. Jones was about to call another witness to speak to the same conversation, but the Bench thought it did not affect the real merits of the case.- The Bench ordered the defendant to enter himself in a surety of £20, and two sureties of £10 each, to keep the peace for six months.- The defendant, on hearing the sentence, said, addressing the Chairman, “Well, Sir, I’d rather be parted to-day.” (Laughter.)” [Sureties were Mr. Thomas Humphry, Colchester, and Mr. Turner Barnard, defendant’s father]

Additions are from SUFFOLK AND ESSEX FREE PRESS – 10 December 1859

THE ESSEX STANDARD - Wednesday 21 March 1860 - “COUNTY MAGISTRATES’ SITTING - March 17. BRUTAL ASSAULT BY A MARINER - Benjamin James, a respectable young mariner, was charged with feloniously and maliciously cutting and wounding Thomas Barnard, also a mariner, with intent to do him some grievous bodily harm, at East Donyland, on the 27th February.

Mr. Church appeared for the prosecution; Mr. Jones for the prisoner.

Thomas Barnard, the prosecutor, said - I am a mariner, residing at East Donyland. On Monday, the 27th of February, I went to Colchester, and returned in the evening, leaving my wife at Colchester with some of her family. (The parties had been to the Colne Fishery Licensing Dinner at Colchester.)After I had been home about half-an-hour I heard a cab stop at my wife’s father’s, Mr. Daniel James, where the prisoner also lives; and I went to the house to inquire for my wife. On going to James’s door I asked if my wife was there, and she answered that she was, and would come directly, and asked me to take a box. Her father came to the door to me and said, “Get off my premises, you --- scamp.” I made no reply, and he gave me a push, and the prisoner gave me another; the prisoner then went further into the house, and on coming back he struck me a violent blow to the head with a poker, which he held in both hands. I became insensible and fell down. On recovering I found myself lying on the sofa in my own house, and I was attended by Mr. Squires, surgeon, of Wivenhoe, under whose care I have been ever since. I also received a wound to my lip, which necessitated it being sewn up, and several wounds on my body. From the treatment I received I am now suffering from giddiness and weakness. No quarrel had taken place on that day between me and the prisoner; and in the morning of the same day I had shaken hands with the prisoner when going into the Swan, at Colchester.

Cross-examined. I had been a little drunk that day, but was sober when I went to the prisoner’s house.

Mr. Jones was proceeding to cross-examine the witness as to the occurrence which took place at the Swan during the day; but Mr. Church objected, as being disconnected from this occurrence in the evening.

The Chairman said the Bench were not going to try the case, but only to see if there was sufficient evidence to warrant them in sending the case to a higher tribunal.

Mr. Jones said his object was to divest the case of its felonious character, and to show a justification on the part of the prisoner.

The Bench decided that anything occurring prior to the time of the occurrence in question was unnecessary for the present inquiry.

Cross-examination continued. Stopped at the Old Heath Bell and had a pint of porter, but did not say to Robert james that I was mad drunk and did not know what I was doing; did not see the prisoner bring the box to the door; did not take hold of Mr. James and say I would go in; did not hear him say that I might go there when I was sober, and I did not say I would go when I liked; do not remember William James taking hold of me to prevent my going in.

Re-examined. Was not drunk when I went to the defendant’s house; I walked home from the Old Heath Bell.

John Gobey, a cabman, in the employ of Mr. Salter, of the Cups, at Colchester, said on the night in question he drove a party, including the prosecutor’s wife, to the prisoner’s father’s at East Donyland. On arriving there they all went into the house and witness also, a man named Allen taking charge of the cab. While witness was in the house the prosecutor came to the door and asked for his wife. She said “I am coming directly,” and he said, “Come now; I want you and the children, too.” Mr. James, the wife’s father, put his hand on Barnard’s shoulder and said, “Don’t come here to insult me or my friends.” The prosecutor said, “I want my wife; she is here, isn’t she?” His wife again said she would come directly; and the father said to the prosecutor, “Get off my premises at once,” and pushed him back. The prisoner also went to the door and pushed him back, and coming back to the fire-place took up the poker and went out of the room in a rage, and said to the prosecutor “You --- rascal, I’ll do for you,” and struck him several times with the poker. The prosecutor fell down, and the prisoner returned to the fire-place, but again went out, the prosecutor having got up and goner to the gate, and again knocked him down, repeating the words he had before used. The prisoner returned to the room and again went out and struck the prosecutor several times as he laid groaning on the ground. The blows were struck with great violence, as if intended to kill the prosecutor. Witness Allen and the prosecutor’s wife then lifted him up, and found that he had received two cuts on the forehead and another on his upper lip. While witness was holding the prosecutor up, he said, “Father , what have I done to be used like this?” The father replied, “If you had come like a man you would not have been.” Prosecutor had not previously given the prisoner or his father any provocation.

Cross-examined. Should say that the assault arose from spite; did not hear anything said about a box; took some small parcels into the house from the cab; did not remember hearing the father say that the prosecutor should not come to his house drunk, nor the prosecutor that the premises were not James’s; the prosecutor did not swear or use any ill language; prosecutor did not set his foot over the threshold, nor attempt to get into the house; did not see prosecutor seize the father by his coat; prosecutor appeared quite sober, and spoke as a sober man.

By the Bench. The poker was of the usual [sort/type?]

John Seaborn, dredgerman, of East Donyland, and William Allen, two of the party driven in the cab, gave corroborative evidence.

Wm. Cheek, a shipwright, said on the evening in question, about 8 o’clock, he saw the prisoner, who said to him “Barnard has hit my brother Bill in the mouth.”-

Mr. Jones submitted that the evidence was not sufficiently relative to the case.

The Magistrates’ Clerk said it was very near the time of the assault.

Mr. Jones said it was nearer than that which the Bench had previously rejected, but it showed the inconvenience to him of the Bench not allowing him to go into evidence of matters that occurred during the day. He exceedingly regretted that a gentleman holding a commission of the peace (alluding to Mr. Havens) should so identify himself with the prosecution as it was evident he was doing.

Witness continued the evidence. The prisoner added, “I will give the ---- (referring to the prosecutor) something if I happen with him.”

Police-constable Bond proved apprehending the prisoner on board a smack in the river Colne, when the prisoner said, “If I have to pay for this I will pay him;” and added “If I had been further down the river you would not have taken me without a water-bailiff; if you had you would have had to put up with what would have occurred.”

Cross-examined. Did not threaten to handcuff a child on board another vessel.

Mr. Church informed the Bench that he was not, in consequence of a mistake, prepared with medical evidence to-day; and the magistrates therefore adjourned the case till Monday.

Mr. W. R. Havens said he wished to make an observation relative to this case. The prosecutor Barnard was, as they might be aware, under recognizances to keep the peace, and he had informed him that he had been threatened with the forfeiture of them if he proceeded with this charge. He (Mr. Havens) had told him not to regard it.

Mr. Jones said he must protest against the observations which had fallen from the worthy Magistrate. There was no proof by whom the threat had been made use of, and unless it was proved to have emanated from his client it ought not to have been mentioned, because it would only prejudice the minds of the Magistrates, and it compelled him to repeat that it was to be regretted that one of the Magistrates should take so warm an interest in the prosecution.

Mr. Church remarked that if he had been aware of the circumstances he should have mentioned it. With regard to the observation made by Mr. Jones, he could not say he had seen Mr. Havens do more than any one else would have done, occurring as the case did in his own parish, and with a view of discharging his duty faithfully.

The Chairman said the Bench quite agreed with him that they allowed great latitude, perhaps too much, to gentlemen of the legal profession, because in a preliminary inquiry it was entirely in the hands of the Bench to decide what evidence should be brought out; and unless they were allowed sufficient latitude to decide as to what they should hear they should never get through the case at all.

Mr. Havens asked if he understood that Mr. Jones wished to have these threats proved?

Mr. Jones. I say it is impossible to prove them. Whatever my client’s friends may say behind his back cannot be received as evidence against him, and is repugnant to the first principles of law and justice.

Mr. Havens said his observation was not in reference to this case, but supposing that an application should be made to the Quarter Session to forfeit the prosecutor’s recognizances, this fact would be very important.

A summons had been taken out by the prisoner against the prosecutor for an assault alleged to have been committed at Colchester during the day in question, but was withdrawn.”



“Monday, March 19th. The prisoner Benjamin James was again brought up on the charge of maliciously cutting and wounding Thomas Barnard, at Rowhedge, on the 27th February.- Mr. Church appeared for the prosecution; Mr. Jones for the defence,- Mr. S. N. Squires, the partner of Mr. P. Havens, surgeon of Wivenhoe, said he was sent for about twelve o’clock on the night in question to attend the prosecutor, whom he found bleeding from a severe scalp wound, and another on his lip. The scalp wound was about two inches long. He was sensible, and not much exhausted from the loss of blood. Witness sewed up the lip, and dressed his wounds, and had not since seen him. Mr. Havens having afterwards attended him. - By the Bench - The wounds appeared as if caused by some blunt instrument, such as a poker. Witness could not on examination detect any injury to the bone.- By Mr. Church. The blows on the head might have proved fatal if (unreadable ery---pe---is) or inflammation had taken place. He could not say whether the prosecutor was yet out of danger; disease of the brain might occur even a month or two after a blow; to all appearance he was out of danger.- Cross-examined. Eryalpelis ------ sometimes followed a slight wound but was not of so likely an occurrence as after a serious wound. A violent blow would not always cause a fracture. In some persons the skull would not yield to a blow even when violent. Inflammation would be more likely to supervene where a man had been afflicted by delirium tremens, or was addicted to drinking.- Mr. Church said he had a witness to speak to a threat made use of by the prisoner against the prosecutor when he came from sea, about three months since; but the Bench thought as they had evidence already of that kind, and on the same evening as the occurrence, it was unnecessary.- The Chairman then cautioned the prisoner in the usual way and he reserved his defence, and was committed for trial on the charge to the next Assize.- Mr. Jones applied that the prisoner might be admitted to bail. He was prepared with witnesses to speak to the assault, but, feeling that the case must be disposed of elsewhere, he had declined calling them. He might mention that the prisoner would have to remain in gaol three or four months unless allowed bail.- Mr. Church opposed the application on the ground that the prosecutor did not feel himself safe while the prisoner was at liberty.- The Chairman, after consulting with his brother Magistrate, during which the room was cleared, said they had taken the matter into their serious consideration, for a very serious matter it was. Mr. Havens concurred with him that they could not with propriety allow the prisoner bail, and therefore he must stand committed to prison. At the same time they were glad to know that an application could be made to a Judge at Chambers, who could, if he thought proper, allow him bail.- Mr. Jones supposed, after the observations which had fallen from the Bench, they would not think him contumacious in taking the step which the Chairman had mentioned.- The Chairman. Certainly not;  they were very glad that there was such a Court of Appeal.”

THE ESSEX STANDARD - Friday 20 July 1860 - “ESSEX SUMMER ASSIZE.... The criminal business of the Assize continued on Tuesday morning, before the Right Hon. Chief-Justice Sir Alexander Cockburn... Cutting and Wounding at East Donyland. Benjamin James, 23, sailor (on bail), was indicted for feloniously assaulting, cutting and wounding, Thomas Barnard, with intent to do him some grievous bodily harm, at East Donyland, on the 27th February.

Mr. Croome prosecuted; Mr. Pearce defended the prisoner.

Mr. Croome applied to his Lordship that the case might be allowed to be withdrawn. It arose out of family quarrels, and the prosecutor was anxious that harmony should be promoted. The prisoner, he might inform his Lordship, had been four months in gaol awaiting his trial.

His Lordship declined to assent, and the case therefore proceeded.

The prosecutor said - On the 27th February I went to Colchester, and returned to Donyland, my home, about nine o’clock in the evening. After being at home sometime I heard a cab drive up to my father-in-law’s door, and I went to see if my wife was in it. I found she was, and I went to the door of the house and called out “Mary.” She answered, “I am coming directly, Tom, take hold of this box.” Her father then came up to me and pushed me, telling me to get off his premises, and the prisoner came to me and struck me with a poker. I then became insensible, and on recovering found myself on the sofa at my own house. I was attended by a surgeon for some time.

Cross-examined. I signed a consent to the prisoner being liberated on bail; the day in question was the Oyster Licensing day, and was rather a merry one; had been drunk during the day, but had got over it when I went to my father-in-law’s house, and did not then fall down in the garden; the prisoner’s father did not say to me, “Tom, come when you are sober.”

The cross-examination was proceeding, when his Lordship said he thought, perhaps, it would be better to adopt the learned counsel’s suggestion, and allow the case to be compromised.

The Jury were then directed to find the prisoner guilty of unlawful wounding, and the prisoner was bound over to keep the peace for 6 months.

Mr. Pearce said this course would lend very much to the promotion of a better feeling not only amongst the prosecutor and prisoner in this case, but also amongst other members of the family. He might mention that he had a certificate of the prisoner’s good character signed by the Rector, churchwardens, overseers, and the principal parishioners of East Donyland, where the prisoner resided.

The prisoner was then discharged.”

THE ESSEX STANDARD - 3 February 1860 - “At the County Magistrates’ Clerk’s Office, yesterday (Thursday), Thomas Barnard, mariner, of Rowhedge, was charged (before W. E. Havens, Esq.) with ill-treating his wife.- The defendant, it will be remembered, was bound over a short time since for the same offence, and he was now ordered to enter into recognizances, himself in £40, and to find one surety in £20, to keep the peace for 12 months.”

THE ESSEX STANDARD - 29 March 1861 - “At the County Magistrates’ Clerk’s Office, on Tuesday, Thomas Barnard, mariner, of East Donyland, appeared before W. E. Havens, Esq., to charge his wife with threatening to kill him, and to pray that she might provide sureties of the peace.- A fortnight ago, it will be remembered, the husband was bound over in sureties to keep the peace towards his wife, and the long catalogue of the miseries of their married life was disclosed; but it now appears that both parties are equally to blame; and the woman provided recognizances to appear at the Magistrates sitting on Saturday.”

THE ESSEX STANDARD - 6 November 1861 - “COUNTY MAGISTRATES’ SITTING - Nov. 2. ALLEGED ASSAULT - Thomas Barnard, of Rowhedge, was summoned for assaulting Mr. Philip Sainty, ship-owner, of the same place, on Thursday last.- Mr. Philbrick appeared for the plaintiff; Mr. Goody for the defendant.- The defendant was so excited and noisy at the commencement of the sitting that the police were obliged to take him out of the Court and lock him up.- Mr. Philbrick stated that there was a road near the plaintiff’s house, to which the defendant a claimed right of way. Mr. Sainty had placed a piece of timber suspended by a rope a considerable height above the ground, so that there was plenty of room to pass. On the day in question the defendant asked plaintiff to remove the timber, which he declined to do. Defendant then got a saw to cut the rope, and afterwards went to the plaintiff’s house and committed the assault complained of.- A question arose as to whether the Bench could deal with the assault, as it seemed to involve a question of title; and after a long conversation the Bench decided that they had no jurisdiction.”

1861 CENSUS - EAST DONYLAND. Sunday 7 April 1861.

Martha Murrells Head, Wid, age 70, Shopkeeper, Born East Donyland, Essex

William Barnard Son in law, Married, age 73, Born Bures, Suffolk

Matilda Barnard Dau, Married, age 48, Born East Donyland, Essex

ESSEX HERALD – Tuesday 24 August 1869. “COLNE REGATTA AND SPORTS. The now annual Colne Regatta took place on Wednesday last off Mersea Stone. There was a large concourse of people present… Match for first-class fishing vessels of from 30 to 50 tons, O.M. belonging to any port… The course was a long and circuitous one not easily explained on paper, and the vessels went twice round. The start was at 11.46, and the first round was thus completed:- Blue Bell, 31 tons, John Spitty, Rowhedge, 3h.36m.4s.; Affiance, 33 tons, James Major, Brightlingsea, 3h.40m.15s.; Welcome, 36 tons, John Goddard, Brightlingsea, 3h.40m.15s.; Volunteer, 37 tons, A.A. Watts, Harwich, 3h.41m.58s.; Pride, 36 tons, John Girling, Brightlingsea, 3h.42m.32s.

The Energy (31 tons, Geo. Steward, Brightlingsea) was not timed. With a decreasing wind the vessels were very late in coming in, which they did in this order.- 1. Blue Bell, £15., 7h.34m.22s.; Volunteer, £7.10., 8h.3m.24s.; Affiance, £3.15., 8h. 10m.38s.

A four-oared smack’s race was won by the Vestal, Mr. Lewes, of Brightlingsea; the second being the Thomas and Mary, Thos. Barnard, of Rowhedge; and the third the Choice, E. Eagle, of Brightlingsea.

The Thomas and Mary won the two-oared boat race, the Elizabeth being 2nd, the Fame 3rd.”

1871 CENSUS - EAST DONYLAND - Chapel Street. Sunday 2 April 1871.

William T. Barnard Head, Married, age 85, Fisherman later Manure, Born Bures, Suffolk

Matilda Barnard Wife, Married, age 58, Born East Donyland, Essex

Martha Murrells M in law, Wid, age 81, Born East Donyland, Essex

Alfred Southgate Nephew, age 9, Born East Donyland, Essex

Eva Stiles Nurse, age 16, Attendant, Born East Donyland, Essex

PRINCIPAL REGISTRY - Family Division Probate Search Room, 42-49 High Holborn, London

PROBATE 1872. Folio 740. BARNARD, WILLIAM TURNER - Effects under £200. 7 December 1872.

The Will of William Turner BARNARD late of East Donyland in the County of Essex, Fisherman, who died 20 October 1872 at East Donyland, was proved at the Principal Registry by Samuel Willett of East Donyland, Coal Merchant, the surviving Executor.


WILL. I WILLIAM TURNER BARNARD of East Donyland in the County of Essex, Fisherman, hereby revoke all former Wills and other Testamentary Dispositions and declare this only to be my last Will and Testament.

Whereas by an Indenture dated the twenty fourth day of December one thousand eight hundred and fifty eight and made between myself the said William Turner Barnard of the first part, my present wife Matilda Elizabeth Barnard, then Matilda Elizabeth Murrells, Spinster, of the second part, and Jeremiah Easter and John Brown of the third part, being a settlement made previous to my marriage with my said wife.

A certain piece of land or ground called Gravel Pit Field with ten Messuages or Tenements erected thereon. And also another piece of land or ground near or adjoining the same all being leasehold hereditaments situate in East Donyland aforesaid and Also for the residue of a term of five hundred years and in the said Indenture particularly described were together with the appurtenances assigned unto the said Jeremiah Easter and John Brown their executors administrators and assigns subject to certain encumbrances then affecting the same Upon trust to pay the rents and profits thereof to myself for life and after my decease to my said wife for her life for her separate use and after her decease subject to the Trusts aforesaid upon trust for myself the said William Turner Barnard my executors administrators and assigns.

Now I hereby bequeath the said hereditaments and premises after the decease of my said wife and subject to the mortgage affecting the same unto my friends Samuel Willett of East Donyland aforesaid Coal Merchant and David Martin of the same place Shipowner, their executors administrators and assigns upon trust as soon as conveniently may be after the decease of my said wife to sell the same in manner hereinafter mentioned and either subject to or discharged from the said mortgage.

And as to the monies to arise from such sale or in case the said mortgage shall be discharged on such sale as to so much of the said monies as shall be received by the said Trustees or Trustee after satisfaction of the said mortgage I direct that they or he shall stand possessed thereof after paying thereout the expenses attending such sale upon trust for all my children who shall be living at the decease of my said wife and the issue then living of such of my children as have already died or may thereafter die in my lifetime or in the lifetime of my said wife in equal shares so that the issue of any deceased child shall take equally between them if more than one the share only which his her or their deceased parent would have taken if living.

And as to all the leasehold hereditaments and premises hereinbefore respectively devised and bequeathed in trust for sale I declare that the same respectively may be sold either together or in lots and either by public auction or private contract and either with or without special conditions with full power for the Trustees or Trustee to buy in the same or any part thereof at any such auction or auctions and to rescind or vary any contract or contracts for sale and to resell the same from time to time without being answerable for any loss occasioned thereby And for the purposes aforesaid to do enter into and execute all such acts contracts and assurances as they or he shall think proper.

And as to all the residue of my personal estate the money in the bank and all personal property I bequeath the same unto the said Samuel Willett and David Martin their executors administrators and assigns upon trust after payment thereout of all my just debts funeral expenses and testamentary expenses to pay the legacies.

I bequeath the sum of Ten Pounds and all my household goods and indoor effects except my wearing apparel to my said wife Matilda Elizabeth Barnard.

I bequeath all my wearing apparel and watch to Charles John Rayner the natural son of my daughter Amanda Dove.

I bequeath the sum of Four Pounds and my gold handkerchief pin marked TB to my son Thomas Barnard.

I bequeath the sum of Four Pounds to my daughter Sarah Smith the wife of George Smith.

I bequeath the sum of Four Pounds to my daughter Mary Ann Ennew the wife of Thomas Ennew.

I bequeath the sum of Four Pounds to my daughter Elizabeth Barton the wife of Benjamin Barton.

I bequeath the sum of Four Pounds to my daughter Eliza Sebborn the wife of Farrow Sebborn.

I bequeath the sum of Four Pounds to my daughter Harriet Pearson the wife of Thomas Pearson.

I bequeath the sum of Four Pounds to my daughter Amanda Dove the wife of Benjamin Dove.

I bequeath the sum of Two Pounds to Eliza Page and the sum of Two Pounds equally divided between the children of my deceased son Henry Barnard.

And I declare that the provision made for my said wife by my said marriage settlement shall be in bar of her bower or free bench in or out of any part of my real estate and I appoint the said Samuel Willett and David Martin executors of this my said Will.

And I declare that the receipts or receipt in writing of the Trustees or Trustee for the time being acting in the execution of the trusts of this my Will for any money to arise or to be received from any sale under the trusts or provisions hereinbefore contained or otherwise payable to them or him by virtue of this my Will shall effectively discharge the person or persons paying the same from all liability as to the application thereof and from being in anywise bound to enquire into the property or any such sale.

And I further declare that it shall be lawful for the trustees or trustee for the time being out of the monies which shall come to their or his hands by virtue of this my Will to reimburse themselves or himself all costs and expenses which they or he may pay or sustain in or about the execution of the trusts hereof or in relation thereto.

In witness whereof I the said William Turner Barnard the Testator have to this my last Will and Testament set my hand and signature this twenty third day of January one thousand eight hundred and seventy two - WILLIAM TURNER BARNARD - Signed by the said William Turner Barnard the Testator in the presence of us who in his presence and the presence of each other have hereunto subscribed our names as witnesses.

Daniel Potter, East Donyland

William Candler, Wivenhoe

Proved at London 7th December 1872 by the oath of Samuel Willett the surviving Executor to whom Admon was granted.

THE HALFPENNY NEWSMAN – 1 November 1879. “DEATHS. 17th October, at East Donyland, Mary Ann Barnard, 26.”

ESSEX STANDARD - Saturday 5 February 1881 - THE WRECK OF THE NEW UNITY OF ROWHEDGE - OLD TOM BARNARD INTERVIEWED - “Ah, Sir, you may well say we have had some weather. Fifty-five years, man and boy, have I been to sea, and, as you know, I was never one of the very timid sort, for you have been with me when it has blowed a bit, but never in my life did I see such a night as that Monday night before that Tuesday.

“We were laying in Colne water, and finding the floating ice was likely to injure the vessel’s bottom, we resolved to put to sea, and after crossing the Wallet, we brought up under the Buxey and reefed our sails, and made all snug for the rough night we saw coming. Just as we were going below to get some tea, we saw a schooner go ashore on the Whitaker Spit; so tea had to wait, and we got under way as quickly as possible to go to her assistance; but the gale kept increasing so that it was quite impossible to board her, the daylight being gone, and, as the best we could do all things considered, we brought up as near to her as we could, and let go our anchor with 55 or 60 fathoms of chain cable out, hoping to be able to assist her at daybreak.

“All night the gale kept increasing, and at 9.30 a.m. our cable parted, and our stowboat anchor, with 50 fathoms of chain, was lost. As soon as we got the remainder of the cable in, we made the Shears Light, and shaped a course for Sheerness.

“Within ten minutes every stitch of canvas we had set was blown into ribbons, and we drove before the blast in such a snow storm that we could not see the end of the bowsprit, and we had to get under the lee of the boat or the mast or anything we could hold on, for to stand on deck was an impossibility, and had you attempted to get on your legs, it would be at the risk of being blown overboard like an old swab, for our foresail, a brand new one, was blown clean away from everything, and as long as we could see it, it never did touch the water. It did blow then. After that, though we could not see 20 fathoms ahead, we made the Mouse Light, and then we knew we were on the right course for Sheerness. After this we kept feeling our way with the lead as opportunity offered, and could find we were going right away up the Medway. I was for’ard holding on for dear life, and the wind enabled me to hear my son at the helm ask me if he was steering a right course. I said, keep her straight, for no sand is in our way. The New Unity could sail as well as most of them, and  knew if we did not run into an ironclad or some other obstacle we should ultimately run into the mud on the banks of the Medway, and escape with little further damage.

“But so it was not to be, and bang we went on the Grain Spit, perhaps the first instance of one of the strongest forts in the world being boarded by a fishing smack; but so it turned out, for as the wind blew we found, fortunately for our lives, that we had run almost high and dry on Grain Island, close under the lee of the Fort, and, as Providence directed, just at the state of the tide that gave us a chance for our lives. Perhaps we might, if we could have seen our way, have gibed the vessel, and so escape the Spit, but we had the boat on deck, and as everything was jammed hard and fast, had we have done so the boat would have been swept clean off deck, so we felt we would not part with our last chance, for the boat then seemed our only hope.

“Quicker than I can tell you, our vessel was then blown right up against the outworks of the Fort, and again providentially she struck with her forepart on the top of the outwork, and this in all probability saved our lives, for my son at once took off his boots and socks, and walked along the bowsprit, which he could not have done had we not went on the weather side of the Fort, for under other circumstances he would have been blown off like a butterfly. A line was then passed, and by crawling along the bowsprit all hands were fortunately saved, and we found ourselves on Grain Island, with no one to welcome us, and our only alternative was to see our vessel dashed to pieces.

“I have seen some strange scenes in my time, for I am an old Swin Ranger, but never in my life did I feel as I did when I saw the dear old craft, the pride of my life, in which so much good work had been done, come broadside on the fort, and crack up like an old cheese box. Not that she was not in good order, for as we watched her break up, and I don’t mind telling you I could not help shedding a tear when I saw the old craft, in which by God’s help I had been instrumental in saving hundreds of persons’ lives, tossed about like an old broken match box; but in all this I had the satisfaction of observing, as she went to pieces, that she was as sound as ever a vessel of her class was.

“All this time the occupants of the Fort knew nothing of our misfortune, so we went to the gate, told them our trouble, and they rendered us all the assistance in their power, and we reached Sheerness with scarcely a rag on us, thankful that our lives were saved, and ultimately reached Colchester by the aid of that excellent Institution, the Shipwrecked Mariners’ Aid Society; and that is about all I remember about it, except that one of the Coast Guard Officers treated us with the greatest kindness.

“I cannot remember his name, but he will excuse that, for men like him will receive a better reward than anything I can say.”



ESSEX STANDARD - Saturday 12 March 1881 - “LOCAL LAW CASE - HIGH COURT OF JUSTICE, CHANCERY DIVISION - Thursday, March 10 - Before Vice-Chancellor HALL - SMYTHIES AND OTHERS v. BARNARD AND OTHERS - THE ROWHEDGE FERRY - This was an application on behalf of the plaintiffs, the Rev. Charles Alan Smythies, of Roath, Glamorgan, the owner of the East Donyland Ferry, and Elizabeth Levett and Walter Levett, his lessees, upon motion to the Court for an injunction to restrain the defendants, Thomas Barnard, of East Donyland, mariner, and his two sons, Benjamin Barnard and Robert Barnard, and each of them, their and each of their servants, boatmen, and agents, from plying for hire at or near plaintiff’s ferry, on the River Colne, situate at Rowhedge, East Donyland, in the County of Essex, and from injuring or in any way interfering with the plaintiffs, or either of them in their use and enjoyment of the above-names Ferry, and for such further or other order as to the Court should seem just.

Mr. C. Warmington, of the Chancery Bar (instructed by Messrs. Goody and Son, solicitors, Colchester), appeared on behalf of the plaintiffs; but the defendants, although duly served with the writ and notice of the intended motion, did not appear.

It appeared from the opening statement of Counsel on behalf of plaintiffs, supported by a number of affidavits filed on their behalf, and read to the Court, that the plaintiff, Charles Alan Smythies, is a descendant of the late Francis Smythies, Esq., of Colchester, whose family has owned the ferry for upwards of 60 years past, the late George Levett, and the above-named plaintiffs, Elizabeth Levett, his widow, and their son Walter Levett, having been tenants of the said ferry and paid rent for the same for upwards of 40 years past, and at the present time holding the same under a lease.

The defendants, Thomas Barnard and his two sons, without, it was alleged by the plaintiffs, any pretence of title whatever to the ferry, had recently started a new boat with which they plied for hire in opposition to the Levetts, and were proved to have received tolls in respect thereof.

Vice-Chancellor Hall inquired what was the origin of the title.

Mr. Warmington said the Ferry was part of the Manor of East Donyland, and produced an admission of Daniel Bayley as far back as 1725, from whom the plaintiff, Mr. Smythies, and his predecessors, derived their title, and from that time to the present the title had been proved by the affidavit of Mr. Henry Sidney Goody, who spoke to the subsequent admissions and ownership, and to the receipt of the rent for 40 years and upwards, and there was evidence that for a great number of years the toll had been received, and among others from the defendants themselves.

The Vice-Chancellor, upon reading the affidavits, at once granted an injunction, restraining all the defendants their servants, boatmen, and agents from plying for hire at or near the plaintiff’s ferry, and from injuring, or in any was interfering with, the plaintiffs or either of them in their use and enjoyment of the ferry, with notice to be served on the defendants that if they neglected to obey the order of the Court they would be liable to have their property sequestered for the purpose of compelling them to obey the same, and they would also be liable to be arrested and committed to prison.”



THE IPSWICH JOURNAL - Tuesday 29 March 1881 - “ROWHEDGE - THE FERRY CASE - Mr. Warmington moved in Lincoln’s Inn on Thursday, before Vice-Chancellor Hall, in the action of Smithers against Barnard, to commit the defendants, Thomas and Robert Barnard, for contempt of Court. The plaintiff is the proprietor of a ferry at Rowhedge, East Donyland,  and on the 10th inst. he obtained an injunction against the defendants restraining them from ferrying passengers and cattle across the river Colne at Rowhedge. The defendants then did not appear. The order of the Court was served upon them, but they disregarded it. Hence the present motion to commit. Evidence having been given by affidavit in support of the motion, Mr. Warmington read a telegram to the effect that Robert Barnard had submitted, and the Vice-Chancellor issued an order of attachment against Thomas only. Shortly afterwards Thomas Barnard appeared in Court, and in reply to his lordship said he was no scholar, and had to wait for someone to read the order of the Court to him. He had a petition signed by 1,000 persons in favour of his ferrying at Rowhedge. The Vice-Chancellor: I have nothing to do with that. Will you obey the order of the Court? Thomas Barnard: Yes; I suppose so. The Vice-Chancellor: Very well, you must pay the costs of this motion and go away.”



ESSEX STANDARD - Saturday 21 May 1881 - “EAST DONYLAND - THE ROWHEDGE FERRY DISPUTE - In the High Court of Justice, before Vice-Chancellor Hall, on Thursday, 12th May, the case of Smythies and Others v. Barnard and Others was brought forward. The case again came before the Court upon the application of the plaintiffs to commit the elder defendant, Thomas Barnard, of East Donyland, for contempt of Court in not complying with the Order made on the 10th March last, whereby he was, with the other defendants, restrained from plying for hire at or near the plaintiff’s Ferry, and from injuring or in anywise interfering with the plaintiffs, any or either of them, in their use and enjoyment of the said Ferry. - Mr. C.M. Warmington of the Chancery Bar (instructed by Messrs. Goody and Son, solicitors, of Colchester), appeared on behalf of the plaintiffs, and moved upon affidavits for the committal of the defendant, Thomas Barnard. He stated that it would be in the recollection of his Lordship that when on the last occasion application was made for the Order, the defendant Barnard appeared in person, and upon entering into a promise that he would obey the Order of the Court, the plaintiffs, at the suggestion of his Lordship, undertook not to issue the writ of Attachment until he made default in obeying the Order, and even then not to do so without again bringing the facts before the notice of his Lordship. The Plaintiffs were willing to accept the Defendant’s promise, but notwithstanding this he had again brought his boat round to the Ferry, had plied for hire, and carried passengers, charging toll for so doing, and had intimated his intention to do so until he was taken by Order of the Court. Under the circumstances the plaintiffs had no alternative but to bring the facts before the Court, and to ask that a Writ of Attachment should issue. - His Lordship said the learned Counsel had proved quite sufficient to enable him to ask that the Writ of Attachment should issue, and the application would , therefore, be granted. - We understand that on Tuesday last the Writ was executed by the officers of the Sheriff of Essex, and the defendant, Thomas Barnard was arrested and lodged in the Gaol at Springfield.”



ESSEX STANDARD - Saturday 28 May 1881 - “COLCHESTER (COUNTY), May 21 - Before the Rev. W. Walsh, in the Chair; C.R. Bree, Esq., M.D.; Major Disney, Captain Brett; W. Macandrew, and E. Roberts, Esqrs. - THE ROWHEDGE FERRY DISPUTE - Mr. Henry Goody said he appeared before the Bench to make an application under circumstances which he was happy to say were of rather unusual occurrence, and for the purpose of asking the assistance of the Bench. He appeared on behalf of Mrs. Levett and Walter Levett, who were the lessees under the Rev. Chas. H. Smythies, of the Rowhedge Ferry, a property which they had held for sixty years in their family by right of title of which there was no shadow of doubt; in fact there were documents in which their family name appeared for 120 years past, and his client was now the lessee of the Rowhedge Ferry under a deed of lease for which they paid an annual rent. Certain proceedings had been obliged to be taken in the Court of Chancery, and in consequence of those proceedings, Vice-Chancellor Hall granted an injunction restraining a man named Thomas Barnard, from carrying on another ferry or interfering with the original ferry, notwithstanding which Barnard persisted in carrying on his ferry and receiving tolls in spite of the order of the Court. It became necessary that the authority of the Court and that his client should be protected, and an application was made to Vice-Chancellor Hall asking for a writ of attachment to issue against Thos. Barnard for non-compliance with the order. Barnard then appeared in person, and the Vice-Chancellor told him the consequences of his act, and Barnard apologised for disobeying the order of the Court, and promised most faithfully that he would not disobey again. In consequence of that promise and in deference to an observation which fell from the Vice-Chancellor they then refrained from issuing the writ of attachment against Barnard, and undertook that they would not issue the writ unless Barnard committed a breach of the order again, and until it had been brought before the notice of his Lordship. They did not press the case then, and thought that the matter had been settled and arranged, until the 7th May, when Barnard, having intimated that he would do so, again brought his boat to the ferry and openly plied for hire, notwithstanding the order of the Court. After such a direct violation of the order of the Court, the case was brought under the notice of Vice-Chancellor Hall on May 12th, and a writ of attachment was issued on Tuesday last, and Barnard was taken into custody. These proceedings had caused an ill-feeling in the minds of the members of Barnard’s family, but the Magistrates would be surprised to hear the course that had since been taken by Thomas Barnard, jun. On Tuesday evening last, the day when Thomas Barnard, sen., was taken into custody, Barnard, jun., went about six o’clock to the house occupied by Walter Levett and tried to force open the door, and swore that if he could get at Levett he would “rip him up.” The affair culminated on Friday night about 20 minutes past 10, when Mrs. Barnard, accompanied by Thomas Barnard, jun., Benj. Barnard, Turner Barnard, Jas. Miller, who keeps the Ship Inn, Mrs. Barnard, wife of Barnard, sen., and a Mrs. Stiles, assembled with 80 or 100 persons in a tumultuous assemblage and marched through the streets of East Donyland, publicly announcing their intention of going to Walter Levett’s house, and killing him. When they arrived at his house, Mrs. Barnard, sen., called out “Ferry ahoy!” which was the usual manner of calling Levett out when persons wanted to cross the ferry late at night. Levett, however, had heard the disturbance, and did not answer to the call. Those outside then attacked his house, smashed all the windows, broke the door, and threatened Levett’s housekeeper, who lives with him. Under these circumstances he should ask the Bench either to grant him warrants of apprehension against the seven defendants or summonses against them for misdemeanour, which would be returnable for next Saturday. Mr. Goody added, that Police-Sergeant Hewitt and Police-Constable Hubbard were sent for. The former came, but the disturbance was then over and his services were of no avail. Superintendent Daunt said the reason Police-Constable Hubbard did not go to the spot was because he was under medical treatment at the time. Mr. Goody said of course under those circumstances it was not to be expected that Hubbard would go out. In reply to the Clerk (Mr. H. Jones), Thomas Barnard, jun., who was present in Court, promised that he would not commit a breach of the peace before next Saturday, and the summonses applied for by Mr. Goody were then granted. Mr. Goody asked the Bench to appoint an extra policeman at East Donyland, as his clients went in bodily fear. Supt. Daunt was instructed to take whatever steps he deemed necessary.”



THE IPSWICH JOURNAL - Tuesday 31 May 1881 - “THE ROWHEDGE FERRY DISPUTE - SERIOUS DISTURBANCE OF THE PEACE - Mrs. Barnard and her daughter, Susannah Styles, Thomas and Benjamin Barnard (who wore the uniform of officers in the mercantile marine), and James Miller, landlord of the Ship Inn, Rowhedge, were charged with riotously assembling, in the company of others, to the number of 50 and more, and attacking the dwelling-house of Mr. Walter Levitt, at Rowhedge, and otherwise disturbing the peace of her Majesty’s subjects.

Mr. Laxton, barrister (instructed by Mr. H. Goody), appeared for the prosecution; Mr. Beaumont defended.

Notwithstanding a protest by Mr. Beaumont, all the accused were placed in the dock.

Mr. Beaumont applied that the cases against the defendants might be heard separately, to give each an opportunity of giving evidence; but the Bench refused to accede to that course.

The information against Miller was withdrawn, and Mr. Beaumont expressed a hope that he would be indemnified for the trouble and expense he had been put to.

The case was then proceeded with, in presence of a crowded Court. The proceedings lasted six hours.

It appears that the Barnards have for some time past endeavoured to establish a ferry boat at Rowhedge in opposition to the ferry legally held for many generations by the Levitt family. An injunction was obtained by Mr. Walter Levitt in the High Court of Justice, Chancery Division, restraining Barnard from infringing Levitt’s right. Barnard nevertheless continued to use the boat, and the result was his arrest for contempt of Court, and lodgement in the county gaol at Springfield. On the arrest of Barnard, the defendants and others commenced annoying Levitt, and eventually quite a riot took place. Levitt’s house was attacked, the windows were smashed with big stones, a number of which were produced in Court, and his life was in peril. Mr. Laxton described the assault on the house as something similar to the attacks made in the sister isle on landlords’ residences, and expressed a hope that such proceedings would not be tolerated in England. He called the prosecutor and a number of witnesses.

For the defence it was contended that there was “much ado about nothing.” Mrs. Barnard was naturally exasperated at the arrest of her husband, and her children sympathised with her. If the Bench sent these two women to gaol on a charge of riot, the whole nation would ring with laughter. With regard to the prosecutor, he was an old man who would soon have to cross another ferry, and he hoped before that time came he would have seen the error of his ways.

Eventually the Bench dismissed the charge of rioting, but bound the defendants over in sureties of £10 and their own recognizances to keep the peace for 12 months.”



ESSEX STANDARD - Saturday 16 July 1881 - “ROWHEDGE - THE FERRY DISPUTE - In the Chancery Division of the High Court of Justice, before Vice-Chancellor Sir Charles Hall, on Thursday, Mr. Garth applied, with the consent of all parties, for the release of a man named Thos. Barnard, who was committed to Holloway Prison about two months ago for contempt of Court. He had continued to ply a ferry boat across the River Colne near Colchester, after an injunction had been obtained restraining him from doing so. When served with the injunction he refused to obey it; hence his committal to prison. The Rev. H.E. Lufkin, Vicar of East Donyland, the parish in which Barnard resides, has been actively engaged in collecting subscriptions for Barnard, as he lost his fishing smack and tackle in the great storm in January last. The Vice-Chancellor said that, when all parties agreed, he would make the order asked.”


ESSEX COUNTY STANDARD - Saturday 22 February 1896 - “ROWHEDGE - DEATH OF MR. THOMAS BARNARD - REMARKABLE CAREER IN LIFE SAVING - The news of the death, on Friday, Feb. 14, of a well-known and highly esteemed octogenarian resident of Rowhedge, in the person of Mr. Thomas Barnard, came as a surprise to his many friends in the parish, inasmuch as he had been out and about in his usual health within a few days. He attended the Conservative smoking concert held at the Lion Inn on Feb. 6, at which Mr. Round, M.P., was present, and he was even out as recently as Wednesday, Feb. 12, when he unfortunately contracted bronchitis, and he passed peacefully away on Friday night, being in the full possession of his faculties till within a few minutes of his death. The deceased was not only a native of and one of the oldest mariners of Rowhedge - he was 80 years of age - but with the exception of a few years when he was in a large way of business in the oyster trade near Chichester, he resided in the parish all his life, and had a most remarkable career in piloting and salvaging, having been owner and skipper of several smacks, including the “Unity”, “Thomas and Mary,” and “Prince of Orange,” with which he was the means of rescuing from time to time a large number of lives. Indeed, he had a record in this respect quite phenomenal, the number of lives rescued by him being estimated at over 900. No weather (said a Rowhedge resident to a member of our staff on Wednesday) was too “dirty” for him to venture out to the help of others, he was as strong as a lion, as resolute as a bull, he feared nothing, and he wanted nothing for his services in life saving. He was the head of a family of sons - Captain Turner Barnard, who now represents the parish on the District Council, and is a well known “Skipper,” is the oldest - of whose life-saving records there is every reason to be proud. Many years ago a large number of emigrant ships hailing from Hamburg were wrecked on the Longsand or Kentish Knock, and on these occasions Tom Barnard was generally in evidence, and was the means of rescuing hundreds of poor emigrants from a watery grave. On one occasion he made two or three voyages with his smack and landed emigrants at Walton-on-Naze, besides putting no less than 150 men, women, and children from the wrecked vessel on board a passing ship. On another occasion when out with his son, Capt. Turner Barnard, he had a very stiff job in connection with the wreck of a vessel on the Longsand. There were about a dozen smacks hovering around the distressed vessel, but all of them left except the Unity, and at 11 o’clock at night the vessel “came off,” and having knocked herself to pieces quickly sunk, Barnard being successful in rescuing the crew of fourteen hands. These are merely one or two of many instances in which he succeeded in saving shipwrecked crews. In the course of his many attempts to rescue others he sometimes lost his own boats. On one particular occasion not only his boats, but the boats of other smacks at a wreck were lost, and he rigged up some sort of a boat out of the wrecked ship’s topsail and spars which floated, and drove about with 27 human beings in it till it was picked up by his smack. From a Spanish schooner lost on the Longsand, Barnard took off a crew of six, one being dead. When the steamer Battalion was wrecked on the Longsand, Barnard went to her as did several Harwich and other smacks. They all lost their boats, but Barnard ran the “Unity” alongside in a heavy sea several times and the salvagers and the crew of the wrecked vessel jumped on board and were saved. At one time Barnard’s smack was hired by the Trinity Authorities as a pilot cutter - this was in the sixties - to work on this coast. He acted as master, and while so commissioned he was the means of saving at least half-a-dozen crews. The last time of him going to sea was to a wreck on the Whittaker Sands during the great gale of 1881. On that memorable occasion he lost both anchors and chain on the Grain Spit at Sheerness and broke up, but Barnard and his son Turner and the rest of the crew landed in safety. It may be added that in the whole of his remarkable career this plucky mariner never lost a single member of his crew. But in addition to the rescues he effected by means of his smacks, deceased made several personal rescues from the water, and notably on one occasion, about forty-five years ago, when being informed while in bed that two boys who had gone to bathe were drowning at Rowhedge, he got up and ran to the spot, and after diving several times got the two boys, though one of them was dead. For his bravery on this occasion he was awarded a medal, and he also held other medals for life-saving, while on more than one occasion he and his son Turner have been ”chaired” round Harwich after rescuing shipwrecked crews. Deceased enjoyed life pensions from the Royal Alfred and another Society. He leaves a widow (in feeble health) and eight or nine children.

The remains of the deceased were interred in the parish Churchyard on Thursday afternoon, the Rev. H.E. Lufkin, Rector, officiating. Great respect for the memory of the deceased was shown on all hands. In the river and at various places ashore flags were displayed at half-mast, and all along the route from deceased’s residence to the Churchyard shops were closed and blinds drawn at private houses. No less than sixty of deceased’s near relatives attended as mourners, including his widow, six sons, and one daughter (with their families) and three sisters; while a very large number of parishioners and friends from Wyvenhoe and Colchester, &c., assembled at the Church and graveside to pay a last token of respect. Deceased having been a Freemason, several of his brother members of the Craft were among those present. Amongst the floral tributes of sympathy were wreaths from Mr. James Round, M.M., and from deceased’s sons, his granddaughter, and other relatives and friends.”

Thomas Barnard. The fishing smack is William Bartholomew's Alexandra.
bottom of page