Letter – John Erasmus Blackett to Mark Skelton – 8 Nov 1792

Document Type: Letter
Date: 8 Nov 1792
Correspondent: John Erasmus Blackett
Recipient: Mark Skelton
Archive Source: NRO 672 E 1E 5
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Mr Skelton Esqr                                                                                Newcastle    Novr 8th 1792

             Birthwait Hall  Wakefield  Yorkshire

Dear Sir	Your favour of the 3d inst I duly received & observe the Contents.  I am happy to hear Mrs Beaumont was safely delivered of a Son, & that she & the Child were in a hopeful Way.  It is a very pleasing event to the Family & I congratulate you on the Occasion.

	In consequence of your former Letter and what I had wrote to you on the occasion, I desired Mr Hunter & Mr Emerson to Subscribe £300 for Mr Beaumont towards the intended Turnpike Road from hence to Wolsingham & Stanhope to join the Aldstone Road with the Restrictions that I mentioned in my Letter to you; the Subscription at presents amounts to upwards £5775 and the Road will certainly go forward which I have no doubt will be very beneficial to Mr Beaumont’s concerns in those parts.

	I observe what you say respecting a Waggon Way for the purpose of leading the Lead down to Blaydon & likewise to the intended inclosure being prejudicial to the Lead Carriage in the Way that you describe; the Lead Stewards are to be with me the 19th inst for Subsistance for the Workmen, against which time Mr Hunter will have recieved the Plan that you proposed sending him; both these matters will then be taken into Consideration & their Sentiments shall be sent to you respecting them.

	The laying a Waggon Way from the several Lead Mills to Dukesfield, & from thence to Blaydon & bringing the Lead & Ore by that Conveyance considering the numberless difficulties etc I look upon it to be almost impracticable; and at present I am rather inclined to think that a Waggon Way from Dukesfield to Blaydon would be attended not only with a great expence, but with very great difficulties owing to the variety of property through which the Way must necessarily go (for it cannot be laid upon the Common high Way or Lane, beyond a certain distance, nor is there room for it in many parts of the Road) the impossibility of preventing others leading on that Way unless it be inclosed, the Expence of Way leave thro’ private property, the keeping the Way in Repair; these & other objections will I think act forceably against the Scheme.  The Accot that you require shall be sent you when made out; but I apprehend that such Account made out quarterly would be attended with infinite trouble to the Lead Stewards, & prevent their attending to the important part of their Business etc.  I observe what you say as to the Bankers allowing Interest for the Money that they may have in their Hands from Time to Time; neither the Lead Pays’s nor the Subsistence for the Workmen could be made in Bank of England Notes without a very considerable Sum in Cash; we have found that one third in Cash is required at the Lead pay’s; & one half for the Subsistence batween they to be paid in Notes of £10 each instead of Notes of £5 more Cash must necessarily be required, besides the Bank of England Notes would not be so passible in that Country.

	In consequence of the Lead Company having made a Sale at a reduced price, I thought it advisable to sell 19000 p[iece]s of Lead, the Refin[e]d & Common at £18-10 per Fo[dde]r the Slag at £18  there are not above 9000 p[iece]s at Blaydon, but I have wrote to Mr Hunter to get the remainder down from Dukesfield etc as soon as the Road etc will admit of it.

	On the 3d inst I remitted Mr Beaumont a Bill on London for £6000 the Rec[eip]t of which he has acknowledged by this days post; tomorrow I shall send him a Bill for £4000.

	We have had remarkable fine Weather for this Week past; Mr Bell writes me that Mr Beaumont’s Tenants at Yaridge wo[ul]d get all their Oats well in by the end of this Week

                                                                                                         I am etc     J.E.B

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The Dukesfield Smelters and Carriers Project aimed to celebrate and discover the heritage of the Dukesfield Arches & lead carriers' routes between Blaydon and the lead mines of Allendale and Weardale. A two year community project, it was led by the Friends of the North Pennines in partnership with Hexhamshire and Slaley Parish Councils and the active support of Allendale Estates. It was funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund and the generous support of other sponsors. Friends of the North Pennines: Charity No:1137467