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Bucks Chronicle and Reading Journal

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Some Selected Reports from The Windsor and Eton Express

9th September 1837

Windsor Police

Mr. Edward Butter Hunnings, who, we understand, held the situation of tide waiter to the Customs, was brought before the Magistrates under somewhat extraordinary circumstances. The accused excited considerable observation in the town for several days during the last week from his eccentric manners. It was soon rumoured that he was one of the persons who had lately made great endeavours to obtain an interview with Her Majesty; on one occasion he got into the hall of Buckingham Palace, and refused to leave for some time, stating that he had been invited to dinner by the Queen, to whom he requested that his card might be taken. At another time he was about to accost Her Majesty, when he was prevented from doing so, and fearful of being taken into custody he ran as fast as his legs would carry him towards the Serpentine Canal, into which he plunged, and swam across to escape from his pursuers.
When Her Majesty arrived in Windsor, she was followed by a considerable number of vehicles, one of which was the phaeton of the accused, who carried a small flag with him. He had since been seen riding about the town on a curiously coloured pony. He was respectably dressed, but wore very dark moustachios, and his head was surmounted with an enormously broad brimmed hat.
It appeared that on Saturday evening the defendant went into the boxes of the theatre in a state of intoxication, and while there created so much disturbance that the box keeper (Tyler) was desired by Mr. Penley, the manager, to request he should leave the theatre. He refused to do so and continued to behave most violently , when it became necessary to call in a policeman to remove him. Guthrie, the policeman, came and took him to the White Hart inn, where he was stopping, and left him there. Subsequently he returned to the door of the theatre with a female of dubious character, and tried to force his way in, when, so violent was his conduct, that by Mr. Penley's orders he was taken to the station house, and detained there until brought before the magistrates. It appeared that in the course of his violence he struck Mr. Tyler, the box-keeper two or three slight blows, which was the charge upon which he was detained in custody.
Mr. Gillman, the Superintendent of Police, produced the property which the accused had in his possession, consisting of a check drawn by Sir Chapman Marshall for 100, a silver watch and gold chain, a gold seal, some gold and silver money, and a certificate from Dr. Chambers, of which the following is a copy:-

"I have seen Mr. Hunnings again to day, and find he is still in an irritable state of body and mind, with an eruption of boils, and I am of opinion that he ought to be quiet, and under cooling medical treatment for a short time longer, before he resumes his duty"
(Signed)"W.F.Chambers, M.D. August 9th 1837."

The defendant, whose deportment before the magistrates was the very antipodes to what it was on Saturday night, expressed his regret for having caused a disturbance in the theatre, and stated he would be more guarded in the future. He was sorry to understand that an impression had gone abroad that he intended to molest the Queen, which he assured the magistrates was wholly untrue. He had never been in Windsor before, and he thought he would come here to see the Queen make her entrance.When he saw Her Majesty arrive he merely bowed to Her Majesty, and one of her attendants returned "his move." He had not seen Her Majesty since, nor had he at all thrown himself in her way. Capes, a policeman stationed at the Castle, who had been ordered by some of Her Majesty's suite to attend the examination, stated that the defendant went to Buckingham Palace, and said that he came to dine with Her Majesty. Defendant: I will explain that. I had purchased a quantity of furniture at a sale in Kensington the day before, which came to 30, for which I gave a check on Sir Chapman Marshall, who is a co-executor with me. That check was dishonoured, which drove me wild, and I went to the Palace and treated some of the guards with liquor to drink Her Majestys health. In my excitement I went into the Palace gates to inquire for the Queen, but was refused admission, and I went home.

Capes: But you gave your card, and said you had come to dine with the Queen.
Defendant: (laughing) Oh! I merely sent in my private card. After some further enquiry, the defendant was asked if he had any friends he could bring forward, to which he replied in the negative, but offered to leave any sum of money as a security that he would not repeat the conduct of which he was accused.

Eventually the defendant was permitted to compromise the affair of the assault with Tyler, the complainant, and they then decided that they had no jurisdiction as to the other part of the affair as he had not been guilty of insulting the Queen in Windsor. They however, gave him a caution as to his future conduct, which he promised should be attended to, and having had all his property returned to him, he was discharged, after declaring that he would leave the town.

Mr. Pook, the landlord of the Star and Garter tap, was fined 5s and 19s costs, for assaulting a private in the Grenadier Guards, named Charles Sampson.