AS part of our weekly Crime Files series, we are taking a look back at the archives to bring you stories from Herefordshire's history.
The following story dates from 1851.

A MAN was hauled up before a court after his horse 'exposed' itself at a Herefordshire fair in 1851.

Emmanuel Meek appeared before William Bridgman and John Patridge Esqrs and the Reverend H. L. Whateley for an unusual case at the Ross Petty Sessions in Ross-on-Wye, Herefordshire, on July 25, 1851.

The accused was charged with one offence of indecent exposure, but the case was not all it would seem.

The charge is usually levied at people who have exposed themselves in public, but this was not the case for Meek.

Instead, the man's stallion had offended the people of Ross-on-Wye.

The court heard that Meek, who was from the township of East Dean, in the Forest of Dean district in Gloucestershire, had allowed his "entire" horse to be indecently exposed in the public streets of Ross-on-Wye on the 21st of that month.


The streets had been busy as the day in question was the Ross wool fair day, the court was told.

The newspaper report from the time, presumably in an effort not to further horrify to the public, did not go into further detail as to precisely what the offending horse had done to see its owner take the stand.

Meek was fined £2 4s 6d, with expenses, for the offence.