HC Deb 19 June 1884 vol 289 cc803-4

asked the Secretary of State for War, Whether his attention has been called to the riotous and disorderly conduct of the Queen's Own Royal Staffordshire Yeomanry at Lich-field on Friday and Saturday last; and, whether he has ordered an investigation?


I have received a Report from the Inspector of Auxiliary Cavalry, who was ordered by the General Officer Commanding the District to investigate the statements which had appeared in some of the newspapers with reference to these occurrences. Lord Ralph Kerr states that as regards the rioting in the streets, and the insubordinate conduct on the part of the Yeomanry, the statements were greatly exaggerated. The Mayor of Lichfield has forwarded to the various newspapers a Resolution, passed at a large meeting of citizens, to the effect— That this meeting desires to express in the strongest possible manner its opinion that the reports which have appeared in the newspapers of to-day and last night of serious riots and disturbances in this city are grossly exaggerated, and ought to be contradicted without delay. The Inspecting Officer reports that on his arrival he ordered a Board of Officers to examine and report on the alleged rioting between the citizens and the Yeomanry. The finding of the Court is that they Are of opinion that there was no riot, as alleged, and that the whole disturbance was confined to what occurred between trooper Smith and the man Ginns, and the attempted arrest of the former. I am not, however, satisfied that the extraordinary charges made in the newspapers have been fully and sufficiently investigated, especially as to the alleged conduct of some of the officers of the regiment, and I have directed a further inquiry to be made into the matter.


Will the noble Marquess also inquire whether, during the Yeomanry week, the magistrates contributed to the peace of the town by allowing the public-houses to be open longer than usual?