Petty sessions - haycarter's unhappy position

Hertfordshire Mercury, 9th November 1907


Benjamin Robinson, a haycarter of Hunsdon, was summoned for riding asleep without reins at Cheshunt, on October 20th.

Defendant:   I suppose I shall have to plead guilty.

P.C. Little said at 3.40 a.m. while on duty at Turner’s Hill he saw a cart standing in the centre of the road and found  defendant lying asleep in the bottom of the cart, wrapped up with rugs. Defendant told him one could not expect to keep awake all night.

The Clerk : What have you to say this time ?

Defendant: Blowed if I know, I have been here so many times. (Laughter)

The Clerk : You cannot invent a fresh excuse ?

Defendant said he had been up all night when he was stopped.

The Clerk : How long had you been at work before you were stopped ?

Defendant :  I am always at work. I have not had time this morning to wash myself. I seldom go to bed at all. As soon as I get back from a journey the horses are taken out for two or three hours, and I have to load up and go off again. I was at Wood Green at ten o’clock and got home at seven in the morning, and then had to come to the Court. I don’t take hay to the market, but have to sell it where I can for my master. I never go to bed during the week.

The police stated it was defendant’s 28th appearance, and he had not paid the fine imposed at the last Court.

Defendant :  At times I am glad to take my boots off, as my feet ache so, being on them all day. I must sleep sometimes.

A Police Sergeant said he had found defendant in his cart asleep several times with his boots off, and had sent him on his way.

The Chairman said defendant had a long list of convictions against him, and the public must be protected. He would be fined 2s. 6d. and costs, and he thought defendant’s master should pay the fine in consequence of the latter working him in such a persistent manner. Such a practice was not fit for man or beast.



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