The Battle Of New Brighton

By W. Senior, published May 1911


In 1755, HMS “Winchelsea” sent a barge to press merchant seamen off “Upton”, only to be met by loaded guns and cutlasses.   The “Upton” crew then sailed across to the barge, exchanged musket fire, capsized, were rescued and pressed. The “Tarleton a few days later similarly threatened the “Winchelsea” barge. The barge requested they acknowledge the King’s ship by flying their colours and lowering the top-gallant sail. The response was a volley at which the barge and “Winchelsea” returned fire but “Tarleton” escaped to Liverpool. The subsequent Admiralty proceedings recognised a merchant seaman’s entitlement to violently resist the press.

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Filed under: Irish Sea | Other (Eighteenth C) | Press Gangs
Subjects include: Administration | Manpower & Life at Sea | Merchant Marines | Navies

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