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WEEKEND WEB: Farmer fined for potato profiting

We look back at the Lincs Free Press this week in 1917.

Spalding magistrates took a firm stance in their support of the Government in order to put down profiteering in the nation’s food supplies.

A Holbeach Marsh farmer was fined £200 on two summonses, for selling seed potatoes at prices higher than the generous rates fixed by the Potato Orders issued earlier in the year.

In delivering the decision, the Bench indicated that should any prosecutions be brought before them in connection with this year’s crop of potatoes not only would the maximum fine be inflicted, but probably imprisonment also.

It was also stated that the merchants in the present cases who paid illegal prices were also be to proceded against.

The defendant was Cyril Tinsley and he was summoned for selling 25 tons of seed potato of the King Edward variety at £14 per ton to a London firm in April last, whereas the Order fixed the price for that month at £13 per ton.

Supt Burton conducted the prosecution and Mr Major Merry, Spalding, appeared for the defendant, who pleaded guilty.

Under the Defence of the Realm regulations, the defendant was ordered to procide the Food Controller with a statement of his seed potato transactions.

The Superintendent added that on these deals, the defendant made an illegal profit of £119 12s.

For the defence, Mr Merry said it was only a small transaction and not a case where the defendant had been selling week by week.

The chairman said he saw no difference in the cases which had been brought before him and imposed the maximum fine of £100 in each of the two cases.

The Bench issued a warning that if further cases came before them, they would issue maximum fines and a term of imprisonment.

PHOTO: Titan tractors lined up in town centre

The above picture is of a unit of 11 Titan tractors, which had just arrived in the Holland

area to assist the County Agricultural Executive Committee in their programme for securing an increased arable acreage producing food.

The necessity for the

utmost foodproduction possible is admitted and appreciated and farmers are urged to patriotically co-operate with the committee in their endeavours in the national


The committee now has 20 tractors which are at the disposal of Holland farmers and already applications are in hand for the ploughing of 5,000 acres. The Titan tractors are capable of ploughing four or five acres a day and our picture shows them lined up in Hall Place, Spalding.

Vicar saw the light – and was fined for it

The vicar of Moulton, the Rev Joseph M Evans, was fined £2 for failing to

reduce the lights of the parish church in the village as required by the Lighting Regulations.

Thief stole lamp from bicycle

Labourer Harry Boyers (16) from Deeping St Nicholas, was charged with the theft of a cycle lamp, value 10s, and was given the option of a fine, which was £1. He elected to pay the fine.

Back to camp

Thomas W Lake was charged with being an absentee from the Bulford Camp on Salisbury Plain and was remanded to await a military escort.


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