The North Inn Delabole
The North Inn was at the top of Medrose Street , next door from the present day bus shelter. There were ten rooms and a cellar, outdoors there was a coal house, six stalled stable, coach house, pig’s house and other small buildings.
The following were the landlord/licensed victuallers.
The above dates are when they were already there.
From a report on the 4 th May 1861: –
Manslaughter at the North Inn, Delabole.
On Monday last, an inquest was held before E. G. Hamley Esq. Coroner of Delabole, on view of the body of Samuel Mitchell who died from injuries he received during a fight with Richard Perry, both men, with others, had been drinking in Broad’s public house, The North Inn, Medrose, on a Friday night, whilst there a quarrel arose whereupon Perry challenged Mitchell to fight him. Mitchell at first refused, but afterwards accepted the challenge. They went into an adjoining field and fought several rounds, in the last according to the evidence of three witnesses, Perry after knocking down the deceased, kicked him once or twice whilst on the ground. This was denied by three other witnesses. Deceased however never spoke again and remained in an insensible state until Sunday morning when he died.
Mr Pearse, surgeon of Camelford, attended him and also made a post mortem examination of the body. He stated that the cause of death was effusion of blood on the brain, which was likely to be produced by blows or kicks.
Having been charged with manslaughter, Perry was summoned to appear at the Petty Sessions held at Camelford Town Hall . The jury without hesitation returned a verdict of manslaughter and he was committed for trial at the next assizes.
On the 10 th of August 1861, Richard Perry, 36, labourer, William Arthur and Richard Cory, both labourers on bail, appeared at the County Assizes in Bodmin, both parties had acted as seconds during the fight between Perry and Mitchell. They fought several rounds with varying success and at the last round, Mitchell, who appeared to be eager to continue the fight, called “time” to Perry. He was coming towards Perry with the intention of striking him, when Perry with skills of Cornish wrestler, tripped him up, when he fell heavily to the ground and died shortly afterwards. According to the evidence of a witness named Langdon, the prisoner kicked deceased twice whilst on the ground. Another witness swore that he kicked him only once, whilst two who witnessed the whole fight swore that Perry did not kick the deceased at all. Perry said he bore no ill to the deceased, the fight was a fair one and he denied having kicked the deceased.
The learned Judge in passing sentence, remarked, as the jury had found that there was no unfairness in the fight, he should not give the offence any severe punishment. It had been proved that at the time the deceased received the fatal injury he was forcing the fight and there was no evidence to show the three prisoners at the bar had combined to take away Mitchell’s life. Richard Perry, William Arthur and Richard Cory were sentenced for one week in Bodmin Gaol. (The law did not come down heavy on them).
Of the many fatalities at the Delabole Quarry, E.G. Hamley Esq. the coroner conducted inquests on several occasions at the North Inn. Before the chapel opposite had the facility of a stable and a trap house, the visiting preacher would have the use of one at the North Inn for their horse and trap if so required. Before the coming of the railway, horse and wagons would go down the road at Medrose to Clark ‘s Hole. There was quarry buildings and slate yard at this eastern side of the Delabole Quarries. Waggoners who had come some distance and unable to return the same day, they would have a nights lodging at the North Inn.
Petty Sessions February 13 th 1878. James Jenkin Holsworthy, was summoned for being drunk near Camelford. On January 9 th 1878 on the evening of that day, defendant was found about half a mile from Camelford by a policeman, with a wagon of slate and three horses. He was very drunk and had missed his way, he had been to Delabole Quarry and apparently the North Inn, and come to Camelford by mistake instead of going to Holsworthy. The kindly policeman, instead of taking him to the lock up, he was brought to the Masons Arms, Camelford for the night where he and his horses were taken care of and the next morning, being sober and trust a wiser man, proceeded on his homeward journey. He did not appear in court and was fined five shillings and costs, or in default of payment, seven days imprisonment.
DELABOLE LOCAL OPTION POLL: a letter in the Cornwall & Devon Post January 1 st 1921 as follows:
Sir, We had a local poll taken, the question of Local Options (The closing of Public Houses). I enclose result, which I am sure will interest you. It indicates the feeling here, and we trust may be of help to other places.
Signed M. J. Wells.
Delabole, December 22 nd 1920.
Votes for no licenses 461. Votes for no change 96
Spoilt Voting papers 43. A majority of 365 in favour of Delabole having no licenses, Delabole would be clear of public houses if Parliament gave us Local Option.
This is a splendid poll and shows clearly what the Delabole people want. Sir George Croydon will get a copy of this. Many thanks to all those who worked hard in distribution and collection of voting papers and congratulations to everybody.
A.G. Barker. S. Clements. J. Keat. S. Radcliffe. J. Dawe Smith. M. J. Wells.
Mr M. J. Wells was at that time the Managing Director of The Old Delabole Slate Quarry.
In March 1923 at the Camelford Licensing Sessions the license for the North Inn , Delabole was refused as very little custom was done, there was no accommodation for visitors and for other reasons. In the course of his duties, P C Mallett had visited the three Public Houses three times in January and in February ten times. Average number of customers January: – Commercial 14, Railway 8, North Inn 2. February: Commercial 13, Railway 4, North Inn 2. (The Commercial is now the Bettle & Chisel). In the North Inn there was not much furniture and the cellar was half full of water, the premises were in a neglected condition.
Frederick Charles Allen who was the licensee of the North Inn , as a miner he had saved between £700 and £800 while abroad, came home in 1915 and became the licensee of the North Inn. He went in for betting on horse racing and in 1923 became bankrupt because of this and opposition from the Magistrates, the Police and the Temperance Society, the North Inn closed.
by Wesley Mills