1831 election notice from the Enoch Wood scrapbook - "Coming to the Scratch!"

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Description:In 1831, former Member of Parliament for Coventry Richard Edensor Heathcote, was battling to become MP for Stoke-on-Trent.

Heathcote was a Longton-born Liberal politician who was keen to secure equal rights for Britain's Roman Catholics.


This notice, signed by a mystery figure named "Quiz," questions his record on a number of issues - and dares him to reveal his true colours.

The notice challenges Heathcote over two issues - the Corn Laws and the Game Laws.

  • The Corn Laws caused high prices at market for buying bread, by taxing imported corn and protecting the profits of landowners like Heathcote.

  • The Game Laws made it easy for landowners like Heathcote to prosecute working men who hunted and fished for food while on their land.

  • The authors demand:

    Dare he appeal to his Coventry constituents for a Character, now he offers himself as a Representative for us?

    In fact, Heathcote was ultimately elected as MP - but not until 1835.

    About this document

    This document was kept by pottery manufacturer Enoch Wood and is now amongst the collections at Stoke-on-Trent Museums.


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