Minutes Tue 21 Mar 1865

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Tue 21 Mar 1865


Stroud Gas Company applied for reduction of rent of £5 per mile for use of towing path. Resolved that Proprietors take no step to prejudice legal right to full rent but the Clerk was instructed to give receipt for full rent on payment of £1 per mile per annum.
Captain Hunt attended meeting to complain of water coming past Stratford Mills passed on to his pond at Lodgemore Mills in sudden flushes. Mr Lane, tenant of mills, used Painswick Stream as a canal with locks. Detailed statement of Mr Hawker, late Clerk to Company, explaining history of water supply from Painswick stream read and entered into minutes. Proprietors to confer with Mr Lane to see if grounds of complaint can be removed, while retaining rights of Proprietors.

Verbatim text

At a Meeting of the Committee of the Stroudwater Navigation held at the Committee Room at Wallbridge on Tuesday the 21^st day of March 1865
Present: M^r J H Warman, M^r W W Kearsey Chairman, F Eycott, J T Fisher, G H A Beard, C H Fisher.
M^r L W Winterbotham attended on behalf of the Stroud Gas C^o with the object of obtaining a Resolution for the reduction of the Rent of £5 per Mile payable by the Gas C^o for the use of the Towing Paths.
Resolved that the Proprietors take no step by Resolution or otherwise to prejudice their legal right to the full Rent when they may choose to require it by that the Clerk be instructed to give a receipt for the full rent on payment of £1 per Mile per annum until he be otherwise instructed.
Captain Hunt having attended the Meeting to complain of the Water coming past the Stratford Mills having been passed on to his pond at Lodgemore Mills in sudden flushes by reason of M^r Lane the Tenant of these Mill using the Painswick stream as a Canal with Locks. A statement form M^r C Hawker, the late Clerk of the Canal Company, bearing on this question was read and ordered to be entered on the Minutes.
Copy of M^r Hawker;s Statement: Cheltenham March 14^th
"The Stroudwater Navigation Canal was opened for Traffic of Vessels about the year 1776 or 77 and an account of it given in the Gloucester Journal about that date which should still be in the Office at Wallbridge. By the Act of Parliament granted for making this Canal, full power, without payment, is given to the Company to take the water coming down from Stratford Mill to Lodgemoor Mill pont to supply the two upper levels of the Canal sufficient for the Navigation of Vessels, and a Culvert was cut under the Canal to admit the stream to flow into the Mill pond as before, but Floodgates were placed _by the Company_ above the Culvert, and a feeder placed near to allow the water to pass into the Canal, for which purpose the floodgates must be shut down and a person employed by the Company (generally the Lock Keeper at Dudbridge) for shutting down these floodgates when requisite, and opening them again when the water was sufficiently supplied, without the interference of the Mill Owner at Lodgemoor, and such has been the custom down to the present day from the opening of the Canal, without any payment having been made for such use, or ever demanded that I ever heard of.
The Weir was made to allow the water to pass under the Culvert into the Mill pond, in case it should (?), to prevent it over flowing.
M^r Henry Cooke with whom I was very intimately acquainted, and to whom the property at Lodgemoor belonged, and who came into the possession son after the opening of the Canal, considered that the Canal had a right to take the water in the way they were doing and he never obstructed it, _and aobut the year 1801 my Brother George took the Mill and premises at Lodgemoor, and I lived in the House with him until 1811 and assisted him in his business. We knew perfectly well that the Canal Company took the water as described, and never obstructed it. After he became Clerk of the Company until the day of his death in 1843, during which time the same system was pursued, and I entered into the service of the Company at his decease, when it was still continued, and I believe has lasted until this time._ It appears by a minute in the books at our Office that M^r Hunt's Father's Millman knocked the lock off the paddles of the floodgate at our works at Lodgemoor for supplying the water for the Canal, and when the Committee threatened M^r Hunt to take proceedings, he declared it had been done without his knowledge of it, and dismissed the man, and this took place after M^r Hunt had bought the premises, and therefore it existed before he purchased it, and it is very evident the gates were locked down at that time, and have been always, for if the floodgates were kept up at all times, no water could pass through the feeder into the Canal, which would be a most serious loss to the Canal as there is _now_ a very large number of vessels passing up and down the two levels and consequently a good supply of water is required, therefore Capt^n Hunt^s claim must be resisted most determinately, and our right to the use of the water maintained in the same way it has been used, I believe I may say from the opening of the canal. The floodgates do not stand on any of his property - nor is any of his passed over to get to them, for the land on the outside of his Garden Wall belongs to the Company, and has been used as such, always. There is a small plot of ground crossed over belonging to the Gannicox property, for which the C^o pay M^r Withey I believe 2^S/6^d annually. Our Act of Parliament gives us the power in case of the shortness of water that by giving the Mill Owners a proper notice we can compel them to shut down their Mills and apply the whole of the water for the use of the Canal, on paying the Mill owner so much for every hour of the stoppage, I believe 2^s/6^d each hour and during the time I was Clerk we were obliged to resort to this necessity, and gave M^r Marling notice, but first consulting him what would be the most convenient time for him for us to adopt it."
Cha^s Hawker
Resolved that the Proprietors confer with M^r Lane to see if the ground for the complaint (which appears to be applicable to M^r Lane and not to this Proprietary) can be removed but that none of the rights of the Proprietors be waived or abandoned.
Resolved that the General Half Yearly Meeting of the Proprietors be held on Tuesday the 25^th April next at 2 o'clock and that a Meeting of the Committee be held at ½ past 12 on the same day:
Bills ordered to be paid: £ s d
N A Partridge 1 Qr Salary due March 25: 30..0..0
E Peyton 1 Qr Salary due March 25: 20..0..0
J Burbidge 1 Qr Salary due March 25: 15..0..0
J Burbidge Gratuity Fixtures left at Framilode: 5..0..0
W Coley Auditor: 7..17..6
Income Tax ¼ due Dec^r 20: 23..19..6
J Andrews Smith's Work: 0..6..0

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