Folio(s) 7-10. Letter to Lord Hobart [Secretary of State for War and the Colonies] from the Duke of Northumberland [Lord Lieutenant of Northumberland] supporting the plea made in the enclosure and asking Hobart to apply for protection from the Board of Admiralty.
Enclosed is a copy of a letter of 5 November to the Duke of Northumberland from William Berry, James Sandles and Stephen Sanderson on behalf of the Committee of The Old Shipping Company, Berwick, who have consented to their vessels being armed in the service of the country in case of invasion and have made arrangements through Captain Sir William H Douglas, commander of the Sea Fencibles there, for eleven smacks to sail to the King's Yard at Deptford to be armed. The writers state that for some time past the port's trade, mainly the supply of fresh fish and provisions to London, has been disturbed by naval ships, on the Thames and along the coast, impressing their seamen. As a result there are now three vessels loaded and unable to sail for lack of crew. They ask for special protection from impressment to be obtained from the Admiralty.