Poaching and Petty Thieving in St Albans

A Talk by Chris Reynolds

The Stratton Family - 1865

Night Poaching

THE LATE POACHING AFFRAY. - Joseph Stratton was brought up in custody, charged with being concerned in a poaching affray, on the grounds of the late Sir Thomas Seabright, in November, 1863, when a murderous attack was made upon a keeper named Burgess. It will be remembered that in March, 1864, four prisoners, named Levi Welch, George Bone, Wm. Stevens, and Thomas Potton, were convicted at the Beds. Assizes for this offence, and that this man (the prisoner), who had taken the most prominent part in the attack upon the keeper, was not to be found, he having absconded. The evidence of Burgess was again taken, as also was that of another keeper named Hawes, both men positively swearing to the prisoner. He was committed to take his trial at the Assizes. The man was apprehended by Police-sergeant Neville at St Albans on Tuesday, the 28th ult.

Bedfordshire Times 21st March 1865

The Bedford Prison Register records that he was 27 years old, and had been in St Albans prison 18 times, and Hertford prison once. He was sentenced to 5 years penal Servitude and transferred to Leicester County Goal