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My Dr Sir I recd. the favour of yrs this Morning wherein you wish for my answer In regard to yr. offer of the Lease of the Collieries. I Should not have delay’d giving my answer, To any offer: but I waited till I knew yr. Intentions about them. When I had the pleasure of Seeing you at Hexham I took the liberty to tell you What I mentioned to <Sir T B>, & his answer. My Motive was; as the Collieries lay near to ours, & to our Lead Mine, our haveing the lease of the Collieries Might be the Means of preventing any disputes; - our level I knew would be of great use to any persons who Should work the Collieries. yr. answer to me was that the bussiness In regard to the lease of the Collieries would be Settled at Newcastle the next day. – after that I heard that Mr. H.E. had made application for the lease; but he heard [inserted above: ‘understood’] that I had already applyd for it he wh.drew his application & So that he woud not Interfere wth. Me about it not willing to Show less Civility & liberality than Mr. HE. I Immediately desired that It might be Signified to Mr HE that I did not wish to Interfere wth. Him so as to take that Colliery next his Brors. I only wished for that Colliery wch. was next to my own. - - -In answer to that to my great Surprise I heard that Mr. E. had orderd his Steward to bid £200 a year for the whole; & Mr. Bell had no doubt but he would have the use of our level: if Mr Bell would but have given me a line to have informed me how this affair went on It would have saved much time & trouble, I did not chuse to correspond wth my Bro[the]r about it as I did not wish for his Interference in any thing of that sort between you & me. I had no profit In view when I ask’d for the lease & att the old rent I did not mean to have workd Longish Col. but whoever takes it att the advanced rent must Endeavour To Indemnify themselves. I will accept of yr offer If I can prevail on Mr. Tulip who has a lease of my Colliery to join wh. me & give his assistance: I will accept of it because I think neither you nor I have been considard, & treated as we ought to have been In this affair. I have troubled you thus far, to shew that the delay did not arise from me I must now desire the favor that you would settle this matter just <as> it may suit best yr. convenience. <Ly B> & my Son write wth me their most affect Regards & I am
From the content and mention of ‘HE’ (identified elsewhere as Henry Errington) it is clear this relates to St John Lee and St Oswalds collieries. The letter is unsigned, but in Edward Blackett’s handwriting and from the content was evidently sent to Thos Beaumont as the mine’s owner. It can probably be dated to mid-December 1798 given the timing of other related correspondence on the matter, included elsewhere in DD. Monday 17th is used here.