Wednesday, 31 March 2010

IS Press Release - the Insolvency Service cracks down on bankrupts who try to conceal assets

The Insolvency Service have issued a press release entitled: "Insolvency Service cracks down on bankrupts who try to conceal assets." The press release notes:
"Debtors who believe they can go bankrupt yet hide some of their assets from the Official Receiver have been told to think again by The Insolvency Service.

Bankrupts must disclose all assets, no matter how small, or they face a penalty which could include having their period of bankruptcy restrictions increased by up to 15 years instead of the usual 12 months. The Official Receiver will also seek to recover such assets.

The new warnings have been prompted by a surge in cases dealt with by Official Receivers where potential bankrupts have attempted to put assets out of reach of their creditors – up to nearly 200 cases this year compared with just 28 in 2008-09.

Recent cases exposed by The Insolvency Service include bankrupts who failed to disclose cash, insurance policies and even cars to the Official Receiver. All were found out and had their period of bankruptcy restrictions extended. This meant that their ability to borrow, manage a company or even stand for the local council remained limited by the insolvency rules for even longer (see notes).

Senior Official Receiver for the Insolvency Service in Great Britain, Les Cramp, said:

“The Insolvency Service always acts if we think it is in the public interest to do so. It is only fair to the creditors that we seek full disclosure of any assets that might be available.

“Potential bankrupts who want the debt relief offered by this form of insolvency must declare all of their assets straight away. It is then for the Official Receiver to decide which assets must be sold for the benefit of the creditors and which might be retained by the debtor.”

Picture Credit: Insolvency Service.



The Insolvency Service has published the annual insolvency practitioner review

The Insolvency Service has published the annual insolvency practitioner review. The press release notes:
"The second ‘Annual Review of Insolvency Practitioner Regulation’ is published ...by the Insolvency Service, the Executive Agency which monitors the regulation of Insolvency Practitioners (IPs).

An increasing number of individuals and businesses were affected by insolvency procedures in 2009, and the report sets out the key developments in the regulatory regime during the year. These developments include the implementation of recommendations made by the Hampton Implementation Review team and technical changes to the insolvency bond requirements resulting from implementation of the EU Services Directive. The report also highlights that:-

· whilst the number of authorised insolvency practitioners who are active and taking insolvency appointments increased from 1303 to 1331 during 2009

· the sector’s Recognised Professional Bodies and the Insolvency Service carried out a total of 410 (293 in 2008) monitoring visits to ensure that performance and conduct by IPs continues to be fit and proper

· 84 IPs were subject to sanctions following monitoring visits in 2009 ranging from having their licences withdrawn to financial penalties, for failing to follow the agreed common standards.

The full report, available on the Insolvency Service website, sets out the essential features of the regulatory regime which governs the 1700 authorised IPs operating in England, Scotland and Wales."

Picture Credit: Insolvency Service.

Wrongful Trading considered: Goldfarb v Higgins & Ors [2010] EWHC 613 (Ch) (25 March 2010)

Mr Justice Roth (pictured) has handed down his judgment in Goldfarb v Higgins & Ors [2010] EWHC 613 (Ch) (25 March 2010). The case concerns s.213 of the Insolvency Act 1986. The section provides:
"(1) If in the course of the winding up of a company it appears that any business of the company has been carried on with intent to defraud creditors of the company or creditors of any other person, or for any fraudulent purpose, the following has effect.

(2) The court, on the application of the liquidator may declare that any persons who were knowingly parties to the carrying on of the business in the manner above-mentioned are to be liable to make such contributions (if any) to the company's assets as the court thinks proper."
At paragraph 8 of his judgment Roth, J goes on to note that the case concerned:
"...VAT fraud of the kind often described as "carousel" fraud, although in this case it is of a rather simpler nature that is referred to as "missing trader fraud". In essence, it is alleged that the Company was engaged in purchasing high-value computer processing units ("CPUs") for importation into the United Kingdom from Germany. As the export from Germany was within the EU, no VAT was payable on that purchase. The Company then rapidly re-sold these goods within the United Kingdom at a price including VAT. By a series of transactions conducted within a very short timeframe, the Company rapidly accrued a large VAT liability. But that VAT was never paid to HMRC and before HMRC could discover the fraud and intervene, the proceeds of the resale largely disappeared and the Company remained as a hollow shell unable to pay the VAT due."
In relation to s.213 IA86 the learned judge continued:
"Since the only transactions in which the Company was engaged over this short period would have been carried out at a loss if VAT had been duly accounted for to HMRC, I can readily conclude that the Company's business was carried on with intent to defraud a creditor or with a fraudulent purpose within the terms of section 213(1): see Re: L Todd (Swanscombe) Limited [1990] BCLC 454. On that basis, section 213(2) is engaged. This involves consideration as regards each respondent whether he (a) participated in the carrying on of the business of the Company in that way; and (b) did so "knowingly": ie with knowledge that the transactions in which he was participating were intended to defraud HMRC: see Re: BCCI [2003] EWHC 1868 (Ch), [2004] 2 BCLC 236 at [243]. The question of what is required by "knowledge", in the context of the test for dishonesty in a civil statute, was considered by the Privy Council in Barlow Clowes Limited v Eurotrust Limited [2005] UKPC 37, [2006] 1 WLR 1476. Lord Hoffmann there stated (at [10]):

    "Although a dishonest state of mind is a subjective mental state, the standard by which the law determines whether it is dishonest is objective. If by ordinary standards a defendant's mental state would be characterised as dishonest, it is irrelevant that the defendant judges by different standards."

    And later in the judgment he explained further (at [15]):

    "The reference to 'what he knows would offend normally accepted standards of honest conduct' meant only that his knowledge of the transaction had to be such as to render his participation contrary to normally acceptable standards of honest conduct. It did not require that he should have had reflections about what those normally acceptable standards were."
  1. Knowledge for this purpose includes shutting one's eyes to the obvious. See Re: BCCI, where Patten J (as he then was) stated, as regards liability under section 213 (at [11]):
  2. "It is well established that it is no defence to say that one declined to ask questions, when the only reason for not doing so was an actual appreciation that the answers to those questions would be likely to disclose the existence of a fraud. But liability in such cases depends upon that stage of consciousness having been reached. ... [O]ne needs to be careful to draw a distinction between a conscious appreciation of the true nature of the business being carried on and a failure, however negligent, to appreciate that fraud was being perpetrated. ...The essentials of what is required in order to establish so-called 'blind-eye' knowledge are set out in the speech of Lord Scott of Foscote in the recent decision of the House of Lords in Manifest Shipping Co Ltd v Uni-Polaris Shipping Co Ltd [2001] UKHL 1,[2003] AC 469 at [116], where Lord Scott says:
    'In summary, blind-eye knowledge requires, in my opinion, a suspicion that the relevant facts do exist and a deliberate decision to avoid confirming that they exist. But a warning should be sounded. Suspicion is a word that can be used to describe a state of mind that may, at one extreme, be no more than a vague feeling of unease and, at the other extreme, reflect a firm belief in the existence of the relevant facts. In my opinion, in order for there to be blind-eye knowledge, the suspicion must be firmly grounded and targeted on specific facts. The deliberate decision must be a decision to avoid obtaining confirmation of facts in whose existence the individual has good reason to believe. To allow blind-eye knowledge to be constituted by a decision not to inquire into an untargeted or speculative suspicion would be to allow negligence, albeit gross, to be the basis of a finding of privity.'"
Picture Credit: http://www.monckton.com/pix/barristers/PR%20200.jpg

Tuesday, 30 March 2010

HOBS: Provincial Debtors' Prisons: Oxford

According to Pitt's 1693 text debtors in seventeenth century Oxford resided in either the Castle gaol or the City gaol. The Castle gaol[1] records[2] for the seventeenth century are scant. There is evidence of a petition for relief from Oxford prisoners in 1687 which states that the prisoners are, “very poor and… forced to undergo great want and suffer great calamities.”[3] The use of the clog was not restricted to the Fleet (where it cost 100l to remove), it was also used in Oxford Castle gaol.[4]


[1] Neild, J, Account of Persons confined for Debt, in the various prisons of England and Wales, ... with their provisionary allowance during confinement; as reported to the Society for the discharge and relief of small Debtors. London, 1800, at page 439 provides an excellent physical exposition of the Castle gaol.

[2] Oxfordshire Record Office, Ref. CJ/V/14 – date Michaelmas 20 Chas. II (1670) – suit for recovery of £21 owed to Allen to James Carr, a debtor released from custody by Henderson before discharging the debt. See: Cordeaux, EH & Marry, DH. A Bibliography of printed works relating to Oxfordshire (excluding the University and City of Oxford). Oxford Historical Society, New Series, vol.XXVIII, supplementary volume. Clarendon Press, Oxford, MCMLXXXI, for prison books.

[3] Barrett, A & Harrison, C (Eds). Crime and Punishment in England – a sourcebook. UCL Press, 1999, page 133.

[4] Pitt, M. The Crye of the Oppressed being a true and tragical account of the unparrallel’d Sufferings of Multitudes of poor Imprisoned Debtors, in most of the Goa’s in England, under the Tyranny of the Goalers, and other Oppressors, lately discovered upon the occasion of this present Act of Grace For the Relief of poor Prisoners fr Debt, or Damages; some of them being not only Iron’d and lodg’d with Hogs, Felons , and Condemn’d Persons, but have had their bones broken; others poisoned and starved to death; others denied the common blessings of nature, as Water to drink, or straw to lodge on; others their Wives and Daughters attempted to by ravish’d; with other Barborous cruelties, not to be parallel’d in any History or Nation: All which is made out by undeniable evidence. Together with the case of the publisher. London, Printed for Moses Pitt and sold by Booksellers of London and Westminster, 1691, at preface. See Pitt’s clog woodcut (pictured to the right of this blog entry), and for a modern recreation of a clog see the Muir Hunter Museum of Bankruptcy exhibits.

Monday, 29 March 2010

Insolvency Practitioners in focus in the Guardian - "Noble Savages?!"

The Guardian carried a very interesting article on Saturday highlighting the work of Insolvency Practitioners (IPs). The piece is entitled "The insolvency administrator: Noble salvage." It is essential reading.

Picture Credit: http://blog.lib.umn.edu/atschrag/classes/images/noblesavage.jpg

HOBS: Provincial Debtors' Prisons: Liverpool

Roger de Poictiers built the Castle of Liverpool,[1] which was used as a debtors prison. This remained the case, until during the reign of George II, when the castle was pulled down. Debtors henceforth resided in the castellated mansion of the Earl of Derby[2]. Pitt describes the prisons physical dimensions in 1690 as being, “sixteen foot in length and twelve foot in breadth, in which was Two Houses of Office, it being one room, and no yard to walk in”[3]. Thomas Morgan was placed in Liverpool debtors’ prison in approximately 1690 for the sum of eleven pounds debt[4]. He was a ‘Chrurgeon’ whose practice had fallen on hard times after he had become lame. Unhappily, his wife came down with the fever and his children with the pox at about the same time as his financial decline[5]. During his year and a quarter confinement Morgan had no bedding or sustenance allowance and was forced to catch mice to stave off starvation.[6] Such privations were not restricted to Morgan, but were also extended to his wife, who upon complaining about Morgan’s confinement with felons and highwaymen was herself imprisoned under close confinement and was restricted from obtaining access to her husband. She and her three month old child also received no allowance and survived solely on the charity of her neighbours.[7] Thomas Row, the gaoler of Liverpool debtors’ prison did not remedy the alleged ill treatment that Morgan had received but instead beat him and put him in irons.[8]


[1] On seventeenth century Liverpool generally see: Irvine, WF. Liverpool in King Charles the Second’s time by Sir Edward Moore written in the Year 1667-8. Henry Young & Sons, Liverpool. 1899.

[2] Neild, J, Account of Persons confined for Debt, in the various prisons of England and Wales, ... with their provisionary allowance during confinement; as reported to the Society for the discharge and relief of small Debtors. London, 1800, at page 335.

[3] Pitt, M. The Crye of the Oppressed being a true and tragical account of the unparrallel’d Sufferings of Multitudes of poor Imprisoned Debtors, in most of the Goa’s in England, under the Tyranny of the Goalers, and other Oppressors, lately discovered upon the occasion of this present Act of Grace For the Relief of poor Prisoners fr Debt, or Damages; some of them being not only Iron’d and lodg’d with Hogs, Felons , and Condemn’d Persons, but have had their bones broken; others poisoned and starved to death; others denied the common blessings of nature, as Water to drink, or straw to lodge on; others their Wives and Daughters attempted to by ravish’d; with other Barborous cruelties, not to be parallel’d in any History or Nation: All which is made out by undeniable evidence. Together with the case of the publisher. London, Printed for Moses Pitt and sold by Booksellers of London and Westminster, 1691, at page 4. Pitt’s exposition of the conditions in Liverpool gaol are drawn from a letter he received from a prisoner, Thomas Morgan, on the 7th November 1690.

[4] Ibid.

[5] Ibid.

[6] See the picture to the right of this blog entry which depicts Morgan and his mice catching device.

[7] Pitt page 4.

[8] Ibid.

Friday, 26 March 2010

Consultation on strengthening the administration regime for insurers

The Treasury have published a consultation document which seeks views on "Strengthening the administration regime for insurers...". See here. The report notes:
"This consultation seeks views on Government proposals to improve the protection and payment

of benefits for holders of insurance contracts with an insurer facing financial difficulties, in

particular addressing gaps in protection that remain in the administration regime for insurers in

comparison to the liquidation regime. The Government proposals include:

applying the existing rules for valuing contracts of insurance in liquidation to

administration; and

revising the objectives of an administrator of an insurance company, by:

o changing the law to require administrators to provide assistance to the FSCS to

enable it to administer the compensation scheme and secure continuity of

contracts of insurance; and

o applying existing powers relating to continuity of contracts of long-term

insurance on the liquidation of an insurer to administration."

Picture Credit: http://www.betterpublicbuilding.org.uk/assets/images/finalists_2003/treasury/treasury_large_1.gif

Modernisation of Insolvency Secondary Legislation- Links to Modernisation Rules SIs and LRO-March 2010

The Insolvency Service (IS - pictured) have posted a very useful new page on their website that provides links to the modernisation of insolvency secondary legislation with links to the modernisation rules SIs and LRO.

Picture Credit: Insolvency Service.

HOBS: Provincial Debtors' Prisons: Lincoln

The story of the seventeenth century[1] debtors’ experience in Lincoln[2] debtors Gaols (Castle Gaol, City and County Gaol) is possible to recount using Pitt's work. Lincoln Castle was first used as a debtors’ prison in about 1790.[3] In the late seventeenth century, debtors were confined in Lincoln Castle and in 1690 were some thirty or forty in number[4]. One imprisoned debtor, William Follet, obtained some six pounds two shillings capital, with which he planned to purchase leather as stock to help maintain himself whilst confined. It is alleged that the six pounds two shillings was stolen from him by order of the “Inhuman goaler,(sic) William Smith”[5]. When Follet complained he was dragged in his coach by his heels[6], ‘suffering his head to beat on the hard stones…by which ill usage the said Follet is become not altogether so well in his intellects as formerly.’[7] It is further alleged that William Smith encouraged felons to mistreat debtors, for example, causing one Robert Slinger (a felon) to nearly knock out the eye of a debtor (Stephen Turrington). When Turrington sought restitution from William Smith he was, ‘entertain’d with nothing but Scoffs and Laughter’[8].


[1] On Lincolnshire during the seventeenth century see: Holmes, C. Seventeenth-Century Lincolnshire. Vol.VII of History of Lincolnshire, Lincoln, 1980.

[2] On the history of Lincoln generally see: Anonymous. Memoirs illustrative of the History and Antiquities of the County and City of Lincoln, communicated to the annual meeting of the Royal Archaeological Institute of Great Britain and Ireland, held at Lincoln, July, 1848 with a general report of the proceedings of the meeting and a catalogue of the museum formed on that occasion. London, MDCCCL.

[3] Neild’s exposition of Lincoln Castle gaol (page 328) relates to the gaol built in about 1790. See: Neild, J, Account of Persons confined for Debt, in the various prisons of England and Wales, ... with their provisionary allowance during confinement; as reported to the Society for the discharge and relief of small Debtors. London, 1800.

[4] Pitt, M. The Crye of the Oppressed being a true and tragical account of the unparrallel’d Sufferings of Multitudes of poor Imprisoned Debtors, in most of the Goa’s in England, under the Tyranny of the Goalers, and other Oppressors, lately discovered upon the occasion of this present Act of Grace For the Relief of poor Prisoners fr Debt, or Damages; some of them being not only Iron’d and lodg’d with Hogs, Felons , and Condemn’d Persons, but have had their bones broken; others poisoned and starved to death; others denied the common blessings of nature, as Water to drink, or straw to lodge on; others their Wives and Daughters attempted to by ravish’d; with other Barborous cruelties, not to be parallel’d in any History or Nation: All which is made out by undeniable evidence. Together with the case of the publisher. London, Printed for Moses Pitt and sold by Booksellers of London and Westminster, 1691, at page 6.

[5] Ibid page 7.

[6] See the picture to the right of this blog entry, and the depiction of William Follet’s rough treatment at the hands of the gaoler and his ‘ruffians’ in Lincoln Castle debtors prison.

[7] Pitt page 7.

[8] Ibid page 7.

Thursday, 25 March 2010

Consultation on DROs and Pensions - 23 June 2010 deadline

The Insolvency Service (IS - pictured) have published a new consultation document on Debt Relief Orders (DRO) and Pensions. See here. The deadline for consultation is 23 June 2010.

Picture Credit: Insolvency Service.

HOBS: Provincial Debtors' Prisons: Leicester

The County gaol in Leicester[1] which was first inhabited by prisoners in 1793 (the town gaol was also completed in 1793), as Neild opines, “without, looks as it should do: it has a prison-like appearance.”[2] In a letter dated 13 November 1690 from Jer. Heggs to Pitt, the conditions for debtors imprisoned in Leicester gaol are described.[3] Heggs describes the gaoler as a ‘Tyrant’ who places debtors who refuse to use his beds (and pay the requisite charge) in, “a low moist Dungeon, where Felons should Lodg”[4] threatening to “knock them in the head.”[5] The debtors and felons cohabitated.


[1] On the history of Leicester generally see: Skillington, SH. A History of Leicester. Edgar Backus, Leicester, 1923. See also: Simmons, J. Leicester – Past and Present – Vol.One: Ancient Borough to 1860. Eyre Methuen, London, 1974.

[2] Neild, J, Account of Persons confined for Debt, in the various prisons of England and Wales, ... with their provisionary allowance during confinement; as reported to the Society for the discharge and relief of small Debtors. London, 1800, at page 320.

[3] Pitt, M. The Crye of the Oppressed being a true and tragical account of the unparrallel’d Sufferings of Multitudes of poor Imprisoned Debtors, in most of the Goa’s in England, under the Tyranny of the Goalers, and other Oppressors, lately discovered upon the occasion of this present Act of Grace For the Relief of poor Prisoners fr Debt, or Damages; some of them being not only Iron’d and lodg’d with Hogs, Felons , and Condemn’d Persons, but have had their bones broken; others poisoned and starved to death; others denied the common blessings of nature, as Water to drink, or straw to lodge on; others their Wives and Daughters attempted to by ravish’d; with other Barborous cruelties, not to be parallel’d in any History or Nation: All which is made out by undeniable evidence. Together with the case of the publisher. London, Printed for Moses Pitt and sold by Booksellers of London and Westminster, 1691, at page 24.

[4] Ibid. See the picture to the right of this blog entry. Pitt’s correspondent further opines, “We are seven of us Lodg Nine Foot deep in a Dungeon already, and he [the gaoler] wisheth God may Damm his soul, if he do not cause a Pitt 12 Foot deeper to be digged to put men in” (page 26).

[5] Ibid.

Wednesday, 24 March 2010

HOBS: Provincial Debtors' Prisons: Hereford

The City of Hereford[1] had both a City Gaol and a County Gaol in the early nineteenth century. Both were used to detain debtors. The City Gaol was used in part as a debtors’ prison. It was situated in the Bye-Street gate and ominously for recalcitrant debtors had a whipping-post in its yard.[2] The County Gaol, built on the site of the old Priory was used as a debtors’ prison. In a letter dated 7 November 1690 from John Taylor and John Seaborne the conditions in the prison are recounted. The gaoler, William Huck, it is alleged was, “a common Lewd Person, a Swearer, Curser, Lier, Drunkard…a Fighter, disturbing, beating and wounding of his Prisoners.”[3] The letter alleges that the gaoler frequently drew his sword and loaded pistols at prisoners in a threatening, menacing manner and even went so far as to murder one Mary Barard in the year 1688 by hitting her on the head with his keys[4]. It was also alleged that the gaoler used the prison as his own personal farmyard in which he kept, “his Swine, Geese, Ducks and Hens, Stinking , and Breeding Diseases among the Prisoners.”[5]


[1] On the history of Hereford generally see: Anonymous. The History and Antiquities Of the City and Cathederal-Church of Hereford: Containing An Account of All the Inscriptions, epitaphs, &c. upon the Tombs, Monuments, and Grave Stones, with Lists of the Principal Dignataries; and an Appendix, consisting of several Valuable Orignial Papers. R.Gosling, London. 1717.

[2] Neild, J, Account of Persons confined for Debt, in the various prisons of England and Wales, ... with their provisionary allowance during confinement; as reported to the Society for the discharge and relief of small Debtors. London, 1800, at page 259.

[3] Pitt, M. The Crye of the Oppressed being a true and tragical account of the unparrallel’d Sufferings of Multitudes of poor Imprisoned Debtors, in most of the Goa’s in England, under the Tyranny of the Goalers, and other Oppressors, lately discovered upon the occasion of this present Act of Grace For the Relief of poor Prisoners fr Debt, or Damages; some of them being not only Iron’d and lodg’d with Hogs, Felons , and Condemn’d Persons, but have had their bones broken; others poisoned and starved to death; others denied the common blessings of nature, as Water to drink, or straw to lodge on; others their Wives and Daughters attempted to by ravish’d; with other Barborous cruelties, not to be parallel’d in any History or Nation: All which is made out by undeniable evidence. Together with the case of the publisher. London, Printed for Moses Pitt and sold by Booksellers of London and Westminster, 1691, at page 26.

[4] See the picture to the right of this blog.

[5] Pitt page 29.

Tuesday, 23 March 2010

HOBS: Provincial Debtors' Prisons: Exeter

In the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries an unobservant member of the public passing Exeter City[1] and County gaol, may have been unfortunate enough to injure themselves against a dangling shoe suspended from an iron-grated window, located in the debtors’ quarters of the gaol. The iron-grated window from which the shoe was dangled was located in a room called the ‘Shoe’, no doubt after the activities of the debtors, who were attempting to obtain money from kind hearted passers-by. The practice had ceased by 1808 due to an order of the local magistrates.[2] In the seventeenth century[3] a number of bequests were made to aid the prisoners of Exeter City and County Gaol[4]. The motivation for these bequests could have been indicative of the general munificence of the benefactors or because of the appalling state of the prison at that time. If Pitt’s contentions are to be believed then the later motivation is probable. The bequests were not debtor specific. The parish of St. Thomas the Apostle in Exeter also contained a further prison which housed the County prison for Debtors and the Sheriff’s Ward, of which Neild observed “it is difficult to conceive the extreme wretchedness and misery this Goal (sic) exhibits, the debtors, for the most part being mechanicks and labourers.”[5]

Southgate-prison in Exeter housed debtors in the later seventeenth century. The debtors’ room and its physical layout is given by Pitt’s correspondent as being ‘a room which is not above Eighteen Foot and some Inches Square.”[6] The conditions in the debtors’ quarters were apparently so poor that ten or twelve men were forced to relieve themselves in one adjoining, “House of Office”. The effect of which was that the debtors were forced to, “suck the ill air that doth proceed from their Excrements, and the Nastiness of the House of Office, so that we are suffocated with ill Air, which makes us very sick, and are broken out with Boils, Carbunckles, and Botches.”[7]


[1] On the history of Exeter generally see: Jenkins, A. Civil and Ecclesiastical History of the City of Exeter and its environs from the time of the Romans to the Year 1806; comprising the religion and idolatrous superstition of the Britons, Saxons, and Danes; the Rise and progress of Christianity in the Western Counties of England; with a catalogue of the Bishops of the Diocese, from the first establishment of the See in this county; also a general and parochial Survey and Description of the Churches, and other places of divine worship, public buildings, institutions, antiquities, government, and prospects; together with an annual list of Mayors and Bailiffs embellished with Fourteen Engravings of Ancient Buildings and a portrait of the Author. 2nd Edition, W. Norton, Exeter, 1841.

[2] Neild, J, Account of Persons confined for Debt, in the various prisons of England and Wales, ... with their provisionary allowance during confinement; as reported to the Society for the discharge and relief of small Debtors. London, 1800, at page 196.

[3] On Exeter generally see: Stephens, WB. Seventeenth –Century Exeter – A study of Industrial and Commercial Development, 1625-1688. The University of Exeter, Exeter, 1958. See also: Izacke, R. Remarkable Antiquities of the City of Exeter, Giving An Account of the Laws and Customs of the Place, the Officers, Court of Judicature, Gates, Walls, Rivers, Churches, and Privileges, Together, With a Catalogue of all the Bishops, Mayors, Sheriffs from the Year 1049 to 1617. London, 1681.

[4] Ibid page 199.

[5] Neild page 202.

[6] Pitt, M. The Crye of the Oppressed being a true and tragical account of the unparrallel’d Sufferings of Multitudes of poor Imprisoned Debtors, in most of the Goa’s in England, under the Tyranny of the Goalers, and other Oppressors, lately discovered upon the occasion of this present Act of Grace For the Relief of poor Prisoners fr Debt, or Damages; some of them being not only Iron’d and lodg’d with Hogs, Felons , and Condemn’d Persons, but have had their bones broken; others poisoned and starved to death; others denied the common blessings of nature, as Water to drink, or straw to lodge on; others their Wives and Daughters attempted to by ravish’d; with other Barborous cruelties, not to be parallel’d in any History or Nation: All which is made out by undeniable evidence. Together with the case of the publisher. London, Printed for Moses Pitt and sold by Booksellers of London and Westminster, 1691, at page 21. Pitt’s exposition is drawn from a letter dated November 8th, 1690, written by two inmates, Aaron Bourne and Richard Lodden.

[7] Pitt page 22.

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