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John Bellingham, St Neots, hung 1812.

St Neots Museum, Police Station and Gaol

History of Police Station

The Museum includes a exhibition with accounts of convicted criminals from St Neots:

Frederick Clarke, aged 14, convicted at St Neots Petty Session of poaching two rabbits. Sentence to 14 days hard labour and 12 strokes strokes of the birch.

Emma Gates, aged 13, of Caxton, living in South Street St Neots, convicted 1874 at St Neots Petty Sessions, stealing handkerchief and 1/4lb biscuits value 8d. Sentenced to 21 days imprisonment and 3 years at Reformatory School in Birmingham.

Thomas Gilbert, 19, and George Covill, 17, convicted at Huntingdon Assizes March 1876, of damaging a chaff-cutting machine by putting a stone into it. Judge thought this was a prank and so they were sent to prison for three months with hard labour. Their punishment could have been 7 years imprisonment.

Thomas Dilley, 17, farm labourer from Eynesbury, persistant ‘small-time’ offender. In January 1875 convicted at St Neots Petty Session for theft of 12 1/2lbs of pork. Three months later, after release from prison, convicted of theft of fishing rod and over the next 18th months of thefts of bread, meat and three rabbits. Anne Dilley of Eynesbury, possibly sister, convicted in 1873 of theft of purse plus 5s 6d.

J Williams alias Edward Savage, obtained money by false pretences, 1870. Draper from St Neots convicted at Huntingdon Quarter Sessions. served 4 months in prison.

George Hilderley, 23, sheep stealer, 1876. Carpenter and butcher from Hampshire, living at Eynesbury. Convicted at Huntingdon Quarter Sessions for stealing 2 sheep and one lamb and for ‘obtaining by false pretences 15lbs of meat.’ Sentenced to 5 years penal servitude at Pentonville, plus 5 years supervision (parole).

Jane Pluck, 44, stole £10 securities, 1873. Eynesbury woman convicted at St Neots Petty Sessions. Sentenced to 3 months imprisonment.

Thomas Jackson, 45, stole potatoes, 1870. Farm labourer from eaton Ford, convicted at St Neots Petty Sessions of theft of half a peck of potatoes, sentenced to 6 weeks hard labour.

Alexander Schmitt, 39, stole coats, 1872. A German tailor born in Sadilracken, Prussia. Just passing through St Neots he stayed at the Wheatsheaf Inn where he sang hymns and psalms. The next morning he stole 2 overcoats and a ‘monkey-jacket’ form Mrs Norris’s tailors shop. he was tracked to Godmanchester by St Neots police Superintendent Copping. Convicted in Huntingdon and sentenced to 3 months in prison.

Walter Horsford, hung, 1898.

John Bellingham: in 1812 he assassinated the Prime Minister, Spencer Perceval in the House of Commons.

The life of James Toller is also featured at the museum. He was born at Eynesbury in 1798. He grew to be 8 ft 1 1/2ins by the age of 18. In 1815 he appeared before the Emperor of Russia and the King of Prussia. He died in 1818 and is buried in the central aisle of Eynesbury Church.

James Toller 1798-1828, Eynesbury Giant, St Neots Museum

St Neots Quads: Ann, Paul, Ernest and Michael Miles, b 1935. They were born to Mr and Mrs Miles of Ferrars Avenue, Eynesbury amd were the first set of quads born in Britain to survive more than 48 hours.

A 1930s St Neots council house, as exhibited at the St Neots Museum (2024)




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