HC Deb 15 February 1870 vol 199 c326

said, he would beg to ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, Whether any steps hare been taken, by a more efficient organization and disposal of the Metropolitan Police, to prevent the occurrence with impunity of aggravated disturbances like those which took place at Highbury on the morning of the 6th November last?


, in reply, said, that in consequence of what had happened on the 5th of November, 1868, there were reasons for apprehending some disturbances on the part of the frequenters of Highbury Barn on the same day in 1869. A number of police were, therefore, told off to prevent such disturbances. Unfortunately, a great fire broke out in the immediate neighbourhood, and immense numbers of persons went to see the fire, and among them the police thought that the rioters were likely to be found, and the police consequently made off to the fire. This did not prove to be the case as they expected, and a number of riotous young men made their appearance in the streets from the gardens of Highbury Barn, and perpetrated outrages. Various attempts were afterwards made to identify these persons, but, he was sorry to say, without success. Since that time, whenever there were any festivities at Highbury Barn, an additional force of police was posted there. That was the case on the previous night, and he was happy to say that no riot took place.