The township of Manchester and and five other townships merged to create the Borough of Manchester in 1838 (see here). Policing had been handled by each individual township. On 23rd January 1839 the Manchester Borough Watch Committee was formed consisting of 22 members of the Council who were to oversee the inception and at first the running of the local police force. The following are extracts from and based on the minutes of the Watch Committee meetings.  It reveals the names of the men, and in some cases their addresses,  who made up the Manchester Borough Police Force.  Also included are details of promotions, demotions, fines and awards metered out to the men of the force. It also shows some of the actions taken by Sir Charles Shaw, who was the Chief Commissioner of Police. The minutes however do not explain that  legal objections were made to the Act which Incorporated Manchester (and other places) by some sitting officials including some Coroners. In some cases Inquests were being conducted twice. One by the Manchester Borough Coroner and another by the former Township Coroner. Another point of dispute was the funding of the Police Force. The Watch Committee were paying for the Police Force out of the Poor Rate and Police Rate as they had no power to raise a Watch Rate. This was illegal and the Police Commissioners attempted to use powers granted in the 1835 Act to block them doing this. The result was that for a period of time there were three separate police forces operating under the Court Leet,  the Police Commissioners and the Watch Committee. A special Bill was introduced in mid 1839 to empower the Crown to appoint a Chief Commissioner of Police for the Borough of Manchester to establish a new Police Office. The Commissioner was to hold office for two years, during which time it was hoped the litigation with regards to the municipal charter would be completed. The Watch Committee did resume their authority over the Borough Police Force at the end of the period, but it was not until 1846 that the arguments over Incorporation were finally over.

These momentous decisions were resolved at the Watch Committee meeting of March 25th 1839.

That the number of men to be engaged be fixed at 310 men for day and night duty and their wages  set at seventeen shillings per week.

That 20 Inspectors be appointed and that in making the estimates the wages of the Inspectors be fixed at twenty seven shillings per week.

That £400 per year be fixed as the salary for the Head Constable.

That seven lockups would be required for the purpose of the police.

That the lockup keepers wages be fixed at twenty five shillings per week.

That seven clerks be employed at an average wage of twenty shillings per week.

At the meeting of the 24th April 1839 in addition to the above it was decided to employ one Indoor Superintendent at a wage of £250 per year and also 8 Indoor Constables at a wage of twenty five shilling per week. However at the meeting the following day more additions were made and the following staffing was agreed upon.


This made a revised total of 343 men, which was an increase of about 75 on the numbers who had been employed with the area of the Borough. The Committee also stated the aims of the force.

By the establishment of the force now recommended, there would be secured within the borough an effective Police Force at all times on duty throughout the day as well as the  night, equal protection will be afforded to every part of the borough, many parts of which consisting of warehouses, are during many portions of the day left in a most unprotected state.

In addition to the yearly expenditure it was agreed to spend £1,510 on clothing for the men (constables) and £196 on clothing for the Inspectors and Indoor Constables. Other expense up to £1,025  were to be allowed.

At the Watch Committee meeting of May 30th it was resolved:

That this Committee do now proceed to the appointment of the officers and police constables of the Borough Police Force and that they enter upon their respective duties on Monday 17th July next (1839). The following appointments were confirmed:

Inspectors: John Taylor, James Austin, Thomas Walker, James Cockayne, John Peter Bibby, Joshua Brown, Wm. Kirkwood, Charles Jackson, James Wardle, Joseph Twiss.

Mr Edward Davies appointed pro tempore Superintendent of Police.

The following men were all ex Manchester Watchmen appointed as Constables.

Thomas Sumner Fray's Place
John Maybury* 2 Holmes Yard nr Ashley Lane
John Collier 6, Riga St, Hulme
Richard Brown  
John Brierly 3 Joules Ct, Browncross St, New Bailey St, Salford
Charles Brereton 5 Sutton's Ct, David St.
Edward Roberts 3 Landywell Ct, Greengate, Salford
William Rider  
William Glenn 4 Owen's  Ct, Hulme
William Sykes 52 Woodward St, New Islington
Thomas Egan behind 63 Blossom St, Ancoats
Edmund Clegg 15 Lord St, late Duke St, Hulme
James Foster 4 Hargreaves St, Hulme
William Holmes 23 Cambridge St, Chorlton on Medlock
John Holmes Bk York St, Hulme
Joseph Lythgoe 5 Russell St, Ashton New Rd
William Leigh 3 Rever St, Ardwick
John Richardson 83 Silver St
John Wood 94 Chapel St, Bank Top
Thomas Butterworth 4 Stove St, Portland St
Thurston Briggs 4 Ailington St, Shaw's Brow, Salford
John Ollier  
John Houghton 3 Muslinett St, Hope St, Oldfield Rd, Salford
George Bond 4 White Lion St, Liverpool Rd
John Tyson  
Joseph Kirklane 15 New Butler St, Oldham Rd
John Hope  5 Nelson St, Chapel St, London Rd
George Barlow Baxter's Building, Lloyd St, Hulme
George Taylor 3 Lyon St, Higher Ardwick
James Thorlay 5 Collier St, Liverpool Rd
William Simmons 7 Fielden Ct, Primrose St
Thomas Walker 360 Oldham Rd
Samuel Ponsonby 8 Arthur St, Fairfield St
Thomas Lee 9 Dyche St, Angel St
John Maddens  
Joseph Sutton 15 Robinson's Blds, Queen St, Salford
Samuel Brierley 5 Edward St, Pendleton
George Barker 46 Tib St
Matt Meddell  
William Constantine 12 P???, West Long St, Church Gate Blds
Henry Hindley 1 Mellor's Ct, Blakely St
James Longson 6 Temple St, Chorlton upon Medlock
Thomas Brown  
Matthew Rogerson 10 Clarence St, Hulme
Henry Knight 9 Mangle St, Bk Piccadilly
Henry Wilson 3 Mount Pleasant St, Shaw's Blds, Salford
Robert Bowstead 27 Canal St, David St
James Lowe 9 Lark St, Stone St
William Howard 14 Nelson St, Blakely St
Richard Cooper 8 Arthur St, Mayfield
John Parker  1 Hulme St, Pope Gardens, Chorlton upon Medlock
David Birtwistle 4 Edward St, Oldham Rd
John Sumner at Samuel Newton's, Friar Place, Hunts Bank
George Beckett 9 Gt Mount St
Samuel Lowe 3 Worsley St, London Rd
John Downs 2 Oswald St, Miller St
Isaiah Timperley 1 Hayes Yard, Newberry St
James McDonald  
William Sutton  
Charles Wilson 10 Prussia St, off Oldham Rd
Joseph McKee 2 Melbourne Place, Melbourne St, Hulme
Charles McHugh 18 Groom St, Butler St
John Heaton Marland's Blds, Carter St, Long Millgate
John Hadfield 27 Given St, Hulme
James Lawton 2 Herod St
William Hassall 16 Cable St
William Taylor 19 Club Row, Oldham Rd
John Dutton 7 Rusholme Lane, Chorlton upon Medlock
William McGill 66 Red Bank
John Armstrong Pollard St, Ancoats
Ernest Whitworth 9 Ann St, Chorlton upon Medlock
William Aldred 14 Dunn St, Moss Lane, Hulme
Thomas Thornhill 14 Neild St
George Jepson 19 Spring Field Lane, Salford
William Broadie 5 Wright St, Bk Quay St
John Buckley 9 Gt Mount St, Watson St
William Nixon 11 Prospect St, top of St Stephen's St, Salford
John Martin  
Samuel Lamb 3 Guy St, Fairfield St
Caleb Potter 6 Woolam Place, Liverpool Rd
John Williamson 49 Spinning Field, Deansgate
Samuel Crank 27 Owen St, Hulme
John Harvey 4 Dumville St, Knott Mill
James Radford 11 Caygill St, Salford
Robert Booth Hargreaves Ct, Bk Piccadilly
William Paul 3 Stage Blds, Parsonage
William Longden 7 Scotland St, Red bank
Joseph Vernon 12 Dawson's Croft, Greengate, Salford
Matthew White  
John Chorlton 25 Union St, Salford
James Stott  
James Groom Groom's Blds, Cow lane, Oldfield Lane
William Sullivan 11 Portland St, Newtown
John Heywood 2 Dumville St, Byson St
Enoch Wynn 5 Alpha St, Hulme
Thomas Beattie George Leigh St, Ancoats
Edward Brooks 6 Hutchinson St, Salford
John Spence Coombs 7 Rusholme Lane, Chorlton upon Medlock
William Henderson Under Bridge Academy, George St, Salford
Elijah Radcliffe 19 Red Bank
Thomas Maddocks 10 Copley's Blds, Hanging Bridge
Samuel Naylor 3 Heap's Ct, Cow Lane, Salford
Peter McHugh 18 Crown St, Butler St
James Stock 6 John St, Gt Ancoats St
Thomas North 4 McCree's Blds, Hargreaves St, Hulme
Patrick Wroe  
John Crankshaw 13 Hardman St
Charles Little 24 Bk Holgate St, Nr Mason st
William Cliffe Tray's Place, Nr Strangeways
Joseph Mather  
James Nadin 8 Albion St, Granby Row
William Jordan 20 Barrett St, Oldham Rd
Andrew McKee 3 Cross St, Chorlton upon Medlock
Thomas Taylor 8 Heap's Ct, Cow Lane, Salford
William White Robert's St, Uxbridge St, Salford
Richard Harrison  
William Derbyshire  
John Blagden Garden St, Old St, Ardwick
William McMaster 3 Bk Faulkner St
Peter Tighe 91 Clarendon St, Hulme
Peter Kinsey  
Robert Taylor 1 James St, Phillips St, Springfield Lane, Salford
Thomas Holland 4 Robert's Blds, Bradshaw St, Hulme
James Seddon  
Samuel Bolton 4 Nelson St, Ashley Lane
John Tooney  
Luke Howarth Harpurhey
James Waters 2 Joiner St, Rochdale Rd
Robert McElroy 30 Wood St
William Cordingley  
Samuel Jones 37 Lomas St, London Rd
Jonathan Pridden  
John Hancock 45 Broster St, Broughton Rd, Salford
William Sutton 5 York St, Springfield Lane, Salford
Matthew Horton 11 Mayo St, Ardwick
William Willett  
Henry Elliott  
John Hayes 15 Spencer St, Holt Town
Joseph Lythgoe 5 Nutall's Blds, back of 117 Every St
James Radford 4 Bilbery St, Newtown
John Halton  
Peter Arnold 36 Every St, Ancoats
Joseph Chorlton 25 Union St, Salford
Terrence McHugh ditto or 14 Fleet St, Deansgate
James Lowe  
Joseph Field 80 Red Bank
Benjamin Street 18 Spear St, Bk Piccadilly

That Percival Jefferson engaged as clerk in the Borough Police at a salary of 17/- per week

*This appears to be the John Maybury who embroiled in the events of September 18th 1867. See here.

Meeting 3rd June 1839

Candidates to be interviewed for the post of Head Constable:

Charles George Finney, J H Hatton, Richard Beswick, John Stephens, James D H Hay.

Richard Beswick appointed Head Constable.

Edward Davies of Manchester appointed Indoor Superintendent of the Borough Constabulary Force.



Meeting 4th June 1839

Candidates for Superintendents:

Richard Cockrane from Liverpool

William Smith from Liverpool

John Poole from Liverpool

James Sawley of Manchester Police

Abraham Brierly Deputy Constable of Cheetham

Cyrus Allcock Deputy Constable of Hulme

John Phoenix of Manchester Police

Richard Green of Manchester Police

James Irwin of Manchester Police

John Smith of Manchester Police

Major G E McClean from Fort William

Resolved - Appointed as Superintendents:

James Sawley, Richard Cockrane, Cyrus Allcock


Meeting 5th June 1839

Christopher Charles Stephenson of Hull, George Pierce  of Liverpool, Frederick Mainwaring of Liverpool appointed  Superintendents.

Richard Green and John Phoenix of the Manchester Police appointed Lock-up Keepers. Robert Love of the Ardwick Police appointed Inspector. Joseph Ankers deputy Constable of Chorlton upon Medlock appointed Inspector.


Meeting 6th June 1839 (Morning)

Resolved that David Lipsett, John Butcher, Charles Dale and William Sickle appointed Inspectors.

Resolved that ten of the appointments of Inspector be held over.

Resolved that the following men be appointed Lock-up Keepers: John Livingston, Thomas Rushton, Thomas Norbury, George Armitage, William Boothby.

Resolved that the following men be appointed Indoor Constables: James Williamson, William Baxendale, Archibald McMullen, Benjamin Cross, Robert Boyd, Squire Wolfenden (various spellings appear later),Thomas Hindley, Isaac Lomas.


Meeting 6th June 1839 (Afternoon)

Resolved that the following Constables previously employed by Chorlton Row be appointed Constables in the Manchester Borough Police Force: Alexander McDonald, Stewart Mitchell, Anthony Ashworth, John Fielding, John Mereweather, Nathaniel Aspinale, Edward Hawood, David McBiviney, Daniel Paliss, John Massey, William Astliss, Robert Mycock, John Barratt, Hugh McCabe, Joseph Stead, Thomas Robinson, Samuel Barlow, Thomas Glover, John Loftus, William Wakefield, John Evans, George Scargill, Thomas [Hyburn]. Peter Street.

These  men previously employed by Hulme township were appointed as constables: Dionysius Kock, James Gilhooley, Thomas Fitzpatrick, William Rensahw, James Morris, John Whitcomb, Joseph Webb, John Waddington, Thomas Partington, John Carter, John Houghton, Samuel Irlam, Jonas Bradley, Edward Wilson, Thomas Lamb, William Hill, James Bradbury.

These  men who had been previously employed by the Ardwick Commissioners were appointed Constables: John Donnaghan, John Davies, Daniel Mitton, Thomas Hazlehurst, Joseph Woolley, Philip Ryan, John Burgess, John Murphy, Robert Boyes, Thomas Harrison, Samuel Rawston, John Hayhurst, George Davies.

These men had previously been employed by Cheetham Police were appointed Constables: James Bennett, 55 Long Millgate. William Tankard, Samuel Knose, Thomas Lancaster, James Kirk, David Daniels, John Birtles, George Butterworth.

Matthew Wood of Beswick was also appointed a Constable.


Meeting 7th June 1839

Peter Bailey, Henry Emery and William Hancock, all previously employed by the Chorlton Commissioners were appointed Constables.

The following parties were appointed Constables: John Goodier, Bartholomew Sticky, Daniel Sullivan (Chorlton), Ralf Cottam, John [O'ckel] (Chorlton), George Wilson, Samuel Pollard, John Samuels, Squire George Wolfenden, John Fallon, William Robinson, Edward Hayes, Thomas Fildes, John Clarke, George Smith, James Smith, Francis Beamish, John Harley, Charles Plant, John Barton, Edward Robbins, Edward Ward, William Bowkers, Thomas Taylor, John Dickson, Thomas Dalton, John Salter, George Booth, Roger Judge, Gillham Andrews, John Wentworth, Lewis Lipsett, Charles Dibble, William Henry Hutt, Charles Bingham, John Grieg, John Savage, Benjamin Simpson. George Runnett, William Hill, George Woodruffe, Frederick John Henry Chadwick, Thomas Fazackerley, William Roberts, Melville Burton, John Doyle, George Page, Frederick Rouse, John Minshull, Alexander Kyle Daly,Henry Rose, Peter Rogers, Richard Richardson, John Cartmill, Benjamin Whitehead, Dennis Pullen, Samuel Bennett, John Summerfield, James Brindley, Andrew Moon, Joseph Oakes, John Archer, William Hesketh, Richard Royston, Joseph Astle, T Reid, Charles B Strong, Philip Shannon, Isaac Hobson, Samuel Hankinson, Gabriel Walsh, Bernard Sands, William Jardine.

Meeting 8th June 1839

Resolved that the garments which shall be provided for the Police Constables shall consist of a top coat, body coat, one pair of trousers and a hat. That the colour of the clothes to be provided shall be of blue and the same cut, and the hat similar to those worn by the Metropolitan Police.

Watch Committee Announcement

Whereas the Watch Committee for the Borough of Manchester have in due [force] of Law according to the provisions of the Statute in that behalf made and provided appointed a sufficient number of fit men who have been sworn in before Thomas Potter Esquire a justice of the Peace having jurisdiction within the said Borough to act as Constables for preserving the peace by [day] and by night and preventing robberies and other felonies and apprehending offenders against the peace. Notice is hereby given that the said Borough in manner aforesaid on Monday the seventeenth day of June in this present year and all and every person having the charge, control, possession of any Watch Houses or Watch Boxes in the said Borough of Manchester or of any arm or accoutrements or other necessaries provided at the public expense for any Watchman, Constables, Patrol or Police therein are hereby acquired ordered and directed to give and deliver up the said Watch Houses, Watch Boxes, arms, accoutrements, or other necessaries unto Mr Richard Beswick and Mr Edward Davies being persons appointed by me the undersigned Mayor of the said Borough of Manchester named and appointed to receive the same on the said seventeenth day of June in this present year. And herein the said several persons are not to fail at their peril.

Dated the seventeenth of June in the year of Our Lord one thousand eight hundred and thirty nine.

Thomas Potter. Mayor of the said Borough of Manchester.

Resolved that bells be provided for men on night duty under the directions of the Clothing Committee. That Mr Beswick be instructed to see that the day and night Police are provided with staves and rattles when they enter on their duties.

Meeting 18th June 1839

Resolved that Mr Joshua J Howell of Liverpool be engaged as Senior Clerk in the Police Office at a salary of one hundred and twenty pounds [per year] and that his salary and duties commence on the twenty fourth day of June.

Meeting 20th June 1839

The following men were appointed as constables

Friend Irving Patrick Keely
Robert Boyle David Conn
Charles Henry Murphy Ralph Wood
Robert Wilson Michael Neville
Robert Carswell  

Meeting 21st June 1839

Resolved that Mr Beswick be authorised to procure fro the sue of the Police, twelve pairs of handcuffs, four pairs of leg irons and also a standard for measuring the height of applicants for the situation of Police Constable.

Meeting 27th June 1839

The following men were appointed as Constables: William Henry Eckersley, Phillip Scullen and Thomas Egan.

Resolved that the several Officers and Police Constables in the employ of the Watch Committee be required to reside within the limits of the Borough. Notice be given on or before the 1st day of July next that the Officers and police Constables at present in the employ of the Watch Committee will be required to comply with said requisition within twenty eight days from the said 1st day of July next.


Meeting July 1st 1839

Ordered that all fines imposed upon any of the Police Constables or Officers by this committee shall be paid into and kept as a reserve fund, such fund to be at the disposal of this committee in the payment of rewards or other extra allowances and charges.

Meeting July 4th 1839

That PC William Fletcher be summoned before the Borough Council for being drunk when going off duty on the 28th ulto. And for absenting himself from duty since that date.
This is the first discipline case recorded.

Meeting July 6th 1839

That Mr William Robinson be and is now appointed Clerk in the office of the Indoor superintendent at a salary of 25/- per week; the salary and duties of such appointment to commence on Monday 8th July and that one months' notice be given by the said William Robinson before resigning such appointment.

That James Smith be appointed Clerk in the Head constables office at a salary of 21/- per week from Monday 8th July.

That Thomas Coster be appointed Clerk to the South Police station at a salary ODF 17/- per week from Monday 8th July.

That PC James McDonald having for several weeks acted as clerk at the North Police station now appointed Clerk for such police station at a salary of 17/- per week.

Meeting July 8th 1839

That Inspector Wm Sickle be appointed Coroner's Officer at a salary of 27/- per week, with Inspector's clothing.

That John Lowe is appointed PC at 17/- per week to commence duty immediately.

Meeting July 11th 1839

That PC 26 James Groom be summoned before the Borough Court for absenting himself from from duty.

That Frederick John Henry Chadwick having for some time past satisfactorily discharged the duties of acting Inspector is hereby appointed an Inspector in the Borough Police force.

That the following parties who have been for some time in the employ of the Watch Committee are appointed PCs:
Dennis Moran, Nathaniel Forth, Benjamin McClean, Samuel Hewitt, John Mills.

That Mr Beswick be authorised to procure for the use of the Police Inspectors and indoor constables 32 pairs of snap handcuffs.

That PCs George Taylor and Samuel Bennett, having for some time past satisfactorily discharged the duties of acting inspectors be appointed Inspectors in the Borough Police force.

That the following memorial from Mr Higson regarding the appointment of a Head Lock-up Keeper be entered into the minutes.

The Clerks to the Magistrates in conjunction with Mr Beswick and Mr Davies respectfully submits to the consideration of the watch Committee the necessity of appointing an officer of police to be styled the Head Lock-up Keeper. The duties of the office will be:
He should attend at the Centre Lock-ups at 7.00 o'clock every morning (except Sunday) to receive from the District Lock-up Keepers the prisoners and property taken from them check king the same from the district sheets to see if all be correct - he will then fill up his general daily charge book from the sheets and also the Magistrates' Clerk's book. After which he will take the prisoners separately from the cells and examine them to see if there are any marks or other proofs which may lead to their identity as old offenders and which have escaped the notice of the district lock-up keepers; but upon no account is he allowed to question the prisoners respecting the charges upon which they are then in custody. Guided the the description and the information before him he is to refer to the Thieves Description book and if it appears that any of the prisoners have been previously in custody or convicted, he should note the same, the numbers of times &c on a slip of paper which he will take with him into court to be prepared to answer the inquiry of the Magistrates. When the court is opened he will attend and place the prisoners as they are called before the Magistrates and record the judgement and in what manner the property taken from the prisoner is to be disposed of writing the same in the columns of his Charge Book appropriate for that purpose. He will also receive all fines and costs imposed upon prisoners convicted by the Magistrates for assaults, drunkenness &C &C for which he will weekly account to the Magistrates' Clerk or the treasurer. When the business of the court is over he will see such prisoners as are committed safely delivered to the Gaoler of the New Bailey Prison.
He will attend to deliver the property of prisoners according to the order of the Magistrates taking receipts for all articles so delivered and the remainder he will hand over to the Indoor Superintendent taking his receipt for the same. He will superintend the victualling of all remanded prisoners of others whose term of confinement is so short as not to render it necessary to deliver them to the Gaoler of the New Bailey. Lastly he will fill up the the Thieves' Description Book as circumstances may require.
At Present such of the above duties as relate to the charge of prisoners and the reception of fines are discharged by the Indoor Constables alternatively, the mode is not only very objectionable on account of the changes but inefficient and if continued will prevent the system of books above mentioned from being kept with that facility and regularity which the appointment of one principal and responsible Lock-up Keeper will otherwise insure.

W. Higson
July 4th 1839

That a  Head Lock-up Keeper as described above be appointed.

That Richard Green one of the present Lock-up Keepers shall be appointed Head Lock-up Keeper.



Meeting July 18th 1839

That application made to use the Lock-up under the Town Hall in Chorlton-upon-Medlock.

Meeting July 22nd 1839

Inspector Love was charged by Inspector Bibby (acting as Superintendent in the absence of Superintendent Stephenson) with having on Friday night and Saturday morning last neglected his duty which was proved by the evidence of various PCs.

That Inspector Love be forthwith dismissed from the service of this committee for such neglect of duty.

That the wages of PC John Pullien be paid him for such time as he may be absent from duty in consequences of severe injuries received by him in the discharge thereof.

Mr Superintendent Sawley having submitted a summons which had been served upon him requiring his attendance at the New Bailey courthouse to answer a charge of assault committed whilst on duty within the Borough and a report on that subject of such assault having been submitted by the Head Constable.

That this committee are decidedly of the opinion that the above charge of assault ought to be heard before the Borough Justices sitting at the Court House in Brown St, or otherwise by this committee, and that Mr Superintendent Sawley therefore ought not to appear before the Justices of the peace sitting at the Court House in Salford to answer such charge they not having jurisdiction within this Borough, and that this committee will be prepared to submit the charge for their consideration.

Copy of above sent to the New Bailey Court House.

The following who have or some time been in the employ of this committee now appointed Police Constables of the Borough.

Thos. Coyne Stephen Hurley
Henry Hayes Mich. Reid
Jno. Procter George Batty
Jas. Shaw Joseph Davies
Robert Jones Jno. Parkinson
John Jones Wm. McKean
Jas. Brankley  John Shaw
Josh Little Isaac Nadin
John Adams Thos. Pickering

Letter Received:

Bradford St,
19th July 1839

To the Head constable of the Borough of Manchester.

In consequence of a turn out of some of my work people my mill is regularly beset at the time when workers are proceeding to and from their work. To prevent disturbance, I consider it absolutely necessary a strong force of police should be in the neighbourhood. If you could put a policeman near my mill until this disturbance is settled I shall willingly pay for this extra service.

I am Sir,
yours respectfully,

Chas. Pooley

Resolved: That the Head Constable be authorised to station a police constable out of uniform at Mr Pooley's mill for the purpose of watching the proceedings of the turnouts on the condition that Mr Pooley pay 3/- per day for such services.

Head Constables Report.

The Head Constable begs to recommend to the Borough Watch Committee the necessity of having 24 Inspectors instead of 20 as proposed by the Council at the forming of the Borough Constabulary Force. The Head Constable finding it impossible to have the police constables sufficiently watched with a less number than 24 namely 16 for night and 8 for day duty. At the time the Borough Police commenced their duties, the Head Constable made such report to the Watch Committee who ordered that he should appoint 4 of the police constables to discharge the duties of acting inspectors in which manner those duties are now performed.

The Head Constable is of the opinion that if 4 other Inspectors were permanently appointed it would be for the advantage of the Borough as the police constables would be better watched and consequently they would be kept more attentive to their duties.

The Head Constable also begs to recommend to the committee the necessity of appointing a number of Expectant Constables who should be clothed and paid at a reduced salary, who shall parade at the stations for the purpose of going on the Beats of those permanent men who may be absent through sickness &c and whose pay is stopped while off duty, the total of which is considerable.

The Head Constable is of the opinion that this additional men will be little or no more expense than that at present as no doubt frequent applications will be made for officers to attend theatre, concerts, and other places in which cases the parties making the application will have to pay such sum per day as may be fixed upon by the Watch committee for such attendance.

Signed Rich. Beswick.

Meeting 25th July 1839

A report was presented by the Head Constable that 17 Inspectors and 208 police constables were on extra duty for 4 hours on the evening of Saturday 13th July in order to prepared to act in the case of any riot or disturbance.
That in consideration of such extra service the sum of one shilling and sixpence be paid to the Inspectors and one shilling to the Constables.

A report having be made by the Town Clerk that application would be made to the Magistrates at the New Bailey for a warrant against Mr. Superintendent Sawley for disobeying the summons with which he had been served for an alleged assault in pursuance of the resolution of this committee at the meeting of 22nd July.

That the Town Clerk be instructed to take such proceedings as may appear desirable in reference to the intended application to the County Magistrates for a warrant against Mr. Superintendent Sawley.

That the Watch Committee be are are hereby authorised and empowered to appoint four additional Inspectors for the Borough Police Force as recommended in the report Frisco Head Constable entered upon the minutes of the proceedings of the Watch Committee now read. And also to appoint such numbers of Expectant Constables be required in order to increase the efficiency of the Borough Police Force.

Meeting 1st August  1839

That the wages of the following police constables be paid them for such time as they have or may be absent from duty in consequences of injuries received by them in the discharge of thereof, viz PC 15 William Taylor and PC T. P. Rouse.

A report having been made that PC 93 H. Hindley had discovered a fire in the premises of Mr Wallis – Timber Merchant and from his vigilance and activity the fire was extinguished before much damage had been done.

That PC 93 H. Hindley be paid 5/- out of the Fine Fund as a reward for such services.

That PC 220 Joseph Field be paid 5/- out of the Fine Fund as a reward for great exertion in the discharge of his duty.

That Inspector Lipsett be  paid 9/- for the day he was necessarily absent from duty, giving evidence in a trial at Liverpool.

That Inspector Heath be paid 3/- for the day he was necessarily absent from duty giving evidence in a trail at Wigan.

Meeting 5th August 1839

That the following parties who have for some time been in the employ of this committee are appointed as Police Constables.

James Williamson Samuel O'Neil William Baxter
Charles Matthews John Green John Smith,
Soloman Turner Robert F Joddrell Walter Smythe
Thomas Grimshaw John Miles Squire John Wolfenden
Thomas Taylor    

That the wages of P. Jefferson clerk in the Indoor Superintendent's Office be advanced to 21/- per week, to commence from Friday 9th August.

Meeting 8th August 1839

The Head Constable having reported that a summons had been served upon PC William Hancock requiring him to appear before the Magistrates sitting at the New Bailey court House in Salford to answer an alleged charge of assault committed upon Mrs. Elizabeth Dobson at Chorlton upon Medlock, and that such charge had been previously stated by Mrs. Dobson before this Committee and a fine of 5/- inflicted upon William Hancock.

Meeting 22nd August 1839

That the Indoor Superintendent be authorised to procure 5 dozens of staffs for the use of the night Police Constables.

A letter having been read from Thomas Jackson, who person who had obstructed and assaulted PC No (Blank) while in the discharge of his duty, and for which he Thomas Jackson been bound over to answer a charge before the Borough Magistrates, expressing his sorrow for such improper conduct and a desire that this committee would consider the propriety of disposing of the case so as to prevent the necessity of this having to appear before the Magistrates to answer the charge preferred against him.

That on condition of Thomas Jackson making a public apology for his misconduct, by placard throughout the town and paying the expense thereof, this Committee will consent to forego taking further legal proceedings against him.

Meeting 26th August 1839

That 159 lanterns be provided for Police Constables under the direction of Mr Davies the Indoor Superintendent.

That James Seddon be employed on trial for one week to clean the Lock-up and Police Office and the Police Arms and Accoutrements, and also to act as occasional porter forth Borough Police Office.

Meeting 9th September 1839

Several charges of neglect of duty and impropriety of conduct having been made and proved against Inspectors Chadwick and Bennett.

That they be reduced from the office of Inspector to that of Police Constable.

A report having been made at the last meeting of the Committee by Superintendent Stephenson, that PC Edward Ward had attempted to defraud him by offering what appeared to Mr Stephenson to be a counterfeit sovereign , stating it to be one he had received for wages, and requiring another in place of it. From the evidence then brought forward it appeared to the committee that PC Edward Ward had been guilty of an attempt at fraud, and they therefore discharged him from the service: further evidence having now been produced and heard by the Committee from which it appears that there was no intention on the part of the PC to defraud Mr Stephenson but that he himself had been deceived into the supposition that the sovereign was bad by its being discoloured by mercury when paid to him, and which had not been noticed by Mr Stephenson, who naturally supposed the PC wished to defraud him.

That under such circumstances application be made to two of the Borough Magistrates to sanction the reappointment of Edward Ward to the office of Police Constable and that when such sanction is obtained he be reinstated in the said office.

Meeting 12th September 1839

That the following parties having been for some time employed by the Committee as extra constables of this Borough.

Samuel Belfield John Cottingham
Samuel Hankinson Joseph Legg
Robert Taylor John Wilks
Joseph Riley Samuel Twigg
Edward Roach Edward Dwilling
Alexander Wilson Hugh Tighe
James Rose Edward Cahey
Samuel Spruce Francis Hitchen
James Glass William Hannah
Robert Dunn  

That the following Police Constables having now for some time performed the duties of acting Inspector to the satisfaction of the Committee are appointed Inspectors in the Borough Police Force.

Melville Buxton John Davies
Matthew Weddell Joseph Head
John Maddens Joseph Field
John Samuels  


Meeting 23rd September 1839

That a communication be made on behalf of this Committee to the Watch Committee of the Commissioners Of Police informing them that Police Constable Foster had been discharged for the disgraceful conduct of which he was ;proved to have been guilty of on the morning the 19th instant and recommending that the Watch Committee [of the Commissioners] should cause enquiries to made into the conduct of their conductors McGrath and of the watchman No 11 and others which on the occasion referred to appears to this committee to have been very disgraceful, and such was most likely to lead to a very serious breach of the peace, more especially that of the conductor McGrath who is proved to have been that morning drinking with Foster and other constables, and who although requested so to do did not appear before this committee when the case was enquired into.

Meeting 14th October 1839

That the letter received from Mr Charles Shaw Chief Commissioner of Police together with lists of the Police Constables appointed and rejected by him who are now in the employ of this Committee be entered into the minutes


The 17th instant having as you are aware been fixed upon for putting into force the Act of Parliament for the Manchester New Police, I beg to forward to you the result of the examination of the men now employed in your force who have been brought before me as candidates for employment in the New Police.
In communicating this result I beg to assure you that I have been actuated by a sincere desire of retaining in the New Service every man who was before employed, and whose conduct, character and physical ability would warrant me in recommending him to the secretary of State for appointment.

In making this selection I have carefully considered the previous service of the men, the opinions given by their officers , their testimonials and every information which has been made available to me. I trust therefore that the result as regards the men in your service will prove satisfactory to you.

I must not however conceal from myself the possibility of my having in some instances been mistaken or misinformed , but these instances , I trust be speedily be detected by me and remedied.

I have the honor (sic) to be Gentlemen
Your most obedient humble servant
Charles Shaw
Chief Commissioner of Police

No 1 Manchester Police Force
The undermentioned men having been elected by the Chief Commissioner to serve in the New Police Force. They are hereby informed that they will hold themselves in readiness to be sworn in at the time and the place which will duly be specified to them previous to Thursday 17th October 1839.

No Name No Name
1 Thomas Worth 17 George Schargill
2 William McGill 24 Peter Rogers
6 Peter Tighe 56                      Edward Ward
7 Charles Little 71 Bartholomew Hickey
9 William Sutton 99 Patrick Kirby
10 Thomas Sumner 102 John Dickson
14 William Jordan 110 William Rigley
23 James Longson 120 John Clarke
28 Peter Bailey 123 Joseph Astle
36 John Richardson 124 John Polton
43 Dennis Pullen 133 Andrew Moon
45 William White 143 Joseph Reed
54 Benjamin Street 150 Alexander Kyle
66 Robert McElroy 159 Rodger Judge
77 John Collier 163 Benjamin Whitehead
83 Joseph Mather 170 John Barton
84 John Williamson 173 Thomas Fazakerley
89 James Thorley 190 Robert Carswell
90 Robert Booth 203 Richard Richardson
98 John Wood 217 Thomas Taylor
100 William Cordingley 218 John Martin
104 John Birtles 233 Joseph Oakes
111 William Parkland 237 John Halton
112 James Kirk 277 Peter Street
122 William Simmons 281 Friend Irvine
125 John Hope 20 Thomas Glover
126 George Barlow 86 Thomas Naylor
132 George Bond - Samuel Bennett
134 John Holmes 137 John Shaw
108 George Butterworth 59 Robert Jones
136 William Holmes 208  John Smith
140 William Sykes - James Glass
146 Charles Brereton - Patrick Lynn
148 John Collier 155  Robert Dunn 
149 John Mabury [Maybury] 226 John Cottingham
153 John Buckley 250 Joseph Shaw 
31 Edward Clegg 88 John Parkinson
158 William Howard 241 James Brankley 
160 Richard Cooper 258 John Porter
164 William Aldred 64 Thomas Pickering  
172 John Downes 79 Soloman Turner
175 John Sumner 5 Thomas Taylor 
176 George Beckett 3 R F Joddrell
177 Samuel Brierly 93 Owen Cahey     
178 John Hadfield 8 Patrick Lord
181 Thomas Brown 11 John Heyes
182 James Lawton 12 Matthew Rogerson
191 Elijah Radcliffe 15 William Taylor   
192 Peter McHugh 39 William Paul
194 Edward Brooks 48 Charles Plant
214 Samuel Crank 52 Edward Robbins
216 Samuel Lamb 57 Francis Beamish      
221 Samuel Taylor 106 Colin Kenny
224 James Redford 117 Thomas Lee
245 Robert Taylor 121 Thomas Walker
247 John Harvey 127 William Lee
252 Jonas Bradley 129 John Houghton       
253 James Bradbury 131 Joseph Kirklain
255 James Gilhooley 141 William Glenn
256 William Renshaw 74 Frederick Rouse
260 John Waddington 105 Thomas Lancaster
261 Thomas Lamb 161 John Parkes   
262 Thomas Partington 166 Isaaiah Timperley
268 John Fielding 168 Charles Wilson
271 John Barnett 169 Joseph McKee
280 David [McSwiney] 174 Samuel Love
283 George Jackson 183 Ernest Whitworth
81 John Hayhurst 184 John Armstrong
289 Daniel Lytton 185 William Hassall
290 Robert Boyes 193 John Blagden
291 John Dollaghan 195  John Heywood
292 George Davies 196 William Henderson
293  Samuel Rawston 199 John Charlton
210 John Murphy 201 John Goodier
147 Edward Roberts 204 James Stott
96 Ernest Briggs 242 Samuel Bolton
151 James Rose 230 Peter Kinsey
239 Enoch Wynne 240 Thomas Beattie
244 Thomas Holland    

No 2 Manchester Borough Police Force
The Chief Commissioner of Police is unavoidably constrained to dispense with the services of the constables contained in the following list who are now in the employ of the Borough Watch Committee but in accordance with the Chief Commissioner's original intention these men 73 in number are placed upon a supplementary list from whence they may be chosen to fill the vacancies which may from time to time occur in the New Police Force.

No Name No Name
257 Joseph Webb 278 John Green
259 Samuel Elam 30  William Baxter     
264 Edward Wilson 38 Samuel Spence
265 John Haughton 219 Edward Develin
270 Edward Harwood - John Wicks
274 Henry Emery 234 Samuel Twigge
287 Joseph Wooley - James Pixton
107 David Daniels 242  John Priddon       
27 James Smith 49 John Heaton
26 John Lowe 63 James Redford
67 Timothy Dailey 70 William McMaster
69 Ralph Cottam 128 John Lythgoe
47 Samuel Hewitt 206 Matthew White
75 Benjamin Simpson 21 Will Wakefield
78 Henry Rose 65 Philip Shannon
116 William Bowker 87 George Woodruff           
130 George Booth 109 John Wentworth
145 William Longden 120 Will Hannah
202 George Smith 115 Joseph Davies
223 Hugh McCabe 171 Robert Taylor
- Peter Kettle 61 Samuel Knox
- Richard Creamer 211 Peter Arnold
- Thomas Lanceley 62 James Dale
- George Evans 113 Isaac Hobson
- William Harwood 235  William Jardine                
- Joseph Littlewood 130 James Schofield
82 Denis Moran 19 Anthony Ashworth
229 Thomas Coyne 16 Edward Hayes
276 Michael Reed 92 William Constantine
257 Phillip Scallon 142 Thomas Egan
55 John Jones 152 Dennis Birtwisle
267 Samuel Belfield 72  Matthew Wood
212 John Evans 248 W H Eckersley
53 Edward Roach 266  Stewart Mitchell
- Charles Matthews - Dennis Ryan
- Thomas Grimshaw 165 C B Strong
139  Lawrence [O'Neil]    

No 3 Manchester Borough Police Force
The following men having been found unfit by the surgeon for the service of the police they are hereby informed that they are inadmissible into that force.

No Name No Name
18 John Hancock 94  Robert Boyle
51 Henry Knight 103 Thomas Dalton
58 Richard Brown 232  John Minshull
25 Squire G  Wovenden
[Previously spelt Woolfenden]
34  George Cage
263 John Carter 225  Thomas Harrison
279 Nathaniel Aspinall 288  John Burgess
- John Tyson 35  J S Combs
37 John Archer 68  Lewis Lipsett
114 John Cartmill 272  Thomas Wybrant
180 Joseph Sutcliffe 195 John Foggerty
205 Joseph Lemon 4 John Dutton
50 John Mills


No 4 Manchester Borough Police Force
The following men having neglected (though duly warned) to attend the medical examination of the surgeon they are hereby informed that they are inadmissible into the New Police Force.

No Name No Name
187 Henry Wilson 73  Samuel Pollard
275 John Loftus 157  Isaac Nadin
282 John Massey 13  Joseph Little
215 John Crankshaw 40  Francis Hutchin
243 Luke Howarth 33  John Toomey
204 Thomas Hazlehurst - John Butler
286 Philip Ryan - Henry Hayes
108 George Butterworth    

That as soon as convenient to the Head Constable, the Police Constables contained in the above list No 1 be summonsed to attend at one of the police stations, for the purpose of having read to them the communication received from Mr Charles Shaw, the Chief Commissioner of Police in reference to their appointment under him; and that in addition to reading such communication the Head constable at the same time inform them, that in consequence of such appointment their service will not be required after the 16th day of October.

That the Head Constable be also directed to summon the Police Constables contained in the above list No 2 for the purpose of having read to them the communication received from Mr Charles Shaw, the Chief Commissioner of Police in reference to them; and in addition to reading such communication he at the same time inform them that their service will not be required by this committee after Wednesday 16th October., and also that a further communication will be made to them in reference to compensation of notice.

That the Head Constable be also directed to summon the Police Constables contained in the above list No 3 for the purpose of having read to them the communication received from Mr Charles Shaw, the Chief Commissioner of Police in reference to them; and in addition to reading such communication he at the same time inform them that their service will not be required by this committee after Wednesday 16th October, and also that four weeks wages (in lieu of notice) will be paid to them, commencing from Tuesday 15th October,

That the Head Constable be also directed to summon the Police Constables contained in the above list No 4 for the purpose of having read to them the communication received from Mr Charles Shaw, the Chief Commissioner of Police in reference to them; and in addition to reading such communication he at the same time inform them that their service will not be required by this committee after Wednesday 16th October.

Meeting 21st October 1839

Letter Received:
The undersigned Inspectors of the Borough Police beg most respectfully to submit to the consideration of the Chairman and the Gentlemen of the Watch Committee the following statement;
that we have been in the service of the present Establishment from its commencement and that we have always endeavoured to perform the duties entrusted to us, so as to meet the approbation of our superiors and we trusted that our services would be continued , whilst such was our conduct. We are therefore much surprised and hurt to find our names are omitted in the appointments made by the Chief Commissioner Sir Charles Shaw, and that our services are to be dispensed with at a month's notice.
Many if us have been connected with police business in the Town for nearly six years thus increasing the difficulties of obtaining situations in any other pursuits. We again therefore beg to hope that our case will be found to merit the favourable consideration of the Watch Committee.
William Kirkwood, Joshua Brown, Charles Dale, George Pierce, John Davies, John Madders, John Samuels, Frederick Mainwaring and Matthew Weddell.

That the consideration of the above letter be postponed until the next meeting of the Committee.

Meeting 28th October 1839

That one weeks wages be paid to the four inspectors who have appeared before the committee – and also Inspector Weddell who did not appear – and that the Gentlemen before deputed to see Sir Charles Shaw be requested to make enquiries as to the possibility of any of the above named parties being employed in the New Police Force.

That the wages of James Seddon for the past week be paid to him and he be informed that his services will no longer be required by this committee.

Meeting 31st October 1839

That the late Inspectors Madders, Brown, Weddell and Mainwaring be informed that in consequence of their having declined to accept employment under the Chief Commissioner of Police no further allowance will be made by this Committee.

That the wages of James Smith clerk in the Police Office be paid him up to the 31st inst. He having been engaged by Sir Charles Shaw from this day.

Sir Charles Shaw having stated that he should not use the Night and Day Staves, Ricks, and Lanterns furnished to him by this Committee.

That the same be forthwith obtained from him and placed in the custody of the Town clerk for safe keeping.

Meeting 8th November 1839

That David Conn late PC 179 in the Borough Police Force whose name is omitted from the lists sent in by Sir Charles Shaw, and being still unemployed, be allowed and paid 3 weeks wages from the 17th October last.

That a further allowance of one week's pay from the 31st October last be made to such of the men in List No 2 sent in by Sir Charles Shaw as have not yet been employed by Sir Charles Shaw or any other part; and also that the nine men in such list who have obtained employment since the 31st Ult. Be paid for the number of days they have been unemployed since that date.

Meeting 6th January 1840

The undersigned having been deputed by the Watch committee to obtain from Sir Charles Shaw such information in reference to the number and general arrangement of the present Police Force as appears to necessary in order to enable the Watch Committee to perform the duties devolving upon them in consequence of the Resolution of the Council on the 22nd November last.
That the present Police Force appointed by Sir Charles Shaw the Chief Commissioner under the provisions of the 2nd and 3rd Victoria cap 87 consists, including officers and men of 383 individuals viz: 64 Officers and 319 Police Constables.
That the officers include:
1 The Chief Commissioner, 1 Chief Superintendent, 1 Chief Clerk, 1 Receiver or Treasurer, 4 Superintendents, 9 Inspectors, 16 Superior Sergeants, 31 Sergeants 64 total.

That the following are the locations of the present Police Stations an Lock-ups viz:
Lock-up and Police Office: Town Hall, King St.
Station House: Ridgefield.
Station House + Lock-up: Oldham Road.
A lock-up: Kirby Street.
Station House: Great Jackson Street, Hulme.
Lock-up: Town Hall: Chorlton upon Medlock.
Station and Division House: Allum Street, Ancoats.

The situations of the present Police Stations and Lock-ups are considered by Sir Charles Shaw to decidedly inconvenient, and other and more convenient places will be selected so soon as he can obtain them,and when fixed upon and occupied Sir Charles intends to give public notice, and that at such places all information as to Felonies may be given and the assistance of the police obtained.
Notice was given on or about the 17th December last that thereafter the name of no candidate for admission to the Police would be enrolled, if the party applying be above 40 years of age, under 5 feet 7 inches in height without his shoes, and unless he can read and write perfectly, is free from bodily complaint, of a strong constitution and generally intelligent.
On forming his police Sir Charles Shaw appointed 303 police Constables who had previously served in the different Police Establishments within the Borough. Of this number 245 still remain in the force, 58 having resigned or been dismissed, and of which number 2/3 have resigned.

That there are at the present time 80 Police Constables on beats employed in permanent day duty – which commences at 6 o'clock in the morning and terminates at 9 o'clock in the evening: 40 of whom go on duty at 6 o'clock, and remain until 9 o'clock; when they are relieved by the remaining 40, who continue on duty till 2 o'clock:- the first relief of 40 then go on duty at 2 o'clock and remain until 9 o'clock in the evening:- the second relief of 40 also return at 5 o'clock and remain until 9 o'clock: so that during the last four hours – viz from 5 o'clock until 9 o'clock there are 80 Police Constable performing duty throughout the Borough.
Besides the above there are on duty during the day at several stations 6 Police Constables, who are relieved by six others; also 5 police Constables engaged at the Borough Court, and one on Special Duty; and in addition 3 employed as messengers and 1 as Coroner's Officer, making a total of 22 Police Constables in addition to the 80 or a total of 102 Police Constables.

There are at present during the night time from 9 o'clock in the evening until 6 o'clock in the morning 136 Police Constables on beats throughout the Borough – the largest of which beats may be paced on the first round, when the doors and windows are or ought to be examined, in 45 minutes, and the shortest of such beats in 16 minutes or thereabouts: the average time for going around the beats being about 28 minutes.

In addition to the 136 Police Constables on Beats, there are also 72 Police constables employed during the night as a patrol performing their duty in the following manner, by which it will be seen there are at all times 50 Police Constables or thereabouts on duty as patrol in addition to the 136 men on Beats.
Thus 50 of the Patrol go out at 9 o'clock in the evening leaving 22 at the Station; 25 of such 50 come in at 12 o'clock:- about half an hour before they return, however, viz:- at half past eleven the 22 first left go out:- at I o'clock the 25 out of the 50 come in, when the 25 who came in first go out and return at 3 o'clock:- the 22 who went out at half past 11 o'clock come in at 5o'clock, and at half past four o'clock the 25 men in the Station House go out.
That this patrol is marched about under the charge of a superior and other Officers:- and on arriving at such point as is fixed upon at the time, is dispersed throughout the District with orders to re-assemble at another point. After re-assembling the same process is repeated of dispersion throughout another District and re-assembling at another point; and this is continued during the time that each section of the patrol continues on duty. The Patrol walk through the Districts at a more rapid pace than the Police Constables engaged on Beats.
At six o'clock the Patrol all come in and the day duty commence.
There are also on reserve at the four police Stations 9 Police Constables making with the 130 Police Constables on Beats, the 72 Police Constables as Patrol, and 102 Police police Constables before stated to be engaged on day duty a total of 319 Police Constables the number of the present Force.
Of the officers the Chief Superintendent, Chief Clerk, Receiver, 3 Superintendents, 6 Inspectors, 11 Superior Sergeants are considered on duty both day and night – the 6 Inspectors and 11 Superior Sergeants being divided into 2 Reliefs – 10 Sergeants are employed on day duty and 18 Sergeants on night duty. - There are also engaged at the Court 1 Superintendent 3 Superior Sergeants and 1 Sergeant: and on special duty 3 Inspectors, 2 Superior Sergeants making a total including the Chief Commissioner, a total of 64 Officers.

Any deficiency in the Police Constables on Beats during during the night either from sickness or any other cause, is supplied from the patrol force, the number of which is therefore continually varying whilst the number of the men on the Beats always remains the same.
In case of fire the whole of the patrol are instructed immediately to repair to the spot, the Police Constables on Beats giving the alarm to the firemen on their respective rounds. The assistance of the police either by night or by day may be obtained by meeting with a Police Constable on duty or by application to one of the Police Stations or Lock-ups.

Sir Charles Shaw states that he considers the number of Police Constables now employed on day duty quite inadequate to the wants of the Borough, and too limited to permit any satisfactory arrangement being made by which the public may , with the dispatch desirable obtain the assistance of a Police Constable upon any sudden emergency.

That the expenses of the present Police Force will be between £21,500 and £22,000 per annum.

A copy of a letter addressed by Sir Charles Shaw to the Mayor upon the character and efficiency of the present police Force is hereunto annexed.

In conclusion we feel that it is due to Sir Charles Shaw to acknowledge the courtesy with which we have at all times been received by him, and the readiness with which he has answered all questions put to him in relation to his Police Force.

Dated 2nd day of January 1840

Signed: William Neild, James Murray, James Hampson, Thomas Hopkins.

Since the preparation of the foregoing report Sir Charles Shaw has stated that he has during the last four days (and will so continue unless it should appear desirable again to change) worked the patrol in the way before described from 9 o'clock until 12 o'clock at night only, at which hour the men forming the Patrol are sent to act as Police Constables on Beats and so continue until 6 o'clock; so that at present from 12 o'clock there are (in addition to the 136 Police Constables on Beats) the numbers who that evening constitute the Patrol also on duty on Beats.

Letter from Sir Charles Shaw to the Mayor (previously mentioned).

Police Office, Town Hall

Manchester Dec 10th 1839

My Dear Sir,

With reference to our conversation on 6th December last upon the subject of Police matters. I have the pleasure of enclosing to you the answers attached to the queries which you left with one upon that occasion. I can only say I trust they may be considered at least sufficiently explanatory if not satisfactory.

Having thus acquainted you with the general detail of the arrangements which I have after mature reflection in every case found it necessary to adopt, I have thought that it would not be inexpedient to take this opportunity of bringing likewise to your knowledge , the various and vexatious difficulties which have been thrown in my way since my arrival in Manchester.

The results of the opposition have been to circulate reports of every possible nature, calculated to cause either a misapprehension of the measures I have from time to time adopted, or to uphold them to public disapproval. Had I therefore in any degree permitted my mind to have been influenced by the conflicting advice and criticisms, even of those who were, I verily believe, purely actuated by a feeling on general interest for the welfare of Manchester, I should have been in all probability now, where I had commenced, and perhaps by this time have really merited some portion of that “misunderstanding” which has so industriously been spread abroad.

I therefore my dear Sir request your attention to the following sketch of the organisation of the Police Force, and of its working from the commencement to the present period.

Upon my arrival in Manchester I found three district Police Establishments, but my mind had been fully made up (as it is now) carefully to avoid entertaining personal feelings either in favour or otherwise of any party, but to be guided by a fine sense of duty in every instance.

The numerical strength of these Forces I found to amount to somewhere about 600 Constables under no general control, and possessing no intercommunity of information, or any unity of action. There numbers under the circumstances appeared to me to have been more than sufficient; I am however convinced that that two thirds of their numbers would, if not immediately, eventually be necessary for the formation of an efficient Police Force. The sums however expended upon these establishments I found to be about £40,000, while to the contrary the means at my disposal were £16,500, a sum which it must be confessed , is obviously inadequate, and which necessarily prevented my competing in a numerical point of view with these united Establishments.

Under the circumstances I was constrained to proceed with extreme caution, and my operations were commenced by selecting from the various forces as merely as circumstances would admit, a proportionate number from each;and in making this selection I was thrown entirely upon the candour and good faith of their respective officers, as to their previous conduct and merits; the Officers themselves likewise, who had served in these forces, were selected by me with a due regard to their qualifications and with reference to the information I obtained respecting them from their Superiors, but in some instances it is true contrary to my opinion and misgivings as to their fidelity or zeal, and these , I appointed purely with the view of yielding (to the utmost limits consistent with my duty) to the declared wishes of their former employers.

Upon the 17th of October last, therefore, the day fixed upon by me for entering upon my duties as Chief Commissioner, I swore in and embodied the comparatively small number of 200 Constables; thus at once, making an unfavourable impression in the eyes of the public at the first outset, an unavoidable circumstance, which however every man of the world will allow is a disadvantage difficult to overcome.

But this Force having been placed in active operation, in the course of ten days, I found that it would be necessary to increase its numbers and accordingly 50 additional Constables were appointed. In a few days after, 50 more were added, and these together formed a force (as it is at present constituted) of 300 Constables exclusive of Officers.

Pending these arrangements the working of the Police Force for the first month ie from the 17th October to the 17th November even under all these manifold and striking disadvantages, has not been unsatisfactory, but on the contrary, its daily increasing efficiency has inspired me with every confidence with every confidence, and I take the liberty of directing your attention to the grounds upon which I have formed so favourably an opinion.

I find then, by a reference to the public records of the three former Police Establishments in Manchester, the number of prisoners taken by them conjunctively, during four months, viz from 16th June to 16th October of this year was 4936, averaging per a month 1234 of which number (4963) there were discharged by the Magistrates 3184 cases, and committed for trial 1752, being an average of committals per month of 438. The President Police Force (which I have before stated consisted only for the last ten days of 300 constables) has during one month ie from 17th October to 17th November apprehended 928 criminals of whom, 492 were discharged and the remainder committed for trial viz 436-this leaving a balance of 2 in favour of the above three united establishments, which as I before stated consisted of 600 constables. And may I be permitted here to draw your attention to the great number of prisoners taken by the old forces , as compared with the number committed for trial, viz less than ¼ , whereas the taken by the new police nearly ½ were committed for trial. And surely this services some little discernment and discretion on the part of the New Force.

I was however further gratified by an enquiry of another nature, to which I had been prompted, by vague rumours that had come to my knowledge , of the “alarming increase” of informations lodged at the various stations of the present force, regarding robberies, which had been committed since its commencement.

Upon a reference to the records however I find that the district information of this nature lodged at the three former police Establishment in four months ie from 10th June to 16th October this year amounted to 542, averaging per month over 182 . The number of informations lodged at the various stations of the present force from 17th October to 17th November was 143 and may I here take the opportunity of stating that during that month, I have directed to be sent 68 letters to proprietors of houses who had left their property exposed to plunder by leaving their warehouse doors and windows open.

In conclusion I deem it a duty which I owe to myself to draw your special attention to

the very responsible situation I have placed myself in, by appointing a Force so much more numerous than the means at my disposal (£16,500) will warrant. I have however been led to take this step by the universal opinions expressed by the inhabitants, that the force which I at first embodied, and which was adapted to the means at my disposal was totally inadequate for the protection of the Borough. With this opinion I entirely agreed and I rely with confidence on the cordial support of the public when it becomes needful to appeal to them for a supply to meet the deficiency which must necessarily occur by continuing the present establishment.

Charles Shaw

The next few meetings deal with the objections to a Bill before Parliament to amend the Act For The Establishment of County and District Constables. Eventually the offending clauses were removed from the Bill after representation by the Council. The last meeting to be minuted was dated 26th May 1840 and after this there was a gap with a meeting which was only dated 1840-41. This meeting recorded the election of the members of the Watch Committee for the following year and nothing more.

The next meeting to be recorded is dated 23rd September 1842

On 25th May 1842 the powers of the Police Commissioners were transferred by deed of transfer to Manchester Borough Council

However other sources state that Manchester Borough Council did not retake overall control of the Police Force via the Watch Committee until 1st October 1842

The story of the Manchester Borough Police  continues here.




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