Thames Watermen Act 1794

Publication Date:January 01, 1794
 
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Anno Regni GEORGII III. tricesimo quarto. An Act for better regulating and governing the Watermen, Wherrymen, and Lightermen, upon the River ofThames , between Gravesend and Windsor .

(34 Geo. 3) C A P. LXV.

[23d May 1794]

'WHEREAS by an Act, passed in the second and third Years of the Reign of their late MajestiesPhilip and Mary , intituled, An Act touching Watermen and Bargemen upon the River of Thames it was enacted, that the Mayor and Court of Aldermen of the City of London for the Time being should, from Time to Time, at their Discretion, limit, set, and assess the Price or Prices, and Sums of Money, that every Person or Persons authorized to row upon the River of Thames , betwixt Gravesend and Windsor , should take for his or their Labour or Fare from Place to Place, particularly betwixt Gravesend and Windsor aforesaid; which Prices or Assessments afterwards should be signed and subscribed by two of the Privy Council at the least, and made public, as in and by the said Act is directed; and it was thereby farther enacted, that every Person and Persons that should take, for his or their Fare or Labour above the Prices that should be assessed in Form aforesaid, should forfeit for every such Offence forty Shillings and also should suffer Imprisonment by one Half Year; the said Forfeiture to be recovered as in and by the said Act is expressed: And whereas for many Years past the said Punishment hath been considered much too severe for the Offence, and there being no Powers for mitigating the same, the Offenders have generally escaped Punishment for their Extortion: And whereas by an Act, passed in the eleventh and twelfth Years of the Reign of his late Majesty King William the Third, intituled, An Act for the Explanation and better Execution of former Acts made touching Watermen and Wherrymen rowing on the River ofThames;and for the better ordering and governing the said Watermen, Wherrymen, and Lightermen, upon the said River, between Gravesend and Windsor, it was enacted, that there should be yearly appointed elected, and chosen, by the Court of Lord Mayor and Aldermen of the City of London for the Time being, the Number of eight Persons, of the most wise, discreet, and best Sort of Watermen, and the Number of three Persons out of twelve Persons, to be yearly nominated by the Lightermen, of the most wise, discreet, and best Sort of Lightermen, being Hauseholders, having two Lighters or Flat Boats upon the said River, between Gravesend and Windsor ; which Elections should be yearly, at the first Court of Aldermen to be holden within the said City, next after the first Day of June ; and the said eleven Persons so to be elected should be named or called the Overseers and Rulers of all the Wherrymen, Watermen and Lightermen that, from and after the said first Day of June , should use, occupy, or exercise any Rowing upon the said River of Thames betwixt Gravesend and Windsor aforesaid; which said Overseers and Rulers should keep and maintain good Order and Obedience amongst the said Watermen and Lightermen, according to the true Meaning of that present and former Acts; and that the Assistants and Auditors of the Society or Company of Wherrymen, Watermen, and Lightermen should be also appointed yearly in the Manner therein mentioned, for the better Order and Government of the said Company; and that the said Rulers, Auditors, and Assistants, or the major Part of them present, being all duly summoned as therein mentioned, should and might, and they were thereby empowered and authorized, from Time to Time, for the better and more effectual keeping and maintaining good Order and Obedience amongst the said Society and Company, to make, ordain, and provide such reasonable and lawful Rules, Orders, and Constitutions as in their Discretion they should think fit, with reasonable Pains and Penalties to the same annexed; which said Rules, Orders, and Constitutions should, from Time to Time, be laid before the Court of Lord Mayor and Aldermen of the City of London for the Time being, to be by them examined, altered, or approved, and afterwards confirmed or altered by the Lord Chief Justice of either Bench, for the common Good and Profit of his Majesty's Subjects; and for the further and better enforcing due Obedience to the said Rules, Orders, and Constitutions, and more easy and speedy Recovery of the Pains and Penalties to the same annexed, it was thereby further enacted, that the Lord Mayor of London , and the Aldermen of the said City, and the Justices of the Peace within the Shires next adjoining to the said River of Thames between Gravesend and Windsor , every of them within their several Jurisdictions and Authorities, should have full Power and Authority, by virtue of that present Act, upon Complaint made to, them, or any of them, by the said Overseers and Rulers, or any two of them, to examine, hear, and determine, by the Oath of one or more Witnesses, (which every of them were thereby authorized to administer,) or by the Confession of the Offender, all Complaints or Offences to be done or committed by any such Person or Persons that should offend contrary to the true Meaning of that present Act, or any Rule, Order, or Constitution to be made pursuant to the Authority thereby given, and by Distress and Sale of the Goods every such Offender, by Warrant under the Hand and Seal of the said Lord Mayor and Aldermen, or one or more of the said Aldermen or Justices, to cause to be levied, from Time to Time, all the Penalties inflicted by former Acts, and that present Act, touching Watermen, Wherrymen, or Lightermen, or by any such Rule, Order, or Constitution that should by virtue of that present Act be forfeited: And whereas, in pursuance of the last in Part recited Act of Parliament, certain Rules, Orders, and Constitutions have, from Time to Time, been made for the better Rule and Government of the said Society or Company, but the same have hitherto proved inadequate and ineffectual: And whereas it would tend to the more speedy and effectual Administration of Justice, and be of great public Utility and Convenience, if so much of the said Act of the second and third Years of their late Majesties Philip and Mary , as subjects Persons taking for their Fare or Labour above the assessed Prices, to the Fine of forty Shillings, and also to half a Year's Imprisonment, should be repealed; and if the Court of Mayor and Aldermen of the said City ofLondon for the Time being were authorized and empowered to make, frame, and set down in Writing, reasonable Rules, Orders, and Constitutions, for governing and regulating the Watermen, Wherrymen, and Lightermen, upon the River Thames , between the Limits aforesaid; and if the Lord Mayor, Recorder, or any one Alderman of the said City of London for the Time being, and the Justices of the Peace within the Shires and Places next adjoining to the said River of Thames , between Gravesend and Windsor , should severally and respectively have full Power and Authority to adjudge, ascertain, and settle the several Penalties, and to enforce Payment of the same, and to put the Laws, Statutes, Rules, Orders, and Constitutions, made and to be made, in Execution; and effectually to punish any Offence or Misbehaviour done or committed by any such Watermen, Wherrymen, or Lightermen, against the said Laws, Rules, Orders, and Constitutions which are now in force, or which shall at any Time or Times hereafter be made pursuant to the Authorities and Directions of this Act, or of the several Acts of Parliament in that Case made and provided:' May it therefore please your Majesty that it may be enacted; and be it enacted by the King's most Excellent Majesty, by and with the Advice and Consent of the Lords Spiritualand Temporal, and Commons, in this present Parliament assembled, and by the Authority of the same, That, from and after the first Day ofJuly one thousand seven hundred and ninety-four, so much of the said in Part recited Act of the second and third Years of the Reign of their late Majesties Philip and Mary , as subjects every or any Person taking for his Fare or Labour above the Prices assessed for that Purpose as therein mentioned, to the Fine or Forfeiture of forty Shillings, and also to Imprisonment by one Half Year, shall be, and the same is hereby repealed; and that, from and after the said first Day of July , the Court of Lord Mayor and Aldermen of the City of London shall have Authority, and are hereby empowered, from Time to Time, to make such Rules, Orders, and Constitutions, for the better Government and Regulation of Watermen, Wherrymen, and Lightermen, rowing or using any Boat, Barge, or Lighter, or other Vessel, upon the said River Thames , between Gravesend and Winasor , as they shall think fit and necessary, and to alter, repeal, or make void the same, or any of the Rules, Orders, or Constitutions now in force, in Manner and with the Approbation hereinafter mentioned; and the said Lord Mayor, Recorder, or any one Alderman of the said City, within the said City, and his Majesty's Justices of the Peace of the respective Counties and Places next adjoining to the said River Thames , between Gravesend and Windsor , shall severally and respectively have Power and Authority, within the said City, Counties, and Places respectively, to put in Execution the several Laws and Statutes, and also the Rules, Orders, and Constitutions which are now in force, or which shall at any Time hereafter be made by the said Court of Mayor and Aldermen, in pursuance of this Act, or by the Rulers, Auditors, and Assistants of the Watermen's Company, and approved by the said Court of Mayor and Aldermen, pursuant to the Authorities and Directions of the several Acts of Parliament in that Case made and provided, or any of them, against the aforesaid Watermen, Wherrymen, and Lightermen, or any other Person or Persons, for any offence or Offences committed or to be committed against the...

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