Sleeping on a Manure Heap.
— At the Croydon County Petty Sessions Monday, before Sir T. Edridge (in the chair) and Mr. J. Cooper, jun., Henry Theobald (13) and John Theobald (12), two brothers, of Gladstone-road, Mitcham, were brought up in custody charged with being found sleeping on a manure heap Sunday morning at 2.15, at Grove-road, Common Fields, Mitcham.
— Prisoners pleaded guilty.
— P.-c. 48 WR said he heard a noise at 2.15 on Sunday morning in Grove-road. He went to a manure heap and there found the two prisoners. He asked them why they did not go home, and they said they didn’t know. In reply to witness’s question, they said their father did not beat them or drive them away. The younger prisoner said their parents gave him some halfpence to buy water cresses, and they took the money home again. Witness took them to the station and charged them. The father refused to bail them out.
— Mr. Theobald said had great trouble with the boys. His wife had been an invalid for two years, and the boys stayed out night after night and would do no work at home.
— Sir Thomas remanded the boys until Saturday, and liberated them from custody on their promising to stop at home, have their meals there, sleep there, and return with their parents to the Court on Saturday.
Source: Croydon Advertiser and East Surrey Reporter – Saturday 27 October 1888 from the British Newspaper Archive (subscription required)