Source 3a

Extract 3a: Article on a riot in Preston from the ‘Illustrated London News’, 20 August 1842, Catalogue ref: ZPER 34/1 f.236


Dreadful Riot at Preston–Rioters shot

Preston, Saturday, one o’clock.—A meeting of operatives [workers] was held in Chadwick’s Orchard last night, about nine o’clock; and though the numbers in attendance were considerable, the crowd was anything like what might have been anticipated. A detachment of the 72nd were lodged in the assembly-room of the Bull Inn, and were under arms all night. It was scarcely anticipated that any measures would have been taken by the mob to prevent the factories being started this morning at the usual time. However, on one of the bells being rung at a little before six o’ clock, the mob, which had assembled at a short time previously in Chadwick’s Orchard, marched towards the North-Road, and the first factory they came to was Messrs, Catteral and Co.’s whose hands they turned out, and then proceeded to Mr. F. Sleddon’s where preparations had been made for resisting the mob. A stout resistance was made, Mr. Sleddon himself being on the spot; but they were overpowered by the immense numbers after some hard blows had been dealt out. Mr. Sleddon was slightly hurt in the affray, and a large number of squares in the factory windows were smashed. The mob then went to the factories at the west end of the town, and such as were at work were compelled to relinquish [give up] it. At Mr. Dawson’s factory a few squares of glass were broken. By this time the mob had increased most wonderfully, and included a very large proportion of women and children; but its general appearance had a more threatening aspect than at any time during yesterday.


« Return to What was Chartism?

The 72nd was an army regiment, the Duke of Albany’s Own Highlanders.

  • What preparations had the authorities taken to resist the crowd?
  • What time did the factories in Preston open for work?
  • Why do you think the crowd attacked factories in Preston?
  • What kind of people were involved in this protest?
  • Do you think this protest was influenced by Chartist aims? Explain your answer.