Minutes Thu 29 Dec 1774

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Thu 29 Dec 1774


The first General Meeting of the Commissioners held at the George Inn, Stroud. Attended by the Commissioners and the Subscribers. The sum of £20,000 having been subscribed in order to build the Navigation.
The following officers chosen – Benjamin Grazebrook, first Clerk and Keeper of the Company’s Books and Undersurveyor. Rich Hall, second Clerk and Undersurveyor at Framilode and Keeper of the Account of the Tonnage. Mr Grazebrook and Mr Hall each paid £50 per annum. Mr Jn Colborne, Attorney, appointed Treasurer.
The half-yearly General Assemblies fixed. The first to be on 6 July 1775. The second on 4 January 1776. All half yearly meetings to be held on the 1st Thursday in July and 1st Thursday in January at 11.00 am.
The method for choosing the Directors to be as follows – 2 Inspectors and 2 Scrutineers to be appointed. Each subscriber to prepare a list of nominees of no more than thirteen names nor less than 9, the Inspectors are to write on the outside the number of votes the proprietor has, the list then to be placed in a bag or container for that purpose. The lists to be counted, in secret, by the Scrutineers. The votes are to be listed in columns and the original lists destroyed. The Chairman to have a casting vote in the event of any ties. The first nine to be appointed Directors for the coming year. Mr Coleman and Mr Knight appointed Inspectors and Mr Benjamin Grazebrook and Mr Richard Hall appointed Scrutineers.
The following Committee Members were reported as returned by the Chairman, W Dallaway – W Dallaway, W Knight, J Wathen, T Lewis, G Hawker, J Winchcombe, J Hollings, T Baylis, T White, R Ellis, R Aldridge, J Hawker, W Shurmer.

Verbatim text

Stroudwater Navigation
At a meeting of the Commissioners for making the Stroud Water River Navigable from Framiload to Wallbridge held by Adjournment at the George in Stroud Dec^br 29^th 1774. The Subscribers to certain Articles made for Raising the Sum of 20,000£ in order to Execute the said Navigation were appointed Undertakers thereof by and in consequence of a Previous Advertisement for a general Meeting of the Commissioners and Subscribers, did Proceed on the Said 29^th Day of Dec^br aforesaid (and according to the Tenure of the foremention'd Articles) to Choose the following Officers. ~~~~
[1^st Clerk] Mr. Ben: Grazebrook~~As first Clerk, Register and Keeper of the Companies Books at Stroud, and Undersurveyer; and appointed him always to attend the General Meetings of the Proprietors, and all the Meetings of the Directors, and otherwise to conform to the
Duty of the Clerks office as described by the Aforesaid Articles.~~~
[2^d Clerk] Mr. Rich. Hall~~As Second Clerk, and Undersurveyer at Framiload, and hereafter to be keeper of the Acc^ts of the Tonnage there: And apointed him always to Attend the General Meetings of the Proprietors, and all Meetings of the Directors, and otherwise to conform to the Duty of the Clerks Office as described by the said Articles. They Furthermore Appointed that the said Clerks Mr. Ben: Grazebrook, and Mr. Rich. Hall should [Clerks Salary] receive a Salary for the the same of 50£/Annum Each to commence on the 1st Day of January next.~~~
[Treasurer] Also at the said meeting M^r Jn^o Colborne Attorney was Chosen Treasurer for the year Ensuing.~~~
[half yearly Assemblys when] And the half yearly General Assemblys of the Proprietors where fix'd. The first to be held on the first Thursday in July next which will be the 6^th of July 1775 and the 2^d on the first Thursday in January which will be the 4^th July 1776, then to Chuse the Committee of Directors for that year, and that all the half yearly Meetings to be held hereafter are to be on the first Thursday in July and the first Thursday in January at Eleven o Clock in the forenoon of which the Directors for the time being are to take care that the said Meetings be advertised beforehand in the Gloster Journal.~~~
They did also resolve that the Offices of Treasurer or Clerk of the Company are Incompetent with the Office of Director.~~~
{Committee ~~~ how Chosen] And that the following should be the manner of Regulating the Ballot for the Choice of a Committee of Directors to Execute the Stroud Water Navigation for the Year 1775 who are to continue in their Office till the 4^th Day of Jan^ry 1776.~~~
In the first place two Inspectors are to be appointed -- and also two Scrutineers for the following purposes~~~Every Subscriber who has signed the Articles, is to make out a List of the names of such of the Subscribers whom he approves of for Directors, to be plainly written, this List is to contain no more than Thirteen Names nor Less than Nine, but if more than Thirteen or Less than Nine,the List is to be totally Void, and none of the Names mentioned on that List to be taken any Notice of bty the Scrutineers. When this List is made out by the Proprietor it is to be carefully folded up as to Conceal the Names written in it -- and the Proprietor is to bring this List, thus made up to the Inspectors who are in his or her presence to Write upon it the Number of Votes that the Proprietor is Intitled to, either as the Subscriber in his own Name, or as Gaurdian for Minors, or as Proxy by Virtue of Powers regularly registered on the Companies Books, according to the Articles, and when this Note or List is Superscribed with the number of Votes on the out side thereof by the Inspectors it shall be putt into a Bagg or any other convenience provided to receive and Contain the said Votes.~~~
When all the Subscribers or Proprietors present have made out their Lists and delivered them in the manner above Mentioned, the Names of those who bring their Lists being entered down by the Inspector together with the Number of Votes assigned by them to each Voter, to prevent Imposition and for the purpose hereafter Mentioned, then the two Scrutineers shall take the Bagg or other convenience Provided for the Reception of the Votes, and Retire with it into another Room; and in there by themselves, in Secret, open the Lists, and every one of them, and under different Columns, at the head of which is to be sett down the Name of each individual Person which shall be found in all the Lists or Votes delivered to them (except such who have put down more than Thirteen or less than Nine which as before directed shall be Null and Void, as if none such had been delivered in;) and under Each of these Columns shall insert in Figures the Number of Votes according as they have been superscribed by the Inspectors on the outside of the said Lists. and after having Faithfully thus Collected and sett down all and every one of the Votes, they shall destroy the Notes that Contained them; and shall return to the Chairman the Genuine List in Columns under the Respective Names both their their own Names to the Return witnessing it to be an exact and Faithful List of the votes given at this election and which if it should be required they shall Confirm by Oath.~~~
When the return is thus made the Chairman and the Inspectors shall in Publick cast up the Votes in the Columns under each Name and shall declare the Names of the Nine who have the greatest number or Majority of Votes to be duely Elected Members of the Committee of Directors for the Ensueing Year~~and if it should so happen that any two or more shou^d have the same Number of Votes, and there shou'd be a ~~~ Necessity of giving a Casting Vote, the Chairman by adding his own Vote to the Column or Columns shall determine the Choice. When the first Nine who have a Majority thus declared for them, are elected~~~ Then out of the Remainder of the Persons Voted for, as they stand highest in Number of Votes in the Return made by the Scrutineers, shall be Selected one, two, three or Four as it may happen, but not exeeding Four Persons of them; and who appear to have at Least Five Votes then given them over, and above, and besides the Number they were allowed to have by the Inspectors List before directed to be taken by them, and these shall be added to the former Nine, and declare duely Elected for the ensueing Year; and if in this case it shall happen that two or more have equal Votes; (their own not to ^be Reckon'd) and there should be a necessity for a Casting Vote, it shall be determined as before by the Chairman. But if there are no more, thus Qualified by having Five Votes besides their own in the List of Votes return^d~~Then only the first Nine before mentioned Shall Constitute the Committee of Directors for the Ensueing Year and all other Elections, or Questions to be determinedby Ballot at General Meetings or Assemblys of the Proprietors shall proceed in like manner and on the like Principals as are here directed, and be only Varied as the Case particularly requires which Variation shall be determined before the Ballot begins.~~~
In pursuance of the aforesaid Prescribed Method for Regulating the ballot~~Mr. Jn^o Colborne and Mr. Francis Knight were appointed Inspectors and Mr. Ben: Grazebrook and Mr. Rich^d Hall were appointed Scrutineers for the present Election and the following Return was made by the Chairman~~~
Stroud Dec^br 29^th 1774~~~I declare the following Persons duely Elected as a Committee of Directors for the Stroud water Navigation for the year 1775.
Will^m Dallaway Thomas Baylis
Will^m Knight Thomas White
Joseph Wathen Robert Ellis
Tim^hy Lewis Rich^d Aldridge
George Hawker John Hawker.
James (?Hinchcombe) Will^m Shurmer
John Hollings
Return^d (??) Will^m Dallaway Chairman
And the Adjournment of the Meeting of the Directors is to Friday the 6^th of January 1775 at 5 oClock in the afternoon at the George in Stroud.
Ben: Grazebrook Clerk

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