HC Deb 21 June 1898 vol 59 cc956-7
MR. D. A. THOMAS (Merthyr Tydvil)

I beg to ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether he is aware that, during Friday and Saturday last some of the soldiers stationed at Mountain Ash became intoxicated and created a disturbance in the streets; that ladies were grossly insulted, many free fights took place, and that belts were freely used; that eventually the police interfered, and endeavoured to prevail upon the soldiers to return to their quarters, but in vain; whether there has been any riotous conduct among any section of the populace at Mountain Ash or among any of the inhabitants (50,000) of the Aberdare Valley since the coal lockout began; and whether he will suggest to the proper authorities the advisability of augmenting the police force during the stay of the military, so that the normal peaceful condition of the district may be maintained?


It is reported that a slight disturbance, due to the misconduct of a few soldiers, took place at Mountain Ash on Saturday evening between the troops quartered there and the civil population. Steps have been taken to prevent any similar disturbance. It is the fact, I understand, that there has been no actual display of riotous conduct in the Aberdare Valley, but very grave apprehensions of disturbance were at one time entertained by the responsible authorities, and there is good reason to suppose that it was only the arrival of the military which prevented it.