3.2.20 The tools of his trade – coin counterfeiting equipment – survive Edmund Robinson’s execution

The following appeared on in the Holmfirth Express on Saturday July 10th 1943.
Edmund Robinson was a curate in Holmfirth from 1673. He was soon recognised as living beyond his stipend and in 1677 was probably suspended, rather than as previously thought in 1688, because of ‘exceptionable’ behaviour. Where did his wealth come from? He was suspected of clipping and coining at his home of Bank End in Brockholes. His house was searched and the equipment discovered in the cellar. Incidentally, we do know that Edmund’s wealth was in part explained by payment for illegal weddings and baptisms.
The family were eventually incarcerated in York Castle Gaol while awaiting trial. Edmund was subsequently hanged in 1691, his wife Mary was acquitted, and the son was reprieved at the gallows, and allegedly sent to work at the Royal Mint.
Around 1800, when a barn at Bank End was demolished workmen found counterfeiting equipment, apparently hidden at the time of Edmund’s arrest. They ‘fell into the hands’ of the Newtons of Stagwood Hill and later ‘passed into the possession’ of the Lockwoods of Moorcroft, both of New Mill. On the death of Mr Arthur Lockwood, two counterfeiting instruments were sent with other stuff to New Mill Memorial Institute and subsequently discovered amongst scrap iron by Walter Booth of Sude Hill. The Institute opened in 1922 so there is quite a gap from then to the time of their first discovery in 1800.
One went to a Mr R Shrigley and the other to William Haigh JP of Lea House, New Mill.

I wonder where the bits of equipment are now? Can anyone shed further light on this story and perhaps fill in gaps and inconsistencies?

We still have copies available from the author (01484666528) and the publisher (01484683196). An intriguing individual, who at various times was a rogue curate, gentleman, parish constable, potential highwayman, fraudster and conterfeiter, land and property owner and moneylender.

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