To the Editor


In the High Peak News of March 17th appears a letter from A.H. Colles, and from the beginning to the end of the one-sided epistle the Doctor who told the poor man Jodrell “they kept doctors at Chapel-en-le-Frith Workhouse for such men as him” is sheltered.

But the cloak is a perforated one.

If Dr Allan had lived and “done hard work” at Whaley Bridge for at least 114 years it would not have justified him as a parish doctor in refusing to listen to the appeal of Jodrell. The Deputy-Coroner “stated his case” as he thought proper, and did not express himself as the Coroner would have done, if I am not, after carefully reading the account of the inquest which W.H. Colles thinks “unique,” mistaken. There are some wonderful paraphrases in that letter. “As if he were the vilest monster.”

Good words, and applicable, think I, as one who does not claim to be included in W.H. Colles’ category of “sensible persons.” Who does he mean, or what does he mean, by “who is in the least degree removed from the state that is best described as maudlin”! Is it Jodrell? If so he, poor chap, has had more than enough to cause him to be in such a condition. Is it the Deputy-Coroner? Or the “at least 14 years’ hard worked doctor,” or W.H. Colles? I should like to know. It is, however, so stated in the letter as to be an unknown quantity, so I leave it to those who have “the most knowledge of doctors and their troubles, but most deeply sympathise with Jodrell” for all that.

I have not extended this letter to any great length and therefore ask but to be excused for not putting my name to it; I am not the only earner of 17s 10d a-week who might get into difficulties were his name handed about in newspapers.

Yours &c,


High Street, Whaley Bridge, March 21st.

High Peak News

31 March 1888

The sudden death of a woman at whaley bridge

To the Editor


With your permission I would like to ask the writers of the numerous letters that have been inserted in the High Peak News what their object is. One section of them pitches into Dr Allan just as mercilessly as though he were guilty of something very atrocious – I don’t say he is, and I don’t say he is not – and the other section stand up in his defence, and parry with a good deal of skill all the many thrusts made. The doctor did act a bit thoughtlessly there is no doubt, and he has had dubbing enough for it, but what the dickens is the use of carrying the war to the knife as is being done.

Jodrell must feel satisfied at the rating.

At the inquest plain facts, and unvarnished I should say, came out, and all the controversial matter we have seen in print has adduced nothing beyond a sort of grammatical analysis of whatever your correspondents think fit to put to paper. Let another man go to Dr Allan’s any time he likes to choose, and he will receive that attention which the importance of his case calls for, you may rest assured.

Archibald Vicar’s view of the case is that the weather stopped him from turning out, and the non-production of the spade ace kept his surgical skill from displaying itself. Here’s another view. The doctor thought a midwife had the case in hand, and as she had successfully performed many similar operations (not “manipulative”), did not suppose but that she would do this.

Yours &c,


Horwich End

Mar. 27th 1888.