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1875: Frustrated traveller smashes Slough Green tollgate with Steam Engine

Updated: Dec 28, 2022

Hampshire Telegraph – Saturday May 1st 1875


At the petty sessions, on Monday, James Frookster was charged with driving a locomotive steam engine against the Turnpike gate at Slough Green, and damaging it to the extent of £2.

It was shown by the evidence of Thomas Jupp, gatekeeper, that defendant, with some others, came up to the gate with two engines drawing the apparatus for ploughing, with van and water cart, for which he demanded toll to the amount of two shillings and six pence, but they declined paying more than one shilling, which they said they paid at Handcross, and, as he refused to open the gate or take the shilling, they drove it open with the engine and passed through, doing the damage complained of.

1875 Grenville Steam Carriage (image courtesy of National Motor Museum)

Mr. Goodman argued that there was no case, and that the engines drawing agricultural implements were not liable to pay tolls. But it was shown that this was not a case of tolls, but a wilful injury, and after a good deal of discussion it was arranged between the parties that the defendant should pay the amount claimed for damages, the costs being forgone.

Mr Gordon, the lessee of the Crawley Gates, announced his intention to summon the party for evasion and the amount of toll to be claimed, and for four previous journeys back.

Please follow the link for more on the local tollhouses


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