Suffragettes December 5 1913

THE MORNING POST DECEMBER 5 1913

MRS PANKHURST IN PRISON

DRIVE FROM PLYMOUTH TO EXETER

Mrs. Pankhurst was arrested on board the White Star steamship Majestic on arrival at Plymouth yesterday about noon from New York, and was subsequently taken to Exeter Gaol by motor car in charge of police officer and of detectives who had come from London. While at dinner on Wednesday evening she was informed of the action that the Government had decided to take, and when the Chief Constable of Plymouth, two officers from Scotland Yard and others instructed for the arrest went on board the Majestic Mrs. Pankhurst was asked to come to the Purser’s office to see them. She refused to do so, and the police, going to the promenade deck, made the arrest in the presence of many of the passengers. There was no scene or demonstration. When the Chief Constable of Plymouth asked Mrs. Pankhurst to consider herself under arrest she demanded his authority, and was answered that a warrant, in the circumstances was unnecessary. Mrs. Pankhurst at first declined to move, but, after a short conversation with the police officers, went on board a special tender that they had chartered to take her ashore. At her urgent request she was accompanied by Mrs. Rheta Child-Dorr, an American journalist and personal friend.

The tender on which the police had embarked unnoticed, at a Devonport quay, proceeded on leaving the Majestic, not to the Great Western Docks, Plymouth, the usual place for ocean passengers to land, but steamed up the Hamoaze about three miles to Bull Point, the Government explosives depot for Plymouth Naval Station. There were in waiting two motor-cars. One was entered by Mrs. Pankhurst and her friend, the Chief Constable, and a Scotland Yard officer, and in the other travelled the Plymouth police matron and four police-constables. Mrs. Pankhurst had not been allowed to bring away with her any of her baggage.

On leaving Bull Point, from which the public are at all times rigidly excluded, the cars proceeded across country by way of Tamerton Folliot until the main road from Plymouth to London was reached. Then the route taken was through Yelverton and across Dartmoor, passing Princetown and Moreton Hampstead, and the cars arrived at Exeter at a quarter past three, Mrs. Pankhurst being lodged in the county gaol.

Anticipating that Mrs. Pankhurst would be landed at the Great Western Docks, a large crowd had assembled there. A Suffragist bank played, and Mrs. Flora Drummond and a bodyguard of about twenty Suffragists, with motor-cars waiting, were at the Ocean Quay, Devonport, to receive Mrs. Pankhurst in case she should be landed there. At both places considerable irritation was shown when it was realised that the enthusiasts had been outwitted by the police, but there was no hostile demonstration. Miss Grew, addressing the crowd at the Great Western Docks, said the plan which had been adopted was proof that a miserably weak Government dared not face the Plymouth public and arrest Mrs. Pankhurst ashore.

Anticipating that Mrs. Pankhurst would be landed at the Great Western Docks, a large crowd had assembled there. A Suffragist bank played, and Mrs. Flora Drummond and a bodyguard of about twenty Suffragists, with motor-cars waiting, were at the Ocean Quay, Devonport, to receive Mrs. Pankhurst in case she should be landed there. At both places considerable irritation was shown when it was realised that the enthusiasts had been outwitted by the police, but there was no hostile demonstration. Miss Grew, addressing the crowd at the Great Western Docks, said the plan which had been adopted was proof that a miserably weak Government dared not face the Plymouth public and arrest Mrs. Pankhurst ashore.

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