PRYCE-JONES MP MOBBED AT THE RAILWAY STATION
evening last Sir Pryce and Lady Pryce-Jones visited Llanidloes. They arrived
by the 5-12 train, from Machynlleth, and proceeded direct to the Trewethyn
Hotel. On their way thither they were recognised by some school children who
hooted them. The news quickly spread that Sir Pryce was in town, and about
half past six a crowd assembled in the vicinity of the hotel, who gave vent
to their feelings of disapprobation by groaning and hooting.
7.30 Sir Pryce and Lady Pryce-Jones left the Hotel, and apart from being hooted
they were allowed to enter the 'bus preparatory to being conveyed to the station,
without molestation. As they drove from the Hotel to the station they were
accompanied by the crowd, which had considerably increased in numbers by this
time, and was composed chiefly of factory girls and children, who alternately
gave hearty cheers for Mr Hanbury-Tracy, and hooted the occupants of the 'bus.
as the 'bus arrived at the Station one of the supporters of Sir Pryce-Jones,
apparently annoyed by the hoots and jeers which assailed him, was observed
to pick up stones, and assuming a defiant attitude, dared them to touch him.
This act aroused the temper of the lads, several of whom rushed at him, but
he, no doubt deeming discretion the better part of valour, ran away and sought
refuge in the booking office, leaving Sir Pryce Pryce-Jones in the lurch.
Sir Pryce had alighted from the 'bus, he came in for some hustling, but he
made his way through the waiting room, and on to the platform without receiving
anything worse than a little pushing about, and this ebullition of feeling
on the part of the crowd was undoubtedly caused by the unwise conduct already
referred to of one of his supporters.
Pryce-Jones and his wife then went into the refreshment room to await the
arrival of the mail train, whilst the crowd of people who had made their way
onto the platform, gathered around the door and windows of the room and indulged
in groaning and hooting.
the arrival of the train, Sir Pryce and Lady Pryce-Jones emerged from the
refreshment room, and began making their way through the crowd to the railway
carriage, he acted in a very defiant manner, striking with his stick at those
near him most recklessly. This aggravated the crowd and in his passage from
the refreshment room to the railway carriage he was somewhat roughly hustled
and jostled about.
Sir Pryce had succeeded in getting to the carriage door, and Lady Pryce-Jones
had entered, he continued to brandish his stick about, and struck a little
girl who was standing near a severe blow just above the eye which made the
blood flow. This act enraged the crowd so much that their attitude towards
him became very hostile and he came in for some rather rough treatment, whilst
several persons made unsuccessful efforts to obtain possession of his stick.
Inspector Lake acted in a most commendable manner throughout, and tried by
every means to appease the now infuriated crowd and persuade Sir Pryce, who
was now standing on the step of the carriage, to go inside. At length he entered
the carriage but again appeared at the door and savagely struck at the people,
but upon Inspector Lake catching hold of his stick and requesting him to be
quiet he desisted. The crowd continued to hoot him and there were cries of
"Remember Welshpool" but no sticks were used by anyone in the crowd,
the only persons possessing them being Sir Pryce and Inspector Lake.
train steamed out of the Station Sir Pryce shook his handkerchief defiantly
at the crowd standing on the platform, who responded by vigorously hooting
him. The children then proceeded down into the town carrying Sir Pryce Pryce-Jones's
hat, which had fallen off in the scramble and was now in a somewhat battered
and dilapidated condition. One boy in the crowd rushed into the backyard of
a prominent Conservative in the town, and securing the clothes prop hoisted
the hat upon it, and in this manner it was borne aloft through the principal
street of the town by a crowd of small boys. Ultimately it was burnt amid
the laughter and cheers of the children.