Appendix 71 - The Chartist Trials

Extract from the Chartist Trial held at Monmouth Assizes on 4th January 1840.

Christopher Kidner sworn.

Examined by Mr. Serjeant Ludlow.

I believe you are a butcher? -- Yes.
Do you live near Pontypool? -- Yes.
How far from Pontypool? -- It is about four miles.
Somewhere near Cross-y-Ceilog? -- Yes.
Do you remember, on Monday morning, the 4th of November, being at home? -- Yes.
Did any persons come to your house on that morning? -- Yes.
About what o'clock? -- It might be between seven and eight.
About how many? -- There were five or six came and took me out of the house.
How do you mean, that they took you out; what did yhey do to you, or say to you? -- They had arms; some had pikes, and hatchets, and guns, and other weapons.
What did they say to you? -- They said that I must come along with them.
Were you willing to go? -- No, I was not.
Why did you go? -- Because I was taken by force.
Was any thing done to you? -- One of them put a spear to me, and said they would push it into me if I did not come.
How near did they put the spear to you? -- They put it here, against my waistcoat.
Do you know Jones, the watchmaker, of Pontypool, who keeps the Bristol House? -- Yes, I have seen him many times.
Did you see him that morning, after you had been taken by the men? -- Yes.
Where? -- I saw him at Malpas.
With how many men did you go to Malpas? -- I should think there were from 2,000 up to 3,000 altogether.
A large body of from 2,000 to 3,000? -- Yes.
Did you walk alone or between any persons? -- Between them; there were a great many accompanied me.
Is there a place near the Malpas Turnpike called Crindar? -- Yes.
Is there a lane there that joins the two turnpike roads, the one from Pontypool to Newport, and the other from Risca to Newport, towards Penylan? -- Yes.
Did you, and the men whom you were with, go along that lane? -- Yes.
From the Pontypool road towards the Risca Road? -- Yes.
Who was it told you to go up that lane? -- Jones.
What did Jones say when he told you to go along the lane? -- He said, "This is the way, up this lane."
And that lane leads to the turnpike road that runs from Risca to Newport? -- Yes, sure.
As you were going along that lane towards the other road, did you meet any collier? -- Yes.
Was he coming from Newport? -- Yes, across the fields.
By any path? -- No, there was no path; he came to this lane.
Did he come in the contrary direction to that in which you were going? -- Yes.
Did any thing pass between him and Jones? -- Yes; he came up to the hedge, and Jones asked him where he had been; he dais he had been to Newport, and there were three or four killed.
Mr. Baron Parke. At what time of the day was this? -- It was about 10 o'clock.
Mr Serjeant Ludlow. Was this man coming fast? -- No , he was not coming fast; he came up to the hedge.
Did Jones say any thing upon that? -- Jones said "Dam'me, then we are done."
Did you hear Jones say those words? -- Yes, I did.
Did he say any thing further? -- No, he did not say any thing further than we were to follow him.
Which way did you go then? -- To Penylan Vawr.
Where did you go from there? -- There I left the company, and I went to Newport.
Mr. Baron Parke. Did Jones go with you to Penylan Vawr? -- Yes.
What became of him afterwards? -- I do not know; I never saw him after.
Mr Serjeant Ludlow. This body of persons that you have spoken of, from 2,000 to 3,000, did you see whether they had any thing in their hands or not? -- O yes, a great many of them had arms.
What sort of arms?
-- Some had pikes, and some guns, pistols, and hatchets, and different sorts of weapons.

Cross-examined by Mr. Kelly

I do not understand about Jones, when he said, "Then we are done;" did you and he go away together? -- No, he was alongside of us.
Upon some body coming from Newport, and saying that three or four were killed, Jones said, "Then we are done;" what did Jones do then? -- I do not know what he did then, onl he said, "Then we are done."
Was that the last you saw of him? -- Yes.
Then did you, upon hearing that, turn around and go away? -- No, I followed him up as far as they went to the road that leads to Risca.
Let me understand you; you tell me one moment you saw no more of him, and now you say that you followed him? -- After I left him at Penylan Vawr I saw no more of him.
How far is Penylan Vawr from the place where he said this? -- About a quarter of a mile.
Did Jones, when he had made that observation, go to Penylan Vawr? -- Yes.
Mr. Baron Parke. Is that in the direction of Newport? -- Away from Newport.
Mr Kelly. Then Jones, when he made this observation, did not go on towards Newport, but away from Newport? -- Away from Newport.
And you followed him there? -- Yes.
And there you lost sight of him for the day? -- Yes.
How far is Penylan Vawr from Newport? -- I cannot tell you; it might be a maile and a half, I suppose; I cannot exactly say.
Now, just one question; how far altogether did you go with these people; where was it they took you up? -- It was about six miles from Cross-y-Ceilog.
Then you went all the way to very near Newport? -- Yes; when we turned up that lane it was about the same distance.
How far did you you go altogether? -- About six miles; it might be a little more.
How long were you with them? -- I suppose it might be two hours.
Not more than that? -- No, I think not.
You have made a deposition, have you not; that is you have made oath to a paper? -- Yes.
Then I will ask you, did you know while you were going with them what you were going to do? -- No, I did not.

Re-examined by Mr. Serjeant Ludlow.

The road that you were coming down from Cross-y-Ceilog, would that have taken you on to Newport, if you had not turned up this lane at Malpas turnpike? -- Yes.
And did that lead to the road from Risca to Newport? -- Yes.
Is Penylan Vawr before you get out into that road, or after you get out into that road? -- Before.

List of Appendices

Home Page

Last updated on 7th February 2008